Forgive me, Reader,
For this may be a sin. I have to share an indulgence that I have previously left unmentioned. Not only do I love books, but I love comic books, graphic novels and manga. Now, at the moment, my book count is about 210, however that doesn’t include my graphic novels. You can easily add another 200 to those numbers. With many of them on my bookshelf at home in The Bahamas, I wouldn’t be able to account for them without either going on vacation (which isn’t a bad idea), or recruiting the help of my mother for the time being. (Don’t worry, Mom, I wouldn’t put you through all of that…unless you want to take on a new project!)
Long before this blog, I dedicated myself to only purchase remaining volumes in series that I have already started. That holds true to this day, with the exception of works by CLAMP — a group of four women that write and illustrate many different manga series — I will always buy their new works ❤ And, of course, the re-release of my favorite manga series.
So, since that endeavor of comic-cataloging is a bit unrealistic at the moment, I’ve decided to share some excitement about a recent republishing of a series that got me hooked on drawing, art, Japanese animation, my first serious relationship… really, without this series, I don’t know what kind of person I would have grown up to be.
That series is Sailor Moon by Naoko Takeuchi.
Usagi Tsukino is a 14-year-old girl who is destined to become Sailor Moon, fighting evil forces that are incessantly trying to conquer the world. Joining her fight are Sailors representing each of the other planets: Mercury, Mars, Jupiter and Venus. Later in the series, we discover additional Sailor Scouts including same-sex lovers and transsexuals, both of which obviously caused much controversy and were subsequently squashed in American adaptations.
Honestly, most of the series follows a very formulaic pattern: Kids having fun, something goes awry as evil tries to take over the world, girls transform and vanquish evil, everything goes back to normal. Though the pattern can be very, very repetitive… its success is indisputable. We see this same pattern in other shows like Power Rangers and Powerpuff Girls. (Two more of my favorite childhood shows.) The heroes always strike iconic poses and give a speech (during which, enemies will NEVER try to attack) and throw out some corny one-liners to give off some false confidence until they nearly lose the battle, but then some deus ex machina stuff happens and somehow our hero(es) emerge victorious (or thwarted until they ‘power up’ and THEN defeat the enemy). Why is this so appealing??
In closing: since I bypassed the first publishing of the Sailor Moon series (mostly because they weren’t available in the Bahamas) I am breaking down and purchasing them. This is a series I know and love, and one that I know I will reread and pass along to friends. One of these days, I will have a blog page of my list of graphic novels and manga, but until my next romp in the sun, I’ll just include them in entries as they come up.
If you’re interested in some similar magical girl series, you may enjoy:
- Magic Knight Rayearth
- Cardcaptor Sakura
- Saint Tail
- Revolutionary Girl Utena