Playing: Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn
I will have to apologize in advance - I needed a place to vent my anger.
Though I've seen plenty of animes in my childhood, it's pretty safe to say that Sailor Moon was the very first one that I had truly loved when my maturity had gone from something that just simply wanted action (looking at you, She-Ra... my rewatch of you due to nostalgic purposes was pure agony), to something that actually appreciated stories and characters.
It may no longer be the anime that I love the most (that honor goes to YUA), but it's certainly a close second.
Because of that love, I've watched every incarnation I could get my hands on. Admittedly I have no idea where to get copies of the earlier musicals, but the recent ones are excellent. PGSM still tugs at my heartstrings - that was an incredible adaptation. And all of this is thanks to the original manga, which may not be perfect... Which does have pacing issues at times... But it somehow manages to cover some characterizations/backstories that the original anime did not have, and is thus worth reading.
When they said that Crystal is going to be an adaptation of the manga, I certainly didn't mind it.
When they started to give hints that there's a possibility of there being a Senshi/Shittenou romance, I'm all for it. Goodness knows I'm a sucker for such stories in fanfiction.
What I did *not* expect was for everything to lose depth.
I'll be focusing on Minako here, since she's my favorite character, and it does help that she has the slight advantage of having her story with Kunzite *slightly* more fleshed out than the others, thanks to the Sailor V series. It's been pretty much established in all incarnations that she's the type of senshi who is willing to sacrifice *everything* in the name of her duties. Her dreams in the original anime. Her humanity and health in PGSM. Heck, she even *killed* the people she loved (but were revealed to be enemies) in the original manga.
Crystal started out with her trying to defeat Kunzite. And then suddenly in act 10, she mentions *out of nowhere* that the Senshi used to be in love with the Shittennou, and then she just gave up and allowed herself and her team to be hit by them, all in the name of love.
We've actually seen this type of behavior in other animes before. Someone not willing to fight against another person they loved. But those types of stories usually have *context*. The love between the two characters are fleshed out, so that when the conflict finally arrives, it becomes tragic because the viewers knew exactly how much those two loved each other. In Crystal, all we got was "we fell in love with them in our past lives". That's it. They never even had any interaction in their *current* lives. Why should the viewer care when we weren't even introduced to how this past romance came about?
Even if let's say some backstory was provided... For Minako to suddenly give up like that... She spent how many years of her life trying to defeat evil... She even fought with Kunzite just a few episodes prior... And then this?! What on earth happened? Even if let's say she was affected by whatever past love that was, why did she let herself and/or her team get hit? Why did she give up now after all she's been through? After she finally got allies that could help her? They could have simply avoided that attack and found other ways to get the Shittenou back, but no, they just stood there and ate it. What was that supposed to achieve?
This could have been their chance to deliver a story that was never dabbled upon before by any other reincarnation. A chance for them to show the viewers more information about what happened during the Silver Millennium. How exactly did the Senshi fall in love with the Shittenou when they know it's forbidden? How did intellectual Nephrite fall for brash Jupiter? Rather narcissistic Zoicite with shy, intelligent Mercury? Arrogant Jadeite and proud Mars? Duty-bound, stoic Kunzite and equally duty-bound, but vibrant Venus? What happened that had caused the Shittenou to forego their love and side with Queen Beryl? It's the one topic that many fanfictions strived to answer. And yet Crystal treated it like "it happened, that's it, just accept it".
Gods, even Makoto falling in love with *turtle-loving* Motoki in PGSM was more believable than this.
I sure hope Crystal is not anybody's first introduction to this series. It will certainly make them wonder how Sailor Moon became a classic.