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Happy 2nd Birthday Shojo Power!

Eternal Sailor Moon happily eats a chocolate cake (90s anime)

On July 7th 2015, Shojo Power! celebrated its 2nd birthday. Wooohooo! This past year was full of conventions, posts and more exciting adventures. Onto the statistics!

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A brainwashed Tuxedo Mask holds Black Lady in his arms

Sailor Moon fans have eagerly anticipated the appearance of Black Lady, the villianess version of Chibiusa, in Sailor Moon Crystal. She has finally arrived in all her evil glory and yet many fans have gotten more than what they bargained for–Black Lady passionately kisses the younger version of her father, Tuxedo Mask, not once, but twice. While some fans have reacted to these cringeworthy scenes with disgust, others have tried to poke fun of Chibiusa’s “Electra Complex.” But what is an “Electra Complex” exactly? Does it even exist? And does Chibiusa really have one?

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The transformation sequence podcast logo with three anime faces. In hiragana, it says sukeri runa

Recently, I had the great pleasure to be interviewed on the podcast Transformation Sequence. Kym and Vince were amazing hosts! We covered a bunch of topics such as growing up in the 90s, Sailor Moon & feminism, Japanese culture and even my thoughts on Kill La Kill! Vince also managed to suss out who my favorite sailor guardian is….

Check it out!

You can also listen via iTunes and on their website.


Is Sailor Chibi Moon Too Sexualized?

Sailor Chibi Moon jumps with her hands in the ok sign

When I tell other Moonies I run a feminist Sailor Moon website, often times the very next question is: “What are your thoughts about the sexualization of Sailor Chibi Moon?” At first, I was taken aback. I never thought of Chibi Moon as particularly sexualized. I ask what they mean and they tell me, “Well, she has breasts in the manga.” Meaning, Chibiusa is too young to have breasts.

I don’t think Chibiusa is too young to have breasts. And that’s not just a personal opinion; there’s an reason within the story itself as to why Chibiusa/Sailor Chibi Moon is drawn with breasts–and it’s a reason that might not be obvious to Westerners.

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14 year old Beate Sirota Gordon wear a kimono while sitting in front of a painting of her father

In 2013, when it was announced that Beate Sirota Gordon, contributor to the Japanese Constitution, had passed away, there was scant information available about this singular woman’s life. I detailed my struggle getting my hands the English translation of her memoir in this post. But now, I’m excited to report, there’s not just one book on Beate Sirota Gordon, now there’s two! TWO! (I’m not even being sarcastic!) Publishing this month, we have a biography written by Nassrine Azimi and Michel Wasserman. As someone who devoured Beate’s memoir, I was eager to see what new information this book reveals.

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Kaiju Attack!! Anime Boston 2015 Con Report

Anime Boston 2015 April 3 - 5

Usually Otakon is my go-to con, but after my friends kept raving about Anime Boston, I decided to switch it up a bit and try it out this year.

Me and my Better Half left Friday morning on Amtrak. We love traveling by train!

the skyline of New York City


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Shojo Power! at Anime Boston 2015

Anime Boston 2015 April 3 - 5

Are you excited for Anime Boston 2015?! I sure am! I’ll being doing two panels at Anime Boston this year. Here are the deets:

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Japanese Feminism on the Eve of Sailor Moon

One of my goals with Shojo Power! is to learn more about feminism from the Japanese perspective. I’ve learned about how Beate Sirota Gordon wrote women’s suffrage into the Japanese constitution during WWII. Raichō Hiratsuka became a leader of the women’s rights movement in the early 1900s and fought for women’s suffrage twenty years prior. For my next exploration, I wanted a book with more recent information. This lead me to Broken Silence: Voices of Japanese Feminism by Sandra Buckley. In Broken Silence, Buckley, an Australian academic, interviews prominent Japanese feminists. Unfortunately, the interviews weren’t as recent as I hoped; published in 1997, the interviews in Broken Silence occurred from 1988 to 1991. However, I realized two things 1) This would give a good picture of the state of feminism in Japan just before Sailor Moon appeared in 1992 and 2) many of the topics covered are still relevant today.

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Top Ten Reasons to Love Sailor Moon Crystal

The five inner senshi stand under the Sailor Moon Crystal Logo

The Dark Kingdom arc has concluded with Act 14 and Sailor Moon Crystal is moving full force into the Black Moon arc. The reception of the first arc has been mixed. The animation has never been prettier, but the flaws never more obvious. We’re getting the manga plot line, but all its flaws as well. I’m not sure if I would describe myself as an optimist, but in times of mixed reviews, let’s all do our hearts a favor and spend some time dewelling on the positive. So without any further ado, ten reasons to love Sailor Moon Crystal!

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 Tuxedo Mask leans over to kiss a sleeping Sailor Moon

Sailor Moon draws from many different myths, folktales and legends. The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter. The moon goddess Selene and her human lover, Endymion–just to name a few. Sailor Moon also draws from classic western fairy tales. In Act 4 of the manga, Takeuchi-sensei draws from Sleeping Beauty to render the first kiss between Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask. For feminists, the Sleeping Beauty story is a problematic one and this re-telling is no different.

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