As a young child, I watched Sailor Moon, the story of Usagi, a young girl, who was chosen to become Sailor Moon, a warrior whom (quite clumsily) fought against evil . She did this being a bit inspired by Sailor V, a similar hero who had her own TV series and even a game in the arcades!
The series continued, more Sailor Scouts joined the team, and then….. SAILOR V SHOWED UP!!! Like…. WHAT?! Maybe as a kid I just went along with it, but … still weird! She joined the scouts and became Sailor Venus! And while the previous scouts started off with episodes focusing on them, introducing them to us, Venus had nothing like that. We were went off to deal with other things. Sure, Venus did get her episodes later on, but it did not feel satisfying to me. Venus came off as an alternative version of Usagi, whom seemed just more focused on being famous, looks and boys. This made her to be my least liked Sailor Scout. That’s not to say I hated her, I simply liked the others more.
Years later when the age of the internet came along, I was reading up on stuff, and… big shocker: SAILOR V HAD A MANGA BEFORE SAILOR MOON!!! I was really surprised by that, I tried to find out more, but I basically stopped when it was confirmed that there never was any anime. However last year I was visiting the best country in the world….. NO, not Japan you Otakus! GERMANY! ❤ There I found a geeky store with a whole bunch of manga on sale! The entire Sailor Moon collection seemed a bit pricey, but the 2 volumes of Sailor V seemed like the perfect opportunity to finally get to know this story! I bought it, and nearly half a year later I finished reading it and feel like sharing my opinion on it.
Sailor V is the story of Minako Aino, a girl who happens to meet a white cat called Artemis, whom reveals to her that she’s the sacred warrior from the planet Venus: Sailor V, and she needs to protect the people of the Earth from the forces of evil!
This manga became popular and the idea of an anime adaptation was proposed, however there was a suggestion of it taking inspiration from sentai shows, and instead of a single heroine, featuring a group. That’s how Sailor Moon was born, however… I feel confused. I don’t have much info on the release dates, but if I go by collective volumes, Sailor V started around 4 months earlier than Sailor Moon, but even having around 3 times less chapters, it still concluded around 3 or 5 months after the sequel series. Ehhh…. WHATEVER!
For years I listened to a couple of fans whom scoffed at me… unlike me, they read the manga! They know how SUPERIOR it is to the anime, and Sailor V of all is the greatest part of the entire franchise! It is soooo dark, just as the author intended, before the higher-ups decided that it needed to be more main-stream. Now I know that these people probably never saw this manga!
Sailor V feels like a PARODY of the magical girl genre! Which… is an odd statement to make. The magical girl genre existed before this, however Sailor V redefined what it could stand for, making fighting and battle scenes a more integral part of it all… and nowadays, this is exactly what people associate with the term. It feels like a spoof, because it is a lighthearted series, that doesn’t often take itself that seriously, and the 4th wall is broken here and there!
I assume some may think that this sounds like a disaster, but it’s actually done in a very nice fashion! Like…. Minako’s obsession with boys, where she doesn’t seem to stop thinking about one, even when it seems natural to do so …… cause he’s dead…….. cause she killed him…… cause he was a demon…… and tried to kill her……. BUT HE WAS SO CUTE!!!!
Minako gets her chance to shine here, and….. that’s odd, because it feels like I should hate her, but the framing makes her very likeable. Minako isn’t too bright, but she’s also not a crybaby, she’s quite athletic, and funny!
Hmmm, if I’m to talk about some negatives… well, nope, this isn’t a real negative, but it’s something that bugs me: this series is full of CLONES! Clones of Sailor Moon chara-….. wait, if they originated here, then …. NEVERMIND!
Some are less blatant, like… Artemis and Luna, the cat-sidekicks, however then there’s characters like Amano, who’s just like Umino. Hikaru looks just like Ami. Minako’s parents look nearly identical to Usagi’s, and Motoki looks just like……. Motoki? Oh, whoops, he’s the same character in both manga, NEVERMIND!
A more annoying issue is that the manga introduces a few things, which are never really explored. I don’t want to get into spoiler territory, so I won’t say what I mean exactly, but there are a few events which feel like they might change everything, but end up being forgotten or hand-waved away. I guess in one case it can be considered a joke, but it felt a bit underwhelming given what possibilities it had!
Ok, whatever, we have 2 stories, the original, and the sequel that became a legendary series, so… which is better? WELL, I didn’t read the Sailor Moon manga, but from what I see online, people seem to say that it was less comedic than Sailor V, so I guess with that in mind….. comparisons are unfair. I love the actual Sailor Moon series, and I love this manga. They’re different, but not in quality, and more in terms of appeal. Sailor Moon gives us the action with some comedy, while Sailor V gives us the comedy with some action. I like both approaches, and do appreciate being able to see how the same author can take the same setup and attempt something more amusing.
If you’re of a fan of Sailor Moon, you will love this manga!
And if you’re a Sailor Moon hater, you will hate this manga!
(Go figure….. also, I don’t like you, you hater!!!)