Sailor Moon Crystal: Episode 15 – “Act.15 INFILTRATION -SAILOR MARS-“

Sailor Moon Crystal is a remake of the original Sailor Moon anime series that began airing in Japan in 1992. Unlike the original anime series, Sailor Moon Crystal aims to remain as faithful to the original manga source material as much as possible. While this new series utilizes more modern animation techniques, the character designs try to retain as much of the early 1990’s look as it possibly can.

With the defeat of Queen Metalia, it seemed that peace had returned to Earth. But as Episode 15 quickly makes clear, peace has not returned for either the Earth or for Usagi herself.

A little girl who bears a resemblance to Usagi falls out of the sky in front of her, points a gun and demands the Legendary Silver Crystal. Mamoru tries to save Usagi, but it turns out the gun only shoots out flowers and confetti. The girl runs away, and Usagi and Mamoru catch up with her. The girl, who they start referring to as Chibi-Usa, becomes clingy to Mamoru and openly shows disdain for Usagi.

As we get to see Chibi-Usa throughout Episode 15, it’s obvious that there’s something strange about her. However, it becomes even stranger when Chibi-Usa is brought to Usagi’s house and she hypnotizes the other members of Usagi’s family. This allows Chibi-Usa to stay without any questions. But Usagi doesn’t get along with Chibi-Usa and doesn’t trust her, and Chibi-Usa makes it a point of following Usagi around.

When I read this portion of the story in the manga, I found Chibi-Usa to be annoying. I have to say that somehow, Sailor Moon Crystal found a way to make Chibi-Usa come across as even more annoying than she was in the manga. Without providing spoilers, all I will say that is Chibi-Usa will ultimately play an important role in this story arc. Unfortunately, you have to put up with her bratty and annoying behavior in this arc until she reaches the point in it where she plays the important role. Having to deal with Chibi-Usa is going to make the second half of Sailor Moon Crystal a harder watch for me than the first half was.

Episode 15 also introduces the new villains, Black Moon. Prince Demande appears to be the one in charge and issuing orders to Crimson Rubeus, Green Esmeraude, and Blue Saphir. Rubeus has four subordinates who are known as the Spectre Sisters. There’s also Wiseman behind the scenes, and the audience gets the impression that there’s more to him than what meets the eye.

Rei is helping out the Supernatural Research Club at her school for their festival entry. As Rei talks with them, she learns about recent UFO sightings and cases of spontaneous combustion. Of course, this wasn’t some random information that was thrown out there, and Rei and the viewer find out later what significance these events have to the story.

As Rei does her fortunetelling at the festival, she is informed of another club, the Supernatural Phenomenon Association, whose fortune teller is forecasting when people will die. During the festival, Rei discovers that Koan, one of the Spectre Sisters, has infiltrated the school with some of her minions. Usagi and the others arrive at the festival, and it’s a good thing that Luna had given them new transformation items and communicators! The Sailor Guardians transform and take on Koan, when something unexpected happens to Sailor Mars…

So the Black Moon arc truly gets underway during Episode 15, and features another group of people trying to get their hands on the Legendary Silver Crystal. But this time, you also have the mysterious Chibi-Usa trying to get her hands on it as well. At least having Chibi-Usa thrown into the mix helps to make the plot of someone trying to get their hands on the Legendary Silver Crystal different from the first story arc of Sailor Moon Crystal. I don’t want to say too much, since I’ve read the Sailor Moon manga and know what’s coming up, but I will say that there are some unexpected surprises in store as the Black Moon arc progresses.

It should also be noted that some of the shots in the opening have now been replaced. Any shots that featured Queen Beryl or her minions have been replaced by shots of Black Moon, Chibi-Usa, and another character that hasn’t been introduced in Sailor Moon Crystal yet, but will become an important character later on.

Even though the publicity for Sailor Moon Crystal was saying that Episode 14 started the Black Moon Arc, I still believe that it’s this episode that marks the change. The only part of Black Moon that appeared in Episode 14 was when Chibi-Usa fell out of the sky right at the end of it. Also, since the change to the opening credits wasn’t until Episode 15, it would make more sense to refer to this one as the start of the Black Moon Arc.

So now I have to wait two weeks to see what happens next. However, I’m not as excited as I could be about it, since it’s very likely that Chibi-Usa will be making at least one appearance.

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