What Were Ikuhara’s Inspirations for the Sailor Moon R Movie? (Part 2)

Fiore and his flower minions

Fiore and his flower minions

After finishing the first half of my review of Ikuhara’s director’s notes for the Sailor Moon R movie, I have to admit that I feel like I have a bit of a better understanding of what story he intended to tell.

And you know, I think I like the movie even more. Knowing that there’s actual meaning behind scenes I just glossed over adds a new depth to the movie for me, and it’s definitely moved up on my “to watch” list.

That said, join me as I continue on with Director Ikuhara’s notes for chapters 11 through 16!

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What Were Ikuhara’s Inspirations for the Sailor Moon R Movie? (Part 1)

Flower Garden in the Sailor Moon R Movie

Flower Garden in the Sailor Moon R Movie

Love him or hate him, Director Kunihiko Ikuhara had a huge impact on the direction that the Sailor Moon anime took and, by extension, could arguably be said to be one of the more influential forces behind the series – especially for those fans who have only seen the anime.

One of his more well-known achievements in terms of Sailor Moon, though, is his work on the Sailor Moon R movie. I’ve written about his thoughts on the movie before, with regard to Usagi and the conflicting representations of motherhood, but today we’re going to take a deeper dive into his thoughts on the imagery of the movie. Come along!

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[Manga Comparison] Act 1 – Usagi (Sailor Moon)

Manga Comparison (Act 1)

Manga Comparison (Act 1)

What is the Manga Comparison Project?

Since its initial release in the February 1992 issue of Nakayoshi, the Sailor Moon manga has gone through four major reprints in Japan – the original Nakayoshi print, the compilation tankobon print (early 90s), the re-mastered ‘shinsoban‘ reprints (early 2000s), and the ‘kanzen‘ (early 2010s). What you may not know, though, is that Ms. Takeuchi has made changes to the art and text with each release.

This project is dedicated to compiling a list of what’s changed with each release to help us better understand how Sailor Moon has evolved over its past 25 years.

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Where Did the Moon Stick Get its Name?

Original anime and Crystal Moon Sticks

Original anime and Crystal Moon Sticks

For those of us first exposed to Sailor Moon through the DiC dub and familiar with the terminology there, learning that our beloved Crescent Moon Wand was actually known in Japan as the Moon Stick was… well… something of a let down. While I – and I’m sure many others – was enthusiastic to learn everything I could about the “pure, original” form of my favorite anime, the Moon Stick always rubbed me the wrong way. Unlike everything else in the series, it lacked that pizzazz a lot of Sailor Moon was known for.

So what happened? How did the Moon Stick come to be known by such a simple name? Today, we’re going to take a look at just that.

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What Do We Know About DALI, the Band Behind Moonlight Densetsu?

DALI – Akira Ishizawa, Mari Nishimoto, Sayuri Tsuchiya, and Misuzu Takahashi

DALI – Akira Ishizawa, Mari Nishimoto, Sayuri Tsuchiya, and Misuzu Takahashi

It’s been over twenty-five years since the opening chords of Moonlight Densetsu first graced the airwaves, heralding in a new anime that would ultimately take Japan – and then the world – by storm. And yet, even as more and more information comes to light about what went on behind the scenes of making Sailor Moon, we’re still left with a bizarre mystery: where did the band DALI come from, and where did they go?

Though I doubt we’ll ever be able to answer this question completely, today I’d like to invite you along to go over what details we do know about DALI, and for a rare mini-interview with the band.

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Why Does Sailor Pluto Look Different From the Rest?

Sailor Pluto looks a little... hmm.

Sailor Pluto looks a little… hmm.

Take a look at any lineup of the Sailor Soldiers and you’ll undoubtedly notice that, well… Setsuna – Sailor Pluto – tends to stand out just a bit from the other members of the Sailor Team. But just why is that?

One of the theories I’ve seen thrown around a lot is that Sailor Pluto isn’t Japanese, and that is why she differs in appearance from the rest of the cast. Well, today we’ll take a look at this question and more, and see what Ms. Takeuchi and the world of Sailor Moon can tell us about the Sailor Soldier of Time!

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Why Didn’t Megumi Ogata Sing Sailor Uranus’ Song, Initial U?

Sailor Uranus transformation

Sailor Uranus transformation

When I was first getting into anime, the concept of “character songs” (or sometimes known as “image songs”) was something that was a little hard to wrap my mind around. They’re essentially songs written from the character’s point of view and performed in character. If done right, if gives you further insight into the character in a way that you don’t often hear them express themselves.

If done wrong…? Well, that’s what we’re going to talk about today. Join along for a trip down memory lane as we discuss what went wrong with Initial U!

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Is Sailor Saturn a Member of the Outer Senshi?

Are there too many members here?

Are there too many members here?

The interesting, and seemingly inaccurate, breakdown of the two teams of Sailor Soldiers is definitely an interesting issue that I don’t feel gets discussed as much as it deserves to. Obviously from where we stand at the 25th anniversary of the beginning of Sailor Moon there are many answers that we could provide, but I’d rather take a look in how the teams formed in the first place.

Join me along for a look back into how the Inner and Outer senshi teams were formed in the first place, and where Sailor Saturn fits into that mess.

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How Many Sailor Senshi Are There in the Sailor Moon Universe?

Sailor Soldiers Assemble!

Sailor Soldiers Assemble!

It’s amazing how stupid this question sounds on the surface, but when you stop and get down to it, it’s actually a lot harder than you’d think to count all of the canonical Sailor Soldiers. The biggest impacting factor on answering this question is your imagination what you’re willing to consider canon in the Sailor Moon universe.

As much as I’d love to write a long intro and drag this out, we’ve got a lot of discussion ahead of us, so let’s get this started!

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What Challenges Were Faced In Developing Sailor Moon: Another Story?

Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon: Another Story (1995; Super Famicom)

Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon: Another Story (1995; Super Famicom)

Released on September 22, 1995, – halfway through the anime’s SuperS season, despite being firmly entrenched in Sailor Moon S lore – Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon: Another Story was a groundbreaking RPG for its time. Not only was it an RPG built from the ground up for a young, female audience, but it also had a much larger cast of characters than most other games in the genre dared to at the time and even included audio from the actual voice talent.

Today I’ll be translating an interview with members of the development staff so we can take a look at some of the challenges they faced in making the game. Let’s get going!

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