When new villains known as the Death Busters arrive to threaten Earth, two new Sailor Guardians also appear: Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune. They are very different from Sailor Moon and her friends and they claim to have no interest in working cooperatively with them to defeat the threat. Meanwhile, Chibi-usa has befriended a sickly girl named Hotaru who has an amazing power to heal others. Although she is very kind and gentle, for some reason Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune are both determined to make sure that Hotaru dies!
Last year I wrote a very angry review on Sailor Moon Crystal (seasons 1 and 2). It was bad. I was crying because it was so bad and I love Sailor Moon so much. I have a Sailor Moon tattoo on my back and it hurts when I remember those horrible Crystal times. Suddenly season 3 changed all of that and if I could I'd change the last part of my review. Instead of watching Crystal episode 1 and walking away, I now tell people to start Crystal with the Infinity arc. I guess their budget raised considerably and I could feel some love for the manga this time. The transformation sequences are all 2D again, the attacks look pretty and the inner senshi are finally showing some personality. It does help that - at least in my opinion - the Infinity arc on the manga is considerably more interesting than the first 2. It also helps that this time they paid more close attention to the manga and didn't change things that shouldn't be changed. Maybe because the outer senshi are so amazing and Haruka and Michiru are probably the most popular of them all. I get the impression the new directors (honestly I didn't research much on it but I'm pretty sure they're different) know that and there are so many great moments of them, including a beautiful ending sequence and some cute fanservicey moments. Remember how in the beginning we could not relate at all with any of the senshi, and scenes that should be heartbreaking wouldn't do a thing? That changed now. The final episodes are very well done in that aspect and it makes me very excited for the next arc. The animation looks a lot better than before. There are still some derp faces moments (mostly near the end) but nothing that makes me want to stop watching. The BGM didn't change and is still "meh", but at least there's some cute and catchy ending songs (Otome no Susume!) to make up for it. I'm not a big fan of the opening theme though, Moonlight Densetsu nostalgia still speaks louder, but that might be just me. Sailor Moon Crystal: Infinity made me forgive a little bit the catastrophic mistakes of the first seasons and appreciate the characters even more. It gave me hope that the next seasons might be even better and I'm looking forward to watching them!
I'm sure we all know by now that unfortunately Sailor Moon Crystal Seasons 1-2 were horrible, and unfortunately season 3 would be worse. However, that is not the case, and I would highly recommend people who dropped Sailor Moon Crystal to check out season III (if not, that's fine). Why? Well these are the reasons why Sailor Moon Crystal Season III, despite some hiccups, is the best season of Sailor Moon Crystal. 1) The art and animation are far superior. The characters look more like their manga counterparts with a bit of the 90's anime version mixed in. The budget definitely is higher than the first two seasons. The proportions are better and they show more emotion. The animation is much more fluid for the most part, the CGI is gone completely from the transformations. They are so well done, if there were awards for "Best Magical Girl Transformations of the Year", these would win it. There are parts where the animation isn't so good and kinda choppy, but they are few and far in between, and mostly it's still fluid. The monster designs for the Daimon are lame and stupid, especially compared to S's, too, but the monster designs look far superior than in the first two seasons. 2) The story is extremely faithful to the Infinity arc, considered the best manga arc by fans, but in some ways, actually adds deviations that make it even better than the original manga version, like Moon having a reason to dive into Pharaoh 90 in the end. The only flaws are that it still has bit of the "1:1 adaptation" to it like the first two seasons, and the story does peter out at the end, but overall, it's not a bad story, but S has the advantage of being 38 episodes with character focus episodes in it whilst Crystal Season III has only 13 with little to no character focus episodes. 3) Better characterization. All of the characters, even the Inners, have hints of personalities to them, and can easily be recognized as their manga counterparts, even the Inners are done better and are slightly more useful, Usagi is far superior and actually cares about others, and the friendship with Chibi-Usa and Hotaru is executed perfectly, Chibi-Usa is far superior here in season 3 than in season 2. The only flaws with characterization of the Inners still don't develop and don't feel like they have much importance or any realistic personalities, their focus episodes don't really add anything to them and sometimes they're still useless, and Moon still feels too perfect like she can do no wrong, the friendship between those five still feels unbelievable, but they're still believable as characters, though once again, not as good as S. Unfortunately, two of the Outers are less impressive. Sailor Uranus/Haruka, is too overplayed as if all the focus on the Outers goes to her, and Sailor Neptune/Michiru is too underplayed, just feels like she's "there", and doesn't feel like she has that much of a personality compared to her 90's counterpart, other than being Uranus' accessory, sadly this is another flaw the manga had, and it doesn't make their relationship beloved by fans believable in this version, showing unfortunately the manga's characterizations of them haven't aged well also. Also, that whole thing with the kiss was just plain wrong, and the Outers' behavior when we first see them make them look way worse than their 90's counterparts, who were wonderful characters despite their controversial tactics and cold behavior. Pluto and Saturn are used excellently though. Sadly also, most of the villains aren't too impressive, still mostly bland and such, and some are just unlikable compared to other versions, like Professor Tomoe, who instead of being the crazy, goofy, hilarious, insane mad scientist guy in S, was just a standard, typical mad scientist who unfortunately was an abusive, cold hearted monster. The only villains I really liked were Pharaoh 90 himself, Mistress 9 (who was also slightly creepy with those googly eyes of hers, and her true form was freaky), Kaorinite, and Vilyui, the latter whom they made much more intelligent than in the other two versions, I'll give props for that. Most of the themes/music are pretty good, I love all three versions of the new theme song and the first and third endings, Eternal Eternity I'd even say is a modern music masterpiece. Unfortunately, Chibi-Usa's theme song, which would more fit the Dream arc, if we get it, or the Black Moon arc, is terrible. The voice acting is good as always, and props to Junko Minagawa for a practically perfect duplicate of Uranus' original voice (and adding a wonderful touch of masculinity to "Eternal Eternity"...), never before have I heard a perfect imitation of her voice, the only other close ones would be Hisako Kanemoto as Mercury and Ai Maeda as Sailor Pluto. Kotono does a better job as Usagi, Shizuka Itoh is good as Venus, Rina Sato decent as Mars, Ami Kochimizu OK as Jupiter (Neptune and Saturn, though I forgot who voiced them were good too), but I cannot stand Misato Fukuen's take on Chibi Moon, she sounds really miscast and whenever she shouts Chibi Moon's transformation and attack name, it sounds weird and odd, she sounds more like a middle aged woman trying to imitate a 7 year old. Despite the flaws that this series has, the good points far outweigh it and gives hope that we will get more seasons, it captures a lot of the original charms that made the original manga and anime so great and beloved, Toei put a great amount of effort into this. I'm excited for the Dead Moon arc, which was the best manga arc, better than the Infinity manga arc and the original SuperS, the worst arc of the original anime. Sailor Moon Crystal Season III, which was a beacon of hope like Usagi/Sailor Moon in there, isn't as great as the original Sailor Moon S, but it is still a decent, watchable modern day Sailor Moon anime/show, and I give it a 6.5/10, count it as the true first season of Crystal, but can recommend it to those who liked Super/the manga. I'm sure Naoko would have loved this one, and I think both Infinity arc anime series will stand the test of time. I still can't recommend Crystal as a whole though, with two horrible seasons being followed by only one excellent third season. I cannot wait for the fourth season of Crystal though, and I hope it's just as great, if not better.
What a huge improvement on the first two of the sailor moon Crystal series animation wise! I grew up watching the 90s anime series, if you're expecting that then you will be disappointed. Crystal is based almost entirely off the manga series, which you'll already know if you've been a long time fan of Sailor Moon. I think why I actually prefer Crystal 3 to the 90s is the lack of filler, we get straight into the nitty gritty here! Of course the manga was ongoing at the time hence the filler and why there's no need for it. Personally, what sets it apart for me is Sailor Moon's relationship with Tuxedo Mask it's so much healthier in this version, he's very encouraging, supportive and has his own power! Her relationship with Chibiusa is also much healthier then the 90s portrayal would suggest. The highlight would be the awakening of Sailor Saturn, what a badass reveal she had! Uranus and Neptune weren't as cold but because of the pacing there isn't a lot of character development for them, I know that disappointed a lot of people, myself included but as it follows the manga, it's basically how it went there. The 90s had a bit more creative freedom with them, however I wasn't much of a fan of them in that version especially Neptune she came across as very snooty and both were very unwilling to work with the others, even in the end they still did things their own way. There is less of that in Crystal. As a long time fan of Sailor Moon, I adored this season and it's my go too if I want to watch sailor moon now. I avoid the 90s anime because I don't care for some of the character development now that I've read the manga and seen this. It will always be in my heart but this is my comfort Sailor moon version. I've watched it at least 10 times since it was released in 2016, the eternal movies following are also very good and i absolutely hated that arc in the 90s. Definitely recommend
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