Sailor Moon: Brief Introduction

Basic Information:

Title: Sailor Moon
Country of Origin:
Japan
Licensed by: DiC Entertainment
First Aired: 1995

Basic Synopsis:

Serena is an ordinary girl, that is until she meets Luna, a talking cat who tells her that she is really the super hero Sailor Moon. Serena isn’t too pleased with this as she much rather do normal girl things than fight monsters, but Luna nevertheless usually convinces her to take action as Sailor Moon. Throughout her escapades, she meets up with other Sailor Scouts and they join together to fight as one team against the Negaverse.

Censorship:

Being one of the first Japanese animated cartoons (or anime) to make it over to North America, Sailor Moon was heavily censored. All explicit reference to Japanese culture were removed and scenes, sometimes whole episodes, were removed if they were deemed inappropriate for children. Examples include episode six, where Serena (or Usagi) transforms herself into an adult women to go into a bar, or Zoisite being changed into a women in the English adaptation to avoid having a homosexual relationship in the show.

As such, with the amount of censorship and adaptation to North American standards, the English adaptation of Sailor Moon stands as a representation of English media and creates an interesting example for deconstruction, especially in the area of what was deemed appropriate for children. For more information about censorship in Sailor Moon visit Sailor Moon’s Wiki page.

Why Sailor Moon?

Sailor Moon was chosen as a candidate for deconstruction because Mina and I, Joanna, grew up on the show and we both instantly thought of it when we decided to focus on child media. Sailor Moon also provides an interesting opportunity for deconstruction on two levels. First there is a comic version (the original) which was written by a women (Naoko Takeuchi) and then there is this animated version that was made by mostly male staff. Second there is the English adaptation with censorship; this added visible layer of censorship creates an interesting opportunity of assessing what North American culture deems appropriate for children. Sailor Moon is also a mixed bag, I think, with regard to being a positive/negative form of child media. What I mean to say is that Sailor Moon has both good or bad things about it and our choices on which episodes and themes to highlight will reflect that. If there is a particular episode or thing about Sailor Moon you want to see featured, feel free to tell us in the comments. I hope everyone looks forward to the next few entries on Sailor Moon.

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