Like many kids, I grew up watching Saturday morning cartoon. Through this, I was introduced to anime.
As a girl who grew up with two older siblings (and with my brother as the eldest), I was taught to be rough around the edges. “Girly girls stink! I love video games!” and all that gross gender role-y bullshit. But on Saturdays, I could wake up before everyone else in my family and sneakily watch dubbed magical girl shows on TV.
It started with Mew Mew Power, the English dub of Tokyo Mew Mew and then spread to Magical DoReMi, the dub of Ojamajo Doremi. Of course, I had my taste of Sailor Moon when it was on Toonami or whatever, but this was different. I watched Sailor Moon with my siblings, but Mew Mew Power and Doremi were mine.
The awkward voice lines in the dubs made me blush frantically and I felt embarrassed and ashamed to be watching the shows — but I couldn’t stay away. It was so nice to see cute girls doing powerful things. I dug further down the rabbit hole as resources (like the internet) became available to me.
Shugo Chara!!, Cardcaptor Sakura and Pretty Cure just made me feel so alive. These young girls could do anything, so why couldn’t I?
Why was I forcing myself to stay away from “girly” things? Why did I associate pink and sparkles with being weak? This all snapped out of me. These girls were kicking butt and looking awesome while doing it. Women could be strong and they didn’t have to “act like a boy” to do it.
The romance, the fighting, the shiny transformation sequences ... it was all so appealing. I’d be lying if I said these shows didn’t shape me as a human. I truly believed that just like how Sakura had her “unbeatable spell,” I did, too. I was absolutely persuaded that everything would turn out just fine for me, because it always did for the characters in these shows.
Life went on. I grew up, but those feelings never left me. No matter what problem I’m facing, I’m sure everything will be okay. It’s always okay for Ichigo and Amu, so why would I be any different?
That’s why I love the Star Guardian skins so much. For many, they represent childhood and for others, they’re just cute and shiny! I’m sure there are many people like me, who see the Star Guardian skins and see them as a reminder that life will turn out okay.
I remember when Star Guardian Lux was announced. I was so hyped and excited, just like 10-year-old Julia sitting in front of the TV. As more and more skins were revealed, that spark would renew in me every time. The silly and cliché storyline behind the Burning Bright guardians made me laugh and really filled with me an intense feeling of nostalgia. I genuinely felt like a little kid again. I hadn’t been that excited for anything in a long time.
Especially in these harder times where life seems bleak and filled with hate for many, little reminders of how things work in magical girls shows comfort me. I know life is not an anime, but that won’t stop me from using these shows to get myself out of depressive pits and bad times. Magical girls taught me that everything will turn out “daijoubu” (fine) and that is a constant reminder whenever I use or see a Star Guardian skin.