~ Manga Review: “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” (Volume 1) Written and Illustrated by: Naoko Takeuchi ~
I watched the American cartoon version of Sailor Moon on TV as a young kid and loved it. About two years or so ago, I heard about the reboot and re-watched it with a friend. It was interesting seeing what I remembered and what I forgot. Honestly, it’s still an extremely cute anime. This new version is so clear, but I hate their noses. It causes their faces to look somewhat off, but I got used to it slowly (and after tons of grousing). Being overcome with nostalgia after re-watching this new Japanese anime version, I came to the conclusion that I needed to collect all the sailor moon manga books (in English). I now own the whole set (12 volumes) along with the two extra short stories and two volumes of Sailor V.
As an adult watching Sailor Moon, I found the plot to be uber cheesy and Usagi/Serena to be quite annoying. Yet, I still thoroughly enjoyed it. Anime was a bit part of my childhood. Truthfully, I never actually read the Sailor Moon manga series in its entirety. Therefore, I want to read everything from beginning to end starting with volume one. This makes sense since I have the whole set now.
A fourteen year old girl learns that she’s a Sailor Guardian/Scout and must now find her allies and search for the ‘legendary silver crystal’ before it lands in the wrong hands.
Firstly, I have to admit that since this manga series contains a fair amount of action scenes, I do find myself replaying those sequences in its animated form in my head. I think there were some things that the anime cleaned up and did better. Yet, it doesn’t take away from the fact that this was a great first volume. It sets up the plot quickly and goes straight into introducing our beloved characters. (By the way, Sailor Mercury is my favorite guardian.) The plot is cheesy to the point where I find myself wanting to laugh and cringe. Plus, the dialogue is too straight forward and does more telling than showing. However, the strong theme of friendship and love really touched me. Frankly, there’s bound to be at least one (probably more than one) Sailor Guardian you’ll find yourself relating to or rooting for. Yes, the main character is a huge cry baby, but the kindness she displays in befriending those who have difficulty making friends is absolutely beautiful. I didn’t realize this until watching the reboot that Sailor Moon’s allies/friends are all outcasts with little to no friends in different ways. The cliffhanger that this first volume ends on makes readers beg for more (even though I already know the outcome). I’m still looking forward to the second volume.
Lastly, it’s going to be difficult giving this book a rating because I am biased – it being a part of my childhood memories. I’ll give it 4/5, give or take a little.
Anyhow, if you own or have access to the Sailor Moon series, read/reread them with me! : ) I’ll see you in the next review for volume two.