- 202 Seasons
Sailor Moon was one of the most popular anime series to come from Japan in the early 1990's. Based on a manga series by the same name, (Bishojo Senshi Sailor Moon as it was originally called) it was shown internationally in countries including the United States. The original manga series was created by artist Naoko Takeuchi, while the Japanese version of the anime was released by Toei Animation, and the American version of the anime was released by DIC. The basic premise of the Sailor Moon series is that a group of teenage girls have been given super powers and are tasked with defending Earth from evil forces. They are led by the titular heroine Sailor Moon, who is also the reincarnated princess of the Moon Kingdom and destined to bring a new era of peace and prosperity to the world. The other Sailor Senshi (or Sailor Scouts as they are known in the American version of the show) are also reincarnated princesses from their respective planets, including Mars, Jupiter, Pluto, Venus, Saturn, Neptune, and Uranus. While the plot of Sailor Moon may seem relatively simple - girls get powers, girls fight bad guys, girls fall in love as girls tend to do - the storyline is actually quite complex. The Sailor Senshi not only fight monsters bent on world domination or destruction, they also fight their own inner selves. The main character Usagi, or Serena in the English version, begins the series as a 14 year old cry baby who is obsessed with food and terrible in school. Throughout the course of the show she shows a capacity for love and loyalty that surpasses her faults. She also learns bravery and sacrifice. Sailor Moon is commonly referred to as a 'meta-series,' and includes five distinctly different storylines. The initial series includes 46 episodes, while the second series - Sailor Moon R - has another 43. Sailor Moon S is slightly shorter at 38 episodes, Sailor Moon SuperS has 39, and the Sailor Stars series is the shortest with only 34 episodes. There are also three animated feature films that serve as companion pieces to the meta-series, including Sailor Moon R: The Movie, Sailor Moon S: The Movie, and Sailor Moon SuperS: The Movie. These films take place at some point within their respective series, though they do not necessarily have any references to the episodes. While the Japanese and international versions of Sailor Moon follow the same basic storylines, some changes to dialogue and content were made when the show left Japan. Character death scenes were lightened or changed altogether in the American version, with the idea of making the show more acceptable to small children. Some fans prefer to watch the series only in its original format, while others are happy to watch it in whatever format is easiest to come by.