This is Naoko Takeuchi's original vision for Sailor Moon. When asked about the differences between the anime and manga, she replied that the anime's staff was men, while her story was told from a women's perspective- by girls, for girls and about girls.
(Especially obvious since the manga lacks a lot of the male gaze and has none of the nude transformation sequences or skirts flying up the anime boasts, as well as other things)
(and don't get me wrong, the anime is fantastic and feminist as well, and did some things better than the manga. But that's not what we're focusing on!)
This is a story about women- tons of women. Every personality type you can imagine. Young women, old women, queer women, straight women, ditzy women, brainy women. This is story about the bond of friendship between these women and how they are the most powerful people in the universe.
Sailor Moon is classic superhero stuff- eldritch villians, secret identity drama, the power of friendship, face-melting horror, epic battles- but it's set in a world where teenage girls are the greatest heroes.
This is a story where for once, it is the guy (Tuxedo Kamen) who gets captured and brainwashed and killed and resurrected and rescued over and over again by his girlfriend. He's unashamed about it too, suavely thanking her for saving him yet again, rushing to alert her when he spots trouble, flatly tells her that he doesn't have her powers and he got in over his head, it's up to her to save the day. He worries about being a burden on her, he is repeatedly in awe of how strong she is and openly praises her for her power and when asked if Sailor Moon is strong? He unflinchingly replies "she's invincible" And she worries that he'll get hurt, and vows to always protect him. This is not to say he's not important to the plot and doesn't get his moments to shine- he does so, much more often than in the anime. He just maintains a open and sweet relationship with her, well aware that she's just...
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