When a series gains critical mass and becomes unimaginably popular with viewers the world over, chances are that it’s going to continue indefinitely regardless of story limitations or anything else that would, in any other case, cease it’s production. We’ve seen this countless times before with Shonen Jump series’ like Dragon Ball, Naruto, and Bleach, but it is not an issue that only effects series’ directed at young boys.
Psycho-Pass was treated to this unfortunate elongating treatment, as well as Durarara!!, and many others. While the series’ continuation past the point of worthwhile storytelling does not take away from one’s enjoyment of it’s original run, it does do wonders in sullying the name what was originally seen as something great. Though, it depends on who you are, as many things do.
For someone like myself, I enjoy to see something end on a high, rather than it continue only to fall into an odd mediocre obscurity, but others simply enjoy the idea that their favorite Anime, Manga, or Video Game is continuing.
Sailor Moon is one of those series’ wherein which I feel the fans of it will be glad to see it continue regardless of the story featured, so long as it has their favorite characters and their favorite catchphrases. As someone with a partner who absolutely adores the series, I am well-aware of what Sailor Moon can do to aid in the happiness of not only her, but many like her, so for that reason I can understand why people would want to see it continue. As someone who finds the series lacklustre at best, I can’t help but think that it should have ended after the first season, loose ends and all.
I would, once again, like to thank Madman Entertainment for their continued support of us here at SnapThirty, and specifically for allowing me the opportunity to partake in the review of Sailor Moon R Part One. Good or bad, it is always an honour.
Usagi and her friends return to their normal lives after their epic battle, but the Sailor Guardians are called back into action when powerful new enemies appear. By the power of the Legendary Silver Crystal, Sailor Moon gains strength with a dazzling new attack and transformation. The coming battle won’t be easy, but things get even more complicated when a mysterious pink-haired girl falls from the sky and goes after Mamoru! – Madman Entertainment
I have never been a fan of using amnesia as a storytelling tool. I feel as though, in most cases, it is only done as a simple way to rehash old storylines or old interactions, so when the first season of Sailor Moon ended with the world being reset, and the memories of the Sailor Scouts being wiped, I couldn’t help but feel a deep sense of dread. Unfortunately for the series, Sailor Moon R’s first handful of episodes centre themselves around the fact that, if you havn’t already guessed it; the Sailor Scouts no longer know each other. This means Usagi is back to her old tricks; being a bratty teenager and a terrible protagonist for the series, showing that some things truly never change, but do you know what else hasn’t changed? Evil. It still exists in the universe and, thanks to the impact of a comet in Usagi’s town, it has once again shown it’s ugly face here on Earth.
This portion of the new season felt to me like one big filler arc simply because it took the episodic monster-of-the-week layout of the original season and just coated it in a new colour. It was now not Queen Beryl who sought the destruction of Earth, but two aliens who only want the emotional energy of human beings, but more specifically…teenage girls. Eventually more fitting enemies arrive, alongside a new Sailor Scout character, and the memories of the main crew, so within a matter of ten episodes the series practically returns to the state it was a few episodes before the end of the last season.
Despite each of the Sailor Scouts having gone through so much, it seems as though the only one of them that showed actual personality development was Sailor Mars who kicked the jealous girlfriend persona to the curb and instead let her strong, silent side shine. This season was so lousy in terms of character development that even Ami, perhaps the most realistic Sailor Scout, had her identity sliced to ribbons. She went from being the voice of reason in the first series to a study-crazed nit-picker in the second.
Thankfully, the story was somewhat redeemed by the arc introduced closer to the end of this release release that focuses on the arrival of the mysterious “pink-haired girl” who shares the same name as Usagi, is accompanied by a ball-style robot with the name “Luna P”, and looks almost exactly the same as our heroine, but no one cares to question any of these features so she remains an enigma throughout the episodes bundled in this release. Her arrival marks the beginning of a more suitable arc for the series, but it also works to accentuate Usagi’s inability to grow as a character, which sadly adds only to the misfortune of the series.
Much like the last season, Sailor Moon R retains most of the same audio and visual features. Fact is; at the time of the series’ original release, Sailor Moon was considered a high quality Anime production, and while that is no longer the case, I still feel as though some credit should go to the team that worked on it all those years ago because what they produced was something wonderfully ground-breaking for it’s time, especially for the world of week-to-week television animation. What great about watching Sailor Moon in this day and age is that, despite the fact that I never experienced it as a kid, it filled me with an unusual sense of nostalgia, and I believe it was brought upon thanks to the classic style of animation in conjunction with that of it’s soundtrack.
Sailor Moon uses a great deal of orchestral-style music composition that suits the series to an absolute tee, and it’s visuals are colourful and bubbly, so even in 2016 I believe it still has something to offer in terms of an enjoyable sensory experience. Once again, this new release of Sailor Moon features a brand-new English voice cast, and despite the fact that the dialogue was dated and the characters didn’t offer much in terms of true-to-life personality, I still felt as though the voice actresses, and their fellow actors, brought out the very best in their specific characters.
Nobody enjoys writing a bad review, but unfortunately this is just the way it has to be sometimes. Sailor Moon is not the best Anime series for me, but I think that has a lot to do with the fact that I am nowhere near it’s target demographic. Even so, it doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to understand that some of the writing of Sailor Moon is downright silly, though once again I feel as though, to some people, that’s the charm. I suppose it’s akin to that of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure.
The fact remains; Sailor Moon R spent a lot of it’s time replaying the events strikingly similar to that of the first season with the only difference this time being that the enemies were not the same as they once were. Sadly, I saw right through that and couldn’t help but judge it the entire time for doing so. Sailor Moon R tried to do something different, but it stuck to close to what it was comfortable with, and because of that it fell flat…for the most part. As mentioned earlier; the arrival of this “pink-haired girl” has brought a certain air of change to the season, and considering this is but part one of two, my hope is that the latter half does something great with this story.
Experience it for yourself thanks to Madman Entertainment. To grab a copy of Sailor Moon R (Season One) Part One Click Here.