2:25 – Cold-Hearted Rubeus! The Four Sisters of Sorrow
Alternative Title: Gotta Start Picking Better Places to Transform
First Aired: 30th October 1993
Worried that they might be culpable for their younger sisters’ betrayal, Petz and Calaveras vow to eliminate their siblings and bring honour to the Black Moon clan. For this, Rubeus gifts a special wand to Petz that enhances her abilities by several times, yet it also causes d mad hubris within her. Having lured Sailor Moon into a trap, even Petz is in danger as Rubeus reveals the true nature of the evil wand…
Woah, that synopsis was spot on. I’m so good at this.
After the rather dull conversion of Berthier to the good side, it’s a pleasure to report that this episode gets back on track. Great moments from the Phantom Sisters – they don’t draw out the drama past this episode, so it’s all great stuff – and some fantastic action create a tense episode.
Plus, a brand new power from the Sailor Senshi… always a bonus!
Wiseman appears once more before Rubeus, essentially telling him to get his ass in gear or he’s going to get fired, albeit somewhat more poetically. Actually, I love how Wiseman puts this:
“Rebeus. Your future has two paths. One is the path of victory that leads to glory. The other is the path of defeat that leased to darkness and ends in death. There is only one way for you to survive.”
This is the most cheery HR meeting I’ve ever seen. Rubeus is looking distinctly unsettled. Always like seeing him squirm. He’s a great bad guy, not overly developed or anything, just malicious, scheming and dangerous. You don’t need more from him than that. For complexity in antagonists, you need only look so far as his underlings…
Wiseman is a master of manipulation, despite the fact that no one should ever fucking trust him. I mean, just look at the guy.
In a more happy scene, the Sailor Senshi are enjoying a peaceful day at Hikawa Shrine, cooking yams in leaves, and they’re joined by Chibi-Usa, Koan and Berthier, now humans. I like this little slice of life.
Koan is proper creeping me out at how nice she’s being to Chibi-Usa. trying to make up for all those times she punched her to the ground and tried to murder her? If I were Chibi-Usa I’d still be running.
Berthier, too, is going out of her way to be nice, talking about how nice the world is and junk. A little forced (she was literally just trying to kill everyone a second ago), but let’s give them this one conceit for this episode.
In a complete cop-out, Berthier admits to Ami that none of the Phantom Sisters have any useful information about the enemy whatsoever. Whatsoever. I mean, come on, where did you grow up? How about that for starters? This has always bugged me.
These Phantom Sisters are much toothless now that they’re good. Much preferred them screaming and attacking stuff.
This happy scene is being spied upon by the Black Moon UFO: specifically Petz and Calaveras. Petz is furious at their betrayal, while Calaveras is worried that their sisters’ shattered loyalties will bring them into question to.
Damn straight, considering what happens.
Rubeus appears to give the remaining Phantom Sisters an ultimatum – take care of their wayward sisters or face the consequences. He gets Petz all worked up, proving to be just as skilful a manipulator as Wiseman when he wants to be, then gives her a new present.
It’s a little better than the one he gave Koan a couple of episodes ago.
This staff, Rubeus promises, will enhance Petz’s Dark Power by several times. You wonder why everyone isn’t walking around with one of these. Calaveras looks pretty worried at Rubeus threat to remove them if they fail to kill their sisters, the Sailor Senshi and The Rabbit all in one go. Well heck yeah, I’d be pretty worried too.
Calaveras and Petz have never been on the best of terms, but today their fighting has taken on an unpleasant tone – not just squabbling, but threatening. I really like the tone they’ve struck in this episode.
We head on back to Hikawa Shrine. Usagi now has all the goddamn yams, which eventually results in her letting one rip in front of everyone. I must say, fart jokes aren’t normally my thing, but I did chuckle at this. She’s just does not adhere in anyway to standards of femininity, and that’s just fantastic.
All that from a fart joke?
And then we lead straight into Koan and Berthier being attacked from the sky. That’s quite a juxtaposition, there. They got all the humour in the episode out of the way I guess.
The sisters are abducted (UFO, see?) with, like, laser-tentacles (OK I’ve never seen a UFO in a movie do that…) right in front of the Senshi.
The episode moves straight into business, with Usagi doing a Harry Potter on Chibi-Usa and shoving her into a cupboard. What, you expected her to stay in there, Usagi? Of course she didn’t.
The pacing here is rather off. Evidently they had to squeeze a lot in, because it feels all rather unwieldy as the girls begin to transform – Chibi-Usa has broken out, fearful for Koan and Berthier, suspecting that it’s her fault they were taken (it’s not, for once), and comes across the Senshi mid-transformation.
Revelatiooons! To be honest, you can sort of forget that Chibi-Usa doesn’t know that Usagi is Sailor Moon sometimes.
The Senshi didn’t pick a very private place to transform – they do it right in the bloody open, where anyone could just come across them. And, hey, helicopters and planes exist.
Other then the shock of realising that the five girls who she always hangs around are the same five girls who is always rescuing her, Chibi-Usa also finally realises where the Ginzuishou is: you remember how hard she was trying to find it, then just sort of forgot about it?
Someone just spilt the flour because the plot thickened.
Suddenly, it’s night, for no real reason. Were the Senshi just running through Tokyo for hours? It does look lovely though, the colour scheme is brilliantly, and reminds me a lot of the early episodes in the first season.
Sailor Mercury uses her super computer to locate a spike in energy “to the West”, and instead of taking the bus, they run the whole way there. There’s also that perennial problem of how the entire population of Tokyo seems to disappear at will whenever the Sailor Senshi are about.
Maybe the public have cottoned on that bad shit happens when the Senshi are in town.
Chibi-Usa is also in tow… and for once she doesn’t get herself into trouble. That’s amazing in of itself.
Petz and Calaveras have their trapped sisters in a bubble high above a bridge. Not sure if it’s meant to be any one in particular, it reminds me a lot of the Rainbow Bridge connection Tokyo to the man-made island of Odaiba.
Calaveras is skeptical of the plan to lure the Senshi out with their unconscious sisters, as would I, and coldly suggests just killing them now. That’s really cold, actually. Petz feels like using them a little longer, however.
Calaveras is also discontent with Petz’s new toy – the evil wand thing is making Petz sounds like a goddamn loon, she keep muttering about “infinite power” and “invincibility”.
The younger sisters finally wake up and beg that their older sisters cease their evil actions, but neither Petz nor Calaveras are having any of it. Thankfully we are spared any more heart-felt speeches just for now by the appearance of Sailor Moon.
All five of the girls are on fire today! This is definitely a “group-effort episode” – we don’t get enough of these, it’s normally just one or two of them pull their weight before Sailor Moon comes in with the killing shot.
Petz’s upgraded Dark Thunder (thanks to the wand) really is rather terrifying. It destroys part of the bridge that the Sailor Senshi had been posing atop (seriously, how the hell did they get up there…?) Definitely high-stakes today. Petzs is scary in a way she hasn’t been before.
This is all being overseen by Rubeus, chuckling away in his UFO like a pervert. Rather ominously, he seems to suggest that he’s planning to rid himself of Petz and Calaveras immanently, too…
What a bastard.
The Sailor Senshi really is outclassed by the new improved Dark Thunder, and can’t seem to figure out why Petz is so powerful, until Mercury uses her computer to isolate the wand as the source.
Well, duuuuh. What did you think was different about Petz, her hair?
So now they have a plan. I like this – the Senshi are outclassed, and use their brains to formulate a plan of attack. I don’t think this happens as often as I’d like, really. This episode is banging so far.
Sailor Venus tries to snatch the wand away with a Venus Love-Me Chain, but Dark Thunder isn’t the only thing to have levelled up, and Petz dodges.
In fact, she’s a goddamn Velociraptor, running like a loon down the side of the bridge. I love this shot, she looks insane and terrifying rushing towards them.
Bunging Mandala get’s swept aside too, and the Senshi are all hit with a massive attack. They’re not looking so good. At this point we can only wonder how they’ll escape. Great tension today.
If that weren’t enough, Koan and Berthier begin pleading for Petz to stop. Their begging annoys Calaveras, who arrogantly tells Petz to finish them off now that they don’t need them anymore….
And Petz decides to zap all three of them instead. How Koan and Berthier, mere humans, aren’t killed immediately is beyond me.
Calaveras is, understandably, confused and hurt. Petz has gone full Jack Nicholson, she’s absolutely infatuated with her wand, to the point that she thinks she could master Rubeus and take over the Black Moon clan. Who do you think gave you that power, Petz?
Sailor Jupiter and Sailor Mars catch Koan and Berthier before they fall. That must have been about a 40 foot drop. Blimey they’re strong.
Hey, Petz, why did you zap them just enough to hurt them but not kill? Calaveras is now beginning to turn against you. Smart move. Oh well, we can put her hubris down to the wand I guess.
I get a little peeved by this next bit. Sailor Moon comes over and asks if Calaveras is OK, placing a hand on her shoulder. Calaveras is rightly confused as shit by this – they’re still enemies after all. Compassion is one thing, but this is just a little silly.
It seriously looks as though Sailor Moon is going in for the kiss. This “love” talk can get pretty corny sometimes. Amazingly, it seems to work on her.
The girls get ready for another attack from Petz, but Calaveras, reformed apparently, warns that Petz is no longer herself, seemingly possessed by the wand. But how to snatch it?
With bloody Bubble Spray of course. I can’t believe they’re still using this attack. They always resort of bloody Bubble Spray. Oh well.
Next up in the “combined powers” play is the Venus Love-Me Chain once more, which smacks the wand out of Petz’s hand.
Sailor Jupiter finishes up with a Sparkling Wide Pressure directly Petz, which knocks her on her ass.
Team work! Loved this play.
Petz is still pretty pissed off, even more so that they’re showing her pity. Before she can do more then wimper, however, Rubeus turns up, and everything goes to hell.
Rubeus apparently never believed Petz would win in the first place – he only needed to gather all the traitors and Senshi in a single place. Petz is shocked to realise that she was nothing but a pawn. Silly Petz, it was pretty obvious.
Rubeus activates the Dark Wand thing, and it goes a little haywire, expanding a “dimensional-crevice” as Rubeus calls it. There’s a lot of space-time, dimensional warping, sci-fi this season. I do like it, gives it a particular flavour.
So the wand was actually a bomb, of sorts. A black hole, in fact. The Senshi can barely hold on, and even Luna says that it’s impossible to seal the hole, so therefore it must be true, right?
Wrong, sayeth Petz! She’s suddenly reformed, somehow. I guess facing death is enough to motivate her to suggest that she use the remaining Dark Power in her body to destroy the wand inside of the dimensional crevice. What wonderful self-sacrifice.
Sadly, Petz is complete inefectual shit. So much for her redeeming martyrdom. Thankfully, even though Petz just tried to murder her, Calaveras saves her by whipping her older sister. Very Indiana Jones. Even powerless Koan and Berthier reach in for her.This isn’t a very powerful black hole so far.
Oh yeah, we need a man to turn up and tell Sailor Moon what to do, so Tuxedo Kamen appears (he really isn’t trying hard to save anyone) and tells the Senshi to combine their powers.
The plan is that the Senshi all jump into the whole and combine their powers to destroy the wand. The jumping goes rather smoothly. You’d have to pry me off that bridge with a crowbar.
Inside the dimensional tunnel (I have no idea why Luna and Artemis came along), the Senshi have a badass scene of combining their powers for a brand new attack – the generically named Sailor Planet Attack! They’ll be using this a bunch when they’re in a fix.
As a first time, it’s really rather exciting. Reminds me a lot of Sailor Teleport from season one.
The actual attack is not the most remarkable looking, despite the name. It’s not like Princess Serenity using the Ginzuishou against Beryl or anything, but it serves its purpose by destroying the wand.
So yeah, that bridge is fucked.
Sailor Moon uses the Ginzuishou to Refresh both Calaveras and Petz at once, so double the awkward nakedness.
The real thing to notice is that Chibi-Usa has been watching the entire time, including how Sailor Moon, Usagi, has the Ginzuishou in her compact. What’s Chibi-Usa going to do with this information…?
Rubeus has also been spying. Honestly, the Sailor Senshi really need lessons in keeping their shit on the down-low. Go and hide in a toilet before revealing sensitive powers!
So now Rubeus is in a bind. We’ll have to wait for next week to find out how he’ll use this information…
The episode ends with the news that, somehow, the Phantom Sisters have opened a cosmetics shop all by themselves.
They have no money.
No birth certificates, bank accounts, places of residence.
They don’t even have a goddamn surname,
Yet they opened a shop. Oh well. This may be one conceit too far, but it doesn’t stop the scene of the girls trying to flog make-up and bickering in a street vendor.
Petz has to warn Berthier not to dip into the product, just like drug dealers, and this sets the whole lot bickering. I guess they never followed on from that episode which promoted the idea that too much make-up was bad for you. Now it’s just fine again.
THE END. A good episode, bar a few gaping plot holes.
Episode Score: 4/5
Sailor Planet Attack: 3/5 (The charging up was cool, but the actual attack was a bit of a let down.)
Tuxedo Kamen Usefulness Score: 1/5 (He turned up, said obvious stuff, then left. Thanks, jerk.)