Sunday, July 6, 2014

Sailor Moon Crystal First Impressions

So the first episode of the long-awaited reboot of Sailor Moon is up and available (check hulu, crunchyroll, etc) aaaaanddddd.....

It's pretty much exactly what they told us to expect.

The art is gorgeous but somehow closer to Naoko Takeuchi's original manga work (by the way, you know you like Sailor Moon when you can spell Takeuchi without even hesitating).  It feels dated but fresh.  Luna is young again like she is supposed to be (as much as the original American dub is part of my childhood, having an old matronly Luna is one of its more egregious sins).

They've said over and over again that this new reboot is going to be "closer to the manga". Well, that's good and bad.  The original anime had a crap-ton more character development that the manga was pretty lacking in, although it also made Mamoru a douchebag that made people fall for Seiya (or "fucking Seiya" as I refer to her). The manga has a breakneck pace throughout all of the original material that made it to the original dub.

If this series is merely a faithful reproduction of a twenty+ year old manga with gorgeous art, then well, it won't live up to what I want it to be, but it will be impossible to not enjoy (at least for me).

Sailor Moon was such a huge part of my childhood I can't personally process it.  In spite of the fact that I would completely rewrite the series (which many fanfic authors have done to great effect) if I was at the helm (maintain all the plot points, but develop characters, twist the feels, maybe finally put Minako and Rei together somewhere outside of the live action series (OK, that's a personal bias. I probably wouldn't do that without Takeuchi-sama's explicit permission) and for the love of all that is holy have the battles have some actual weight and real action to them.  In spite of all that, if this series is just a manga-to-anime translation, I will love it.

Even with all of the great that it could have been, I won't be able to not watch it with a smile across my face the entire time.  'cuz approximately five seconds after realizing that they're doing the same episode 1 that we've seen at least two previous times (first anime and first manga), in spite of being let down and disappointed and seriously feeling the lack of what could have been, I was smiling.

Sailor Moon's got its hooks firmly into me and even though I half-heartedly deny their existence by not spending money on manga re-releases and anime DVDs, if Sailor Moon is on, you can bet I'll be watching.

Please though, for the love of god, please have Motoki and Mamoru be in fucking high school, not college. And please don't force Mamoru's character into some sort of pinnacle of douchebaggery.