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Act.19 – TIME WARP – SAILOR PLUTO

First Aired: 4th April 2015

Sailor Moon Crystal - Space Time door

Chibi-Usa reveals that she is from Crystal Tokyo in the 30th Century. After long thought, she decides to take Sailor Moon, Sailor Venus and Tuxedo Kamen to the future, using her Space Time Key. Guarding the gateway between times is a solitary Sailor Senshi standing guard, but she may not be an ally…

I’m getting that major ambivalence from Sailor Moon Crystal again.

This is an exciting episode. Some really great events take place that move the plot, and the overall lore, quite a ways a head. We get a new major character, an new major environment, and then another new major environment, and then another two major characters. That’s some pretty tasty stuff right there. Crystal Tokyo, which is one of my favourite fictional city concepts, gets its due, and it’s dark, moody and threatening.

On the other hand… I get the feeling that everything good about this episode is down to the source material. The manga hits these plot points, and Sailor Moon Crystal covers them faithfully. Everything else… the interpretation, the animation, the music, the performances even… it’s not up to the standard you would expect. I definitely feel as though the quality in the previous 2 episodes had me hopeful for a better story arc than the last. Here, they’ve slipped again into the old complaints. Which is a real shame, because I think this could have been amazing.

"WHAT?"

Usagi continues to display questionable characterisation. While her paranoia over Chibi-Usa might be justifiable as an attempt to make her a realistic character, the fact remains that she comes off as petty, bitter and jealous, over a defenceless girl clearly suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. When Sailor Moon, and to that extent Venus and Artemis, sees Chibi-Usa breaking down in tears and begging for help, their first instinct isn’t to be supportive, isn’t to display compassion, but to remain accusatory.

If the attempt was to make these characters more realistic, then I feel they’ve failed. Their behaviour is perplexing to me. It seems almost on the verge of sociopathic. The only one who displays any empathy is Mamoru.

Speaking of which, there was one scene in particular which had me completely confused and a little repelled. Suffice it to say that there’s an uneasy exploration of the Electra Complex.

Sailor Moon Crystal - Chibi-Usa hugs Pluto

In this episode there’s also the introduction of strange comedic reaction shots. They feel entirely out of place, more so that they’ve bordered these shots in a rather dated style. They’re so out of kilter with the aesthetic style of the 18 episodes before this one that it jerked me completely out of the episode. They’re never appropriate in context, sometimes thrown in during remarkable serious and intense scenes. If they were to illicit a laugh, well they got a cocked eyebrow instead.

Sailor Moon Crystal - Weird reaction

These shots definitely feel like an attempt to capture some kind of jovial humour from the 1990’s adaptation of the show… and I must say that not even the original adaptation would have used these shots, as random and cheap as they feel. The artwork in the rest of the episode is not fantastic either. As usual, the action is abysmal, there are some horrid moments of static shots with flashing backgrounds which made a previous episode of Sailor Moon Crystal one of the worst yet. The design of certain new sets is pretty nice, and there were some genuinely good shots, but it comes and goes.

And, finally, Sailor Pluto. She’s more severe, more violent than what we’ve seen from this character before. She also has a particularly ugly colour scheme that makes it hard to take her entirely seriously. She is also given one of the worst animations this anime has seen yet. As an introduction to a character I loved… well… I’ve seen it done better before I’m afraid.

 


 

 

The spoiler section begins here.

Don’t scroll down if you don’t want to get a blow-by-blow analysis!

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Still here? Glad you could join me.

Before we start, I want to issue a minor trigger warning. I really didn’t think I’d have to, and I really didn’t want to discuss… whatever it is that I bring up, but it would be impossible for me to review this episode without talking about my own experience watching it, which was slightly icky.

So we’ve had the reveal that Chibi-Usa is from the future. The opening is of her completely breaking down, revealing an attack on 30th Century Tokyo. Keep in mind she’s a small crying child who has seen a city of people die all around her – because Venus and Artemis have zero sympathy, pushing her for information when she’s clearly having an emotional breakdown. It’s… unpleasant to watch, actually. All I wanted to do was to give her a hug.

gdfg

Clearly a prime target for interrogation right now

Sailor Moon’s instinctual reaction is not one of pity or sympathy… it’s that really rather uncomfortable jealousy. If  you think I’m being overly critical about this, I feel that an upcoming scene between these three really sum up my disquiet over this subplot.

It doesn't even seem to cross her mind to show any sympathy towards her at first... but thankfully she seems to try and be nice by the end of the scene...

It doesn’t even seem to cross her mind to show any sympathy towards her at first… but thankfully she seems to try and be nice by the end of the scene…

Chibi-Usa announces that she’s going to stay at Mamoru’s place, which is when we get the first of several weird insert shots… as below. Looks like the back of a 1990s VHS tape.

This feels like nothing I've seen before in this anime. It happens so suddenly, so out of context. Just does not work.

This feels like nothing I’ve seen before in this anime. It happens so suddenly, so out of context. Just does not work.

Chibi-Usa is in Mamoru’s bed, wearing his shirt. So here begins my creep-out factor. Usagi is about to be insanely jealous of Chibi-Usa and accuse her boyfriend of being… attracted to an 8 year old girl. I feel like a need a shower just from writing that sentence. I feel as though the animators were looking to… I don’t know… give some level of credence to Usagi’s jealousy? The thing to do here would have been to play it down, have Usagi overcome them with kindness. Instead, they go the opposite way and throw in incredibly suggestive shots that make me want to die.

Do I think the animators were trying to suggest anything… untoward here? No of course not. But it was still a choice that someone made to include this, which I find baffling. I am not at all suggesting the animators included this actively thinking gross thoughts, and I really would rather avoid this whole topic altogether… but I find this to be a legitimately terrible scene.

YES I FELT UNCOMFORTABLE WITH THIS SHOT

YES I FELT UNCOMFORTABLE WITH THIS SHOT. WHO DREW THIS?

This might have been innocent if it weren’t for the context of what’s about to happen: Usagi accusing Mamoru of being a paedophile.

Actual dialogue;

Mamoru: “She’s in elementary school!

Usagi: “But she’s still a woman!

I mean, WOW. This is incredibly poorly handled. It was uncomfortable and weird in the manga. In this adaptation they’ve been able to make it even more awkward. I think, I think, they were hoping to play this off as comedic, hence why they use that stupid freeze-frame reaction shot, not once but twice in this scene, but the effect is pure absurdity. This is embarrassing.

Yeah, this is the face you make when your girlfriend has just accused you of being attracted to a young child

Yeah, this is the face you make when your girlfriend has just accused you of being attracted to a young child

Usagi at least realises she’s being an absolute lunatic. I like that she feels guilty about her insecurities. It doesn’t mitigate how messed up I think this all is, though. There’s this one really interesting shot here which not only looked good, but actually had me wondering what the meaning was… in a good way this time. Mamoru is looking at Usagi’s back and thinking that he’s going to lose her (because she’s insane), and we get this cool “digital interference” effect. Wasn’t sure exactly if there was something more to this shot, but that’s how I took it anyway.

Creative stuff like this, I would embrace. More please!

He sees her as "breaking up". Really cool lens effect too

He sees her as “breaking up”. Really cool lens effect too. It felt as out of place as the goofy reaction shots, but this time in a good way

He gets around her insecurities physically. And I really do mean that. The first shot is atrocious, this freeze frame with a flashing background that looks like it’d been ripped from a Powerpoint presentation.

From an interesting shot into a lazy animation. They just keep me on my toes

From an interesting shot into a lazy animation. They just keep me on my toes

However, the scene ends rather beautifully. Usagi puts aside her paranoia (thank god) and realises that Mamoru is, in fact, in love with her (you’d think the whole reincarnation, lovers from a different life time would have done that), and there’s a really romantic shot.

Now, in this scene in the manga, Mamoru and Usagi rolled around on the floor, and then she stayed the night again. There was a suggestion that they had, in fact, had intimacies, although that may have been me reading into things again. They don’t shy away from this in this anime adaptation, and, yeah, there’s a suggestion that Mamoru and Usagi may have just elevated their relationship.

Beautiful shot!

Beautiful shot!

Don’t believe me? Again, the animators are throwing in shots here that are suggestive. Read into it what you will.

Well that's one way to convince your girlfriend that you do actually love her

Well that’s one way to convince your girlfriend that you do actually love her

And the next morning…

Hey, completely fine with this. Rare that you see characters in anime with sexual agency. This interaction humanised and normalised Usagi way more than her petty fears over Chibi-Usa

Hey, completely fine with this. Rare that you see characters in anime with sexual agency. This interaction humanised and normalised Usagi way more than her petty fears over Chibi-Usa

I liked that Chibi-Usa had strengthened her resolve her. She asks Usagi and Mamoru to come to the future with her, and it appears as though Usagi is in a rather good mood. Now seemingly convinced that Mamoru isn’t spending undue attention on a young girl, she’s a lot nicer.

The journey to the future is actually rather cool. A bit more sci-fi than usual, with spinning clocks and genuinely cool animation effects as the gang get thrown forward in time.

"Next time let's dance further away from the speakers." "WHAT?"

“Next time let’s dance further away from the speakers.”
“WHAT?”

I like how they’re portraying the Space Time Corridor. Very similar to the original adaptation, but that’s no bad thing when it looks this mysterious. Again, a couple of well-composed shots really took my by surprise. I also have a feeling I know what’s coming up…

"Any of you guys see a map? What about a visitors' kiosk?"

“Any of you guys see a map? What about a visitors’ kiosk?”

Sailor Pluto’s appearance is pretty damn cool actually. The shot is… really cheesy, but she’s super fierce, not prepared to take any shit, and knowingly attacks Sailor Moon. I dug this. She’s such a consummate guardian that, even though she knows it’s Sailor Moon, she’ll still defend the gate. Her Death Scream attack was… completely utterly shite, but it’s brilliant that she’s at least demonstrating her difference from the other Senshi.

This marks the beginning to the expansion of the Senshi lore, and it’s pretty cool here.

This Pluto looks as though she could beat you to death. And yes, I absolutely abhor the shade of pink they used for her earrings.

This Pluto looks as though she could beat you to death. And yes, I absolutely abhor the shade of pink they used for her earrings. The keys at her hips is darned cool though

Chibi-Usa arrives and convinces Pluto not to murder all of them. I didn’t really feel the level of connection that the manga ends up suggesting between them… one shot in particular looked incredibly weird. You “think” that Pluto “might” attack Chibi-Usa, and turns it into a hug. This doesn’t work, it looks very very strange. It may have worked in the manga, but this is an anime adaptation. This is why you cannot just lift shots from the page. Be creative. Think of a way this can work on screen.

"ATTACK HUUUUUG"

“ATTACK HUUUUUG”

The scene ends with Sailor Moon finding out that Chibi-Usa is, in fact, a Princess. Chibi-Usa is really sweet here, in a way that Sailor Moon has never been with her so far. She takes her hand, a little haughtily it seems, but there’s affection in there too. Just seems so strange to me that they wouldn’t have moments of Sailor Moon thawing out. She’s just remained… unlikeable as a protagonist in this arc. It’s a real shame.

"I just have to keep you alive until you give birth to me, then it's game on."

“I just have to keep you alive until you give birth to me, then it’s game on.”

Crystal Tokyo… I’ll admit that I prefer the original anime’s take on this (naturally) but this isn’t bad at al. They captured this post-apocalyptic disaster zone. It feels massively oppressive and deadened. The tone is precisely what I wanted… except for the music, which still kinda sucks. This could have been so much more emotional with a sweeping string score, and a few more lingering shots of just the empty city.

"...and that's the supermarket, and that's the swimming pool, and over there where that evil black crystal thing, that used to be a pet store, and that's the library..."

“…and that’s the supermarket, and that’s the swimming pool, and over there where that evil black crystal thing, that used to be a pet store, and that’s the library…”

Oh, they’ve also kept the… dessicated dead bodies that Naoko Takeuchi loves to draw. They really are going dark here… and yet it just doesn’t feel as cold and haunted as the original anime. I think it’s the colour scheme. The browns and greens just aren’t as magical.

This dude was clearly killed just after he visited Subway

This dude was clearly killed just after he visited Subway. “Nooo not before I taste my foot-long meatball marinara!”

It’s pretty cool seeing the gang walking through Crystal Tokyo… I just wish they could have remained walking through this dead city. It was the most interesting part of the episode. Sadly, they’re attacked by the “Boule Brothers”, and things get pretty terrible.

I know this anime isn’t good at the action, but they also throw in inexplicable dialogue here. Everything these guys do is broken up with meaningless exposition about covalent bonds… what’s the point? It’s just so… unentertaining.

Was not expecting Chiral and Archiral to give me a chemistry lesson

Was not expecting Chiral and Archiral to give me a chemistry lesson

Here’s a bug bear of mine – people frozen in glass, or ice, or crystal, or goop, who are still able to blink and talk and cry. Either your’re in a solid or you’re not. There’s really nothing to talk about here, this feels so perfunctory.

This seems like an action-packed episode. Let's be frozen for 4 minutes, that'll liven things up.

This seems like an action-packed episode. Let’s be frozen for 4 minutes, that’ll liven things up.

It is interesting that Tuxedo Kamen and Sailor Venus are the ones who kill Chiral and Archiral. Sailor Moon’s Moon Princess Halation doesn’t seem to work, but they don’t dwell on it long enough for it to become an issue. Can’t recall Tuxedo Kamen ever defeating anything by his own hands. I like that he’s more involved here.

The way they break out of the crystal, incidentally, is a mysterious voice ordering Tuxedo Kamen to “pray”, which seems less of a useful instruction and more of a bitter epithet. This whole mystery is wrapped up in about 1 minute, so it’s not nearly as drawn out as the original anime.

I actually thought this was an awesome shot. Really bloody stuff.

I actually thought this was an awesome shot. Really bloody stuff.

So here she is… Neo Queen Serenity! Very cool. I love the detailing on the table-top itself. She’s just as mysterious in her crystal cage as you would want. It’s a great moment, once again let down by the lacklustre score. It’s obvious who she is by this point, of course, but the episode wraps up on the reveal of a couple of other characters…

"Next time I get frozen in crystal, remind me to grab a pillow first"

“Next time I get frozen in crystal, remind me to grab a pillow first”

Diana! She’s only a -little- creepy with those eyes. Great that she’s introduced here. Was always a bit of a shame that she got cut out of Sailor Moon R. Not that she’s particularly interesting of course… but she’s cute as heck.

She's like really, really, really small. AND ADORBZ.

She’s like really, really, really small. AND ADORBZ.

And King Endymion. I… don’t really dig his design. He just looks like Mamoru in white clothes… there was something really ethereal about the King Endymion in the original anime. They made him look older, wiser, like an actual father and king. Crystal And Endymion looks like a guy going to his senior prom.

"God I used to dress like an idiot, didn't I?" *adjusts eye mask*

“God I used to dress like an idiot, didn’t I?” *adjusts eye mask*


 

And there you have it. A problematic episode, not without moments that were *ok*, but gosh, I felt awkward reviewing this one. I don’t even know who the target audience is for this anymore! I really hope this picks up, but I already know from the manga that I don’t particularly like the Black Moon story. I’m just such a negative nelly…

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10 Comments »

  1. My main question was how Chibiusa was able to jump onto and off of Usagi’s head when everyone was infront of the time door.

  2. Pluto’s earrings have been changed to red as per your screencap. It was only pink in the trailer/character design art.

    • You’re completely right. It must have been expectation bias, I was so ready to see that horrid shade of pink that I just didn’t realise it wasn’t there. Very strange…

  3. Spot on.

    I actually enjoyed the episode but you’re right, for all intents and purposes, what I loved about it was the source material as opposed to the production.

    I know lots of people have creamed their pants about these new “humour captions” while it doesn’t bother me per se it does feel like someones cut an paste a reaction. Yeah it’s kind of cute but 18 eps in it’s just odd. Was it necessary? Couldn’t they have kept it as is without the goofy border? I don’t mind either way but feels a little cheap

    The paedo thing, I’m over it, weird incesty paedo shit happens all the time in anime, do I want Sailor Moon Crystal portrayed this way? Preferably not, but I’ve always found the triangle issue weird regardless of the medium, so I wasn’t too bothered, well.. I say that… I wish Usagi would make up her fucking mind, she gets over it and starts to be friendly to Chibi-Usa then an episode later she’s back to Fatal Attraction-ing her future daughters ass again, Sagz if you can’t trust your man with a 6 yr old you are fucked up in the head, I know you don’t know she’s your future daughter yet but Chibi-Usa knows who Mamoru is in relation to her, she’s hardly shooting ping pong Luna-P’s out of her pre-pubescent vagina to beckon her dad to bed.. but what’s more fucked up is you expect him to fall for it. Chillax

    So ok, that bothered me more than I realise in hindsight.

    As a hater of children in general Minako and Artemis are bosses for not giving a shit.

    Pluto’s appearance I thought was done great, her seiyuu is fab and they fixed the earrings thank the stars. I’m torn about Dead Scream, had she not said the attack name she would’ve remained ruthless and bad ass, by shouting the name she’s probably gone and pissed off a load of fans who are used to and prefer (like myself) the OG version, having said that it was nice to see a different variation even if it wasn’t as flashy. Mind you the Chibi-Usa bits with her gave me small feels, and I love Crystal Tokyo so dystopian, but really want to see it all nice and shiny so they best show a revival of some sort.

    Um action sequence / any black moon interaction this ep – purely meh apart from the Venus Tux double team and Boule Brothers death faces which were nice. Pissed off King Endymion isn’t head to toe in Lavender, but DIana was chou kawaii!

    Thanks again Vincent ^_^ v

    • Great breakdown. The cutesy reactions with boarders… if this was this type of anime, if they had set a precedent, then yeah it would have been fine, but as you say, it’s late in the show to be bringing up aesthetic features that are in no way compatible with the mood, sentiment or content. We see a dead body full on in this episode for comparison!

      I experimented with just not caring about the “weird incesty paedo shit”, preferring to never bring it up ever again… but then I found I just couldn’t let this one slip. The original adaptation realised how stupid this whole thing was and actually -adapted- it so it didn’t ick people out the world over.

      I did like Pluto, but there’s something still off about her colour scheme for me… and yeah, after seeing those beautiful attack sequences from the Outer Senshi in Sailor Moon S, this Dead Scream is an utter joke.

      I really liked Diana in the manga of the Black Moon arc, so I’m assuming we’ll see a bunch more of her kawaii factor coming into play. And yeah, Endymion looked better in lavender, which is something I’d never thought I’d say. Plus if I were a resident of Crystal Tokyo I’d wonder why my king was this beautiful waif of a teenage boy. Give me beefy lavender ineffectual King Endymion any day.

      Always a pleasure to read your analysis, Darren!

  4. Ok, ok…loooooot of stuff to comment this time and as always..sounds fun!:D
    Really..I am not sure I want to face up to the whole Usagi-Chibiusa relationship again but..I mean, why not? Ok. First. I am pretty sure in real life everyone has its own attitude towards children. Somebody loves them, somebody can’t even stand them…somebody is always iperprotective and somebody else just acts with indifference or doesn’t feel at ease to deal with them. I just think I am not the kind of person that sees a totally unknown -armed-with-a-gun-fall-off-the-sky-6-year-old-girl (or 5…even 4…whatever, not a newborn!) break into others life and starts loving her unconditionally just because she is a child. I mean…in a normal world why should it be so?Til the half of the episode Chibiusa is just a stranger. An annoying one. And I do really appreciate the profile Crystal has traced so far because in the original anime that little bitch was almost unbearable and irritating. She doesn’t open up with Usagi, Minako or even Mamoru, and I’m not buying the story she hides behind “I was scared you wouldn’t have believed me if I told you the truth!”. She might be scared inside, no doubt about that, but the guys just do not know anything about her. Moreover she looks pretty sly and calculating (remember she tries to steal the most precious thing Usagi has?!), so no reason at all to trust her or feel any simpathy at this point.
    Again. I totally stand at Usagi side. I can feel her insecurity and her disappointment (all her friends eve been abducted and maybe the cause is…Chibiusa!!). I also can understand a (little) dose of jealousy, just because she wouldn’t be the first woman in the world to feel it in a situation like this, even when from the outside looks so odd. I don’t think there’s a rational explanation for that behavior…it just happens, sometimes. And Usagi knows there’s something maybe wrong in it. I truly loved her confession to Mamo about that. Feels so true and candid, and that’s what Usagi is after all.
    I really need to override the Elektra Complex scene. It was awful under every point of view, especially the kid’s face that just evoked some very bad bad thoughts. Or maybe just an ecchi scene. Whatever. They NEED to redraw this all. And redraw it nice.
    Next..the “love scene”. As always…too static…except for the silhouette and petals frame, that was so lovely! I didn’t like at all the last frame. It looks like Mamo-chan slipped on the carpet and fell asleep over her beloved one. Too bad. The manga drawing was so intense you could feel the warmth of their hug and the love happening that night between them. I’ve been waiting for this animated scene for so long I just expect perfection (ok, that’s impossible from Crystal, I know)!

    I will skip pluto appearance because I have to admit I’m not really into her character, even if from these first scenes she looks more badass and so interesting to me…I agree the hug with Chibiusa wasn’t good at all…no true phatos or real emotion conveyed to the viewer in my op.

    I cannot instead skip the most awful detail of the episode (maybe of the whole series so far) and believe me when I say I cannot find a conceivable reason for that. We have just been teleported into the 30th century and everything looks cool (or better…terribly cool) and what…the dead people all around are DRESSED LIKE an episode of Downton Abbey?!Wtf?? Are we serious here? Because the destroyed landscape looks so futuristic and I’m totally ok with that but why should people dress like medieval times in an hypermodern future?!Hope I won’t have to see that again…gimme more burnt bodies instead, so I don’t have to care about their old fashioned designer…C’mon…

    Last but not least ( and I am talking on behalf of my friend and colleague here too). God of the future bless the only well dressed guy in Crystal Tokyo: King Endymion looks so freaking handsome and elegant in the white suit. I just fell totally in love with him. For the first time, he does look like a (still) young attractive King and not like a grandpa with a stick support to stand up. I always deeply hated that lavender that had reached his hair too. It made him look just old and…damn stupid. Who the hell would wear a full lavender suit (not considering Diana)?Not even medieval-dressed-future-people or a color blind, I guess. The celestial appearance of the renewed Endymion alone, for me, saves it all. :)

    • Entertaining post as ever!

      My main problem with Usagi’s relationship with Chibi-Usa in Crystal is not that she has these feelings of insecurity (like you I actually loved her coming clean about them), but just in the cold resentful way she deals with them.

      I try not to compare Crystal to the original adaptation too much, but…

      I think the writers realised that it was uncomfortable watching the protagonist of this series repeatedly looking horrified and afraid of a girl who is, all mystery aside, clearly sold as an entirely sympathetic character.

      Realism is great, I love dealing with the depths of the human condition, that’s why I loved Death Parade so much, I just don’t think the Crystal has managed the intricate task of balancing Usagi’s flaws with the viewer actually liking her.

      The original anime, recognising the limitations of their relationship in the manga, dealt with this by having Mamoru break up with Chibi-Usa. This justifies Usagi’s resentment towards Chibi-Usa. The further difference is that, there, she suppresses her resentment to be a genuinely kick-ass defender of Chibi-Usa.

      They also knew to tone the Jungian stuff waaaaaay down.

      The original adaptation isn’t perfect by any means. It simplifies everything for its target demographic, but at the same time it doesn’t treat them like idiots. With Crystal, I get the impression that the writers were way out of their depth in tackling such a strange, sensitive situation. They simply want to translate was was on the page to the screen without the necessary adjustments that would make it compelling viewing.

      Still, I applaud them for trying something so interesting, even if I enjoy the story far less as a result. And I love that fact that it IS connecting with people.

      I will be honest, I was so focussed on the horrid corpse-faces of the inhabitants of Crystal Tokyo that I never paid too much attention to their clothes… but your’re absolutely right. I always liked what they did in Another Story with people from the 30th Century: they just made them look like funky disgruntled goths.

      As for you final point, I will actively argue upon. I -love- King Endymion’s lavender look, which I didn’t realise until his style was brought into question right now. I think it ages him enough to look like an actual king, makes him look the 1000 years he’s meant to be. It gives him the look of a ghost in a way, fitting for a hologram, and adds to this sense that he knows a huge amount that he’s unwilling to reveal. I also didn’t think he looked old, I thought he looked ageless, timeless.

      Yes, all from a colour. Man I’m really reaching here…

      At the very least I’m fine with a white suit, but really wish they had aged Mamoru maybe 4 or 5 years to give the impression that he’s experienced. He doesn’t have that calm wisdom I hoped he’d have… he just looks like inverse-Tuxedo Kamen.

      Cheers for the long-ass comments, these always brighten my day. Nothing like a discussion to help you make sense of your own opinions on something!

      -Vincent

  5. While for the most part this one was simply ‘okay’ to me, I have to admit I LOVED the humor.

    Not the kitschy bordered reaction shots, those felt really out-of-place. No, the scene with Usagi chasing Chibs around the Space Time Corridor while they bickered and Pluto was in the middle of it all with that excellent, long-suffering -_-;; “surrounded by idiots” expression. It was the first time an episode of SMC got a genuine belly laugh out of me since Usagi wormed her way into Mako’s heart way back in Ep 5.

    Not really feeling Dead Scream here. I have to admit, I’ll be the first to bitch and whine about stock animations, but Sailor Pluto’s quiet, intense, “Deddo…SUKURIMU” from the 90s anime never failed to be chilling, effective, and SO very cool. Plus, I admit, I like the Outer Senshi’s ringed balls of destruction more than those weird purple…soul-flames?…Crystal Pluto made appear on everyone.

    Still, if I’m reading the news right (and not just with my HOPEFUL GOGGLES on) we might be getting the show renewed for a second season, so they hopefully have that much longer to do better now.

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