Sailor Moon Crystal Act 2 & Act 3: Mercury Rising, Mars Attacks!

Could be worse. You could've had an installation disc for Windows 8.

Could be worse. You could’ve had an installation disc for Windows 8.

Hey, can we talk Sailor Moon Crystal? Okay, we’re talking Sailor Moon Crystal, then.

Just a basic rundown of a few key differences:

  • In the span of three episodes, Usagi has been joined by Ami (Sailor Mercury) and Rei (Sailor Mars), which took about 8 and 10 episodes respectively.
  • Mamoru’s a high school student as opposed to him being in college, which makes the age gap between him and Usagi not as weird. Speaking of which, they’re not as antagonistic towards each other here. Usagi appears to get a crush on him, Tuxedo Mask, and any other Sailor Guardian she meets. Maybe she’s bisexual.
  • Luna is apparently small enough to ride on Usagi’s head, and she can operate supercomputers that makes our technology look primitive.
  • Ami and Rei’s attack look so much cooler. You might have heard me about how Ami has the short end of the stick since her powers have pretty much no practicality. (Bubbles? Seriously?)
  • Also, it seems as though Jadeite has kicked the bucket on the same episode as Rei’s debut, so we don’t have any of him suddenly turning into a total misogynist with the drop of a hat. At least I think he died; It’s hard to tell whether he warped out of there or he got incinerated by Rei’s attack.

Anyhoo, the pacing I feel like its better than the original. While the original’s not too bad, you can still compare the two and see the differences are like night and day. And the CGI transformations are still there, but I feel like it’s grown on me, especially with Rei’s transformation sequence. Another thing I do like is how they give out this little stinger at the end of each episode to set up the plot for the next episode.

OK, now I gotta talk about the animation. The first episode was pretty top-notch in terms of animation quality, but subsequent episodes have taken a serious nosedive. I think it was because the animators put all of their effort in the first episode, but slacked off on later episodes. But for the love of God, the character models are so inconsistent that it’s obviously noticeable, even to the casual viewer. Episode 2 was the worst offender. Here’s a few highlights.

Watch as Usagi makes her transformation pen and her pocket disappear in the next frame with the point of her finger.

Watch as Usagi makes her transformation pen and her pocket disappear in the next frame with the point of her finger.

Voila! And it's gone. It's Magic! Also her face is lacking of dimension.

Voila! And it’s gone. It’s Magic! Also her face is lacking of dimension.

"Yeah, that brainwashing program also made my hair seriously deformed."

“Yeah, that brainwashing program also made my hair seriously deformed.”

Yeah, we're unsure what they did your face too, Rei.

Yeah, we’re unsure what they did your face too, Rei.

Toei, do you even hands?

Toei, do you even hands?

It makes you wonder if the animation director actually looked at these and thought “OK this is good. We’ll put it online and we’ll just fix it up for the DVD/Blu-Ray release.” I actually do hope they do, because I don’t think this kind of thing is acceptable.

Well, I guess this is what I’ll be doing with Sailor Moon Crystal while it’s airing biweekly.

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