Do you think villains got redeemed too much sometimes?

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Dec 7, 2009
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#41
I have to admit, over the years my opinion of the manga has been going down a lot. There was a time where I was like "the manga is superior, any other opinion is incorrect," but yeah I feel like again and again I keep thinking how rushed it all feels. She had some great storylines but it was like she just trying to speed through them as fast as possible. When you read the DK arc you almost get whip lash lol. Barely know the guardians at all and then bam Usagi is Serenity, bam they're fighting Metalia and then bam it's over and you're barely processing that it's done and then Chibiusa is dropping on their heads.
Barely even known the characters and the arc is over with the generals long dead (oh wait they were important to Endymion?) and new character introduced already.

(Speaking of the generals, Crystal had this amazing opportunity when they were keeping them alive at first, but then the instant they remembered their past they got nuked just like that. Such a shame. There was so much potential there. Would've changed the storyline but who cares, I can't be the only fan who wants more of them.)

I do love Venus with the moon sword, and I think I will always prefer manga Tuxedo Mask (I can't handle the roses XD though Robbie Daymond from the Viz dub is doing a lot to improve my opinion of his anime self lol), but I'm getting more and more appreciation of how the 90s anime is for the most part more developed. You get to know each guardian and you have more time to digest the plot.
They did love redeeming villains a *lot*, but I think that's still more interesting than them being dead after barely even hearing their name.
 
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#42
I think the issue is that Sailor Galaxia’s redemption in the anime had no significance in terms of any character development she has (she actually has none compared to the manga). She spends the entire time brainwashed with the anime not even hinting at it until the very end, which makes her redemption deeply unsatisfying.

With the other villains, this stuff is, for the most part, built on their characterization. For example, we see how much Professor Tomoe loves his daughter to the point that he’d willingly sacrifice himself to a foreign entity. It just gave the conflict a few more hues of gray, instead of just being this black and white conflict.

I think while it’s true the original anime might redeem its villains a bit too much, I prefer that over how completely disposable the manga treats them (with a few exceptions like Sailor Mnemosyne and Sailor Lethe, who happen to be the most memorable).
And the fight sucks, compare to how she had brutally murdered her own sailor and the sailor senshi, there was no beat down to let the audience feel relieved against her wrong doing.

And there was too little about how does she atone for her crime. Like Nephrite and Demande sacrificed their lives for the girl they tried to hurt. Or the four sisters confess and was willing to sacrificed themselves to help.

She could be redeemed yes, but not before the sailor senshi beat her with an epic fight.

I don't think the anime redeem the villains too much, even Stars got reason to do so, just it wasn't handled well compare to the previous seasons.
 
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#43
I have to admit, over the years my opinion of the manga has been going down a lot. There was a time where I was like "the manga is superior, any other opinion is incorrect," but yeah I feel like again and again I keep thinking how rushed it all feels. She had some great storylines but it was like she just trying to speed through them as fast as possible. When you read the DK arc you almost get whip lash lol. Barely know the guardians at all and then bam Usagi is Serenity, bam they're fighting Metalia and then bam it's over and you're barely processing that it's done and then Chibiusa is dropping on their heads.
Barely even known the characters and the arc is over with the generals long dead (oh wait they were important to Endymion?) and new character introduced already.

(Speaking of the generals, Crystal had this amazing opportunity when they were keeping them alive at first, but then the instant they remembered their past they got nuked just like that. Such a shame. There was so much potential there. Would've changed the storyline but who cares, I can't be the only fan who wants more of them.)

I do love Venus with the moon sword, and I think I will always prefer manga Tuxedo Mask (I can't handle the roses XD though Robbie Daymond from the Viz dub is doing a lot to improve my opinion of his anime self lol), but I'm getting more and more appreciation of how the 90s anime is for the most part more developed. You get to know each guardian and you have more time to digest the plot.
They did love redeeming villains a *lot*, but I think that's still more interesting than them being dead after barely even hearing their name.
Yes, the characters were too bland in the manga, save for Usagi and a few more. Many of the villains were like monsters of the day. The anime brought life to many of them, especially the four sisters and Nephrite.

Galaxia and Demande were probably the most well characterized manga villains, I do like Crystal's change on Demande's ending because it fits his character much better.
 
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Apr 6, 2010
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#44
If there were to be a reboot of the 90's anime, one thing I wish for it to do would be to drop hints about the better nature of the villains before their swan song and for the villains who do live to actually stick around. As much as I love the Makaiju arc, I really hate that after learning their lesson, the aliens take the little sapling and go back into deep space. That is a literal 180 from the conclusion where the idea that the Makaiju needs love and the experiences on Earth were critical for the aliens to understand that after spending an endless time alone with only each other...I mean, going off into space means the abandoning of that. Come on!
Well i agree with you, though I would still let them leave and go on their space journey. And than comeback with a kid of their own, that could be Chibiusa and Hotaru, and Chibi's civilian friends, etc. playmate. And the excuse being because they were in space, time moved faster, it be fun to see a little off spring of Ali and An.

Speaking of Chibiusa, one thing I would do in reboot, post Dream Arc, let's have the Quartet show up and be Chibi's classmates, and hang out with her friends, I tell you I always liked that one episode Jun Jun trained that guy friend of Chibi.
 
Aug 16, 2014
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#45
I think the issue is that Sailor Galaxia’s redemption in the anime had no significance in terms of any character development she has (she actually has none compared to the manga). She spends the entire time brainwashed with the anime not even hinting at it until the very end, which makes her redemption deeply unsatisfying.

With the other villains, this stuff is, for the most part, built on their characterization. For example, we see how much Professor Tomoe loves his daughter to the point that he’d willingly sacrifice himself to a foreign entity. It just gave the conflict a few more hues of gray, instead of ju.
I think you explain the reasons I had problems with it.If they show more hints, and her having complicated feelings it would been more believable.They could have her talking to herself more.Maybe a split personality
 

Moon Star

Lumen Cinererum
Jun 21, 2010
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#46
The more I think about Sailor Stars, the more that season kind of pisses me off in the way it handled Galaxia. She presents as an intergalactic sociopath all season, who nukes entire planets and laughs about it because she can, and suddenly literally in the last two episodes we're told that she's actually not doing it, it's all Chaos corrupting her mind, as if that's supposed to erase all the evil she's done.

One more thing, how is Galaxia the most powerful senshi when Sailor Moon has the flipping silver crystal? Doesn't that give Moon the upper hand? She could erase Galaxia from existence if she wanted to, but nope, she must be redeemed because she used to be good once upon a time before she made an astronomically dumb decision. Whatever.
 

Yinggirl

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Jul 21, 2003
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#47
The more I think about Sailor Stars, the more that season kind of pisses me off in the way it handled Galaxia. She presents as an intergalactic sociopath all season, who nukes entire planets and laughs about it because she can, and suddenly literally in the last two episodes we're told that she's actually not doing it, it's all Chaos corrupting her mind, as if that's supposed to erase all the evil she's done.

One more thing, how is Galaxia the most powerful senshi when Sailor Moon has the flipping silver crystal? Doesn't that give Moon the upper hand? She could erase Galaxia from existence if she wanted to, but nope, she must be redeemed because she used to be good once upon a time before she made an astronomically dumb decision. Whatever.

You know, I always wanted to write a fic that after Sailor Stars, Usagi's friends and Mamoru did not come back from Galaxia's onslaught. So it's her and the Three Lights helping civilians rebuild Tokyo. I'm just too lazy for putting effort into doing that fic.
 
Apr 1, 2020
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#48
The more I think about Sailor Stars, the more that season kind of pisses me off in the way it handled Galaxia. She presents as an intergalactic sociopath all season, who nukes entire planets and laughs about it because she can, and suddenly literally in the last two episodes we're told that she's actually not doing it, it's all Chaos corrupting her mind, as if that's supposed to erase all the evil she's done.

One more thing, how is Galaxia the most powerful senshi when Sailor Moon has the flipping silver crystal? Doesn't that give Moon the upper hand? She could erase Galaxia from existence if she wanted to, but nope, she must be redeemed because she used to be good once upon a time before she made an astronomically dumb decision. Whatever.
It could work as long as she gets beaten badly first.
 
Aug 18, 2011
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#49
I would agree that they did. Villains don't need character development. They don't need to have major changes in their personality or goals. They exist to challenge the protagonists. They make the good guys look better. They are obstacles that exist to be overcome. Not saying that all villains fit this mold, but the major ones should. If a villain is reformed and it adds something to the story in the long run then that's fine. Vegeta in Dragonball and Hiei in Yu Yu Hakusho are great examples. I thought the Spectre Sisters reformation was good, because their mistreatment and clear compassion for their enemies made Rubeus and the rest of the Black Moon Clan look despicable. The manga makes them out to be monsters from the very beginning so there was no love lost when they died. I think the same can be said of the Amazon Trio. They weren't even villains, honestly. Just misguided.

A huge problem in the 90's anime was the lack of convincing villains. I struggle to think of examples outside of Metalia/Beryl, Death Phantom, and Pharaoh 90/Mistress 9. Chaos is introduced as a last minute dues ex machina designed to take the heat off Galaxia. That weakened the plight of the Animamates in my opinion, since the purpose of their demise was to make their boss look like a monster. In the manga Chaos is introduced with a clear goal and is revealed as being the direct cause of every conflict dating all the back to the days of Sailor V. In the anime Chaos is simply evil incarnate whose negative energy causes corruption. In the end Chaos is never even dealt with, just driven away. To some degree the same can be said for the Spectre Sisters because the Black Moon Clan in the anime were brainwashed by Death Phantom - similar to Chibiusa - rather than choosing to follow him off their own free will like in the manga. You could interpret Rubeus being a dick because of DP's influence, but I think that example is grey. I'd argue that Nehelenia was more of a misguided bully than a real villain, far from the fiend who tried to literally torture Usagi to death in the manga because her hatred ran that deep. The Witches 5 came off like incompetent buffoons who served as little more than Team Rocket-esque nuisances. Tomoe's redemption was ignored since Hotaru ended up with the Outers anyways. His death in the manga at least served as development for Usagi, since it showed her resolve to destroy evil no matter what form it took. Something her future self wasn't willing to do. The Heavenly Kings and the Amazon Quartet were redeemed and reformed in the manga so they're moot example in this case. The latter actually continued to add to the series though, is the difference.

Galaxia's redemption in the manga is an example of development done right. After realizing that she was powerless to stop Chaos she has a change of heart after Usagi compares her weakness and shortcomings to her own. It wasn't 'oh flash of light and you're good now, because you were never bad in the first place.'
 
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#50
I would agree that they did. Villains don't need character development. They don't need to have major changes in their personality or goals. They exist to challenge the protagonists. They make the good guys look better. They are obstacles that exist to be overcome. Not saying that all villains fit this mold, but the major ones should.

I don't think so. Villains need to have development for the good of the heroes.

If they just exist to challenge the heroes by fights, it would be bland black/white and could easily get bored. Their ideas need to challenge the heroes, let the heroes see the similarity and darkness on themselves, thus creating character depth and further development. It's not black and white and just tools. It's more scary that you find your enemy is also human beings like you. Because you could possibly walk into the same path.

Also villain's redemption could show the power of love/rightness when handled well. Nephrite being a good example.
 
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#51
I don't think so. Villains need to have development for the good of the heroes.

If they just exist to challenge the heroes by fights, it would be bland black/white and could easily get bored. Their ideas need to challenge the heroes, let the heroes see the similarity and darkness on themselves, thus creating character depth and further development. It's not black and white and just tools. It's more scary that you find your enemy is also human beings like you. Because you could possibly walk into the same path.

Also villain's redemption could show the power of love/rightness when handled well. Nephrite being a good example.
Why would they need that kind of development? Development implies a change in goals, ideology, or personality. If a villain changes and becomes similar to the good guys then they are no longer challenging the protagonist. This is the reason Frieza hasn't changed at all in DBS despite being brought back to life. He just acts with restriction because he knows Goku can stop him if he acts out. That isn't boring. The closest example in the SM series to this would be Sailor Chaos. It's stated that she and Cosmos are equally as strong, but it's Cosmos who gave up the fight first. We don't see what happens when she returns to the future, but it's interesting to imagine the battle. The villain doesn't ever have to change for a conflict to be interesting. The protagonist does.
 
Aug 16, 2014
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#52
I don't think so. Villains need to have development for the good of the heroes.

If they just exist to challenge the heroes by fights, it would be bland black/white and could easily get bored. Their ideas need to challenge the heroes, let the heroes see the similarity and darkness on themselves, thus creating character depth and further development. It's not black and white and just tools. It's more scary that you find your enemy is also human beings like you. Because you could possibly walk into the same path.

Also villain's redemption could show the power of love/rightness when handled well. Nephrite being a good example.
I disagree with this.Villains do not need character development to be interesting. interesting villain can just be a just obstical.You can still explain their actions without it being moralistic.
 
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#53
Why would they need that kind of development? Development implies a change in goals, ideology, or personality. If a villain changes and becomes similar to the good guys then they are no longer challenging the protagonist. This is the reason Frieza hasn't changed at all in DBS despite being brought back to life. He just acts with restriction because he knows Goku can stop him if he acts out. That isn't boring. The closest example in the SM series to this would be Sailor Chaos. It's stated that she and Cosmos are equally as strong, but it's Cosmos who gave up the fight first. We don't see what happens when she returns to the future, but it's interesting to imagine the battle. The villain doesn't ever have to change for a conflict to be interesting. The protagonist does.
Just like the heroes need to change, the villain also change through their way of fighting to realize their problem, and gets redeemed to show that the hero was RIGHT at least in a degree.

Frieza didn't change, but quite a few other major DBZ villains did and created equally big impact like Piccolo and Vegeta.

I don't think all villains need such change and depth, but some certainly do and would further help the heroes grow.
 
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#54
I disagree with this.Villains do not need character development to be interesting. interesting villain can just be a just obstical.You can still explain their actions without it being moralistic.
Not every villain needs development, yes.

But certainly some need to make their characters better and help others grow, as much as showing the theme of Sailor Moon: Love and Trust. That was Usagi's most important quality.

Nephrite was the example again. He was already a menacing villain, and his redemption brought both he and Naru's character up, making them more memorable and pointed out the theme of the show.
 
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#55
Just like the heroes need to change, the villain also change through their way of fighting to realize their problem, and gets redeemed to show that the hero was RIGHT at least in a degree.

Frieza didn't change, but quite a few other major DBZ villains did and created equally big impact like Piccolo and Vegeta.

I don't think all villains need such change and depth, but some certainly do and would further help the heroes grow.
Sailor Moon has plenty minor villains who changed across the SM manga and anime: Spectre Sisters, Amazon Trio, Heavenly Kings, Amazon Quartet. These changes added something to the story. The forced development of Galaxia, Black Moon Clan being pawns, and Nehelenia not even being convincing as a villain at all in the first place hurt the story.

Edit: The protagonist doesn't need to convince the villain to change to be justified. All they have to do is convince the reader that their beliefs are morally better.
 
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#56
Sailor Moon has plenty minor villains who changed across the SM manga and anime: Spectre Sisters, Amazon Trio, Heavenly Kings, Amazon Quartet. These changes added something to the story. The forced development of Galaxia, Black Moon Clan being pawns, and Nehelenia not even being convincing as a villain at all in the first place hurt the story.
Agree on Galaxia, Nehelenia could have ended as the maniac in the end of SS.

But I think BMC was the best characterized one in both the manga and the anime. Not all of them are redeemed, but they do showed characterization especially in the anime. Esmeraude was not redeemed but we saw her being sympathetic. Demande was one of the best characterized villains.
 
Likes: SILVER
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#57
Agree on Galaxia, Nehelenia could have ended as the maniac in the end of SS.
Could have, but that didn't happen. As a villain, Nehelenia was a poor one because Usagi received little development that arc. The entire story felt like a waste of time when their "conflict" at its core could have been resolved in less than 5 episodes. Instead it was dragged out for more than 40 excruciating episodes.

But I think BMC was the best characterized one in both the manga and the anime. Not all of them are redeemed, but they do showed characterization especially in the anime. Esmeraude was not redeemed but we saw her being sympathetic. Demande was one of the best characterized villains.
Disagree for reasons laid out in my first post. The BMC followed Death Phantom of their own free will in the manga, so their fates were ultimately their own to bear. In the anime they were all brainwashed and controlled like Chibiusa was, so it's hard to say how much of their beliefs and personalities and overall character were really theirs as opposed to DP's influence. The anime isn't as convincing for that reason.
 
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#58
Disagree for reasons laid out in my first post. The BMC followed Death Phantom of their own free will in the manga, so their fates were ultimately their own to bear. In the anime they were all brainwashed and controlled like Chibiusa was, so it's hard to say how much of their beliefs and personalities and overall character were really theirs as opposed to DP's influence. The anime isn't as convincing for that reason.
No, in the anime they were deceived.

They do have dark goals and desire, we also saw character struggle in manga Demande. He actually knew that he was wrong which is why he was so fixed on Serenity because her stare had pointed it out. That is why I think Crystal's ending was spot on. He knew he was wrong, but his pride made him only say it in his last moment.

Anime Demande was much nicer, and he still realized that he was wrong and made the sacrifice. This is the strength of redemption. Even if the character is evil and committed crime, it's still possible for him/her to realize the mistake and turn back and atone for it.
 
Aug 18, 2011
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#59
At least Fairy Tail in most occasion after they reform their villains, they make use of them as allies in future arcs. Why doesn't Sailor Moon do that.
Because Fairy Tail is a series driven by its characters and their individual stories and not the overarching narrative about the primary protagonist. Sailor Moon is not. It's a story about Usagi's journey. The other characters merely exist within the tale with very defined roles to play. That's why the theme of constant redemption can happen in FT without things getting boring because the roles of so many characters are always changing. Mashima knows this too, which is the reason why we see reformed characters and secondary side characters who play a reduced role show up all the time.
 
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#60
No, in the anime they were deceived.

They do have dark goals and desire, we also saw character struggle in manga Demande. He actually knew that he was wrong which is why he was so fixed on Serenity because her stare had pointed it out. That is why I think Crystal's ending was spot on. He knew he was wrong, but his pride made him only say it in his last moment.

Anime Demande was much nicer, and he still realized that he was wrong and made the sacrifice. This is the strength of redemption. Even if the character is evil and committed crime, it's still possible for him/her to realize the mistake and turn back and atone for it.
Look at the impact Demande's death had on both stories. In the manga, Demande's death serves to strengthen the bond between Usagi and Mamoru, which made him very effective as a villain. In the anime, his confession does nothing to erase his previous actions and it doesn't have any lasting effects on Usagi's character. She came out of the R arc the same person she did going into it. The whole redemption angle in this case hurt the story more than it helped.