Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon

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Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon
PGSM Cover.jpg
The Five Sailor Senshi
Genre Magical girl, Sentai, Tokusatsu
Created by Naoko Takeuchi
Written by Yasuko Kobayashi
Directed by Ryuta Tasaki
Masataka Takamaru
Kenzo Maihara
Nobuhiro Suzuki
Takemitsu Ishida
Starring Miyuu Sawai
Chisaki Hama
Keiko Kitagawa
Mew Azama
Ayaka Komatsu
Rina Koike
Jouji Shibue
Aya Sugimoto
Voices of Keiko Han
Kappei Yamaguchi
Opening theme "Kirari*Sailor Dream!" by Sae
Composer(s) Michiru Oshima
Country of origin Japan
Original language(s) Japanese
No. of series 1
No. of episodes 49 + 2 specials + Concert (List of episodes)
Production
Producer(s) Koichi Yada
(Toei Agency)
Yūma Sakata
(Dentsu)
Shinichiro Shirakura
Shinya Maruyama
(Toei)
Running time 24-25 minutes (per episode)
Production company(s) Toei Company
Broadcast
Original channel Chubu-Nippon Broadcasting
Picture format NTSC
Original run October 4, 2003 – September 25, 2004
Chronology
Related shows Sailor Moon
External links
Website

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon (美少女戦士セーラームーン Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn?, often abbreviated to PGSM[1]) is a Japanese tokusatsu television series based on the Sailor Moon manga created by Naoko Takeuchi. It is produced by Toei Company.

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon was produced by Chubu-Nippon Broadcasting, airing on that station in Nagoya and on the Japan News Network nationwide from October 4, 2003 to September 25, 2004, and was a retelling of the series' first story arc, albeit with considerable plot divergences.

The opening theme, titled "Kirari*Sailor Dream!" (キラリ☆セーラードリーム! Kirari Sērā Dorīmu!?), is performed by J-pop singer Nanami Yumihara under the name Sae (小枝?).

The series lasted 49 episodes (called "Acts"), and also included two separate made-for-DVD specials, for a total of 51 acts.

Plot[edit]

A great evil, consisting of Queen Beryl, her four generals, and an amorphous evil power named Queen Metaria attempt to steal energy so that Beryl can take over the world.

Standing in their way are the "Sailor Senshi", five middle-school-aged girls: perky Usagi Tsukino, genius Ami Mizuno, paranormally gifted shrine maiden Rei Hino, tomboyish Makoto Kino, and J-pop idol Minako Aino; two beings that appear to be sentient stuffed cats (Luna and Artemis); and Tuxedo Mask, a jewel thief in search of an immensely powerful, mystical Silver Crystal belonging to the Princess of the Moon.

Later in the series, Metalia and Sailor Moon each get too powerful to be reined in, and the conflict shifts to attempting to postpone the inevitable destruction of the planet Earth. (It looks like Earth is plunged into darkness and not actually destroyed per se, but the effect is the same.)

Changes to story[edit]

Queen Beryl as seen in the tokusatsu series, portrayed by Aya Sugimoto. Although Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon is a retelling of the first manga story arc, there are many differences that set it apart from the manga and anime. The storylines are more character-based and driven, focusing on the girls' civilian lives and their connection to the past more than on action sequences. While the first few episodes seemed directly based on anime and manga story lines, by the time Sailor Jupiter had arrived the show was starting to spin off in its own direction. Additionally, Usagi and Rei's relationship is closer in spirit to the manga; while they have their disagreements, it never gets to the heated level that it does in the anime.

One of the largest changes was to the character of Minako Aino, who, rather than being an ordinary girl among the other Senshi, is a famous pop idol. When introduced, she is fighting crime as "Sailor V", and makes subtle reference to this double life in her music. Her most popular song, "C'est La Vie (Watashi no Naka no Koisuru Bubun)" (C'est la vie 〜私のなかの恋する部分?), is a Japanese pun: "Sailor V" (セーラーV Sērā Bui?) and "C'est la vie" (セ・ラ・ヴィ Se Ra Vi?) are pronounced nearly identically. Minako was also debilitated by a head condition that caused her to have headaches, blurry vision, and fainting spells that plagued her through most of the series. She later agrees to have an operation, but dies before the operation can be performed. This was a major change to the Senshi makeup as well, although Minako later returns in the Final Act, after Usagi uses the power of the Silver Crystal to restore the world after she destroyed it while being under the influence of her past life.

In addition to plotline changes, some updating has been done to minor elements of the series, making them more in line with modern culture. For example, in the original anime and manga, there were scenes involving Ami and a cassette tape. In the new version, the tape is replaced by a MiniDisc. Instead of a transformation pen and communicators, each Senshi is given a bracelet and a magical camera phone. Also, their secret hideout is not hidden in a video arcade, but rather in a magic karaoke room.

With the new adaptation of the show, certain characters were modified to give it freshness and originality. New aspects and forms include Sailor Luna, Dark Sailor Mercury, and Princess Sailor Moon. A new antagonist, Mio Kuroki, is also introduced.

Development[edit]

The popularity of the Sailor Moon musicals contributed to the decision to produce another series of Sailor Moon, and Takeuchi was more closely involved in the production than she was for the anime.[2] It was first announced on September 27, 2003, after the final episode of Kirby of the Stars.

Character Differences[edit]

Several points of character differences occurred that altered them as a whole or as part of the plot lines. In some cases, the characters were given new attacks as well.

  • Sailor Moon/Usagi: She appears more intelligent than in other versions of the series, but also more naive. Her newest abilities were the Moon Tiara Boomerang attack which replaced the Tiara throw from the series.
  • Sailor Mercury/Ami: In this series, she wears glasses both in her civilian and Sailor Soldier form. It was later discovered they were a source of security and they were simply glass lenses. Ami's intelligence existed but did not come into play very often, the series instead focused on her shy and insecure nature. Her attacks also differ from her anime counterpart: Mercury Aqua Mist replaces Sabão Spray, and Shine Aqua Blizzard replaces Sabão Spray Freezing."
  • Sailor Mars/Rei: Rei was more distant in this series than in the anime. She is shown to be more level-headed than her anime counterpart, though she has fits of stubbornness.
  • Sailor Jupiter/Makoto: Opposed to the more free spirit of Makoto in the anime, she was more turned in and hurt from her past, not wanting to open herself to love, unlike the anime where she saw every boy as her Sempai. She was also portrayed as a true tomboy, previously Makoto had been characterized as a feminine girl prejudged as a tomboy due to her appearance and toughness. Her powers were directed through her hands in this one, instead of through an antenna in her tiara.
  • Sailor Venus/Minako: The biggest differences were brought to Minako who was a J-Pop Idol in this series instead of a wannabe star in previous incarnations. She was stern, strict and far less boy crazy and kept up the disguise of being the Princess for several episodes whereas in the anime series, she only disguised herself as Sailor Moon once. She was also more serious in this incarnation, the biggest difference being that she died before the finale. As Venus her power of Venus Love-me Chain was similar, but she could use her Crescent Beam attack without calling for it. Also she was the de facto leader of the inner Senshi -after Sailor Moon, opposed to the anime where that responsibility fell to Mars.
  • Jadeite: Beryl's most loyal minion, unlike the aggressive sexist nature of the anime and manga Jadeite, Jadeite is a much calmer and subdued character in the live-action series. His character design is the most similar to his other versions. He takes on a little brother role to the other Shitennou after the end of the main series ends.
  • Nephrite: He is fiercely competitive and proud, his quest was to find the Silver Crystal and the Princess; in the anime he was Jadeite's replacement for stealing energy for Metalia. He also had short fiery red hair in his villain form.
  • Zoisite: A virtuoso of piano which represented his powers and often acted of his own accord without Beryl's authorization or knowledge. As their rivalry entailed

DVD specials[edit]

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon: Special Act[edit]

A sequel to the series, set four years later, that portrays the wedding of Mamoru Chiba and Tsukino Usagi. Before their nuptials they must do battle with Mio Kuroki who has been resurrected and claims to be the new queen of the Dark Kingdom. She kidnaps Mamoru and Usagi and intends to force Mamoru to marry her. However, the Shitennou are revived and help their master to defeat Mio's youma, Sword and Shield. Meanwhile, the Sailor Senshi, minus Sailor Mars who is hospitalized with injuries from battling Mio while in her civilian state, use the Moon Sword provided by Queen Serenity to restore their power, enabling them to transform and defeat Mio. The story ends with Usagi and Mamoru's wedding, and Motoki and Makoto's engagement. This act is an hour long, twice as long as all the other acts.

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon: Act Zero[edit]

The last special made for the series is a prequel of sorts that leads directly to the first episode. Minako Aino meets Artemis and becomes Sailor V on Christmas. She must use her newfound powers to foil a stage magician/jewel thief called Q.T. Kenko and his Killer Girl assistants. Meanwhile, Usagi and her friends decide to dress in their own homemade sailor fuku in order to scare the thieves away from the jewelry store owned by Naru Osaka's mother, (Usagi as Sailor Rabbit, Naru as Sailor N, and their other friends, Kanami and Momoko as sailors K and M) only for Usagi to get kidnapped by Kenko. The actors who portray the Shitennou are featured as the inexperienced police officers group self-dubbed the "Police Shitennou" for comic relief: Captain Kuroi (Kunzite), Officer Akai (Nephrite), Officer Shiroi (Zoisite), and female Officer Hanako (Jadeite). The story ends with Luna coming to Earth, feeling the burn of hitting the atmosphere, to give Usagi her powers.

Mini-episodes[edit]

Act Zero also comes with two mini-episodes. Each one is approximately five minutes long and tells a quick short story. Hina Afterward shows what happened to Hina after breaking off her engagement with Mamoru Chiba. Tuxedo Mask's Secret Birth shows the origin of the Tuxedo Mask persona. It includes a joke-henshin sequence in which, rather than transforming magically, he pulls his clothes on with dramatic flair.

Super Dance Lesson[edit]

A quick video hosted by Luna, Sailor Jupiter and Sailor Moon, that instructed the viewer how to perform the dances from different songs from PGSM. The dances included were for the songs "Romance" and "Here We Go! -Shinjiru Chikara-" (Here We Go!-信じるチカラ-?) Also demonstrated were "C'est La Vie ~ Watashi no Naka no Koi suru Bubun" (C'est la Vie〜私のなかの恋する部分 Seito ra Bui ~Watashi no Naka no Koi suru Bubun?) and "Kirari*Sailor Dream!" (キラリ☆セーラードリーム! Kirari Sērā Dorīmu!?) although no formal instructions were given on how to dance to them.

Kirari Super Live![edit]

A Special Live Event occurred on May 2, 2004 at Yomiuri Hall. This Special Event was held for the 1,000 winners of the Sailormoon Campaign (a contest held earlier in the year, in which viewers had to send in UPC symbols to enter). The event combined musical performances, in which the cast members sang and danced to songs from the PGSM soundtrack, and a dramatic storyline with spoken dialogue, in which the Senshi had to stop the Shitennou from stealing the energy of the audience members. The concert was recorded and released on DVD. It also included bonus behind-the-scenes footage of the performance and interviews with the cast members.

Episode list[edit]

Cast[edit]

Music[edit]

In March and April 2004, singles for each of the five Sailor Senshi were released with image songs on them.[3][4][5][6][7] "Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Original Song Album ~ Dear My Friend" was released in June 2004.[8] A 3-CD box set, "Moonlight Real Girl" was published in September 2004.[9]

DJ MOON[edit]

  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” DJ MOON 1
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” DJ MOON 2
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” DJ MOON 3

Koro-chan Packs[edit]

  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Koro-chan Pack 1
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Koro-chan Pack 2
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Koro-chan Pack 3

Moonlight Real Girl[edit]

  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Moonlight Real Girl Memorial CD Box: Disc 1 Original Soundtrack “Rare Track Collection”: Michiru Ōshima
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Moonlight Real Girl Memorial CD Box: Disc 2 One night limit of the special radio program series “DJ Moon”
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Moonlight Real Girl Memorial CD: Box Disc 3 Minako Aino's original album “I'll Be Here”

Other albums[edit]

  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Original Song Album “Dear My Friend”
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” ~ Complete Song Collection ~

Singles[edit]

  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Sparkling * Sailor Dream!
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Sailor Moon Usagi Tsukino (Miyū Sawai)
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Character Songs Sailor Mercury Ami Mizuno (Chisaki Hama)
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Character Songs Sailor Mars Rei Hino (Keiko Kitagawa)
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Character Songs Sailor Jupiter Makoto Kino (Myū Azama)
  • “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” Character Songs Sailor Venus Minako Aino (Ayaka Komatsu)

Distribution and reception[edit]

Ratings Snapshot from the Newtype USA magazine
[citation needed]
Act 14 January 10, 2004 - 4.0%[10]
Act 15 January 17, 2004 - 3.2%
Act 16 January 24, 2004 - 3.2%
Act 17 January 31, 2004 - 4.7%[11]
Act 18 February 7, 2004 - 3.8%

There are several radio programs called "DJ Moon" based on the show that originated from Chubu-Nippon Broadcasting radio and were broadcast on other radio networks in Japan. The shows were a combination of a radio drama and promotional tool for the TV series, often foreshadowing upcoming events. These shows were later sold on CD.[12][13][14]

The broadcast's ratings were not as high as those of the anime. The show had a high start, but then the ratings declined. They picked up in January 2004 and then again at the end of the series.

In addition to the series, there was also a stage musical performance, Kirari Super Live! by characters on the show. Some footage from the filming of the stage show was used in the television broadcast. A special limited-edition promotional video, Super Dance Lesson, was available for purchase only through order forms found in the magazines Youchien, Mebae, and Shougaku Ichinensei in July 2004.[15]

Notes and references[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]