Super Recaps: Sailor Moon Episode 30 (Grandpa Loses Control: Rei in Danger)

Sailor Moon and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Toei Animation and licensed by Viz Media

Episode directed by Kazuhisa Takenouchi

Welcome back to another episode of Everybody Loves Rei!  So it’s become clear that the writers here have decided that the Rainbow Crystal arc will primarily be about the other Scouts working through their love lives; a concept that MIGHT work if they could come up with good ideas on exploring that and they have yet to prove that that’s gonna be the case.   Still, maybe they can succeed with Rei where they failed with Ami and were merely underwhelming with Makoto?  Is this a new leaf for the arc that started off really well, or will we just have to ride this out until we finish up with all this filler?  Let’s find out!!

First two minutes of the episode, and BAM!  Rei’s grandpa gets hit by The Dark Crystal and starts turning into a monster!  No bullshit!  We know that Zoisite is gonna turn SOMEONE into a monster, so might as well get it done upfront!  Unlike all the other times he’s done this though, the transformation doesn’t complete as Grandpa Rei apparently has powers that allow him to resist the Dark Crystal and keep his Rainbow one intact (which I don’t THINK he’s aware is inside him, but I’m not certain about that).  Still, while the attack wasn’t quite what Zoisite wanted, there’s no doubt that the transformation process has begun and that Grandpa Rei will turn into the monster, albeit at a slower pace (similar to Joe the Crane Game Troll from episode 25).  On top of that, this JUST SO HAPPENS to be the night that Grandpa Rei takes on a bum for an apprentice named Yuichiro who at first looks like a lame knock off of Spike from Cowboy Bebop.  What, was Crazy Gramps not enough to carry this episode?

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The plight of the unemployed cosplayer…

I really don’t trust this guy considering he’s clearly got the hots for Rei who is only fourteen and while we have no idea how old this drifter is, he looks WAY too old to be into middle schoolers.  Now for an episode called GRANDPA LOSES CONTROL, there’s not a whole lot of that here as the most we get is a scene or two of him being spry and full of energy (which isn’t all that different from his usual self) while also being a massive prick (again, just like his usual self).  His training of this drifter whose name is Yuichiro consists of George of the Jungle style rope swinging and getting shit upon constantly like he’s Gomer Pyle to Grandpa’s R Lee Ermey.  Oh well.  At least Usagi enjoys his antics.

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“I’m giving you exactly three FUCKING seconds to get off your sorry ass, or I will gouge out your eyeballs and SKULL FUCK YOU!!”     “HA HA HA!  What a loser!  You show him gramps!”

Now this is where things get weird and the whole episode feels off in terms of pacing and plotting.  Rei, whose main shtick is to be mean to Usagi, apparently goes TOO FAR this time when she knocks Usagi over and the other Scouts just bail on this whole situation.  Okay, well at least they bothered to ACTUALLY write Ami and Makoto out of the episode rather than just have them not show up at all, but is it really that hard to have a non-Usagi episode that has all of them in it!?  Even when Usagi isn’t the main character, she still gets second billing over the others; especially here where she’s doing the same thing she did in episode {}; mainly try to get Rei and that creepy ass drifter to hook up.  Oh yeah, that’s another problem here.  Apparently every non-Usagi episode of this arc has to be about the girls either chasing after or being chased by some dude.  That wouldn’t be such a bad thing though if it wasn’t the ONLY type of episode we were getting and if they weren’t so… well, CREEPY!!  Ami’s episode has her being chased by some psychic dude with really dark fantasies about her, Makoto gets TWO episodes to show that she only goes after guys who have no interest in her (an interesting idea that hasn’t been explored all that well), and now we’re supposed to buy that this dumbass who came in off the street with REALLY bad hair is a perfect fit for the head strong Rei!?

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She’ll break his sorry ass in three minutes.

The scene where these two are talking about Rei’s grandpa is really odd as apparently this guy thinks that the old dude’s weird behavior is due to a change in his biorhythms with the onset of Autumn… I don’t know.  It sounds like a lot of bullshit to me.  One, he’s not a doctor (even if he IS, he’s a shitty one if he still ended up a drifter); two, he’s known this guy for a couple of days at the most AND has only known him as the hyperactive grandpa so diagnosing him without a proper medical examination is like going to Web MD.  Spoiler alert; it’s cancer.  This is such an awkward scene as his dialogue (and even Rei’s) doesn’t sound anything like a conversation two people would ACTUALLY have (especially strangers), and I can only chalk this up to a crappy translation of the source material.

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“How was your grandpa today?”     “I cannot tell you.  That’s confidential.”     “Oh come on.”     “No I can’t.  Anyway, how is your sex life?”     “I don’t know, but in another few hours the sun will rise.”

While this… thing that I guess you would call a conversation is happening, Usagi is looking on with great interest (seemingly having forgotten about the shove from earlier) and is swiftly coming up with a plan to get those two to make out.  Oh, and Luna is there but all she can seem to do nowadays I complain.  Remember when she threated to cut Usagi’s face up if she didn’t transform?  I’m not saying she should threaten violence EVERY time Usagi is fucking up, but maybe every once in a while!  This would be an especially good case for that considering that Usagi is using her transformation pen to turn herself into a fortune teller; something Luna highly disapproves of but does nothing to stop.  Fortunately the ruse doesn’t go anywhere as Rei can see right through the phony disguise (some magic pen THAT turned out to be) and reminds her that she already has a guy she’s seeing.  Oh yeah!  I completely forgot about Mamoru!  I mean, I know that’s not going to work out in the end but at least it’s a better idea than settling for this loser.

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She must REALLY have a low opinion of Rei if she wants her hooking up with a homeless man.

Rei gets so upset at Usagi’s shenanigans (rightfully so) that she declares this to be the end of their friendship!  Usagi, completely heartbroken by this development, goes back to her house to cry about it and Luna has to console her in her hour of need.  I can only imagine that Luna wasn’t expecting any of this when she signed up to a mentor to the saviors of the human race, but if you’re stuck with a crappy job you might as well do it to the best of your abilities!

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“How can you be eating right now when we have a crisis on our hands!?”     “Correction:  YOU have a crisis on your hands.  Rei still likes ME!”     “WAAAHHHHH!!”

The daifuku that Luna is happily munching on does manage to raise Usagi’s spirts, but that turns out to be a double edged sword as whenever Usagi is happy she will inevitably act REALLY impulsively.  Case in point, she’s decided that this random plate of daifuku (WHERE DID IT COME FROM!?) is the perfect thing to bring to Rei as a peace offering to repair their friendship!  I’m sure that’s gonna go well, especially considering Rei JUST told her to fuck off maybe an hour or two ago.  Back at the shrine, Gramps is… doing something with fire, Yuichiro is continuing to swing on ropes in an effort to impress Rei, and Rei is in the bath which I’m sure is the setup to some cheesecake action later on.  Zoisite, tired of waiting for Gramps to turn into a monster, goes back and sucker punches him with demon energy; finally pulling the Rainbow Crystal out of him!  The crystal is slowly floating from Gramps to Zoisite’s hand, and… DENIED!  Out of nowhere, Tuxedo Mask comes in for the steal!  Well, not exactly.  He knocks it out of its flight path, but Zoisite is quick enough to sic Evil Grandpa, also known as Jiji, onto Tuxedo Mask as he picks up the crystal and buggers off to the Dark Kingdom!  Tuxedo Mask seems to bail as well so I guess he’s not too concerned about the monster running rampant in this monestary.  The first one to encounter the Jiji is Yuichiro who proceeds to piss his pants and run to Rei’s room.  Oh look!  There’s that cheesecake we were promised!

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I know she has long hair, but was it always that conveniently long?

Rei and Yuichiro start running around the shrine (after she gets dressed obviously, lest we’d be dealing with a MUCH different show) which doesn’t do them much good because they end up getting cornered in one of the rooms.  Yuichiro, being the self-sacrificing fool that he is, declares his undying love for Rei before rushing headlong towards the monster so that he can ACTUALLY die.  Okay, the monster doesn’t kill him (though I’m not sure why) and instead he’s knocked out.  This gives Rei the perfect opportunity to transform into Sailor Mars and properly defend herself… which is why it’s odd that she doesn’t end up doing that.  To be fair, she DOES have magic powers even when she’s NOT a Sailor Guardian, and she does in fact use them here to find out that the monster is in fact her grandpa.  Okay, well she knows now that the monster is in fact her grandpa, so the best move would be to subdue him as Sailor Mars and hopefully get Usagi to Moon Stick Heal his ass, right?  Well she doesn’t do that either and instead runs around for a bit before trying to reason with the beast.  It goes about as well as you’d expect.

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“I thought love was supposed to conquer all!?  DAMN YOU DISNEY!!”

It’s at this point that Sailor Moon comes to save the day and share her daifuku (random thought: Captain America needs to give hard candies to children in the next Marvel movie); one of those obviously having to take precedence of the other.  Well actually, something else takes precedence even above saving the day.  BENNY HILL SHTICK!!

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“WHERE IS THAT SAXAPHONE MUSIC COMING FROM!?”

Eventually Rei manages to put a charm on Jiji which incapacitates him long enough for Usagi to use her Moon Healing Attack and save Grandpa from himself.  So wait; that was an option this entire time!?  She couldn’t have done that before Yuichiro got a concussion or before she nearly got decapitated!?  Oh well, at least things are finally back to normal as the now healed grandpa and the lucky to be alive Yuichiro join Rei and Usagi in eating that daifuku!  Oh, and Rei kisses the guy on the cheek for nearly getting killed which gets Usagi and Grandpa all worked up for no reason.  Not only that, but Ami and Makoto have come back to check in on Rei after the big fight they had earlier and see that the entire place is in disarray; a clear sign that things are getting back to normal!

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“I’m staying out of this one.  How about you Makoto?”     “Hell yeah!  Let’s go back to your place and watch Monday Night Raw!”     “You mean do our homework.”     “Sigh… yeah, I guess…”

It’s disappointing that the Rainbow Crystal arc has gotten so mediocre so quickly, especially considering how great it was at the beginning.  The biggest problem is that when the episodes focus heavily on the other Scouts, they inevitably become about their love life and it’s just not interesting what they come up with.  Ami had a creepy dude following her around, Makoto was trying to break up a relationship so she can fruitlessly pursue an older guy, and now Rei has some random drifter coming on to her and confessing his love after knowing her for what, a week at most?  There’s no reason the show can’t have them be in relationships and have episodes that explore that, but the scenarios they’ve come up with so far in this arc are really poor and do nothing to advance the characters.  At this point, we have to be getting close to the end of the Rainbow Crystal storyline (namely because we’ve run out of Scouts to have episodes on), so at least we can hope that this mini arc ends with a bang rather than fizzling out completely.

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One thought on “Super Recaps: Sailor Moon Episode 30 (Grandpa Loses Control: Rei in Danger)

  1. Bell Lectar

    LOL at Usagi having low opinion on Rei for trying to hook her up with a bum. xD
    And finally an episode that did something meaningful with Rei. I never noticed before how she was there since ep 10 but never had any real focus on her. So much for being Ikuhara’s favorite!
    I really like this subtle characterization this series have. I don’t know what the dub people did to the scene you describe as “almost a conversation” but I figure it had to do with what Rei’s grandfather earlier said. They are each other’s only family, so Rei being a 14yo child must have been terrified of what was happening to him at his age. And as she described all her friends always abandoning her in times of need, this new guy actually recognized her trouble and lamely tried to support her emotionally, which she appreciated because support was exactly what she was longing for, with her friends always leaving her and all.
    I consider characterization of these 3 characters of Mars, Mercury and Jupiter, one of those miracles that could only happen in 90s Japan which was obviously under some kind of a blessing for having made those few shows excellent beyond time. These characters are like the most perfect RPG characters: when faced with moral dilemmas, each would make different choices for different reasons. The more you learn of these 3 the more everything makes sense about them, each bit of new info completing a coherent whole.
    Of course Rei would be nasty to others: because she believes they would leave her with the slightest push. These new friends of her never evern understood what was troubling her, but still value her enough to return on the same day to see what’s up, which I’m sure she’s secretly happy about.
    And aww at that kiss, a true fire personality, doesn’t think before acting on urges. Mere hours away from claiming she already has a BF. At this rate she risks becoming prone to spontaneous adultery when she grows up. xD

    Like

    Reply

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