I am currently reading the re-issue of the Sailor Moon manga by Naoko Takeuchi and have decided to review the volumes here. If you do not want to find out what happens in Volume #9 do not read below!
Volume #9 opens with Usagi and Chibi-Usa body switched and Mamoru with a black rose growing in his chest. The Dead Moon Circus has unleashed nightmare-causing Lemures and Ami is the first victim, dreaming that her parents do not really love her. She is awoken from her nightmare by a tiny Sailor Mercury who awakens her to a stronger power. Sailor Moon and Sailor Chibi Moon transform, which restores them to their original bodies, and Helios gives Chibi-Usa a smooch. The whole team decides to try and infiltrate the Dead Moon Circus HQ, which goes pretty badly. Rei is almost lost in the Mirror House, but she is rescued by Phobos and Deimos who awaken her stronger power. Makoto is tormented by an enchanted ring before her new Jupiter power awakens, and interestingly she seems to be the most forthright about actually having other dreams outside of being a Guardian. Sailor Jupiter is one of my favorites because she wants to own small businesses and, in this case, her being aware of her dreams makes her the hardest to deceive. We then go back to Mamoru, who cannot conceal his illness any longer, and Helios appears to explain what is happening. They are all connected to Elysion, in the heart of the planet, which is under attack from the Dead Moon Circus. Helios is currently imprisoned there, which is why he is appearing as a ghost pegasus unicorn. Mamoru has been trying to spare Usagi the pain of worrying, but Usagi reminds him that they are connected, which really he should have known. We then go to Minako where worries abound as she is unable to transform into Sailor Venus. Artemis creepily checks out Minako in the shower and Luna appropriately bites him on the tail as punishment. The next day Minako has a public freakout that leads to her falling under the Dead Moon’s spell and getting wrapped up in a phony idol competition. Once trapped, Artemis has to come to her rescue, but he is in mortal danger as well. It then jumps to the Outer Senshi and their harmonious life raising Hotaru. No longer able to transform they believe their purpose now is to raise Hotaru. Setsuna has sensed the Dead Moon’s presence, as does Hotaru, who awakens everyone’s power. Back with Minako, she is awakened to her power through her connection to Artemis, but the volume abruptly ends here.
Long synopsis! I went on more than I meant to, sorry! I think it’s because I really liked this volume, especially Minako’s struggle as the leader of the Inner Senshi, but feeling vulnerable because she couldn’t transform. I also like the way that the dreams of the Inner Senshi can become nightmares and the way that each Scout awakened was completely different so it didn’t feel formulaic.
I am reviewing these out of order, oops! My review of Volume #10 is here.