Last month during my hiatus, I managed to get through a couple of backlog series. Sailor Moon Crystal was one of those. After watching, it got me thinking of why I’ll always be a 90’s fan. The specialness that Sailor Moon is, that just in no way Crystal has.
It’s been too long doing a nostalgia post. wee!!
Now, I don’t need to tell you how popular Sailor Moon is after all this time. Okay, great we don’t have to dive into my connection with this series. I’m a 90’s girl, Sailor Moon gave me Jupiter, that’s it really.
I’m pretty happy to be writing about Sailor Moon. Nostalgia talk don’t happen on my blog enough, so this might make up for it. Upon completing Sailor Moon Crystal inspired me for this post. Now, if your thinking I’ll be dissing Crystal just because it will never be like the original, that won’t be happening here. Though 90s Sailor Moon will always be on top for me. Crystal had it’s own special qualities, which surprised me a lot. That will be for another post to delve into. I’m not a fan that doesn’t wish Crystal to exist, it’s announcement in 2014, received mixed reactions.
My reaction at the time, we get treated to another Sailor Moon series, based from the manga. It was a great, exciting thing and Crystal is one that will join my collection at some point. Equally there are massive differences between the two, but here are three reasons that 90s Sailor Moon – make it timeless for people like me.
When Sailor Moon had defeated the evil, particularly at night during episodes. We are treated to an overlook of city landscapes, illuminating in pretty pastel. This is something you’ll never get in new anime but it’s a treat whenever I’ve re-watched Sailor Moon. To gaze upon this nostalgia fact about Sailor Moon. I’m no expert when it comes to talking about animation but captured city of Tokyo in these pastel colours. It’s something special to look at, bringing a retro vibe. The pastel effect, gives off the liveliness of Tokyo city, it’s hustle and bustle. Yet, also when you look at it, it’s a calm picturesque view.
Crystal animation was hit or miss at points, to say what I’d prefer in animation. 90s Sailor Moon wins, even now seeing this retro, pastels colours – the city landscapes were my favourite, they’re special. Nostalgia screams big.
Moon Baby Protagonist
I’ll be talking specifically here regarding the dubbed voices of Usagi. During my watch of Crystal decided to try the new dub, which cannot lie was not too excited about. I’m a bit stubborn when it comes to the new dub, tried watching with old Sailor Moon – couldn’t make past the first episode. All the other scouts, Luna and Artemis etc for the new dub had no issues with, but when it came to Stephanie Sheh voicing Usagi. I’m not the hugest fan, felt most of the time her portrayal of Usagi was forced. We know Usagi, as this happy, carefree, goofball. Compared to the 90s portrayal of Usagi, it wasn’t there in Stephanie’s voice.
When it came to scenes for example Usagi becoming jealous over Mamoru, especially involving Chibi-usa. It made me pull face saying ‘No, this doesn’t work’. It felt over-exaggerated for me. Rest of the time Stephanie’s performance was fine. The new dub for Sailor Moon, I feel does not work for the original. In Crystal’s case it works really well for the newer generation of fans, coming into anime. Despite what I think about Stephanie’s performance of Usagi, she works for the Crystal series perfectly. As for the Original Sailor Moon, nope can’t get behind her on that one.
When I think of Usagi, Stephanie does not come to mind but 90s Sailor Moon does. 90s voices of Usagi are how we know Usagi. Way back, you wouldn’t realise Usagi had three different voice actors back in the 90s. My favourites were Tracey Moore and Terri Hawkes. Both voices found very similar, but both captured the Usagi we love. Their performances felt so natural, the goofy meatball head, will still know for all of time. Tracey only voiced first 25 episodes but it’s a solid portrayal, shaping at the beginning such a relatable protagonist, we all see ourselves in. When Terri took over, nothing felt like it had changed, Terri brought her own spunk to Usagi character. Terri’s portrayal of Usagi was so fun and uplifting, capturing loving nature of this loveable character.
Linda Ballantyne who took over majority second half of Sailor Moon. Her portrayal of Usagi is quite different, still unsure to this day if I like it or not. Linda’s performance made Usagi character feel more fragile and hopeless than Terri and Tracey. It’s not a bad thing, we got an even more hopeless Usagi but funnier.
Which Usagi voice do I prefer?
I’m sure you know the answer to that. As, sorry Stephanie for me Usagi felt forced and tried too hard. Your perfect for Crystal just not the original. Our 90s protagonist voices, brought the Usagi we know and love, that meatball head. Whom we us girls see in ourselves, or a part of anyway. For me I related to Usagi’s klutziness and want to eat all the time. That’s why original Usagi is special. It’s an obvious thing but doesn’t get mentioned enough.
Crystal was enjoyable for it’s own reasons but comedy wasn’t one of them. I felt Crystal had a more serious tone than the original, there was the odd laugh I had. Sadly not to the point of my lungs hurting, compared to the original. Crystal just didn’t have the great characterisation chemistry that the original characters had. I felt there was the potential for Crystal to throw it’s own comedic flare, but that opportunity was wasted I feel.
Besides this fact, Crystal’s almost non existent comedy, that’s not a bad thing. Whether it’s Usagi’s daily whining, constant silly feuds with Rei or characters hilarious face expressions. It’s something that has me laughing to tears every time, revisiting original Sailor Moon. Where it’s the Dub or Japanese version both possess equal comedic flare. But, the original DIC North American Dub is something special, each individual character personality, we remember for different reasons. One of my favourites beside Usagi was Luna voiced by Jill Frappier. To handle someone like Usagi, who doesn’t take anything seriously, extremely childish. Luna’s posh, British voice, portrays perfectly a voice of authority, it’s why I feel works so well with Usagi and Luna’s hilarious interactions.
Plus let’s not forget kick ass tomboy voice of Susan Roman as Sailor Jupiter, Ah perfection.
Second to the pastel animation, the comedy in the original Sailor Moon is my favourite thing about it. Literally hilarious still and holds up strong even today. You can’t take that kind of magic away.
This post was not all about trodding over Sailor Moon Crystal, going back to say before. I’ll cover in a post what I loved about Crystal. Far as original 90s Sailor Moon goes, these three reasons I talked about, top Crystal any day. But I’m well aware of the obvious differences between the series terms of plot direction and animation. Still 90s wins, muahh!
*In Luna Voice* But, please do down below my darlings let’s have a cuppa. Sit down and discuss civilly. Which series of Sailor Moon you prefer? What do you think makes the original special?
Do hope you guys enjoyed this Sailor Moon post, I’ll cover Crystal at some point as there are some things to say about that one.
I’ll see you all in the next post!!