If there’s one thing I’ve never understood about the SAILOR MOON franchise, it’s the whole secret identity thing. It’s not like any of the Sailor Guardians are actually disguised; the only thing that obscures any piece of Usagi’s face is her tiara, and that often comes off so she can throw it at the bad guys. At least Tuxedo Mask and Sailor V put on token disguises with their “way to big to conceal anything” domino masks. Superman does a better job with his Clark Kent specs.
But it’s not just that the bad guys are face blind. Are we supposed to be guessing who Tuxedo Mask is? Are we really supposed to be wondering who the secret Moon Princess is?
It’s that sort of stuff that you think about while watching SAILOR MOON CRYSTAL, which is to say that while you’re watching CRYSTAL you’re trying to keep your brain occupied. Which is to say that CRYSTAL is… kind of off-putting.
What I have to keep reminding myself is that I should go easy on the show. It’s meant for children, whose suspension of disbelief is much more pliable than mine.
But then the show will do something that’s just so off-putting. For instance, in Rei’s premiere episode she’s accused of kidnapping a child because she’s a reclusive Shinto shrine maiden. Ridiculous, yes, but when people are grieving they say strange things. It’s when Usagi says Rei is “too beautiful to have committed the crime” that I recoiled. Sailor Moon: guardian of justice as long as you’re pretty?
Sure Usagi is a bit of an idiot, but that’s just plain wrong. Kind of like how Sailor Mars’s posing sequence doesn’t feature Sailor Mars but rather some sort of pudding person with no real joints or even muscle mass to stand upright on her own.
But am I still watching SAILOR MOON CRYSTAL? I suppose I am, out of some weird sense of obligation. I’ve been promised that it “gets good” after a certain point when all the Guardians are gathered, and I still have fond memories of the weirdness of the later seasons of the original series. But until then, I guess I’m just going to do my cultural homework like a good little doobie.
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About the Author
Matt Murphy is a freelance nerd who has contributed to many nerd websites. You can reach him by going to where the light meets the shadow, by sending out zeta-brainwaves or by following him on Twitter @Murphix.