It’s time for more of Sailor Moon SuperS! And this time around, the remaining Amazon Trio members FINALLY get to do something! I guess Naoko Takeuchi finally debuted their powers in the manga, so the animators had something to go on. They’re still hunting down the “Holders of Beautiful Dreams” based off of whom they want to bone, though.
Holy Hell! FINALLY Fish’s Eye gets into the act, and acts as our central villain! This episode features a nerdy artist who’s obsessed with fairies, idolizing them. It also features Hawk’s Eye & Tiger’s Eye debating the qualities of older (vs) younger women, with Hawk taking a rather predatory, gross view (“they’ll do anything I ask, no matter how selfish my request!” and “a fruit is best right before it rots”)- way to take MILF-hunting and turning it into something gross. Fish’s Eye instead jumps in and coos over the artist who’s their target, and his partners do the “Guh-whaaa…?” faces and just dryly point out “I’ve had my suspicions for quite a while” and “this verifies it”.
Fish’s Eye nonetheless decks himself out as a VERY convincing woman (ie. DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANG), acting like an ethereal, Manic Pixie Dream Girl to a man who’s literally obsessed with fairies. And sure enough, Fish’s act manages to hook him, while the other guys can never score points with their targets. Amazing. However, he freaks when Diana sniffs at his feet- being FISH’s Eye, he can’t stand it and runs off. Now the artist is obsessed with finding her again, while Fish gets a shower scene (!!!) and the Moonies all blush at the sight of the “handsome” artist. And then Tiger’s & Hawk’s Eye blush at the sight of Fish’s Eye putting on lipstick (HAHAH SO I’M NOT THE ONLY O– I mean, WEIRDOS!).
The artist and FE have a flirty little frolic around a tree, where he flirtatiously “catches her” while she laughs, and he blurts out that he wants to MARRY her! But when he finds that she’s crushed a flower in her fall, and is more concerned with the strain on her nice, new dress… he realizes she isn’t really a fairy after all. He’s all “you’re not what I thought you were…” (boy, you don’t even know the half of it), and so Fish’s Eye reveals himself and attacks. His tightrope walker Lemures forces Sailor Moon to join him on a summoned high-wire. He taunts her and does some stretches… and then Tuxedo Mask just RIFLES a rose into the back of his head, which is pretty f*cking hilarious. Pegasus & Sailor Moon then give him the business.
A funny episode, though Fish’s Eye just kind of disappears after the mirror trick and isn’t seen again.
Mamoru is suspected of cheating on Usagi, but it turns out that it’s a young widow who owns an auto repair shop- the context of the young widow with dark hair reminded me of Rumiko Takahashi’s Maison Ikokku, one of my favorite animes ever… and then I see the close-up of “Garage Ichinose”, which just confirms it- one of the main characters of Ikokku was a Mrs. Ichinose. Ami is super into the idea of helping her fix up an old car that Natsumi and her late husband had wanted to make drive-able, and so she’s our Focus Sailor this time. I love the fact that Ami is this giant closet romantic- it pops up here and there, and now she’s all “this car is FILLED with their love” and willing to overwork herself in order to fix it up.
Hawk’s Eye thinks the widow is the “highest of all older women” and so disguises himself as a likeness of her DEAD HUSBAND (yikes), causing her to faint from the exhaustion of fixing the junker. Then he visits her in the hospital in an attempt to seduce her. Chibi-Usa runs in all pissy, and they translate “That’s not important!” to “Back off, ascot!” when Hawk’s Eye says “I was trying to seduc… I mean talk about our dreams”. Natsumi ends up touched by the girls attempting to fix the car without her, but Hawk’s Eye then KIDNAPS HER… and Mamoru is hilariously RIGHT THERE with his own car, chasing after them. I mean, I guess that’s his literal superpower and has been explained, but it’s so funny to see the timing.
And then, in one of the show’s weirder fight scenes, the Trapeze Artist Lemures forces Sailors Moon, Chibi-Moon & Mercury (the others don’t fit in the car… I guess?) into flying up in the air on summoned trapezes, and then she tries to cut them down. She does so successfully, but then Tuxedo Mask, in a rare moment of indignity, arrives ON A TRAPEZE OF HIS OWN and saves them, cracks about Sailor Moon’s weight (apologizing when she points out Mercury & Chibi-Moon hanging off of her feet), and then the girls wipe out the monster. This also indicates some proof of enhanced strength in the Sailor forms, as Chibi-Moon is able to hold up Moon AND Mercury by herself, albeit with considerable strain. In a fun twist ending, Natsumi’s car DOES start… but the engine blows up seconds later. The girls all laugh, and she decides not to rush, since “I have all the time in the world!”
The bits with Natsumi are solid, but not dwelled on except in snippets. The bits where she nearly runs off with Hawk’s Eye on a proposed trip, then realizes “You’re not like my husband after all!” because he’s so casual about his sports car, are a bit weird. Like, it might come off more profound in Japan- I dunno.
Oh man, the “Inexplicable Swordfighting Girl” episode!
This one was ALSO on that VHS I rented when I was in Japan, and man, unlike the Rei/Mamoru one, this one made ZERO SENSE without subtitles. Basically, some little girl is practicing sword-fighting and trying to be the greatest master of all, and she’s living under a bridge as part of her training. Naturally, this Miharu girl is immediately made into a lifelong friend for the next 22 minutes by Chibi-Usa. The girl is interesting, as she’s drawn in a completely different style than all the other characters (angular eyes), all of the fights are OBVIOUSLY taken from Lone Wolf & Cub (a guy straight up swings at her, they clash, and he pauses for ten seconds before dropping to an unseen strike), and she speaks in a very stiff “no contractions” sort of way that’s probably the original Japanese showcasing her using the antiquated form of speech common to Samurai films (a recurring thing in manga & anime that’s lost on anyone but the weebiest of weebs who actually learn the language).
Inexplicably, the girl’s MOTHER shows up, beats the hell out of Miharu, and walks away laughing at how weak she is. The natural “WTF?!?!” reaction of the Usagis is explained by the mom not being into the idea of her daughter being a swordswoman, even though it was the dying wish of her father. Naturally, this is the business of the Usagis, who scold the heartless woman. However, her only line in her defense (“That’s her problem- she’s too focused”) is given as like this insightful thing that convinces Usagi they might be wrong, since “no mother could hate her own child” (well, she would know). Tiger’s Eye convinces Miharu to follow him for his “Secret Sword Technique” (OH GOD CALL CHRIS HANSEN).
Curiously, our big fight sees Sailors Mars & Jupiter show up, even though they have almost nothing to do with the rest of the episode. Even MORE weird, we actually get Supreme Thunder & Fire Soul (their Season 1 attacks brought out! The twist is weirder still, as the Lemures’s “cat’s cradle” (a similar Japanese thing called “Ayatori”) creates four-and-five-step ladders, but Mars stuns her with a taunt: “Can you do a SIX-step ladder?!” Alas, this trick doesn’t work, as she Snares them out of Mars attempting Burning Mandalah. Usagi convincing Miharu to “stop being so single-minded” stuns her into letting go of her sword, which hits the Lemures, finally leaving it vulnerable enough to Sailor Moon’s attack.
And then we get a weird ending, as Miharu calls out her mother… then tricks her into falling into a pit. Then says “I’ll be a multi-talented swordswoman!”, which makes the mother happy. Because… that’s not as single-minded? Then the pair go off (with mommy insisting on punishment for the cowardly tactics, but Miharu kind of laughing about it), and Usagi asserts that Miharu “has a wonderful mother”. I… does this make more sense in Japanese culture? I guess Miharu is now more well-rounded and not focused on JUST swordplay, but that makes up for the violent abuse earlier? I guess? I dunno. This episode is f*ckin’ weird.
And that’s all for now! With Fish’s Eye finally in the festivities, we’re bound to have a lot more humor in the hunts over the holders of beautiful dreams! And more stuff that probably drove the censors and dubbers crazy the world over, because HOLY CRAP were no not getting “gay man dresses as a woman to seduce and bang sexy young men” in North American cartoons in the mid-1990s!