Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18, Invasion – Sailor Venus, Review

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Venus Rolling Heart Vibration

The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal was released on Saturday March 21st on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. This week we have Act 18, Invasion – Sailor Venus, which as the title suggests focuses on Sailor Venus as she faces off against Calaveras, the final remaining Ayakashi Sister.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Rubeus kisses Calaveras

Things are getting pretty bad at this point! Sailor Mercury, Mars and Jupiter have all been kidnapped in standard character order so we focus on Minako, Sailor Venus this week! The Ayakashi Sisters have mostly been killed as well leaving only Calaveras. In her first scene we get a hint at a relationship between Rubeus and herself as he kisses her on the neck. She’s obviously upset over the death of her sisters as she summons their ghosts, doing channeling which is kind of her shtick. I’ve gotten a lot of feedback from readers who don’t like my criticism of pseudoscience in my reviews. Indeed I’m not about to discount the magic and time travel aspects of the show but when the characters present pseudoscientific beliefs such as this week’s channelling as being true, I feel I must point out that such things are not legit. This is especially true this season as there is an obvious recurring theme with the Black Moon Clan reveling in pseudoscience which some believe to be true, as opposed to the general fantastic nature of the show which is obviously science fiction.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - The Ayakashi Sisters' ghosts

Calaveras does a public channeling of Rubeus, showing the future, but does she even need to do this? We see that she does actually have channelling powers but the people of Tokyo don’t really know this. She claims to have knowledge of the future because of this but that’s simply because she is from the future. Much like Koan’s ability to see the future could have been made up, so could have Calaveras. But the point of the show is not that the enemy is pretending to have great powers. They happen to actually have some and convince the world as such, while still relying on subterfuge.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Momoko and Ikuko Tsukino

Chibiusa’s friend Momoko is introduced this week. Her hair colour in the original anime was first brown and later purple. Here we see her with bright red almost pink hair. Though the manga is mostly black and white Momoko is shown to have bright red hair when presented in colour making this her correct hair colour. The rest of her image is a bit odd. She is given a thin waist and breasts, which is not fitting with a character that is meant to be Chibiusa’s class mate.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Umino with a DVD

Naru and Umino appear in this act. While the original manga had a “video” mentioned it was not actually shown. It is assumed this was a VHS tape or less likely a laser disk as DVD did not exist in the early 90s. A DVD is seen once again in Sailor Moon Crystal, updating the technology of the show for 2015 standards but still not embracing Blu-Ray for whatever reason. Naru reveals that she knows that something is up with Usagi and her friends, hinting that she either suspects she is Sailor Moon or is otherwise involved. It’s nice to see this friendship continue despite Usagi spending so much time with her more super powered friends and her new boyfriend.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Windows operating system

When watching the DVD we get a look at the computers at the school. These are clearly Windows PC type computers. In the past in the series it was all macs, with the tablets having what appeared to be a mix between iOS, Apple’s handheld OS, and Mac OS, the full fledge OS for Mac desktops and laptops. This does not have any of the Apple look to it. The desktop folders look like Windows folders, the S shaped icon is similar to the Internet Explorer E. There are icons matching the My Computer, My Network Places and Recycle Bin icons. The Media Player app showing the video looks like Windows Media Player, complete with the menu options, controls and window borders. The only thing which is out of place is the Opera icon on the task bar. Who uses Opera anymore? Just like with the DVDs the Opera web browser is something that is still around but certainly obsolete by anyone who cares about technology!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - The Shitennou as ghosts

The Shitennou finally reappear in this episode! Fans of the original Anime would expect them to be confined to the first season but like with the manga Sailor Moon Crystal is not done with them. Mamoru still has the stones that represent the four Shitennou and he uses them to channel their ghosts, similar to the way Calaveras does with her sisters. He consults them about what’s going on as they are once again shown to be sympathetic heroes, loyal to Mamoru, not the villains they were when working for the Dark Kingdom.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Moon Tiara Boomerang

Sailor Venus uses her Rolling Heart Vibration attack in this episode. In the manga she used this against Tuxedo Mask but in Sailor Moon Crystal this is the first time she uses it. Sailor Moon also uses her Moon Tiara Boomerang attack again. This did not occur in the manga. Artemis also gets some action this week as he is seen taking out a cameraman!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber

Tuxedo Mask is the one to get a new power in this episode as he gets his first attack Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber. As he does this he shoots a kind of energy from his hands. Why not smoke? The term smoking here does not refer to actual smoke. It’s a reference “smoking”, the French term for Tuxedo. As a French Canadian this term is not one I would use but I was exposed to it reading the French translations of the Sailor Moon manga which was my first exposure to the books. One thing to note about Tuxedo Mask in this episode is that he is no longer wearing his hat. If the manga is any indication he will not be bringing his hat to the future and so we won’t be seeing it again in the series. Tuxedo Mask in the original anime wore his hat consistently when in costume but in the Manga he wears it less and eventually stops wearing it altogether.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 18 - Chibiusa steals Usagi's transformation broach the Crystal Star

Chibiusa is a bit of a brat in this one. She steals Sailor Moon’s transformation item, the Crystal Star, because she wants the Silver Crystal. Usagi is mad at her naturally but when Chibiusa is in danger she is quick to defend her. This is a perfect illustration of Usagi and Chibiusa’s relationship. They get on each other’s nerves and are usually at odds with each other but when it really counts they do care for each other. Chibiusa returns Usagi’s broach, allowing her to transform. She then mentions that she took it because she want to take it to the future to save her mother. She mentions that she knows that a Silver Crystal out of it’s time period will not work but she still needs to try. Why does she think this? Clearly the Silver Crystal of the future works in the past or there would be no Sailor Chibi Moon! But that’s a story for another day.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 19 - Sailor Pluto

Next time on April 4th is Act 19, Time Warp – Sailor Pluto. Indeed, we will be seeing Sailor Pluto for the first time! We will have the team heading to 30th century Crystal Tokyo in the hopes of helping out Chibiusa’s mother.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 19 - Time Warp - Sailor Pluto

Chibiusa’s shirt gate continues! In the next episode preview we see Chibiusa in both her blue uniform, which she brought from the future, and her white uniform, which she gets in the past. The scene with the white uniform looks like some of the flashbacks we’ve seen. Chibiusa didn’t have her white uniform back in 30th century Crystal Tokyo so what is going on here? This doesn’t necessarily need to be a problem. The blue uniform could be a flashback to Chibiusa arriving and the white could be what she’s wearing when she arrives in the 30th century as it’s the uniform she wears to the future in the manga, and what she is wearing at the end of act 18.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 19 - Chibiusa in the future with a white outfit

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 19 - Chibiusa falling - Blue uniform

Keep reading for more images from this episode and the next episode preview.

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Watch Sailor Moon R episodes 87 and 88 on Hulu

Sailor Moon R episode 87 -

The two final real episodes of Sailor Moon R are now available on Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we wrap up the story of the Black Moon Clan, Chibiusa and Crystal Tokyo with episodes 87 and 88. There is in fact one more episode left in Sailor Moon R but next week episode 89 is just a clip show which is a complete waste of time. The important thing is that you can now watch the whole Sailor Moon R season on Hulu.

Sailor Moon R episode 87 -

Episode 87, Believing in Love and the Future: Usagi’s Decision, wraps up the Black Moon Clan’s story. First we get a rare look at Naru. Remember her? She’s still around! Though she doesn’t give any specifics it seems from what she says in this episode that she has an idea that Usagi is Sailor Moon or at least somehow involved in the various crazy things that are happening to her city. The gang transform and Sailor Moon faces off against Prince Demande who proceeds to use his mind control to try to rape kiss her. This is pretty much completely terrible but he quickly redeems himself when Wise Man tries to kill Sailor Moon and he takes the lethal blow for her, seemingly killing Wise Man as well. As Demande dies in Sailor Moon’s arms she promises to free the rest of the people of Nemesis. I wonder if Neo Queen Serenity followed through with this promise when all was done. Does she actually remember having promised this or did that occur in a new timeline 30th century Neo Queen Serenity has no memory of? You would think a Neo Queen Serenity with full knowledge of what happened in present day Tokyo could have simply prevented all of this from happening in the first place, but I don’t think time travel works that way in this show. Well Wise Man isn’t actually dead as he puts himself back together in a flash! Ready to fight in the final battle in the next episode!

Sailor Moon R episode 87 - Demande sacrificing himself for Sailor Moon

Sailor Moon R episode 88 - Princess Chibiusa

Episode 88, The Final Battle Between Light and Dark: Pledge of Love for the Future, is the final real episode of Sailor Moon R. First we have to deal with the Black Lady situation. The cure for this is love, as the Silver Crystal is used on her to give her positive memories bringing her back to reality and her normal young self. The family is back together but Wise Man is still making trouble. That’s okay because we have the Silver Crystal and… what’s that? A second Silver Crystal? Chibiusa finally remembers what happened. She took the Silver Crystal which disappeared inside her body and now she’s able to use it to get a cool princess dress and fight Wise Man! This is where she would be turning into Sailor Chibi Moon in the manga but they don’t do that at this point in the anime. Wise Man is easily defeated. What follows the next day is a tearful farewell between Chibiusa and her friends. Usagi and Chibiusa cry while holding each other at which point Chibiusa calls Usagi mamma and departs to the future. Back in the 30th century everything is fine. I guess the sun finally came back up! Peace is restored as is Neo Queen Serenity. What does a proud mother have to say to her young daughter who traveled through time to fight evil and literally save the world in two timelines? “Welcome home.”

Sailor Moon R episode 88 - Usagi and Chibiusa

Episode 88 features the song “La Soldier” during the fight with Wise Man. This is the main song from the Sailor Moon Musicals. I wondered why I couldn’t find it on any anime soundtrack for years until I realized it was simply on Musical soundtracks.

This wraps up Sailor Moon R! Chibiusa sure did seem like a brat at first but given all she’s been through it’s hard not to have some sympathy and respect for what she endured and accomplished. We won’t be seeing her for a while. In the manga she came back nearly as soon as she left, cementing herself as a permanent character in the show. This is not the case in the anime as she will be gone for some time and won’t actually be staying until the end. Chibiusa haters think she dominates the story too much but in reality her appearance in the anime is much less than what it is in the manga. She does not have a considerable role in anything but Sailor Moon SuperS from now on, but this is a while away.

Sailor Moon R episode 88 - Future Crystal Tokyo restored

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Watch Sailor Moon R episodes 83 and 84 on Hulu

Sailor Moon R episode 83 - Sailor Mars, Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask learn that Chibiusa is Usagi and Mamoru's daughter

The two latest episodes of Sailor Moon R have been added to Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we have episodes 83 and 84 which take place entirely in 30th century Crystal Tokyo! It takes a long time for the story to finally make it to the future but here we are. A lot of stuff that we mostly already figured gets revealed.

Sailor Moon R episode 83 - King Endymion

Episode 83, The Shocking Future: Demande’s Dark Ambition, introduces us to a world we have previously only seen in dreams and flashbacks. All of the girls assumed it couldn’t really be that bad when they saw this destroyed city in Chibiusa’s mind but this was obviously spot on. Things are very bad. The gang runs into a familiar face, the holographic projection of King Endymion who is the future version of Mamoru. His voice, which sounds nearly identical to Mamoru’s, sounds familiar! Does Toru Furuya as King Endymion sound that much different than Toru Furuya as Mamoru? Anyway, his voice is the one from the dreams that foretold a great calamity if Mamoru didn’t dump Usagi. Just what was the reason for this silly fabricated friction between characters which didn’t really last? Oh he just wanted to test their relationship to make sure it was strong. Sorry but I just don’t see the logic of this and there is no indication that it helped at all. It didn’t change the future, so it seems like it was meant to strengthen their relationship in the past so that… Tuxedo Mask didn’t let Prince Demande kiss Usagi? Well I’m getting ahead with myself. We learn all of the things we kind of already knew. Usagi is Neo Queen Serenity, oh wow! Chibiusa is Usagi and Mamoru’s daughter. Who knew? This surprises everyone and even makes Rei a little mad. Maybe Rei would be the queen of Crystal Tokyo if Usagi hadn’t stolen her boyfriend last season! In a somewhat rushed end of the episode Usagi is kidnapped by Prince Demande who dresses her up a bit like Neo Queen Serenity and tries to use his hypnotic powers to kiss her without consent. It’s a very uncomfortable scene that deals with a pretty serious issue, but Tuxedo Mask comes in to save the day.

Sailor Moon R episode 84 - Esmeraude the dragon

Episode 84, Wiseman’s Evil Hand: Chibi-Usa Disappears, has Chibiusa running off while the gang deals with Esmeraude. Esmeraude has been doing a pretty crappy job as villain but it’s okay, she can do more good as a dragon! This way she doesn’t need to be directly killed by the Sailor Guardians. Instead a dragon is killed who they didn’t really know was her. Prince Demande who was trying to sexually assault Usagi in the last episode seems only somewhat put off by Esmeraude’s death, tragically not returning her affections. Meanwhile Chibiusa is traumatized and runs off … to the park. In the past (our present) when Chibiusa runs away she always finds herself in the park. It’s not really clear why this is. But Chibiusa is not in some foreign city. She’s simply in another time. The park may be very familiar to her as it may be the same place she always run to, just from another time. Many landmarks from the future park seem to indicate that it is indeed the same once we often see in the past. Wiseman proceeds to mess with her memory of things. She remembers looking at the Silver Crystal, but not what happened to it. Her views of her family and friends is corrupted to make her think they are all against her. In the final moments of the episode we hear a laugh which sounds somewhat like that of Chibiusa but a bit different. We will see who this is in the next episode.

Sailor Moon R episode 84 - Chibiusa in the park in 30th Century Crystal Tokyo

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Sailor Moon R episode 84 - Wiseman and Chibiusa

Jennifer Cihi to appear at Anime Zakka in downtown Boston Friday February 20th

Jennifer Cihi

Jennifer Cihi, a singer who performed a number of songs for the original English dub of the Sailor Moon anime, will be making an appearance at Anime Zakka, a comic book shop in downtown Boston, on February 20th. Details posted on the Sailor Moon News Facebook Page mention that this free event will be an opportunity to listen to Sailor Moon songs, get an autograph, chat and more.

Anime Zakka has two locations in Boston. This event will be taking place at the location at 350 Newbury Street on Friday February 20th from 5 to 7pm.

Jennifer Cihi, often credited as being the singing voice of Sailor Moon, appears in a number of songs played throughout the series as well as on the three soundtracks which have been released. Her name is credited as Sailor Moon, Princess Serena and Sailor Mars as she has done the vocals for “I Wanna Be A Star!”, “My Only Love”, “Carry On”, “It’s A New Day”, “Call My Name”, “The Power of Love”, “I Want Someone to Love”, “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “Who Do You Think You Are?”.

These CDs are out of print. You can buy them from resellers on Amazon using the links below. Many songs are also available on iTunes.

Tracey Moore, the first English voice of Sailor Moon, to appear at Tsukino-con in Victoria February 13th to the 15th

Tracey Moore - The Voice of Sailor Moon

Tracey Moore, the original English voice of Sailor Moon, will be appearing at Tsukino-Con this weekend, February 13th to the 15th, at the University of Victoria in Victoria British Columbia. Though she was not the voice of Sailor Moon for very long, she was the first to have the role. Tracey Moore provided the voice of Sailor Moon for the first 11 dubbed episode as well as two others, Dangerous Dollies and Jupiter Comes Thundering In. During this short time she not only provided the voice of Sailor Moon but also acted as the voice director for the series. Roland Parliament, the voice of Melvin and author of Sailor Moon Reflections, filled in as voice director once she left. Tracey Moore also voiced one of the Doom and Gloom Girls, the monsters who killed the Sailor Scouts at the end of the first season.

The DD Girls aka The Doom and Gloom Girls

Also appearing at the convention is Kyle Hebert who recently voiced the Priest and Rainbow Crystal carrier who turned into the monster Boxy in Viz’s English dub of Sailor Moon.

Kyle Hebert as the Priest and the voice of Boxy in Sailor Moon

Sailor Moon R episodes 77 and 78 are now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon R episode 77 - Usagi about to get killed on her wedding day

The two latest episodes of Sailor Moon R have been posted to Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we get episodes 77 and 78. Everything is on the table about Mamoru and Usagi’s relationship and then while everyone is sick nurse Minako tries to help them get better.

Sailor Moon R episode 77 - Mamoru and Usagi make up

Episode 77, Shared Feelings: Usagi and Mamoru in Love Once Again, somewhat but incompletely wraps up a pretty terrible storyline. As we have seen since the beginning of the Black Moon story arc, Mamoru is being haunted by dreams that show Usagi dying as a result of their being together. Though it’s never said how this could happen or why they should stay apart, Mamoru won’t take the risk and so he breaks up with Usagi. This logic on his part makes sense and is similar to that seen by other fictional series time and time again. What changes this week is that Usagi finally sees the same vision. The result of this is that she confronts Mamoru about the dream and makes the decision for both of them that it really doesn’t matter. This really does nothing to wrap up this story arc as we don’t actually learn where these visions are coming from. This will be learned in a later episode in an even less satisfying conclusion to this ridiculous story arc. The main story of the episode revolves around promise rings that aren’t really rings. They are bracelets that are exchanged between lovers. When I was a kid it was all about gimp bracelets. I guess this kind of bracelet made of string was big in the 90s in Japan. These days it’s all about those little elastics. Usagi and Chibiusa try to use these to get Mamoru to get over his love troubles. It doesn’t really work. The most important part of this episode however is not about Usagi and Mamoru’s relationship. It’s about Minako and Artemis’s relationship! When things get serious and Chibiusa is attacked by her “promise ring” all of the Sailor Guardians are called in. We see Minako receive the call on her communicator while wearing nothing more than a towel. She then, still in the towel, tells Artemis that it’s time to go as he is right in front of her. Scandal! Minako is completely comfortable letting Artemis see her get out of the shower or bath wearing nothing but a towel. Perhaps he was around for the shower as well!

Sailor Moon R episode 77 - Minako in a towel talking to Artemis

Sailor Moon R episode 78 - Nurse Chibiusa and Minako

Episode 78, Venus: Minako’s Nurse Mayhem, is a great comedy episode. Everyone is sick with the flu and while the people of Tokyo are walking around wearing face masks as they do when they are sick Minako is in great shape! She travels from home to home with Artemis and Chibiusa offering to help everyone try to get better! Hilarity ensues as she does a terrible job of doing so, serving food that is too salty or hot, messing with people’s stereos and generally not helping when she is trying to. In one scene we see Rei breathe fire for the second time in the series. She last had flames spew from her mouth when Usagi put hot sauce on her hamburger while they were watching the cherry blossoms in episode 51. Ultimately we learn that the flu is actually a plot by Esmeraude. Sailor Venus defeats her only to fall ill herself! In a perfect act of revenge Usagi shows up to help her get better.

Sailor Moon R episode 78 - Rei breathes fire

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Sailor Moon R episode 78 - Nurse Usagi

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14, Conclusion and Commencement – Petite Étrangère, Review

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Human Luna

The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal, Conclusion and Commencement – Petite Étrangère, was released on January 17th on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. This season finale of sorts wraps up the Dark Kingdom story arc and teases us about the upcoming second story arc with the appearance of the mysterious Chibiusa! Like many episodes this one was very faithful to the source material, with one major exception which I hope isn’t too much of a spoiler at this point as I’ve included it in the banner image.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Artemis

Some funny stuff to start out the episode. Sailor Moon is all about praying and remembering her allies! She goes through the whole lot! Luna, Ami, Rei, Makoto, Minako. Yep. That’s everyone, right? What is Artemis doing exactly? No respect. Meanwhile he’s doing a very good job of keeping Luna company on the Moon!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Luna praying

This episode is all about Luna. Sailor Moon saves the day? Luna saves the day! They both pray. They are both responsible for restoring the Moon to it’s original splendour and as a special surprise we get a brief glimpse at human Luna! As Metalia is defeated and Luna is praying on the Moon, Artemis gets a short look at her as a full on human. Luna somehow doesn’t notice her wearing clothes, not having fur, having hair, being taller, being in a totally different position, but whatever, it’s still very cool. Anime fans would recognize human Luna from the Sailor Moon S movie. This corresponds fairly faithfully to a manga side story Princess Kaguya’s Lover which centres on Luna and has her turning human. She and the rest of the cats, Artemis and Diana, spend time in their human forms later in the Dream arc of the manga which we may see if Sailor Moon Crystal gets renewed for a second season.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Human Luna

Following the fight with Metalia there is a bit of a goof as Sailor Moon picks the Moon Stick off of the ground. We see the Silver Crystal clearly in the Moon stick on the ground, then it’s gone when she picks it up, then in the next shot it’s visible again. I’m sure they’ll fix that up for the Blu-Ray release!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - The Silver Crystal is missing

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - The Silver Crystal reappeared

Great news! The palace on the Moon is restored! Everyone on Earth is dead, but hey Sailor Moon is the new Serenity so she can rule over her Kingdom! Of course that Kingdom isn’t much at this point. She would rule over what, two cats and a computer simulation of who I guess is now the Queen Mother of Silver Millennium? Not a great deal. Usagi decides she wants to live on Earth, which has roughly 7 billion people on it who are all dead but that is easily resolved thanks to the power of the Silver Crystal. I wonder if Usagi would have been able to instead resurrect the long dead inhabitants of the Moon instead of or in addition to fixing the Earth.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Queen Serenity, Usagi and Tuxedo Mask

Sailor Moon’s brooch was damaged in the fight with Queen Metalia. Too bad. But it’s okay! There are more toys to sell and so the Crystal Star Brooch makes an appearance! And on it is a small hole just big enough for the Silver Crystal. But the Silver Crystal is all big with that sort of lily flower thing around it. This big version of the Silver Crystal is not meant to fit in the Crystal Star! But lazy animation makes it work! We see Usagi take this huge Silver Crystal and with a simple finger she shrinks it and stuffs it in that hole. Pretty cheap and terrible looking!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - That won't fit

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Perfect fit

We have a new brooch. What does it do? Pretty much exactly what the old locket did. Sailor Moon transforms yet again however her transformation sequence is essentially identical to her original one. This is a bit of a disappointment. The only real change is that the new brooch replaces her old one in the clip. With her powers back she heals the people of Earth including her friends and all is good. Minako and Artemis has a nice tender moment as they’re reunited. I’m so shipping these two. The moment of peace is heartwarming.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Minako and Artemis

Rei has a glimpse of the new villain Rubeus. She prays that peace will remain. Sorry Rei! Your Shinto prayers are useless! If this episode has taught us anything it’s that the only way to get your prayers answered is to make them to the Moon! We’ll soon see that Rei’s prayers were indeed not answered as she’s first on the chopping block.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Rubeus

This peaceful normal live is rudely interrupted as Chibiusa show up! We had seen a lot of these clips in the trailer for the second story arc of Sailor Moon Crystal. Chibiusa kisses her future father and threatens Usagi asking for the Silver Crystal. Good call, as she actually has it.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Chibiusa kissing her future Dad

I really enjoyed this episode. A nice end to the first story arc and it was just really good to see some of these things animated. With this behind us, we now move on to the second story arc and what some are calling the second season of the show. As it’s still part of the first year of Sailor Moon Crystal I’ve decided to refer to it as the second phase or second story arc until such a time when a term gets officially adopted.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Chibiusa and Luna-P

The next episode, Act 15, Infiltration – Sailor Mars, will be released in three weeks on February 7th. A lot of stuff will be happening here. Chibiusa infiltrates the Tsukino family, we see the Black Moon Clan, new transformation items for the Sailor Guardians, the Cutie Moon Rod and much more!

sailor_moon_crystal_act_15_infiltration_sailor_mars

Keep reading to see more screenshots from this episode and the next episode preview.

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Sailor Moon R episodes 73 and 74 are now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon R episode 73 - Chibiusa steals Sailor Moon's Crystal Star Brooch

The two latest episodes of Sailor Moon are now available on Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we get episodes 73 and 74 which may be memorable to many fans from the 90s as the first new episodes of Sailor Moon seen in years. Following the show’s original run of 65 episodes in North America back in 1995 there was a lengthy hiatus before the second half of Sailor Moon R was finally released. The final 17 episodes of Sailor Moon R played on YTV here in Canada starting in September of 1997 and in the US starting in November of 1998, billed as “Lost Episodes” by Cartoon Network’s Toonami.

Sailor Moon R episode 73 - Puppet Tuxedo Mask

Episode 73, A UFO Appears: The Sailor Guardians Abducted, introduces us to Esmeraude who will be the new villain for the next chunk of episodes, but before we start out with her we need to warp up things with Rubeus! More importantly, Chibiusa now knows that Usagi is Sailor Moon and has seen that her transformation brooch, the Crystal Star, contains the Silver Crystal. Naturally, she steals it. Conflicted at first she uses cognitive dissonance to convince herself that Usagi is a bad person and that this is the right thing to do. She ends up visiting Mamoru who shows her the very awesome Tuxedo Mask puppet, reminding us that despite her somewhat evil actions this is really just a young frightened girl we’re dealing with. Since Usagi doesn’t have her brooch she can’t transform which in the end means that the rest of the Sailor Guardians get abducted by Rubeus’s UFO. Usagi is upset and tries to slap Chibiusa at this point, but Mamoru stops her.

Sailor Moon R episode 73 - Tuxedo Mask stops Usagi from slapping Chibiusa

À suivre! Right away. Having two episodes at a time sure is convenient for two parters like this!

Sailor Moon R episode 74 - Chibiusa parachuting

Episode 74, Defeat Rubeus: The Battle in Space, will be the end of a most hatable character! The Sailor Guardians have been kidnapped but it’s okay as Usagi finally has her brooch back. Rubeus wants the rabbit, known to viewers as Chibiusa, but giving up a (somewhat) innocent kid isn’t what Sailor Moon is all about. What are our heroes to do? Luna and Artemis have a plan! They’ll dress up like Chibiusa and try to trick Rubeus! On second thought that’s a terrible plan. Chibiusa proceeds to jump out of a window and turns herself in. Usagi follows, a big fight ensues and hooray the terrible Rubeus is defeated. But Sailor Moon is being pretty good at this point and not killing a ton of villains so for liability purposes they just kind of leave Rubeus on his spaceship which is blowing up. Esmeraude is more responsible for leaving him to die. Is this horrible? She doesn’t do it because he’s a terrible horrible man. She does it because she’s terrible and just wants him out of the picture. What a dragon! Spaceship explodes, let’s have some pancakes, have a nice day.

Sailor Moon R episode 74 - Luna and Artemis dressed as Chibiusa

Back in 1997 when these episodes first aired on YTV I was all about making a really terrible Sailor Moon site. I guess some things never changed! I like to think my Internet skills have improved since then. For historical purposes, check out The Sailor Moon Page of Funk!, my very old ad ridden Sailor Moon web site which features reviews of dub episodes 66 (episode 73) (cached version) and 67 (episode 74) (cached version) complete with my somewhat thorough list of all of the differences I spotted between the original Japanese version and the dub. The pages are full of broken links and images. The cached version on the Internet Archive has a few less ads and some of those images preserved.

The Sailor Moon Page of Funk!

Sailor Moon R episode 74 - Rubeus dying

Support the site by buying the first season of Sailor Moon on DVD and Blu-Ray. Isn’t this non intrusive Amazon ad better than the assault on your senses that is Angelfire?

Sailor Moon R episode 74 - Subtle religious imagery

Sailor Moon R episodes 69 and 70 are now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon R episode 69 - Usagi sees Mamoru with Unazuki

The two latest episodes of Sailor Moon R are now available on Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we get episodes 69 and 70, both of which deal with unhealthy relationships and how not to treat your partner!

Sailor Moon R episode 69 - Luna jumping on Mamoru's penis

Episode 69, Awaken the Sleeping Beauty: Mamoru’s Distress, gives us a better look at what’s been keeping Mamoru and Usagi apart. We once again see a flash forward to Usagi and Mamoru’s wedding but this time we see what has Mamoru concerned. It’s actually a prediction of doom! Dump her or she’ll die, basically. A tough situation. What’s a good guy to do? Sort of forced conflict which if there’s a good reason for it, makes a lot of sense, but we’ll learn later on just how stupid the reasons really are. So Mamoru knows just how to make Usagi know it’s over, that’s to make her think he’s with another girl! Enter Motoki’s younger sister Unazuki. When Usagi sees them on a bike together she is pissed, which sends her into an eating binge. This is some pretty real stuff, dealing with your problems by crying into an open fridge. The monster, who by chance comes along at the right time in Usagi’s life, plunges her into a dream where she is all chibi. Luna, who is all over it, figures that Mamoru’s kiss might get her out of this for some reason, as she can tell that Usagi is upset about something he’s done. She then jumps into his apartment and jumps onto his penis to wake him up (animated gif included below). He kisses her, she’s fine, everyone’s happy. Well not really at all. Mamoru and Usagi are still split up until further notice, so that’s kind of crappy.

Luna pouncing on Mamoru's crotch

Sailor Moon R episode 70 - Koan attacking Rei and Yuuichirou

Episode 70, Battle of the Flames of Love! Mars vs. Koan, covers two abusive relationships. The first is Koan and the horrible Rubeus. He’s completely terrible to Koan, threatening her and ultimately tossing her life away as if it were nothing. Rubeus isn’t terrible because he’s evil and wants to destroy Crystal Tokyo. It’s because of the way he treats women. This is very real horrible behaviour that is a real problem in our society, not some fantastical caricature of what a bad person might be. The other abusive relationship is Rei and Yuuichirou! At the beginning of the episode he’s carrying around her bags like a lap dog. She generally mistreats him for most of the episode, and it’s played up as a bit of a joke. It’s funny but this is kind of terrible. Rei isn’t all bad in this episode, as her behaviour with Koan shows the real strength of the show. Koan is trying to do evil at the Hikawa Shrine, again. It’s a Crystal Point after all. When the fighting starts Rei realizes that there’s good in Koan, and while the Sailor Guardians are attacking her she comes to her defense, putting herself in harm’s way to protect her, getting hit by Sailor Jupiter’s knee. Ultimately when Koan had all but given up and was ready to give her own life and killing her off seemed like an easy option, Sailor Mars wouldn’t have it. The real strength of Sailor Moon and it’s characters is not in their ability to harm someone, but in their compassion and willingness to help even an enemy. Koan is then healed by Sailor Moon’s crystal and is able to return to a normal life, all thanks to Rei. Similar transformations will be seen with the rest of the Ayakashi sisters in the coming episodes, but Rei really set the precedent for this behaviour. With all this considered, we can forgive her mistreatment of Yuuichirou.

Sailor Moon R episode 70 - Sailor Mars defending Koan from Sailor Jupiter's kick

Sailor Moon R episode 70 - Zoisite's final appearance

There are a couple of odd references in this episode. This is actually the final appearance of Zoisite, who actually died back in episode 35. He is seen in a single frame of animation as Koan snatches her bag back from Yuuichirou. Later at Rei’s, Usagi is seen reading reading what looks a lot like a Run Run magazine featuring Sailor V and Artemis on the cover. This isn’t that odd since it’s well established that Sailor V is an anime, manga and video game in the Sailor Moon universe, but seeing a real world manga in the anime is a bit weird.

Sailor Moon R episode 70 - Usagi reading a Sailor V manga

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13, Final Battle – Reincarnation, Review

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - Sailor Moon attacks Metalia

The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal, Act 13, Final Battle – Reincarnation, is now available to stream on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. This is the last full episode to cover the Dark Moon story arc so in a sense it can be considered the season finale, but the story will not conclude until the beginning of next week’s episode which will also serve as a season finale. Last week’s episode had some rather disappointing deviations from the original manga source material. Fans will be happy to see that this week’s episode is fairly faithful, with a number of minor changes.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - Tuxedo Mask and Sailor Moon

First, a comment on the title which, like with the manga, does little to describe what is actually going on here. We’re promised the “Final Battle” but no such thing happens. There is a sort of battle with Metelia but there is no conclusion here. The battle does not finish as the final blows are not taken. Secondly the title mentions reincarnation, which does not actually happen in the strictest sense. The end of the last episode has Sailor Moon killing Tuxedo Mask and herself but they aren’t actually reincarnated because neither actually died. More on that and the 1990 hit film which inspired both scenes later. But that’s just me being nitpicky. And speaking of nitpicky, this episode has some pretty messed up looking animation in it. This is nothing new to the series but I wasn’t this bothered by some of the less consistent animation quality since act 7 so I think it needs mentioning.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - Queen Serenity and Kitten Luna

Luna continues to kick a lot of ass in this episode. She’s pretty scrappy in Sailor Moon Crystal and that doesn’t stop here. She attacks Metalia, this massive unstoppable evil energy. This fails, naturally, and eventually Luna asks Artemis to bring her to the Moon to consult with Queen Serenity and to beg her to seal Metalia away. In a flashback we get a look at Luna when she was a young kitten along with a much younger Queen Serenity, though still one with white hair. The Queen’s dress matches Princess Serenity’s quite a bit. I wonder is she was even Queen yet at this point, though we don’t really know much about Queen Serenity’s background or her parents. Once Usagi becomes Neo Queen Serenity she continues to keep the dress style she had as Princess. Similarly Chibiusa has that type of dress when she appears as a Princess.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - Zombie Sailor Mars

Some minor changes occurred in the Sailor Guardians’ actions in the this episode. They first try to use Sailor Planet attack, which fails. This results in an odd bit of imagery showing them all with white eyes looking like zombies. Then instead of being transported back to their headquarters like they did in the manga they simply stay in the North Pole to attack again, giving up their transformation items and their lives. This is coupled with a number of inspirational flashbacks where Usagi is shown encouraging or befriending each of them, which helps them find the strength they need to keep fighting. This is very similar to a scene from the Sailor Moon R movie in which each of the Sailor Guardians has a similar flashback to encourage them to help Usagi on the asteroid.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - The Sailor Guardians dead

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - Orgel protects Sailor Moon from suicide

While all of this goes on Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask are trapped inside the Silver Crystal which itself gets consumed by Queen Metalia. While they originally appear to be dead, they are both revealed to be alive. They are not resurrected in any way. Both escaped death by the same convenient plot twist, inspired by the 1990 hit film Problem Child. In this film John Ritter’s character is shot by Michael Richards but the bullet is deflected by a lucky dried prune which is in his pocket. Similarly Sailor Moon escapes death by having the sword deflected on the Orgel watch that Tuxedo Mask gave her. Tuxedo Mask escapes death by using the exact same Problem Child inspired trick of having the sword hitting the gems that he has symbolizing the Shitennou.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - The Shitennou

The scene with the Shitennou again shows a small change from the manga. As Jadeite, Nephrite, Zoisite and Kunzite appear as ghosts, now with their full memories and loyal to Mamoru, the gems they are linked to shatter. Originally in the manga these gems take some of the force but only chip a little. Tuxedo Mask keeps them as they make another appearance during the Black Moon Clan story arc. How this change will affect the next arc remains to be seen.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 13 - The Moon Stick and the Silver Crystal

Another change is that Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask manage to escape from inside of Queen Metalia before the final attack. This is different even from the next episode preview at the end of Act 12 which shows Sailor Moon’s Moon Stick growing into a full staff with the sky filled with Queen Metalia, which is no longer the case with the clear view of the moon seen in the final version of the episode. The final battle itself is yet to come.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Conclusion and Commencement - Petite Étrangère

Next time on January 17th we’ll see act 14, Conclusion and Commencement, Petite Étrangère. The episode title as shown here has the spelling “Petite Étrangére”. This is incorrect, as the second E in étrangère has an “accent grave”, towards the back not towards the front. French titles also only capitalize the first letter of the first word but we’ll let that one slide. This is still an improvement over the manga title “Petit Etranger” which omits the accent for the first E (the correct spelling is Étranger), a practice which is generally discouraged and lazy for upper case letters, but it is also wrong because it uses the masculine form of both words which are incorrectly used as it’s a reference to Chibiusa who is by all indications very much female. I don’t mean to harp on spelling too much but this is an episode title so it would have been nice for them to have done a bit of research on this one, especially in light of them having properly spelled the title of last year’s musical “Petite Étrangère”. The spelling of “Materia” for act 12 seems more likely to be a mistake when this case is considered.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask fight Queen Metalia

This next episode will have the real end of the Dark Kingdom arc and the beginning of the Black Moon Clan arc. Some are referring to this as season 2. This will mark the appearance of Chibiusa, though nothing in the preview mentions anything but the conclusion of the battle with Queen Metalia and the aftermath.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Sailor Moon and the Moon Stick

I’ll be traveling on the weekend of the 17th so my review may be a bit late but I will be sure to have something posted sooner or later.

Keep reading for more screenshots from this episode and the next episode preview.

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