Secrets may not make friends, but they sure do stretch out the episode count.
I don’t know what it is about this arc that’s making me so impatient, but when Chibiusa didn’t just tell us everything that was going on at the end of this week, I wanted to jump through the screen and throw Beanie Ballz at her. (What? I have a small collection, so it makes sense to throw those specifically!) Maybe it’s because I haven’t gotten attached to Chibs or any of the new villains yet, and since we’re not really getting any new character interactions (remember all those fun side characters we met in Season 1? Whatever happened to those crazy kids?), it all feels a bit like a Sailor Moon Rehash. It’s amusing enough to watch Rei and her grandpa get into scrapes, but the story doesn’t really tell us anything we didn’t already know, y’know?
Well, minor issues with momentum aside, there was some Pertinent Information along the way, and some Silly Stuff, too. So we’re gonna have a fun a time with that, at least. Summaries, ho!
Episode 63 – “A Slightly Lecherous Old Man’s Reason for Living”
Thanks to a local news article alerting unsuspecting young ladies to The Dirty Old Man of Torii Lane, no one’s visiting Hikawa Shrine these days. So Grandpa seriously thinks about his hurtful actions and seeks to become a more respectful person retires from the priest business to start a ladies’ self-defense class. Nngh. This is really the first time Grandpa’s lechery has been painted as (1) aggressive and (2) something that upsets people, which gives the whole episode a whiff of unpleasantness. Rei chastises him nonstop, so it’s not like the series is condoning his behavior, but it still irks me, and I usually find Grandpa kind of adorable in his “hohoho cute girls are cute!”-ness.
So anyway. Protection Aesthetics! This is his newly invented martial style, meant to combine “self-defense and beauty workouts.” Think of it as a cross between karate and Richard Simmons.
Gramps has made Teddy (Teddy!!) his Instructor, and Teddy’s so adorably thrilled to be trusted with this responsibility that he gets super into it, determined to make his “master’s” dream come true. Rei, a better judge of character than sweet, dopey Teddy, understands that Grandpa REALLY just wants to be in a room full of young ladies, and spends most of the episode telling him to stop being gross. It works about as well as you’d expect.
As if Rei didn’t have enough problems, the little building where Grandpa has set up his business is one of the “Crystal Points” in Tokyo, so it doesn’t take long before Spectre Sister Koan gets in on the action. It’s not super clear if Protection Aesthetics suddenly gets a bunch of students because Koan curses the building, or just because all the girls think Teddy is totes adorbs (my bet’s on the latter—who can resist a sheepdog in a suit?), but either way, once the room is full of ladies, Koan introduces herself as a prospective instructor. She then proves her superior skill, restraint, and professionalism by having her assistant (read: droid) Dumbull beat the living shit out of everyone.
“Le GASP!” says Teddy, bursting through the door. “MASTER! I thought I was your instructor!” But Grandpa just can’t resist a pair of boobs pressed against his back, so he fires Teddy and replaces him with Koan. “Dick move, old man!” Rei cries (it’s a loose translation), and washes her hands of him entirely.
This lasts all of five minutes, when Dumbull inevitably turns her Fists of Fury on Grandpa, and Rei flies in through the plothole to take the blows meant for him. Because Family! Moved by her loyalty and affection, Gramps pushes HER out of the way and takes an energy blast to the face for his troubles.
And with Grandpa unconscious, Usagi is free to bust through the doors and transform into Sailor Moon. The Tux also shows up to stand on a pole and kick droids in the face. Usagi halates Dumbull into a Deadbull, but unlike past enemies, the Spectre Sisters have proven they’ll actually stick around to kick ass with their own two feet. Koan chases after Sailor Moon, giving Rei enough time to raise her Righteous Fury™ to critical mass so she can transform into Sailor Mars, push Moon to safety, AND learn a new spell: Burning Mandala.
Koan flees, skirt aflame. The Tux flees, angst alight. And Grandpa is left to reevaluate his life choices at last. He switches over to a “Protection Jazz Dance” class, which garners one instructor—Teddy, just happy to be wanted—and one student—Chibiusa, determined to “get stronger” so she can spank Usagi (literally). And so the trio jazzercise adorably into the end credits.
Episode 64 – Thunder, Thunder… THUNDERSPATS!
(Why yes, I did use this heading twice this week—once here and once on my translation blog. Hey, if Sailor Moon can recycle character beats, why can’t I recycle title puns?)
The Cult of the Black Crescent takes a break from Crystal Points this week to search for “Rabbit” again. They know their pint-sized quarry is afraid of thunderstorms, and they figure if they rustle one up, the Rabbit might freak out enough to give away her presence again. Rubeus delegates the task to Spectre Sister Petz, who then delegates it to her droid Furuaki, who proceeds to make it rain.
The winds blow and crack their cheeks, spooking Usagi to flee back to her home—only to learn that her mom’s out with a friend, so it’s Usa’s job to pick Chibs up from elementary school. She musters up her courage and heads back out into the storm, but she takes her sweet time doing it. And meanwhile Chibiusa waits while the other kids’ parents come to pick them up one by one, leaving the Chibi alone in the storm and desperately missing her own parents.
Eventually Chibi gives up on waiting and wanders off. She and Usagi continue to JUST miss each other (even after Usa enlists Mamoru’s help, and that guy’s got a freaking Chibi-dar embedded in his head), until Chibs finally curls up under an awning and WHOA WAIT WHAT THERE’S A TINY PIXELATED LADY LIVING INSIDE LUNA-P.
Chibs chats with the pixelady (jokes, aside, I’m assuming this is a video feed and not an actual tiny person living inside Luna-P, although it’s Sailor Moon, so who can say, really?), a being called “Puu” who knows a thing or two about time travel and whom I have therefore dubbed “Doctor Puu” (you’re welcome, Internet).
Chibs wants to go home, but Doctor Puu tells her she’s sorry, so sorry, but Chibs needs to buck up and focus on the mission. She can’t see her mommy until after she saves her mommy. Chibiusa agrees at first, but the thunder proves too much for her and she tries to go back to the future anyway. Except that instead of the future, she calls up a laser light show. Oh, and she kinda makes gravity go away. Like ya do.
The effects only occur within the building (I’m guessing it’s a kind of department store), where the rest of the sailor scouts just so happen to be hanging out, waiting for the rain to end. So now everyone’s defying gravity!
Ami thinks this is just The Neatest Thing Ever and badly wants to do some Science on it, but everyone else is pretty freaked, most of all Chibiusa. She calls up her Super Crying Powers again, alerting Furuaki—and Usagi—AND Mamoru—to the Chibi’s presence. Everyone comes a-runnin’ in the order you’d expect: First Furuaki to rough everyone up, then Sailor Moon to get electrocuted (you can’t dodge in the anti-grav room!) and finally Tuxedo Mask, fashionably late since he had to spend all that time climbing the building to reach a decent Posin’ Ledge.
There’s a lot of good Tuxedo silliness here—a heartfelt scolding about how you shouldn’t use drums for eeeevil, roses thrown as if they were knives—but I’m still a little pissed at The Tux for last week’s nonsensical breakup, so the giggles didn’t come as easily as usual. After he finishes being ridiculous and surprisingly badass, Usagi halates Furuaki into dust, and Petz (weirded out by all the floatin’ peoples) opts to retreat as well. Chibiusa admits to shattering the laws of physics (oh you are SO grounded, missy) and turns everything back to normal.
Oh, and then I threw a table, ‘cause this happened.
The girls: Whoa, how did you do that?
Chibiusa: I used, uh, you know… The Thing. The Thing That Gets Me Home.
The girls: “Gets you home”? And where’s that?
Chibiusa: UM UM UM nothing, forget it, what home, I’M NOT FROM THE FUTURE YOU ARE.
Sailor Moon: You know, if you told us what’s going on, we could help you.
The girls: We all just want to help you, Chibiusa.
Chibiusa: Er, well…
The Tux: Whaaaat?! You want to TELL each other things?! That’s crazy talk. Now don’t you listen to them, Chibiusa. You just button those lips and take your secrets to the grave, like a REAL superhero does.
Chibiusa: Gee, thanks, mister! I shall immediately trust you and follow your advice!
…You know what? No animated gif will suffice. We need a video for this one.
So, to conclude, Tuxedo Mask is Chibiusa’s favorite person, and we’re not going to find out about her mission for another 20 episodes. Yaaaaaay…
This, That, and the Other
- Our antagonists have moved from the Floating Crystal Fortress of the early episodes to a psychedelic rotunda.
And I hereby dub it: The PCPavilion! ‘Cause it just wouldn’t be a new arc of SM if I wasn’t giving the villains’ hideout a silly nickname.
- “But I think their time would be better spent studying than running around together in the rain.” -Ami, perfectly summarizing how I feel about Usagi and Mamoru’s relationship right now.
- I would like us all to take a moment to feel very sorry for the real tragic figure of this week’s episode: The Random Elementary School Boy who waited in the rain with Chibiusa. First, because instead of going home to toys, cartoons, and books about talking animals, his dad is taking him to cram school; and second, because he ALREADY has to listen to idiots telling him that “boys don’t cry,” and he’s going to have to deal with that crap for the rest of his life. Way to perpetuate harmful gender stereotypes, Chibiusa! You are just batting a-freaking-thousand so far.
- This week in “Why yes, I DID take a screenshot of that”: Butt Sweatdrop!
Never let it be said that I don’t have fun with this show, because holy wow, do I ever.
- Hark! A plot point! Chibiusa’s key is the device that (theoretically) allows her to travel back and forth through time. Which makes total sense. I mean, as Doctor Puu’s trusted companion, it’s only natural that she’d have a key to the TARDIS, right?