Welcome to my viewing guide for Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Sailor Stars, the fifth and final season of the original Sailor Moon anime! Sailor Stars fansubs have existed for years, but it was officially released for the first time earlier this year. Here are the episodes to watch and the episodes to skip... although that’s not such a difficult question this time around.
If you’ve made it to this article, then chances are, you’re already familiar with my guides for the other seasons of Sailor Moon. But if not, here’s the brief, standard rundown. In an effort to help people get into the original Sailor Moon anime, I list which episodes are required to follow the plot, which episodes are skippable filler, and which episodes are technically filler but I recommend watching, due to being funny, memorable, or otherwise notable. An important note is that if I label an episode as filler, that does not mean it is necessarily a bad episode - only that you don’t need to watch it to get the full Sailor Moon experience. These guides are specifically for people who are interested in Sailor Moon but don’t want to, or can’t, sink tons of time into watching all 200 episodes of it.
Not Much of a Filler-Reduced Guide
So, you may notice when you scroll down that... there are only four episodes on this list marked as pure filler, whether watching either the Required-only episodes or the Recommended episodes. In other words, technically this isn’t much of a filler-reduced guide at all!
Here’s the thing: much like Sailor Moon R, Sailor Stars opens with a sub-arc that helps to reduce the need for filler episodes later in the season. On top of that, this season is 10+ episodes shorter than the earlier, most filler-heavy seasons. And on top of that, Stars does a much better job at peppering necessary information throughout its episodes.
So although the season is still very slow-moving, it’s for a different reason that previous seasons. Rather than having a lot of skippable filler episodes, instead, it peppers important info around and has more padding within individual episodes. For example, an important conversation or an important scene gets sandwiched within what would otherwise be typical filler fodder. Or the finale, which is padded with a lot of villain monologuing and back-and-forth one-upping.
A guide probably isn’t needed for a season that uses its time better (sort of, at least). But nevertheless, people were asking me whether I would finish my series of guides for Sailor Moon. So here it is! Hopefully it’s helpful just to know that most of the episodes in this season are required.
What you need to know if you skipped Sailor Moon SuperS...
In the preface for my viewing guide for season 4, SuperS, I said that you could skip it and go straight into season 5 without missing anything. I may have oversold that a bit, because the beginning of Stars serves as the real ending to SuperS while also transitioning us into the next season. So you need to watch the opening sub-arc to fully understand Stars... but at the same time, if you didn’t watch season 4, you might be a little lost because those episodes involve the villain from season 4.
Nevertheless, I think season 4 is still very skippable because you only need to know a few things in order to understand this handful of episodes.
First, let’s review. If you’re coming right off of Sailor Moon S, then the last thing you remember is Sailor Moon emerging from the rubble of Mugen Academy with a reborn, infant Hotaru. Hotaru was left with her father, who was recovering from the ordeal. Recall also that Sailor Pluto sacrificed herself to save Uranus and Neptune as their helicopter crashed. At the end of S, Haruka and Michuru ride off into the sunset together.
The story of SuperS focuses on Chibiusa, a mysterious winged Pegasus, and a band of circus-themed villains led by a witch-like queen obsessed with her own youth and beauty. This queen, Nehellenia, is the primary villain of the first sub-arc of season 5, and she’s really the only part of season 4 you need to be familiar with to follow season 5.
You can read up on Nehellenia at her wiki page, but the short summary is that she had been banished inside a mirror a long time ago and needed Pegasus to escape the mirror. During the season’s ending, she captures Pegasus and escapes her mirror. Ultimately she is defeated when Sailor Moon and Sailor Chibimoon banish her back into her mirror realm. She’s a character defined by jealousy of Sailor Moon and a fear of growing old and losing her beauty.
The season 5 sub-arc involving her gives more closure to her character aside from “goes back where she came from.” And aside from being a legitimately good sub-arc that’s worth watching, it also sets up a few important things for season 5, primarily getting Usagi her Eternal Sailor Moon transformation and bringing the Outer Senshi back into the story from where season 3 left off.
The only other thing I can think of to mention is that SuperS introduces the minor, but reoccurring character of Diana, Chibiusa’s guardian cat. Diana is the kitten-daughter of Luna and Artemis. Diana is only very very very briefly shown in Stars (I can’t remember if she even has any speaking lines), but if you see a little grey cat and wonder who it is, there ya go.
If you chose to skip SuperS and start with this season, and this summary is/was not enough to help with the beginning of Sailor Stars, please let me know so I can provide a better description to help others get caught up!
Anyway, let’s move on to the guide!
✮The bare minimum “required” episodes:
167-174, 176, 180-182, 187-191, 193-200.
Total of 25 out of 34 episodes.
✮ Required + all potential recommended episodes:
167-174, 176-182, 184, 187-200.
Total of 30 out of 34 episodes.
Episodes 1-6: Transition from SuperS to Stars
So, these first 6 episodes are the transition episodes I was talking about above. Even though it’s mostly just trying to fill in some of SuperS’s gaps, namely by providing a better ending and by catching up to all the Outer Senshi’s plot and development from the manga, it’s still a well done little sub-arc. It’s full of really fantastic characterization and it gives closure to Chibiusa’s character before she is phased out of the rest of the series.
✮ Episode 1: Required.
✮ Episode 2: Required.
✮ Episode 3: Required.
✮ Episode 4: Required.
✮ Episode 5: Required.
✮ Episode 6: Required.
Episodes 7-15: Sailor Starlights
The season proper starts with a series of episodes that help introduce the main new characters and plot of Sailor Stars. Most of these are required for plot and characterization reasons.
✮ Episode 7: Required.
✮ Episode 8: Required.
Episode 9: Filler. This is a Minako-focused episode, but there is a much better Minako episode towards the end of the season.
✮ Episode 10: Required.
Episode 11: Recommended. This is the first characterization episode for Taiki. No important plot-related info, but important for the character.
Episode 12: Recommended. Like episode 11, this is a characterization episode for Yaten.
Episode 13: Recommended. The only thing important that happens in this episode is that Haruka and Michiru reappear since episode 6. It is skippable if you’re sticking to only required episodes.
✮ Episode 14: Required.
✮ Episode 15: Required, and also a classic.
Episodes 16-22: Chibi Chibi
This portion of the season begins with the introduction of an important character, Chibi Chibi. However, her entrance is one of the few important plot developments for a while.
✮ Episode 16: Required.
Episode 17: Filler.
Episode 18: Recommended. This is probably the funniest episode in this season and definitely a classic.
Episode 19: Filler. The only important thing that happens in this episode is that it’s confirmed that the Starlights’ princess is not Sailor Moon. It’s otherwise completely skippable.
Episode 20: Filler.
✮ Episode 21: Required.
✮ Episode 22: Required.
Episodes 23-27: Conflict Among the Senshi
✮ Episode 23: Required.
✮ Episode 24: Required.
✮ Episode 25: Required.
Episode 26: Recommended. This is the superior Venus/Minako episode.
✮ Episode 27: Required.
Episodes 28-34: Finale
The cliffhanger ending of episode 27 marks the beginning of the end of the season and the series. Although the remaining episodes are very padded and slow-paced, they are all required. I hope you enjoy the ending of Sailor Moon!
✮ Episode 28: Required.
✮ Episode 29: Required.
✮ Episode 30: Required.
✮ Episode 31: Required.
✮ Episode 32: Required.
✮ Episode 33: Required.
✮ Episode 34: Required.
That concludes my filler-reduced filler guides for the original Sailor Moon anime! Thank you for reading!
In summary, here are the viewing lists:
- Required only: 167-174, 176, 180-182, 187-191, 193-200.
- Required + recommended: 167-174, 176-182, 184, 187-200.
I hope that these viewing guides have been helpful to those using them, and as always, if you have any input on how they could be improved, please leave a comment! Happy watching!