Dalin’s Simulcast Corner – Sailor Moon Crystal Episode 15 Review

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Firstly, I want to apologize for my lack of posting last week. But have no fear, Simulcast Corner is back! Now let’s return to see what is up with Usagi and friends over on Sailor Moon Crystal!

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That’s right, kids! We’re officially done with the Queen Beryl storyline, and now we’re going full Black Moon arc. That means loads of new villains in fabulous costumes, and new merchandising possibilities, of course. But putting the fangirl purchasing thoughts to the side, it’s great to see my favorite villains back in all their animated glory. Granted, they could have gotten a more interesting introduction, but I’ll take what I can get. This episode featured my favorite of the baddie Ayakashi sisters, Koan.

We then get to see our senshi in a more relaxed setting. Sadly, one of the draw backs of the new series is that we don’t get too much one on one time with the girls in their non-warrior personas. We are always seeing them in battle, but never get to experience their lives in school or being typical teens. Finally, 15 episodes later, we get more down time with our inner and Moon crew. Wish it could have come sooner, but we’ve got it, and that’s good enough…. right? Hmmm…..

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This is also where our ladies get their new transformation pens and other new “star powers.” Unlike in the previous series, this scene goes more along the lines of manga, in that the delivery of said new powers is more anticlimactic. And as much as that is cool in some respects, compared to the original, this is definitely a much weaker way for the girls to receive their new abilities. I love that the prior series built upon the emotional turmoils that the girls go through to gain their new powers, sort of like a right of passage. Though some can argue that they go through a lot in the first half of Crystal to have new attacks, wands, etc., it doesn’t feel nearly as rewarding for the audience as it did before.

After some development (kinda) of Rei’s character, and seeing her involvement in her school’s extracurricular activities, Koan and her band of hilarious zombie nuns, go full baddie on our senshi crew. Through a series of bland attacks that do absolutely no damage to the villains, we get even more anticlimactic introductions to the senshi’s new attacks. And yes, if you’ve been sensing a theme throughout this review…. let me spell it out for you….

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Yeah, after careful examination and a few minutes of Sailor Moon passionate thinking, I came to the conclusion this episode was just plain boring. Though this version is based on the manga, I felt like the ease at which these new powers and other abilities came to the girls seemed bland and unmotivated. And the same goes for Chibiusa. Yeah, she’s in the show now too, but because she was only in a handful of minutes during this episode, she didn’t stand out that much to me in all honesty.

But on the positive side, this episode can easily be categorized (ironically) as the funniest one thus far. Though the senshi elements shown here are a mixed bag, Usagi’s reactions to the majority of the moments shown are well done. Kotono Mitsuishi’s voice acting is superb here as well, clearly proving she’s having the time of her life in this iconic role.

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Overall, this was a weak episode, one that relied too much on fangirl squees of nostalgic memories rather than good storytelling, and seemed overall a rushed effort in pacing (and, as usual, in the animation), continuing the unfortunate trend this series can’t seem to shake off. Hopefully this is just me getting settled to this new Sailor Moon yet again, because if I don’t get myself comfortable, this is gonna be one bumpy, Mahou Shoujo ride.

Sailor Moon Crystal airs every other Saturday on Crunchyroll, Nico-Nico, Hulu and Neon Alley. 

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