Did Mamoru Meet Usagi In the Hospital As a Child?

Did this actually happen?

Did this actually happen?

Ever since starting this blog, I’m always very careful to try to avoid ever saying something stated or depicted within the anime or manga is either a lie or didn’t happen, at least not without compelling proof to the contrary. Once you start going down the rabbit hole of saying that “Maybe Usagi was lying when she said she was 150cm!” or that “Makoto is probably just estranged from her family,” you really can’t say anything definitive about the series since all of your proof is suspect.

But sometimes, the situation can justify a deeper analysis. Such as, for example, Usagi and Mamoru’s purported “first meeting” in the Sailor Moon R movie. So, did they really meet as kids?

Mamoru has a sense of fashion??

Mamoru has a sense of fashion??

Before we can really talk about anything else, it’s worth noting that the Sailor Moon movies are really in a continuity all their own — their stories fit in loosely with the overarching gist of the season in which they take place (particularly with regard to the characters that appear), but obviously don’t take place within the internal canon of the anime.

In the Sailor Moon R movie, for example, ChibiUsa’s existence pretty clearly locks down the time frame in which this story should take place. But if they’re in the middle of a protracted battle against the Black Moon Clan, why doesn’t it come up? There’s no mention of Sailor Pluto and ChibiUsa comfortably refers to Sailor Moon as her mom, so we’re kind of stuck with a story full of details cherry-picked as convenient.

Oh, and the fact that Fiore’s story is admittedly a retelling of the Cardian arc pretty much seals the case.

But that doesn’t mean that these “out of band” side stories should be completely disregarded. After all, the characters rarely make mention of past enemies in either the manga or the anime, so we shouldn’t be too surprised that they don’t talk about the Black Moon while fighting against Xenian.

Even if the villain arcs in the movies themselves suspect, I still think we can take away details about their personal lives, such as Ami’s allergy to love letters. Or, as many people would point to, Usagi and Mamoru’s first meeting as children.

But did they really meet?

The Chiba Family (Act 7, vol. 2, p. 53)

The Chiba Family (Act 7, vol. 2, p. 53)

First off, what we see depicted probably can be mostly taken at face value. I think we are seeing Mamoru’s experience in the hospital as a young child, having just suffered through the trauma of losing his parents. We know that he’s suffering, and will continue to suffer, from amnesia and hallucinations.

Usagi, however, is a different story. I personally don’t think she could have been there to meet Mamoru in the hospital, for a multitude of reasons.

Our first main problem is her age and the fact that she’s running around, unsupervised, at a hospital. I know that Kenji may not be the most attentive father, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask him to try to keep an eye on his only daughter. We know that Shingo is in the 5th grade,1 so that places him at around 10 to 11 years old.

Usagi brings Mamoru a Rose (Sailor Moon R Movie)

Usagi brings Mamoru a Rose (Sailor Moon R Movie)

Since we know that Mamoru’s parents met their fate on his birthday in the manga2 and have no reason to believe this isn’t the case in the anime, that means that Shingo was born in the late summer or fall, and thus after Usagi’s birthday. So! That means she must have been 3 to 4 years old at the time Shingo was born.

Even if we were to accept that Kenji were an awful parent and let his 3-4 year old child run around on her own with a bundle of flowers, we still need to contend with the fact that maternity wards are generally placed in different parts of the hospital – often on different floors – to keep germs at bay due to baby and mother’s weakened immune systems.

So if we accept that not only did Usagi escape from her painfully inattentive father and took his expensive roses with her and got so lost that she ended up in an entirely different ward… we’re good then, right? Usagi and Mamoru met!

Unfortunately, I still would say no. “Why, you awful doubting Thomas, do you still refuse to believe they met??” I can hear you say. Well, it’s simple.

There are no substantial cliffs to fly off of in Tokyo.

Seeing as we know for a fact that Mamoru and his parents went flying off a cliff in the manga (and have no counter-evidence in the anime), I think we have to assume that they went for a drive out in the country. I don’t know about you, but it seems pretty unlikely to me that after recovering the young boy from a car with the remains of Mr. and Mrs. Chiba, they would then immediately transport him back to central Tokyo. As you recall, he has no other family.

THIS is why you should buckle up

THIS is why you should buckle up

Going back all the way to the beginning of this article, though, you’ll recall that I mentioned that I try to avoid saying anything written or shown in the series is not true… and I think no differently here.

You see, while I think that Usagi and Mamoru didn’t meet in the strictest sense of the term, I think that what he saw here was a vision of Usagi. As you recall, in the manga at least, Mamoru is haunted by dreams of a woman telling him to find the Silver Crystal.3 In the anime, he’s even worse off, suffering from amnesia from before the accident (retrograde amnesia),4 in addition to anterograde amnesia,5 i.e., losing track of time and failing to create new memories.

Mamoru himself admits that he thought that Fiore was just a figment of his imagination when he was a young child, alone in the hospital. It makes me wonder what other hallucinations he had seen while he was there.

Seeing as how it doesn’t make any practical sense that Usagi would have really been there and that the accident seems to have woken something up inside Mamoru connecting him to his past life (and ultimately leading to the creation of his alter ego, Tuxedo Mask), I think it makes the most sense that,6 in this time of despair as he was about to lose his one and only friend, that his heart reached out… and Usagi responded, appearing as a vision in his hospital room, possibly from another hospital where her mother had given birth.

But Jason!” I can hear you retort. “How did he get the rose, then??

And that’s a great question. But considering Tuxedo Mask (and Moonlight Knight!) manages to conjure up roses all the time, I’m okay with assuming that being reunited with Usagi, even briefly, awoke something inside him and allowed him to bring up a rose to give to Fiore.

Mamoru – a serial regifter

Mamoru – a serial regifter

So, there you have it! What do you think? Does it make more sense that Usagi and Mamoru actually did meet on that one fateful day in the hospital, and that Usagi did give him a rose, which was to alter signify his role as Tuxedo Mask in addition to binding Usagi, him, and Fiore together? Or was this Usagi simply a vision, answering the calls of Mamoru’s lonely heart?

I could actually make a pretty good counter-point to debunk my own theory, but I’d actually love to hear what other people think. If you’re really interested in the counter-argument, let me know and I’ll reply in the comments when I have some time. Either way, it’s definitely interesting!


References:

  1. Though one anime reference book puts him in the 4th grade, I think we can ignore that since I’ve only seen it in one place; see conflicting media putting him in 4th and 5th grade in the anime
  2.  See Act 1, vol. 2 of the original manga
  3.  See vol. 2, pp. 53-54 of the original manga
  4.  See Retrograde Amnesia (Wikipedia)
  5. See Anterograde Amnesia (Wikipedia)
  6. Yes, I’m aware of Occam’s Razor. And yes, I still think this makes more sense than her being in the hospital that day

8 comments

  • …goddammit i just went through 32 pages of my own tumblr’s mamoru chiba tag looking for the lengthy analysis i went into on this and couldn’t find it. therefore, i’m gonna try to reconstruct my counter-argument, even though now i actually prefer your theory about the projection — or possibly that mamoru was sending /usagi/ one, since he’s the psychic, not her? BUT!!

    so, he’s 17 (or potentially 16 and turning 17 shortly, but that’s an easier argument for the manga, given mentions of what season stuff is going down in, like ‘late Spring’) in Classic when she’s 14; shingo’s three years younger than Usagi is, and figuring Shingo was born in late summer, and the fact that mamoru had no head bandage by the time baby usagi came to give him a rose, i’m figuring Mamoru’s not in the hospital he was taken to from the accident. i figure he was put in a hospital actually /in tokyo/ to figure out if there was anything could be done for the amnesia, and monitoring for any other problems, given his being a trust fund baby (see his apartment in the manga jfc) and the requisite search for any surviving family of his before putting him in an orphanage.

    also given that fiore seems to have been with him for at least a week, and when mamoru found fiore he was actually ALREADY not bandaged and could run out of the hospital in the rain to drag fiore in– it wasn’t the same hospital from when he had the accident, it’s probably LATE august, and i can tell you for a fact that even the most attentive of parents can legit lose a determinedly curious three year old who wanders off in a large place.

    i also don’t think she was necessarily lost, because tbh mamoru can /find usagi when she’s in trouble/ later on — the severe emotional distress he was in would very likely have been a beacon for her to home in on and want to fix.

    i do imagine that when her parents found her she was in A LOT OF TROUBLE hahaha.

  • R Movie is the one that actually seems like it does fit the most comfortably into the anime timeline (somewhere between 77-81) with the only potential issues being minor things not mentioned. However if you follow the anime timeline there are apparently often weeks in between some of the Black Moon attacks which sort of makes sense considering they often concerned things like actually setting up stores. Plus from the bath tub scene we know Esmeraude was potentially slacking off around this time, For that matter the girls pretty rarely actually discuss their enemies in their free time instead of talking about their lives, loves, Chibiusa, etc… So not mentioning the BMC does not at all seem unusual for a couple days. For that matter why would they mention Pluto? How many episodes was she mentioned in between the time they saw her projected from Luna-P until they actually met her in 81? Which leaves only Chibiusa’s lone mother reference which is not necessarily proof that she knows…but then again as I think I’ve stated and made the case for before I’m pretty sure anime Chibiusa always knew that Usagi was her mother just like her manga counterpart with the sole difference that the anime version just didn’t know she was also Sailor Moon (or the identity of the Sailor Guardians).

    On a different note in episode 34 we see Mamoru’s family’s car fly off a cliff too so that is definitely anime canon as well. But with that said why do we have to assume that Shingo was born in Tokyo? I mean Usagi’s family could have just as easily been in the countryside for some reason like visiting family when the labor pains unexpectedly hit? Or once he was out of critical condition could Mamoru have been transferred to a larger Tokyo city hospital to see a brain specialist after they learned of his amnesia?
    As far as Usagi being left alone to wander off, that doesn’t seem out of the realm of possibility in a busy hospital. I could see plenty of scenarios for Kenji to distracted just for a minute talking to a doctor, or a family member, or even using the restroom where an 3-4 year old could very easily suddenly wander off especially if she was suddenly being pulled by an magical connection telling her to be somewhere else? (so not a pure coincidence she found her way no matter how far away the two departments were located).

  • Question:
    At the end of Season 1, there’s kind of an odd sequence where Mamoru is dying. At first, he’s a child in the hospital, and if I’m not mistaken, little Usagi comes up to him there. Then they immediately turn into their current ages and she cares for him.

    It looks a lot like this scene in the movie. (In the edited English version, it’s moved to the end of the episode, indicating that Serena meets Darien at the hospital after the battle and comforts him, I guess as a volunteer.) But in the original, it’s just at a weird time in the episode, and nothing is explained. We don’t seem to know if he’s just imagining her being with him during the accident, and again as he’s dying. Or what.

    Does this extra scene shed any light on the scene being discussed in the movie?

    • Hmm… it sounds familiar, but I’m afraid I don’t remember the scene off hand. I remember it clearly from the dub, but I don’t recall where or how it fits into the original anime.
      Do you happen to have an episode number for the scene? I’d be more than happy to take a look at the Japanese episode.

      (I’m 99.999% confident there’s zero connection to the movie, however. The movie was made a year later and this was probably just a one-off dream sequence)

  • It’s the very last episode of Season 1. Endymion/Mamoru is dying or regaining his memories. Suddenly, the scene cuts away to him as a child in the hospital. In the DiC version, they change that scene to the very end of the episode, and I think they cut out the child part, and just have it look like Serena meets Darien at the hospital at their current ages. In the Japanese version, it’s right around the time he’s dying.

    I thought maybe that the scene in question may have backed up some of the validity to the movie (I know the movie comes later, but I thought it could be connected in the sense that the movie drew from this scene? Or just another reason to believe they did meet when they were young?)

    • This scene?
      Mamoru, ep. 46
      Usagi, ep. 46

      Usagi is way too old (same age as in the series) and Mamoru way too young (10 to 12-ish?) for this to be modern times or back when he had the accident. Though, to be fair, the series probably wasn’t 100% sure when he had the accident when they animated this scene. In either case, Usagi’s too old.

      So this has to be more of a symbolic scene than anything else. When he was in his darkest moments, Usagi was still connected to him.

  • I guess so. I just thought it was weird to throw that scene in there. And it reminded me of the hospital scene in the movie.

    • It feels like a scene that sounds really good in the script and probably had a lot of subtext behind it, but when actually animated (and without adding any sort of explanations) just leads to more questions than it answers.

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