Steven Universe 1.3 “Cheeseburger Backpack”


Roz and Anais recap every Steven Universe episode.




Cheeseburger backpack! Cheeseburger backpack! I’m chanting already, excited as Steven just sitting there waiting for the mail.

Haha, mail. Oh, romantic Steven Universe writers, a postman? Adorable. This is going to play into the whole melodrama that rolls out later. Clever girl.

I’m getting ahead of myself. First, Steven has to get his mysterious box in the mail. It’s going to help him go on adventures and save the world. I like the comedy rule of three used here, first it’s a loaf of bread with a stamp, then a jury summons for one “R.J. Finkle”, and now… You have two options here. It’s either crazy town banana pants or normal as dry toast. And we get… boring box!! Woooo!!! Well played, writers, well played.

But what is a wacky sack? Dude, you have to wait for that info, because the Gems are back and they are still mid-crisis. Pearl argues with Amethyst, who is being ridiculous, and Garnet chills in the feathery carnage. The Gems have to run back out because they have to replace the moon goddess statue on the lunar spire. They should have gone moon spire, at the moon temple, in the moon throne room. I always find it hilarious when things are all named after the one thing that connects them, like old school Batman. He had Bat-Bombs, Bat-Rope, Bat-Shark Repellent… The more you do it, the funnier I find it. I’m weird.

Steven dramatically pulls out his novelty backpack, complete with self produced sound effects, like you do. It’s shaped like a cheeseburger and everything is a pocket. I need dis. With the promise that this adventure might be educational, Pearl allows Steven to carry the statue and come along on the mission. Pearl. Come on. This is going exactly where we all think it is. You’re supposed to be smart, girl!

Steven fills his bag with everything useful, including his stuffy Mr. Queasy, a toy that talks about barfing. And they warp. WAAARRRPP!!! Steven’s bag of items comes in super useful, including distracting the deadly crystal shrimp with a bagel sammich. I wonder if you can eat crystal shrimp. On a bagel. I’ll take one of those, please. Crystal shrimp po’boys. We’re going into business, Anais, with an all Steven Universe themed snackin’ place. We can call it “Steven Yumniverse” or “Steven Nomniverse”. Thoughts?

The Gem team gets all the way to the alter and Steven realizes he brought everything EXCEPT the one thing he was supposed to, the statue. BECAUSE STEVEN. He tries to Indiana Jones his way out of this with the Mr. Queasy doll, but the lunar spire is having none of it. The ancient temple crashes into the sea. But, the Gems are actually kinda proud of Steven for coming on this adventure and doing his best. This is a life lesson I still haven’t been able to embrace. I dislike failure. It displeases me greatly. Especially if I tried my hardest! But, we should all be able to do our best and accept the outcome, learning from the failures. Or, become a super villain, which is probably more the direction I’m headed. Unless I watch more Steven Universe. DOCTOR’S ORDERS. That would have been the fastest ending to Avengers ever. Oh hey, Ultron, feeling kinda like taking over the world? Here, watch this. Done. Let’s all get a donut and play some ukulele on the beach. Ultron would look so fetching in a straw hat.



I don’t know why but every time I hear Steven’s little postman song, I start singing “Mister Sandman”. The Sandman never shows up though, unlike the postman. He gives Steven a package, alledgedly containing a bag that should help him help the Gems on their magical adventures even without controlling his gem powers. He sounds like me when I prepare for a trip. Sure, I get completely lost in my own living room, but I always bring extra snacks and I know a ton of games. I AM AWESOME.

Steven rushes inside the house when the Gems warp back from their latest trip. he finds them covered in feathers, Amethyst trying to fit a giant egg into the refrigerator (yes, it is definitely broken when she’s done with it). They’re about to head out again, as Pearl explains, because the statue they brought back from their trip will allow them to keep the Lunar Sea Spire from becoming a pile of rubble. It used to be an important place for Gems on Earth. It’s yet another bit of backstory thrown in there for us. Try to remember it. It may not make sense right now but it will at some point. Just like Steven’s package.


Pearl is not impressed but when Steven looks at her with his starry eyes and Amethyst backs him up like a real big sister, she gives in and allows Steven to come with them. She even makes him carry the statue -big mistake if you ask me. I may be awesome but I know I should never ride shotgun on a road trip. Steven is a kid who just received a fun backpack with a gajillion pockets. Even if he means well, when comes the time to prepare for the trip, he only cares about stuffing as many things he can into it. Of course that’s going to be a problem at some point.

But we’re not there yet. Steven and the Gems warp to the Lunar Sea Spire, which sort of looks like the Tower of Pisa, only more crumbly. Pearl tries to get Steven to focus on the task at hand, especially since the spire is a part of his Gem heritage and also a pretty dangerous place for a Gem-in-training. Steven seems a bit too enthusiastic to be trustworthy but immediately proves himself useful when he finds a creative way to get past the whirlpool surrounding the spire.

The spire is not only a ruin on the outside, the inside is also extremely damaged – and infested with deadly crystal shrimps. Pearl has a plan. Steven has bagels. The shrimps smell food and clear a nice path for the Gems. Two points for Steven! Understandably, when the next obstacle is in sight, the Gems turn to Steven, chanting for him to find a solution in his magical bag. No pressure. Steven finds an inflatable raft, which sounds like a good idea until the current flushes it far from reach. No worries though, because Garnet. They make it past the obstacle and conclude that Steven can’t always have the best ideas. Team work, that’s the way to go.

Steven and the Gems reach the top of the Lunar Sea Spire! The moon has almost reached its peak position in the night sky. It’s time to place the Moon Goddess statue and let it do its magic. Except Steven doesn’t have it. Oops. He tries to make up for it by sacrificing his plush toy but it ultimately fails. The Lunar Sea Spire collapses, leaving behind a calm sea and our four friends. Steven is mortified to have let the monument fall apart. Pearl and Amethyst cheer him up – they can’t all be winners, right?

Third episode, third good lesson: trying to accept that you won’t always win and trying to keep a positive mind despite that. I don’t know about you guys but I’m still working on that one. Maybe I should buy a cheeseburger backpack.

Also, Roz? Steven Yumniverse for the win.'

Four screenwriters candidly writing about film, television, novels, comic books, video games, and fanfiction.

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