And now, at last, we’ve reached the FINALE of Sailor Moon SuperS! All the endgame moments have ramped up- Helios’s body is trapped by Queen Nehalennia! The Amazoness Quartet have been humanized and met up with the Sailors as enemies and as friends! Sailor Chibi-Moon has redoubled her efforts to save her friend Helios, but was captured by the enemy! Let’s get two it!
So a captive Chibi-Usa is easily held back by Queen Nehalennia (the first time anyone interacts with her in person), and she gives her ORIGIN STORY! She’s the “Queen of Darkness”, from a cold & desolate asteroid, who grew envious of the Silver Millennium kingdom on the Moon centuries ago. Desiring the Golden Crystal, which could give her ownership of that kingdom, and the whole universe, she met its caretaker… Helios. Desiring not just the Crystal “but the young man as well” (PERVERT!), she offered him a place at her side, ruling the universe together… but the Crystal punished her for “possessing an evil heart”, as only those with Beautiful Dreams can gain its power. Queen Serenity imprisoned her in the darkness of the New Moon for centuries, so Nehallenia bided her time… and struck when the solar eclipse occurred, capturing Helios. And still holding a grudge “against those of the White Moon”, she tortures Chibi-Moon for her link to them. “Feel the vengeance of my long-standing grudge”, she says.
Zirconia is sent to deal with the Sailors, while the Quartet steal away with Chibi-Usa, swapping her with a dummy while the Queen taunts Helios. Zirconia activates the reflections in a house of mirrors, each trying to convince the Sailors to give up- in a great bit, a couple of them are VERY personal: Jupiter’s suggest she’s becoming less and less feminine (with an image showing her longingly staring at a loving couple, reminding her what she doesn’t have), and Mercury’s asked if she’s throwing away her dream of becoming a doctor. Venus and Mars get more impersonal ones, saying they should get more praise (to Venus), and a warning that they might die in their next fight (to Mars). Sailor Moon is taunted with childish laughing, all “oh come on, just give up and stop caring about everything else”, but of course SHE’S the first one to fight back- “I have FRIENDS to share all my joys and sorrows with!”, and the Sailors all raise their eyes and go forward. In this moment, Usagi kind of gives away all of her past desires to be a normal girl and quit all this fighting- the notion of Mamoru & Chibi-Usa in danger is enough to help her fight on. And so that aspect of her character is forever left in the past.
Several attacks (and MOON TIARA ACTION!) break Zirconia’s mirrors, and the girls insist that they still have their old dreams, but fight on regardless. The Quartet leash Pegasus and try to get the Golden Crystal, but this creates a giant wall of flames- they’re shocked when a recovered Chibi-Moon braves them and dives in to save him. Zirconia traps THEM in mirrors for their insolence, while JunJun in particular is stunned and keeps thinking about that sacrifice- “We’re definitely stronger than her, but it feels like she’s BETTER than us, don’t you think?”. And with that, we end another one.
Fun Sad Note: This is the final time Moon Tiara Action is ever seen in the series. Man, they’re just running through their early attacks now.
The cats OF COURSE just now remember an old story about Queen Serenity sealing away a wicked sorceress, because exposition only hits them after it’s too late to be useful. And the backstory of the Amazoness Quartet shows that they were once joyous, carefree scantily-clad preteens until Queen Nehalennia corrupted them through her mirror. Meanwhile, Nehalennia confronts Helios/Pegasus, blackmailing him with Chibi-Usa’s life, but his stern gaze actually AGES HER, giving us a hint to her motivations, and she panics & blasts him back. He and Chibi-Usa have a bunch of romantic moments while they’re being attacked, but she grabs his horn (CONSENT IS A THING, lady!), which results in the Golden Crystal being placed in her hand!
And now it’s Zirconia sent to kill the Sailors once and for all- she creates a batch of illusory Zirconias, but Mercury’s “Visor of All-Seeing” of course figures out which one is the real one, and her “Aqua Rhapsody” attack actually staggers the witch, leaving her hunched forward and gasping for air! But then she pleads for help from Nehalennia… who drops the Quartet in, and drains their energy into Zirconia! When they’re all “WTF, Queen?”, Nehalennia’s all “LOLZ did you think I actually cared about any of you?!” and says she just used their energy and young dreams to fuel her Dead Moon!
Mercury tells the Quartet to destroy their orbs, as that’s what’s causing the energy drain, but VesVes reveals that their “Amazon Stones” are the embodiment of their dreams! Destroying them to kill their dreams and make them become adults without magic, but Sailor Moon insists that’s garbage (“Dreams that are truly beautiful can never be destroyed…”), and of course now she’s risking her life to save her deadly enemies (in other news, night follows day; film at eleven!). The girls finally smash their Stones at that prompting, and are freed.
A staggered Zirconia stumbles to Nehalennia’s mirror… where the Queen taunts that she hates seeing her “dark reflection”, and, using the Golden Crystal, breaks the seal between worlds and enters ours! Zirconia dies screaming and vanishes in a flash of light as Queen Nehalennia enters the land of the “White Moon”. This… isn’t quite as epic as any of the previous “the world is at stake” final surges, but it’s pretty decent, I suppose.
Zirconia’s face when she realizes that this bullshit death is her demise in a series full of epic Villain Deaths.
Queen Nehallenia immediately confronts the Sailors, revealing that Chibi-Moon’s been put under a spell to make her sleep forever, easily deflects their attacks, and knocks Sailor Moon across the floor (etching the stone while she’s at it- a sign that the girls are more durable than humanly possible, maybe?) before wiping out all the others. They drag themselves off the floor and manage their old “Sailor Planet Attack!” move, but when THAT fails, they’re about done. The Amazoness Quartet plot to interfere, however, realizing they can still use their magic after all (as their power was the source of the Dead Moon’s energy, after all).
Meanwhile, a sickly Mamoru begins to dream, and HELIOS speaks directly to him- Mamo becomes Endymion in the dream-world, peering into his old land, the “Golden Kingdom”, which Helios says used to guard Elysion itself! Helios apologizes to the Prince for his failure, as now the Dead Moon has taken all the dreams from the world… but in a neat bit, a very calm Endymion kind of does the “respond with questions” thing (“Do you really think it’s possible for the Dead Moon to wipe out all dreams?” “Is your duty the only reason you protect dreams?” “Do you still have that dream?”) that causes Helios to realize that dreams cannot be stamped out- it’s a bit cheesy, but given this show, it runs on that kind of idealistic belief. And so Helios uses the last of his “Dream Magic” to awaken Chibi-Usa with a kiss (the Sailors all blush, lol)!
A furious Nehallenia is all “you’re dead now!” but turns out that she’s been pranked- the Quartet swapped the Golden Crystal with a pineapple! And then VesVes tosses the Crystal to Sailor Moon! But when she goes to use it on the Queen… it doesn’t work! It’s powered by either her darkness or beautiful dreams, all of which have been stamped out already. So the show playing the “Serious Dramatic Fight Music” was all for naught. Nehallenia declares victory… but Helios counters with Endymion’s own point that NOTHING can stop dreams- only quiet them! So Chibi-Moon literally does the Sailor Moon equivalent of the Spirit Bomb, where instead of absorbing Chi for a death bomb, they adsorb kindness and caring… for a death bomb. Yes, Chibi-Moon asks all the people of the world to renew their beautiful dreams.
Yeah, only in Sailor Moon and Care Bears can you call upon the power of human love around the world to defeat evil. Primarily the very young hear Chibi-Moon’s call, as her school friends, Unazuki (but not Motoki, notably), her teacher, and more… and the world slowly shines forth from the dark cloud encircling it. And with one final “MOON CRISIS POWER!”, the two Sailors Moon unleash the full power of the Golden Crystal, blasting Queen Nehalennia and seeing light burst out of her Dead Moon Circus!
And then the episode ends and we gotta wait to see the fallout next time, lol. Actually, this was a really good episode, quick as it was- devoted mostly to one room and their Villain Fight.
So the Care Bear Stare from last episode absolutely vaporizes hundreds of floating Dead Moon Circus Tents all across Tokyo, and finally, the large central tent also falls. All the Sailors are down, but Sailor Moon recovers to see Nehalennia fly off with Chibi-Moon in the ruins of the central tent. Hanging on for dear like, Usagi spots the Queen… and realizes she’s now shriveled up like Zirconia was! And the agonized Queen reveals her full backstory (in the final episode?!?)- she was once the beloved Queen of a joyous nation, but the realization that her future was to become ugly, the beautiful girl (her face is drawn with the “large round eyes” instead of the Womanly Eyes of Evil Adulthood, so you know she’s young and pretty) devoured the dreams of all of her subjects in order to maintain “eternal youth and everlasting beauty”. Losing their Dream Mirrors transformed her subjects into the bizarre aberrations of the Dead Moon, and cast spider-webs all over her world. Oh, and she explicitly refers to them as “living corpses”, which is hella-dark, even for Sailor Moon.
Queen Nehalennia’s younger version has big round eyes, indicating her tremendous beauty. Japan is… rather ageist, as you might notice.
The Queen accepts her fate of going back to the Dead Moon (which is why her citadel is rising), because she’s going to be ugly and nothing else matters… but demands revenge against Sailor Moon, strangling her with a Zirconia-In-The-Box from her chest. But Usagi stuns her with her with an “I feel so sorry for you”- she recoils, remembering the past, when Princess Serenity of Silver Millennium gave her the same pitying look as Queen Serenity originally sealed her away in the Dead Moon. Disgusted with the pity, she THROWS CHIBI-MOON OFF THE CITADEL, since “you took away what I cherish most”, so she’ll do the same to her enemy. Usagi defiantly leaps after her, as the Queen derides her foolishness, and happily goes back to the Dead Moon, alone but still “young and beautiful forever!”, as she goes back into her dark mirror, trapping her in the youthful image once more- and that’s how we leave Queen Nehalennia. And so it becomes super-clear- the Queen’s dream is the opposite of Chibi-Usa’s- one has the mature dream of wanting to get older, while one childishly holds on to the image of youth at all costs.
Sailor Moon falls short of catching her future-daughter, however, but REFUSES to give up in her own Usagi way, which naturally causes the real moon to appear in front of the Dead Moon, which transforms her into Princess Serenity, who, in addition to wielding the power of the Silver Crystal, can also fall faster I guess, so she grabs onto Chibi-Moon! Well that’s different from just using the Silver Crystal again, I suppose. But still things get desperate, as some great animation and scenery sees them careen towards the earth, but finally some impassioned pleas of “We’ll lose our future!” and “Let’s grow up together” finally awaken the girl, which awakens Helios, who transforms into Pegasus and gives us the “icon shot” of the two Princesses with flowing wings descending to earth.
This show loves shots of its girls in wings.
And we finally end things with everyone at the park, saying goodbye to Helios, who cannot stay in our world (as the protector of the Golden Crystal and ruler of Elysion, his duty is elsewhere). He kisses Chibi-Usa on the hand to say goodbye (hilariously, Makoto & Rei are both annoyed that Chibi-Usa has “beat us to it…”). VesVes, showing up for the first time all episode, distracts everyone so that Chibi-Usa get get a free hug in while everyone’s not staring at her, then the Amazoness Quartet walks away, figuring they’ll see the girls again some day. And our last shot is Pegasus flying away, with Chibi-Moon mournfully saying she never got the chance to tell him about her dream- Usagi says they’ll see each other again someday, and that’s that for Sailor Moon SuperS.
And that does it for my reviews of Sailor Moon SuperS! But I’m not quite done- I want to add a final summation to the series, along with reviews of its villains, but this was already running a bit long. So join me in a bit, for my ultra-long essay, “HOLY SHIT THIS SEASON RAN FOREVER!”