I’ve been a fan of Steven Universe for a couple of years, for all that I was a late-joiner, hopping on the bandwagon of its technicolor emotions in the hiatus following Season 4.
It was kind of magical thing for me personally because it was something my brother and I bonded over in the depths of a wintry tempest in which we also decided a very chilly beer run was in order.
We watched all the episodes one after another in a marathon of twists and turns and skipping the “boardies” episodes because honestly, how much of the french-fry-themed family can one put up with?
So before I delve into this list of barely-coherent thoughts, I just want to say that I love this show. I adore its warm and cozy vibe, its beautiful message, and the wonderfully terrifically LGBTIA+ overtones. Just in case it seems like I’m tearing this thing apart.
This will have some mild, unavoidable spoilers but I’ll do my best to keep them relatively low.
The Villain Is The Best Part – and Kinda Familiar
I’m not sure when we entered what I like to call “The Age of the Villain”, but between characters like Cersei Lannister and Thanos, we’re seeing a real rise in villains who just steal the show.
The villain of Steven Universe: The Movie is sinister, vengeful, and a genuine threat. They give us some of the most interesting development and also some of the most amazing fight scenes we’ve seen in the show.
Their story and how they handle their development may seem a little familiar, though. It feels like a more nuanced examination of similar themes and situations we’ve seen before, a new look at the same dynamics.
They’re also wicked cool-looking.
The Music Was Just Wonderful
While many reviewers will be talking about the musical numbers and character songs, but those being mind-blowingly amazing is just kind of par for the course.
I just want to take a moment to appreciate the score. It takes a special kind of show to pair a truly apocalyptic event with a smooth chill-hop groove.
The Animation Is Amped Up To Amazing
More fluid, brighter colors, and better effects make the show still recognizable compared to the early episodes, but it’s a noticeable improvement.
Things like hair and liquid seem to have better movement, and the villain’s motions are handled brilliantly.
The hands also look more detailed and cool, which I know is a strange thing to notice but hey.
More Random Goodness:
- Steven has a neck now and that’s just great.
- The characterization is spot-on.
- Garnet wears two wedding bands, and I’m not sure if that was in the show, but it made me so happy to see (again).
- Steven has his natural voice! Finally! You could hear his poor VA cracking in later seasons and it’s so nice to hear him not trying to sound 12.
- Holy wow is some of this just utterly surreal. I’m getting residual flashbacks to when I owned Yellow Submarine on VHS.
The Ending Just Sort Of… Happens
Not to spoil too heavily, but the resolution to everything just sort of shows up and it’s over just like that.
Who knew that healing millennia-long scars was just 30 seconds of harmonizing away?
The Solution To the Great Big Problem is Kinda Iffy
The villain’s actions are a little easily undone thanks to a pretty major flaw that probably shouldn’t logically exist.
The solution to Steven’s particular problem kinda made no sense to me and still makes very little after having it explained to me.
There’s a New Fusion And I Literally Screamed At My TV When I Saw It
No spoilers, but it gave me complicated feelings.
Steven Universe: The Movie was excellent and definitely worth watching, although like many story arcs in this show, don’t expect much by way of follow-through.
The music is catchy and lovely, the characters show some amazing development, and the villain was the best part on top of it all.