Every burning question has been answered, and Steven Universe's fifth season has come to an end. It's hard to imagine there was a time when we were laughing at Watermelon Stevens or talking about how bad we disliked Lars. We have now seen the rise and fall of many great people and gems. I am a different person because of what I've seen and I'll never forget what this show did for me.
On Jan. 21, the finale of season five aired in a 45-minute special called Battle of heart and mind. This episode was an installment of the Diamond Days special and was otherwise known as Change your Mind.
So much happened in that 45 minutes. I found myself checking the remaining time, thinking the episode must be over soon, only to see I had barely hit the 12-minute mark. This entire show shook me to my core, changed me as a person, and made me cry more than any cartoon has ever done in my entire life.
Here are my thoughts.
A fascinating adventure for "kids" of all ages.
Earth as you know it has changed in many strange and fascinating ways. Explore this new world through the eyes of Steven, a young boy with unique gifts bestowed upon him by his giant Space Mom.
Obviously there will be a few spoilers in this piece, but everything here is based on information that was shown from the start of season one to the end of season 5. If you haven't seen the season finale yet go catch up and then come back to us afterwords!
Feel free to share your own thoughts as well!
All of the fusions in Battle of Heart and Mind
Let's start with something a little more light-hearted.
Ever since we learned that gem fusion was possible we've all wanted to see what every combination of every gem looked like. When we reached the season finale and there were still so many we hadn't seen I was losing hope that we would be able to see them all.
Then, just like that, every fusion came together over the course of just a few minutes. We even got to see the Rainbow Quarts refuse with Pearl and Steven instead of Rose.
One fusion we didn't get to see was one between Lapis Lazuli and Peridot. Those two have been through Hell and high water together, but we've never seen them fuse. I don't think I'm very upset by it. Of course I ship them, but I think the fact that they don't fuse just goes to show their respect for one another was stronger than we all thought. Why? Well, think about it.
Lapis Lazuli was in an abusive relationship for months before she was set free by Steven and the Crystal Gems. Peridot, on the other hand, was someone who never got to learn how to love herself because she spent most of her life being looked down on or forced to think logically to the point of self-deprivation. Now look at them. Lapis stands tall while sporting a smile instead of cowering with her arms folded across her chest. Peridot never stops trying to do better things and smiles with her friends instead of finding the little moments to be useless. These gems now have confidence and love for themselves and I'm more happy about that than I am upset they didn't fuse.
I regret being curious about Steven's Gem
What would happen if Steven poofed was one of the questions I have always been asking since the start of the show.
The moment Pink Diamond's fingernails wrapped around the edges of Steven's Gem I was just as terrified as I was curious. After just a few moments the translucent figure of his mother formed and for a second there I honestly thought Steven was going to finally get the chance to meet his Mom ... Then something even better happened.
The form fluctuated between shapes and showed a time lapse of all the forms that Pink Diamond used over the course of her life. Then, much to the surprise of everyone in the room, it ended with Steven.
It turns out Pink Diamond isn't hiding deep within her gem or in any sort of paused conscious. She truly gave up her form and everything that she was so Steven could be a human in this world and love all the things she was so passionate about. There was never a Pink Diamond and Steven Universe.
It was always just Steven Universe: A boy whose Mother sacrificed everything to make him. A boy who learned how to grow up faster than any 14-year-old ever should. A pinnacle of hope and encouragement for his friends and family. The very definition of character development, never giving up faith in someone, and finding beauty in everything.
A true Diamond in the rough and, you know what? I always knew he was and I'm so glad he finally realized it too.
Battle of Heart and Mind recap: Change your Mind
In the end they're all one big happy family. Steven was able to convince White Diamond to see the error of her ways and try a new style of life that didn't focus on the perfection of herself and everyone around her. He did this by calling her a child and causing her to blush. When White went off color she saw a flaw in herself, possibly for the first time ever, and immediately broke down. Steven saved the day with his infamous his heart-to-heart talk, something he's always been good at, and convinced her that everything was going to be okay.
It's okay to not be perfect as long as you're being true to yourself and you aren't hurting anyone.
"It's just me. Its always been me" - Steven Universe
The gems all went back to Earth with the Diamonds and immediately set a course to fixing the corruption. The ending scene of the episode looks almost like a family vacation at Rose's fountain. Just look at all of them swimming in the healing waters and enjoying each others company. This isn't the Diamonds ruling over these gems with an iron fist. It's a bunch of gems hanging out and just existing. White Diamond doesn't even seem all that phased to be sharing such a tight space with "inferior" gems.
This means the one lesson I truly believe Rebecca Sugar created Steven Universe for has been learned to its fullest extent: You are allowed, and expected, to invent yourself. They don't need to respect you because you respect you. They don't need to love you because you love you, but it's okay to get to know someone. No matter what you've been through, who you are, and how you're changing: Everyone can be redeemed.
And that's so beautiful.
What are your thoughts?
In my honest opinion if this was the last episode of Steven Universe to ever end I would be happy. The story came to an ending that's satisfied everything I could have ever wanted. I have never, in my life, been so satisfied with the finale of a show.
Drop a comment below or shoot me a Tweet and tell me what you're thoughts are. I, for one, am still crying. Even as I write this right now.
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