You know those rare instances where you don’t want something to end? These are my exact, blunt feelings having finishing the most recent installment of Sailor Moon Crystal. Could this be an episode with good pacing, character development, and animation? Shock. So brace yourselves for this week’s Simulcast Corner. It is gonna be real, trust me.
This episode was definitely one that hit close to home for those nostalgic Moonies. For starters, yes, this is the episode with Usagi wearing the dress, and having all those creepy, weirdo moments with Prince Demande. She is taken prisoner by him, so that he can basically get to reenact his fanboy dreams with her. Think Jabba The Hut, with Princess Leia, but no slave costumes and more bishonen, less worm monster. But indeed, both are equally gross (emotionally, speaking). As a kid, this episode was always a strange one, but never the one where I understood the stakes involved in it as much. But this time around, Usagi’s adult struggles are elevated, leaving a lot to process in what some of her dialogue really means. Unfortunately, it seems the director was more interested in the many angles at which we could see Usage’s rather growing chest, than in developing more creative visuals to showcase her emotional arc.
We learn that Usagi’s and the other Senshi’s magic cannot work when on Black Moon territory, leaving them in a sticky situation. This then moves us into the meat of the Moon sandwich, which is all about Small Lady herself, Chibiusa. As someone that has defended this character to the very end, it was brilliant to see her finally get the mature, lovely respect she deserved. We learn more of her back story, and her own emotional connections to her mom in the past and future, and the pressure she feels living under Usagi/Neo-Queen Serenity’s shadow.
For all those that ever said Chibiusa was a pointless character, here is proof that she has a lot more bite to her bark. Though of course the manga proved this elements a while back, I’m glad this episode (and the rest of Sailor Moon Crystal) can give some animated justice to this tiny little powerhouse of a character. And boy, oh boy, does she have a path set for her that we’ve only just begun to unravel.
Side note, props to this episode for giving much more interaction and development between Pluto and Small Lady. The moment in which The Guardian of Time gives Chibiusa her “word” to instant happiness, truly put a smile on this old school fan’s face.
If there was anything to really nitpick about this episode, which was not much, it is a small, tiny, nerdy question that plagued my mind the entire time I was watching the moments unfold. One of the key sequences, in which we see Neo-Queen Serenity become frozen by the Silver Crystal, her body seems to freeze in a specific, non-sleeping like pose. And yet, in every single shot we’ve seen of Serenity in her crystal bed, she is in an actual sleeping beauty position. Can someone explain to me how her body shifted into said pose while frozen in crystal? No joke, taking my reviewer hat off for this one. I need to know, this is truly bothering me. Did Luna-P magically re-arrange her like a Polly Pocket set? Did she wake up again for two seconds just to get comfortable?! OH THE HUMANITY, WHAT IS GOING ON HERE!?
Creating one of the most energy-filled and on the ball episodes, Sailor Moon Crystal is finally starting to get itself in order. Here’s to hoping that each new episode is as amazing and character development-filled as this, and that the upcoming final battle is just as epic as we have been dreaming.
So what did you think of this week’s Sailor Moon Crystal? Were you digging on the Chibiusa feels? Did you grab a tissue? Did your heart melt? Comment below with your thoughts!
Sailor Moon Crystal airs every other Saturday on Nico-Nico, Hulu, Crunchyroll, and Neon Alley.