My love for Sailor Moon runs deep and strong. It burns brighter than a thousand suns. It cannot be expressed in this one post, nor will it. This explanation of why Sailor Moon means so much to me will serve as a prelude to my new series of blog posts!
Growing up, I felt distant from my classmates and had little to no friends. I had a hard time because I lacked the confidence and language skills (Vietnamese is my first language) to communicate with people. Then, I began watching the Sailor Moon series in 2000, when it had already been completed. The show helped me not only improve my English, but also connect with people. Sailor Moon had a major influence in my life, teaching me about friendship, feminism, and justice.
Sailor Moon and the Sailor Soldiers1 always fought for what was right, protected what and who they loved, despite heartbreaking/muscle-aching pain. They taught me to embrace my femininity, and to view it as a source of my strength, instead of a weakness. Sailor Moon was the only series I saw at the time that showed that women have the ability to kick ass, not so much with violence but with the power of love! Sailor Moon inspired me to be kind and uplift, not only my friends, but strangers as well.
Not to mention at the end of each DiC2 English dubbed episode, there was a short segment that featured the Sailor Soldiers rehashing life lessons they learned from the events of the episode. They touched on dieting, exercising, relationships, recycling, and honesty among other things. Some of their more crucial lessons included being independent, being kind to others, taking care of yourself, respecting yourself, and standing up for your beliefs.
As I got older and rediscovered my love for the series, it helped me through overcome my depression. It was the only thing that gave me strength to face my problems, if not living. Watching Sailor Moon again gave me the strength to keep smiling and to continue to walk out my door each day. Sailor Moon taught me to never give up and keep trying, even if the whole universe is against you. And I did. Hell, I probably wouldn’t be around today if it weren’t for Serena’s2 bright attitude towards everything, even when times were tough. She showed me that love and justice can defeat all evils; and that if you believe in something with all of your heart, you can achieve anything you want.
Moreover, Sailor Moon helped me better myself as feminist. I always thought that all the Sailor Soldiers were really independent and liberated. They interacted with the world around them with the freedom most usually see men have. In fact, the freedom of women to make their own decisions and mistakes (something highly valued by feminists) is highly emphasized. Take Sailor Moon for example: She acts however she likes and chooses whatever she wants with little to no influence of others. Her ability to do so sends a message to young girls—that they can deviate from the norms and paths set by others if they want to. They can just be girls who have the power to be magical.
I owe Naoko Takeuchi an enormous THANK YOU for creating this positive and empowering series.
1 I have recently began to call the Sailor Senshi “Sailor Soldiers,” because the term “Scouts” is not strong enough and the term “Guardians” is an incorrect translation of senshi.
2 Because I primarily watched and rewatched the DiC version, I will (unfortunately) use the American names DiC gave the characters.