North American or Japanese, musicals must be seen live. When it is not possible to attend either due to location or cost, sometimes the next best thing is to see it at the movies. Whether that’s with a remote broadcast or adaptation, these shows rarely disappoint. When paired with a pop culture phenomenon, especially Sailor Moon, visions of New York Radio City’s The Rockettes style performances come to mind. Just do not tell the Sailor Senshi. They may go on a tirade. This particular series is retelling the manga by Naoko Takeuchi and they been playing in Japan for over two decades. The story arcs are expanded upon and even goes into bold new directions. Not every Japanese pop culture enthusiast may know this subgenre. To keep track of everything from Japan means having both ears to the ground. Officially, only the soundtracks exist and bootleg videos are a grey area. The first overseas performance was in 2015 in Shanghai, and the North American premiere of Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon: The Musical—Le Mouvement Final, presented as a pre-recorded performance, started late last month. Screening made its way to Cineplex Theatres Canada last week.
I am very thankful CineLife Entertainment for overseeing an international distribution; more screenings are being added, and I suspect this video tour is still rolling out.
Fan Expo Vancouver (Nov 11-13, Vancouver Convention Center) is shaping up to be a delight for pop culture fans of all ages. Tom Kenny of Spongebob Squarepants fame will have children coming in troves. For older fans, he is lending his vocal talents in the animated Guardians of the Galaxy as The Collector.
Since coming into the entertainment scene in the late 80’s in How I Got Into College, his career just simply exploded. Followers of his work will remember the many voices he’s offered in the Transformers Animated series and for some, the debate will still continue as who is the best Starscream. Die-hard fans of Generation One cartoon will name Chris Latta but after his passing, other names continued this character’s legacy. From the list of seven (including the live action Bay treatment), Tom Kenny and Steve Blum are by far in the top three whose performances are memorable.
In the anime and animated front, original voice-actor Ryo Horikawa (Vegeta) of Dragon Ball Z will be making an appearance. English voice-actors of this show includes Chris Sabat and Eric Vale. Also appearing are Linda Ballantyne and Susan Roman of Sailor Moon, Cherami Leigh of Sword Art Online, Jamie Marchi of Fairy Tail and Trina Nishmura of Attack on Titan.
For a full line-up of guests coming to this year’s show — especially several returning to the Pacific Northwest if you missed seeing them at Emerald City Comicon in prior years — please check out the guest list here.
Tamashii Nations will be expanding their S.H.Figuarts Sailor Moon license in 2017 by releasing figures from the animated reboot Sailor Moon Crystal.
Sailor Moon has been the first of the Crystal figures announced and should make it to consumers’ hands by January of next year. Tamashii has been faithfully recreated by Sailor Moon in every detail right down to her Cosmic Heart compact. Fully poseable, Sailor Moon comes with interchangeable hands, facial expressions, and accessories.
If you haven’t heard of freelance artist Renarêve, you should. She has a beautiful style to her creations that would be considered worthy of Disney yet there is a painted look to her works that makes them aesthetically pleasing. Renarêve is not only able to create characters that appear Disneyesque, she is able to go from soft images to hard as proven by her limited run of Wonder Woman action prints presented previously at NexCon.
Inspired by Japan’s history of samurais and feuding shoguns, Renarêve has taken Naoko Takeuchi’s Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon (美少女戦士セーラームーン) characters and reimagined them as hierarchical characters from that timeline. Although not historically accurate Renarêve addressed this issue via her Facebook page: