This season makes a turning point in the Sailor Moon story. The Sailor Senshi are confronted by a new enemy, the Death Busters. Rei had a premonition that this enemy would rule the world in an era called the Silence. To do this, the Death Busters need to find the three Talismans that would summon the Holy Grail. However, two mysterious Sailor Senshi, Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune, plan to find the Talismans before them... but without Sailor Moon's help.
It always seems that the longer a series goes on that it almost inevitably gets worse. That can pretty much be said for Sailor Moon S, the third season of the franchise. While it is not a bad series (far from it), I found that it was the most difficult of the three I have seen so far to watch.
It has always been a peeve of mine when a story develops to a point and then mystically finds itself reverting back. Sailor Moon S suffers from the introduction of some pretty unlikable characters plus the reintroduction of an annoying one. The later is Chibi-Usa, the future daughter of Usagi and Mamoru who pointlessly returns from the future, apparently to just become a pest. The progress made in the relationship between Usagi and Chibi-Usa apparently is meaningless as we are again treated to constant arguing and disrespect shown to her "mother". Honestly the whole time I just wanted Usagi to take her over her knee and throttle her back to the future. Even more inexplicable is Chibi Usa's constant interference in Usagi's and Mamoru's relationship. I mean she does realize if they aren’t together she won’t be born... right?
The other new characters are the introduction of Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune. A pair of completely unlikeable, cruel, and arrogant girls who never do answer for their own crimes as they ruthlessly pursue their own goals. Their rude and despicable attitude towards Usagi and the other guardian senshi despite being saved by them multiple times made them, for me at least, difficult to like.
For the most part these are my early impressions, and made it hard to get through the series until it starts to reach its climax. Chibi-Usa does become less annoying and she really isn’t in the series as much as it appeared she was going to be by the end. Though my dislike for Uranus and Neptune remained until the end. The story is pretty good but really not as strong as the first two series. The motivations of the villains don’t feel as defined as in previous seasons and the plot really feels repetitive for almost three quarters of the show. The weaknesses of the first two series remain, though the action is a little better. Mostly because of the addition of the new warriors the numbers of combinations increase which makes the battles a little more diverse. Though they are still pretty boring. I also felt that the Inner Senshi characters that are really important took too much of a backseat to the unlikable Outer Senshi. While each girl does have a couple episodes devoted to them it does feel like they have been mostly neglected. Also the romance elements were almost nonexistent in this series, which was a major disappointment for me. Despite all these things, the ending arc is very well done and I did enjoy the whole Sailor Saturn/Mistress 9 part of the story.
The art is probably the best it has been up to this point. Though there are a number of issues I had with the animation. Mostly this has to do with the really silly and overly long cut scenes, the biggest offender being Usagi's use of her special attack. Really was all that dancing around and spins necessary? Also the music really suffers here as well with the introduction of some of the corniest anime music I have ever heard. Now when the sailors transform we get treated to individual songs for each girl. I wasn’t sure whether I should laugh or cry when listening to it.
Overall though I still did end up liking this series, and it is particularly saved by the last arc involving Sailor Saturn. It has a number of flaws but it is still the Sailor Moon I know and love. It seems to know when you are really getting annoyed or frustrated with something and stops in time before you want to turn it off. Fans of the first two seasons will still enjoy this but you will probably be a little let down, particularly on the romance side, like I was. read more
Ou, I was a teenager when I started to watch and be a fan of this anime. We were a group of fans which imagined that we are SailorMoon or SailorMars and so. We watched these episodes and cried with characters etc. That was real fun.
Now I think this is one of the precious animes I have ever seen because it is funny un childish in its sort kind of way, it is romantic and a little bit nude but isn't too pervert to show to children, it shows different kind of situations that could happen in real life too (mostly metaphorical of course) and it shows that bravery and good friends are most valuable think in world.
It is good anime because of these situations which teaches us to be brave and never give up. At least from this anime I learned that and now I never give up and continuing to be brave when it is needed.read more
(This review proceeds from Sailor Moon, so start from the beginning if you haven’t already!)
Sailor Moon S was the point in the series where the show got noticeably better than the previous few seasons. Infact, I won’t even undermine it, I love Sailor Moon S.
I’ll start off with the characters, because this season is the strongest in that sense. Introducing Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune, who were rewritten in the old english dub to be cousins in order to cover up the fact that they were depicted as being very close to each other. I think it’s fair to say that everyone knows that the original intent for these two was for them to be lesbians, and here they’re shown with nothing but respect. Obviously they receive a few surprised reactions from the cast when it’s revealed, but the other characters get used to them in no time. Every time they were on screen I applauded a fantastic representation of a group from a period in time where gays and lesbians were still being questioned for acceptance. But leaps and bounds in gay characters are one thing, how do the actual written Sailors hold up? I didn’t think anything could top the level of appreciation I had for the Sailor Soldier group from before, but these two have a great backstory together, they have even better developments than the main characters as the show goes on, and unlike the original Sailor Soldiers, they are actually good at what they do. It was the first time I saw the definition of a magical girl as a soldier of justice, not some overconfident people who just got captured all day, and that was something that I originally wanted to see out of the show. These two are extremely enjoyable characters, one of my favorite couples in anime, and they completely stole the show for me, which is awesome when you realize the entire season focuses on them.
Speaking of which, the plot of Sailor Moon S revolves around an evil scientist who is trying to find pure heart crystals which are hidden inside residents of the city. This is so he can resurrect a giant space power to bring about mass destruction to the planet. It also turns out this powerful entity is planned to inhabit the body of the scientist’s frail daughter, who happens to have just befriended Chibi Usa. So, in the usual style of Sailor Moon, they fight the bad guys, save the various people in distress, but eventually come to a position much darker than the previous seasons ever showed.
The frail daughter is tragically likable. Not in the sense that it was sad that I liked her, just because she’s in such a weak position of health and loneliness that you can’t help but feel sorry for her. Add in the factor that she’s unable to do lively things without getting pain attacks, and you have the perfect setup for emotional investment. She becomes very important by the end of the season and the entire show, and goes through the same types of development that Chibi Usa did in Sailor Moon R.
The villains are much more interesting this time around. Unlike R where I could barely remember any of the bad guys, these particular villains stuck with me. The batshit insane scientist has this permanently creepy grin on his face and just soaks up being evil as his master plan for destruction comes together. We also have a bunch of lab assistant women, all with extremely eccentric personalities for the other characters to work off of. This was also the first time the creativity of the monsters of the week stood out. There’s a ton of weird designs, and even though most of them come off as ridiculous, there were a small few that were creative gems. It was a sign that they were experimenting and at least putting effort into these hundreds of evil henchmen.
The comedy gets much better in S. There were still comedy elements in the past seasons too, but they were never as tight and strong as the jokes they pull in S. Some scenes were so hilarious and bizarre that it actually got me laughing hard, and very few anime can get me to do that. They give Chibi Usa a tiny magic wand that shoots out little hearts at enemies, and the joke is that it has a delay of about three seconds. This was enough to get many great laughs. They play around with it and throw in tons of other little things throughout the show that become big funny moments. And to top it off, Sailor Moon’s final move this time around is a massive heart that collides with the opponent, and disappears as the villain screams out a very Engrish “lovely”. How can someone not laugh at that?
This is also the opening I like the most. This particular rendition of Moonlight Densetsu has a prominent baseline and the visuals show off some amazing classic 90’s animation. It gets me pumped up everytime, and luckily they stuck with this version of the song in the later season.
Finally, this was the point in the show where you could actually tell when stuff was going down. Everything in this season is generally darker, only increasing as it progresses, raising the stakes of the Soldier’s lives and providing some great character conflict. What can you expect from a director who would go on to create Revolutionary Girl Utena? This particular season felt like a deconstruction of itself. The newly introduced Sailor Soldiers aren’t allies, infact, they’re kind of progressing the villain’s plan and causing misery to the residents. These soldiers who you’re obviously supposed to root for are doing very dark things and the others have to confront that. The pure heart crystals can have the power to take away people’s lives if they aren’t handled with care. It doesn’t just make them tired like everything did in the past, it can kill someone. Things like that were never addressed in the earlier seasons, so when the writers shed some light on it, the reveal is all the more shocking.
In the final bits of the season, not only do we see the main characters all fighting at their limits to a much darker tone than ever before, but we also get tangible progression of Usagi as a character. During the final few episodes we see her growing wiser and much more confident in what she’s doing (they are in bits, mind you, and it doesn’t carry into Sailor Moon Super S at all, but at least it was finally able to happen to this big of an effect). Compared to what Sailor Moon usually gave us, some of her actions were amazing and everything I wanted to see out of the confident Sailor Moon I saw depicted in the anime posters.
Overall, it took me by surprise, and it was definitely a pleasant one. It was the first time I found myself invested in the show, and actively enjoying the progression and exploration. Sailor Moon wasn’t the type of show to focus on those types of aspects, so I was happy that why at least had this season to build a much more serious tone onto the world which they presented. The next season would get rid of Sailors Uranus and Neptune for awhile, and when I found out about that it made me genuinely sad that they didn’t stick around. But that’s a very big compliment towards the show. It was able to create aspects that I got so invested in that I would be genuinely upset if they disappeared. This season is when I’m proud to say that I was emotionally involved in what Sailor Moon had to present to me because it struck such a big, unexpected chord.
(This review continues on to Sailor Moon Super S. My final score will be given at the review of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars.) read more
Several things I took into account when I left R, the 2nd season of Sailor Moon.
The biggest one, now that Ikuhara has complete dominance of the series, will it be better than the surprising R?
Turns out I didn't take enough things into account; not only was Sailor Moon more popular than I imagined, but Toei must've not felt that they could compete with other angst-ridden series airing at the same time with author's content.
It took a while, but S is really no better than the 1st season of Sailor Moon. Padded, reverse character development, gambling the meat of the promise at the end; just makes another stepping-stone to "that great season Sailor Stars…"
Flashing back for a moment, the last episode of R did a fine job of hinting of the next villains who I can only compare to Dr. Gero from DBZ; mysterious, uses experiments to fight primarily, and deceptively goofy in his own right.
It also hinted the most complicated characters yet to see, Neptune and Uranus.
S had a lot to live up to; Earth based villain(s), and peculiarly different heroines are thing that can really make or break a show.
Of course, I wasn't expecting any of the usual tropes to disappear, such as transformation sequences, monster of the week battles, or how the characters can't identify the obvious. These annoyances aside, credit in how they make proper use of episodes for fleshing out Uranus and Neptune's unique cases, their unique bond, and why, should be in order.
However, I will not.
Because Ikuhara decides to have those episodes be little more than detailing for background. Once Uranus and Neptune's cards are down, hardly any camaraderie bonding that's signature to SM is present.
Heck, it actually widened the primary characters away more!
In that single instance, these fascinating new characters, chained to their destinies and almost let go of it to embrace real friends, only embrace what pained them more; a literal flick of a switch. Talk about inconsistent.
That takes half the show!
As I mentioned earlier, Toei must've had their hands full with DBZ/GT, or felt scared about competing with Gundam, the Brave series, or Eva, because the art remains a little late-R throughout; no improvements.
Aside from interesting monster transformations that are extremely creative with their habitual powers (quite cool actually!), its all chump change to what beauty Toei neglects.
Musical wise, Arisawa must've liked the variations he practiced with the R Movie(which is good), since he gives each of the Inner Sailors a personal theme(when they aren't around Moon of course), which actually helps make them feel more individually effective then just pawns for Moon.
The OP theme has different singers (I think its Moon herself) but it's still one of the catchiest shojo numbers. The END isn't a stand out, but being relatively, calm and soothing helps match the gentler tone S adapts later on.
R's plot greatly revolved around the origins of Chibi-Usa and made her personal journey with the fascinating plot directions all more marvelous.
But with the plot here being dragged out with little pay-off, all that's left is character integrity.
This is why the greatest blunders of this season are, without question, the Outer Planets. Pluto, who technically debuted in R, shows up now with significantly more involvement, but like the later robotized Uranus and Neptune, quickly becomes just as empty as one of those comfy containment chambers for psychotic criminals.
Lock whoever managed the scripts on the Outer Planet sailors away in that same room!
Compared to that blunder, Chibi-Usa's reentry taking her bond with Usagi a couple steps back is a trifle.
Nevertheless, that also makes the usual banter between Moon & Inner P. feel complacently stale. It helps that they make some of the characters rough with Uranus and Neptune (the Jupiter vs. Uranus fight doesn't happen in this season, folks!), but it all feels utterly spoiled by the blunder.
Thankfully, the surprise inclusion of "the last sailor" does put a nice spin on honest emotion.
Being that emotion is Sailor Moon's strength, this makes the ending both memorable and satisfying...
I found the fun factor of this season to be a little stronger than the 1st season, but nowhere NEAR how fulfilling a single episode of R could be.
Faulty handling of characters (yes that blunder!), really makes transitioning to newer circumstances difficult since they are always involved!
Even the ending's unpredictable outcome features a last stand of Uranus and Neptune being the most distanced excuses of females I have ever seen.
Please try people, not to think of this as "another good season" of SM, because it is not.
I have yet to see Super S, but this season might just rank with it for pissing potential down the drain.
It's bad enough to use creative energy only to fail; it's another thing to do something half-assed.
And S is, unfortunately, the latter.
+ Great first half; handles the differences and slow transitions of Uranus and Neptune wonderfully. Saturn's tale is a splendid final bow to this season. Musical improvements.
- Painfully stupid plot decision in the middle; throws off the pacing and later developments for a little too long. Toei skimped out too much here.read more
As our beloved medium grows bigger and bigger, it has become apparent that certain anime names are used more often than others... a lot more often. Here is a list of the 20 most common names for boys and girls in anime.