Just forget the words and sing along

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Fighting for Love and Justice

I was just randomly typing things into YouTube last night, and I found this. I'd always been curious to see this.

Sailor Moon always gives me weird feelings. And not for the obvious reason.

It was the fall of 1995. I was done high school and finished a very greuling summer job. And I had no idea what was coming next.

I spent most of my days on the couch, watching TV. I had no plans. No ambitions. Nothing.

And then YTV began hyping the hell out of this new cartoon, Sailor Moon.

I started watching it. I was instantly drawn in by its complex mythology. What can I say? Sailor Moon became my soap opera. I started planning my days so I'd be home in time to catch it. I was devouring everything I could get my hands on in regards to the show. And since this was still a pre-Internet time, it was tough to get my hands on stuff.

A few months of doing nothing but sitting around on the couch eventually led my parents to hand down an ultimatium: get a job or go back to school. My applicaiton to Augustana was in the mail the next day.

But yeah. As good a show as Sailor Moon is, it always reminds me of those days where my life was quite literally going nowhere fast. It is a relic from the one stage in my life where I can quite accuratly say I was accomplishing nothing.

Nowadays, my fandom in Sailor Moon only seems to pop up in moments of despair and despondence.

So, as you can imagine, I had another brief flare-up of Sailor Moon-mania during my days at Extra Foods. I remember that the first movie was dubbed and released, and renting it after work one night. I was so inspired by that moviesthat I sat down and wrote the most brilliant paragraph I'd ever written. I'd hoped to turn it into the most brilliant column ever for my website, but I never did. Nothing I wrote measured up to the brilliance of that first paragraph. I'm fairly certain I deleted it in my last hard drive purge.

So you'd think that when I was in Japan and the whole thing started going sour, I would have been deep into Sailor Moon again, what, being so close to the source and everything. But, no, actually. There was a lot in Japan to keep me entertained and distracted without falling back on old habits.

But I'll never forget discovering Sailor Moon on Japanese TV. It was on at 6:30 on Sunday morning. Nothing said "Japan" more than seeing Sailor Moon on Japanese TV. And, on Japanese TV, it looked so much like, say, the Spider-Man cartoon from the 1960's. It was so scratchy and beat up, in a manner that says, "Yeah, this TV station has been showing this forever."

And I was only up at 6:30 on a Sunday twice: once to hit onsens in the mountains with friends, and the other to hit Tokyo DisneyLand. As I said, lots of things besides Sailor Moon to keep me entertained and distracted in moments of despair.

But I still got a smile out of going to Toys R Us in Japan and seeing a complete aisle of Sailor Moon toys...much like the Barbie aisle here in Canada. And the video store, where there was a wall in the cartoon section that was floor-to-ceiling Sailor Moon. Every episode ever.

I'm still kind of ashamed to mention that I was once into Sailor Moon. There's lots of weird perceptions out there.

I was told this story of a female fan at Augustana. She was showing off her collection of Sailor Moon merchandise and detailing her love of the characters to a Japanese foreign student. This Japanese student just looked at this otaku like she was from Mars and finally said, "You know that only dirty old men like that show this much, right?"

When I admitted my love of Sailor Moon to one of my co-workers in Japan (she was an American, not Japanese), she just looked at me quizically and said, "Sailor Moon...isn't that just a porno with all the sex scenes cut out?"

No. No it's not.

But there you have it. It's considered by many to be a show that perverts watch. It reminds me of a time I was consumed by emptiness.

But I still look in on the adventures of the Moon Princess from time to time.

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