Steven Universe: The Return/Jail Break
March 12, 2015 3:32 PM - Season 1, Episode 48 - Subscribe

Peridot comes to Earth in an action-packed two-part episode of Steven Universe.
posted by Small Dollar (43 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
posted by Small Dollar at 3:33 PM on March 12, 2015 [5 favorites]

Uh, well.

So Garnet fusion... confirmed. As I expected, fusion is fairly uncommon for homeworld gems, but is the closest analog Gems have to human intimacy. Also seems like the homeworld doesn't care much about Earth. Peridot is the only one whose duties actually involved reestablishing contact with Earth and she had to beg Jasper to come along as muscle. At the very least this means we don't have to expect reinforcements for a while. We just have our two antagonists on earth to deal with. Peridot primarily needs to be neutralized, since she can readily repair the homeworld warp and bring lots of badness down on Earth.

I didn't expect such a straightforward conflict, but Steven's unique abilities did in fact play a role. Also, Jasper said "Some lost, defective Pearl", which sounds like the kind of thing you'd say about, oh I dunno, a wayward mass-produced soldier. W...was Kindergarden a place for making Pearls? IS AMETHYST AN OVERCOOKED PEARL OH GOD

If long-lived fusions are in danger of losing their individuality, could this happen to Jasper/Lapis? I feel like Lapis will not be able to contain Jasper for that long. I really want Lapis to join the Crystal Gems, although I feel like her overall arc is aimed at "noble sacrifice".

I still think the Crystal Gems' best bet to fight off the homeworld are all the bubbled gems in their temple. If they can be healed, or at least tamed, then poof, ready-made army.

Jasper is certainly the most androgynous gem we've yet encountered. Was getting a major Sailormoon villain vibe from her. Also the mention of Yellow Diamond, which confirmed my secret suspicion that the Gem high commander would be Diamond. Now amending that suspicion to there being a council of different Diamond colors.

I am sad this season is almost over, but three seasons! I hope they maintain a good ratio of small-scale slice of life type episodes and grand space opera ones.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 4:07 PM on March 12, 2015 [2 favorites]

Unrelated thoughts:
This was pretty incredible. The Ruby/Sapphire/Garnet sequence really put me in mind of the band THEESatisfaction (previously).

I really feel for Greg, that line about "running out of family" was so rough.

Jasper's weapon being a big headbutting helmet hammer is hilarious.

I really hope Lapis comes back.
posted by Peccable at 4:20 PM on March 12, 2015 [4 favorites]

Additional thoughts: I think Ruby and Sapphire are interesting name choices since up until now every Gem has been a semi-precious stone, some (Sugilite, for instance) being pretty obscure. So I figured precious stone names would be reserved for Gem high command. There's plenty of red and blue Gems (Agate and Turquoise, for instance) that could have been used to maintain the semi-precious gem convention.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 4:41 PM on March 12, 2015


posted by books for weapons at 4:50 PM on March 12, 2015 [2 favorites]

Mr.Encyclopedia that's really interesting. However, I do want to note that Jasper said fusion is for 'weak gems.' Although I guess you don't have to be martially powerful to command.
posted by Strass at 6:12 PM on March 12, 2015

MST3K Club is going, will chime in after my soul's been killed by a second showing of a Lippert movie.
posted by JHarris at 6:15 PM on March 12, 2015

posted by 1970s Antihero at 6:19 PM on March 12, 2015

Re: Ruby/Sapphire, I think they probably just reached for what would be most obvious. I like their designs, though.

So: this show is better than Adventure Time. I started watching for the Rebecca Sugar Connection, and have long felt the two shows were complimentary facets of much the same thing, but... This show is definitely better. Adventure Time is hugely creative and stumbles into brilliance, but it's obviously written as it goes along without any real rules. That's fine--but this show feels written. It obviously has clear ideas of where it's taking its characters and plots, and that's way more enjoyable for me. It's been really great seeing its world and characters unfold so gradually, but with plenty of foreshadowing in hindsight.

Totally hoping Lapis eventually joins the Crystal Gems, too.
posted by byanyothername at 6:21 PM on March 12, 2015 [10 favorites]

Considering all I can really get down about this is, "OMGOMGOMG," I'll leave it at this: Can they win a flippin' Annie now?
posted by ob1quixote at 8:04 PM on March 12, 2015 [3 favorites]

I just want to shake everybody I know by the shoulders and shout "THIS IS A SHOW ABOUT CONSENT" at them. The underlying theme is consent! How amazing is that?! A show you can watch with your kids and talk about consent! How it's complicated, how it can be manipulated, how it can be amazing, how it can be scary, how you can seem to give consent without really knowing and how it can turn out okay but it can also turn out poorly. There's the other world-saving stuff about bravery and family and all that, but the Gem twist is such a rich source of stories about different kinds of relationships and interactions people can have that I'm not sure I've ever seen done before. Certainly not with this much nuance and style, and certainly not in something I would eagerly recommend to anyone over 9 years old.

Estelle's song knocked it out of the park. Those lyrics might as well be a queer anthem and then you've got the melodic refrain from the theme song with her vocals tripping along on top. It felt like a climb.

The incredible cuteness of Ruby and Sapphire was unexpected, though I'd seen screenshots of the next episode preview. But I'm curious, because up until now all the Gems have had their gem in a central point on the body. Garnet's two hands were symmetrical but this was the biggest indicator of her fusion status. I was expecting the gems to be in a different spot on Ruby and Sapphire than one of their hands, because of the central line thing. Have we seen any other Gems where their gem placement isn't along that line? Jasper's is the nose, Lapis' is the upper back... Maybe Ruby and Sapphire are especially "weak" because of their asymmetrical gem placement?

I've long suspected that the Gems are produced in fleets and they're all the same Gem at a time. I think Pearl is a particularly wonky Pearl but also it could be that Pearls are produced a little differently because pearls, as a gem IRL, aren't really gems at all. This has always bothered me.

What gem was Jasper and Lapis' fusion supposed to be?
posted by Mizu at 8:59 PM on March 12, 2015 [7 favorites]

Everything about both of these episodes was great. "E-vac-U-ate!" was a nice chuckle, and Steven's voicemail was darkly hilarious.

The way Steven escaped from the energy cell reminded me of the scene in Titan A.E. where Cale escapes from the Drej mothership, another animated thing where eusocial energy beings want to wipe out humans and a kid with an absent parent holds the key to humanity's survival.

"Stronger Than You" was amazing, that's why you should hire legitimate pop stars to do voice work on your cartoons. When Disney hired bonafide Broadway types to work on their stuff, it was wildly popular and beloved, but this seems like the first time someone's gotten a performer of this caliber to work in TV animation.
posted by Small Dollar at 9:05 PM on March 12, 2015 [1 favorite]

One thing on the Subreddit I saw that seems actually plausible is the symbol in the middle of the floor where garnet and jasper face off for the rematch. It's a yellow triangle, a blue triangle and a white triangle. Since Yellow Diamond has been named, there's probably also a blue diamond and a white diamond. Peridot and Jasper also have yellow triangles on their bodies, so Yellow Diamond is likely their direct superior. Also the triangles line up well with the triangle-cheated enemy in the mural depicting Rose's stand for earth.

I get a sort of crumbling empire vibe from the homeworld, mainly because of the way they eventually gave up on Earth. Reminds me of Rome eventually giving up on Britannia, or the empire from Foundation which never straight-up collapsed rather than slowly regressed. Unfortunately it seems Gem tech has come a long way since they abandoned Earth so it's probably more about withdrawing and then forgetting about it up until Peridot was tasked with investigating and reopening Earth for business. The homeworld probably has the resources to crush Earth if they decided it was worthwhile, or necessary.

I think Rose made Steven because she saw him as the prototype for the future of both humanity and gemkind, combining their best features. But I'm curious if her choice in timing was because she thought the Earth was safely forgotten enough, or if she thought it was the only way to oppose the homeworld's imminent return.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 9:33 PM on March 12, 2015

Yeah gosh so wow this has become my favorite show for sure.

So presumably it is Steven's half-human side that allows him to pass through Gem-proof barriers. He's pretty much unstoppable. Sneak attack him (like an airbag) and he instinctively bubbles up. Attack him head-on and he manifests a shield. Put him in a box and he walks right out.

The color work was as usual amazing. The green cast of the approaching ship, then the washed out light of it burning... so pretty.

Garnet comes back with more symmetrical pants. And I think a slightly pinker palette?

How many more gems are trapped here? Maybe Peridot, Jasper and Lapis aren't the only new Gems on Earth...
posted by books for weapons at 9:43 PM on March 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm stoked that the Garnet-is-a-fusion theory was right on the money.

I can't get over how good these two episodes were. I'm overwhelmed with the greatness of this show. I'll be back when I'm more coherent.
posted by sleeping bear at 9:48 PM on March 12, 2015 [3 favorites]

I first posted this to the subreddit a few days ago, but I'm kind of taken with it and hope it's a type of situation that happens in the show, which it might now:

Wouldn't it be fun if, in the aftermath of the season finale, Peridot got stranded on Earth with the others?

Peridot (wearing a mustache): "Day 17 of my exile... I've managed to blend in with the natives to try to discover something more about their heathen ways. Maybe I can find some local means to repair the Galaxy Warp and return--"
Mr. Fryman: "Er, miss? Are you going to order?" (There's a line of customers behind her.)
Peridot: "Er? Uh! Yes I have an order human! You are to report to the beach with any gem-reactant materials you may have at 18 hundred hours!"
Mr. Fryman (groans): "If you don't want any food miss please stand to the side. NEXT!" (to himself) "This is like that time that Quartz lady ordered a sack of potatoes."
Peridot: "Maybe I can find some materials for constructing a ship in this amusement place--"
(Mr. Smiley is standing by the gates to Funland with his arms crossed, blocking her way, by a sign reading "NO GEMS.")

And so on.
posted by JHarris at 10:19 PM on March 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


Here is the post on Surasshu's tumblr (the person who does a lot of the amazing music) with some of their commentary.

" Rebecca told us to capture the feeling of “there’s no way she could lose”. "

" (for those of you keeping score: where Pearl is piano, Garnet is represented by synthbass) "

I am keeping score! Thank you Surasshu!
posted by Mizu at 10:33 PM on March 12, 2015 [4 favorites]

JHarris: "Mr. Smiley is standing by the gates to Funland with his arms crossed, blocking her way, by a sign reading "NO GEMS.""

Since we just found out that Amethyst is a (serial?) car thief, I wouldn't be surprised to find notes up in all the stores in a 50 mile radius saying, "Do not accept cheques from anyone purple."
posted by these are science wands at 12:10 AM on March 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

S01E48: The Return
- I'm going to take the chance to note an attribute of the title cards. They always reflect the exterior of the temple (at least when there's a standard card, unlike the next episode) at the time the action of the episode begins. So, this episode takes place starting at sunset, and so gets a title card at sunset. Steven the Sword Fighter and The Test both happen during rainstorms, and the title card shows that too.
- Greg has a thicker beard here than usual. Peedee is moving up at the fry stand. So much for normal affairs.
- The show has been turning up the tension for several episodes, and it all comes to a crest here. There are tons of secrets revealed in the next 22 minutes....
- Steven's cell phone, in addition to a contact for Mayor Dewey, also has ones for Onion (I guess they text?) and... Lion?!
- Mayor Dewey may be a bit buffoonish, but he knows, when things get weird, not to question Steven. BTW, he has a cup on his desk that says #1 RAD DAD. Aww!
- "EEE-vac-UU-ate! EEE-vac-UU-ate!" It's like a considerate Dalek!
- Peedee really doesn't want to bug out; he has to be dragged away from the fry stand. What did Ronaldo think? If there were only some way to find out. "In case I get shot down by an alien, there’s a folder on my desktop that says DO NOT DELETE. Please delete that folder!"
- Is it just me, or are Amethyst's eyes lighter in this episode?
- Before the crazy stuff starts, we get a good bird's eye view of Beach City. You know, I think I could recreate this in a SimCity game.... It seems a safe assumption, from previous episodes, that the city faces the east, meaning this shot faces west. That puts the main residential distract (which seems to have housing for more than 15 people, but not more than a couple hundred) to the north, the water tower and docks north-west, and a park in the middle slightly south.
- The big reveal, the premise finally made plain:
Greg: "...these gems are not like your mother. They're not like Garnet, Amethyst or Pearl. They're not going to start caring about people now. They didn't the first time they...." Uh-oh.
Steven: "The first time they what?"
Greg: "I mean, it was thousands of years ago, it's not like I was there...."
Steven: (questioning look)
Greg: "The Gems should be telling you all this stuff. I get it, I mean, they don't want you thinking of them like that!"
Steven: "Like what? Dad, like what??"
Greg: "Like aliens, Steven! Aliens who invaded Earth!" Of course, we've seen this coming for some time, but having it spelled out like that....
Greg: "All they do is try to make up for it! But they just can't forgive themselves! Do you understand? Look, they were doing something awful to the planet, and your mother couldn't stand it anymore. She told me that's why she had to turn on her own kind. She gave up everything just to stop what they started here and drive the invading gems off of Earth."
Steven: "So, she saved the world! That's good!"
Greg: "There's no such thing as a good war, kiddo. Gems were destroyed, and people too. In the end your mother could only save a handful of her closest friends. If it weren't for her shield, man, I don't know.... But hey, let's look on the bright side! We're gonna drive by that waffle place in a couple of miles!" Greg will try to put a positive spin on anything.
- Steven: "I have Mom's shield, they need me!" Greg: "I need you too!"
- Steven: "Dad! Turn the van around! Turn the van around, please!" And Steven smashes the door with his fist. As before, his gem powers seem to assert themselves when he feels strong emotion, apparently his gem strength works the same way. That sets off the airbag, which causes Steven to reflexively bubble. By the way, it was pointed out in the subreddit that previously, every time Steven has bubbled it's been to protect someone else, but not this time, this time it was self-defense.
- Fryman: "Yo, Greg! Are you and your kid okay?" The following scene has the Beach City regulars coming out to check on them. Of special note: Sour Cream is with Onion and Capt. Yellowtail, adding further weight to the possibility they're all family. Second, there is a character we've never seen before with Sadie, looking similar, but older and taller. Is this her Mom?
- Steven: "Stay with everyone and keep them safe. I'll figure out some way to get back to Beach City!" SUDDEN LION PAW! BTW, this seems to be the first time Greg's seen Lion, on camera at least, but he's not surprised at all.
- Steven calls Connie's home phone, but Connie has a cell phone. I guess her parents don't want them contacting each other readily (understandable, given their protectiveness), or the phone is for parental communication. Steven has called the home phone before to talk (see Marble Madness). One of these days the Maheswarans are going to sit down and have a talk with their daughter about this boy she's spending so much time with, and some things are going to be extremely hard to explain.... Speaking of which, I hope the elder Maheswarans didn't hear that message. They are all about safety.
- Oh hey, Opal's back! Hi Opal!
- Steven, to Lion: "Stay here! If something happens Dad'll need a new son!" Ah, one last moment of humor... before....
- "At least Steven's safe." "Hey guys!"
- Peridot finally reveals a power besides her hand computer thing: she can make a bubble herself, that can phase through walls, or at least through the wall of the ship. But Peridot doesn't actually seem to be the threat here, because of....
- JASPER. New character, and wow, she's a jerk. Jasper seems to have a past history with Rose Quartz. Oh and she's dragged along....
- Lapis Lazuli! I had guessed that the transmission might have been a ploy, made under duress as a way to make them lower their defenses.
- It turns out to be a good thing that Steven made it back because SHIELD. But Garnet is disincorporated! Steven is knocked out by that cruel Jasper! Oh no, what will happen to our heroes?? Turn in next... oh, right away really.

S01E49: Jailbreak
- The ominous events begin right away with a sinister noise, and instead of the washing machine, clothes line and Beach City buildings behind the title card, just starry space.
- The element that makes the jailbreak possible, of course, is another unexpected attribute of Steven's unique biology: anti-gem technologies like force fields and destabilizers barely affect him. When Rose had the idea to produce Steven, was this part of the reason? Some care is taken to draw the yellow lines embedded in Steven's skin when blocking the forcefield; will those be important in some way later?
- The big reveal of the episode, besides a ton of lore like the interior of a gem ship and gem technology and gem destabilizers and the like, is the reveal that Garnet been a fusion the whole time. There's been plenty of hints dropped, I mean it's not like Garnet suddenly turned out to have a long-lost identical twin who's been away in an alternate universe, or anything crazy like that!
- The names of her components are Ruby and Sapphire. Ruby seems to be brash and tough, and wears a bandana. Sapphire seems to be calmer and more musical, but is also very fast. Ruby seems desperately afraid that Sapphire is alone. (The reason Ruby tells Steven not to look at her is probably because, as they say later, they were saving the knowledge that Garnet is a fusion as a birthday surprise!)
- Notice: you never get to see Sapphire's eyes. Perhaps she just has one? But Garnet's three eyes are all different colors.... And neither base gem has sunglasses....
- Also interesting. Of the now four single Crystal Gems, Pearl is by far the tallest; Ruby and Sapphire are slightly taller than Steven, but I think still shorter than Amethyst.
- The scene where Ruby and Sapphire recombine into Garnet is amazing! Garnet is so happy to be herself again. It's a stark contrast to Sugilite. This is a good place to note that different fusions seem to be combined in personality to different degrees. Garnet's personality seems to be a perfect meld of Ruby and Sapphire, and Sugilite's of Garnet and Amethyst. Opal and (the conspicuously missing from the episode) Alexandrite are less combined, and Stevonnie (except for a few weird moments) seems to more or less have Steven and Connie inside separately.
- Peridot: "'Go to Earth,' they said! 'It'll be easy,' they said!" Peridot seems to be the least powerful gem we've seen all together; even Steven has more powers than she's revealed, and she hasn't shown any signs of gem-level strength either. She doesn't seem to be very happy to put up with Jasper, who bosses her around. While not friendly, she doesn't actually seem to be evil, just callous.
- SQUARE MOM IS BACK. Note: now it's Garnet's turn to get a redesigned outfit.
- Super fight scene between Garnet and Jasper, and Garnet's first (and terrific!) song.
- The look on Peridot's face when Steven, Pearl and Amethyst find her. You kind of feel sorry for her!
- The hand ship falls upon the north face of the hill the Crystal Temple is built upon, and presumably will become a factor of future continuity.
- Everyone survives the crash, Steven and friends with the aid of his bubble. It's not over yet though.
- Why don't the Crystal Gems form Alexandrite to battle Jasper? Maybe they didn't have the chance? Although Jasper, in fusing with Lapis, gives them plenty of time.
- Alas: in this episode Lapis, while back on Earth, seems like she's still not a free agent. She's a fan and staff favorite, and it'd be super awesome to see her out and about in Beach City; she didn't seem very stuffy in Mirror Gem. BTW, according to the credits the fusion of her and Jasper is called Malachite. You don't get to see her for long, but she actually has hands instead of feet, and is kind of designed like a centaur! Oh there you go bye bye Malachite. See ya, Lapis. Garnet: "Yikes. They are really bad for each other."
- Finally: Steven's ringtone seems to be a simplified version of the theme song! "We-- are the Crys-tal Gems! We al-ways-save-the-day! And if you-think-we-can't--" Oops, horrified Connie calling. And so we leave our heroes, until tomorrow.
posted by JHarris at 3:07 AM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

One other minor thing I liked was that despite Rose's sword and the weapons on the battlefield being a big deal back in the episode Rose's Scabbard, Steven still hasn't used a weapon. Unless you count the giant laser cannons, I suppose.

BTW, this seems to be the first time Greg's seen Lion, on camera at least, but he's not surprised at all.
Greg first met Lion in Ocean Gem, I believe.
posted by Peccable at 6:25 AM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

Oh, also, the song Sapphire was singing in the cell was the same tune as Garnet's Stronger Than You.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 10:18 AM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

Peccable: Ah! You are correct, my mistake. It's not always easy to track so many episodes at once.
posted by JHarris at 11:27 AM on March 13, 2015

Does anyone else hear a hint of "Just the Two of Us" at the beginning of Garnet's song?
posted by sleeping bear at 2:52 PM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

"I am their fury, I am their patience, I am a conversation."

posted by the uncomplicated soups of my childhood at 7:07 PM on March 13, 2015 [5 favorites]

sleeping bear: “Does anyone else hear a hint of "Just the Two of Us" at the beginning of Garnet's song?”
Yes, the intro has that same staccato rhythm.
posted by ob1quixote at 7:20 PM on March 13, 2015


many feels
posted by Strass at 10:32 PM on March 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

Something else I noticed. When Garnet splits and de-incorporates in The Return, the "cracks" are shown as Tron-like, yellow lines of light that bend at 90 degree angles. Those are just the kinds of lines that appear on Steven when he holds his arm in the cell door beam. He's also barely phased by the disruptor device that Peridot wields, which also produces a similar effect on Steven.

I think the clue isn't just that his unique composition means he isn't affected, but maybe that he can't deincorporate like the other gems, his human self adds physical substance to his gem self.
posted by JHarris at 11:10 PM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

ob1quixote: “Yes, the intro has that same staccato rhythm.”
I meant to link “Just The Two of Us” in there somewhere as well.
posted by ob1quixote at 12:19 AM on March 14, 2015 [1 favorite]

So in the episode prior, we saw 16 suits of armor and a bunch of "normal" weapons. In this episode, we get a good look at the adults of the town and there are 11-12 ish that would have been combat capable 10 or more years ago. Coupled to Mr. Universes comment about casualties and the battle standard, was Rose leading the gem equivalent of the Knights of the Round?
posted by Slackermagee at 7:46 AM on March 14, 2015

Well "Stronger Than You" made me burst into happy tears

I have too many feelings.
posted by yasaman at 4:44 PM on March 14, 2015 [3 favorites]

So with "Stronger Than You", over in Tumblr land, a lot of people shared this expectation that Peridot would start rapping from the way her protestation was in time with the music, and so someone composed a rap that another person recorded. Kids these days are so talented.
posted by vaghjar at 5:14 PM on March 14, 2015 [4 favorites]

Slackermagee, I think, is ultimately referring to Greg's mysterious statement: it's not like I was there, uttered when denying things to Steven in the van while driving away. My belief is that's just verbal ambiguity.

I think the only major battle we've heard of was the one 6,000 years ago. Gems and people were killed then, though everything we've heard suggests that only gems fought. Despite Greg's statement, I don't think there has been another fight with the homeworld since, too much has been built on this being the return of Homeworld to Earth.

So, I don't think Beach City residents fought in the war, although if there is another battle with Homeworld in the future they might participate in some way -- I think the show has been slowly showing us that humans are not useless in gem fights, with Sadie's valor on the island, and how Steven defeated the worm in Bubble Buddies without use of gem powers. But that armor and those weapons, I think the show has been showing us, are unlikely to be of use in a second Homeworld battle, Homeworld's advanced beyond that point.

But I suspect Greg had seen what Rose was talking about: in Rose's Room. One of the two remaining first-season episodes has Steven and Connie going in there to reënact and visualize the adventures of the No Home Boys, and my guess is they stumble upon a file or something about the Gem War that Rose had used to show Greg.

As for Onion being a secret powerful evil gem, get real. Onion's much more diabolical than that.
posted by JHarris at 6:52 PM on March 14, 2015 [2 favorites]

I finally caught up to these episodes. Garnet's been my favorite since we started watching (I love both her lines and the way Estelle delivers them), so this was just...icing, cake.

Also, I keep thinking that Lapis looks familiar, and I finally realized--it's because she looks like she's from PhD. Maybe Tajel is having a really weird dream.
posted by wintersweet at 10:04 PM on March 16, 2015 [1 favorite]

Someone's done a mashup of "Stronger Than You" and "Just The Two Of Us": Just The Two Of Us Are Stronger Than You
posted by Mizu at 2:51 AM on March 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

This show keeps reminding me of the Transformers Animated series (not the CGI one, the one before that). You have:
-Stranded robots
-From a homeworld that has upsetting politics to which they don't conform
-A really jerky and much more powerful set of enemy robots
-A kid who looks human but is actually part robot and has to learn to manage her powers
-A supportive but clueless human father

SU is much deeper in many ways, and certainly much prettier, but, the Animated series had some really good, similar moments with its human and robot characters.
posted by emjaybee at 9:15 PM on March 22, 2015 [2 favorites]

The person who did a SU/Daft Punk mashup on a whim decided to redo it so now it's "Just the Two of Us are Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger Than You" and it is delightful.
posted by Mizu at 11:40 PM on April 4, 2015 [6 favorites]

I was just blown away by Garnet in this episode. It was fascinating to see her component gems, and how much they need and want each other.

Jasper talks about fusion being something for weaker Gems, but it has clearly been an important part of gem society on earth (as we see in the shape of the temple, for example).

Perhaps their relative weakness has given them more reason to use fusion, which has opened up a whole new world of possibilities. It seems to me that Garnet is the ultimate example of fusion. It's not a crutch, it's not opportunistic, it's not temporary. Ruby and Sapphire are one, even when they're torn asunder.
posted by ocherdraco at 7:03 AM on May 24, 2015 [1 favorite]

If we're pointing out possible parallels to other series we love, the giant hand ship put me in mind of FLCL, though I had also thought of FLCL during "Laser Light Cannon."
posted by RobotHero at 2:23 PM on July 26, 2015

I think it's a deliberate FLCL reference.
posted by ocherdraco at 5:31 PM on July 26, 2015

"Stronger Than You" was fantastic and these episodes really cemented Garnet as my favorite. The relationship of her two halves is just so sweet, in contrast to her usually stoic badass demeanor.
posted by Foosnark at 3:34 PM on August 27, 2015

just finished the first season after two days straight of binging. This show is just the best. Now I gotta catch up on season 2!
posted by numaner at 12:42 PM on October 5, 2015

I had almost exactly the same response as yasaman above to Garnet's song. I was genuinely cry-laughing through the whole thing.

Mizu: " Rebecca told us to capture the feeling of “there’s no way she could lose”. "
This is exactly why. Garnet reunited was utterly herself. A pure confidence born of perfect (dual)self-knowledge, she's literally singing while she's winning. As ever, everything she says (or sings) is flat-out fact, not motivational, not boastfulness. Here is the news: "I think you're just mad, 'cause you're single."

On the other hand, the scene on the beach with Jasper defeated reaching out for Lapis made me queasy the same way that Intercision in the indirectly SU-referenced His Dark Materials did. I honestly thought that Jasper was going to enact a forced-fusion. Ugh, ugh, ugh! So glad the writers didn't go that way.

Such a great pairfusion of episodes. Qualifies as some of the best TV drama I've seen this decade.
posted by comealongpole at 10:33 AM on August 25, 2016

Wait until you see what happens to Jasper in later episodes, comealongpole....
posted by JHarris at 1:16 PM on August 25, 2016 [1 favorite]

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