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Sailor Guardians (セーラー戦士; meaning "Sailor Senshi" or "Sailor Soldier") is a term referring to the main female protagonists of all versions of Sailor Moon. They are also referred to simply as Guardians.

Description

Prior to transforming, the Guardians look like average girls. They use transformation items to turn into their Sailor Guardian forms. Sailor Guardians, as classic magical girl heroines, have both civilian and magical identities. Each Guardian has a transformation sequence which grants her a uniform in her own theme-colors and her own kind of elemental power; these powers come from an object called a "Sailor Crystal" said to be within each of them.  Accessories gained with their uniform, such as Sailor Moon's tiara, can also be used as weapons. Usually during their initial awakening, the Sailor Guardians would have the symbol of their respective planet display on their forehead. According to Naoko Takeuchi, only females can be Sailor Guardians, although there is at least one male, Mamoru Chiba, has a Sailor Crystal and is the guardian over the Earth and gives himself the pseudonym "Tuxedo Mask", though he isn't called a Sailor Guardians. 

Etymology

In the DiC English adaptation of the anime, the term "Sailor Scout" was used instead (possibly meant as a reference to real-life military units, such as, the US Army Indian Scouts or the British Army Lovat Scouts).

Powers

Each of the Guardians have different elemental powers, sometimes connected to their respective planets. In addition to their elemental powers, the Guardians possessed abilities common to all of them like flight, unnamed energy attacks, teleportation, and limited telepathic connections to Usagi and Mamoru as well as themselves. These abilities are shown on numerous occasions.

In Act 29, Sailor Uranus, ascended into the air and ran off, with Usagi trailing behind her, showing sustained flight. Also, during the Dreams Arc, while Usagi and Mamoru were afflicted with the curse, the other Guardians would seem to feel something was wrong and mentally call out to them, which Usagi could hear. It was during the Stars arc that the Guardians were shown to have some teleportation ability, as seen when the Outer Sailor Guardians teleported to their castles or when the Sailor Starlights would constantly vanish when pursued. Throughout the manga, the Guardians would display unnamed energy attacks, such as when Sailor Iron Mouse first attacked, Sailor Jupiter fired an electric energy blast that seemed to cancel out the attack, or when all nine Guardians were under Cyprine's influence, they attacked each other with numerous unidentified attacks.

In many cases, Sailor Guardians had a civilian form in which they spent most of their time. By use of an item such as a Transformation Pen or Transformation Brooch, they could assume their Sailor Guardian form at will. Although transforming into a Sailor Guardian usually involved nothing more radical than a change of outfit, outside observers were not usually able to recognize even close friends or family members once they had assumed Sailor Guardian form. The mechanism that caused this was not known, although it was just as effective upon Sailor Guardians themselves as it was upon non-Guardians.

Uniforms and Power-Ups

Eternal sailor moon wall paper

The Sailor Guardians in their Eternal forms

The uniform worn by the Sailor Guardians resembles a popular style of Japanese school uniform, the sērā fuku or "sailor suit". Creator Naoko Takeuchi attributes the idea for this motif to her editor, Fumio Osano. Originally, each of the Guardians had her own fairly unique outfit, related to the others only in its basic form, but in later stages of character design Takeuchi settled on a more unified appearance. Within the Sailor Guardians, only the outfit worn by Sailor Venus during her time as Sailor V varies significantly from the others.

The uniforms of the Guardians not only show their femininity, they "perform it excessively in frilly, girly fashion". As the Guardians gain additional powers and insights, the features of their uniforms change to reflect these advances. Most of them have unique traits to begin with (such as Sailors Mars' and Uranus back-bow color alternating from her front bow, Sailors Mercury's and Pluto's lack of sleeves, Sailor Neptune's neck-pendant, or Sailor Saturn's flower-petal shaped sleeves and the spiky, star-shaped brooch on her front bow), but as the group becomes more powerful, their individual uniforms become more similar, until finally color schemes mark the only differences. The Guardians are frequently exceptions, but over the course of the series, the other characters pass through three basic phases:

  1. Their original forms resemble each other closely, but have some individual variety. The sub-groups show traces of theming: for instance, the Outer Sailor Guardians do not have stripes on their collars, while the Inner Sailor Guardians each have one, two or three (in the manga). In the manga, the Inner Senshi gain a few upgrades before fully changing to their second forms, as with the alteration of their brooches from circles to hearts.
  2. Their second forms become a little more similar to each other, but allow for some distinctions to remain, such as earrings and shoe-style. When Sailor Moon and Sailor Chibi Moon take on this form, they become "Super Sailor Moon" and "Super Sailor Chibi Moon". In the manga the others do not change their names accordingly, but in the anime they do.
  3. Their third forms replicate each other entirely in form, and generally reach an ornate peak. When Sailor Moon takes on this form, she becomes "Eternal Sailor Moon", gains wings and loses her tiara; the others do not reflect any of these three changes. This form never appears in the anime for anyone but Sailor Moon.

When the Sailor Guardians of the 30th century appear during the second story arc, they wear their original uniforms, without any enhancement.

The Sailor Quartet, although Sailor Guardians of the Solar System, don't follow the standard progression of power-ups. Instead the Sailor Quartet's uniforms combine elements of those worn by the Sailor Team in their first forms and in their final forms, with the Quartet's own image colors. The uniforms have one-layer skirts, belts, chokers and back-bows like those on the Sailor Team's first uniforms, with boots, gloves, brooches, leotards, and tiaras the same as the final forms. Their shoulder pads reflect the style of the final uniforms, but in white. Each member has unique earrings.21

Sailor Moon, whatever form she takes, always has a more elaborate costume than any of the others. Among other things, in her first form she has hair ornaments, in her second she adds a multi-colored skirt, and in her third she gains wings and a three-layered skirt. She also gains minor, individual power-ups more frequently than any other character. Sailor Chibi Moon progresses in similar fashion, down to the hair-ornaments, and her uniform as Super Sailor Chibi Moon is almost identical to her predecessor's. Her third form, on the other hand, is more similar to that of the rest of the Sailor Team than to that of Eternal Sailor Moon.

Sailor Guardians originating from outside the Solar System generally have very different and widely varying outfits, but one single feature, the sailor collar, connects them all.

Princesses of Their Own Planets

As mentioned in the anime, Luna and Artemis told the Sailor Guardians of the past, including the Silver Milennium, the Moon Kingdom, and the forbidden love of Princess Serenity and Prince Endymion. Luna even mentions how the Sailor Guardians were to support and protect the Moon Princess, but also mentions that each of Guardians were princesses, too, of their own respective planet.

Act 41 of the manga reveals the Sailor Guardians as princesses of the Solar System. Each one had her own castle, which she can call upon late in the series for power. This act first enables Sailor Moon to transform into Eternal Sailor Moon. The castles are named after moons, except for Mercury's and Venus'. Venus' castle is introduced long before the others', in the Sailor V manga, but she never mentions this to them.

In Act 45, Sailors' Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto actually visit their castles — huge structures orbiting around their respective planets. Each castle features viewscreens, forcefields, comm systems, and other forms of high technology; each comes under the protection of a Power Guardian, who appears as a miniature version of the Guardian she serves. Sailor Pluto states that she remembers her castle, and that they were given to all the Guardians by Queen Serenity at the time of their birth.

Takeuchi's Materials Collection artbook shows the detailed design of each princess's unique gown. The Guardians wear the gowns at key moments in the Stars manga, and also in the Original Picture Collection Volume IV. Flashbacks to the Silver Millennium, however, always show them dressed in their ordinary uniforms.

Sailor Guardians of the Solar System

Sailor Guardians from Outside the Solar System

Kinmoku Senshi

Sailor Guardians killed by the Shadow Galactica

Sailor Guardians of the Shadow Galactica

Other and Tribute Guardians

Trivia

  • Earth is the only planet that was never given an official Sailor Guardians, being represented by Tuxedo Mask instead.
  • Naoko Takeuchi has stated that only girls are allowed to be Sailor Guardian. She stated this when she was angered by the Three Lights being men and transforming into women in the anime.
  • Luna only confirmed the identities of Sailor Guardians as the princesses of the solar system in the DiC English dub of the first season; the original version did not confirm this.
  • It's unknown why nobody can tell the Sailor Guardians from their civilian alter egos. The Sailor Guardians do not wear masks as part of their uniforms. Their face is clearly shown and resembles that of their civilian forms.

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