Ian Andreas Miller. 2 April 2002.
Many sources claim that Sailor Phi, Sailor Chi, Sailor Lethe, Sailor Mnemosyne, and Sailor Galaxia are members of the Sailor Anima-Mates. That claim is inaccurate, however. If we look at the original Japanese text, we may get a better understanding of what Naoko Takeuchi had in mind when she wrote her story. This article shows the reader who the five members of the Sailor Anima-Mates really are and debunks some of the common misconceptions that are associated with those characters. The final section of this article shows a short list of relevant terms.
This article deals with the members of the Sailor Anima-Mates who appear in the anime and manga continuities of Bishjo Senshi Sr Mn. I may write about the members who appear only in the Sera Myu stories sometime in the future.
Sailor Phi and Sailor Galaxia
In volume sixteen of the Bishjo Senshi Sr Mn manga, Sailor Phi says, “Waga haika Sr Anima-Meitsu” ()1, which means “my underlings, the Sailor Anima-Mates.” That means that Sailor Phi does not call herself “Sailor Anima-Mates.” She could not be her own underling! Sailor Galaxia clearly is not Sailor Phi’s underling, either.
Sailor Phi and Sailor Chi
When Sailor Chi and Sailor Phi formally introduce themselves in volume eighteen, they do not mention the name Sailor Anima-Mates. At that point in the story, they call themselves the Star Gardeners (), Sailor Phi () and Sailor Chi ()2. Sailor Heavy Metal Papillon calls herself the final soldier of the Sailor Anima-Mates3. Chi is still alive after Sailor Chibi Moon and the Sailor Quartetto defeat Papillon. If Phi and Chi were really Sailor Anima-Mates, then why does Papillon say what she says?
The Term Anima
In Jungian psychology, the term anima can mean “The feminine inner personality, as present in the unconscious of the male. It is in contrast to the animus, which represents masculine characteristics.”4 The popular “it is a pun” argument may not work well in this case because the term used in Jungian psychology is no way mentioned or referred to in the story. There is always the possibility of forcing a word to be pun when it was not intended to be one.
The Latin term anima has several meanings. This is the anima entry of an online Latin dictionary. Do any of the definitions of that term have to do with the Sailor Anima-Mates? It would be a good idea to examine some of those definitions.
- Anima in Latin can mean, “air, a current of air, a breeze, wind.” Some fans may say that the members of the Sailor Anima-Mates possess special powers that have to do with wind and air. They never do anything that suggests such a thing, however. Sailor Lead Crow performs Galactica Tornado, but Sailor Phi (who we know is not one of the Sailor Anima-Mates) performs Galactica Plants Blizzard and even Sailor Kakyu (who is not even a follower of Sailor Galaxia) performs Kinmoku Fusion Tempest. Sailor Jupiter can also perform Flower Hurricane and Jupiter Coconut Cyclone, but she does not perform them even when she is under Sailor Galaxia’s control. Sailor Heavy Metal Papillon could perform her Galactica Scales (according to the Materials Collection), but there is no evidence that it has anything to do with wind and air.
- That term can also mean “the vital principle, the breath of life” or “life” in Latin. Why would that term mean “the vital principle, the breath of life” or “life” when Kakyu says that the members of the Sailor Anima-Mates “have been crushed by the power of Galaxia’s bracelets, and are without life”? That significance of the characters and the “the vital principle, the breath of life” or “life” definitions of anima do not match.
- The term anima can also refer to the rational soul of man. The term man in this case refers not just to male people, but to all humans. The Sailor Anima-Mates are pseudo-sailor soldiers who are forced to do irrational things. When they are under Sailor Galaxia’s control, they kill other sailor soldiers. Would they then be fit to represent the idea of the rational soul of man? They would not. (Yes, their true selves might have represented that idea, but only their evil, unreal selves are ever members of the Sailor Anima-Mates.)
If Ms. Takeuchi wished to hint at the Latin term anima, or the Jungian anima, it would have been nice if she did a better job in indicating that. When we look at the different definitions of that Latin term, we should see that none of them can be applied only to the Sailor Anima-Mates and not to the others sailor soldiers. In other words, the Latin term anima and the Jungian term anima do not refer to any particular characteristic of the Sailor Anima-Mates that the other sailor soldiers lack.
Anima, Short for Animal
The Anima part of the name Sailor Anima-Mates makes sense in this context if we say that it is a clipped (or abbreviated) version of the word animal. Ms. Takeuchi might have had other ideas for the Anima part of the name, but the animal reference is much more noticeable. The Japanese approximate the word animal by writing the katakana characters animaru5.
Sailor Lead Crow calls herself the third soldier of the Sailor Anima-Mates, and Sailor Heavy Metal Papillon calls herself the final soldier of the Sailor Anima-Mates. Sailor Phi refers to Sailor Tin Nyanko as one of the Sailor Anima-Mates. What do those three characters have in common? There are terms in their names that have to do with metals and animals. Sailor Iron Mouse and Sailor Aluminum Seirn also have names that fit that pattern. (A siren was an animal-like creature from classical mythology. Sirens were often depicted as birds with faces of women. Seirn wears earrings that are in the shape of a bird’s wings, so the bird idea was meant.)
After Mouse and Seirn fail, Phi requests Sailor Galaxia’s forgiveness. She also says that she takes all of the responsibility for the failures of Mouse and Seirn. Sailor Galaxia praises Sailor Phi for for having obtained the two Sailor Crystals of Sailor Mercury and Sailor Jupiter. Not long after that, Sailor Galaxia tells Sailor Phi that it is obvious that the Sailor Anima-Mates are no match for the Sailor Starlights and the sailor soldiers of our Solar System. She makes that comment before Sailor Lead Crow appears. We should understand that the sailor soldiers of the Solar System and the Sailor Starlights fight at least one member of the Sailor Anima-Mates before Sailor Galaxia sends off Sailor Lead Crow. We know that Sailor Phi has underlings, so we know why she would be taking all of the responsibility for the failures. She is responsible for the actions of her underlings. If Mouse and Seirn were not Sailor Phi’s underlings, Phi would not have a good and relevant reason to take that responsibility. Since the Sailor Anima-Mates are the only underlings of Sailor Phi who are relevant to the conversation, Mouse and Seirn are Sailor Anima-Mates.
Mouse, Seirn, Crow, Nyanko, and Papillon are fairly close to each other in the “All Characters” section of the Original Picture Collection V. They are relatively closer to each other than the other members of Shadow Galactica are to them. That suggests that the five of them are more closely grouped together.
One Anima-Mate? Many Anima-Mates?
The characters are collectively referred to as the Sailor Anima-Mates.6 The name Anima-Meitsu can mean either Sailor Anima-Mate or Sailor Anima-Mates. Sailor Lead Crow tells Phobos and Deimos (two miniature women who can become crows) that she is a Sailor Anima-Mate who swears her loyalty to Sailor Galaxia.
Sailor Galaxia’s Other Underlings
The Anima in the name Sailor Anima-Mates is most likely a shorted form of animal. Nobody thinks of Sailor Lethe and Sailor Mnemosyne as Sailor Anima-Mates. Moreover, their names do not have anything to do with animals. The evil versions of the sailor soldiers of our solar system do not have names that pertain to animals, and they are not thought of as Sailor Anima-Mates. Consequently, one should not think of them as Sailor Anima-Mates.
Not “Sailor Anima Maids”!
Some fans and Web sites claim that the Sailor Anima-Mates can also be called “Sailor Anima Maids.” It is unlikely that “Anima Maids” would be approximated by . The is a tsu, not a dsu. If it were “Anima Maids,” then Ms. Takeuchi would probably have used .
Anima-Mates? Animamates? Animates?
There are several Roman-letter spellings that have come from the katakana characters . Fans tend to write Anima-Mates, Animamates, Anima Mates, and Animates. The katakana characters can represent any of the first three variations, but they do not represent the fourth one. The Japanese would use the katakana characters to approximate the term animates.
Anima Mates, Anima-Mates, and Animamates are all technically acceptable. Unfortunately, there are no definite rules about when to hyphenate compound nouns. A hyphen may be considered a middle way between separation (spaces: Anima Mates) and complete integration (no spaces and no hyphens: Animamates), but the modern tendency is to use fewer hyphens in compound words. (Of course, that does not mean that no hyphens should be used.) Since we do not know how much Ms. Takeuchi wanted to separate or integrate the two compounds Anima and Mates, it is best to use Anima-Mates to indicate some of the separation and some of the complete integration. The Anima Mates spelling indicates the separation, but none of the complete integration. It also gives people the impression that the word anima (not animal) was meant. The Animamates spelling indicates the complete integration, but none of the separation. That spelling’s mama part may encourage mispronunciation because it becomes difficult to determine whether mates is a component of the name.