Episode 9: Serenity – Princess
Make sure you make time to watch this episode with no interruptions because it is INTENSE.
Previously, Kunzite and the Scouts were facing off, and Tuxedo Kamen had jumped in front of Sailor Moon to save her from Kunzite’s energy attack. Episode 9 starts with the aftermath – Tuxedo Kamen is in bad shape, and Queen Beryl appears.
As he is unconscious, his head in Sailor Moon’s lap, Mamoru remembers his past life as Prince of the Earth, Endymion. (Tuxedo Kamen is commonly considered a sort of “Sailor Earth”, but he can’t be an actual Sailor Scout because he’s a dude.)
Endymion and Princess Serenity had fallen in love, but oddly it’s “God’s rule” that people from Earth and people from the Moon not have relationships. This rather unnecessarily-contrived problem pales in comparison when people from Earth, who (one assumes) had been riled up by Queen Metalia, storm the Moon Kingdom castle.
Beryl, one of Endymion’s friends, is part of the horde, and attacks Princess Serenity with a sword. Endymion died when he saved Serenity, just as he does in the present.
Tuxedo Kamen’s death triggers four things: Sailor Moon remembers her past life, her appearance transforms into that of Princess Serenity, Venus’s disguise disappears and her true symbol (♀) is revealed briefly, AND – one of Sailor Moon’s tears turns into the Legendary Silver Crystal that everyone has been obsessed with since episode 1. The Crystal emits light that goes into Tuxedo Kamen’s body and also extends to the streets of Tokyo below, causing flowers to pop open.
But in all the confusion, Kunzite kidnaps Tuxedo Kamen’s body! And takes it away!
Back at the arcade, Sailor Moon is understandably despondent over Mamoru’s death and kidnapping, and also worries about being the true Princess Serenity. Venus explains that she had pretended to be the princess to protect Sailor Moon and the Crystal (as I predicted), and that the Senshi had been Serenity’s bodyguards in their past lives.
Sailor Moon passes out from her emotional turmoil (which I’m pretty used to by now), and in a short scene in Beryl’s lair, we see that Tuxedo Kamen is still alive. The four generals look at him and feel as though they’ve seen him before, proving that they don’t remember their past lives as his friends.
Back to the Scouts: Usagi wakes up in her room with super-long hair. I’d like to take a moment and remark that a.) her hair looked like it was glowing, and I thought, “Cooooool, she’ll have white hair now like Naoko Takeuchi originally intended” b.) her hair is already super-long, so I didn’t know that was the problem until the dialogue in the next scene c.) remembering her past memories triggered physical changes? What? I think we can agree that’s weird. It seemed an unnecessary thing to put in this episode.
Anyway, Usagi doesn’t like that she’s a princess and all this pressure has suddenly been thrust upon her, and worries that she’s not strong enough – but the other Scouts (who apparently have also regained their past-life memories) assure her that she is strong, and that, in this life, she’s Usagi, not Princess Serenity. As Rei says, “You don’t need to take the same path as her.”
Everyone hugs and I’m about to bawl my eyes out.
Then Luna suggests they go to the Moon, where Beryl surely is. Usagi swears, “I will never be a tragic princess ever again.” And everyone is very determined.
This is the best episode so far – very intense and touching. I’ve been pleasantly surprised at all the interesting themes the show has touched on – in this episode, Usagi is upset that her identity as a “normal schoolgirl” is in jeopardy.
I also looooved the architecture of the Moon Kingdom and all the gorgeous scenes that took place on the Moon.
Overall, the images of space and the planets have all been amazing, and I wouldn’t be surprised if this series inspires a bunch of girls to become astronomers.
I can’t wait for:
- Going to the Moon!
- The four generals remembering their own past lives (I hope they do)