Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 Limited Edition Blu-Ray review

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 Blu-Ray - Contents

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 was released on Blu-Ray and DVD a couple of months ago, on June 18th. Fans who haven’t already picked it up can get from stores locally or from online retailers such as Amazon. Since it’s been out a while I’ve had the time to watch the entire set and so I wanted to give some general impressions about it. Though the video quality of these releases has generally not been great, this series looks better than sets in the past have. The new English dub is pretty good, as it has been for the rest of the series, and the script remains mostly unchanged.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Seiya

Viz Blu-Ray

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 173 - Seiya Kou

Japanese DVD

First let’s look at the video. The quality certainly does not compare with that of the Japanese Blu-Ray sets which have been released more recently, but it’s fairly good. To be sure this won’t look like a newer anime series such as Sailor Moon Crystal does on Blu-Ray. This Blu-Ray was mastered from older standard definition video which was put through software to upscale it to high definition. What that gives is something that I wouldn’t really say looks any better than the Japanese DVD releases which came out well over a decade ago. That said I’m not sure that comparison really matters. We’ve never gotten Sailor Stars in North America before. The subbed version was out on Hulu a few years ago but there was no dub and that release used similar source material as this. When it comes to comparisons, we don’t have an old North American release to compare it to. This release certainly looks better than nothing, which is the baseline!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Professor Tomoe and Baby Hotaru

Viz Blu-Ray

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 167 - Professor Tomoe and Hotaru

Japanese DVD

In this post I have provided comparisons to the Japanese DVD release. Since the Japanese Blu-Ray releases have not gotten to Sailor Stars yet I don’t have that for comparison. It’s pretty difficult to conclusively say if one is better than the other. The Viz Blu-Ray is certainly HD, in that it is 1080p, but that HD image lacks detail that would be there if it had been mastered from a film source. Anime of the time was drawn on cels and shot onto a film intermediate which was then transferred to video before broadcast. We have been told that this higher quality film version of Sailor Moon is lost. It is fairly evident from close examination of screenshots, or even upon viewing the video itself, that this is an upscaled version of standard definition video. There has also been some amount of post processing done in order to clean up the image. This means the colours will look more solid and have less noise on them, but potentially at the cost of detail, but is it detail that matters? Sailor Moon, like most traditional animation, is largely chunks of solid colour separated by solid black lines. The filters used seem to be optimized to this, giving a consistent colour and clear lines. Had this been a live action series with actors with pores and hair as well as other textured things, a different type of upscaling filter would likely have been used. While we shouldn’t necessarily mourn the loss of some grain there is a loss of detail in the backgrounds which aren’t as much just solid colours as we can see from the example of the cherry blossom tree behind Professor Tomoe in the above pictured image. Had we gone back to the film source for these, something which we’ve been told is impossible, then the image would likely look much better. If you check out my review of the Japanese Blu-Ray sets and look at the samples of the Make Up! Sailor Guardians on Blu-Ray you’ll see what that could have looked like.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Young Queen Nehelenia

Viz Blu-Ray

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 172 - Young Nehelenia

Japanese DVD

With earlier releases by Viz we had more ghosting, which means a double image or shadow near some lines, as well as some interlacing artifacts. I didn’t notice any such problems in this set. No doubt the quality has improved likely due to the fact that these episodes were made four years after the first season so the quality of the masters available get a little better with each year. This is likely also why the ADV releases of Sailor Moon seasons 1 and R were the worst while the Pioneer releases of Sailor Moon S and SuperS looked much better. Don’t take my word for it though! Check out the many comparison images here and later in the post to judge for yourself. There’s no objectively correct answer to how much post processing looks best, sometimes it’s just a matter of personal preference. While there has been some change in quality with these screenshots due to jpg compression it should give a good idea of what each looks like.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Mamoru sees something on the wing

Viz Blu-Ray

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 173 - Mamoru sees something on the wing

Japanese DVD

Moving on from the video quality to the content. This is the first time we’re getting an English dub of Sailor Stars which is quite a treat. For years people considered this season to be impossible to market to the North American public, though I never really understood why. Is it really all that scandalous to have men who transform into women and vice versa? Sure, the Sailor Starlights’ outfits are fairly revealing but as far as anime goes this isn’t terribly shocking. It’s a joy to finally hear Sailor Stars in English. This is a cast we’ve heard for the past four seasons and three films as well as for Sailor Moon Crystal so even though it’s a departure from the DiC/Cloverway dub of most of our youth, for me there was still enough familiarity with the cast that it feels like Sailor Moon. The new actors for the Sailor Starlights do a great job. Having women play them as both men and women works well. This was the same approach which was used for the Japanese dub many years ago. The alternatives, either having two actors per character or having men do the voices would likely not have worked as well. For those who don’t appreciate the English version they also have the option of listening in Japanese with English subtitles.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Sailor Saturn

Viz Blu-Ray

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 172 - Sailor Saturn

Japanese DVD

The episodes included are the first half of Sailor Stars. This includes the amazing six episode Nehelenia arc in which she is given a very different ending as she got in Sailor Moon SuperS. The rest of the episodes are about Usagi getting to know The Three Lights, more specifically Seiya, as she grows further and further out of touch with Mamoru who is away and somehow completely out of touch. This parallels the Sailor Starlights who have appeared and who fight Sailor Galaxia’s Sailor Animamates. My feelings on Sailor Stars have changed over the years. I originally found Seiya sort of annoying as he was just a distraction from Usagi’s true relationship which she never waivers from. This is generally true but I find the story much more appealing. She is hurting and though there is no infidelity he fills a need she has for companionship. His interests in her are not reciprocated which is more tragic than anything. I’ve given more thoughts on all of the episodes in my individual reviews which you can find by searching the episode numbers in the search field on the site if you are interested. So much to say it is a very good half season and I’m glad that everyone can see it now, assuming some fans haven’t already seen it some other way!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Special features

There aren’t a ton of special features included. Each disc has an Art Gallery which doesn’t seem to be Japanese concept art but more likely something by Italian artist Marco Albiero who does a remarkable job of duplicating the original anime style. For whatever reason the Blu-Ray viewing software I use to take screenshots couldn’t load the Art Galleries so you can take my word for that.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Interview with Lauren post, the voice of Nehelenia

Also included are three voice actor interviews. The first is with Laura Post, the voice of Nehelenia. Having also been in SuperS it’s a bit odd to see this interview here but she mostly talks about her appearance in those first 6 episodes which fits.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Interview with Stephanie Sheh, the voice of Usagi

Next we have an interview with Stephanie Sheh, the voice of Usagi. This is the longer of the interviews. She does the whole thing with her dog! A few things stood out to me. First she mentions that the season was pretty long. This is objectively untrue as Sailor Stars is the shortest Sailor Moon season with only 34 episodes. One can hardly blame her for thinking this though as Usagi and Sailor Moon dominate this season like no other. It would be difficult to count but it seems likely that Usagi had more lines in Sailor Stars than any other seasons except perhaps the first one. There was much less focus on other Sailor Guardians. Chibiusa who dominated SuperS is gone, along with her father, for most of the season. Stephanie Sheh also makes a joke that it was lucky that Usagi didn’t have a cell phone because if Mamoru didn’t respond to a few texts this would be a sign of trouble. More generally she is lucky that this occurred at the dawn of the Internet age where it would be believable that Usagi would not have access to e-mail or chat software. I consider myself an early adopter of the Internet and I had no Internet access at home while Sailor Stars was airing. Ami is shown to communicate with some people through the Internet, but she is clearly an outlier amongst her friends. She also mentions that she ships Usagi and Mamoru and thinks her relationship with Seiya is inappropriate. This is probably best as such a view reflects her character’s! There’s also a funny bit where she wonders what’s up with the Starlights, asking similar questions that many fans have like if they’re men who turn into women, women who turn into men, women dressing as men or what? All around I found the interview very humourous. It’s obvious that Stephanie Sheh has spent a lot of time with the Sailor Moon character throughout the years and has many thoughts about the series.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Interview with Stephanie Sheh, the voice of Chibi Chibi

Finally we have “A Chibi Interview with Stephanie Sheh”, the voice of Chibi Chibi. It’s a short interview where she talks about that character. She mentions being happy to play Chibi Chibi and points out that in the Japanese version the voice of Usagi played Chibi Chibi as well, but it wasn’t clear why. This is funny because in the manga there is a clear connection between the characters which doesn’t actually exist in the anime. It might make more sense for Chibi Chibi to share voice actors with another character, but I’ll avoid the specifics for now. Fans who are familiar with the end of the series will understand why.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - The non super credit less opening

Beyond the interviews we have a “Clean Opening” and “Clean Ending” which basically means the intro and ending without Japanese credits overlayed. These are of a very poor quality! The Japanese releases humourously refer to these as being “Non Super” meaning they aren’t HD. While they are technically HD in that they are encoded on the disk as 1080p, they are clearly taken from something of roughly the same quality as a VHS tape. A nice extra to have though one we’ve seen on every Japanese release ever.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 Blu-Ray - Blu-Ray opened

As for the packaging this set continues to look quite nice, as have other released to date. This is all new art, whereas the Japanese releases have continued to reuse the original laserdisc box art for decades. The special booklet that is included with the Limited Edition is quite nice, including episode summaries and art of a number of characters. I believe all of this art is once again done by Italian artist Marco Albiero. The booklet also includes a relationship chart which has been the source of some controversy which I posted about closer to it’s release as well as an ad which refers to the first three seasons of Sailor Moon Crystal as the entire series.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 Blu-Ray - Booklet - Final message

Since this booklet is meant to cover the entire series it has cast information and summaries for the entire season. It also includes a nice goodbye message to the fans which I will quote below.

To all the longtime fans and those who joined us during this journey: This previously unreleased season is here because of you. Your support makes the stars twinkle brighter and we couldn’t have done this without you!

Starlight Honeymoon… THERAPY KISS!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Viz Blu-Ray - Eternal Sailor Moon

All considered I think this set it worth getting. The video quality is not the best possible but it is quite good. While the Japanese Blu-Ray which is coming in November will probably look marginally better, it won’t even have English subtitles, let alone English audio, so it’s of little use to most fans. If you’re only looking to watch the Japanese series with subtitles you can of course always stream these episodes, but buying this set or digital downloads of the episodes is the only way to get Viz’s English dub. I look forward to seeing part two of Sailor Stars and rewatching the final episodes. For those of you who are interested in this set but have not gotten it yet, you can support the site but buying it using the Amazon links below.

Keep reading for more images of the box art and comparisons of the video quality between this Blu-Ray and the Japanese DVD release.

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars will be released on Japanese Blu-Ray starting in November

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Japanese Blu-Ray - Volume 1

Great news for Sailor Moon fans who are really picky about video quality and don’t like having money! The final season of the original Sailor Moon anime, Sailor Moon Sailor Stars, will be released on Blu-Ray in Japan with volume 1 coming November 13th and volume 2 coming January 8th 2020. This follows decent but expensive releases for the first four seasons of the original Sailor Moon anime. While the quality of these has generally been better than what was released by Viz, these are still HD upscaled versions of standard definition source material. By this I mean to say that TOEI did not go back to the film source to get these HD versions but has done post processing on the same masters used for their DVD releases many years ago.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Japanese Blu-Ray - Volume 2

The cost of these is certainly not cheap! MSRP for each volume is 14,800 yen, about $136 US. You can already pre-order the standard or vendor exclusive versions of volume 1 from Amazon Japan. Having just watched the first Sailor Stars set released by Viz and been fairly happy with the video quality it gets harder and harder to justify getting these sets, which only include Japanese audio and no subtitles! Certainly the video quality of the earlier seasons is the worst of the Viz releases and every season the sets look a little better. It’s easy to assume this is due to Viz doing a better job, which is certainly part of what’s going on, but I also think it’s just a matter of the masters for the series looking better for the later seasons. The ADV DVD releases of Sailor Moon’s first season and Sailor Moon R were horrendous but the Pioneer DVD releases of Sailor Moon S and SuperS were much better looking for the same reasons.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Laserdisc - Volume 1 - Eternal Sailor Moon

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Laserdisc - Volume 6

The art which we’ve seen looks quite good. As with previous releases this is box art which was originally used for the initial VHS and laserdisc releases. This art is done by Katsumi Tamegai who was an animation director for many episodes throughout the Sailor Moon series, including the final episode. This art was also used for the Japanese DVD release. Volume 1 has an image of Eternal Sailor Moon on the outside and Usagi with Chibi Chibi on the inside, though she’ll only show up for the last two episodes of the set. I’ve included images of the laserdiscs for reference throughout this post.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Laserdisc - Volumes 3, 4 and 5 - The Sailor Starlights and the Three Lights

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Laserdisc - Volume 9

The outer cover for volume 2 is an amalgamation of three different laserdisc covers showing each of the Sailor Starlights and their civilian Three Lights counterparts. The inside shows Princess Serenity and a less evil Galaxia which I suppose is a bit of a spoiler!

Included in volume 1 are episodes 167 to 183 while volume 2 will have episodes 184 to 200. This is the same breakdown Viz used with their release as it splits the season evenly with 17 episodes per set. The special features are much like what we’ve gotten with other releases. This includes low quality (non super) creditless versions of the opening and ending credits and 15 second commercials for each episode. A booklet with episode descriptions will also be included.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Japanese Blu-Ray - Vendor exclusives

As always we have vendor exclusives for a number of retailers. You can see them shown in the image above. It isn’t always obvious what these are! Members of the official Sailor Moon fan club who order the set through the club will get A4 sized sticker sheets with each volume as well as a laserdisc jacket sized poster for buying both volumes. We don’t know what images those will include at this time. A4 size is roughly equivalent to a standard 8.5×11″ letter piece of paper. A laserdisc jacket is roughly the size of a vinyl record jacket.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Japanese Blu-Ray - Amazon exclusive box

The Amazon exclusive which is available to customers buying both volumes is a box to house both sets which has art similar to the laserdisc box which housed all of Sailor Stars.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Laserdisc - Box

The Animate exclusive, which is available only to those ordering both volumes, is a set of three acrylic key rings. Each features an image of one of the Sailor Starlights with their Three Lights alter ego from the box art.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Laserdisc - Box back

The Seven Net exclusive for volume 1 is an acrylic plate, which I believe is what is sometimes called a pencil board, showing an image of Eternal Sailor Moon and the Sailor Guardians. The exclusive for volume 2 is a B2 sized tapestry featuring an image of Sailor Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and Saturn which was originally on the back of the Sailor Stars laserdisc box. B2 size is about 20″x28″.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Laserdisc - Volume 2 - Sailor Chibi Moon and Sailor Saturn

Finally the Neo Wing exclusives are a separate A2 sized cloth poster which comes with each volume. These are images of the first two laserdisc covers, that being Eternal Sailor Moon for volume 1 and Sailor Saturn and Sailor Chibi Moon for volume 2. A2 size is about 16.5″x22″.

Have any of you been buying these sets?

The English voices from Sailor Moon Sailor Stars have been announced

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Dub Voice Actors

Earlier this week Viz Media announced the new English dub cast for their dub of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars which will be coming to home video on June 18th. Though I’m used to calling this Viz’s “new” English dub this is the first time the final season is being dubbed in English and so these characters have not had English voices before! The voice cast includes Stephanie Sheh as Chibi Chibi, Sailor Chibi Chibi, Melissa Hutchison as Seiya Kou, Sailor Star Fighter, Erika Harlacher as Taiki Kou, Sailor Star Maker, Sarah Williams as Yaten You, Sailor Star Hearler, and Carrie Keranen as Sailor Galaxia.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 187 - Sailor Chibi Chibi Moon

Fans will probably notice that Stephanie Sheh is also the voice of Usagi Tsukino, Sailor Moon, in Viz’s dub. Her being cast as Chibi Chibi follows with the Japanese casting where Kotono Mitsuishi, the Japanese voice of Sailor Moon, also played Chibi Chibi. Why is this casting important? In the manga it certainly makes sense for Chibi Chibi to have the same voice as Sailor Moon! Her true identity turns out to be a future version of Sailor Moon so they should share a voice. In the anime however that identity is not kept and aside from the visual resemblance, due to the characters resembling each other in the manga, they are not the same person or even related in any way. The end of the anime was written before the manga was completed and the casting was likely done before the identity of the character was known or decided. So much to say it isn’t really necessary to have Chibi Chibi voiced by Sailor Moon’s voice actor.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 173 - The Sailor Starlights

The rest of the voice actors have experience in other anime. The three Sailor Starlights are voiced by women, as was the case in the Japanese version. These characters are men while they are in the civilian disguises as The Three Lights and transform into women when they are Sailor Guardians, their genuine selves. In the manga it’s insinuated these are simply disguises but in the anime they actually transform their bodies. Melissa Hutchison who plays Seiya, the more prominent of the Sailor Starlights, is best known for playing Clementine in the Walking Dead video games. Erika Harlacher who plays Taiki has voiced many anime characters including Kurapika in Hunter x Hunter. Sarah Williams who plays Yaten has voiced many video game and anime characters including Sayaka Miki in Madoka Magica and Jinx in League of Legends. Carrie Keranen who plays Sailor Galaxia has previously voiced a number of single episode character in Sailor Moon including Kazuko Tadashita, one of the animator from episode 21, Saeko Yamamoto and Blizzar, the skier and monster from episode 38, Utonberino, a cardian
from Sailor Moon R episode 55, Amanju, a cardian who was chosen by Ail in Sailor Moon R episode 57, Avogadora, the Droid in Dark Fruit in Sailor Moon R episode 66, as well as the Xenian Flower from the Sailor Moon R movie.

Sailor Galaxia

Source: @VIZMedia on Twitter

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 is now available to pre-order on DVD and Blu-Ray from Amazon

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Blu-Ray set box art

Following last week’s news about Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 coming to DVD and Blu-Ray on June 18th fans can now pre-order the set from Amazon. This includes the less expensive DVD version, selling for just $28.26, as well as the standard Blu-Ray version, which is selling for $61.12 and the Limited Edition Blu-Ray which is $71.73. This is slightly less expensive than pre-ordering from RightStuf, which currently costs $71.99, though users ordering from RightStuf will be able to get the exclusive coin. If you pre-order from Amazon using the links below, or any other Amazon links such as the ones on the left sidebar on the main page, this will support this site.

This set includes episodes 167 to 183. This includes the short six episode Nehelenia arc, which is a sort of bridge between the SuperS season and Sailor Stars, and the introduction of the Sailor Starlights and their alternate identities, the Three Lights! The set will end with the introduction of the mysterious Chibi Chibi! These will be available for the first time with English audio, featuring Viz’s new English dub of the series, as well as Japanese audio with English subtitles. We never got a straight answer as to why Sailor Stars wasn’t originally dubbed but some fans believe that it was because the content would have been considered inappropriate for some viewers. If that was ever true it seems like this is no longer the case!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 173 - The Sailor Starlights

Do you ship Seiya and Usagi? Will you be getting this release? I’m certainly looking forward to watching it in English for the first time. Though I’ve imported the Japanese DVDs and laserdiscs of Sailor Stars over the years the copies I’ve watched the most were VHS fan subs and a bootleg DVD, both of which used the VKLL subtitle scripts.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 182 - Chibi Chibi

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 174 - Taiki, Seiya and Yaten - The Three Lights

The Sailor Moon Le Mouvement Final musical poster, story, cast and schedule have been released

Sailor Moon Le Mouvement Final banner

A ton of information about the Sailor Moon Le Mouvement Final musical has been released! The musical will start in September and run in three different cities in Japan, those being Tokyo, Aichi and Osaka. As expected this musical will cover the Stars arc of the manga, which has the Sailor Guardians joining forces with the Sailor Starlights to fight Sailor Galaxia.

Sailor Moon Le Mouvement Final banner

Check out the new cast members! Note that I don’t speak Japanese so for some of these I couldn’t get a good English version of the name so I just included the Japanese text. I’ll update those when I get some better into.

Harukawa Meiku - Sailor Star Fighter

Seiya Kou, Sailor Star Fighter, will be played by Meiku Harukawa.

Riona Tatemichi as Rubeus

Taiki Kou, Sailor Star Maker, will be played by Riona Tatemichi. Riona previously played Rubeus in the Petite Étrangère musical.

Saki Matsuda Sailor Star Healer

Yaten Kou, Sailor Star Healer, will be played by Saki Matsuda.

Princess Kakyuu

Princess Kakyuu will be played by 岡村麻未.

Coco Isuzu Sailor Galaxia

Sailor Galaxia will be played by Coco Isuzu (Twitter, Instagram).

Aoki Shion - Sailor Iron Mouse

Sailor Iron Mouse will be played by Aoki Shion.

Sailor Tin Nyanko

Sailor Tin Nyanko will be played by 橋垣美佑.

Sailor Aluminum Siren will be played by 小林由佳.

Juri Hirayu - Sailor Lead Crow

Sailor Lead Crow will be played by Juri Hirayu (Twitter, Instagram).

Hirani Yamaguchi as Chibi Chibi

There will be two actresses playing Chibi Chibi. Hinari Yamaguchi and 新津ちせ.

There will also be some dancers playing additional villains. These are 椎原夕加里, 肥田野好美, 匂坂あゆ美 and Ayano Nagasawa. A number of them played villains in past musicals.

Performances in Tokyo will be from September 8th to the 18th. Performances in Aichi will be September 23rd and 24th. Performances in Osaka will be held from September 29th to October 1st.

Will any of you be attending this round of musicals?

The final episode of Sailor Moon is now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 200 - Galaxia fights Princess Serenity

This is it! Episode 200 of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars is now available on Hulu and Neon Alley. This is the last episode of the series, making the entire 200 episode run of the original Sailor Moon anime available to watch in Japanese with English subtitles for free… if you live in the right country. There’s no telling how long these episodes will remain available to free Hulu users as older episodes of some shows will often be available only to those with paid Hulu Plus subscriptions. This episode is rated TV-MA, no doubt because of the lengthy nude scene which isn’t terribly high on detail. I first watched the second half of this episode before seeing any of Sailor Stars at my local anime club. It was unsubtitled and I really didn’t know what was going on, but thanks to VKLL I later saw the rest of the series and figured out what was what.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 200 - Sailor Moon

Episode 200, Usagi’s Love: The Moonlight Illuminates the Galaxy, wraps everything up quite well. Chibi Chibi became a light and then turns into a Star Seed and then into a sword. A bit crazy but the idea is basically that Chibi Chibi is the light of hope, which is not at all what she is in the manga. She is Galaxia’s Star Seed, ejected out of her when Chaos began to take over her body. How does a Star Seed continue to have autonomy outside of the host? The Silver Crystal never seemed to have a mind of its own, but Chibi Chibi is sort of like the good half of Galaxia, removing itself from the body which is evil. Usagi transforms into Princess Serenity with wings, which is a very cool form I’ve always appreciated. Princess Serenity, ever kind and forgiving, does not want to use the sword to attack Galaxia. This is messed up! Galaxia’s Star Seed is begging Usagi to kill Galaxia and she’s refusing. Can you imagine if a part of you left your body and gained some sort of agency and then tried to kill you? Galaxia is like Devon Sawa in Idle Hands! Galaxia lost her Star Seed and now it’s time for Sailor Moon to lose her clothes. This is where the TV-MA rating comes in. Usagi starts flying around totally naked. What are they going to do, cancel the show? This is the last episode! There’s a bit of sparring and finally the light of the Silver Crystal reaches good girl Galaxia who is somewhere inside evil Galaxia. The good Galaxia inside evil Galaxia’s brain takes Sailor Moon’s hand just as real Galaxia does and poof, she’s healed! We assume at this point that Galaxia’s true Star Seed is somehow reincorporated into Galaxia, merging their memories. Does Chibi Chibi die? Does the Silver Crystal let Galaxia be good without a Star Seed while Chibi Chibi still exists, as she’s seen flying around later? Speaking of Star Seeds, all those Star Seeds Galaxia gathered are released like Pokémon let back into the wild. This is good news for all of Usagi’s up to now dead friends, including Mamoru who returns as Endymion because that is his coolest form. Chibiusa? Not around. Makes me wonder why Galaxia didn’t go to the future to get her and Diana’s Star Seeds. Perhaps she should have captured a bunch of Sailor Guardians and bred in a sort of Star Seed farm to keep making more!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 200 - Galaxia and Sailor Moon

Everyone’s alive and it’s time for the Sailor Starlights to head back home. Seiya says his farewells to Usagi who is still ignorant of how he really feels about her. Luna shows some serious lust for Yaten, which doesn’t make Artemis very happy. We then see Hotaru and Setsuna, happily chilling with their murderers Haruka and Michiru. I guess that was all part of the plan? Hotaru must be getting used to those two trying to kill her at this point. Usagi and Mamoru share a moment alone in front of the moon, exchange pleasantries and kiss. With a series full of constant interruptions to their romance, they are at last at peace and can be together. In an homage to the famous quote from the first season, Usagi states that she’s 16 years old and a bit of a klutz and a crybaby, but that she’s actually a Guardian of love and justice, Sailor Moon. When Usagi used to say these words it was more like “Oh isn’t this weird but I’m a superhero” but here her tone is totally different. It’s like she’s saying “I look unsuspecting and I’m a bit emotional, but I’m a badass superhero and I’ve got this shit covered.”. What a perfect line to bookend the series and demonstrate just how much she’s grown not just in power but as a character who uses love and kindness over her sheer power. These final end credits are accompanied by the original opening theme, Moonlight Densetsu, which was not used elsewhere in the season, as well as a lovely montage of images.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 200 - Mamoru and Usagi

The end.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 200 - The End

For those who’ve seen the series before, I hope you enjoyed revisiting it. For those who are seeing it for the first time, I hope you loved it. The manga is its own thing in many ways, so check that out if you haven’t. Hopefully Sailor Moon Crystal makes it all the way to the end and we can see a totally different ending to the series and a very different origin for Chibi Chibi.

Support this site by buying the first two seasons of Sailor Moon on DVD and Blu-Ray using the links below.

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episodes 198 and 199 are now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 198 - Galaxia

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars is almost complete! This week we get episodes 198 and 199 on Hulu and Neon Alley which leaves us with only one episode left for next week. As we left things Sailor Uranus and Neptune were evil for some reason and we’re slowly building up to the final confrontation between Galaxia and Sailor Moon. Episode 199 comes with a warning on Hulu stating “The following is intended for mature audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.”. Why? There’s a ton of nudity in episode 200 which we will see next week but nothing about this particular episode some any more “mature” than the last few. I guess there’s so much nudity in episode 200 that the warning spills over into other episodes!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 198 - Sailor Uranus slaps Sailor Moon

Episode 198, Dying Stars: Uranus and Neptune’s Last Stand, starts off with these two being evil. They kind of killed their good friends Sailor Saturn and Pluto last time which was not cool at all. Sailor Uranus attacks Sailor Moon with World Shaking, which good old Sailor Star Fighter attempts to block with Star Serious laser. This causes a sort of uncounscious semi dead Usagi who wakes up in a world of pastels where everyone is nice. All her friends are there and Haruka and Michiru are cool again. They were just faking it and we can all be friends again. Oh and guess what it’s Mamoru and Chibiusa. Remember them? They used to be in this show before the Three Lights showed up. Cool dream! All fake. Anyway Sailor Uranus and Neptune are still evil and when they’re just about to take the Sailor Starlights’ Star Seeds they … turn on Galaxia. So it really was a trick. Works decently too only when Galaxia is shot with those little spikey light things that look like something from a ramen bowl her Star Seed doesn’t come out. It’s like she doesn’t have one. We’ll find out why soon enough. Galaxia take her bracelets back and, as she’s already taken these two’s Star Seeds, they die. How sad.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 198 - Sailor Uranus and Neptune

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 199 - Sailor Galaxia seals Chaos

Episode 199, The Light of Hope: the Final Battle for the Galaxy, begins the confrontation with Galaxia. We start with a little background! Choas, this great evil thing in the universe, was sealed within the most powerful Sailor Guardian … Sailor Galaxia. Oh damn. Seemed like a good idea at the time I guess but it sort of made her evil and now she’s totally destroying the Universe and collecting Star Seeds. Sailor Moon, always looking for a solution that centers around love and friendship and such, wonders if there wasn’t a better way in which everyone worked together and did great things. We can finally have some sympathy for this seemingly terrible person. Evil Sailor Galaxia of course is totally happy with the arrangement since she likes being evil and collecting Star Seeds. There’s a bit of a chase and Sailor Moon tries to heal Galaxia which seems to work just a bit, but Galaxia shakes it off and destroys Sailor Moon’s Eternal Tiare weapon. Sailor Galaxia tries to kill the Sailor Starlights but Sailor Moon jumps in with her Star Seed in front of her. This seems like a good plan. What could go wrong? Oh no Sailor Galaxia took the Star Seed! Sailor Moon does that pink ribbon thing she is known to do. More backstory. As Chaos took over Galaxia’s body she removed her Star Seed and sent it away where Chaos couldn’t find her. The Light of Hope is Galaxia’s Star Seed. Sailor Chibi Chibi Moon cries and irradiates a light which Sailor Galaxia recognises as the Light of Hope. So… Chibi Chibi has the Light of Hope or is the Light of Hope?

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 199 - Sailor Galaxia's Star Seed

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episodes 194 and 195 are now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 194 - Seiya and Usagi

The two latest episode of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars have been added to Hulu and Neon Alley. This week with episodes 194 and 195 we learn a lot more about Sailor Galaxia as we get pretty much all of the anime’s time with Princess Kakyuu. It’s a bad week for Seiya’s relationships as Usagi starts to come to terms with Mamoru’s absence. Also to note there are no more monsters of the week for the rest of the series. The last Phage was in episode 192!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 194 - Sailor Galaxia

Episode 194, Crusade for the Galaxy: Legend of the Sailor Wars, gives us a ton of back story. Princess Kakyuu is here and she seems to be the one with all the answers, and is willing to give us just a few of them. We get a description of the Sailor Wars. Some great Sailor Guardian sealed Chaos inside herself and became totally evil. That’s Sailor Galaxia. She’s treating Star Seeds like Pokémon and she won’t stop until she’s caught ‘em all. Usagi is missing Mamoru quite a bit and calls him and … his answering machine picks up. Did Mamoru keep his massive apartment in downtown Tokyo while he went to study in the United States where a physical answering machine is located or has he just left his phone line with voice mail set up? Did he pay for all of this with his part time job at the resort he showed up for once a year ago? Who exactly is continuing to pay these bills while he’s not even available to return phone calls and mail to his girlfriend? Seiya meanwhile gets a busy signal while calling Usagi who is trying to call her boyfriend. Oh boy, that’s a symbolic busy signal! Seiya then mistakes Kakyuu for Usagi. Tell me about it. There are a bunch of jokes about keeping Usagi safe in this episode. Fair enough! She’s the princess and that’s kind of what these people need to be doing. Sailor Tin Nyanko shows up at the school, masquerading as student Nyanko Suzu. Once again no monster as Sailor Tin Nyanko attacks Usagi, who tries to take her on alone. The fight is interrupted by a red rose which is tossed into the fray. Wow! WTF? Chills. The rose was tossed by… Seiya. Damn. A fight ensues and Sailor Moon half heals Sailor Tin Nyanko with Silver Moon Crystal Power Kiss. We’ll see how that goes later. Usagi breaks down crying at this point with the rose reminding her of Mamoru. Seiya asks if he’s not good enough for her. It’s not looking great for Seiya.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 194 - Seiya's rose

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 195 - Sailor Tin Nyanko is confused

Episode 195, Princess Kakyu Perishes: Advent of Galaxia, is sort of a double spoiler title. It’s just doubly terrible. Anyway. The Three Lights are doing one last concert! Why? They found their Princess! Well now they are looking for the Light of Hope, which apparently is the thing that can stop Galaxia. Why just do one concert to call the Light of Hope? Either they’re done and don’t need to sing anymore or they aren’t and it should just be status quo. Whatever. It’s their last concert. More importantly, Mamoru is totally off the grid. Usagi admits to Rei that he hasn’t actually responded to any of her letters. When Ami looks into it he never arrived in America. He’s not in his old apartment, which still has an active phone line and perhaps an answering machine, so where is he? How is he paying his bills? So Mamoru is not in US but we saw him and the plane with that light and the … oh boy let’s think about something else. So concert. Sailor Tin Nyanko attacks the concert and she’s totally messed up. She was half healed with the Silver Moon Crystal Power Kiss “attack” last episode so she’s sort of like Two Face only without the coin. This is sort of tragic. The Animamates aren’t evil at all. They are being controlled. Sailor Moon has the power to heal them but has failed to do so at every attempt. Tragic. Lots of other people are at the fight like Sailor Uranus and Neptune. Oh wait of course no Sailor Saturn. Whatever. Galaxia shows up and she’s collecting all the Star Seeds. She takes Sailor Tin Nyanko and then Princess Kakyuu tries to hold her off while the Starlights escape. Princess Kakyuu has her Star Seed taken. Wow that was kind of quick. I kind of thought maybe she’d transform into a Sailor Guardian and maybe have some kind of fireball attack but she doesn’t really do much. Oh well moving on. As Kakyuu is dying Sailor Chibi Chibi Moon takes her hand and with her last breath says that Princess Kakyuu feels the Light of Hope. Whatever that is! I guess this means Princess Kakyuu isn’t Chibi Chibi like I thought!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 195 - Princess Kakyuu and Sailor Chibi Chibi Moon

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 194 - Usagi listening to Mamoru's answering machine

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episodes 192 and 193 are now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 192 - Minako loves Artemis

This week’s new episodes of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars on Hulu and Neon Alley are all about Yaten threatening people! First he gets upset at Minako for trying to do the thing he’s doing and then he tries to steal an incense burner from innocent little Chibi Chibi! It’s also all about fetish costumes as Minako auditions to be an idol in all form of ridiculous costume and then the gang dress up as maids for a sort of school run Maid Café. This week also features the double whammy of two piece swimsuits and Usagi holding a child in her arms.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 192 - Yaten threatens Minako

Episode 192, Go for Your Dream: Minako Becomes an Idol, continues Minako’s quest to become an idol. Didn’t we already see this episode? Episode 114 is kind of exactly this as Minako faced off against Mimete to become an idol. Minako made it to the final five in the episode before losing. Usagi herself tried to be an idol in episode 7 as well. In the live action series Minako is an idol all along, but in the anime she has to work for it! This is a popular topic in Japan. Frankly I was a bit baffled by these kinds of episodes back in the 90s, as such a thing was not that common here. I’d seen shows like Star Search but in this pre American Idol world it seemed to be a bigger thing in Japan. These days there is no shortage of shows which are pretty close to what is depicted here, somewhat of a mix between American Idol and a beauty pageant. While stars for such shows are often picked with their physical appearance in mind, this is less overtly stated as a requirement than it might be in Japan. What’s more the circus in Japan seems to just be amped up to 11, with competitors showing up with rabbit ears, tuxedos, school uniforms and other costumes that are indistinguishable from cosplay. Yaten is real upset at Minako for trying to be an idol. Yaten, an idol himself and member of what is surely the most popular boy band in Japan, thinks being an idol is incompatible with Minako’s duties as a Sailor Guardian. I wonder if throughout this episode Yaten, when coming face to face with Artemis, has noticed that he has a crescent moon in his forehead that looks just like the one Luna has. Artemis doesn’t seem to be very jealous of Yaten either, which is odd considering both loves of his life, Minako and Luna, have shown overt signs of being attracted to him. Oh well Artemis and Luna are great at hiding their emotions. They never even talk about their daughter who went back to the future between episodes with no fanfare. The competition of course includes a swimsuit portion. This must be good news to some readers, though sadly Minako only sports a one piece suit. Some other competitors wear bikinis though. Minako performs Route Venus at the competition. Though this song first appears in Sailor Moon SuperS it is a Sailor Moon R character song for Sailor Venus and is performed by Minako’s voice actress Rica Fukami. The target this week is Takuya Moroboshi who is like the Japanese Simon Cowell. He turns into Sailor Musician who is totally ridiculous looking, like most Phages. During the fight Usagi asks Luna to watch Chibi Chibi. I always find this funny as Usagi did it to Chibiusa in Sailor Moon R as well. Minako ultimately wins the competition, but decides not to pursue it at this time. I guess hypocritical Yaten got through to her! She seems to think she can become an idol at any time because she forgets that she lives in Japan and that her chances of success diminish with each passing year.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 192 - Sailor Musician

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 193 - Minako dressed as a French maid

Episode 193, The Stolen Silver Crystal: Princess Kakyu Appears, is all about a Maid café though I’m not sure it was called that at the time. A little poking around tells me the first Maid Café dates back to 2001 but this episode aired in November 1996. Regardless of the specifics, this a restaurant where the girls dress up as French maids to serve their customers. It’s nice to see these school girls replace the highly fetishized Japanese school uniform with a French maid outfit. Seiya takes a page from 80s romantic comedies as he appears outside of Usagi’s balcony to chat with her. Usagi is there with Chibi Chibi who is dressed a rabbit. Could Chibi Chibi’s rabbit outfit be a clue to her actual identity? No. The rabbit outfit is in no way related to her identity in the anime. At this point on my first viewing I still thought she was Princess Kakyuu which we’re about to learn is not the case. Chibi Chibi got that incense burner a few episodes ago which is surrounded with butterflies and smells like Princess Kakyuu. This causes jerk faces Taiki and Yaten to try to get it from her. This is pretty sketchy, seeing large teenage boys threatening a little kid to fork over something. Naturally this causes Makoto and the rest of the girls to come to her defense. The target this week is … Sailor Moon! Sailor Lead Crow does something right for a change and targets someone who actually has a True Star Seed. She threatens to destroy the school with a black hole, as if a school which endorsed a fetish café was worth saving, and this seems to work on Usagi who submits to those bracelet things. Her Star Seed is the Silver Crystal and when it is retrieved Sailor Moon turns into Usagi. Let’s tease this apart for a moment. A normal person, when deprived on their Star Seed, becomes a Phage who is Sailor something which has to do with their interest. When Sailor Moon loses her Star Seed her Phage is Usagi dressed as a maid, which happens to be what she was wearing before. Is Sailor Moon’s Phage Usagi? So Lead Crow is sucked into the black hole, because these things are dangerous, and so are Usagi and Chibi Chibi but that’s okay because Princess Kakyuu shows up and it seems like she’s the one to destroy the black hole somehow. Wow it’s great this big climactic thing we were waiting for finally happened. I can’t wait to see what Princess Kakyuu does!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 193 - Princess Kakyuu

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 192 - Minako's drawer

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episodes 190 and 191 are now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 191 - Usagi is Shinji

This week on Hulu and Neon Alley‘s new episodes of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars things get really emo! Seiya got hurt last week and we spend two episodes fixating on that and being all Shinji about it. Also a ton of video game references and inspiration from the Sailor V comic.

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 190 - Seiya sings for Usagi

Episode 190, Truth Revealed: The Star Lights’ Past, is all about how to scam a free concert. No actually it’s mostly about silly drama. Seiya got hurt helping Usagi and now the Three Lights don’t like the Sailor Guardians and then Sailor Uranus, Neptune and Pluto get into the mix. They confront Sailor Star Healer and Maker, and everyone seems to agree that it’s best for everyone to be hostile for no terribly good reason. Forced drama! So where the hell is Hotaru? I mean she still hasn’t had a transformation sequence and we never get to see her when her friends show up. She’s probably in bed at home alone without a babysitter. She should have stayed with her father. This anime doesn’t seem to like Sailor Saturn at all. Anyway it’s all about trying to cheer up Usagi while still keeping her away from Seiya which is ultimately what is making her miserable. Drama, drama, drama. Finally Seiya breaks his silience and asks Usagi to come to a live performance he’s doing, with two other guys who are intent on keeping her away. Too bad it’s sold out! But this doesn’t stop Usagi who for once can’t just use her contacts to see a free concert. She goes to the top of a Ferris Wheel to watch the concert from there! This reminds me of the Sailor V comic which has Amano, the Sailor V version of Umino, uses some sort of radio receiver to scam free music from a concert. For a comic and show that frequently features musical artists, they sure do like to teach us how to scam music! Seiya is able to see Usagi in that far off ferris wheel, and so it’s like he’s singing for her. This gives us cool backstory for the Sailor Starlights. We see their planet getting destroyed and them following their Princess to Earth. Seiya passes out from his injuries. The target this week is the amusement park manager who turns into Sailor Amusement. The bad guys are so bad at their job! Guess who shows up to fight?! Not Sailor Saturn!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 190 - The Sailor Starlights planet is destroyed

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 191 - Cosplay Codename: Sailor V Volume 2 - Minako as a game character

Episode 191, Butterflies of Light: A New Chapter On the Horizon, continues with last episode’s Usagi/Seiya drama. Chibi Chibi is chasing a red butterfly which coalesces with others to form an incense burner. Full confession. At this point in the series, upon my first viewing in the 90s, I was convinced that Chibi Chibi was Princess Kakyuu. The Three Lights know that these butterflies indicate that their Princess is around. Back to the drama Usagi is crying on her bed while listening to her walkman. Total Shinji moment. Terrible. Chibi Chibi has a slipper that says Chibi^2. Witty! There’s a video game event and Taiki is going to be present! The gang go out in costume. Ami is dressed in a toga that somewhat resembles Palutena from the Kid Icarus games. Why is this relevant? In Kid Icarus Uprising for the 3DS and the Super Smash Bros. games the voice of Palutena is provided by Aya Hisakawa, the voice of Sailor Mercury. Of course she was cast in this role some 15 years after this episode aired, so the resemblance can’t be more than a coincidence. A lot of little video game references follow. A trophy thing that looks like Mario, fighting games that looks like Street Fighther and Virtual Fighter. Even a t-shirt referencing Sailor Moon musical actress Anza Ohyama. Cosplayers dressed as all kinds of characters like Chun-Li and Felicia. I have no idea what Rei, Makoto and Minako are supposed to be dressed as but they seem to be somewhat generic video game characters. Maybe from fighting games. Minako’s costume somewhat resembles that of a game character she dressed as in Volume 2 of the Sailor V comic, Minako in Game Center Crown. Similarly Ami’s rival in the final round, Yukihide Ohbayashi, looks just like Taku from that same issue. It should have been Minako to fight him if this parallel was to continue but for whatever reason Ami episodes are as common as Taiki episodes this season. The target this week is idol Reiko Kanagawa who turns into Sailor Gamer. How many of our readers would turn into Sailor Gamer? Probably a few!

Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 191 - Yukihide Ohbayashi who looks like Taku Codename: Sailor V Volume 2 - Taku
Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 191 - Ami dressed as Palutena Palutena from Super Smash Bros. Wii U and 3DS

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Sailor Moon Sailor Stars episode 190 - Princess Kakyuu

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