Of the planetary Senshi on Sailor Moon, Sailor Saturn is the most unique. No one wants her to appear and that’s only because she can destroy the universe. No biggie. While Sailor Moon herself has some fairly godlike abilities, she has yet to have the ability to do anything at universe levels.
Sailor Pluto, while capable of stopping time, can’t make a habit of it for some fairly concrete reasons. Thus, Saturn is the most destructive of the Senshi and unlike the others she is also expected to act without question. When she transforms she will restart reality and it’s apparently unavoidable. Because of this, she is the only Sailor Senshi that Sailors Uranus and Neptune are willing to kill.
Saturn resides within Hotaru Tomoe, the daughter of Dr. Souichi Tomoe, one of the villains of the show’s third season. Though to complicate matters further, Hotaru holds inside a dark power as well making her even more of a target. If Saturn did destroy the universe it would be a shorter show though how she is stopped is important.
Sailor Saturn’s Disappearance
The resolution causes her to disappear from the show for a season, though she returns in Sailor Stars. Befriended by Chibiusa (Sailor Chibi Moon) she is willing to sacrifice so much for her friend. Stars will be the only season where Saturn is an accepted member of the team. She is also younger than the rest of the Senshi except Chibi Moon. After an initial conflict that brings in Saturn she does not take part in the daily lives of the Senshi even in Stars, only returning for the final battle.
Hotaru’s character development is crammed into her Super appearances where despite being sickly and housed by a super villain, she is still able to show who she is. Nonetheless, she doesn’t get to have the adventures the rest of the cast does. She often appears to advance the plot, but does not get to have the development the other eight planet Senshi do get.
Sailor Saturn’s appearance in the anime is different from her comrades as well. While she wears a purple fuku and crimson bow and back ribbons, her shoulder pads resemble feathered wings, and has a distinct design on her choker. Like all Outer Senshi she has a weapon, though her Silence Glaive is a menacing blade that also can bring about the aforementioned universe destruction depending on how she uses it.
The Manga Arcs
In the manga, which has less filler and monster of the day plots than the anime, she is also present in the Super S arc of the story, the Stars arc, and has a key role to play in assisting the other Senshi. This plot line will likely surface in Sailor Moon Crystal if the revived series ever moves beyond the third season. Saturn doesn’t have a great deal of development in the manga either though she still gets a relative good amount of appearances.
Saturn was also present in the manga at the end of the Silver Millennium which destroyed the original Moon Kingdom, as she destroyed everything after Beryl’s attack. She was not present prior to that awakening though. Her character has rarely been portrayed having a normal life.
Saturn in both versions, also ages back and forth, though I won’t spoil that whole process entirely. But as such she is a character often in transition, from an innocent but also corrupted girl to someone trying to start a life after the events of Super.
Her personality is shaped by the traumas she has been exposed to and the friendships she has made. She is an incredibly complex character, who deserved more showcasing of how she was growing. With Sailor Moon largely as a Senshi dedicated to life, and Saturn as one connected to death, they are both having to develop as people in a short time amidst essentially a giant war against evil. It would be great to see more of how Hotaru faces this.
What do you like about Sailor Saturn? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter @geekgalsco!
If you’re a huge Sailor V fan as well, check out David’s previous #MoonieMondays blog post about Sailor V!
Featured image credit: Toei Animation