First Impressions – Sailor Moon Crystal – METANORN

First Impressions – Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon: Crystal

In the name of the moon…

I have no words for this remake. More like I can’t find any words because I’m SO EXCITED TO SEE IT SO LET’S SEE IT NAOOOWWWW
I’m pretty sure that there’s at least 2 generations of fans waiting to lynch anyone who screws this new version of Sailor Moon up, so let’s see how they managed.

“Reboot”?

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anaaga// When I reviewed some reactions about the new Sailor Moon anime, I found not a little amount of people are not really pleased with the new Sailor Moon. I can understand why they think it’s not the same with the original anime. The first episode is too fast, the art is different, the voices sound awkward for some, and even Usagi’s jutsu has a different name from the original anime! It seems that many consider this more of a reboot than a remake.

However, I am actually happy with these changes. This is because of the fact that the changes are made so that the new adaptation is more faithful to the manga. Yes, the episode feels rushed, but believe me or not, that’s how the first chapter of the manga is. And that’s only the first chapter. I’m also loving all the little details the in the remake that makes it closer to the manga, such as Usagi’s test paper, her friend’s remark about the jewels, and so on. And yes, Usagi’s original jutsu is Boomerang, not magic. I also appreciate how Toeri tried to make the anime feels like an old-school with the soft background, and so on… Except with the transformation that is CGed. But oh well, what can I do about that?

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Usagi seems really skinny and more mature in this remake, but this is the studio trying to be closer with Takeuchi’s original art style. She claimed that Leiji Matsumoto’s  Galaxy Express gives a great impact with how she designed the characters in Sailor Moon (even Tuxedo Mask’s personality is based on Captain Harlock), therefore the resemblance of the art style between the two and how mature-like the characters look like in this remake. And there’s nothing wrong with sexy Tuxedo Mask, right? Teheh. As for the voice acting… Usagi did sound awkward at first, but somehow Karakuri convinced me that it’s totally fine (and it is, teheh). And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with Nojima Kenji trying to sound like Furuya Toru because original Tuxedo Mask seiyuu and all that. The seiyuu tried their best to sound as great as possible, and I’m happy with the effort they poured in this anime.

The Wonderful World of Shoujo

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Things went pastel and bishounen sparkles showed up. It MUST be true love.

Karakuri// Did you know that a moonbow was a thing? I certainly didn’t. Anyways, yes, Sailor Moon is extremely shoujo. Though that’s only to be expected, since this was the series that defined a lot of shoujo and mahou shoujo genre traits for later series. There’s also definitely romance in this, if you couldn’t tell. I know I said that this was “darker” in Metanorn’s summer preview, but after some self reflection, I think that might have been a bit misleading. This isn’t Madoka Magica and doesn’t have nearly as much despair. On the other hand, it’s not quite Precure level of innocence either. Characters are capable of dying in this (or even suicide in at least one case I can remember), and the forces of evil can just be evil for the hell of it. Sometimes the villains are just misunderstood individuals, but there’s also the kind that just want to destroy the world.

I, uh, definitely had a fangirl moment with Kishio Daisuke voicing Jadeite. I also saw somewhere that they brought in Toriumi Kousuke for Nephrite too, and that’s really exciting. The updated seiyuu cast is just really exciting in general, and I already love the changes they have in Crystal. As for Mitsuishi Kotono as Usagi, I can sympathize with some of the complaints. In 2014, hearing the same kind of voice acting as the 90’s seems like a couple steps back. However, Mitsushi is perfectly capable of voicing a teenage character, so it’s not because of the seiyuu’s lack of talent or anything that Usagi sounds like this now. The people in charge probably had her voice Usagi like that for nostalgia’s sake. They went with the exact same transformation sequence (in CG), when they could have come up with something new, so while they’re trying to make this a “new” Sailor Moon, they’re not completely forgetting what the old one was like.

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As for Tsukino Usagi herself, she’s kind of a… different heroine. Or at least, she’s a bit unique to what the mahou shoujo heroines are like now. She’s not some perfect human being who’s one desire in life is to help people, but instead she’s kind of irresponsible, childish, and she resorts to crying pretty easily. It’s easy to see why the characters that came after Usagi are a bit more mature, since watching her fumble around for most of the episode wasn’t the easiest thing to watch, but she’s the leader of the group nonetheless. Watching her slowly become more leader-like is one of the things the storyline will develop. …Though the anime seems to only be covering the Dark Kingdom arc, so we’ll see how far that actually progresses.


Some will think that I’m extremely biased with my judgment of this anime. In a way, I am. I am actually one of the very few people who read the manga first then watched the anime. And even at the end, I failed to finish all of my Sailor Moon anime because of its minor inconsistencies with the manga (lol I was such a manga elitist, and I was only in elementary school too). So for me, the manga is my childhood. Though I don’t think the original anime was bad too. It made my days fun. However, the manga gave me more impact than the anime. That is why I am happy when this remake is faithful to the manga. I can overlook its flaws because of its consistency with the manga… But even when it’s not faithful to the manga, I think I still can overlook its flaws. I’m not such a manga elitist now, so I’m fine with any Sailor Moon anime. What’s important is that Sailor Moon is back, and that’s the most important thing for this show. And if Sailor Moon is back, there’s nothing wrong with it. Teheh.


Well, I’m pretty damn pleased with how things turned out. My first experience with Sailor Moon was the English dub that aired on TV. So the original anime was a bigger part of my life than the manga ever was. Though, uh, like anaaga I never actually finished watching the entire anime for some reason. However, I’m happy that the show is being remade, and following the mange more closely. Things are pretty similar to the original anime right now, but a few events definitely branch off, and this version should definitely have a lot less “monster of the week” filler. I also love the older style that this anime is using. Obviously a few things have been updated, but they’ve definitely kept aspects like the pastel scenery or the transformation sequence for nostalgia’s sake. …I don’t know how I feel about the CG, but I’ll get over it. Just like how I’ll get over the Momoiro Clover Z’s OP and EDs (I’m not entirely fond of the songs, though I’ve never been a fan of any of Sailor Moon’s OPs or EDs) and some of the QUALITY animation. Really, I’m just happy that this remake is a thing that exists.

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Five guesses as to who might be mildly important in the next episode.

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20 Responses to “First Impressions – Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon: Crystal”

  1. Mirun says:

    I am manly enough to admit. I enjoyed this greatly. My first introduction to anime was actually Yu Yu Hakusho and I’d like to see that remade. But alas I settle with Sailor Moon. Maybe they will bring back Card Captor Sakura too? I loved this version of Sailor Moon. I liked everything about it and I did watch the original. Personally, I like Usagi because she is human. Unlike a lot of these other maho shoujo girls. Yes, she’s clutzy, yes she’s a crybaby, and whiny. But guess what? She’s young, she’s inexperienced and human reactions. She’s unique and it’s her unique that gives her something special.

    • thorgriim says:

      Maybe they will bring back Card Captor Sakura too?

      possible-cardcaptor-sakura-remake?

      but if ya don’t wanna click,

      Original Text: 本誌は「CCさくら」を捕獲したい!!
      ”汝のあるべき姿に戻れ、リメ~イク!”
      「どうせなら、新しい『CCさくら』を作りたいです。できれば、だけど・・・」

      Translation: This magazine wants to capture Cardcaptor Sakura!!
      “If the anime did return, it would be a re~make!”
      “I want to make a new Cardcaptor Sakura, if possible, but…”

      So its a possibility, but I haven’t heard anything else about it yet, so I hope the will, But I doubt it will happen anytime soon, Maybe they will see how well Sailor Moon does? who knows.

  2. Highway says:

    I thought this was fine. Usagi’s personality is fun, and the show just does what it does. Her hair is totally goofy. I have nothing else Sailor Moon to compare it to, so I’ll be fine with whatever this show does.

    • Irenesharda says:

      Once again, opposites! 🙂

      • BlackBriar says:

        You two are like night and day. 😉

      • Di Gi Kazune says:

        Yin and Yang
        Day and Night
        Light and Darkness
        Oil and Water
        Fire and Water
        Earth and Air
        Husband and Wife

        Wait, strike that last one out…

    • Karakuri says:

      Usagi used to annoy the crap out of me back in my loli days, but I guess I’ve gotten more tolerant. xD She’s actually kind of endearing now.

  3. Irenesharda says:

    Umm, I will say this. I did not grow up with Sailor Moon. Let me repeat that: I DID NOT grow up with Sailor Moon.

    I knew about her, I saw the toy commercials, but Sailor Moon was not on the TV channels I got as a kid, and also my mother, who controlled our TV time, didn’t allow us to watch anime. So, no, Sailor Moon has no nostalgic significance to me.

    The first time I ever saw an episode of the old show, I was twenty and in college. I just watched it to see why some of my friends had liked it so much. And I can tell you now, that I watched one episode, and I was done. The saccharine stupidity, the annoying voices, the boring plot, the ridiculous “romance”, the nonsensical villains, I just couldn’t take it and gave up. It was obvious that whatever window that Sailor Moon had, to become a part of my life had long since passed. I gave up trying to see what everyone else saw in it and just decided to watch the abridged series, which I did find hilarious.

    I decided to look at this new series to see if an updated look could get me into the Sailor Moon craze.

    Nope.

    Just as simple, idiotic, and annoying as I remembered and I cannot stand Usagi as a character. There were a couple of good animation shots here and there of space and the moon and what not, but nope, I dropped this thing like a hot potato.

    You guys have fun!

    • Di Gi Kazune says:

      Like you, it holds no nostalgia here. Then again when you have been staying in a part of the work where Japanese animation is a regular thing, it sorta blends into the background. I believe it became a big thing when it was exported to the Western audiences in the late 90s and it was pretty much one of the few shows that made it onto the network TV when I was at uni at the time. Retrospectively, it was cheesy but mind you, it was written for the young girl audience (and subverted by a certain other demographic group).

      Likewise it serves at the template for all the subsequent magical girl sentai shows (ala precute errr.. precuRe et. al). Why reboot this series? $$$ sounds like the main reason since the original core demographic has now grown up and has the spending power for merchandise; much like how the Care Bears and MLP have got a revival as those of us that grew up with them as children now are working with financial backing. Though I must say the newer Care Bears plushies are lacking compared to the 80s’ ones… Not that I know anything about it…

      In summary, if western franchises of anything can be rebooted, why not Japanese ones.

  4. BlackBriar says:

    What a shock it was finding out this getting a reboot… and after so long. A blast from the past. Sailor Moon was one of the first shows I ever saw on Toonami. Alongside DBZ and Yu Yu Hakusho. Now that I’m older, the campiness of the show is easier to notice but that’s not a bad thing since the lead girl herself is goofy. Therefore, it’s appropriate. Her figure is definitely leaner compared to the franchise’s prior series. Maybe she was the same in the manga (Have yet to take a crack at it) and the material is getting adapted in close detail?

    One thing that’s going to need some getting used to is her name. Usagi is new to me because the predecessor’s English dub has had her name as Serena for as long as I could remember. My memory of the whole thing in general is vague. Other than that, it’s good to see Sailor Moon again.

    • Karakuri says:

      Ahaha you were pretty much the last person I would have expected here, BB. Glad to have you on board though. You can join anaaga and I in fond reminiscence.

      Hmmm, it was the same for me. Serena instead of Usagi. Just wait until you see what the dub did with some of the character genders. A few male enemies were made female. Though I guess they wanted to do something, since one of the male enemies turned female was made inexplicably gay in the original anime. xD

      • BlackBriar says:

        Ahaha you were pretty much the last person I would have expected here, BB

        Hahaha, is it that much of a shock? I’ve already survived the likes of Amnesia. And that was out of my comfort zone.

  5. anaaga says:

    Lol I remember the fillers. I remember a particular filler of Pharaoh 99 Arc, and I remember it because of Rei being handcuffed and tied up then tortured until her shinto uniform got torn everywhere. Definitely a sign of a masochism and perversion at an early age. And the enemy’s boobs too.

    • Karakuri says:

      I, uh, definitely don’t remember that filler episode. Actually, I don’t think I made it that far in watching the anime.

  6. d-LaN says:

    I’m also in the category of “did not grow up with Sailor Moon”. Or at least none that I can remember. I do have the memory of catching it on TV be4 when I’m a kid, but I can’t recall anything else abt Sailor Moon. But anyway me and my lil sis decided to give it a shot.

    Aaannndddd…… Me and my lil sis more or less said: “This is even more Precure than Precure itself!” while we are watching this. (Well, Precure is what I think is my first magical girl anime among several shows) We pretty much tsukkomi our way through the entire thing.

    Design wise, I find the throwback to the older art style to be rather jarring since I was introduced into the anime by watching the more recent shows. Though animation/art style wise, I definitely prefer the new anime over the old one after taking a glance at the old Sailor Moon. Also for some reason, the “elder women trying to sound like a teenager” is rather obvious here and it get a little earbleed after a while. Which is weird since I don’t usually have an issue with that.

    Characters and plot wise, its…… pretty standard as far as magical girl plot goes. (So far anyway) Which is understandable since this is one of the anime that popularize the magical girl concept. But I can’t help to loled at Tuxedo Mask wearing a tuxedo in the broad daylight XD SUBTLETY! Also am I the only one who is legitimately shocked at the initial appearance of “mum”?

    To sum up, I find it to be decent enough of entertainment to consider checking out the future episodes. I hope I will be able to enjoy the ride and be part of the experience that I missed out when I was younger.

    • thorgriim says:

      Me and my lil sis more or less said: “This is even more Precure than Precure itself!”

      Haha nice, me and my brother where the same when we watched it, that transformation scene, the opening video.. totally precure ness! yes we are guys and like Precure.. heartcatch is my favorite one hehe.

  7. Joojoobees says:

    I didn’t “grow up with” Sailor Moon, but I caught an episode or two while I was young enough to appreciate it. As an American with almost no access to anime, the show did stand out for its sense of style, and the arcing stories between the characters that really was unlike something you would see in American shows made for kids at the time.

    I rather like the new art style. I also like MomoClo, so I think they are a good choice for the OP/ED, although the ED is the kind of sappy Jpop you would get with an early 90s anime.

  8. Foshizzel says:

    Like everyone else has been saying I didn’t grow up with the series even though I knew what it was! I do remember waking up for school watching Sailor mood and Pokemon on TV and they were dubbed, but as for the new one wow I can not get past Usagi’s Japanese voice! Holy crap it reminds me of DBZ Kai and Goku’s Japanese voice wow it hurts my ears! That and I know Usagi’s actress worked on Suit Precure as the fairy/cat Hunny which I also hated LOL

    Character designs are a bit strange to get used to but it works I think it just breaths new life into it and sort of updates it much like Fairy Tail which isn’t as dramatic of a design shift of course hahah

    While Kara mentioned Precure ill agree when it gets compared to Sailor moon they are vastly different because obviously there IS a romance in Sailor Moon while Precure is more about friendships; however take that bit out of Sailor moon and you have the same set up with the girls saving the universe from evil.

    I shall watch more because I wanna hear Kanemoto Hisako as Sailor Mercury! I sorta expected her to voice Sailor Jupiter because she voiced Cure Peace who uses lightning attacks just like Jupiter <3

  9. thorgriim says:

    Awesome, I like this seeing everyone’s “grew up with shows”. Like Fosh and others, yes we watched, so I guess we did sorta grow up with it, but we really didn’t sit down and watch it, we where getting ready for school so it was more background sound haha. Our start was DBZ,Gundam, Macross for very old school, but didn’t spend too much time with Macross. Toonami was what we watched growing up, anything and everything on that network, come home from school watched Toonami.

    So for Sailor Moon, my reaction was “awesome a remake maybe now ill get to watch the whole thing” however first episode I was ehh about it, its only 2 episodes a month so ill watch it and see if some of it i remember from the original. The character designs are not that great to me, it’s almost hard to look past but i’m sure it will grow on me. Voice acting, Serena/Usagi is bearable at best, i mean its not super ultra terrible, I’m just use to the dub voice action so this will be…uh..different, just like fosh says about DBZ Japanese sub.. ugh.. goku and gohan terrible! lol.

    I consider myself a magical girl fan, But my first ever “Liked and Watched” magical girl anime was Cardcaptor Sakura. watched bits and some episodes here and there but also didn’t grow up with it. Anyways with the cast and remake I’m excited to see how this one does, bring on the romance the drama and near death experiences?

    For those who care about Voice Actors-
    Sailor Mercury / Ami Mizuno – (Hisako Kanemoto) *Smile Precure’s Cure Peace; Ika-musume
    Sailor Mars / Rei Hino – (Rina Satou) *Railgun’s Mikoto
    Sailor Jupiter / Makoto Kino – (Ami Koshimizu) *Kill la Kill’s Ryuuko; Suite Precure’s Cure Melody
    Sailor Venus / Minako Aino – (Shizuka Ito) *Hayate no Gotoku’s Hinagiku

    the Director and Producer worked on One Piece and Precure so I’m sure we will get a lot of comparisons to precure for sure.

  10. Masu says:

    i haven’t commented on this site in a long time, but after reading the comments here i felt like i had to toss my two-cents into the mix. a lot of what has been said here has been mirrored in my personal life with people i regularly talk anime with.

    so far i have seen a divide between those who “grew up on sailor moon” and those that hadn’t. i guess i would fall into a tertiary group. while i wouldn’t say i “grew up on sailor moon,” i have watched more than just a few episodes while i younger, so much so that i can recall certain story-arcs and the general flow of the story. it was never a show that i came home eager to watch or a show i found myself heavily invested in; that was reserved for the likes of yu-yu hakusho, rurouni kenshin and db/dbz.

    i approached this show like i would any anime that was “new” to me, with an open-mind and the patience to see where it would take me. so far i’ve liked what i’ve seen.

    but there is a comment that i hear quite too often about the show, even when it has only aired one episode, “why all the hype?” and i think that question has yet to be answered sufficiently. on one side i’ve heard it’s because it’s a great show from a great franchise. on the other i hear dismissive comments about how rather dull the show is. i think all of those miss the point. the real reason why there is so much hype for the show is because this reboot is happening so many years after the franchise has seemly faded from the current anime limelight. After so many years, now is the year that this new anime series airs. that, and possibly only that, is the reason why there is so much hype. we are revisiting a legendary franchise. you’d get the same reaction with any show that has such a long standing following. just look at the antics the new dbz movie announcement has caused.

    tbh, i very much appreciated the fact that they used Usagi as the main character’s name. I also really liked her voice; she as always an idiot in the previous anime, now she finally sounds like it. my ex was possibly the first person i met that was heavily invested in the show (while she was still a young girl). i remember seeing dozens of gekkan on her shevles since she would buy the serializing comic each month as it came out. she would constantly bemoan the change in the main character’s name. she also said that the voice in the anime, for some reason or other, never quite matched the voice of Usagi she had in her head (while she read the manga). i guess just by way of knowing her i was set up with the perspective i have on this current series.

    i guess that brings me to reasons why i will follow this show, as there are a few:

    first, i like what i’ve seen so far, even if it is a little outside of my normal genre of show. i want to see where this anime will take me, want to see if i will really, perhaps finally, become a fan.

    second, and this is something i do a lot when i hear that a book/comic/etc. i’ve read is getting a movie/series, i want to see if the series will throw in moments purely for the source-fans. honestly, i dont like the use of that gimmick because it serves no other purpose but to make longtime fans wet their panties, but i want to see if this show does it regardless. not that i know enough of the source material to spot these when im watching it, but im sure i’ll read an article or comment somewhere that explains the easter eggs.

    third, and by far the most important, is that this show is history in the making. like it or not, this is the current chapter of a franchise 20+ years in the making. we are talking about THE legendary franchise of mahou shoujo, one often cited as both popularizing the mahou shoujo genre as well as revitalizing it. it’s also pretty much set the standard, as well as some of the idiosyncratic themes, of the genre. if you call yourself an anime fan of any merit you’d be a fool to pass up on this piece of history.

    that said, i am excited for this week’s episode.

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