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Sailor Moon

2.04 VR Madness

original title: Bishôjo senshi Sęrâ Műn

Comparison:

  • US TV Version
  • German TV Version
Release: Aug 21, 2011 - Author: -Der-Tribun - Translator: Sebbe - external link: IMDB - more from this series
Comparison between the heavily censored US TV Version and the German TV Version.











German Version:US Version:


The anime series Sailor Moon should ring a bell. The 200 episodes-series about a group of girls, who can perform magic tricks, fighting Evil is a classic which left a mark in the awareness of Japanese Productions (in both directions). No doubt about that. The series was a major success worldwide. But the German Version is quitr a surprise. In comparison to Saber Rider for instance, the German Version are based on the original Japanese master and the effort to keep it as close as possible to the Original was being made. Besides a few modification (please see below), the German Version is equal to the uncensored original Japanese Version.

Unlike the US North American Version.

The company DiC was calling the shots for the adaption of the first two seasons and Cloverway for the following two seasons. The final season 5 has never been released in the US, probably because of the controversial "Sailor Starlights", which also change the gender during their transformations. The realization is legen.... wait for it.... [sorry, wrong franchise -:)] The realization is legendary but it's also a perfect example for heavy censorship in animes these days. Especially season 1, produced by DiC, has a very dreadful rep and is the one with the most censorships being made. "Highlights" are the last two episodes of the first season. The remains of these episodes were put together to one single episode. Really preposterous.

The Modifications / Censorship



The
  • removal of scenes is the most common censorship. The length of the removed scenes is purely and simply impressive. Looks like the episodes were censored randomly. Besides the violence cuts, which could be expected, plot scenes, some gags and anything that could cause trouble with the FCC, was precautionally removed.
  • The meaning of scenes was changed very often, too. In most cases, the lines in the dub are softer but modifications of the footage were also being made. As a result of that, a scene might have an entirely different meaning than the exact same scene in the Original.
  • Americanization describes the pathetic attempt to make the series less Japanese. Not only the character names are different (please see below for details) but the Japanese ideographs (Kanji, Katakana, Hiragana) are wiped out as well. Further differences are renamed foot (but it still looks the same which is quite hilarious). But the best thing is: anything takes place in the US, Tokyo isn't being mentioned for once. These modifications aren't going to be mentioned anymore because it happens too often. Exeptions are extraordinary examples for that.
    Examples:
    German Version:US Version:


  • Images were censored, especially when it became to revealing. This also and particularly concerns the transitions (except Sailor Moon's) where curves were removed like there were no tomorrow.
    Examples:
    German Version:US Version:


  • CGI was added to a lot of scenes which doesn't contain any CGI in the Original Version. Listing all the CGI of any episode would break the mold but I can assure you: if there's a conspicuous CG shot, it wasn't in the Original Version.
    Examples:
    German Version:US Version:


  • Transitions were added digitally as well. Recognizing them is a piece of cake because they're obviously a break of style and they're supposed to cover up the cuts. And here also counts: listing any transition would break the mold, so I'm not going to do that.
    Examples:


    Unfortunately there are some
  • removed episodes, too. From 46 Original episodes of season 1, only 40 were left over. The removed episodes Nr. 2, 5, 6, 20, 42 and the episodes 44 and 45 were so heavily cut that it was one single episode in the end.
    In the second season, episode 67 was being removed. (Note: The German Vesion lacks episode 89 but it only consists of stock footage and is hated by the fanbase, so it's not a big loss at all.)
  • Gender change is a popular method to hide homosexuality. In this case, two characters are being affected: Zoicite (in Germany Zoisite) in season 1 is actually a man. But to avoid his homosexual relationship with Kunzite, he's a woman now. The second character is Fish Eye in season 4. Though he acts very feminine, he's actually a male (and he's also gay). A further victim of a gender change is Zirconia in season 4 for instance. And if such a censorship wasn't possible, the status of their relationship was being changed. The lovers Uranus and Neptun e.g. are cousins now.
    The
  • modification of the audio track is no censorship in the proper sense but a lot of atmosphere gets lost. The reason for that is pretty simple: the US Version takes a pass on the original music and noises - a new audio track was being made. It works for the noises but it doesn't for the music. The original music is way better.
  • "Sailor Says" is a segment which exists exclusively in the US Version. If you know Filmation's "Masters Of The Universe" (good old times), the last scene should be look very familiar because it also with a scene where the kids were supposed to learn a lesson. This could be realized with stock footage.
  • Different names for the attacks and transformations were used, despite the fact that the names in the Original Version are English as well. But I must say that someof the German names were just made up, too. Here some examples of attacks, an entire list would be too long.

    Original Version:US Version:German Version:
    Moon Tiara ActionMoon Tiara MagicMondstein, flieg und sieg
    Shabon SprayMercury Bubbles BlastSeifenblasen, fliegt
    Fire SoulMars Fire IgniteFeuerball, flieg
    Supreme ThunderSupreme Thunder CrashDonnerschlag, flieg
    Cresent BeamVenus Cresent Beam SmashHalbmondstrahl, flieg

  • Change of names affects all characters. Here's a list of characters with more than one appearance in season 1. Find the original name in brackets if the German name is different.

    German Version:US Version:
    Bunny(Usagi) TsukinoSerena Tsukino
    Mamoru Chiba/Tuxedo MaskDarien Shields/Tuxedo Mask
    Ami MizunoAmy Anderson
    Rei HinoReye Hino
    Makoto KinoLita Kino
    Minako AinoMina Aino
    LunaLuna
    ArtemisArtemis
    Königin Perillia(Beryl)Queen Beryl
    Königin MetalliaNegaforce
    Jedite (Jadeite)Jadeite
    Neflite(Nephrite)Neflyte
    Zoisite(Zoicite)Zoycite
    KunziteMalachite
    Naru OsakaMolly Baker
    Motoki FuruhataAndrew
    Umino GurioMelvin
    Shingo TsukinoSammy Tsukino
    Ikkuko TsukinoMom
    Kenji TsukinoDad
    Mika KayamaMika Cassidy
    Haruna SakuradaPatricia Haruna
    ReikaRita
    Yuuichirou KumadaChad

    It's also worth being mentioned that the German was being modified here and there, too. Zoisite e.g. is a woman as well (I guess the channel changed that) and attempts to avoid words like "kill", "die" etc. were being made, which causes an odd result in some scenes. But still: these modifications are pretty harmless in comparison to the DiC Version. Comparisons of the dialogs with subtitled Japanese episodes proof how close to the Original the German dialogs are.

    Just as in the first season, the second season also offers a different opening, different credits, different episode titles, as well as the "Sailor Says". These things will only be mentioned in the report of the first episode of the second season. Any of these differences will be ignored for the overall difference in time for each episode, which means that only the "real" content of the episode matters for these statistics. Therefore, the reports will basically concentrate on cuts as well as alterations (some of the scenes actually offer both things at the same time). The time designations always refer to the German version.
  • Episode 44: VR Madness



    It's Sunday and Bunny doesn't know how to spend her time until she sees a newly set up Laserdome where you can shoot projected monsters. She meets Mamoru there and also, which doesn't please her much, Ail and Anne, who plan to steal energy. Bunny's mood changes from complicated -she meets her father and brother in the Laserdome- to stressed -Anne throws herself at Mamoru once again- to relaxed when she and Mamoru finally go shooting by themselves. But then Ail and Anne attack with the help of a Cardian, which robs the energy from the visitors. Sailor Moon notices terrified that her tiara doesn't work as a weapon anymore because of her low self-confidence. Moreover, Mamoru isn't the Moonlight Knight, they both can be seen at the same time. The other Warriors come to their rescue, before the Cardian can annihilate them, so Ail and Anne must draw back. Now Bunny asks herself how she can be of use without her power.

    Running Time of the German version: 19:00
    Running Time of the American version: 18:04


    Missing in the American version: 60 seconds(Minus the scenes which are not included in the original)

    This episode is astonishing because of the many very short cuts which result in a big total amount.

    [00:06]-[00:09]
    [-3 sec.]

    Cut
    Ikuko (Bunny's mother) pulls off the blanket. Luna can jump aside just in time before Bunny falls headfirst on her pillow.


    [00:22]-[00:26]
    Addition + Cut
    Two things were altered when Bunny protests tiredly.

    [00:22] [+2 sec.] Bunny's tired appearance was slightly altered.


    [00:23]-[00:26] [-3 sec.] Also there's missing the end of that scene, where Bunny presses Luna's pillow at her face and falls asleep immediately, which Luna comments with a deep sigh.


    [01:04]-[01:07]
    [-3 sec.]

    Cut
    The shot on the flyer for the Laserdome is longer. The reason for this cut is the concentration on the kanji and katakana.


    [01:19]-[01:23]
    [-4 sec.]

    Cut
    The view is going back on the flyer before there's a fluent cross-fade from the advertisement to the front of the Laserdome. The cross-fade was left out because of the cut of the flyer.


    [01:34]-[01:40]
    Alteration
    What Bunny says to Luna was completely changed.

    In the original and in the German version, Bunny swears that she will win every game in the Laserdome. In the American version this was changed to the political correct statement that they hopefully don't have war games there...How the translators came up with this idea will remain a mystery.

    [02:14]-[02:18]
    [-4 sec.]

    Cut
    Bunny keeps on questioning Luna. She grips Luna pretty uncomfortable, so she starts to yowl.


    [03:10]-[03:17]
    [-7 sec.]

    Cut
    The guy, who was smacked by Anne keeps on complaining about her being too sensitive. Anne isn't pleased by this and she asks herself angrily if others must bare such idiocy, too.


    [05:10]-[05:16]
    [-6 sec.]

    Cut
    Bunny puts Shingo in a headlock to make him speak. Shingo says that she would be too stupid to operate such a hi-tech machine. Bunny gives him a clout for this insult.


    [05:28]-[05:37]
    [-11 sec.]

    Cut
    Bunny's father Kenji whispers to her that she shall behave herself because he trusts her. Bunny says confidently that she would know how to behave.


    [06:02]-[06:06]
    [-4 sec.]

    Cut
    There's missing a trucking shot through the insides of the Laserdome.


    [06:56]-[07:01]
    [-5 sec.]

    Cut
    After Ail challenged Mamoru to a duel, there's missing the extremely exaggerated description of their rivalry.


    [08:38]-[08:40]
    [-2 sec.]

    Cut
    The original scene transition got lost because of the digital scene transition.


    [09:15]
    [+2 sec.]

    Addition
    A before shown view on the Laserdome scenery is repeated again in the American version.


    [09:30]-[09:34]
    [-4 sec.]

    Cut
    One victim tries to defend itself against the Cardian with a useless tagging gun.


    [10:14]-[10:18]
    [-4 sec.]

    Cut
    Mamoru and Bunny are still active in the Laserdome.


    [13:03]-[13:05]
    Alteration
    A strange effect was added to the scene in the American version: a quickly fading crescent moon, which has nothing to do with this scene. In result the picture gets very muddy.
    German versionAmerican version


    [18:31]-[19:00]
    Alteration
    Bunny's monologue was altered.

    In the German version, Bunny is quite hysterical about her tiara not working anymore and that she can't attack monsters with it. Finally she adds that Mamoru isn't the Moonlight Knight and she thinks about what to do now.

    In the American version, she doesn't say anything about her now useless weapon. She just laments about the nature of the Moonlight Knight and complains that she doesn't know in what she should believe now.
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