Item one: ACEO - Princess Serenity
Right away, it’s clear that this artist is an inking master. The fine lines of Serenity’s hair and dress(? tunic? bedsheet?) are remarkable. The filigree fence in the background is like magic it’s so ornate. The coloring is soft but not bland, not quite pastel but not quite full-powered colors.
It is all even more remarkable when you realize the size and medium of the picture. Serenity here is 2.5 by 3.5 inches, in Copics, Prismacolors, and white paint. Well damn.
Item two: Sailor Moon - Protecting
This one is pointedly older than the other two pictures by this artist that I’m showcasing here, so the style is slightly different. However, I’m a real sucker for characters standing in water, so in it goes!
It’s the details I love in this picture. The mixture of Eternal Sailor Moon and the Moon Kingdom isn’t one I see very often, so it seems pleasantly refreshing. The fact that ESM has the right wing and Serenity the left wing of a single pair is a surprisingly subtle and beautifully-executed piece of symbolism. Of course as I said, I love it when characters are standing in the water. The fact that Serenity is barefoot and her dress is trailing (despite her efforts) makes it all the better.
Item three: Calla Lily - Seiya
It is a rare day when I see a drawing of Seiya that momentarily takes my breath away. The soft but revealing cloak of flowers is so elegant. The nudity is done very tastefully, I think - I didn’t even really notice that she was nude until the second time I looked at the picture. Her expression is a little un-Seiya-like, somehow making me wonder if this is supposed to be an older Seiya than we see in Stars.
Oh, and remember what I was saying about the size of these pictures?
I don’t even have the words to express how awesome I think this is!
Day Twenty-Nine - Senshi or Starlights?
That face up there? That’s me right now.
First: The Starlights are Senshi. They are not the Senshi of the Solar System, but they are in fact Senshi nevertheless.
Second: Aggghh, how do I choose?!
Well, despite my protestations, I actually have a definitive answer to today’s question. That answer is: the Senshi of the Solar System.
The reason for this is pretty mathematical and ultimately simple. The Solar System Senshi were in two hundred episodes of the anime. The Starlights were in only twenty-eight.
The Starlights are some of my favorite characters in Sailor Moon. However, we had only one episode to get to know the Starlights for every seven+ that we had with the Solar System Senshi. And for that reason, the Senshi of the Solar System are my pick.
Day Twenty-Seven - Scout you are most like
This was a really hard decision. None of the Senshi seemed to be all that much like me. I look just like Makoto. When I was young I empathized the most with Makoto, and later Haruka. Michiru’s assorted artistic aspirations are not too dissimilar from my own.
Then I landed on Seiya.
Seiya is not a character I ever really compared to myself to. He’s flirty, smooth, and in the football club. That’s kind of the opposite of me! I’m generally cold, abrasive, and extremely lackadaisical where sports are concerned. (I guess that’s basically like Yaten!)
But once I get to thinking about it, I realize we do have some surprising similarities. Like my comparison to Michiru, we share some artistic aspirations (although mine fall more on the writing/drawing side of things). We both love music, we both fall in love a little too easily, and we are both capable of being extremely driven to the point of near obsession. In the Materials Collection, Seiya is noted as having “unkempt hair”, as well as being “not very understandable” and “a worrying super-pessimist”, which are all traits I possess.
To address superficial similarities, we’re both the same height, we have hair of about the same length, and we are both born in the sign of Leo. And on a really weird note, we’ve both ended up doing musicals under the direction of really psyched-up Catholic directors.
But what really seals the deal is all weird gender and sexuality questions circling around this character. NOTE: IF THESE ARE HOT-BUTTON ISSUES FOR YOU FOR ANY REASON, PLEASE JUST SKIP AHEAD TO THE SECTION PAST THE NEXT SCREENCAP. This blog doesn’t typically put so much focus on these topics, but this is a big part of why Seiya is my choice for Day 27, so I’m deciding to include it.
In the anime, Seiya is male as a civilian and female as a Senshi. No matter which form Seiya is in, his/her mannerisms and affections for Usagi remain the same. The whole thing isn’t treated as comic, either, and all the gender-flipping is left totally unaddressed. As someone who identifies as 50% male 50% female genderqueer (and 50/50 bisexual, at that), I really feel a lot of empathy toward Seiya. Even back before I knew the word genderqueer or that it was even a thing I felt this way - the only difference is that it was harder to put into words.
So yeah, Seiya Kou AKA Sailor Starfighter is the Senshi I am most like.
Day Twenty-Four - Sailor Moon moment that makes you cry
Well then. I have to say I wasn’t looking forward to filling today’s prompt. I don’t like to be sad, after all. But somewhere in the course of getting ready to write this mini-article, I ended up watching an episode and a half of Stars and intently perusing the screenshot galleries for six more episodes after that. So now it’s one in the morning and I am running two and a half hours late.
So, as for today’s moment: I have chosen the last third or so of episode 188 (An Invitation to Terror! Usagi’s Night Flight).
Throughout Stars up to this point we have witnessed Usagi and Seiya clinging to each other emotionally. It seems as though neither of them have really admitted this to themselves, nor have they considered why this is. Sitting here outside the TV, it seems to me as though Usagi is finding comfort in Seiya due to Mamoru’s absence, whereas Seiya is drawn to Usagi because of how her power and temperament are similar to that of his Princess.
This scene, as far as I’m concerned, serves as the crux of the Stars series up until about episode 195. Sailor Aluminum Siren manages to get everyone in an enclosed space and tries to acquire Usagi’s star seed - the Silver Crystal. Seiya can’t take the pressure of the situation (especially considering he had just promised to Usagi that he would keep her safe) and transforms in front of her. Taiki and Yaten follow suit.
The three fend of the attacks of the Phages and try to shoo the other girls away. The four Guardian Senshi and Usagi then transform in front of them.
It’s hard to appreciate this scene and how powerful it is in context just from my cut and dried description. It signifies the end of friendships that had been growing for sixteen rather intense episodes. But even more than that, it is the moment Seiya and Usagi are torn apart.
Even if you don’t ship these two characters - and I haven’t for a few years now - it’s clear to see how the two were keeping each other emotionally upright. For the next several episodes, without each other to lean on, Usagi and Seiya both succumb to their loneliness and grief.
Even in season one, when Mamoru is injured and kidnapped, even in season two when he breaks up with her, or at the end of the Nehellania arc when he grows cold and distant, Usagi isn’t thrown into such a deep blue funk as she is starting at the beginning of episode 189. Seiya, for all that we don’t know him as well as the star of the show, seems to fare no better.
In truth, I suppose my “moment” for today is actually the entirety of episodes 188-200. Almost every event in those thirteen episodes can put tears in my eyes. But it all starts right here on the plane. That is why this scene is my choice for “Sailor Moon moment that makes you cry”.