I still find it shocking that this is official art by Naoko
If you grew up in the pearl-clutching 80s and 90s in North America, the very concept of nudity appearing in a children’s cartoon was absolutely unfathomable. Exposed flesh on a children’s cartoon? Oh, my word!!
That was one of the biggest shocks for me — and I’m sure many of you — when I first started watching anime in the late 90s: the fact that my favorite characters are here, transforming, battling, or just flying around naked… and it’s all just so normal.
But one thing that I’ve always wondered is: what did the production staff think about all this? Fortunately for us, Kimiharu Obata, key animator for several episodes of Sailor Moon and Sailor Moon R, has kindly put pen to paper to talk about this very issue. Feel free to read this in the office — it’s absolutely SFW!
Google Translated Sailor Moon is truly a thing of beauty
Between the anime, manga, games, musicals, live action TV show, audio dramas, and more, there’s a massive volume of Sailor Moon material still left untranslated, and there are many fans out there eager to try to pick up the slack and bring their favorite series to an even bigger audience.
So what’s a fan with all the passion, but not exactly the proper language skills, to do? Well, that’s where Google translation usually comes in.
Today, we’re going to take a look at several key scenes in the Sailor Moon manga and run them through our good friend Google Translate. While we look at the results, I’d like to discuss the pros, cons, and provide a few suggestions about how people can help out in bringing Sailor Moon to other fans in their own language.
Grab a cup of coffee, because things are gonna get a bit weird!
♪ Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes! Turn and face the strange ♪
If 2017 was a year of improvements, then I want 2018 to be a year of facing new challenges. Yes, challenges. There are a lot of exciting new things coming to Tuxedo Unmasked this year, and I hope you’ll join me along for the ride!
So, what new things are coming? Glad you asked!
- A Tuxedo Unmasked book covering the 90s Sailor Moon anime is in the works
- I’m translating Naoko’s liner notes from the original manga releases
- Translations of interviews with Naoko and others will now be a regular feature
Of course, as we all know, the devil is in the details. Read on to find out what excitement awaits us in 2018!
“That’s no moon, it’s a…” Sailor Soldier
Remember that time that Usagi sang about beautiful corpses, painful tattoos, and wanting to control your lover until every little breath of theirs belongs to you? Of course you do, because how could you possibly forget Moon Revenge, the bizarre ending theme to the Sailor Moon R movie.
But like most things that get lost in translation, these sort of thing can make at least a little more sense when looked at in the proper context. And today, that’s what we’re going to talk about!
If you’ve ever been up late at night fretting over lovely corpses and engraved tattoos, this one’s for you!
Oh, Naoko, you and your jokes…
If we were to sit here and talk about everything I love about Ms. Takeuchi and her work on Sailor Moon, we’d probably be here for quite awhile. Since we neither have that kind of time, nor is anyone really interested in reading my open love letter to the creative force behind this series, I’ll spare you.
But there is one point that I’d like to highlight today, and that’s how often she was willing to step outside her comfort zone to try new things with her characters, both in her art and in her storytelling.
Today we’re going to take a look at when Naoko branched out into comedy strips starring our favorite soldiers of love and justice! If that interests you, stick around!
What translating feels like
One common theme that runs through many of the topics I end up discussing is that of the differences between Japanese and English nuance, and how much of that gets lost in translation.
I want to make it clear that I don’t mean this as an indictment against some of the translators who have taken on (or been assigned) the challenge that Sailor Moon has to offer. In fact, I’d like to take a look at some of the challenges people face when translating Sailor Moon – or really, any Japanese media with a sufficiently deep enough plot – into another language.
This topic may be a little inside baseball, but if you’ve ever been interested in the art of translation, this article may be for you!
We’re Ikimasho-ing, in a Rashiku-manner
“La la la never give up, ganbaru wa!” – these truly are words to live by, and I don’t think any of our beloved sailor-suited girls of love and justice could have said it any better (absent the help of the musical genius of Stan Bush) in the second ending to the Sailor Moon SuperS anime, Rashiku Ikimasho.
But there’s a problem: when you stop and read through the lyrics, it doesn’t actually make a whole lot of sense.
Today we’re going to talk about some of the confusion surrounding this awesome song, and what makes the song so powerful. This may get a bit detailed, so be sure you’ve had a nice cup of coffee (or delicious Pop-Tart?) before we dive straight in!