Cartoon Network’s Steven Universe is now one of the most popular cartoons on American television. Premiering on 2015, the show didn’t just pop up into our TVs as cool as it is now. For some, it was initially just a show of bright colors with an average premise. But as the show progressed, its goofballery and crazy sci-fi storytelling have all of us hooked. There are impossibly catchy songs that connect us to the characters and the plot, and the visuals are whimsical but have a tranquil effect at the same time.
However, the show has also had a fair share of criticisms, with the most recent ones attributed to its increasingly dark and dense themes. After four seasons, Steven Universe is said to be getting to a point where its characters forcibly deal with the dark tension that has been building up below its sugar-coated outer shell.
From immortal aliens and super powers, the series has evolved to become about sexuality, prejudice, murder, trauma, mental illness and abusive relationships, among others. These are all concepts that young audiences are shielded from because they seem to be heavy subjects they might not understand yet. In fact, there were even some cases of censorship petitions to no avail.
But as series creator Rebecca Sugar suggested, it’s not just a matter of “if” but also “why.” Whether or not the show dives deeper into those subjects, people shouldn’t get worked up because it teaches them how to healthfully deal with those issues.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, she previously explained: “I don’t want to avoid [the harsh elements]. I want to have it feel like that but also balance that out with the way then you have to talk to kids that are going through something like that and help them understand it.” By subtly introducing kids issues that they must face in real life later on, they are better prepared and they become more mature.
Currently, Steven Universe Season 5 is on hiatus. But can we expect darker episodes ahead? That seems to be the case.
The latest season opened with Steven put on trial for the murder of Pink Diamond. While he successfully defended himself , thanks to Zircon, the mystery surrounding Pink Diamond’s death remains. Sugar says that fateful event will not quickly be resolved once the CN series returns with new episodes. “This is a murder mystery,” she said of the fifth season. “And it’s not over.”
There isn’t much known at this point, what’ll come next after it. However, she teased in a separate interview that Steven will continue to discover more of his powers and abilities. We’ve seen Steven put everyone else’s needs before his own in the previous seasons, even becoming the person his family wants him to be. This will all change soon.
“What’s exciting as we get deeper into the show is making him realize that there are the magic Gem powers, but there are powers that people have as human beings to understand themselves and define themselves and make their own choices,” the series creator shared. “It’s an incredible power that we all have, and are often told to ignore or take for granted. Those are the kinds of powers I’m excited to have him learn how to explore.”
Well, we’re pretty sure everyone’sexcited too. Unfortunately, Steven Universe Season 5 doesn’t have a return date yet but we’ll be sure to update you here at The Bitbag once Cartoon Network makes an announcement. Stay tuned!
Who do you think was responsible for Pink Diamond’s death on Steven Universe Season 5? What would you like to see from the show after the murder mystery? Let us know in the comments section below!