Sailor Moon is classic story in the world of anime/manga. It is quite interesting fantasy/mahou shoujo manga. In some ways the manga is better than anime.
The most important thing in Sailor Moon is that manga is quite different from the anime story wise especially the final sailor stars arc - IMHO much better than in anime. The most distinct difference is romance dimension. The romance is much more intense in the manga. In manga there are much less bad guys which turn to good side - makes manga story line much simpler. I liked this repentance and conversion element in the anime. There are no filler arcs - Sailor moon R (a pair of aliens Ail and Ann). The Sailor moon R arc is overall quite different from the anime. Internal struggles of main heroine Usagi are also more described in the manga. As it is usual in the manga some key aspects of story are elaborated more than in the anime adaptation. The story focuses also more on character development and it is much more natural and gradual growth of Usagi and her friends from beginning.
Art is similar to typical shoujo manga. Girls with huge eyes and very thin figure. Some pages are really beautiful and detailed. Especially chapter title pages. Some are drawn in much more lazy fashion. Art is hardly the top class, but it is still distinctive from average cheesy shoujo manga. The best description of art feel is cute.
When it comes to characters the manga excels in this aspect. The change of Usagi from character she is at the very beginning through the series is less awkward. Same goes for her friends/partners other sailor senshi. The main male character Chiba Mamoru is bit neglected in comparison.
Japanese difficulty: 3/10 (1 - very easy / 10 - very hard)
As any shoujo manga it contains furigana. Dialogues are relatively easy especially at the beginning. However some parts get more complex, because they contain occasionally technical terminology. If you are not fluent, you will have to take dictionary from time to time to read this manga.
Sailor moon is enjoyable classic romantic fantasy mahou shoujo manga. In this manga external struggles with enemies threating humanity serve as background for growth of character of main heroine and her friends.
Sailor Moon, the godmother of all Maho Shojo manga and puny old me is the first to review it? How the heck does something like this happen?
Anyone who is not familiar with the story of Usagi and the Sailor Soldiers should get off Anime Planet. Now. Your presence is not desired here. Shoo with all your weeabooness.
But anyway let’s get right into the review shall we?
Story: Sailor Moon follows a basic Maho Shojo story line. A young, average girl (and in this case a young extremely lazy girl) is introduced to a talking cat named Luna who tells her she has been selected to be Sailor Moon. There are five others like her that she must find the mysterious moon princess who will then aid them on their mission to save planet earth.
What makes Sailor Moon so down right likeable is the character development and extremely intelligent story line. As said before Usagi is an extremely lazy girl in the beginning of the story and a massive crybaby. But during the course of the story she begins to accept her role as a Sailor Solider and becomes a true leader. One of the great things about this story is the moral of how responsibility can change us, either for the worst or better. Another great thing about this manga is how Naoko Takeuchi always seems to know exactly what she is going to write. There have been no filler chapters at all throughout this manga and each new arch pulls no punches about getting straight to the point. But it is done in a smooth way, nothing feels choppy at all. Overall excellent!
Art: I have never been one for art reviews and I am afraid my review won’t do Naoko justice. Naoko’s art work is simple, but fitting for the feel of the story. Nothing is over the top in terms of cuteness, which is great because it shows that shojo mangas can have intelligence to and not contain images that will give male eyes cancer. Overall in one word, wonderful!
Characters: There were some characters I loved to love and some that I loved to hate. But for this manga that is an acceptable thing. Many mangas who make the mistake of bad characterization miss the fact that certain characters are just down right fun to hate. And when you have characters you feel no emotions towards at all, it sucks all the fun of the story right down the drain. Sailor Moon was made entertaining because of its huge cast of very likeable and sometimes not so much characters. And never do they feel like cardboard cutouts to the plot, they all serve a purpose and begin to grow along with the story just like Usagi.
Overall: Sailor Moon is da bomb, read it because it is good for your soul.
Sailor Moon, just like the anime, is an absolutely iconic manga and classic in the magical girl.genre. The artwork is absolutely beautiful, and the story, while moving too fast for its own good, is easy to follow and fun to read as we watch the girls save the world! This is certainly not a manga to miss if you're a fan of the magical girl genre.