The English version of Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15, Infiltration – Sailor Mars, is now available on Hulu

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - The Ayakashi Sisters

The first full episode from the Black Moon Clan story arc is now available to view in English on Hulu and Neon Alley. Act 15, Infiltration – Sailor Mars, introduces us to a bunch of character from the Black Moon Clan including Rubeus, Demande, Esmeraude, Saphir and the Ayakashi Sisters. This episode focuses mainly on the rivalry between Sailor Mars and Koan. Many new voice actors are showing up this week, who are all reprising their roles from the new English dub of the original Sailor Moon anime. Those actors are:

Claudia Lenz as Koan
Cindy Robinson as Berthier
Cassandra Lee Morris as Calaveras
Jessica Gee as Petz
Steve Cannon as Rubeus
Rena S. Mandel as Esmeraude
Greg Felden as Saphir
Matthew Mercer as Prince Demande

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Chibiusa shooting Usagi

This week also gives us a better look at Chibiusa who first showed up at the end of Act 14. Amongst some background character we see a boy who looks an awful lot like Heero Yuy from Gundam Wing. What do you think?

Gundam Wing's Heero Yuy at T. A. Academy in Sailor Moon Crystal

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Infiltration - Sailor Mars

Sailor Moon Crystal Deluxe Limited Edition Blu-Ray vol. 12 Review

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Cover

The last volume of Sailor Moon Crystal was released on Blu-Ray last month, on September 9th. I’ve dragged my feet on this review so much that the next disk, volume 13, is released today in Japan. Volume 12 can be purchased from sites such as Amazon Japan for 5194 yen, about $43 US. The next and final volume can also be ordered from Amazon Japan for 5994 yen, about $50 US. As always this release contains only two episodes, in this case Act 23 and 24, in Japanese only and the cover art included is of Black Lady, Chibiusa’s older and eviler self.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Contents

The charm included with this release is Sailor Moon’s Crystal Star, her transformation broach for this story arc.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Crystal Star Charm

Two episodes are included on this disk. Act 23 – Covert Maneuvers – Wiseman, and Act 24 – Attack – Black Lady. The video quality as always is great. As with other DVD and Blu-Ray releases some minor changes to the animation have taken place since the streaming version. Nothing of significance is included with these particular episodes. Nothing changes any of the scenes in any major way. The biggest change with Act 24 is the colour and brightness for certain scenes. As always you can check out Crystal Comparisons for screenshots which show the changes for any particular episode, including Acts 23 and 24.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Special booklet - Pages 14 and 15 - Character designs

A 20 page full colour booklet is included once again. Unfortunately I am unable to identify the subjects of the first interview. The names are Nozomi Matsuura and Yukiko Kariya. This web site indicates that they work for Bandai, but no other details are given. The second interview is with the voice actors playing the Black Moon Clan. This includes Mamoru Miyano, the voice of Prince Demande, Hiroki Takahashi, the voice of Rubeus, Tsubasa Yonaga, the voice of Saphir, and Houko Kawashima, the voice of Esmeraude. Also included in the booklet are the usual episode summaries for Act 23 and 24, character designs for Black Lady, Prince Demande and Saphir, backgrounds and screenshots from the episodes and a page for Fumio Osano, Osabu.

These episodes include an audio commentary featuring cast and crew from the show. This includes Munehisa Sakai, director of the first 26 episodes of Sailor Moon Crystal, Hisako Kanemoto, the voice of Sailor Mercury, Rina Sato, the voice of Sailor Mars, Ami Koshimizu, the voice of Sailor Jupiter, and Shizuka Ito, the voice of Sailor Venus.

Should you get this? Should you pay over $50 to buy and ship this set with only two episodes in a language you can’t speak when an English and Japanese version will eventually be released for much less and you can watch the series for free online in the mean time? That’s your call!

Keep reading for more images of this set’s packaging including images of all pages of the included special booklet.

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Esmeraude, Demande, Saphir and Rubeus Petit Chara figures are coming soon!

Petit Chara Esmeraude, Demande, Saphir and Rubeus

We’ve already gotten Petit Chara figures for the Ayakashi Sisters and now we’re getting some for the rest of the Black Moon Clan. This photo, posted to the official Sailor Moon site, clearly shows silhouettes for Esmeraude, Prince Demande, Saphir and Rubeus. The image also includes the inverse crescent moon characteristic of the Black Moon Clan.

Sailor Moon Crystal - Black Moon Clan character art - Diamond, Saphire, Rubeus and Esmeraude

There isn’t much in the way of detail posted but it is mentioned that this set follows the Ayakashi Sisters leaving little doubt as to what these are. These puzzles are about as difficult to solve as your average “Who’s that Pokémon?” bumper.

Support the site by buying some of the previously released Petit Chara figures using the links below.

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Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24, Attack – Black Lady, review

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Black lady kissing her father Endymion

The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal, Act 24, Attack – Black Lady, is now available to stream on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. This week we celebrate Father’s Day weekend as Black Lady continues to make out with her father Tuxedo Mask as she and Wise Man attack Sailor Moon, the Sailor Guardians and the Earth itself.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Endymion and Black Lady

As with Act 23, we focus mainly on Black Lady in this episode. She is controlling Tuxedo Mask, who is now going by his evil name of Endymion, to make him her boyfriend. This seems a bit creepy but, as mentioned in last week’s review, this is Black Lady’s odd way to dealing with the feelings she had as a child now that she has unexpectedly and unnaturally aged and acquired a great amount of power.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Endymion attacks Sailor Moon with her Cutie Moon Rod

Endymion is full on evil now, attacking Sailor Moon with her own attack item. At first this upsets her. Mamoru using the item that they made together against her. She then notices that Chibusa’s possessive behaviour is like how she was feeling earlier in the season, when Usagi was jealous of Chibiusa monopolizing Mamoru’s time. She doesn’t see Black Lady as an evil enemy but as a jealous young girl, and she tries to plead with her.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Three Evil Black Crystals on Earth

This doesn’t work well. Black Lady brings a third Evil Black Crystal to Earth which promises to kill everybody. So who’s left on Earth anyway? Crystal Tokyo is pretty much destroyed but we don’t see much of the rest of the planet. Perhaps there are a bunch of people still living a nice life in Canada!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Prince Demande kills Wise Man

Prince Demande and Saphir are being controlled as well, however Prince Demande’s powers allow him to break out of the mind control. He is attacked by Saphir, who is under Wise Man’s power, and in defending himself he kills him. This does not explicitly happen in the manga. Prince Demande apologizes to his brother but only attacks Wise Man. We never actually see what happens to Saphir beyond this point in the manga, but in Sailor Moon Crystal there is little doubt he is dead. Prince Demande then kills Wise Man revealing an old already dead corpse, but it turn out this was not really Wise Man’s actual body!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Nemesis is tiny

Wise Man’s seemingly final form, as revealed at this point in time, is planet Nemesis! Well that’s kind of weird! The old corpse in a cloak was actually just a ruse, the real deal is this evil entity that is the planet Nemesis. Black Lady brings it through a portal down on top of Crystal Tokyo. This scene is reminiscent to the film Transformers: Dark of the Moon where Cybertron is brought to into Chicago through a large portal. My first thought then, as was my first thought when watching this episode, is what a terrible impact this would have on the Earth’s gravity. The Moon is far so it’s effects on us are relatively small, though the tides are not completely insignificant. Put a planet a few hundred feet from another planet’s surface and it will be a whole different story. This seems like a non issue however, as Nemesis is incredibly tiny. We can see most of it coming out of the portal with Crystal Tokyo under it and all considered it would not be bigger than most mountains. I certainly expected the planet to be much larger than this. The actual planet X which Nemesis was inspired by was originally believed to exist due to gravitational anomalies in our solar system which were later explained. A body this small would not have any such strong gravitational effects as it’s smaller than most asteroids and comets.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Young Sailor Pluto

We get a bit of Sailor Pluto backstory, as we get a look at her when she was quite young. The original Queen Serenity, Princess Serenity’s Mother, speaks to her in the distant past. This would have to be taking place on the Moon in the years of Silver Millennium. She is given three rules to follow! First, don’t move time. Let’s assume this means time travel. She does this all the time, and is why we’re in this mess in the first place. Second, guard the door! She stops doing that in this episode. The third and most important is not mentioned, but we’ll learn all about it in the next episode as she breaks it.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 24 - Diana gets a part time job

Diana, the adorable kitten, plays an important role in this episode. Sailor Pluto abandons her post, and who can blame her after spending thousands of years in the same clothes standing without a break watching a door, and puts Diana in charge! Could Diana possibly do a worse job than Sailor Pluto who has broken every rule imposed on her? Sailor Pluto’s job is to guard the Space-Time Door, and as far as we’ve seen in this story arc every person who she has encountered has eventually been allowed to travel through time. Why did the Black Moon Clan even need their own method of time travel? They should just have befriended the lonely Sailor Guardian and gotten their own Key of Space-Time to do whatever they want! Diana could literally do nothing and still do the exact same job that Sailor Pluto has this season! One also has to wonder how things go following this episode. We never get an update on Diana’s temporary door guarding duties but we do know that she is never relieved and yet she will later show up in the past. Is there a new guard that we’re not aware of or is Sailor Pluto replaced with a scarecrow or something?

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 25 - Chibiusa in a tear drop

Up next is Act 25, Showdown – Death Phantom. Things are really starting to wind up as Sailor Pluto breaks her final rule and pays the ultimate price to protect the Earth and her friends. Chibiusa will struggle to free herself from Black Lady, who is really her. Will all that work out?

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 25 - Showdown - Death Phantom

Act 25 will be the second last episode of the series, with Act 26 being the final episode currently planned. There has still been no confirmation of any additional episodes beyond Act 26 for Sailor Moon Crystal. At this point it seems possible that the series will end with the final episode of the Black Moon story arc.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 25 - Sailor Pluto hugging Chibiusa

Keep reading for more screenshots from this episode and the next episode preview for Act 25.

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Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22, Hidden Agenda – Nemesis, Review

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Black Lady

The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal, Act 22, Hidden Agenda – Nemesis, is now available to stream on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. This week we get teased a bit more with Black Lady but we still don’t get a really good look at her. Instead we focus on more exposition and freeing Sailor Moon, Mercury, Mars and Jupiter who are trapped on Nemesis.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Black Lady

Why does it take us so long to finally get around to showing Black Lady? The flow of the past few episodes seems a bit weird but this is partly due to the fact that the manga was originally broken up differently. This was changed when the manga was reprinted around the time the live action Sailor Moon series was out. Originally the last episode, Act 21, and this episode were part of one manga chapter, Act 20 Complication – Nemesis. This happened once in the first arc and will happen once again with the final Act of the Black Moon story arc. All in all we will have 26 episodes of Sailor Moon Crystal for what was originally 23 chapters of the manga. The original story that covered these two episodes was very long, almost 100 pages, so it makes sense to break it up into two episodes but the pacing seems a bit odd as it takes us forever to tease out the appearance of Black Lady. Sailor Moon Crystal is a 23 minute show but a manga chapter had no such restriction which is why there were some very long stories some months.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Chibiusa takes Wiseman's hand

Next episode preview at the end of Act 21

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Chibiusa wearing the correct top, with symbol of the Black Moon Clan on her head

Intro for Act 22

Shirt gate continues! This show can’t seem to make up it’s mind on this thing. I know I’ve mentioned this time and time again but as long as they keep screwing it up I will keep harping on them for it. As you can see above, the next episode preview that played at the end of Act 21 showed Chibiusa with her long sleeved blue uniform which she should absolutely not be wearing at this point. This is the uniform she wore when she came from the future which she traded for a short sleeve white uniform when she started going to school. She wore this on her trip back to the future and did not bring a change of clothes. The animators consistently mess up the colour of Chibiusa’s shirt in next episode previews, fixing it before the next one comes out. We can clearly see in this how last minute this show is prepared. Another change that can be seen is that Chibiusa, pre transformation, is seen with the symbol of the Black Moon Clan on her forehead. This is new to Sailor Moon Crystal. In the manga and anime Chibiusa doesn’t get this symbol until she transforms into Black Lady.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Volume 19 sure is popular

A new location featured this week is the library which houses many books. Funny when you actually get a nice look at them it looks like there are just a bunch of copies of the same book. So many volume 19s of some kind of book all over these shelves! The original Sailor Moon manga was collected in 18 volumes. Perhaps the most precious thing collected in this library is more Sailor Moon manga! These books are so important that Venus is tasked with just watching them. Tuxedo Mask runs off to find Chibusa and she is stuck there to protect a bunch of books!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Sailor Venus has lips

If you’ve ever wondered what Sailor Moon characters look like with lips we now have an answer! With another funny face frame this week we get to see Sailor Venus with lips and she looks a bit like a frog!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Death Phantom

We get another look at the Death Phantom, the Earth criminal who became Wise Man. It’s mentioned that he has Beast Hand and Evil Eye, though there is no indication of what that is. He seems to have used some sort of supernatural power to kill a bunch of people, but he is said to be a human. Indeed Sailor Moon is full of these kinds of magical people but there really isn’t much in the way of detail about Death Phantom. It seems this could be a whole side story on it’s own which never really gets investigated.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - A building on Nemesis

Nemesis is such an odd planet. When we see it from space it’s surface seems volatile. It does not appear to have a solid surface but perhaps one of molten lava or some sort of gas or energy. It’s mentioned that the reactor is the only place which opens to the outside, yet we clearly see buildings with the reactor’s energy coming out of it. What exactly is going on here? Is this a building on the surface of Nemesis? Is this an underground cavern with buildings in it? This doesn’t seem all that efficient when a cavern isn’t really exposed to the elements. Perhaps this is the surface but above them is a thick cloud or energy layer that can’t be penetrated? This brings up a ton of questions. Who are the labourers of the Black Moon Clan who make these buildings? What is the size of their population? Where do they get their food? The manga never shows actual structures so some of this doesn’t really come up but an anime series like this needs to have proper backgrounds and a level of detail that isn’t shown in a manga series.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Rei and dead people

Finally Sailor Moon is able to transform. This isn’t really explained but the key is that the reactor connects to the outside. As another suggestion that they are underground, Sailor Moon’s powers are blocked where she is. Being close to the reactor allows her to get her power and in turn transfer that to her friends. How gross is the room Sailor Mercury, Mars and Jupiter are in? It’s just full of dead bodies.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - The Sailor Guardians return

Next episode preview at the end of Act 21

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - The Sailor Guardians with a new background

Act 22

As another change from the next episode preview once the Sailor Guardians show up the reactor’s energy is shown in the background more prominently and shining through a bit. This is a fairly minor change but yet another reminder that these episodes are tweaked right up to the last minute.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Black Lady

Next episode preview at the end of Act 21

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Black Lady

Act 22

Yet another change is this shot of Black Lady’s eyes. Originally all we see are Black Lady’s eyes in the next episode preview but here in the episode proper they are using the sort of blurring effect to hide her identity instead. It seems that the method of obscuring Black Lady’s identity was still being worked out after a couple of weeks ago’s airing.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Black Lady

Black Lady is seen but not really seen throughout. In the manga she appears as a sort of ghostly whisp but here she’s just sort of blurry. Perhaps she has that same problem Bigfoot has where you can’t take a clear picture of him. We can see her clothes in Sailor Moon Crystal which is a first, this is something that normally wouldn’t show up until the next episode. She doesn’t do a ton but does manage to kill Rubeus which tells us she isn’t really on board with the Black Moon Clan but instead has some other agenda.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 22 - Wise Man Kawaii emoticon eyes

Wise Man has the most ridiculous eyes in this episode. Every time Black Lady does something amusing he gets these emoticon type eyes which look like something out of those letters that scroll across a Niconico feed. OMG! #kawaii ^_^; @_@;

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 23 - Black Lady

Next in 3 weeks on June 6th is Act 23, Covert Maneuvers – Wiseman. This time we’ll get a proper look at Black Lady without any blurriness.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 23 - Covert Maneuvers - Wiseman

Keep reading to see more screenshots from Act 22 and the next episode preview for Act 23.

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Viz announces the voices of the Black Moon Clan for their new English dub of Sailor Moon R

Sailor Moon R episode 72 - The Ayakashi Sisters' Beauty Quartette

Last month Viz announced the voice actors you’ll be hearing as part of Viz’s new dub of Sailor Moon R once the Black Moon Clan shows up. You can currently listen to the dub of episode 60, which features the voices of Rubeus and the Ayakashi Sisters. We will be getting a lot more of these voices tomorrow as we get the dubbed versions of episodes 61 through 68 on Hulu and Neon Alley as part of the Mini Moonlight Party. The voices of Esmeraude, Saphir and Prince Demande will not be showing up as part of the first half of the season so we won’t be hearing them until later this year.

Here’s the cast of the Black Moon Clan:

Claudia Lenz as Koan
Cindy Robinson as Berthier
Cassandra Lee Morris as Calaveras
Jessica Gee as Petz
Steve Cannon as Rubeus
Rena S. Mandel as Esmeraude
Greg Felden as Saphir
Matthew Mercer as Prince Demande

These are mostly newly cast actors with the exception of Cindy Robinson who was previously cast as Queen Beryl and is now voicing Berthier. The cast of Viz’s new dub of the original Sailor Moon anime will be reprising their roles in Sailor Moon Crystal so we will be hearing these same voice actors once the second story arc of Sailor Moon Crystal gets dubbed.

Yesterday we even received a Tweet from Rena Strober (credited as Rena S. Mandel) to let us know that she’s currently working on dubbing Esmeraude! We can’t wait to hear what she sounds like.

It was previously announced that Chibiusa would be voiced by Sandy Fox and Sailor Pluto would be voiced by Veronica Taylor.

The first season of Viz’s new dub is currently available on DVD and Blu-Ray. Sailor Moon R part 1 will be released in June. Buy these sets using the links below to support the site.

Source: Anime News Network

Watch Sailor Moon R episodes 85 and 86 on Hulu

Sailor Moon R episode 85 - Black Lady

The latest episodes of Sailor Moon R are now available on Hulu and Neon Alley. This week with episodes 85 and 86 we finally get to see Black Lady, the evil version of Chibiusa. We also get a brief look at Saphir and Petz’s relationship.

Sailor Moon R episode 85 - Chibiusa's Birthday Party

Episode 85, The Dark Queen: Birth of Black Lady, introduces us to the older incarnation of Chibiusa. Wise Man is all about exploiting people to serve his purposes and Chibiusa is a prime candidate. You see at one point everyone forgot her birthday, so that’s a good reason to make her evil. Wise Man perverts her memories not by directly fabricating them but simply by being selective about what he allows her to remember. The twisted version of the past that he shows her paints her parents and the other Sailor Guardians are mean careless people who don’t care about her birthday. In these scenes we get a nice look at the future versions of the Sailor Guardians. Here they appear to go about their daily business in their transformed state, referring to each other by their planet names. Is this their true forms in the future? In a world where they don’t need to pretend to be normal girls, do they simply act as Sailor Guardians 24/7? Do they sleep in these outfits? Anyway, Black Lady. She is an evil and older version of Chibiusa. She even makes Luna P evil! But this doesn’t last all that long as within an episode Sailor Moon uses the Silver Crystal to restore Chibiusa’s original memories. It turns out it was a surprise party after all! This reminds me of that episode of My Pet Monster where Monzie returned to Monster Land thinking his friends forgot his birthday. If TV has taught me anything it’s that if your friends pretend to forget about your birthday it’s actually because they are planning a wicked surprise party for you! Anyway Black Lady is on her way to being healed when Wise Man makes her evil again. What a jerk! At least now she might have a chance to make out with her dad.

Sailor Moon R episode 86 - Saphir and Petz

Episode 86, Saphir Dies: Wiseman’s Trap, continues the Japanese tradition of not caring even a little about spoilers in their titles. Yes, Saphir dies in this episode. Saphir is a bit sneaky and overhears Wise Man sloppily talking to himself about how he’s evil and wants to destroy the world and doesn’t really care about the plight of the oppressed Black Moon Clan like he’s been pretending. Saphir takes a piece of technology that the Evil Black Crystal needs and runs off to the past, getting injured by Wise Man in the process. It turns out he used to have a relationship with Petz, so he goes to see her. Demande is starting to suspect and so Saphir is determined to clear things up which doesn’t work out as Wise Man kills him. This leaves Demande quite suspicious and heartbroken at the death of his brother. Petz is also heartbroken as is Usagi who has just recently learned of Saphir’s existence. Black Lady doesn’t do all that much in this episode but she is hanging around in the background still not making out with her father.

Sailor Moon R episode 86 - Demande and Saphir

Support the site by buying the first season of Sailor Moon on DVD and Blu-Ray using the links below:

Sailor Moon R episode 86 - Saphir dies

Sailor Moon R episode 85 - Evil Luna P

Sailor Moon R episode 85 - 1000 year old Sailor Mars

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15, Infiltration – Sailor Mars, review

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Koan the fortune teller

The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal is now available on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. Act 15, Infiltration – Sailor Mars, gives us a better look at the mysterious Chibiusa and then pits Koan of the Black Moon Clan’s Ayakashi Sisters against Sailor Mars.

Sailor Moon Crystal Intro - The Black Moon Clan

The first thing to note this week are the changes to the intro. Despite a few minor cosmetic changes the scenes specific to the first story arc, that being Queen Serenity and the Dark Kingdom, have been replaced with images of the Black Moon Clan, Chibiusa and Sailor Pluto. This is actually a very short part of the intro, as most of it is fairly generic not having anything season specific. That said if you look closely at Sailor Moon’s brooch you will see that it is still the one she had in the first story arc.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - The Ayakashi Sisters

The Black Moon Clan are finally here! We get a good first look at pretty much all of the characters on their home planet of Nemesis (which Rubeus mistakenly refers to as a star, which may be a subtitle issue). We see Demande, Esmeraude, Saphir, Rubeus and Wise Man. We also get a look at the Ayakashi Sisters though this episode heavily features Koan.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Chibiusa shooting Usagi

Chibiusa’s gun wasn’t real! It just had a flower in it. She decides to follow Usagi around, a good instinct as she has the Silver Crystal and is Sailor Moon, so she brainwashes the Tsukino family into thinking she belongs there. This causes Luna to hit Usagi and Mamoru in order to avoid them being brainwashed. Nice to see Luna hitting Mamoru right in the face. It’s also nice to see Shingo again! He is dropped so quickly in the original anime that it’s good to see that he’s still around.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - The Tsukino family being hypnotized while Luna hits Mamoru in the face

The girls receive new transformation items and communicators in this episode. These transformation pens are called the Star Power Sticks and the girls mention that they feel more powerful after transforming with them, which explains Sailor Mars’s new power Burning Mandala and Sailor Mercury’s new power Shine Aqua Illusion.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - New transformation items and communicators

Arcades are so 1992! The Crown Arcade has been replaced with the Crown Fruit Parlor as the main hang out place of our characters. I’m not sure if this was meant to reflect the dwindling popularity of arcades when the manga was first published, the aging interests of the characters in the series or just a way to make it easier to tell the story. It’s easier to have exposition happen as the girls drink some juice rather than amongst noisy arcade games. A new character, Asanuma, is introduced at the Fruit Parlor. A scene from the manga has him commenting that he thinks that a beautiful girl like Rei is more fitting as a girlfriend to Mamoru than Usagi. Indeed, I support this manga shipping of Mamoru and Rei but unfortunately Sailor Moon Crystal chose not to include this.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Crown Fruit Parlor

The main plot develops at Rei’s school, T. A. Academy. It’s an all girl’s school. All kinds of pseudoscience surround this episode’s plot as students investigate UFOs, spontaneous combustion and fortune telling! One character that is seen in the hall of T. A. Academy looks suspiciously like Heero Yuy from the 1995 anime series Gundam Wing. I find the other characters in this scene look a bit like they could be from other anime series, but no specific ones come to mind besides a girl showing a passing resemblance to Miki from Marmalade Boy.

Gundam Wing's Heero Yuy at T. A. Academy in Sailor Moon Crystal

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Gundam Wing's Heero Yuy at Rei's school

One student of T. A. Academy is the white haired Kotono Sarashina. She is investigating all these pseudoscientific things that in the context of this completely fictional story happen to be real. Her white hair is a bit odd to see. I suppose she’s simply meant to have very light blonde hair, but she looks a bit like a ghost or a really old person! She is just one of the many characters who isn’t given any colour in the manga, so the artists behind Sailor Moon Crystal are free to give her any hair colour they chose.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Kotono Sarashina

Rei is spending her time at the festival reading fortunes, which in the real world is nonsense but is a thing she can really do in the fictional world in which this story takes place. She has competition with Koan who is using her fortune telling powers to predict when people will die in the hopes that they will decide to join the Black Moon Clan with their remaining years. Not a terribly great plan.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Rei the fortune teller

The other plan the Black Moon Clan has in this episode involves burning people alive! Originally in the Manga Rei has a vision of a young girl being burned alive by Koan. This is not quite as terrible in Sailor Moon Crystal as the young girl is replaced by an adult man. The Black Moon Clan has a number of drones who originally pose as nuns and then run around making sounds very similar to those made by the Snow Dancers in the Sailor Moon S movie.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Black Moon Clan nunsSailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Black Moon Clan nuns

Once the combat starts, Koan and Sailor Mars face off. Sailor Mars gets frozen by Koan’s fire. Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask summon the new attack item the Cutie Moon Rod which uses Moon Princess Halation to kill Koan. A pity, really, that she has to die. Indeed, this is how it was originally written in the manga. I always came to appreciate how the anime played out with Rei befriending Koan and sacrificing herself to protect her, ultimately making her abandon her evil ways to open up a makeup business which her sisters join her in. It shows a side of Sailor Moon that is more about forgiveness and friendship and less about power.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - The Cutie Moon Rod

Sailor Mars is kidnapped. That’s it. She’s gone for a bunch of episodes now. How terrible!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15 - Burning Mandala

Next week is Act 16, Abduction – Sailor Mercury. This will be an Ami heavy episode as she faces off against Berthier. The episode will also feature puppet Tuxedo Mask!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 16 - Berthier

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

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Check out the character designs for the Black Moon Clan in Sailor Moon Crystal

Sailor Moon Crystal - Black Moon Clan character art - Diamond, Saphire, Rubeus and Esmeraude

Character art featuring Prince Demande, Saphir, Rubeus and Esmeraude has been posted to the Sailor Moon Official Site. Not included are the Ayakashi sisters who will also be joining the show starting with the next episode.

Prince Demande, Saphire, Rubeus and Esmeraude will first appear in Sailor Moon Crystal Act 15, Infiltration – Sailor Mars, which will be released on Saturday February 7th. They are part of the Black Moon Clan who will be the main villains for most of phase two of Sailor Moon Crystal covering the story of Chibiusa and Crystal Tokyo.

What do you think of these designs?

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 14 - Rubeus

We previously saw a glimpse of Rubeus in one of Rei’s visions near the end of Act 14.

Ticketing and other info about the Sailor Moon Petite Étrangère musical plus La Reconquista DVD details

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Petite Étrangère musical

The Sailor Moon official site has been updated with a new poster for the upcoming musical Sailor Moon Petite Étrangère! This poster features the cast of the musical including new characters Sailor Pluto and Chibiusa. A pre-sale lottery is starting today and will run until Sunday June 15th. More details about that can be found at this site.

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Petite Étrangère musical - Tuxedo Mask

Sailor Pluto will be played by Mikako Ishii, a Japanese model. Chibiusa and Sailor Chibi Moon will be played by Kokoro Kuge, a 10 year old actress, and Airi Kanda, an 11 year old actress. There are two actors playing the role of Chibiusa which was the case for earlier musicals in which she appeared. In keeping with the Sailor Moon La Reconquista musical, this show will have an all female cast. Not shown in this poster but also appearing in this musical are Erika Mahiro as Prince Demande, Sora Manami as Saphir, Riona Tatemichi as Rubeus, Mitsumi Hiromura as Esmeraude and Yui Ito as Black Lady.

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon La Requonquista musical DVD cover

The Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon La Reconquista musical which played last September will be available on DVD starting July 9th. You can pre-order it from Amazon Japan (6264 yen or $61 US) or CD Japan (7800 yen or $76 US). The DVD is a 2 disk set including behind the scenes footage and a 24 page booklet. This is a Japanese language DVD which is region coded to play only on Japanese or region free DVD players. Why this isn’t released as a Blu-Ray in 2014 is a mystery to me.

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