The two latest episodes of Sailor Moon R are now available on Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we have episodes 79 and 80, where bullying is a recurring theme that both Artemis and Ami have to deal with.
Episode 79, Artemis’s Adventure: the Monster Animal Kingdom, is an Artemis episode. Hey we haven’t done one of those yet, so why not? I can’t actually think of any earlier episode which so heavily centred on a male character, a rare enough event for Sailor Moon. Artemis is being mistreated by pretty much everyone. He gets a bit annoyed with Minako, he get stepped on by Usagi and then her and Luna laugh at him. He’s had enough! He runs off and falls upon an adorable box of kittens, which leads him to discover the latest Black Moon Clan plot to hypnotize animals in order to attack people. Artemis wants to show he can do things on his own and faces off against the Droid Dogma and her legion of animals. This does not go well, as we see that Artemis as a cat is not actually capable of saving the day without super powers. Luna shows up to help, but gets attacked herself. Artemis does his best to defend her long enough to allow Sailor Venus to show up and save him. Ultimately no one learns anything as Artemis is later hurt, this time by Chibiusa’s bag, and everyone mocks him. There isn’t really a good story to learn here about bullying, but the next episode will do a bit better.
Episode 80, The Terrifying Illusion: Ami All Alone, has the students of Ami’s class accusing her of cheating. She does well on tests, as she usually does, but a student finds a cheat sheet and the class seems to turn on her. Something seems up though, as the classmates are darker skinned than usual, a somewhat racist sign of their being controlled by the enemy. The Droid Giwak uses illusions to convince Sailor Mercury that she’s being targeted not only by her classmates but also by her friends. This shows a very real kind of harassment which can occur amongst teenagers that is a real problem. Lucky for Sailor Mercury it’s just a monster causing this and she can just fight her way out of the problem. Real kids being bullied like this by their peers don’t always have super powers to save the day. An important lesson can be shown here as kids watching would known that such behaviour can seriously hurt a person and should not be tolerated. Meanwhile Esmeraude takes a thorough bath. Seems a bit too much like fan service to me.
Support the site by buying the first season of Sailor Moon on DVD and Blu-Ray using the links below.