Ben Loves: Steven Universe

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I’ve been gone for a little while, as you could probably tell, with my last post being over a month ago. I was doing my exams, and with everything going on, I simply wasn’t able to write any posts. I was meant to have guest bloggers, but exams, as well as a lack of applicants, and being busy, meant that it just did not happen. But thank you to Ashley Phay who did write an entry for ‘If you ask me’. But here I am, I am back.

So today I wanted to ease back into the swing of things with a post simple TV Show review. The show? Steven Universe. A show on Cartoon Network (yes, I do still watch that channel), which is quite simply, the greatest television show running on that channel. That’s still making episodes.

The show focuses on a young boy of the name Steven Quartz Universe. A half human half alien who has a gem embedded in his bellybutton. Together, with his mentors/carers/older sisterish role models Garnet, Pearl, and Amethyst (Or ‘The Tough one, the Purple One, and the Hot one), the 4 go on wild adventures, killing monsters, and saving the day. That would be the explanation of a lesser show. Steven Universe is a hell of a lot more than that, like it is much more mature than I make it sound. Of course, the silly and goofy moments come from our main protagonist Steven, but the show has a mythos, a plot, and characters which would rival any great anime! And I am being serious.

I will delve into a lot of spoilers about this show during this post, so if you don’t want to read on, then go read another blog. What makes Steven Universe so great is a few things, which I am going to discuss:

  1. CHARACTERS: The main characters of the show are great, don’t get me wrong, but the makers of this show took the time to develop the side characters as well. Y’see, all of them live in a place called ‘Beach City’, a seaside town in -INSERT COUNTRY HERE-, and being a seaside town, and the characters living on the beach, there is a limited space where a lot of the character work and operate. And all of the side characters are explored in a few episodes. I could go into all of them, but I’ll save you the bother. Lars and Sadie come to mind. Sadie is an adorable character, and Lars is a jerk. Both work at the Donut shop. Now, you could simply have Steven occasionally go in there and converse with the two. But no, we see his relationship with both of them, we see their friends, we see the two fall in love, but then break up. It also helps that a lot of the characters are related, so it is easier to have them reappear. No character simply goes to waste. And that is a great thing.
  2. DIVERSITY: This show is diverse in many ways. But it’s most clear one is the families. There is only one Nuclear Family in Steven Universe, and that is Connie’s, who is Steven’s friend/Love Interest. This is actually the only show that I know of to have an official Lesbian relationship. And it isn’t a side character. It’s Garnet! As Garnet is a fusion (basically, the gems can, in certain situations join their bodies together to become one person), and Garnet is a fusion between Ruby and Sapphire, who are both two separate, female gems. That is BRILLIANT. No family is traditional. Steven lives with the gems (as his mum died in order to give birth to him. We know only so much about her, but she’s an important part of the show), he has a single Dad, most of the families are single parent (that we have seen as of yet), and it is pretty cool. I applaud the show for showing us times are changing. I love Steven because, like myself, he embraces his feminine side. Even the gems are diverse, as they are all of different body types, and have different characters, it is perfection! THIS SHOW IS SO POST-MODERN!!!!
  3. PLOT: The main reason that Steven Universe is good. It has a plot. At first, the episodes were fairly episodic, with the only real thing linking them being the coming of age journey Steven is going though. But as it goes on, plot points start to appear, and while the episodic episodes continue, so do the plot-lines. Nothing is forgotten. You simply cannot just jump into this show. The main characters of the show are in self exile, they rebelled against their home world, due to their actions against planet earth. There was a war, gems had died, some were so shell shocked, that they went corrupt, and turned into monsters! As we soon find out, home world gems are coming back, and secrets are revealed, and the kindergarten is going to be reactivated, and Steven has a pet lion! THIS SHOW IS MUCH MORE THAN AN ACTION COMEDY!
  4. LITTLE TOUCHES: I won’t go into too many details, but there are so many little touches I love. the backgrounds, the music and the soundtrack, the comedy, the pacing, and the action and animation is so good, I could simply go into every detail, but this post would be long enough, but simply, even if you don’t watch it, listen to Estelle (voice of Garnet) sing ‘Stronger than you’, it is bad-ass!

Steven Universe is simply a show that people SHOULD watch. Animation is becoming again. There is room for comedy, but action shows are a dying art. They simply get too violent, or not violent enough. Or you can go full circle, and make Teen Titans GO!, where the plot of the original series is forgotten. They don’t make good action shows anymore (EXCEPT REHASH POWERPUFF GIRLS, BY BRINGING IT BACK IN 2016). They need them. And Steven Universe is a new hope. If you ask me, you should be watching Steven Universe. Simple as.

Here we go. I am back in business, keep reading the blog. More posts are going to be written, but as you know, it is quality over quantity. Whatever my next post is, I’ll see you on the other side!

About the author

Ben

Since 2012, Benjamin Attwood has written for the If you Ask Ben blog.

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