We pick up immediately where Act 8 left off– with Tuxedo Kamen taking a blast from Kunzite. It is in this moment where his memories come rushing back to him, and in this moment where anyone who’s been lagging on the storyline should put the pieces together.
Tuxedo Kamen was Endymion, Prince of Earth. He was killed defending the Moon Kingdom, as he fell in love with its princess, Serenity. He was reborn on earth as Mamoru Chiba. He finally puts it together that Princess Serenity is Sailor Moon.
Sailor Moon goes through similar revelations, regaining her memories as Princess Serenity. Her hideous tiara shatters (hooray!) away to reveal the crescent moon on her forehead. I understand the silly shape a bit better now, but that’s just a testament to how much of a fail this tiara was. While her crescent moon appears, Venus’s gives way to the traditional tiara of Sailor Venus.
Sailor Moon/Serenity’s tears bring forth the Legendary Silver Crystal with a blinding flash so bright that the Dark Moon Kingdom and the Sailor Senshi must look away. Light from the crystal fills Tuxedo Mask’s body.
Kunzite steals Tuxedo Mask at Queen Beryl’s request– she assumes that the Legendary Silver Crystal is within him having seen that light fill him. At this point, I’m a bit confused as I assumed it was still in Serenity’s hands. Well, I’m right. It’s the Dark Moon Kingdom who made the mistake, blinded, as they were, by the light.
But they have Mamoru, and Usagi is inconsolable. Let’s talk about Usagi, though. She knows at this point that she is Serenity, but her refusal to recognize herself as a princess is everything. I’m just a schoolgirl, she repeats. This to me is not a refusal to step up and take responsibility. We know she can do this, as she’s struggled and finalized realized herself to be the leader of the Sailor Senshi. (A position which Venus is more than happy to claim now that everyone knows she’s not Princess Serenity.) Usagi is a leader, and her friends gathered around her for comfort illustrates this well. What Usagi is not, in her own eyes, is “special.” Usagi wants simple things: to fall in love, to be ladylike. She is no princess; she is Tsukino Usagi: a girl in love with a boy. Rei offers pivotal words that she does not have to take the same path as her previous incarnation; she is who she is for a reason.
Here’s my only sticking point on this episode, which is more of a series-wide sticking point, I just noticed it here: why are the girls always wearing their school uniforms?! What I loved about the original anime is that you always saw the girls in street clothes. I always wished they were color-coded, because I’m into that thing, but they never were which makes it so much more real. You got a better sense that these were just girls going about their daily lives. With the exception of Usagi in pajamas, we never see the girls in any garb but Sailor Senshi or schoolgirl. This is one thing I’d like to see change.
Anyway, now they’re off to the moon!
What did you guys think of Act 9?