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Sailor Moon

1.12 An Unnatural Phenomena

Comparison:

  • US TV Version
  • German TV Version
Release: Jul 06, 2011 - Author: -Der-Tribun - Translator: Tony Montana - external link: IMDB - more from this series
Compared are 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.

    Only the comparison of the first episode mentions the differences of the opening and final credits, the title of the episodes, the preview of the next episode and the "Sailor Says". All these elements are being ignored in the calculation of the different lengths. Basically, cuts and modifications are the two issues that might have happened. Sometimes it's only of them, sometimes both at the same time. The time index is based on the German Version.

    Fun fact

    It might seem pretty odd for us but changing the class room while the students stay in one class room all the time is common for the teachers in Japan. This explains why the scene with Haruna's empty desk is so interesting because the teacher usually arrives before the class starts.

  • Episode 12: An Unnatural Phenomena



    Bunny, Ami and Rei are visiting one of the most amazing parks in Tokyo. Unfortuantely, the park guard Kunitachi lets them know the park was going to be torn down to build a new office complex. Meanwhile, Nephrite has found a new prey: Mr. Kunitachi. He gets bewitched until his maximal energy level has been reached. At the same time, Rei is coming up to Mamoru with the intention of becoming a close friend. They have a good day at the park until a slightly cuckoo Kunitachi arrives. Suddenly everything in the park acts up and a Youma rises out of him. Bunny, who spied on Rei, and Ami attack but their first attack fails. Beind supported by Tuxedo Mask, all of them attack at the same time and can finally destroy the Youma. Rei is disappointed about her unsuccessful date. To Kunitachi's joy, the park could get saved because of the riots. Nephrite has been left standing once again.

    Running time German episode: 18:25
    Running time US episode: 17:46


    That means: minus the non-existent scenes in the Original Version, the US Version lacks 39 seconds.

    [01:20]-[01:23]
    Modified scene
    The shot of the apartment tower in the Juuban shopping area has been replaced by a shot of the Tokyo Tower at night from episode 3. The reason is the same as before: the Kanji on the wall.
    German VersionUS Version


    [01:34]-[01:36]
    [-2 sec]

    Shortened scene
    Missing shot of the truck who threatens Luna's life.


    [01:40]-[01:44]
    [-4 sec]

    Shortened scene
    Mamoru's jump over the guarding rail is distinctly shorter.


    [02:00]-[02:12] und [02:14]-[02:16]
    [-14 sec]

    Shortened scene
    The fight scene with Bunny and Mamoru has been shortened pretty rough.
    Bunny yanks Luna out of Mamoru's arms, holds him up and claims only she knew what was best for Luna. Due to Luna's uncomfy position, Rei and Ami seem to be slightly appalled. When Motoki shows up, a further shot of them with Luna is missing.


    [02:20]-[02:26]
    [-6 sec]

    Shortened scene
    Bunny reacts to Motoki's revelation of Mamoru's name, claims he was a student and points the finger at him while Motoki asks her to do that one more time.


    [03:21]-[03:25] und [04:06]-[04:10]
    Modified scene
    The entire sequence of Bunny, when she plays and the Sailor V video game and loses (which is both times the same btw), has been modified for the US Version and nothing in common with the sequence in the Original Version, except the Sailor V-Sprite.
    German VersionUS Version


    [03:26]-[04:05]
    Modified scene
    The conversation between Rei and Motoki is COMPLETELY new.

    In the Original and German Version, Motoki tells Rei anything he knows about Mamoru. Details are being brought into the light of day, e.g. that he loves alone. Rei wants to know if he really went to a very famous university and Motoki says he was positive and asks why he wanted to know all that. Rei gets embarrassed and replies quickly she was just curious. She thinks for herself Mamoru was the right one for her and plans a date with him at the park.

    In the US Version, rei and Motoki are talking about how Bunny met rei at the temple. Motoki claims Bunny said Mamoru was a martial artist as well and he ran a dojo at the uni. Rei thinks for herself they had sth. in common and makes plans how to get him.

    [05:30]
    [-1 sec]

    Shortened scene
    Missing black screen during the transition from Kunitachi to Nephrite.


    ab [07:26]
    Modified scene
    Mamoru's reaction to Rei making a pass at him is different. While he just plays along to not hurt her feelings without being interested in her in the German Version, he is interested in her in the US Version - which the exact opposite reaction in comparison to the Original Version.

    [10:00]-[10:15]
    Modified scene
    The meaning of the conversation between the property owner and Mr. Kunitachi has been changed to the opposite.
    In the German Version, the owner announces the contruction work are going to get stopped due to the incidents and the park survives.
    In the US Version, he says to Kunitachi the was lost anyway and recommends to look for a job as groundskeeper.


    [10:16]-[1030:]
    Modified scene
    Ami's monolog is absolutely different in the US Version.

    In the German Version, Ami tells Luna how Kunitachi had changed in a negative way. A flashback of him yelling at her is being shown. Ami doesn't know what's going on.
    In the US Version, Ami fabulates she'd known Kunitachi for years. The flaqshback doesn't fit with the monolog that he'd taught her lots of things at all. Ami wondershow she could help and didn't notice any different behavior.

    [10:31]-[10:35]
    [-4 sec]

    Shortened scene
    The owner of the parking spot has a smoke and grumbles.


    [12:41]-[12:45]
    [-4 sec]

    Shortened scene
    While the Youma appears, Mr. Kunitachi goes down with an idle glance.


    [15:41]-[15:43]
    [-2 sec]

    Shortened scene
    Sailor Mars' approaching is missing because her panties are visible very well.


    [16:23]-[16:25]
    [-2 sec]

    Shortened scene
    The camera tracks up to Tuxedo Mask several times.