Am I the only one in this fandom who hates the constant comparison between Mina and Usagi and how "they're like twins! So alike!" Like yes maybe superficially but actually unlike Usagi I feel Mina doesn't wear her heart on her sleeve and is muchhhh less honest about her emotions. She internalizes and represses and is afraid to look "weak" or be emotionally open while Usagi is just a big ball of open, honest emotions. Am I the only one who thinks this?
I both agree and disagree with you. On a surface level, Minako and Usagi ARE the incredibly similar, mischievious, nightmare, blonde, whirlwind twins and I LOVE that and I LOVE how they can play into each other like that. On the other hand, Minako and Usagi are also SO, SO DIFFERENT, and a lot of times it’s very easy to overwrite those differences BECAUSE of how similar they appear to be. Both characters suffer from that, but I feel Minako “37 Hidden Motives Behind a Barbie Mask” Aino suffers significantly more.
Like you said, Minako sure as hell doesn’t wear her heart on her sleeve, even her closest friends are usually kept away from her deeper feelings. Minako is also more self-centered, doing her best at all times to focus the spotlight on her people (and preferably herself by association) even if it comes at the expense of randos she doesn’t know. (Usagi, in contrast, looks at said rando and MAKES them one of her people). And of course, when you get right down to it, Minako just has a million more things going on in her head than Usagi does: preparing for imminent battle, considering enemy’s strengths, contemplating battle strategies, figuring how she can cut the lunch line to grab the last roast beef sandwich.
It’s because Minako is all of these things that she seems so very much like Usagi. Wanna keep your fears and doubts secret from thos dearest to you? Play dumb. Want to control everyone’s attention? Be obnoxious. Want to be three steps ahead of your enemy and have them severly underestimate you and your abilities? Be a young, dumb, obnoxious, teenage girl. The Blonde Disaster Mask is so multi-purpose and so faultless that it is the most ingenious Minako creation to exist.
But here’s the most important part: Minako so flawlessly executes the Blonde Disaster disguise because she is, in fact, a Blonde Disaster.
Minako could go with any number of mechanisms to get similar effects, but she goes with ditzy blonde because it is a) so readily at hand and b) actually who Minako is. Minako loves playing pranks, and mindlessly flipping through magazines, and storming through 80 different stores to find one specific pair of shoes, and flirting with anything that’s cute, and doing hair, and gossiping, and ALL OF IT. Minako knows she and all her friends could very well die at any moment, she brings an entirely new meaning to “carpe diem” and she is going to go mach 50 doing the things she loves and living her life because she’s so aware that she might not have much of it left to live. She doesn’t stop being the fully-competent leader of the senshi just because she likes painting her toes while singing karaoke, rather being a senshi helps her appreciate painting her toes while singing karaoke even more.
So Minako IS a sort of twin for Usagi, because day-to-day, in the moment, they are both two blonde, teenage girls living their teenage girl life. And they can do those teenage girl things they love together, and it’s so much better BECAUSE they have each other. They can bounce their energy off of each other and reach levels never possible before, and just plain, old have FUN together. If that isn’t beautiful and precious and IMPORTANT than I don’t know what is.
In summary, it’s a shame that people might write these two off as being copies of each other, because they really, really aren’t. But, those similarities are just as great and as important as their differences.