By Sailor Ryo-Ohki aka Angel Serena aka Sailor Mercury90 aka Floranaturefairy aka Aisiko Awayuki aka...
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PLOT: Come inside and celebrate the first ever Kwanzaa in Tokyo! With her friends, Sakura Matsumoto is preparing for a special holiday
LENGTH: 2,347 words
COMMENTS: Aah, the holidays! The presents, the food, the snow, the ever-present spirit of giving, and fellowship. And, of course, the actual holidays themselves: Christmas, Hannukah and Kwanzaa. At least in America. In Japan Christmas is a romantic winter holiday, the clear holiday champion. Hannukah is barely even known let alone celebrated, and Kwanzaa...is as common as a sighting of Bigfoot. Which makes perfect sense that it's Kwanzaa that is the focus of this rare treat. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this is a Sailor Moon holiday badfic by none other than the author known as Sailor Ryo-Ohki!
And what a badfic it is. We meet again with A Sailor Romance's main character, Denise Matsumoto, inexplicably renamed A'Marie for about half the story, only to revert to Denise's nickname, Sakura, in the middle - much like Tokyo seems to confusingly turn into America with the introduction of two rather emphatic and stereotypical racists who refer to black slavery (despite the fact black slavery didn't exist in Japan...). This isn't the only faux pas, of course. No, there is something far worse in this story. Worse than it being dub-based as per usual, worse than the horrid lack of knowledge regarding Kwanzaa and its history and its relative importance in African-American culture aside from random Swahili thrown around and the fact people eat food and get presents. Yes, worse than our put-upon heroine getting an instant connection to Martin Luther King, Jr. himself through her mother, and reading that the author is claiming to be a victim of being told to "GO BACK TO AFRICA" Syndrome like her Sue. Worse even than the fact that the senshi are given the role of being pro-A'Marie cheerleaders who threaten to kill people with their senshi powers (as opposed to, I don't know, going to the police to report a hate crime?). Yes, all of that was horrid in its own right, but what really made me double-take was the fact that Sailor Ryo-Ohki has a random sentence where we learn that Mina celebrated Hannukah. Yes. Hannukah. A holiday practically no one in Japan celebrates because there are only approximately 2,000 Jewish people in Japan - and most of them are foreigners. I.e. there are more people in total here than there are Jews in Japan - and they have way less land to fill in. Despite what projections we Americans might like to put on our favorite Japanese characters, there is a reason why there's no anime that mentions Hannukah. And why no character in Sailor Moon celebrates it even during the movie that takes place during the winter holidays!
I think it goes without saying that the amount of fail in this story is significant. Sailor Ryo-Ohki has made a pro-race story for her super-special self-insert, apparently in order to teach us about her 'culture and heritage' - but instead gives us a "DON'T HATE ME BECAUSE I'M BLACK JERKS" story where the sailor senshi are almost completely shoehorned into tertiary roles. Perhaps it is best that this series - yes, it was intended to be a series - was ultimately discontinued. I'm not sure what I would say if we had to deal with Tokyo's Very First Independence Day - I'm just saying.
Sailor Moon and related characters are copyrighted ©1991-2009 Naoko Takeuchi.