Sailor Moon, PQ Angels, and Same-Sex Kissing

  • This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn more.
Mar 8, 2012
4,507
2,864
1,665
#1
Despite having at least four explicitly queer characters (Haruka, Michiru, Seiya, and Hawk's-Eye) plus many others who are arguably so, in 60 chapters, 10 side stories, and a 16 chapter prequel/sister series, the Sailor Moon manga featured only one same-sex kiss (between Uranus and Moon), and it's an assault at that:



Yet, in the four chapter run of her follow-up series, PQ Angels, Naoko included nearly a dozen same-sex kisses:



So what gives? Why the discrepancy? Why is the long-running series with multiple queer characters, two of whom are in a committed relationship, bereft of same-sex kisses (with the only one not even between the aforementioned couple) when the short-lived series with no expressly queer characters has a bunch of them?

Was there some sort of cultural shift in 1997 Japan that made same-sex kissing in shoujo manga more acceptable?
Was there some sort of management/editorial change at Kodansha/Nakayoshi? (I know Osabu didn't work as Naoko's editor on PQ Angels; might he be responsible for the lack of SSKs in the Sailor Moon manga?)
Is it a question of tone/genre? Because PQ Angels is more of a cheeky comedy, with the kisses being played for laughs more than anything, is that what made it okay?

I just don't get why Naoko would be apparently unwilling to let Haruka and Michiru kiss, but more than willing to fill PQ Angels with sapphic liplocks.

For anyone familiar with the series running in Nakayoshi and RunRun during this time (1991-1998~), were there any that featured queer characters/same-sex couples/same-sex kisses? If so, how were they handled?
 

Seira Hazuki

Aurorae Lunares
Jan 17, 2007
2,132
1,155
1,665
#3
Is it a question of tone/genre? Because PQ Angels is more of a cheeky comedy, with the kisses being played for laughs more than anything, is that what made it okay?
It's pretty much this. P and Q not only kiss to transform, they need to kiss random strangers to change to and from cockroaches. As arbitrary as that is, I think there's a distinction between that and a ROMANTIC kiss between two women.
Still, PQ Angels seemed pretty risque for a shoujo manga and I have to wonder if the line about Kodanasha losing the manuscripts was simply BS. Maybe they didn't want to depict straight up yuri and they just pulled the plug?

Naoko Takeuchi's Toki*Meca Spoilers:
Spoiler: show

However, Naoko did actually portray a ROMANTIC same sex kiss between two characters in Toki*Meca. The only thing is that, similar to Haruka and Seiya, one half of that couple was assumed to be MALE during the chapter the kiss was depicted. It was only at the end of the manga that we find out they're actually a woman. So again, it seems like you can portray same sex kisses in shoujo but you kinda have to skirt around the edges a bit.
 

MariaTenebre

Lumen Cinereum
Jul 22, 2009
5,032
377
165
#4
Yeah I hated the whole Haruka and Usagi kiss it was yet again another of Naoko Takeuchi's attempts to glorify Usagi and Mamoru's relationship at the expense of other characters. I would have much rather we saw a Haruka and Michiru kiss then have Haruka cheat on Michiru with Usagi. Also since you mentioned this I don't know if there is evidence of Hawk's Eye being gay in the manga he did dress like a girl in the manga and unlike the other members of the Amazon Trio tried to be Makoto's friend instead of seducing her but I don't know if that is just a disguise and a scheme vs. that he is actually gay.
 

imaginationgirl

Lumen Cinereum
Aug 16, 2014
1,886
263
165
USA
#7
I think they are two reasons.A she just didn't thought about it.And they weren't the main couple.B Maybe same sex kissing is a no no in shojo manga.I hardly see any same-sex couples in shojo manga
 

sapphire91

Aurorae Lunares
Jul 6, 2018
2,083
1,899
1,665
#8
I think they are two reasons.A she just didn't thought about it.And they weren't the main couple.B Maybe same sex kissing is a no no in shojo manga.I hardly see any same-sex couples in shojo manga
Utena is considered shoujo. Other titles like Dear Brother for example are shoujo, not shounen ai and still had relationships and affection between girls. She just didn't plan it as you said. Still we might get it in Eternal or Stars. Even if not on the anime itself but additional art or specials or something.
 

imaginationgirl

Lumen Cinereum
Aug 16, 2014
1,886
263
165
USA
#9
Utena is considered shoujo. Other titles like Dear Brother for example are shoujo, not shounen ai and still had relationships and affection between girls. She just didn't plan it as you said. Still we might get it in Eternal or Stars. Even if not on the anime itself but additional art or specials or something.
My understanding Utena anime had both Utena, and Anty.(I forgot the dark-skinned girl name) Got together in the anime, but in the manga they didn't.
 
Jun 6, 2006
3,080
510
665
30
NJ
#10
This is an excellent topic. I don't know what was so taboo about it, even the anime avoided it. If memory serves, the only time we got a "same sex" kiss was Fisheye kissing a passed out Mamoru in episode 148 (ah, this series and its obsession with non consensual kissing...). Even then, it's not clear if Fisheye kissed his cheek, or if it was a kiss on the lips.

And before anyone tries to say "TOEI NEVER ANIMATED SAME SEX KISSING!!" there are a number of examples of earlier productions - Patalliro, Stop Hibari-kun, A Door into Summer...
 

Neo Moonlight

Lumen Cinereum
Dec 7, 2009
926
252
165
30
#11
Even then, it's not clear if Fisheye kissed his cheek, or if it was a kiss on the lips.
Nah, it was pretty clear. They just obscured it because the point wasn't the kiss in itself (which was technically assault since Mamoru made it very clear he didn't want to kiss him when he was awake lol), but to focus on the fact that Fisheye was having emotions like a human despite not actually being human technically.

Probably partially out of taboo too.
 
Feb 4, 2020
36
36
15
Crystal Tokyo
#17
I do not think that Naoko didn’t draw Michiru and Haruka kissing because she didn’t want to show same sex kiss. She simply planned outers as (just) supporting characters, and romance in Sailor Moon as Usagi’s love story exclusively. Haruka and Michiru were not as important to Naoko to develop their relationship. I wish their kiss was somewhere there, but understand why it never happened