The two latest episodes of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars were added to Hulu and Neon Alley this morning. This week we get episodes 168 and 169, which takes us half way through this 6 episode mini arc which starts off the season. Sailor Saturn finally returns and then the town is enthralled with mirrors for mysterious reasons.
Episode 168, Saturn Awakens: the Ten Sailor Guardians Unite, gives us more Sailor Saturn than we’d previously seen in the entire series! We had only seen here briefly at the end of Sailor Moon S before she was turned into a baby. She has been growing at an astonishing rate and seems to be developing the language skills to go with it. Judging by what is happening with Usagi and Mamoru it doesn’t look like much time has passed at all since the last episode, so there’s really no implication that Hotaru could have possibly learned all of these things at a normal rate. She is speaking easily, referring to her three parents as Haruka Papa, Michiru Mama and Setsuna Mama. At night Hotaru is visited by the ghost of Sailor Saturn who gives her the memories she had lost. This insinuates that her functional memories returned as she aged but her specific memories of her life are unlocked all at once from her alter ego. She remembers many things including her relationship with Chibiusa. How sweet! It would be a shame if Chibiusa would leave and never return in a few episodes. Another thing she sees is a memory of Sailor Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, who are now her parents, trying to kill her. She doesn’t struggle with this at all. She also has no bad feeling when seeing her loving father who is still very much alive and was recently separated from her. So Hotaru transforms into Sailor Saturn. We need a monster so this week we still have these Nehelenia glass monsters. Sailor Moon powers up into Eternal Sailor Moon and uses an attack which resembles, but is not named, Starlight Honeymoon Therapy Kiss. This is done with her new weapon the Eternal Tiare. This doesn’t last long.
Episode 169, The Cursed Mirror: Mamoru Caught in a Nightmare, is all about teenagers being addicted to looking at themselves in the mirror! Replace the mirrors with cell phones and you’d have a scathing commentary on 2015 society! This one reminds me a bit of episode 5, Scent of a Monster: Chanela Will Steal Your Love, where students were infatuated with these Chanela pets. This time a lot of people, including Mamoru, are almost hypnotized by mirrors. The girls first notice this in their school but then Usagi notices this at Mamoru’s place. When she goes to see him she sees a suspicious boy looking for him. This is the one and only anime appearance by Ittou Asanuma, who we’ve seen in the manga and Sailor Moon Crystal. Inside Mamoru can’t stop starring at mirrors and he even buys a ton of them. Since we need an action beat we once again face off again the Nehelenia mirror monsters! Not compelling at all! It turns out Nehelenia is the one in the mirror and she manages to somehow pull Mamoru into it! To be continued…
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At long last the final season of Sailor Moon, Sailor Stars, will be released in the United States of America. This season, released in Japan way back in 1996 was never dubbed into English and was never released on video in English speaking North America. Hulu and Neon Alley have been releasing the original Sailor Moon anime series subtitled at a rate of two episodes per week and we will finally be getting the fifth and final season on Monday December 14th. It was not clear whether or not we would see the episode on the 14th or 21st, as the current schedule would have the final episode of Sailor Moon SuperS, episode 166, playing on that day. Viz has a precedent of only including the final episode of the season on one day so as to not break up the season. We now have official confirmation, from the Neon Alley schedule for the month of December, that episode 167 will indeed be released on Monday December 14th. The schedule does note that the “Start of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars” is on the following Monday, with episode 168, which is actually the second episode of Sailor Stars. There is still the possibility that someone has made the mistake with this schedule and that episode 167 will be held off until the 21st but at this time the schedule does indicate that episode 167 will be December 14th.
Fans who have not seen Sailor Stars before will be excited to see Eternal Sailor Moon, the return of Sailor Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and Saturn as well as the Sailor Starlights and many more. It will still be a while until they all show up though as the first 6 episodes of the series are sort of like a follow up to Sailor Moon SuperS, giving us more closure on Queen Nehelenia. Sailor Uranus, Neptune and Pluto will show up right away as Sailor Saturn is also brought back into the fold. This conveniently brings the story back in line with how the Dream arc of the original Sailor Moon manga left off with the whole group together. Sadly Chibiusa and Tuxedo Mask won’t be around for long, so enjoy them while you can.
What new character are you most excited to see? Sailor Iron Mouse? Princess Kakyuu? Sailor Chibi Chibi? So many to chose from!
2015-12-06 Update: The original article title and content stated that this was the first release of Sailor Stars in North America. While Sailor Stars was never released in the US and Canada, it was released in Mexico which is part of North America. I often use the term North American when referring to the series because I am a Canadian so in many cases specifying United States of America is not the whole story. In this case however, Hulu is still not available to Canadian Sailor Moon fans and so the series is really only being officially released in the United States. Canadians may use a proxy to watch Hulu, as I have been doing, but this isn’t an official release. The original French dub of Sailor Moon also did not included Sailor Stars and only a small part of what was seen in France was ever broadcast on Canadian television. Sailor Stars will likely remains unreleased officially in Canada until either some streaming option can be made available or until the home video release for Stars makes its way here.
Thanks to reader Julian for the note about Mexico.
The latest Petit Chara figures have been announced on the Sailor Moon official site and this Sailor Stars set will include Eternal Sailor Moon, Sailor Chibi Chibi and the Sailor Starlights. This set will be released in late September. You can pre-order them from Premium Bandai.
Petit Chara figures are non poseable super deformed figures. This season of Sailor Moon was never released in North America, though many fans are likely still familiar with the story through fan subs and the manga. Eternal Sailor Moon is simply the powered up form of Sailor Moon for this season. Sailor Chibi Chibi is a mysterious girl of unknown origin, whos actual identity varies depending on what continuity we’re talking about. The Sailor Starlights are Sailor Star Fighter, Sailor Star Maker and Sailor Star Healer, Sailor Guardians from another solar system who traveled to Earth in search of their princess.
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This retro game style shirt featuring four of Sailor Moon’s items is available today at ShirtPunch. Like with all shirt a day sites this shirt will only be available for 24 hours today, January 29th, for $10. This shirt shows pixelated versions of Sailor Chibi Moon’s Crystal Carillon which she uses as an attack item in Sailor Moon SuperS, as well as three of Sailor Moon’s transformation brooches, the Crisis Moon Compact used to transform into Super Sailor Moon in Sailor Moon SuperS, the Cosmic Heart Compact from Sailor Moon S and the Eternal Moon Article used to transform into Eternal Sailor Moon in Sailor Stars.