Manga of the Month: Codename Sailor V

Codename Sailor V (コードネームはセーラーV) by Naoko Takeuchi

Any Sailor Moon fan will tell you that it was a long-time wish for Codename Sailor V to get an English translation. It is so special to us because Sailor V is a character that appears in Sailor Moon but has a much larger back story that most of us couldn’t actually read. Sailor V is a legendary warrior already in the Sailor Moon series and her exploits (and video games) are often mentioned. And again alongside Sailor Moon it is a title that helped transform the magical girl genre. Beyond that though, it is a fun adventure for anyone with a young heart. No deep Sailor Moon knowledge needed since it comes before, too.

Codename Sailor V follows 14-year-old Minako who becomes a champion of justice, somewhat against her will, thanks to a talking cat named Artemis. She battles dark forces in the town as they manipulate the masses through various schemes. Mina has great energy as a lead with a peppy and amusingly dramatic attitude. While her studies suffer as she’s more apt to play video games and daydream about idols, she excels in athletics. This makes the action scenes fun as she loves kicking baddies, literally. Sailor V also becomes something of an idol herself as the story goes on getting her own video game, fan club, and best of all police detective rival who vows to catch her. There is a plenty of humor which should be obvious and nothing gets incredibly serious but Mina does start to realize something bigger is going on. While all the incidents are tied to a deeper story, they are mostly quick adventures.

At only two volumes this is a great, quick read! It adds a little something extra for fans of Sailor Moon but can also entertain with its poppy fantasy. Of course if you want to know the bigger story you’ll have to pick up Sailor Moon next (like you weren’t going to anyway).

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