4:4 – Capture the Pegasus! The Amazons’ Trap
Alternative Title: You Make Umino Look Good
First Aired: 25th March 1995
The Amazon Trio have been severely criticised for having not yet captured Pegasus. Tigers-Eye sets out to seduce Naru, interferring with his relationship with Umino, while Hawks-Eye prepares a special cage with which he hopes to capture the flying horse.
How’s everyone doing?
Ok that’s enough of that.
I was waiting for the moment the formula of Sailor Moon SuperS would begin to wear a little… I just didn’t expect it so soon. Episode 4 is rather early on for things to feel a bit tired, but this episode does.
It opens fairly innocuously, there’s another discos from Satan’s bellybutton taking place in the Dead Moon Circus, and, once again, the Amazon Trio get chewed out by Zirconia in front of everyone because apparently she just hates fun.
Zirconia complains that they’ve failed to catch Pegasus three times now. Considering this is a season with 38 episodes in, I imagine there’s a lot more disappointment for her to come. Hawks-Eye decides that this moment, -this very moment-, is the time to play the Hubris Card. Even his colleagues to his left give him a “bro, are you fucking sure about this?” look as he begins to boast of their prowess, saying that they’ve just been pissing about before now.
Of course, he must realise that if they fail to capture the Pegasus immediately, the are going to look like idiots. Which, to be fair, isn’t so hard.
We go back to the bar with the Amazon Trio, and I’ll say up front that we mostly follow these jokers this episode, seeing things from their point of view. Which kinda sucks because they have no depth, aren’t as interesting as our main characters, and are also serial sexual offenders. Tigers-Eye announces in a lacklustre way who his next target it. He slides a photo to Hawks-Eye, and there’s a cool animation of him slamming his… whisky? down onto a picture of…
Huh. Well. We haven’t seen Naru for a while, have we? An entire season, in fact. This is in fact something of a cameo for her. I always like what she brought to the table in Sailor Moon, but, alas, the series has moved on. Like the appearance of Reika a couple of episodes ago, I worry how they’re going to use nostalgia.
I will say that these guys “targeting” someone we’ve gotten rather close to in the past is unsettling.
Tigers-Eye and Fish-Eye (who feels criminally underused by this point, I like the contrasting attitude he brings… until later in the series when he becomes deeply problematic) give Hawks-Eye some guff about his boasting, but Hawks-Eye, the cocky little shit, mentions a final tactic, but declines to outline what exactly it is. Dramatic suspense! Maybe!
Naru! She looks weird as SHIT. We have had this animator once before in Sailor Moon S if I recall correctly, although I’m not entirely sure what episode that was. I hate this animator. It’s not as clunky-horrible as some of the other episodes, but I dislike the character designs intensely. They all feel like different people, and there’s something about the faces which is a bit repellent. Worst thing is, this animator is used several times this series, much more than in S.
Naru is waiting for Umino for a date. Enter the pervert.
I actually think his arrogance is working for me here, in that all this preening is meant to be so disgusting, but we’re rewarded with that ego being repeatedly burst this episode.
Umino is late because he’s a total fuck-up, and Naru begins to berate what she thinks is her boyfriend, only it’s Tigers-Eye being goddman creepy. He turns this into a line, and she actually appears taken with him? It’s gross. Now this doesn’t make sense because the next thing he does is lays his fucking hand on her shoulder and she RIGHTLY looks at it like it’s a slug. Ladies, I’m really sorry about guys and how this shit happens daily. This must be tiresome at the very best, and threatening every other time.
Anyway, Naru spots Umino and uses it as an excuse to get the fuck away from the creepy guy.
Tigers-Eye’s reaction of “What is this RUDE AND UGLY THING?” is great, and can only be beaten by the face he makes when he realises who he’s lost out to. Oh Umino, you’re existence has been leading up to this point, so that I may revel in the faces of despair of this oily piece of crap.
Oh ok one more.
When the scene cuts back to Hawks-Eye and Fish-Eye doing a spit take at this news, I crack up. Now THIS I like. I’m laughing hard at the humiliation, since it’s so deserved. The smash-cut is great comedic timing too.
This is when Hawks-Eye reveals his final tactic, showing off, really. It’s a cage. An electrified cage. Yeah this isn’t going to work, Hawks-Eye… for one thing, these can’t even keep raptors in, let alone a mythical beast. So the new plan is to use Naru as bait for Pegasus instead, since Tigers-Eye assumes she can’t have a beautiful dream after dating Umino. That’s fighting words, Tiger-Butt.
Stalking scene! Creepy!
Learning that Naru wants to be a nurse, Tigers-Eye’s seduction tactic is… initially cut short, as Naru doesn’t recognise him at all, causing him to pulsate in parallaxes of rage. Which is, again, hilarious. SUFFER, ASS-HAT. By and by, he gets around to his actual tactic, which is feigning a terminal illness to guilt Naru into pretending she’s his girlfriend. Wow that’s disturbing. Oh Naru, just keep walking. No Naru, NO, STOP. Well shit, she’s locked in, now.
Hey, wasn’t this show called Sailor Moon or something? Where the hell is she…?
Ah. Despite not having hung out with them for about a year, Naru decides that the people to confide her problems to is this group of people clearly messing around with the occult. Weeeeeell you gotta keep the plot moving along I suppose. Looking at it now, this isn’t my Naru. There’s nothing here that really feels definitive to her character. In terms of a cameo, this is something of a waste, which is at least better than what Umino gets here. It’s not just that she looks weird with this animator, it’s that the episode hasn’t followed her arc. It’s following the Amazon Trio as they attempt to seduce her through lies, then attack her. Which doesn’t feel very great.
Also the Senshi have not much to add here. They’re all shocked when Naru reveals that she has, in fact, agreed to date the dying creep for the 3 months it takes to shuffle off his mortal coil. Chibi-Usa uses her first line of the episode to find the arrangement.. romantic…? Oh dear. Rei has to explain to Naru slowly, as if to an idiot, that love and sympathy are two different things. Aiyaya. This is the light moral we’re getting out of this episode? I guess it might be useful?
Also, this animator can’t draw Chibi-Usa at all. Or the cats. It’s atrocious.
Naru now has to tell Umino the situation. As bone-headed as it sounds. Umino tells her that he loves Naru’s caring side, even if it means she’s going to have to hump some dying dude, and runs off crying. Aww poor Umino. I’m sure he’ll handle this in a adult and responsible way.
Nope he goes to McDonalds and drinks 15 milkshakes. Damn straight, that’s how I get over my emotional turmoil.
Naru goes to see Tigers-Eye, who is acting distinctly un-terminal. It’s super creepy. It’s late out, it’s dark, they’re alone, the music is creepy, his attitude is giving me shivers, the threat is real, and maybe a bit to close to reality? Naru tells Tigers-Eye she can’t do this after all, because it’s fucking weird. and this is where shit takes a left turn into the toilet bowl.
Tigers-Eye says he doesn’t care, that he just wants a moment of fun, that Naru should just focus on feeling good, then he starts grabbing her and rubbing her chin. Oh man, this is such a goddamn sexual assault scene. They make this such an overarching theme in Sailor Moon SuperS that I think it loses its impact. If they wanted to tackle this issue, it may have made for a decent one or two after-school specials, but there’s half a season of this stuff, and seeing Naru being coerced into the suggestion of… you know… it’s just deeply unpleasant. I really don’t want to watch Sailor Moon to be repulsed.
That’s why I have Neon Genesis Evangelion of course.
Either way, Tigers-Eye goes for a kiss (FUCKIN’ EW) but Naru pushes him so hard that he lands 5 feet away on his butt. It’s gratifying.
Tigers-Eye is totally butt-hurt, saying that he didn’t care about Naru anyway, he just wanted to use her as bait. What a total manbaby. Anyway, this is why you shouldn’t meet strange men at night in the park, because they’ll transform and try to look inside your beautiful dream. This is, what, the 30th time Naru has been attacked? And also the last time! Poor girl, going out like this.
Usagi and Chibi-Usa are led to the park by Luna (who was keeping an eye on Naru because apparently she has no sense of personal safety), and the girls transform for battle.
Today’s Remless is Otedamako, who immediately begins saying “Hai Hai Hai, Hai Hai Hai“. Weeeeeell that’s not going to get old, is it?
Her modus operendi is rather funny. She forces Super Sailor Moon and Super Sailor Chibi-Moon to juggle, and when they inevitably drop the balls, they explode. Not the most efficient method of attack maybe, but memorable.
Next is BALLS OF FIRE. That makes much more sense.
Chibi-Moon remembers the one thing she can do in battle and uses Twinkle Yell to call Pegasus. Which is precisely what Tigers-Eye wanted, of course.
Sailor Moon takes his apperance as a chance to try and free Naru, but this is of course what Tigers-Eye had in mind all along. The cage springs up and the girls start yelling at Pegasus for being a fucking idiot for continuing to fly towards a large cage, but we get a crash course in Pegasus-metaphysics, as it turns out that whatever he is in this form does not interact with matter. Maybe he’s made out of neutrinos? In which case how could he be a form that one could see…? WHY AM I TRYING TO IMPOSE LOGIC ONTO THIS?
Yes, Pegasus flies straight through the cage and electric trap, and Tigers-Eye, deciding he wants ZERO advantages, throws his whip at the cage, freeing the Senshi. Well that was stupid wasn’t it? Also note the absence of the other Senshi at this point. I miss them. They’ve had nothing to do this season yet. I got enough of that in Sailor Moon Crystal…
The Remless begins to throw knives when she’s hit with oh goddamn it it’s Tuxedo Kamen isn’t it? I like Otedamko’s reaction to getting hit with flowers is to blush. It was rather funny.
I have no idea why Tuxed Kamen is here. The Remless is immediately killed anyway, it’s like they just wanted to throw him in here just to make sure we know he’s still around. Ahh well. Moon Gorgeous Meditation still looks fantastic, always a pleasure to see a Remless bite the bullet with it.
Naru wakes up in time to see Pegasus… which is never brought up again. She just sees weird shit and ignores it. You know, like that time she totally realised that Usagi was Sailor Moon?
The conclusion focuses on Naru and Umino, as it had to, but it feels weird because we spent so much time with Tigers-Eye today. As a book-end to a narrative, it doesn’t make sense. At the very least I got a huge nostalgia blast because the music they use is the one that a lot of the early episodes ended with, included the very first one. It’s a charming little “oh well isn’t this funny?” kind og tune, and it always makes me smile.
Naru is seeing Umino on his sickbed after drinking all those milkshakes, and the episode ends with her offering Umino a sixteenth, with him performing The Scream. It’s very sudden and tacked on as it happens, and the credits come abruptly. Feels a bit odd.
All in all, not the strongest episode. I laughed hard a couple of times as Tigers-Eye’s misfortune, but it honestly wasn’t worth it to have to watch our dear Naru get creeped upon. I know this is an important issue that needs to be addressed even with young women, but there’s little entertainment or education to be had in watching this stuff so repeatedly. So I’m tried of the Amazon Trio formula already, even if I find them entertaining and funny… when they’re not being rapey, that is.
Episode Score: 3/5 – Really should be a two… but seeing Hawks-Eye and Fish-Eye do a spit-take at Tigers-Eye wiping out was beautiful
Monster Score: 3/5 – Hai hai hai! Otedamako made me laugh once. She was fine
Final Thought: Umino can’t feel so good about his relationship if he got briefly dumped for a dying sleazeball, can he?
NEXT TIME: We meet someone a hell of a lot more compatible with Mamoru than Usagi, and wonder why Mamoru and Usagi are even a thing at all.