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Steven Universe - The Zoo - Review:



Steven Universe returns in 2017 with a gem packed 5 episode bomb.

1. Steven's Dream
2. Adventures in Light Distortion
3. Gem Heist
4. The Zoo
5. That will be All



We pan from the title card down to the tropical island utopia where Greg has been kept. Steven runs to embrace him, relieved to see he’s not “chained up to a wall doing tricks for peanuts”. The Zoo humans (Zoomans?) are delighted to see a new friend on their island. Descending from humans brought there 1000s of years ago they have never seen the earth and have lived vicariously through Greg's stories.



A soothing voice from their earpieces announces it’s time for their “Daily routine”. J10 explains the little voices guide them through life, dictating when they eat, play, smell the flowers and… mate. The voice creepily asks if they’re enjoying the purple coloured rectangular fruit and J10 exclaims he has not had that much fun since yesterday for every day is the same in this eternal paradise.



Steven immediately protests against the rules, creating a disturbance in the Zoo's reality but none of the Zoomans even have the capacity to understand why they wouldn’t comply just like he can’t wrap his head around how they could be happy when they’re trapped here.



Greg explains that since they’ve never been anywhere else they have no reason not to love the zoo. “They never have to worry about a thing".Steven and Greg sneak out to get to the gate but Greg’s friends find them, asking if they’re playing a game. They don’t even know what a door is, safe for an urban legend of the time a gem came through a wall hole to help someone who was “hurt”.



Steven sucker punches Greg in the gut to get the gems to come in but nothing happens and the Zoomans rush to the next ceremony: The choosening. They all gather around a circle for Pink Diamond's match-making service. Greg is set up with his friend J10 who is totally into him but obviously, he can’t go through with it. He doesn’t want to be told who to be choosened with because that’s not how it works! Steven’s story about how Rose and Greg fell in love inspires Y6 and the rest of the Zoomans to rebel and chosen who they really want: and they all want Greg!



And when he rejects them, for the first time they feel sadness. Take this hurt away, they all scream in agony raising their hands to their Diamond gods and the Utopia dissolves into madness. The amethysts rush in to calm down the crying boys and girls as Steven runs with Greg on his back. Before he can make it out he’s stopped and told he’s in BIG trouble.

Notes:
- In true Steven Universe fashion, this is an island inhabited by people of all colours and shapes. Everyone is so chill and when they learn they can choose who they want to be with, they don't even think about whether it's someone of the same sex they just all chose Greg.
- I hope we get a follow-up of the Zoo, I want to see them reacting to Greg and Steven's visit and maybe even rebelling.
- A care and sorrow free life in a bubble sure looks fun, but it's no life at all
- I alternate between thinking PD really did care about the earth and feeling like she just treated it like a prize trophy. Alien abducting them and caging them is horrible but you can see she clearly made an effort to make them feel at home. I am dying to see the Rose vs Pink Diamond confrontation as they fight over the earth.

Quotes:
"Stevan! Gareg has told stories of you. The bits! The bits! That's you right?"
"There's always a catch to these utopias..."
"I choosened to take my dad and run away!"
- I'll never choosen again!!!!!
- [An amethyst trying to comfort the crying human] Sure you will.

Grade: 4/5
The Zoo was a unique and hilarious episode that managed to make me emotionally invested in humans whose names are just letters and numbers.

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