As fans continue to wait for the now twice-delayed debut of the new Sailor Moon TV series, numerous companies have been taking advantage of their anxious anticipation by featuring the beloved magical girls of the hit ‘90s anime in their offerings and advertisements. We recently saw Japanese intimate apparel manufacturer Peach John release a line of Sailor Moon-themed bras and panties which sold out almost immediately, but the power of Moon marketing is too great to be contained in its native Japan.
A troupe of Korean idols recently appeared as the Sailor Moon cast in a music video and accompanying TV commercial, causing a schism on the Internet in the process.
Cosplaying as the Sailor Scouts are the four young ladies of K-pop unit SISTAR (remember kids, if you’re going to spell your stage name incorrectly, you may as well go whole hog and spell it in all caps). SISTAR recently landed a gig endorsing a Korean shopping center, and in the advertisement sing a Korean version of the original Sailor Moon opening theme, “Moonlight Legend.”
The group appears in costumes similar to those of heroine Sailor Moon and her friends…well, three of Sailor Moon’s friends, at least. Technological genius Sailor Mercury, the brains of the bunch, is nowhere to be seen.
Sailor Mercury’s absence isn’t the only thing hardcore anime fans found to grumble about though. Among the laundry list of complaints: all of the girls carry the Crystal Rod (which only Sailor Moon herself wields in the anime), the singer cosplaying as Sailor Moon doesn’t have a tiara, the separate shirt and skirts in the video don’t match the one-piece uniforms of the animated version, and SISTAR’s boots and gloves differ from those worn by their anime counterparts.
On the other side of the divide, a number of viewers have expressed their complete satisfaction with SISTAR’s less than 100 percent faithful adaptation. These supporters, many of whom are young males, cite certain added….aspects they rather enjoy about the group’s take on Sailor Moon.
But no matter where you stand regarding the creative liberties taken by SISTAR, there’s no denying the ad’s effectiveness in attracting attention. Here’s hoping the two sides of the debate can put aside their differences and realize that it’s possible to love both iconic anime character design and sexy Korean pop idol dancing.