Article first published as Manga Review: Sailor Moon – Volume 11 by Naoko Takeuchi on Blogcritics.
Sailor Moon Volume 11 is a manga with the story and art by Naoko Takeuchi. Kodansha Comics has the North American distribution rights for the manga, and their English adaptation of this volume was released in 2013. Sailor Moon is rated “T” for teens 13 and up; from what I’ve read of the series, I would agree with this rating.
A new story arc begins in Volume 11, and Mamoru is heading off to America to study at Harvard. When Usagi goes to see Mamoru off, he gives her a ring. After she’s given the ring, something strange happens to Mamoru and Usagi passes out. She’s rescued by three people who have not appeared previously in the series. Around this same time, Chibi-usa returns to the 30th century
Shortly after, a boy band called Three Lights hits it big, and the three members transfer into Usagi’s high school. As the volume progresses, it’s revealed there’s more to Three Lights than meets the eye. Chibi-Chibi-Chan also enters the storyline; she looks an awful lot like she should be related to Usagi somehow, but the child doesn’t give any information about who she is or where she comes from.
The new villain introduced in this arc is Sailor Galaxia. She is wanting to acquire all of the Sailor Crystals, and it appears she is ultimately after Sailor Moon for her Silver Moon Crystal.
With this volume, Takeuchi has drastically expanded the concept of the Sailor Guardians and now there are a lot more of them that come from all over the Milky Way. To be honest, by the time I finished the volume, I found myself feeling rather overwhelmed and a bit confused by just how quickly Takeuchi expanded the Sailor Moon universe.
One of the biggest questions in this volume is who exactly Chibi-Chibi-Chan is; however, by the end of the volume, the reader is still no closer to understanding who she is at the end of the volume than they were when she was first introduced into the story. There’s only one more volume of the Sailor Moon series left, so I suspect more information about Chibi-Chibi-Chan will be revealed during the final volume.
While I have thought that the plots in some of the earlier volumes were strange, I think this story arc wins the prize for being the strangest of them all. Volume 11 spends a lot of time building up the storyline, introducing a whole bunch of new characters, and expanding on the already established universe; combining all of these elements makes this particular volume a bit of dense read. With only one volume left, I’m afraid Takeuchi ended up rushing through this storyline in order to conclude it.
There’s a preview of Volume 12 at the back of the book that’s in English. It’s definitely from the first five pages of the next volume, and it picks up exactly where Volume 11 ends.
After reading Volume 11, it seems like it would probably appeal more to the die-hard Sailor Moon fans than to more casual readers like myself. It’s not that it’s a bad read, but I think a more casual reader is more likely to be left confused by this storyline than anything else, and may not feel as invested to go on to Volume 12 in order to find out what happens.
I wrote this review after reading a copy of Sailor Moon Volume 11 that I checked out through the King County Library System.