Last Saturday, I watched the final day performance of the Sera Myu musical The Birth of a Legend. I loved and adored the copy of the original run and this musical was… very different. You can read the Storify of the livetweet here, and you can read on for some slightly more coherent thoughts now that I’ve had some time to let it sink into me.
As always, the fansubs I’m watching come from SeaofSerenity.net and hopefully one day soon I’ll actually remember to announce it in the livetweeting threads. I’m sorry I keep forgetting. 🙁
As I said, this musical changed a lot. A lot. For a start, its lost a number of secondary characters (Zoicite, Kunzite, Sailor Tin Nyanko, Sailor Mitis Kerokko) which meant an extensive rewrite the plot because several scenes were highly dependent on their presence. Such as yet another romance subplot for Ami that now couldn’t happen.
I wasn’t expecting the changes to be as extensive since the musical as it was seemed pretty good to me. I’d maybe rework some of the scenes to be more plot and less comedy, but it was by and large the most coherent of the lot. The revised edition… undid much of that for me. I liked some of the changes, though I’m not sure how much of that is down to being the ad libbed final day performance and how much of that is what the plot of the revision was like. But, by and large, it made the plot less coherent and I found myself eager to skip sections because the musical just wasn’t managing to hold my interest in those places. T_T
I WAS REALLY, REALLY SAD. I loved that musical last week. Loved it. It was funny and the timing was perfect and the way it played with the fourth wall was delightful.
I was sadder still because, you know, this musical was the very last musical for quite a number of cast members, such as, I think, all of the senshi. I wanted to love and adore this musical as much as I did the 1997 run. I wanted to be punched in the gut and brought to tears and to laugh at the silliness when things weren’t dire and then, at the end, sob along with the cast because they were saying farewell.
I managed the last part because Oh My God I was not prepared for the finale feels. I love The Birth of a Legend as a song, but wow is that a painful goodbye song when you know it’s the very final performance of the cast members.
And… Here’s a fun thing about Sera Myu. There’s a generally accepted idea that the first actress you see playing Sailor Moon is your Myu. Much in the same way that the very first Doctor whose adventures you follow is ‘your’ Doctor in Doctor Who. For me, the differences between the current revival musicals and the original Sera Myu musicals are big enough that I suspect I’ll end up with two Myu Moons that are ‘mine’, and Anza is most definitely one of them.
When I started this livetweet project with the Dark Kingdom revival, I admit that I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to get into the spirit of the musicals and that the extremely bright yellow wigs that are clearly wigs and the 90s costume choices would keep me from enjoying these musicals as much as I’d hoped. I was scared that the quality of the new musicals would ruin the originals for me. So far, that has not happened. These musicals, even when like this one they’re musicals that I don’t enjoy as much as I’d hoped, give me cheer and happiness.
And I’m still sad to move on to the second stage with an all new cast. Here is Densetsu Saitan as performed by the original cast in this senshuuraku performance of the musical. It also comes with bonus cast rendition of Double Moonlight Romance.