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Rebecca Sugar’s hit series is not just another cartoon, and these scenes prove it. Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the "Top 10 Steven Universe Moments."
For this list, we’ll be looking at some of the biggest scenes in the show – up to this point—that have either taken our breath away, nearly driven us to tears, and/or marked another major milestone in Steven and the Gems’ lives. As always, if you haven’t seen any of these moments, there WILL be spoilers. Now Let’s Keep Beach City weird.
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Peridot Becomes a Crystal Gem—Message Received
Since she’s involuntarily stuck on Earth, Peridot is forced to collaborate with the Crystal Gems on a project to stop a Homeworld weapon from destroying the planet. However, recent events have made them unsure if they can trust her… especially when Peridot contacts her superior—Yellow Diamond. She thinks she can convince her Diamond to terminate the project, but it’s all in vain—Yellow is dead-set on tearing the Earth apart. Frustrated, Peridot loudly declares the Earth is worth protecting… but she MAY have taken it too far. With one anger-fueled act of defiance, coupled with everything she’s learned, Peridot inadvertently cements her place in the Crystal Gems—and earns the others’ trust.
What’s the Use in Feeling Blue?—That Will Be All
While all the Homeworld invaders we’d met thus far were a threat—none are quite as terrifying as the matriarchs, the Diamonds... When Steven and Greg make a mad rush after escaping The Human Zoo, they find themselves in an even more dire situation—trapped in a room with both Yellow and Blue Diamond. Luckily for them, they haven’t quite caught onto their presence, but the tension is still at an all-time high. As Steven and Papa DeMayo listen in on their conversation, Yellow Diamond looks to ease the perpetually downcast Blue through song. Though this scene is mostly remembered for its nail-biting suspense, it also sheds a lot of light on The Diamond’s relationship with Pink, and suggests they’re not entirely devoid of compassion…
Greg Tries to Fuse with Rose—We Need To Talk
The Story of Greg and Rose is one writhe with both joy and melancholy... and no scene quite encapsulates that feeling as this one. Seemingly becoming jealous of the connection Rose and Peal share as gems, he attempts to take the next step in their relationship by using a fusion dance. A once romantic moment soon changes its tone completely as his efforts end in failure. Topics of respect, past love, and the future all come into question, as this moment emphasizes the stark differences between these two star-crossed lovers and how things will never be easy between them…
Meeting White Diamond—Legs from Here to Homeworld
The enigmatic leader had been hyped up the entire series, but nothing could prepare us for her reveal. As Steven’s true lineage is revealed to Blue and Yellow Diamond, they cease the conflict, and take the gang to Homeworld in a desperate bid to return the corrupted gems to their original form. An audience with the matriarch is just what Steven wanted… but it didn’t go quite as planned. It’s a brief and eerie encounter that shows just how final the word of White Diamond is.
Rose Quartz’s Video Tape—Lion 3: Straight to Video
When the normally self-sufficient Lion keeps interrupting bedtime, Steven discovers that his pink feline friend has a pocket dimension in his mane, full of strange treasures. Among these treasures is a videotape labeled “For Steven.” Steven puts the tape on… and it turns out to be a home movie from before he was born. At first, it seems to be just a funny introduction from Greg, but then it switches to a heartwarming message from Rose Quartz. She tells Steven how they can’t both exist, but she’ll become part of him, and she’ll always be with him as he grows up to become something extraordinary—a human being with so much potential who can just be himself.
Greg and Pearl Finally Make Up—Mr. Greg
In an episode with more tears than even Crying Breakfast Friends, Greg finds himself millions of dollars richer and taking a lavish vacation alongside Pearl and Steven. Problem is, it’s no secret that Pearl and Greg don’t quite get along, and things quickly turn sour. Pearl can’t help but let her emotions show as she laments on the gone-by days with Rose Quartz, still struggling to understand why she would pick Greg over herself. However, the barriers between them finally show some signs of breaking as Steven’s song reminds them of the two loves they have in common. It’s a closing scene that suggests things may not entirely be fixed just yet, but their relationship finally has signs of healing.
Stronger Than You—Jail Break
The moment Steven Universe went from being a good show to a great one. We learn the truth about Garnet—she is a fusion of Ruby and Sapphire. With her newly regained confidence, Garnet faces Jasper in a rematch, showing her the true strength of fusion. Of course, Estelle’s incredible vocal work takes center stage in this scene, as Garnet makes quick work of the once unshakable foe. With both Peridot and Jasper dealt with, the crystal gems make a desperate escape and Season One of Steven Universe ended with a bang.
Lars’s Sacrifice—Off Colors
Lars has made quite the reputation for himself in the series as a major coward, but when he ended up in Homeworld, he finally found his courage—All it took was a few gem-hunting mechs. Seeing one of the off-color gems in peril, Lars can’t shake the thoughts of his unwillingness to save Sadie, and decides to leap into action for the first time. But his newfound heroism doesn’t last for long. Robbed of his life in the struggle, Steven mourns for Lars, producing a tear which somehow brings him back to life… sort of. What marks this as a standout moment in the series is that it is the beginning of Lars’s long awaited redemption arc—and it was well worth the wait.
The Clash with Yellow and Blue—Reunited
There’s no doubt that the wedding between Ruby and Sapphire would’ve taken this spot on our list… had it not been gatecrashed by these two. With plans to awaken the cluster, the two Diamonds take on the combined might of the crystal gems. Surprisingly, the gem’s teamwork is enough to stand toe-to-toe with them at first, with the revived Cluster actually fighting by their side. Alas, it's just not enough and the gem’s defeat is only stopped when Steven is able to speak to their foes directly and reveal of the truth behind their fellow Great Diamond Authority member…
Before we unveil our number one Gem moment, here are some honorable mentions:
- Steven vs. Bismuth—“Bismuth”
- Ruby and Sapphire’s First Fusion—“The Answer”
- Amethyst vs. Pearl—“On the Run”
- I Think You’re Pretty Great—“Rose’s Scabbard”
- Stevonnie vs. Jasper—“Crack the Whip”
The Truth About Pink Diamond—A Single Pink Rose
There had always been a lot of speculation surrounding Steven’s mother, Rose Quartz, and her apparent shattering of Pink Diamond. But very few could have predicted the secret that Pearl had held so close and sworn to never tell a soul. Steven enters Pearl's mind, and sees the events of that day play out in her memories. It is revealed that Rose Quartz is Pink Diamond, who, in a bid to stop the Diamonds from colonizing earth, staged her own shattering and pushed the rebellion to a tipping point. With this newfound information, Steven’s worldview is shattered, as he realizes the weight he must now carry as her son.