I'm at the beginning of re-watching all of Sailor Moon, this time subtitles. I'm in the middle of the Doom Tree arc, which I was originally dreading and possibly thinking of skipping. Then I got to thinking. . .
I sort of realized that the writers had written themselves into a bit of a corner at the end of the first season. They've established that the scouts died, and per Serenity's wish, they were allowed to live the lives of normal girls. So, they don't remember anything they did. At the beginning of R in the manga, we have Chibiusa appear.
Which. . . would have been a bigger shock should no one know about her. So, the writers had to figure out something to help re-establish the idea of the sailor scouts before the future came to visit. If nothing else, to make sure they had some consistency.
Also, I just finished watching the flower watching episode, where Sailor Moon gets her new broach. In the manga, if I remember right, she receives the new power up from the love she has with Mamoru. Well, once again, there's another problem, Mamoru doesn't remember her right now. So, they get to tackle a bit of the growing up Usagi bit. This arc allows her to realize that, she is a soldier, she has to own up to the power she has awakened in her. This is most evident when she is flat out told, until she gives up the dream of being a normal girl, she cannot use her power to fight. I believe this break down of her thoughts and dreams helped her to cope with the idea of being the future Queen of the world.
Another point I think that the writers help to start using, even in this entire season, is the ability for Sailor Moon to forgive, show compassion, and heal. In the first season, she only healed the victims of the Dark Kingdom, including Mamoru. The original baddies of the season are only people she needs to take out. True, the idea was to seal them away, but that is not really a topic that is really mentioned by them. It was always taking care of the Dark Kingdom.
Since I'm not done re-watching this arc, I'm using part of my dub memory here. In this arc, she finds a way for everyone to live happily and does not destroy anyone. I think this is a key part of her personality, and this arc really allows for the writers to show off this ability of hers for the first time. We understand that her main goal is not to just destroy the enemy, but maybe look for another way to help them out. Stop the evil actions, not the people. Which, in turn, is one of the big differences that the Inner scouts and the Outer scouts face when in the S season, but that's a whole other point that probably deserves another topic.
Anyways, those are my thoughts on this arc, which I feel is another greatly hated part of the show for being mostly filler. I think my older self is better able to understand what is going on, that my younger self could not begin to appreciate.