Steven Universe: Steven's Lion   Rewatch 
January 2, 2015 5:18 PM - Season 1, Episode 10 - Subscribe

On a mission, Steven is discovered by a mysterious pink lion who follows him home.

Written and storyboarded by Lamar Abrams and Aleth Romanillos.
posted by JHarris (6 comments total)
  • Lion is another mysterious element of Steven's life, and later episodes reveal that he has some connection with Steven's mother Rose Quartz. Even though he's full of secrets, he's also basically a huge kittycat who pals around with Steven. Awww! But if he has a connection with Rose, how come the other Gems don't recognize him? Rose's life gets more and more mysterious....
  • "So, you from around here? I'm just here on business. I really like your pink fur! You're like the cotton candy of the jungle!"
  • P: "Amethyst! That pillow is very dangerous! It needs to be contained!" A: "Yeah yeah, I know what to do with it!" (it becomes the top of a suitcase fort)
  • So far (including more recent episodes up to #35) I don't think we've ever seen Amethyst bubble anything. We see Steven bubble a gem later on, but we've yet to see Amethyst do it.
  • In Fish Stew Pizza is Onion and Ronaldo. Ronaldo is using what appears to be a MacBook. We also meet Kofi and Kiki here for the first time, working in the store. Father Kofi is from Ghana. We find more about them and their family, the Gungas, in Beach Party.
  • Upon finding out that Steven's "ordering for two," Ronaldo does a spit-take: "Steven's pregnant?!" GROAN. We do get an in-show look (through a film of cola) at Ronaldo's blog, Keep Beach City Weird. Steven's face is pictured on it, maybe it's his photo from Cat Fingers? Ronaldo shows off some KBCW buttons. I wonder if you can buy those? A quick Google search suggests no.
  • "Onion! You believe me, right?" NO. ONION WILL REMEMBER THIS SLIGHT.
  • They take the Desert Glass, a Gem artifact that can create stone out of sand, out of the desert, back to their home... on the beach. Thanks for not bubbling it Amethyst.
  • This is a good place to remark at how the music ramps up the tension in scenes like the sandstorm on the beach here, and during the later stages of Steven's cat problem in Cat Fingers.
  • Apparently, the Desert Glass is a method of Gem construction. Sometimes we hear about something as being "Gem powered," as with the artifact in Serious Steven. What does that mean? Mirror Gem/Ocean Gem reveals that at least some of the Gems used for "power" are in fact living entities who might not be happy about being used that way. What does this mean about Gem technology? Are all Gem artifacts like that?
  • (Pearl bubbles the pillow.) P: "We should have done this in the first place." A: "In my defense, I forgot."
  • Pearl, on Lion: "Are we really going to let him keep that?" Garnet: "We kept Amethyst."
  • So, Lion. From a story construction perspective, Lion's purpose is to push Steven closer to the unknowns of Rose's life. He's kind of an arbitrary source of mystery, and so long as hangs around Steven those mysteries can just crop up. Later it becomes evident that he can understand some things Steven says, but maybe not all.

posted by JHarris at 5:22 PM on January 2, 2015

I've been posting these at a pretty rapid clip lately, but it's about time for me to slow down at this as I prepare to resume my primary FanFare mission: MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER. I will finish up the rest of the early eps (there are some great ones coming up, esp. Steven the Sword Master and Lion 2), but at a slower pace.
posted by JHarris at 5:24 PM on January 2, 2015

But if he has a connection with Rose, how come the other Gems don't recognize him?

Lion is a unique manifestation of Steven's gem power.

Lion Spoiler alert:

Lion also seems to carry some amount of Rose's knowledge.
posted by isthmus at 9:15 PM on January 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

State of the project report --

So, I've been going through the later episodes, now that the edge of the obsession has dulled a bit (replaced with a bit of Regular Show, of all things). It's still there, I just can see it in better perspective now. I think the show does steadily increase in quality throughout the first half of the season. If I had to pick highlight episodes: 1-6 Cat Fingers, 1-16 Steven The Sword Fighter, 1-17 Lion 2: The Movie, 1-20 Coach Steven, 1-21 Joking Victim, 1-23 Monster Buddies, 1-24 An Indirect Kiss, 1-25+26 Mirror Gem + Ocean Gem, 1-28 Space Race, 1-30 Island Adventure, 1-32 Fusion Cuisine and 1-35 Lion 3: Straight to Video.
posted by JHarris at 6:46 AM on January 3, 2015

(There's a lot of Pearl in there, but the other two Gems haven't had as many episodes.)
posted by JHarris at 7:06 AM on January 3, 2015

It did cross my mind that Lion might be a Lyra's Pantalaimon/Haplo's Dog externalisation of the soul, but it somehow seems too independent-minded for that.

I loved that Lion stayed at the end of this episode, it seemed so much like a one-and-done.

Fun [super-longshot] Fact: Aslan is a Lion.
posted by comealongpole at 5:28 PM on August 22, 2016

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