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Volume 9 wooh! (Changed text... uh...)
on February 24, 2014
I love this volume. It's the old volume 2 and 3 of Supers combined (although it begins just after Usagi and Chibi Usa have been age-swapped and it cuts off just before the Outer Senshi show up at the circus). This time the pages are bigger, giving each panel more space than it used to have. I looked back at the original tankoban and the ink is actually lighter. It's like the original we got in the US was copied two or three times too many and then squished, to the point that a lot of details, like facial expressions, are invisible or close to it. But now you can see it all, and it adds a lot to the story! Chibi Usa especially suffered from a loss of her mouth, typically, because she had so many expressions that chibis often have, and it's nice to see that her mouth has returned! Some other changes have been made - noses, eyes and limbs and such. Background details are restored and some effects have been added with the update.
I really don't get some of the translation decisions. Why exactly did Rei swear her 'chastity' to Princess Serenity? I understand that she's not into men (and maybe romance in general), but what? On the other hand, they did do some good fixes. The Yeats' poem is in there correctly, and I know that grated some people. By and large, this translation does stick to the old one, but there are some that just don't work.
The translation notes aren't the same as past novels, but a couple are kind of useless, as has been the case in previous novels. More interesting notes might have explained some of the mythology being used or maybe used some of Takeuchi's notes for character creation. But whatever.
Also, while I still love this series and the art is still quite beautiful... this series does not have a lot of great art. My roommate and I figured it out: if all you're doing is glancing at it, it looks really pretty. But if you stare at it any longer, it all comes apart. Proportions are off, limbs are wonky and sometimes cut off or missing, Takeuchi likes the void background a lot and there are various other issues.
Other than that, I love that all these volumes have been re-published. I hope we get the newer publication of the manga that they have in Japan sometime.