Is Toei regretting Crystal's initial concept?

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kasumigenx

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We had a perfectly fine sequel with Cardcaptor Sakura Clear Card that had solid animation and production value issues that plagued Crystal but fans still complained about how Clear Card turned out. It will be the same thing with a Sailor Moon sequel as well. It's not just towards Crystal but I sense a lot of cynicism towards the franchise as a whole. Most fandom discussions these days seem to be complaining which version of the series is the worst, dub wars, political rants about the series, rants about Naoko, rants about Ikuhara, nitpicking apart plot holes and inconsistencies and the fandom just feels tired these days. I just want to finish collecting the show and for Crystal to finally finish and then I can move on to something else.
CLAMP entrusts the animation to trustworthy studios, the exception is Beetrain for Tsubasa and the Cancelled Tokyo Babylon anime by GoHands.
 

Lady Pen

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I've heard that the project was delayed at first in 2013? I'm curious about what the original plans were.

I don't think Toei (and Kodansha) is regretting anything. Crystal/Eternal's existence consisted in making headlines, selling 90's merch, selling the Kanzenban/Bunkoban/Digital Edition, 90's Blu Rays, and so on. Crystal/Eternal has no heart, it's just an advert for the 20th/25th/30th anniversary of the franchise and they've made a lot of money.
 
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Crystal/Eternal has no heart, it's just an advert for the 20th/25th/30th anniversary of the franchise and they've made a lot of money.
I think we can all agree that this definitely applies to the DK arc and most of the BM arc of Crystal which were objective messes all around. But considering the significant improvements made to both season 3 and the Eternal movies what makes you think they still have no heart? In fact, pretty much the only thing I can point to in season 3 and Eternal of being indicative of a soulless cashgrab is the lazy rehashing of 90’s anime motifs such as transformations and even songs (Watashitachi Naritakute anyone?). Is it just the fact that it’s a direct adaptation of the manga with little to no changes that makes you feel like it has no heart? Would you have preferred a completely original and new take on Sailor Moon like the 90’s anime, Musicals and PGSM did?
 
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Jul 6, 2018
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I think we can all agree that this definitely applies to the DK arc and most of the BM arc of Crystal which were objective messes all around. But considering the significant improvements made to both season 3 and the Eternal movies what makes you think they still have no heart? In fact, pretty much the only thing I can point to in season 3 and Eternal of being indicative of a soulless cashgrab is the lazy rehashing of 90’s anime motifs such as transformations and even songs (Watashitachi Naritakute anyone?) Is it just the fact that it’s a direct adaptation of the manga with little to no changes that makes you feel like it has no heart? Would you have preferred a completely original and new take on Sailor Moon like the 90’s anime, Musicals and PGSM did?
Nowadays it is in vogue to hate on the manga... Sadly.
 

kasumigenx

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I think we can all agree that this definitely applies to the DK arc and most of the BM arc of Crystal which were objective messes all around. But considering the significant improvements made to both season 3 and the Eternal movies what makes you think they still have no heart? In fact, pretty much the only thing I can point to in season 3 and Eternal of being indicative of a soulless cashgrab is the lazy rehashing of 90’s anime motifs such as transformations and even songs (Watashitachi Naritakute anyone?). Is it just the fact that it’s a direct adaptation of the manga with little to no changes that makes you feel like it has no heart? Would you have preferred a completely original and new take on Sailor Moon like the 90’s anime, Musicals and PGSM did?
They could have fleshed the manga more...and filled the plot holes.
 
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I think we can all agree that this definitely applies to the DK arc and most of the BM arc of Crystal which were objective messes all around. But considering the significant improvements made to both season 3 and the Eternal movies what makes you think they still have no heart? In fact, pretty much the only thing I can point to in season 3 and Eternal of being indicative of a soulless cashgrab is the lazy rehashing of 90’s anime motifs such as transformations and even songs (Watashitachi Naritakute anyone?). Is it just the fact that it’s a direct adaptation of the manga with little to no changes that makes you feel like it has no heart? Would you have preferred a completely original and new take on Sailor Moon like the 90’s anime, Musicals and PGSM did?
yeah, for me is the other way arounds, they (badly) planned the first two arcs as one season, got a lot of promo, new things tha were not on the manga and tried to do something original. for the next season and movie they feel kinda forced to continue the anime but they tried the precure route and then toei was like "f*ck it" and went for the whole 90's easy route and Crystal kinda lost its own persona and became something else.

Chiaki Kon did fixed a lot of things but some things are missing and for me it doesn't feel right compared to the previous first two seasons, I mean, everything looks nice but idk, there is something missing for me
 
Jul 6, 2018
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yeah, for me is the other way arounds, they (badly) planned the first two arcs as one season, got a lot of promo, new things tha were not on the manga and tried to do something original. for the next season and movie they feel kinda forced to continue the anime but they tried the precure route and then toei was like "f*ck it" and went for the whole 90's easy route and Crystal kinda lost its own persona and became something else.

Chiaki Kon did fixed a lot of things but some things are missing and for me it doesn't feel right compared to the previous first two seasons, I mean, everything looks nice but idk, there is something missing for me
Khon should have started from the beginning directing the project. I t would have been way different. She started in a position in which she had to play it safe and as much as I dislike the way the art got ruined in season 3, she saved the show when it comes to direction. If she started directing it from the beginning we might have gotten original 2d animations, better composed episodes episodes. something original and consistent manga-inspired art-style. All it is missing at this point is characters with noses and less generic moe look. Tadano made them less generic compared to season 3, now we need the noses for Stars.
 

Lady Pen

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Is it just the fact that it’s a direct adaptation of the manga with little to no changes that makes you feel like it has no heart?
The difference between Crystal/Eternal and the manga is that the latter has passion, energy and heart, regardless its quality. Crystal lacks all those attributes due to the ignorance of today's executives in Toei and Kodansha who don't know at all why Sailor Moon was a success and why it's still so beloved in the world. They've taken the franchise for granted because of the title and its fame.

Would you have preferred a completely original and new take on Sailor Moon like the 90’s anime, Musicals and PGSM did?
You once said that the manga and the 90's show had a symbiotic relationship, and I agree, you need to know both to understand its world as a whole. That's why all the versions that came after 1997 used both manga and 90's as the main source, being all of them charming at the very least. I mean, Rei is a complete different character in the 90's but thanks to the manga, Casablanca story, one can get the reason why she lives with her grandpa.

Crystal isn't an adaptation, it's just a carbon copy (a bad copy) with some little variations of the comic and 90's stock footage for attacks and transformations. Sailor Moon needs a new team who cares for it, not Toei's men in suits relying upon Osano and his 'the comic is wonderful, flawless and eternal.' Sometimes I think Naoko is his sister or a cousin he uses in public appearances and the original author is him.
 
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The difference between Crystal/Eternal and the manga is that the latter has passion, energy and heart, regardless its quality. Crystal lacks all those attributes due to the ignorance of today's executives in Toei and Kodansha who don't know at all why Sailor Moon was a success and why it's still so beloved in the world. They've taken the franchise for granted because of the title and its fame.

Crystal isn't an adaptation, it's just a carbon copy (a bad copy) with some little variations of the comic and 90's stock footage for attacks and transformations. Sailor Moon needs a new team who cares for it, not Toei's men in suits relying upon Osano and his 'the comic is wonderful, flawless and eternal.'
This I definitely agree with, without actual talent like Ikuhara and Sato on board, Toei has mismanaged this IP every step of the way, even before they completely mangled Crystal (see SuperS). I have always been the first one to say that what Sailor Moon really needs is a new studio, one that actually cares and isn’t just in it to sell toys/merch. There’s a reason why Miyazaki left Toei and took a bunch of staff with him to form Ghibli - Toei truly does live up to its “Disney of Japan” moniker they penned themselves, but more like the new Disney which is a soulless, capatalist imperialist which buys up practically every other studio and franchise in existence all while it shits out lazy, worse, live-action remakes of their classics because they feel they no longer need to put in any effort and can ride off the coattails of their brand name. A studio like Kyoani or Bones would’ve treated Sailor Moon with much more care.

But is your problem with Crystal just that it’s a bad copy of the manga or that it’s a copy at all? Would you have been satisfied if it was an exact copy of the manga only done with the care another studio could’ve given it or did you not want a direct 1:1 manga adaptation to begin with? Keep in mind that if it’s the latter, plenty of manga fans hold the manga in high regard and have been begging for a straight anime adaptation for ages now, just like franchises such as Fullmetal Alchemist and Fruits Basket got - why should those fans be deprived of a faithful adaptation when pretty much every unfaithful manga adaptation is getting the “Brotherhood” treatment? Don’t those manga fans deserve their own “Brotherhood” version of the manga? A well done, beautifully animated, actually faithful panel by panel adaptation with no weird editions and no cuts whatsoever. Why can’t the manga fans have that adaptation they’ve long been waiting for, while the IP also continues to create original, alternate interpretations of the franchise side-by side? I feel like it shouldn’t be an either-or situation and the fandom can and should have both. One animated panel by panel adaptation of the manga wouldn’t kill the fandom, so long as that’s the only one made and future versions continue going with their own original visions or combining elements of both the manga & 90’s anime, expanding on the manga, etc.


I mean, Rei is a complete different character in the 90's but thanks to the manga, Casablanca story, one can get the reason why she lives with her grandpa.
But see we actually don’t know the reason why Rei lives with her grandpa in the 90’s anime, seeing as the 90’s anime never delved into her backstory and we cannot just automatically apply manga canon to the 90’s since they’re two separate universes - heck, never mind Rei, even Grandpa Hino himself is a completely different person. Both the manga and 90’s anime were written by completely different people, the manga by Naoko and Osabu, and the anime by Sato, Ikuhara, Igarashi and an assortment of other Toei writers. Naturally these different writing teams each brings with them their own perspective and interpretation of what Sailor Moon “should be.” Not unlike the old Optimum dub’s interpretation or even Saban Moon’s, heck even PGSM and the Musicals have their own wholly original elements because the nature of Sailor Moon as a franchise has always been a different team of writers handling each of their versions and shaping Sailor Moon into what they think the IP should be.

The only thing that’s remained consistent between all the versions is the concept of the 5 Inners and the Cats, Past Lives/Silver Millenium, the Miracle Romance, and the villain & civilian designs and concepts - everything else, each different writing team shaped to their liking in order to tell their own version of Sailor Moon. Sailor Moon as an IP is less of one consistent story and more just an amalgamation of ideas using key outlined concepts that each writer uses in their own way. (Heck this can be seen even with the billed as a straight manga adaption Crystal during it’s DK and BM arcs, for better or for worse) It is truly an entire franchise in every sense of the word.


Sometimes I think Naoko is his sister or a cousin he uses in public appearances and the original author is him.
I mean considering Osabu technically created the concept of Sailor Moon himself, you’re not that far off, lol.
 
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kasumigenx

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This I definitely agree with, without actual talent like Ikuhara and Sato on board, Toei has mismanaged this IP every step of the way, even before they completely mangled Crystal (see SuperS). I have always been the first one to say that what Sailor Moon really needs is a new studio, one that actually cares and isn’t just in it to sell toys/merch. There’s a reason why Miyazaki left Toei and took a bunch of staff with him to form Ghibli - Toei truly does live up to its “Disney of Japan” moniker they penned themselves, but more like the new Disney which is a soulless, capatalist imperialist which buys up practically every other studio and franchise in existence all while it shits out lazy, worse, live-action remakes of their classics because they feel they no longer need to put in any effort and can ride off the coattails of their brand name. A studio like Kyoani or Bones would’ve treated Sailor Moon with much more care.
MAPPA, Bones or Kyoani.
 

foenyanko

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Mappa are in a really bad shape recently and they lost a bit of our faith - used to be my choice as well. Bones are too focused on shounen and KyoAni style and writing always gravitated towards slice of live and they would have most likely go over moe with it, It is too moe already.
KyoAni definitely gravitates towards a moe style, but damn, if an average episode of Crystal had looked half as good as what they've produced, I would have been fine with it looking moe. Their work is always stellar and their latest Dragon Maid season was spectacular. The action scenes alone would have made it worth it for me.
 
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I’m just gonna be honest, the manga has some good ideas, the lore and world has some much potential to be built and expanded on in a meaningful way but no one involved in Crystal has the vision or creative direction to pull such a feat off.
 

Rika-Chicchi

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I’m just gonna be honest, the manga has some good ideas, the lore and world has some much potential to be built and expanded on in a meaningful way but no one involved in Crystal has the vision or creative direction to pull such a feat off.
Perhaps they're precisely instructed not to do that. lol
 
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KyoAni definitely gravitates towards a moe style, but damn, if an average episode of Crystal had looked half as good as what they've produced, I would have been fine with it looking moe. Their work is always stellar and their latest Dragon Maid season was spectacular. The action scenes alone would have made it worth it for me.
As good as they move, I am sick and tired of round bubble heads...
 
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NJ_

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MAPPA, Bones or Kyoani.
MAPPA is a garbage studio nowadays plus they were still new when this was originally announced in 2012 being run by guys who had just left Madhouse the year before (and almost killing them off but that's a different story). Too bad they basically turned into what Madhouse was 15 years ago with taking on too many shows at once and in some cases, taking credit for others' work while doing little to nothing for it (see the last Ikuhara show).
 

kasumigenx

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MAPPA is a garbage studio nowadays plus they were still new when this was originally announced in 2012 being run by guys who had just left Madhouse the year before (and almost killing them off but that's a different story). Too bad they basically turned into what Madhouse was 15 years ago with taking on too many shows at once and in some cases, taking credit for others' work while doing little to nothing for it (see the last Ikuhara show).
Perhaps we can have Trigger who made Kill la Kill animate Sailor Moon.