T.1.2 / S.1.5 / K.1.3
(I don’t expect anyone to list all three page numbers, but I figured since I can easily see the three on the vocabulary sheet, I’d try including all three.)
I remember the first time I saw an in-color manga drawing of Usagi’s mother. I thought, “Why’s her hair brown?” I guess the real question is for the anime: “Why did they make her hair blue?”
Although it’s not mentioned yet, Usagi’s mother’s name is 育子. 子 is a common ending-sound on girl names. Anyone who’s worked their way through level 11 on WaniKani will recognize the kanji text 育 as meaning “nurture”, and is used when refering to things like raising a child.
This kind of word play comes up all over the place in Sailormoon. 月のうさぎ means “rabbit of the moon”, but if we replace that の with the kanji 野, you get 月野, which resembles a surname: 月野うさぎ. Adding in that Usagi is Sailormoon (hopefully I don’t have to mark that one as a spoiler!), and her long hair in twintails resembles long rabbit ears, it all ties in together.
Ikuko uses the word おてがら. The more I learn kanji, the more I wish it were used! (Just so long as I get furigana.) With kanji, this word is お手柄. WaniKani doesn’t teach this word, but 手 (hand) is level 2, and 柄 (pattern) is level 42 (ah, I won’t see that one for a while!) Checking in a Japanese dictionary (I think Weblio is what came up when I did a search on the word), 手柄 means 「目覚ましい働き」 or “remarkable work/achievement”, as well as 「腕前を発揮した成果」 or “accomplishment that shows skill”. I suppose if you think of a pattern made by hand, it would be an accomplishment that took skill. (Thanks for reminding me that I’m not good at handicrafts, Naoko Takeuchi. No wonder you left the kanji out.)
By the end of this first page, I have to admit, I’m surprised at how little kanji there is. It does make sense, though, as Sailormoon appeared in the phonebook-sized monthly manga publication Nakayoshi, which targets elementary school-aged girls.
Edit: I missed some kanji in the numbers in the next paragraph. They have been updated. I’ll update again if I find I’ve missed any more.
Looking over the kanji, excluding the newspaper on the first page, there are about 312 kanji in Act 1, from about 175 unique kanji. Anyone who’s reached WaniKani level 9 will recognize half of the kanji used in Act 1, and by level 10 will recognize half of the unique kanji. By the end of level 15, you’ll be able to recognize over 75% of the total kanji in Act 1. The most common kanji is 見, which appears 9 times.
Intersting tidbit: You’ll notice Usagi’s hair buns look wider and flatter that usual in the bottom panel of this page. This was her original hairstyle. When the series was republished in tankoubon form, Naoko Takeuchi did a lot of clean-up artwork (especially on scenes with Luna), and one of the clean-ups was to make Usagi’s hair look more like in the anime adaptation.
Here’s an display of the changes in Usagi’s hair buns (from the next page):