Jadeite:

The Actor

JadeiteJadeite was the first of the Dark Kingdom kings to appear.

Duh.

Want me to tell you some more about him?

Good. Or too bad, depending on what your answer was.

And though I'm sure you already know this (unless you've never heard anything about the first few episodes of the anime... in which case, I'm sure you'll pick up fast), consider it review. Come on, he's so cuteÖ

Anyway, Jadeite made his grand entrance in episode number one. And, truthfully, he wasnít that impressing. He was there; he sent a youma to take energy from shoppers at the Osa-P jewelry store; the newly-discovered Sailormoon made short work of it; Jadeite was mad. Actually, that is the gist of most of Jadeite's episodes, as long as you replace "shoppers at the Osa-P jewelry store" with "listeners to the radio program Midnight Zero" or "visitors to an amusement park" or "travelers on a cruise line for couples" and perhaps exchange "Sailormoon" with "Sailormoon and Sailormercury" or "Sailormoon, Sailormercury, and Sailormars".

Poor boy. I will note here that I no longer regularly call him "Jed", as I did earlier; it's too dub-ish for my current tastes.  However, I don't like "Jade" much as a nickname for him (isn't that a girl's name?), so... um... well, his human alias is "Jay Daito" (clever boy!  Did we think of this all by ourselves?)... but that's not my thing, either.  Oh, well.  His name will do, for now.

Ever wonder what energy looks like?Jadeite as a character definitely had the least opportunity to develop. He'd go around doing menacing things, he'd growl sometimes when he was upset, he'd make funny little villain monologues. Really, though, he lacked many character quirks and the defining relationships that the others had: Zoisite and Nephrite were enemies, Nephrite had that little thing goin' on with Naru-chan, Zoisite and Kunzite were lovers, Kunzite and Endymion were enemies. And Jadeite was by himself.

He did pretty decently at what he did; though Nephrite would later criticize his methods, he did get his job done to some extent. Until, of course, the job expanded to getting rid of the Sailorsenshi. Queen Beryl should have realized that as the heroines, they are not going to die by the hand of evil.

I suppose that if she'd realized it, it wouldnít have been much of a show. But I'm digressing. Again.

So he made his last-ditch effort in episode number thirteen, desperate to annihilate his enemies. Beryl, witch that she is, had declared that she was angry at his losing her valued youma Tetis (though Tetis did volunteer herself to him), and so she was allowing him only one chance left to make it up and kill the senshi, and he gave it a good shot. For him, that is. He made a threatening illusion to get them to come out to the airport, and there first discovered their identities by watching them change, then attacked them in a number of ways, including with mudmen, lightning, and airplanes. When Tuxedo Kamen showed up like he so often did in that season, Jadeite fought him to near death. If Tux hadn't been the leading man of the show, he would have died, but as a hero he slipped through a plot hole and ended up alive at the episode's end.

Poor, poor Jadeite.Because of his failure, upon his return to the Dark Kingdom, Beryl iced him in eternal sleep, with the words that he knew the identities of the senshi frozen on his lips forever.

Awww.

Sorry, though, kid, but your death scene didnít move me to tears. Looked pretty good in that crystal-thingy, though.

He was, however, the first villain killed by a superior, paving the way for those such as Zoisite, Esmeraude, Saffir, Demando, Kaolinite (the second time), Sailorironmouse, and Sailoraluminumsiren. Lucky him -- Jadeite the trailblazer!  Pity he couldn't quite appreciate the honor...

As previously stated, Jadeite as a character was not the most memorable to have graced Sailormoon. In fact, when I rate the kings, he comes in last on my list, if simply by a process of elimination. (I like the others better, so that's why he comes in last, not because I donít like him). But he does deserve some slack. He was the first villain to battle the senshi, and this was during a time that the animators were too busy creating and developing "good guy" characters, and everyone knows that in a case like that, villains get shafted. Plus, in quite a few episodes, he's badly animated. No, no, sometimes he looks very good, but in some the animators hadn't quite gotten their act together. Poor kid.

Jadeite can be both cute AND evil.This doesnít mean that Jadeite was a bad character. He had a good many quality features -- even disregarding the countless facets fanfic writers have given him in their attempts to mold his character into something they wanted.  Certainly, he's the easiest to take liberties with... it's hard to change a personality when there's little to begin with, right?  But anyway.

First: his looks. All of the kings are pretty good-lookin' gentlemen, and Jadeite is no exception. Tall and muscular, but not overly so, with a face that manages to be little-boy and subtly sinister at the same time. His eyes are a lovely cold blue-violet. His short, bouncy, blond hair looks like it could be in a shampoo commercial. (I personally want to see him violently shake his head to see if it springs back and forth and lands perfectly. I'm betting it would.) His looks arenít completely unusual -- and he uses this to his advantage, winning people over with his above-average average "boy next door" look that can be very cute.

Second: his dress sense. He did wear something other than the normal Dark Kingdom Shitennou uniform, and yet he never disguised himself as a hero or heroine. (funny as that would beÖ). Sure, some of the outfits were pretty funky, but they worked okay. I think he likes hats, especially, and I have a sneaking suspicion that he needs glasses but refuses to wear them with his uniform out of vanity. I'm sure all of the Kings are very vain.

Third: he's available. He has no significant other, all you Jeddy-lovers!  One problem, though. He's a drawing. Donít get your hopes too high -- but you can always imagine!  However, don't make it your life.  Seriously.  That's just wrong.

Jadeite likes the tough women.Fourth: his attitude. He may be at times sickeningly subservient to Queen Beryl, but basically he's pretty badass in the way he deals with the senshi and with his youma. He's mean, he's nasty. He's a  good villain in that respect.

On that topic (sorta), this opens up yet another subtle aspect of his personality.  Save the youma Tetis, (who was actually not under his command at all but under Beryl's), the possessed men from the gym in episode four, and the princess-doll youma of episode eleven, Jadeite's youma tend to be... well... scary.  In fact, I think they're the scariest, least-human Monsters-of-the-day that I've ever seen in Sailormoon.  I mean, his minions range from sinuous, muscle-bound women who contort and flex and turn into deadly weapons using only their bodies to outright monsters.  And I'm not talkin' Nephrite's rather-feminine spider-thing.  I'm talkin' a big ol' scary blueish dragon, with tail, fangs, the whole bit.  He's got youma who can turn their heads completely around, youma with big teeth, youma with the scariest eyes you've ever seen, youma who are basically vampires.  So what does this say about Jadeite?

I personally have several theories.  The boring option is that, being that these were the initial episodes of the show, the animators wanted to put some flash into the opening episodes by making Usagi-chan's first battles frightening, difficult ones.  And yes, they may work.  Me, though, I like either one of two alternate theories:

1)  Jadeite's a control-freak sexist dominator who has a fetish for being in control of tough ladies.

2) Jadeite's a masochist who has a fetish for being around dominatrix-types.

On top of that, his comments to the Sailorsenshi in episode 13 display another sort of sexism ("Can't you do anything without men?  What silly women."), and yet, of the Shitennou, he is the most subservient to Queen Beryl-sama.  So those two contrasting viewpoints, plus his type of youma, add up to some sort of sexual confusion in this character.  But then, hey, his unclear issues with women and possible fetishes put him more on a level with the other kings'... er... deviations from the norm, right?  And if you don't understand that, just think about it.  You'll eventually figure out what I mean.  I hope.

Okay, okay, we'll get off that subject and back to the list of why Jadeite is cool. 

The Midnight Zero show is past my bedtime.Fifth: his abilities. He can pose as just about anything and pull it off. He's got a good radio voice; he has a good way with people (he can be quite a showman, a good leader, a strong salesman, and very influencing at times); he has an ear for music; he's athletic; he can captain a cruise liner; he's a master of disguiseÖ the list goes on and on! And let's not forget that he can stop a Moon Tiara Action in flight, teleport in a number of interesting ways (my favorite has to be the vacuum/black hole technique), create illusions, make fire and lightning, animate inanimate objects, and telekinetically turn airplanes against humans. Cool.

Sixth:  his voice.  Out of the kings, his voice is my second favorite.  Onosaka Masaya, his seiyuu, is absolutely adorable, and is quite possibly the only reason why I personally haven't written Jadeite off completely.  In the DiC dub, I find his voice rather flat and irritating, 2-D villain-ish; I wasn't expecting to find him so much cuter in the original.  But that may be just me.

Seventh: he's one of the Shitennou. He's an evil cool guy out to get the Sailorsenshi. Isn't that enough?

I think so.  Jadeite's an okay dude.

 

To me, he looks about six years old here.

Leaving so soon? Aw, I didnít even get a chance to take your energy- I mean, meet you!

Really, that's what I meant!

 

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