Sailor Moon is a Japanese media franchise, including manga, anime, musicals, drama, video games, and various derivative products, created by Naoko Takeuchi in 1992. Each adaptation of the franchise takes up the adventures of Usagi Tsukino, a run-of-the-mill awkward teenager who is actually Sailor Moon, a heroine with magical powers. Fighting evil in the name of love and justice, she is joined by many allies, all under the protection of a planet in the Solar System.
In this Sailor Moon watch order guide, we are going to give you a thorough insight into the anime. You’re going to get all the necessary information, as well as a complete guide to watching the whole series, including the four anime movies that have been aired.
How Many Sailor Moon Seasons and Episodes Are There?
The Sailor Moon anime series debuted on March 7, 1992 and is split into two larger parts. The original anime is simply titled Sailor Moon and has aired from March 7, 1992 to February 8, 1997 with a total of five seasons and 200 episodes.
The series was rebooted on July 5, 2014 and rebranded as Sailor Moon Crystal, which ended on June 27, 2016 after three seasons and only 39 episodes. This means that, in total, there are eight seasons of the show and 239 episodes in total, but Sailor Moon and Sailor Moon Crystal are practically the same show.
How Many Sailor Moon Movies Are There?
As for the movies, they can also be divided based on the two larger anime segments. As far as the original Sailor Moon is concerned, there were three movies in total:
- Sailor Moon R: The Movie (December 5, 1993)
- Sailor Moon S: The Movie (December 4, 1994)
- Sailor Moon SuperS: The Movie (December 23, 1995)
These three movies were additions to the second, third, and fourth anime seasons, respectively, with each of them adding a final story set around each of the season’s endings. As for Sailor Moon Crystal, there were just two movies, which actually concluded the anime series and served as Crystal‘s ending:
- Sailor Moon Eternal (Part 1, January 8, 2021)
- Sailor Moon Eternal (Part 2, February 11, 2021)
So, in total, there are five Sailor Moon movies to watch.
Sailor Moon Chronological Order
In this part, we will focus on the chronological Sailor Moon watch order, providing you with some details on each of the works listed here.
This section will be dealing with the original Sailor Moon anime series.
In the early 1990s, ten thousand years after the destruction of the Silver Millennium, the seal that held Beryl broke, and her evil kingdom, the Dark Kingdom, was reborn. This event triggers the awakening of Luna and Artemis, who lay dormant in outer space, ready to respond in the event of a threat. Realizing that the city of Tokyo, Japan, is the new cradle of the forces of evil, the little cats set out in search of the descendants of the ancient Sailor warriors in order to prevent Beryl’s dark designs.
This is how Luna finally meets Usagi Tsukino, a 14-year-old college girl from the Azabu district of Tokyo6. Usagi is the reincarnation of Sailor Moon, the warrior form of Princess Serenity. Artemis, on the other hand, understands that Minako Aino is the reincarnation of Sailor Venus. Over time, the two cats find the reincarnations of Sailor Mercury (Ami Mizuno), Sailor Mars (Rei Hino), and Sailor Jupiter (Makoto Kino).
Together, they must use their different abilities and magical powers to fight Beryl and his plans to enslave humans and conquer Earth. They can also count on Tuxedo Mask, the reincarnation of Prince Endymion, to help them. Usagi, eventually developing the same feelings as his previous incarnation, soon falls in love with his savior.
Sailor Moon R
Shortly after defeating the Dark Kingdom, Usagi and her friends see Chibiusa, a mysterious little girl from the future, arrive. The Sailor warriors discover that Chibiusa has traveled back in time to help her mother, trapped in the Tokyo of the future. The warriors thus meet Sailor Pluto, guardian of the Gate of Time, and travel to the 20th century. There, they discover an Earth ravaged by the Black Moon sect, new enemies that Sailor Moon must destroy.
Sailor Moon R: The Movie
When he was little, Mamoru had met Fioré, a strange boy who had become a very close friend. The latter was forced to leave, but made a promise to return with roses. A few years later, Mamoru finds Fioré, who has become very strange … and shortly after, the city is invaded by evil alien flowers. Sailor Moon and her friends must step in to protect Earth.
Sailor Moon S
Just weeks after stepping into the future, Sailor Moon must face a new enemy, the Death Busters. Indeed, an evil being by the name of Master Pharaoh 90 arrives from another dimension to install silence on Earth. This intrusion causes the awakening of the Sailor warriors responsible for protecting the solar system from her external enemies, Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune.
Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune seek at all costs to bring up the Grail, a cup of overpowering powers, for only he seems to them capable of preventing the apocalypse from descending on the planet. Thanks to her allies, Sailor Moon manages to transform into Super Sailor Moon and multiply her powers. But the heroine discovers that the body of Hotaru, her new friend, is home to two entities: a minion of Master Pharaoh 90, Mistress 9, and the warrior of destruction, Sailor Satur.
Sailor Moon S: The Movie
Princess Snow Kaguya, an enemy from the far reaches of the galaxy, travels on her comet ship in search of a planet to establish her ice kingdom. She ends up spotting Earth, which she had already coveted centuries ago before her project was aborted by Queen Serenity.
Noting that the Moon is no longer inhabited by the protectors of the Earth, it sends fragments of its comet to the blue planet to prepare for its invasion. These trigger snowstorms all over the world.
One of these fragments is found by Kakeru Ozora, a young astronomer who had detected the strange comet inhabited by Princess Snow Kaguya. For his part, Usagi Tsukino and her friends, Ami Mizuno, Rei Hino, Makoto Kino, and Minako Aino are worried about the disappearance of their little cat Luna.
She was run over by the astronomer Kakeru, while she was uneasy on the road. Luna gradually falls in love with her savior, while Princess Snow Kaguya sends her minions, the Snow Dancers, in search of the missing fragment.
Sailor Moon SuperS
In the fourth arc, Sailor Moon must face off against the Dead Moon Circus and her queen, Queen Nehelennia. Jealous of the supremacy of the Silver Millennium, she seeks to seize the powers of Sailor Moon and the Golden Crystal to become Queen of the Moon and Earth.
Super Sailor Moon and Sailor Chibi Moon meet Helios, guardian of the Golden Crystal and the kingdom of Elysion, from which Tuxedo Mask hails. To face this formidable enemy, Super Sailor Moon reaches its ultimate form and becomes Eternal Sailor Moon.
Sailor Moon SuperS: The Movie
All over the world, while they sleep, children are kidnapped. They are hypnotized by a piece of strange music that leads them straight to the seat of Queen Badiane, the Marzipan Castle.
There, the wicked queen, helped by her four minions Pearl, Poupelin, Banana, and Orangeat, puts the children to sleep forever, whose sweet dreams feed the abyss of nightmares. This strange black hole is growing from night to night, ready at any moment to swallow the whole Earth.
Sailor Moon Sailor Stars
Finally, in the final arc, Sailor Galaxia and her empire, the Shadow Galactica, dreaming of conquering all the planets in the galaxy, invests Earth. Eternal Sailor Moon is aided by three new Sailor warriors from a distant planet, Sailor Star Fighter, Sailor Star Maker, and Sailor Star Healer.
They are also in search of their princess, Kakyû, while a mysterious baby girl, Chibi Chibi, moves in with the Tsukino family.
Sailor Moon Crystal
This section will be dealing with the Sailor Moon Crystal reboot anime series.
Sailor Moon Crystal anime series
Continuing the intrigues of the first story arc of the manga Sailor Moon, the first season of Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Crystal begins in Tokyo. Usagi Tsukino, an unremarkable 14-year-old college girl, discovers that she is Sailor Moon, a vigilante endowed with magical powers, tasked with defending Earth against her mortal enemies, the Dark Kingdom, and then the dangerous Black Moon sect.
She is finally joined by four other young girls, Sailor Mercury, Sailor Mars, Sailor Jupiter and their leader Sailor Venus and it does not take long to fall in love with Tuxedo Mask, a mysterious masked man who saves her from very perilous situations. In the second season, Sailor Moon receives unexpected help from the Space-Time Gatekeeper, Sailor Pluto. She even discovers the existence of her future daughter, Chibiusa.
In the third season, which follows the third story arc of the manga, Sailor Moon and her friends face the Death Busters, enemies from another dimension in order to absorb the planet. This intrusion causes the awakening of two warriors of the outer solar system, Sailor Neptune and Sailor Uranus. Finally joined by Sailor Pluto, these three guardians will try to prevent the rebirth of Sailor Saturn, which could cause an apocalypse.
Sailor Moon Eternal
Picking up where the third season of Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Crystal left off, during the solar eclipse, Usagi, Chibiusa and Mamoru receive a vision from a pegasus named Helios asking for their help and Mamoru feels a pain in his chest. Dead Moon Circus arrives in a flagship and its members conjure a dark barrier around the area where the circus tent is located.
That night, Chibiusa dreams of riding Helios, who gives her a bell, telling her to ring it if she needs him, and that she needs the Gold Crystal to save Elysion. When Chibiusa tries to return to the 30th century with Diana, the dark barrier stops her and warns the Amazoness Quartet, prompting them to send a tiger to investigate.
Usagi and Chibiusa gain new powers, allowing them to transform into Super Sailor Moon and Super Sailor Chibi Moon. The Amazoness Quartet sends some Lemures to fight the two Sailor Warriors, but they quickly destroy them.
Mamoru passes out from the pain in her chest and PallaPalla mistakes Usagi and Chibiusa’s age. The ringleader of the circus, Zirconia, is commissioned by Queen Nehelenia to let the nightmares of the Warriors take over them so that she can obtain the Legendary Silver Crystal.
Sailor Saturn talks to Hotaru from within her and restores her memories of her previous life. Hotaru then gives Haruka, Michiru, and Setsuna their respective crystals, allowing them to transform into Super Sailor Uranus, Super Sailor Neptune, and Super Sailor Pluto, who along with Super Sailor Saturn help the trapped and bound warriors Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, and Venus.
Sailor Chibi Moon, Sailor Moon, and Tuxedo Mask arrive to help, but Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask are mortally wounded by Zirconia, who retires with the Amazoness Quartet. Helios teleports Usagi and Mamoru to Elysion to save their lives with the purifying power they have left. Sailor Chibi Moon and Sailor Saturn chase the Amazoness Quartet and confront it inside their tent, and Sailor Saturn reveals that the Amazoness Quartet has been corrupted by Nehelenia’s nightmare power.
When the Amazoness Quartet begins to remember, Zirconia imprisons them inside spheres and traps Sailor Chibi Moon and Sailor Saturn inside shards of glass, before putting all six of them in Nehelenia’s mirror.
On Elysion, Helios explains to Usagi and Mamoru that the Golden Kingdom existed on Elysion, of which Mamoru, like Endymion, was the prince, and the Golden Crystal is Elysion’s counterpart to the Legendary Silver Crystal of the Silver Kingdom. Usagi realizes that the Gold Crystal is inside her Mamoru as the Legendary Silver Crystal is inside her. Helios sends Usagi and Mamoru back to the surface.
Do You Need to Watch the Sailor Moon Anime in Order?
Since the series does follow a certain timeline, we’d advise you to actually watch Sailor Moon in order. This is the best way to get a hold of the whole story and to know what happened in the series. Just follow the release order and do remember that the initial fillers are both good and important, so try not to skip them.
As far as Sailor Moon Crystal is concerned, we’d advise you to do the same – just follow the release order, but do try to watch Crystal after the original series.
Will There Be More Sailor Moon Anime?
The second part of Sailor Moon Eternal concluded with a “To be continued…” tagline, suggesting that more Sailor Moon anime is on the way. Since then, we haven’t had any official news about the anime, so we don’t know if and when we’ll be seeing some new Sailor Moon material. But, as things stand now, a continuation of the series is highly probable.