TAMASHII BUDDIES Sailor Moon !
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魂バディーズとは、TAMASHII NATONSが誇るキャラクター造形のノウハウを約9cmサイズにすべて集約した新フィギュアシリーズ！ 日本発、世界へ広がる新たなキャラクターアレンジのスタンダードです。
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Phobos and Deimos
First Appearance: Act 3 (manga); Episode 10 (anime)
Phobos and Deimos are the names of Rei Hino/Sailor Mars’s crows/guardian sprites. Similarly to Luna (Usagi’s guardian), Artemis (Minako’s guardian), and Diana (Chibiusa’s guardian), they took the form of an animal (crows, in this case) and watched over their charge, protecting and comforting her when needed.
Phobos and Deimos are first introduced as two crows who inhabit Hikawa Shrine. Rei shares a very special bond with them; later in the manga, it’s revealed that Rei first met them on the day she went to live with her grandfather at Hikawa Shrine (which happened after her mother’s death and being abandoned by her father). Rei suddenly spotted two crows and ran to them; instead of flying away, the crows happily allowed Rei to pet them, and she informed her grandfather that they “told” her their names were Phobos and Deimos. From that day on, Rei and the crows were very good friends, and Rei was often seen laughing and playing with them. Phobos and Deimos were Rei’s only true friends before meeting the rest of the Senshi (as she was considered unapproachable at her school, leading to a lack of friends), and she often relied on them for support and comfort. In addition, Phobos and Deimos would occasionally help Rei with her sixth sense; for example, at the beginning of the fourth arc, they give Rei a newspaper and a tarot card about the upcoming solar eclipse, warning her that it was a bad omen.
Phobos and Deimos are introduced along with Rei towards the start of the series. It’s made clear early on that they’re no ordinary crows; they have the ability to sense evil and would attack anyone deemed a threat in order to protect Rei. When Usagi and her friends visit the Hikawa Shrine, they begin to attack her, leading Rei to believe that Usagi was a demon in disguise. After trying to exorcise her with an ofuda, however, Rei realized that Usagi was just an ordinary girl; she apologizes, explaining that Phobos and Deimos usually never attack humans (no official explanation is ever given as to why Phobos and Deimos attacked Usagi; however, it’s probably safe to assume that they were able to sense the Senshi power within Usagi and probably dive-bombed her to get Rei’s attention). While Rei was trying to investigate the disappearances at her shrine, Phobos and Deimos stuck by her side and were with her when she confronted Jadeite, the true source behind the vanishings. Phobos and Deimos seem to be tied to Sailor Mars’s power, as they appeared circling overhead after Rei transformed for the first time and helped her defeat Jadeite.
In the anime, Phobos and Deimos were just crows. However, in the manga, they were something else entirely. After Rei was targeted by the Dead Moon Circus, Phobos and Deimos came to her rescue and revealed their true humanoid forms. Being twins, they have identical appearances, with only coloration setting them apart: Phobos wears red and Deimos wears blue/purple (the exact color depends on the artwork). After saving Rei from a nightmare and revealing their true forms, they give her the Mars Crystal and the Mars Arrow, which allows her to transform into Super Sailor Mars and perform her ultimate attack, Mars Flame Sniper.
Later on, in the Stars arc, Phobos and Deimos are confronted by one of Sailor Galaxia’s minions, Sailor Lead Crow. It’s then revealed that Phobos, Deimos, and Lead Crow are all from the same planet, Coronis. A horrified Phobos and Deimos accuse Lead Crow of murdering Coronis’s true guardian, Sailor Coronis, which she confirms. Lead Crow then expresses jealously towards the twins, revealing that the two of them were chosen by Queen Serenity herself to be the guardians of the Princess of Mars. Sailor Mars and Sailor Venus arrive to try and save the twins, but are too late; Lead Crow steals their star seeds, reducing their physical bodies to ash. Although Phobos and Deimos are never shown again in the manga, it’s safe to assume that they’re alive and well, considering that Usagi eventually liberated all of the stolen star seeds and sent them back to their home planets.
- Phobos and Deimos are named for Mars’s twin moons. In turn, those moons take their names from the Greek gods Phobos (fear) and Deimos (terror). They were the twin sons of the god of war, Ares/Mars, and the goddess of love, Aphrodite/Venus. Phobos and Deimos would always accompany their father on the battlefield; in the same way, the Phobos and Deimos (who are also twins) of the Sailor Moon universe always accompany their Princess (Rei/Mars).
- Which twin is Phobos and which is Deimos actually isn’t completely clear; in the fourth artbook, Phobos was the one in purple and Deimos was the one in red. However, the fifth artbook reversed their positions, making Phobos the red one and Deimos the purple one. Because the fifth artbook was the last one (discounting the Materials Collection), most people assume that Phobos is the red one and Deimos is the purple one.
- The manga states that Phobos and Deimos were training to become soldiers before the fall of their mother star, Coronis. Their status as warriors contrasts with the Lunar Cats, who act as advisors.
- Even though Phobos and Deimos are just crows and (presumably) non-magical in the anime, their behavior still makes a lot of sense. Crows are among the most intelligent animals in the entire world; they recognize human faces and act accordingly (for example, if a person is kind to them, they’ll lower their guard and become friendly; however, if a person is mean, they’ll become aggressive and hold a grudge), use tools and problem solving, have very good memory, are able to count, and much more. Seeing how Rei treats Phobos and Deimos as her friends and often feeds and plays with them, it’s no wonder that such extremely intelligent animals would also become attached to her and want to stay with her.
- In the manga, Phobos and Deimos take the place of Rei’s Sailor Power Guardian, Guardian Mars, by giving her the Mars Crystal and the Mars Arrow; the same thing happens with Minako and Artemis (Ami and Mako receive their items from Guardian Mercury and Guardian Jupiter, respectively).
- Unlike the Lunar Cats, Phobos and Deimos could not talk while in their animal form.
- Contrary to popular belief, Phobos and Deimos are not Sailor Senshi, although they do possess star seeds that are on the same level of a Senshi’s and they are warriors. The Lunar Cats are the same way.
- Their earrings are identical to the ones worn by Sailor Mars.
Sailor Moon Symbolism: Butterflies
Butterflies are a common, reoccurring emblem throughout the Sailor Moon series. Butterflies are seen as:
- A distinctive part of Super Sailor Moon’s fuku and transformation. Not only does the back bow of her fuku shaped like a butterfly, butterfly wings appear behind her during her transformation and attacks and swarms of multicolored butterflies appear around her during many parts of the S arc.
- The Messiah, or the foretold savior of the world, is always depicted with butterfly wings.
- Neo-Queen Serenity, like Super Sailor Moon, has a back bow that’s shaped like a butterfly, though hers is even more pronounced.
- Sailor Heavy Metal Papillon, the Soul Hunter and final member of the Sailor Animamates, has her appearance entirely based on a butterfly. ”Papillon” is even French for “butterfly.”
- Princess Kakyuu’s aura was symbolized by a butterfly (or sometimes, an entire swarm of butterflies) made of red light. Before she made her first physical appearance, they signified her presence.
- Star Seeds are also associated with butterflies. Sailor Galaxia’s Star Seed, the Light of Hope, took on the form of a butterfly made of pink light. In the manga, the souls that Sailor Heavy Metal Papillon looked after also took on butterfly forms.
The butterfly is most commonly associated with the soul, rebirth, and a profound, powerful transformation (or metamorphosis). Butterflies are most commonly associated with these concepts because of their life cycle; born as chubby, slow-moving caterpillars that do nothing but eat and try to avoid predators, they experience a total transformation after wrapping themselves in a chrysalis for a couple of weeks. When they finally emerge, the metamorphosis is complete; instead of caterpillars, they are now elegant, beautiful butterflies that are free to travel anywhere they please. In a sense, the caterpillar has experienced rebirth. The purpose of the life of every butterfly is to set everything that was once known aside and to embrace an entire new way of being.
These concepts are heavily present in Sailor Moon. The butterflies surrounding Super Sailor Moon represent her powerful transformation from Sailor Moon to Super Sailor Moon as well as symbolizing the strength of her soul. Similarly, Neo-Queen Serenity’s butterfly wings represent her change from the ordinary Usagi Tsukino to the Queen of Earth, Neo-Queen Serenity. The Messiah’s (or, Usagi Tsukino) wings signify her role as the savior of Earth; not only did she save Earth, she actually caused it to be reborn after the Silence.
The other butterflies represent souls. As a Star Seed is essentially the soul and essence of its carrier, it makes perfect sense for it to be represented by the butterfly. Similarly, red butterflies represented Princess Kakyuu’s aura, or soul. Finally, Sailor Heavy Metal Papillon was known as the “Soul Hunter;” her role within Shadow Galactica was to watch over the remnants of the souls that had been reaped by Galaxia. Fittingly, she was stationed in a graveyard, the final resting place of the dead before they went on to the next life.