Sailor Moon Crystal’s second arc does not waste any time in picking up where the first arc left off: Usagi is held at gun point by a pink-haired child who fell from the sky and demanded to know the location of the Legendary Silver Crystal. The girls may have just come out fresh from the defeat of Metalia, but that doesn’t mean they’re going to get a break! Chibi-Usa’s appearance (that’s the pink-haired girl, in case you don’t know) also signals the arrival of a new group of enemies who call themselves the “Black Moon”. The girls must engage this new foe using new powers, while the mystery of Chibi-Usa also remains.
In comparison to the previous arc, this one seems a bit darker. While there was some death in the first arc (the Four Dark Kings definitely die, and it would seem like the Senshi may have died and come back), it was only related to the principle cast. This episode, on the other hand, shows innocent bystanders being killed. On top of that, this new enemy comes out of the gate with a specific plan in place: kidnap Sailor Mars. This is their goal, and they seem willing to do whatever it takes to achieve it, as opposed to Queen Beryl’s weekly (or bi-weekly) ploy to draw out the Crystal.
The pacing of this episode also felt more fulfilling than some of the first arc’s content. While the general formula remains unchanged (we see the girls going about their normal lives, ultimately leading up to a final battle), it felt like there was more of a natural climax as the revelations and confrontations continued to intensify until the final battle was actually reached. The fact that the villains certainly seem to be more sinister and ruthless than their predecessors doesn’t hurt the situation, either. Overall, this new arc starts out with a greater feeling of maturity than what came before, and the enemy threat certainly seems to be greater. Hopefully this type of atmosphere will persist throughout the rest of the series.
A Christian Perspective:
2 Corinthians 11:14 – And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.
During the school festival scene in this episode, we get a sense that Rei may attend some sort of Catholic school, based on the fact that there are nuns present. Now, why there are nuns at a school that also has occult clubs and fortune telling is confusing but hey, that’s anime for you! Well, putting aside the ill-placement of the nuns, the fact remains that the enemy in this episode took up the guise of a nun to hide herself in plain site. Regardless of your opinion of Catholicism, nuns generally have an atmosphere of holiness or purity associated with them, so I’m sure you can see the connection that I am making to this content with the highlighted verse: much like Satan masquerades as an angel of the light, so this servant of evil masqueraded as a servant of the light.
The same is true in real life. How many “pastors” out there preach a message that is not biblical at all? How many people distort the Word of God for their own purposes, not caring what kind of damage they do in the process? I am not talking about people who make ignorant mistakes in interpreting the Bible—while those can still be damaging, we are probably all guilty of making a mistake at some point or another. I am talking about people who deliberately misrepresent themselves as servants of God to serve some selfish purpose. They’re out there, and they can hurt you. Thankfully, we can spot them, just as Rei was able to spot the imposter. Through spending time in God’s Word and learning to hear His voice, we can begin to discern which teachings are true and which are false. While I realize these things are easier said than done, it is good news to know that we have been provided the tools to keep from being deceived.
Content Guide: (Note that this is not a complete guide—my original file was corrupted, so I am only able to compile what I can pull from memory and the few handwritten notes I had)
Alcohol/Drug Use: Dark Moon characters are shown drinking something that could be alcoholic (not specifically stated)
Nudity/Sex/Fanservice: Some cleavage from Dark Moon females; one Dark Moon female is shown in a cleavage-revealing leotard (also shown in the preview for the next episode); Senshi transformation sequences
Violence: The senshi and Dark Moon foes trade attacks; characters are set on fire; Sailor Moon destroys an enemy
Blood/Gore: None that I can remember
Other: The magical nature of the Senshi’s attacks; Mars uses an attack that involves her being surrounded by fireballs that have symbols behind them; Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask cause a new item to materialize out of nowhere