Was Sailor Moon able to obtain the happily ever after she deserved? After you have enjoyed enough Manga and Anime you are able to read between the lines and can see details many may have missed. Through this and other detailed evidence, you are able to piece together what really happened in a particular series. This results in an abstract idea, a thought which doesn’t have a physical existence but can be speculated. Welcome to Anime Abstract.
WARNING: SPOILERS FOR THE ENTIRE SAILOR MOON FRANCHISE
After far too long the final season of Sailor Moon, Sailor Moon Stars has finally been released in America. This release is long overdue considering the fact the series was broadcast over 20 years ago in Japan and the original run of the fourth season of Sailor Moon in America was on Toonami 15 years ago. Unfortunately, now this means fans will get the chance to experience the rather lackluster ending the series produced.
The ending of Sailor Moon Stars did not get the wrap up most fans were satisfied with. After defeating Sailor Galaxia, Usagi (Sailor Moon) is reunited with her comrades. She then says goodbye to the Sailor Starlights (who leave the planet) and shares a kiss with her boyfriend, Mamoru (after basically prying his feelings out) under a full moon. This lackluster ending did not sit well with many fans.
Sailor Moon Stars introduced an element which has left the fanbase torn ever since: A legitimate rival for Sailor Moon’s affections. Sailor Star Fighter (Seiya Kou) is introduced as an idol (rock star), who is in her class, and is crushing on her hard. Seiya genuinely seems like they want to help Usagi as a friend and when she is Sailor Moon. They aren’t a villain trying to kidnap her or hand her over to the enemies, their mission brought them to Earth and they don’t mind the path led to Usagi.
Compare this to the anime version of Mamoru who was shown was being cold, too old (he’s 20 and she’s 16 in Sailor Moon Stars), and not entirely necessary in battle. The jokes of Tuxedo Mask’s uselessness are well known by many anime fans. One of the first two results on Google is an Io9 list of how he’s a worthless character. This introduction and the less than overly romantic last moments between Usagi and Mamoru in the original anime resulted in a Kirk vs. Picard level discussion for fans. To this day debates of the benefits of Usagi and Seiya vs. Usagi and Mamoru (and vice versa) is a common online or at an anime convention.
This wasn’t the case in the original source material. In the original manga, the Mamoru is shown as being very much in love with Usagi, not having as large of an age gap in their relationship (she’s 17 during the Stars Arc in the manga and he’s 19), and is not a completely useless warrior as Tuxedo Mask (he had an energy blast). Their final moments together are filled with fluffy romance. The last few pages of the manga show the two of them getting married and Mamoru reminiscing of just how powerful and strong his new wife is. The contrast between these two endings is staggeringly apparent.
The anime’s ending can’t hold a candle to the original. This is probably why Sailor Moon Crystal is so essential as it allows the original moments of the story to play out as they were supposed to happen. Still, there are merits of the original series, despite how the characters are not always shown to be as competent or deep as they were in the manga. Check out Tuxedo Unmasked, a blog dedicated to writing about Sailor Moon for more in-depth looks at the comparison between the anime and manga. For now when it’s all said and done it’s best to watch for yourself and draw your own conclusions on who Sailor Moon truly should have ended up with.
What do you think of the original anime ending to Sailor Moon? Leave a comment below and let us know.