Sailor Moon Crystal is the remake of the classic manga.  We already had a 200-episode anime adaptation of it in 1992-1997, but for me that adaptation had two serious problems: 1. Formulaic and repetitive, 2. Unfaithful to the manga (although it was partially due to the manga not being completed before the anime was made).

Fans were excited by the remake, hoping it could make things right.  However, it turns out that many fans are disappointed.  The main cited problems include: lack of character development, drawing glitches, pacing, and plot issues.

Overall I think the graphics are much improved over the 90s version.  I know, because I only finished watching the 200-episode 90s version a year ago.  Most of the time the new version looks beautiful.  Some faces look less than perfect but I don’t think they are unacceptable, although occasionally there are some drawings that look really odd.  The good news is that the Blu-ray version corrects some of these problems.

It is true that most of the characters other than Sailor Moon are not developed at all.  My impression is that the manga did not have too much development for those characters to begin with, but the new anime takes a step further to eliminate them and totally focus on Sailor Moon.  I see this as the greatest problem in this version.

The pacing is heavily influenced by the manga.  Although people think the pacing is very bad here, I definitely prefer this to the slow pace of the 90s version.  As for the plot issues, e.g. Tuxedo Mask causing more problems than he helps is annoying, but many of these originate from the manga.  One cannot really blame the adaptation for the plot in the source.  Those who are disappointed by the plot should rethink what they liked about Sailor Moon in the first place – whether it is the manga, or the 90s anime, or they only like the characters of the Sailor guardians and don’t care about the manga plot.

Is Sailor Moon Crystal a good anime?  The severe decline in viewership perhaps provides an objective answer to this question.  There are definitely other anime with better overall quality and less flaws.  My perspective is simply this: Sailor Moon is a classic manga, the non-faithful 90s anime already had a chance to improve upon it.  Now I only want a faithful adaptation.  Although not flawless Sailor Moon Crystal fulfils this wish.  I look forward to the next season, although the chance is pretty slim.

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