Sailor Moon Crystal Act 16: Abduction – Sailor Mercury (SPOILERS)
I think that this is one of the best episodes so far of Crystal, and it’s also one of the most blender-y episodes. We see things from the manga, the 90’s anime, and from Crystal itself (because it is going to have its own original content).
The team is having to deal with Mars being kidnapped, and Usagi lashes out at Chibi-Usa (who was lurking nearby as she usually is). Chibi-Usa winds up in a park where Luna finds here and brings Mamoru to her. We see the classic anime scene with the Tuxedo Mask puppet, telling her that Sailor Moon is invincible.
We now also have to deal with Berthier, who takes over after Koan is killed. She has water powers just like Mercury, and is gunning for her right from the start. We also see Ami’s love of chess in this episode, like the Ami v. Berthier episode from the anime. But we also get some more backstory, abut how Ami’s father taught her chess and swimming, and we see glimpses of her dad, something that never happened in the original anime (her parents are divorced). Berthier outright calls out Ami for a chess match, which… nobody finds weird except for Ami? Berthier’s standing there in a skimpy bathing suit like suit, and is just like “oh, I’m one of the best chess players in the world, so I’m going to play a junior high girl on national TV.”
One cool thing is that Berthier uses her Black Crystal earring as a dousing rod, which can find more than just water. She’s using it to find moves in the chess game (where are the officials??? I call cheating!). She also wants to break Ami’s spirit, by pointing out that everyone she’s ever loved will leave her, and it’s working – until Usagi acts like Usagi and totally screams and shouts for Ami, while embarrassing Makoto and Minako. But that’s what Usagi does – she unwaveringly supports her friends, and she doesn’t give a shit who knows it. With the support of her friends, she beats Berthier. But Berthier’s a total sore loser and sends a bunch of droids after them. She wants to know where Rabbit is, but Ami won’t give up Chibi-Usa (who is lurking right there AGAIN). The other Senshi come and Sailor Moon kills Berthier handily, but Mercury is still caught in the water sphere, and Rubeus takes her away. 2 down, 2 to go.
I’d give this episode a 9 out of 10. Great pacing, quality animation all the way through.