Mark Watches ‘Steven Universe’: S03E24 – Back to the Moon

In the twenty-fourth and penultimate episode of the third season of Steven Universe, RUBIES. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Steven Universe.

Much of this episode is silly, but where it’s not? Well, shit. I was thrilled by the return of the Rubies because I like them a lot. And now they have names!!! The sincerity of these characters is probably what makes me enjoy them as much as I do, and I kinda want nothing bad to happen to them ever?

Of course, their goals are in contradiction to the Crystal Gems, but I appreciated that as absurd as Amethyst’s plan was, it was harmless. They just had to maintain the con as long as possible! Coming off the last arc, I loved that Amethyst was the one front-and-center in this story, since it’s her unique powers of transformation that allowed them to trick the Rubies.

However, I want to spend most of this review discussing the implications of everything the Rubies say to the Crystal Gems about Jasper, war, and Pink Diamond. There’s a lot of information revealed here, much of it a deeper look at Homeworld society and politics. It was clear that these gems worshipped Jasper; everyone back home must know that Jasper is one of the most perfect gems in all of existence, right? Not just that, though; one of the Rubies refers to Jasper’s astounding military history, which must contribute to the mythology around Jasper. In short, the Rubies’s behavior shows us a powerful story of idolatry, of gems putting another gem up on a pedestal. They ache to do anything to win Jasper’s affection or attention; one of them begins to cry when Jasper is nice to a different Ruby that isn’t them. And that’s scary! To see how easily they fall in line for someone they’ve ever met… it’s disturbing.

Amethyst exploits that in the hopes of getting them to just go home, and it’s a torturous journey to that point. Not only does the whole thing provide a physical strain on her, but there’s emotional devastation as well. SURPRISE, IT’S STEVEN UNIVERSE, EVERYTHING HURTS. After learning of Jasper’s military prowess, we’re finally told the story of Pink Diamond. (Or a summary of it, I should say.) It felt unbelievable: everything we had been told about Rose Quartz had portrayed her as a hero. As someone who valued all life. Who sought out non-violent solutions. Who bubbled another Gem for wanting to shatter the gem of their enemies. And instead, we learn that the very same person who was put on a pedestal is a hypocrite.

APPARENTLY, SHE SHATTERED PINK DIAMOND. At this point, we don’t know the details; we don’t even know if it’s true. I understood Steven’s immediate reaction, but now I’m worried. What if that is what she did? What if she’s not who we thought she was?

I’d like to ruminate on it more but STEVEN JUST GOT SUCKED INTO SPACE AND THERE’S NO OXYGEN THERE AND HOW DARE THIS SHOW CLIFFHANGER ME RIGHT HERE.

The video for “Back to the Moon” can be downloaded here for $0.99.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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