Bring the love, bring the thunder.
What They Say:
Act.17 Secret – Sailor Jupiter – Usagi and the others try to locate Ami and Rei. Seeing this, Mamoru’s underclassman Ittou Asanuma demands to know Makoto’s identity.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
It’s Jupiter’s turn to be the latest victim of the Dark Moon, but first we still have the trouble with Chibi-usa to deal with.
This episode opens with the little girl trying to comfort Usagi, who is locked up in her room trying to keep it together after the disappearance of Ami. This leads Chibi-usa to following Usagi to the arcade where we see how very alike the two are.
The little girl is clearly feeling homesick and maybe a little something else, but the show finally drops all pretense of who she really is. Through a Chibi-usa flashback we see glimpses of a kingdom apart from time, a king and queen who look very familiar, and one little girl caught in a very large explosion. Mamoru sees the explosion too when he reaches out to Chibi-usa as she wanders around outside during a thunder storm. Does anyone in Japan know where their children are on a regular basis?
The dark moon provides their motive to the audience, they want the power of the crystal and it’s amazing abilities. One of which is to keep the guardians eternally young. Eternal youth is a powerful motivator, and I can’t remember if that ability was ever stated before so explicitly. (It’s been years since I’ve read the manga.)
It’s time for the next sister, Petz, to make her move on the guardians. She targets Jupiter, and Makoto is no wiser to the evil plan of the bad guys. In fact this is the first smart plan that any of the enemies has come up with. A virus is unleashed on the populace, and with the rainy weather a cold going around seems like the most benign ailment. I’m shocked that one of them could come up with such an ingenious plan. Makoto comes down with the cold and her underclassman friend starts to worry about the strong and independent older girl.
I really like Makoto’s character building in this episode. I also like the fact that the boy finds out that Makoto and friends are more than they appear but will keep their identities secret. The whole situation just seems far above what the show has been giving us in terms of backstory for the girls. Of course when it comes down to the actual battle a sick Makoto can’t bring her A game and she’s the next to be kidnapped.
While the pacing may have improved for this episode the animation is still an outsourced mess full of continuity errors (Sailor Moon attacks with the wrong weapon) and some strange jump cuts. I don’t expect the show to gain quality this late in the series, but it’s still disappointing seeing mistakes which should have been caught at the storyboard stage make it through to air.
An improvement over the last few episodes, this time we learn a little about Makoto and a lot about Chibi-usa. It would have been nice to spend a little more time fleshing out Makoto’s relationship with her underclassman potential love interest, but alas time is of the essence. If Chibi-usa doesn’t start talking soon there won’t be a single guardian left to save the world from the Dark Moon. The kidnapping of the week format is starting to grow stale, lucky for us only Minako is left before it’s down to the two lovebirds and their pink haired intruder.
Episode Grade: B +
Streamed by: Crunchyroll, Hulu etc.
Review Equipment: 27” iMac running OS 10.10.1, via Safari 8.0.2, FIOS 15/5 Mbps connection. Your milage may vary.