Naoko Takeuchi is an avid fan of fashion, the following are a few inspirations fukufashion has discovered.
Setsuna - Chanel 1992
Hotaru - Thierry Mugler Fashion Week 1992
Calaveras - Christian LaCroix Fashion Week 1992 and 1993
Koan - Christian LaCroix Fashion Week 1992
Black Lady - Yves Saint Laurent Opium perfume
Serenity - Christian Dior 1992
Naoko, my queen
Naoko’s Black Lady illustration is based off of Yves Saint Laurent’s “Opium” perfume ad.
Headcanon: After defeating a youma, they whip out a camera and start taking pictures. They stand on it triumphantly and snap away.
Continuing the headcanon: It was Minako’s idea. She has a celebrity facebook page set up for Sailor V and wanted to change the profile picture.
oh my god someone write sailorvenus and tony stark trying to out-do each other
…I’d buy tickets to see that. :)
One of the most beautiful Sailor Moon pieces I’ve ever seen
The strength of characterization in Sailor Moon is, in my opinion, what has made it such an enduring series. When we were children, we chose our favorite and used her to represent who we were and who we hoped to be. And there was such a diversity of choice—they’re tomboys, wannabe idols, obsessed with video games, brilliant students, lazy students, quiet, exuberant and everything in between. Today, when I reflect upon the cast, they feel like sisters—to each other, and to me. So I’m sitting here, beginning a series where I intend to focus on each senshi individually, facing the question of who to begin with. And suddenly, it’s obvious: Makoto.
Makoto is a wonderful symbol of what makes the characters of Sailor Moon so lasting—she fits no formula, she bucks gender conventions—but I don’t want to reduce her to that. In and of herself, Makoto is such a unique, emotionally resonant character. She’s a bundle of contrasts, but she never feels contrived, like her traits were carefully curated by a writer seeking to create a Quirky Girl Character. She’s organic—like a real person with a real, varied personality. She’s the bruiser of the team, with her penchant for hoisting enemies over her head only to slam them to the concrete. Her character design, with its long skirt and curly hair, hearkens back to the sukeban, or “delinquent” girl—and indeed, she is rumored to have been kicked out of her last few schools for fighting. Makoto is tall and tough and will finish a fight with her fists if she has to.
But Makoto is also a person who wears tiny pink rose stud earrings and has a story in the manga devoted to how she can’t stop buying cute shit for her apartment. Makoto is a person who swoons over romance novels and dreams of baking her husband meatloaf and wants to open a flower shop someday. She prepares lavish feasts for her friends and insists, blushingly, that it was nothing. She seeks to live a life as soft, romantic, and sweetly-scented as possible. And she’s never judged for it. She is never mocked as a shallow, frivolous airhead consumed by, as the scolder might sniff, the sort of superficial nonsense girls like. Nor are her more classically masculine traits denigrated as improper or embarrassing. She is, like her sisters-in-arms, a person in all the untidy, beautiful complexity that implies.
Moreover, Makoto is allowed to be weak. She is allowed to be an ass-kicking, flower-arranging, tea-sipping soldier of love and justice who maybe doesn’t feel so good about herself all the time. She occasionally regards her more boyish traits with embarrassment and panics at the sound of airplanes, scarred, as she is, from being orphaned by a plane crash. She doesn’t always look in the mirror and see someone who emerged triumphant from tremendous sorrow, someone who is only made more wonderful by her unconventionality. And that’s okay. The story honors her insecurities without validating them. No one has to swoop in and save her, nor are her moments of self-doubt used to diminish her. Her lapses in confidence, in fact, strengthen her—she roars out of them ready to fight anew, flushed with the knowledge that she is, as Mixx translated it back in the early 2000s, “butt-kicking Jupiter.”
Makoto is brawny. Makoto is delicate. Makoto is, at times, unsure of herself. And while, in the hands of a lesser author, she might have been a cringe-worthy joke of a character—OH MY GOD SHE’S SUPER TOUGH BUT SHE LIKES CUPCAKES WOW HOW WACKY!!!—in Sailor Moon, she is simply herself. And that’s beautiful.
(Part one in a series on the senshi.)
Usagi is a great character. We watch her grow from a clumsy, lazy, self-centered teenager into a fearless goddess of justice who takes down the force of chaos itself. But the great thing is? She doesn’t stop being the girl we met back in chapter one. Sure, she’s indomitably powerful and her teardrops turn into the universe’s most potent energy source, but she also likes video games and donuts and napping and she gets crappy grades on tests because instead of studying, she was playing video games and eating donuts and napping. She whines about having to study for high school entrance exams, then stops a Texas-sized asteroid from slamming into Tokyo. Also, she was totally having sex with her star-crossed-reincarnated-prince of a boyfriend.
J.K. Rowling once made a really interesting point about the Narnia books (which I have not read): “There comes a point where Susan, who was the older girl, is lost to Narnia because she becomes interested in lipstick. She’s become irreligious basically because she found sex. I have a big problem with that.” Takeuchi avoided this in Sailor Moon with such deftness and grace that I’m only fully realizing it now, at 22. Usagi and Mamoru were totally boning—there are all kinds of dreamy, gauzy artbook pictures of them together in bed or discreetly covered in feathers, not to mention the penultimate scene of the manga, where they wake up in a (seriously awesome) bed together all naked and cuddly. Moreover, check out the illustrations of Usagi in lingerie and just straight up topless that Takeuchi busted out for her self-published artbook. Usagi is pure-hearted, but she isn’t “pure” in the archaic sense. She’s sexual. And I love that she can be both. She’s the amaranthine avatar of goodness and love and serenity in the universe—she is every cherished ideal we hold of what it means to be a “magical girl.” She stands for truth and freedom and hope. She wears floaty pastel clothes and enormous pigtails and her weapons are covered in hearts and stylized angel wings. She’s often drawn with angel wings herself! And she has sex. It doesn’t make her dirty, or suddenly inappropriate as entertainment for young girls. She doesn’t lose her power or her magic. She is a multifaceted young woman who loves sweets and comics and vanquishes the forces of evil and also has sex.
And the thing is, this kind of attitude in entertainment helps everyone. It’s not just very sexually active girls who need characters like Usagi, or even just girls in general. I was a prudish kid who didn’t have her first kiss until the age of 18 and this particular aspect of the manga has always stuck with me and informed my attitudes about sex. Whoever you are, however you handle your sexuality—it never makes you dirty. You can be queen of the mahou shoujo and have sex and wake up the next day to slaughter the wicked hordes with your bunny-bedecked Magic Rainbow Sparkle Sword. You can do both. You can be both. One does not invalidate the other.
There are many, many things I love about media aimed at girls and there are many, many series I enjoy the “girly” trappings of and many, many series that make my life better for having them.
But there are far too few that show sex as being a positive thing, that show sex does not mean a loss of purity, that growing up does not mean corruption. Too often, the idea of a woman growing up seems to mean she loses whatever it is that makes her good and pure, that being an adult means she’s corrupted, even just a little bit now.
So, when we see Neo-Queen Serenity in the future, still ruling and still being powerful and still being pure, despite that she’s fully grown and married and has a child now and has clearly had a whole bunch of sex, that’s a really an amazing thing to see.
This post is absolutely beautiful to see and I love the response it’s getting. Liking frilly things and wearing lipstick and having sex with your boyfriend doesn’t mean the end of being powerful and fighting the bad guys and being pure-hearted enough to do it. A+++ for this post and for Naoko.
And here are all the pretty soldier naval officers of your choice. With a bonus.
All of them were tweaked/cleaned up in some way or another. Some of the designs were reviewed/modified. I also tried to make their planet symbols on the… belt things a bit clearer.
See captions (full view) for details on what was done for each senshi. If you want to compare with/view the originals: