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Erin Rewatches Steven Universe (s01, e21-24) December 29, 2015

Posted by Erin Ptah in Erin Watches.
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Only four tonight, because my Internet has turned glitchy as hell, and I’m not gonna sit through another hour of trying to stream a ten-minute episode.

New and old commenters welcome!

Spoilers follow, as always.

s01e21 Joking Victimpurplepuma-tigermillionaire-poster

  • Things I totally did not notice before: the break room has a poster in the background with the Purple Puma and Tiger Millionaire! Wonder if it’s Lars’s or Sadie’s.
  • The whole “watching an ancient training video on a VHS tape for your retail job” thing is so real.
  • …and a brilliantly mundane way of setting things up so that, later, Steven will receive a VHS from Rose and immediately know what it is and where he can take it.
  • Sorry, Steven, you can’t do this full-time, there are things called “child labor laws.”
  • I missed that the “fire sauce” was in fact “fire salt” and is a Gem thing. Suddenly I get the OTTness of Lars’s fire-breathing rampage. Magic!
  • Has nobody made a Fire Salt OC yet?

s01e22 Steven and the Stevens

  • Action Garnet, effortlessly grabbing Steven and cartwheeling out of danger, is so awesome.
  • I love that the warp pad transports a big chunk of water (and a few sea critters) when activated mid-flood.
  • “But the whole town’s gonna be there!” “Steven, that’s like fifteen people.”
  • A good solid time-travel paradoxy fun episode. Amplified by the fun of seeing Steven try to form a boy band.
  • Welp, I know what song’s gonna be stuck in my head tonight.
  • Pearl plays violin, awww. That’s so her.

s01e23 Monster Buddies

  • Oh, hey, in this episode Garnet bubbles Steven and insta-teleports him back to the temple. So she’s not just stashing after all.
  • The chibi Centipeetle is cute, in a monster-y sort of way.
  • Steven goes for female pronouns with Centipeetle. I think all the other corrupted Gems have been “it”. Lion gets “he”, presumably because the mane is a pretty loud way of telegraphing that you’re in a male form. The goat from Giant Woman was “he” and “Steven Junior” — granted, it had horns, which in some species only the males do, but that’s not universal.
  • So does Steven have a general mindset of “in the absence of obvious flags of biological sex, default assumption is female”? Or is his subconscious doing something more like “in the presence of obvious flags of Gemkind, default assumption is female”?
  • You know what would be really interesting, if he assumed she/her pronouns by default with any Gem-related creature, and he/him with any creature native to Earth. Because he’s getting ingrained with the gender-related assumptions of both cultures, and automatically codeswitches between them.
  • Centipeetle is like an ugly confused puppy.
  • Who loves chips. Who deserves all the chips, yes she does, yes!
  • She gets poofed in such an unambiguously Gem-type way. And when Steven bubbles her (and teleports!), Pearl goes, “You can bubble gems!” If they’re trying to hide the origins of the corrupted Gems from Steven, they’re doing a very bad job.
  • People who were in the fandom when the season first aired: was the reveal a surprise to you? Did you feel like it was supposed to be a surprise? Or was it kinda obvious by this piont?

s01e24 An Indirect Kissrose-fountain

  • Shoutout to whatever anime nerd picked the title.
  • Amethyst’s breakdown is some good body horror.
  • Huzzah, the SU wiki transcript of the episode has translations of her glitch-speak! No major hidden secrets, it’s just nice to know.
  • Everything about Steven’s emotion in this episode is beautifully rendered. It makes perfect sense that he wouldn’t be that sad about someone he never knew, but he’s aware that all these people he loves are still grieving for her, and the disconnect leaves him guilty and frustrated and confused. Even if “trying to fake it for the Gems’ benefit” isn’t a great solution…and he deserves someone to talk to besides a statue…it shows a lot of emotional maturity, how he’s noticed that the Gems (and Greg) are not the ones who can help him through this.
  • “[The brambles are] a mess without her guidance! Directionless, pathetic, clinging things…” Pearrrrrrrrl. You are a mess of neuroses and insecurities, but you are not pathetic, and you’re stronger than you give yourself credit for.
  • I really like that it isn’t Steven’s Ginzuishou-style tear that unblocks the fountain. Sometimes magical symbolism will do the job, sometimes you need elbow grease.
  • Connie. Just…tell your parents. This is not dangerous otherworldly horror, this is the magic equivalent of Lasik.
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