Meet Ami Muzino. She allegedly has a 300 IQ, but doesn’t seem to have many friends. Why is Luna so interested in connecting her with Sailor Moon?
We begin this episode of Sailor Moon Crystal highlighting Ami Muzino, the best student at Usagi’s school. After writing out a baffling mathematical proof for her class, Ami learns she got top marks on her latest exam. As the other students gossip about the brainiac, Usagi notices Ami has become somewhat isolated from the rest of the students.
Meanwhile, we learn that the bad guy from last week is named Jadeite and he is working on behalf of Queen Beryl, who in turn is working on behalf of her own dark master. They are seeking the Legendary Silver Crystal and sucking up energy in the meantime to keep Beryl’s bosses happy. Jadeite summons a new monster to cause mischief in Tokyo.
Luna reminds Usagi that her quest is to awaken her allies and find the Moon Princess. Usagi would rather not be chased by demon monsters. As Usagi naps, Luna starts researching Ami. Later, Luna forces Usagi and Ami to interact, which sparks a friendship between the girls. Usagi takes Ami to the arcade to play the new Sailor V game.1 Ami proves to be a savant at the game and her prize is a blue pen with a fancy cap. Usagi wants a prize and shakes the machine until a pink pen with a crystal cap pops out.
Ami spends her time after school going to Crystal Seminar2, but that is where Jadeite’s monster has set up shop. The Bad Teacher uses software that brainwashes its users and sucks out their energy.3 Usagi finds the software and gives it a go, but stumbles upon the subliminal track while pushing buttons at random. It turns out her pen from the video game is a magic disguise generator, which Usagi uses to bust into Ami’s seminar.
At this point, the monster has revealed itself to Ami, but Ami’s pen gets thrown away. Usagi transforms in front of Ami (with Luna’s permission) and tries to fight the monster. This awakens Ami as Sailor Mercury, who can transform when she retrieves her pen. Sailor Mercury fills the room with mist, Tuxedo Kamen rescues Sailor Moon, and the Moon Tiara Boomerang dispatches the monster.
How Did This Match the Original Sailor Moon?
This episode is a reinterpretation of Japanese episode 84 / American episode 55. The adversarial relationship between Usagi and the man in the tuxedo begins to develop here, following an unfortunate littering incident.
Quite a bit, actually. First, the filler episodes in the original version are completely bypassed, other than Usagi receiving the transformation pen. In the original version, Luna suspected Ami of being an enemy rather than an ally and there was no prize offered following the performance at the arcade. Sailor Mercury gets a full transformation sequence, including the battle cry “douse yourself in water and repent.” Her attack is no longer called Shabon Spray6: it is now called Mercury Aqua Mist.
At this point you can go all the way up to episode 9 of the Japanese series (episode 6 American) and not enter the next chapter of the story, where we will probably meet the next Sailor Soldier.