A fan of the series since 1995, Koriander runs the popular Moon Sisters fan site and studies the Sailor Moon franchise closely.
26 years after the debut of Sailor Moon SuperS on Japanese television, the Sailor Moon Eternal movies debuted on select screens in Japan to continue Sailor Moon Crystal into its fourth season.
And fans of the Sailor Moon manga are loving them both.
Last time, we looked at how Crystal and Eternal had given a much needed glow up to Chibiusa, Rei and the Amazoness Quartet, but there's a few more characters enjoying an upgrade.
In the 90s anime, Rei's grandfather is seen as the town pervert, putting his hands in places they do not belong and sexually harassing men, women and underage girls left and right, while clashing with his granddaughter, Rei.
By the end of the first season, it's revealed that "Grandpa Hino" is really the reincarnation of the Youma Jiji, one of the Seven Great Youma (or Rainbow Crystal Carriers if you remember the DiC dub) and holder of the Indigo Crystal, which of course is part of Usagi';s Silver Crystal. This not only threw into question his role as a Shinto Priest (as if being the town pervert didn't already) but it also makes him the longest lived Youma by proxy, and one of two Youma to appear in SuperS as a normal character. (The other being Reika.) Further complicating things, this also makes Rei - whose job it is to fight Youma in the first season as Sailor Mars - one quarter Youma by default, which at least would explain her temper.
His lechery was really problematical in Sailor Moon R episode 63 when he tried to run a women's self-defense class after a scathing ad about his sexual harassment runs off teenagers from the Hikawa Shrine. Not only does he use the class as a ploy to bring in new victims, he trashes Rei and even chooses the evil Koan over Yuichirou and his own granddaughter when given an ultimatum.
Rei's grandfather's final 90s anime appearance took place in episode 136 during the SuperS season, where he was - get this - sexually harassing Mamoru, unaware that this is Rei's ex-boyfriend.
Short, selfish, brash and just plain creepy, fans were curious as to how Toei would handle Rei's grandfather for the reboot.
Preliminary ticket buyers say very, very well.
While he was absent for Sailor Moon Crystal's first three arcs, he is now part of the cast of Sailor Moon Eternal and he is definitely turning heads. Sitting up with beautiful locks of white hair, a gym perfect body and alluring purple eyes, Rei's Grandfather even when he's sick, stands head and shoulders above his 90s counterpart.
While he's still a little different from his manga counterpart, (who for the record, is blonde) he's shown as having a much more caring relationship with Rei than what we saw in Sailor Moon R, and this welcome refresh is taking the internet by storm.
Once an awkward and unsettling side character, now Rei's Grandfather is reeling in older anime fans like never before.
Mamoru Chiba, Tuxedo Mask
The 90s anime took two seasons to turn college student Mamoru from a strange bully with a weird fixation on tormenting a middle school girl with pigtails into a thoughtful new hero in tune with his emotions.
It was a rough couple of seasons for Mamoru, who got saddled with the controlling Rei as a self-appointed girlfriend, got killed and brought back from the dead with 13 episodes of amnesia and a racially questionable split persona as Sir Moonlight Knight, and then he gets strangely bullied by his future self into breaking the heart of Usagi to prove his love? This was just a mess.
But making things worse, outside of the Sailor Moon R movie and just a brief handful of instances where he threw something not a rose, poor Mamoru's powers were completely erased from the series, putting him in the same boat of squandered hope with his daughter, Chibiusa.
But all of that changed just a few episodes into Sailor Moon Crystal, where Tuxedo Mask comes into his own as a hero. He starts developing his own super powers, pushing out energy blasts on the same level as Sailor Moon and her friends, he knocks Zoisite silly with a punch out of nowhere, and by the end of the third season, he is right there on the battlefield combining his powers with the rest of the team.
He even gets his own named attack, Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber, and guess what? Usagi is his only girlfriend. (We're not counting Beryl or Black Lady, because he was possessed. Remember, possession isn't consent.)
In Sailor Moon Eternal, he awakens his own crystal, just like Sailor Moon. He is able to overcome an illness dropped on him from out of nowhere, and use his power to help Sailor Moon save the world.
And remember how in the Sailor Moon R movie and in Sailor StarS, he could turn back into Prince Endymion if the need arose? Well Eternal saw fit to crown him, and he can now become King Endymion without having to wait for Crystal Tokyo. Not so weak anymore, is he?
The teamwork of the Outer Sailor Guardians
While the 90s anime towards the Sailor StarS arc did give Sailor Pluto back her correct skin color, it didn't do a whole lot of favors for this team after Sailor Moon S.
Outside of one SuperS TV special, the SuperS movie and the long forgotten SuperS Sega Saturn video game, the outer Sailor Guardians just weren't used.
We find out that Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune knew about the other girls having to fight the Dead Moon Circus, but they chose not to help them. Uranus and Neptune ran from a real fight and went on a season long vacation, fully aware that Sailor Moon totally could have used their help.
Pluto randomly returns from the dead in the SuperS movie, then re-appears in Sailor StarS with no explanation, and fans who badly missed her would further be cheated when in that final season, her appearances dropped out altogether until the final few episodes.
But Saturn's fans felt even more cheated, as the little goth girl who stole hearts (litterally in S) was completely absent for SuperS and most of Sailor StarS with even fewer appearances than Pluto.
If you didn't buy the Sega Saturn video game or bootleg an AVI or MPEG clip of the game from early fan sites, you just never saw Sailor Saturn's transformation, as they didn't even give her the dignity of an on screen transformation as Sailor Saturn or even Super Sailor Saturn.
If you did see the Outers in action, it usually was pretty hostile. Between Uranus constantly trying to boss Sailor Moon around or that one time Uranus and Neptune killed their adopted daughter, it seemed like they were here to be antagonists and nothing more.
But towards the end of Sailor Moon Crystal's third season, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto learn the value of communication and have learned to trust in Sailor Moon's judgement.
This evolves into Sailor Moon Eternal where not only do the girls all team up again, but they now get to do it in not one, not two, but three new forms, bringing their status up to match that of Sailor Moon's.
Now the girls can be seen in Super, Eternal and Princess forms, and it's their unity with the rest of the cast that are going to save the world.
These upgrades are just super.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Koriander Bullard