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It's time for a joyous wedding and a tense family reunion as Steven Universe is "Reunited" It's time for a joyous wedding and a tense family reunion as Steven Universe is "Reunited"

With this arc, a ton of 150 episodes’ worth of Steven Universe storylines are starting to pay off in real, seemingly final ways—or if not final, then at least something close to it. Bringing long-running stories to a satisfactory conclusion is hard on series with 22- and 42-minute episodes; it’s even harder with 11.…

Steven Universe has a tender, clarifying reconciliation with an old friend Steven Universe has a tender, clarifying reconciliation with an old friend

A wedding is a pretty damn good setting for some Steven Universe comedy. As “Made Of Honor” kicks off, everyone is trying to pull together to plan Ruby and Sapphire’s wedding, working off an enormous binder Steven has been compiling over the course of his whole life. It’s very sweet to see Pearl get excited about the…

Steven Universe helps Ruby find herself and ask "The Question" Steven Universe helps Ruby find herself and ask "The Question"

Part of the difficulty with Ruby-Sapphire stories is that, of necessity, they both feel a little smaller than the rest of the Gems—after all, we mostly relate to them as half of Garnet. That means that it’s easy for their characterization to feel reductive, like they both need to be slotted into roles that explain…

Steven gets in Amethyst's head on a melancholy, funny Steven Universe Steven gets in Amethyst's head on a melancholy, funny Steven Universe

There’s a reason Amethyst is the only Gem Steven has fused with so far—they have a lot in common, and their relationship is much more equitable than Steven’s relationships with Garnet and Pearl. These similarities have been repeatedly teased out in episodes like “Steven Vs. Amethyst,” eventually forming basis for one…

Steven Universe finds itself torn as the Crystal Gems try to process new information Steven Universe finds itself torn as the Crystal Gems try to process new information

Rose Quartz actually being Pink Diamond is easily the most important piece of Steven Universe backstory we’ve learned since season one—and where for most of the first season, it was just Steven (and the viewers) who didn’t know much about the history of the Crystal Gems, here, everyone is finding out at the same time.…

Steven Universe casually shatters its own backstory with a pair of intense, internal episodes Steven Universe casually shatters its own backstory with a pair of intense, internal episodes

Every run of Steven Universe Beach City episodes gets followed by some climactic events tearing open part of our understanding of the broader Steven Universe mythos. Is this what you were expecting? Both of today’s episodes move inexorably, slowly, toward decisive conclusions that set up major pieces of the season’s…

Steven Universe tells some fun short stories structured as "Letters To Lars" Steven Universe tells some fun short stories structured as "Letters To Lars"

Steven Universe rarely does just one Beach City episode—usually there will be a few in a row, each focusing on a different character or group of characters to check in on how they’re growing and changing in between Steven’s Gem adventures. Here, the conceit of “Letters To Lars”—Steven writing Lars a letter to give him…

Garnet's anxiety is surprisingly sweet as Steven Universe goes "Pool Hopping" Garnet's anxiety is surprisingly sweet as Steven Universe goes "Pool Hopping"

Garnet’s future vision has long been one of my favorite science fiction elements of Steven Universe, and that’s not just because it’s cool that Garnet can see the future. Rather than merely using her ability as a way of solving plot problems, Steven Universe has spent time exploring what it means for Garnet to be able…

Sadie slays at "The Big Show" on a killer Steven Universe Sadie slays at "The Big Show" on a killer Steven Universe

None of Steven Universe’s Beach City characters have had arcs as complete as Lars and Sadie. Lars, grumpy and distant because he was afraid to try anything or appear vulnerable, has become a daring, confident space captain willing to engage in dangerous missions. Sadie, originally a wallflower smothered by her mother…

Garnet tells Steven Universe a story we've heard before about "Your Mother And Mine" Garnet tells Steven Universe a story we've heard before about "Your Mother And Mine"

It sure seems like we’re getting closer to a climax, right? Where almost every episode of Steven Universe has had forward momentum, if only for one or two side characters in Beach City or for our understanding of the Gems’ past, “Your Mother And Mine” is contemplative and quiet, more of a calm before the storm than a…

Cartoon Network's Apple & Onion isn't the freshest fruit, but it's still pretty tasty Cartoon Network's Apple & Onion isn't the freshest fruit, but it's still pretty tasty

The animated buddy comedy is a well-worn format at this point, with pairs ranging from Ren & Stimpy to Cow And Chicken to Billy & Mandy. The genre has endured, largely because it’s a sturdy foundation for all kinds of wacky adventures—as long as the audience can hang on to the two main characters, you can do pretty…

Future Man takes one final jump in a melancholy-tinged, action-packed finale Future Man takes one final jump in a melancholy-tinged, action-packed finale

This season of Future Man has been a bit meandering, letting its characters oscillate between being super psyched for their murder mission and having them run off to alternately parent a baby, do coke and run a restaurant, and play video games in a house with a cool bathroom. Thankfully, “A Date With Destiny” pulls…

The last temptation of Josh Futturman makes for a comically overstuffed Future Man The last temptation of Josh Futturman makes for a comically overstuffed Future Man

The main benefit of Future Man being a TV show instead of a movie is time. Additional time to build out characters, to flesh out the show’s time travel rules, and to allow for several different realities and reversals of roles. It’s why we got the two best episodes of the show so far, which are almost wholly contained…

Future Man splits its best episode between two insane period pieces Future Man splits its best episode between two insane period pieces

“Beyond The Truffledome” scatters Future Man’s heroes to different time periods, meaning the main cast shares few scenes together. It’s chunkily paced, with an extended sequence depicting Tiger’s time in the 1940s and ’50s before diving into Wolf recounting his glorious time as an ’80s guy. Josh Hutcherson is barely…

Future Man finally goes full Back To The Future, and it really is that new sound we've been looking for Future Man finally goes full Back To The Future, and it really is that new sound we've been looking for

Finally, an episode of Future Man full of cool stuff happening. “Operation: Natal Attraction” takes place entirely over the course of one night, evenly divided between Josh’s efforts to ensure that Kronish is on the boat with Leslie and Tiger’s attempt to get Wolf back on board with the mission. Only one of them is…

Future Man's riff on Fatal Attraction is decidedly non-lethal Future Man's riff on Fatal Attraction is decidedly non-lethal

Just to get this out of the way: I have not seen the film Fatal Attraction. It is entirely possible that the bulk of this episode, a farcical series of misunderstandings in Dr. Kronish’s house involving Josh wearing fishnets and chaps, a gay reverend, a dead cat, and a prostitute with excellent ’80s hair is much…

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