After two and a half months without new episodes, Steven Universe warmed up January with a new Steven Bomb week last week. While the first couple of episodes focused on Steven’s birthday, starting with the heart-melting story of Ruby and Sapphire’s first meeting, the last three episodes were specifically about Peridot, the Gems’ sometimes enemy, and now uneasy ally. There were several developments for the character, but none that stuck with me quite so much as what happened in the fourth episode of the week, “Message Received.”
Fans of Cartoon Network's Steven Universe were disappointed to discover that the episode We Need to Talk, which first aired in the US in June 2015, was apparently re-edited for its UK broadcast, removing the most intimate shots of the fusion dance between Pearl and Rose Quartz, replacing them mostly with Greg Universe's slackjawed reaction. Tumblr user officialkurapika has made a side-by-side video that displays the changes.
It's an odd move, because removing the shots doesn't do anything to dissuade an attentive adult viewer that there's something going on between Pearl and Rose, especially since the dance is motivated by Pearl's jealousy of Rose's growing closeness with Greg. And it's not as if they go so far as to kiss in the moments that were excised, although as you can see in the screen shots, they do seem to come very close.
Although cosplay has been present for decades within the comics, anime, and sci-fi/fantasy fandoms, social media has played an integral role in the thriving communities of costuming that exist, such as Cosplay.com and the Superhero Costuming Forum. Over the years, the cosplay community has evolved into a creative outlet for many fans to establish and showcase some impressive feats of homemade disguise, craftsmanship, and sartorial superheroics at conventions.
In honor of the caped crusaders of the convention scene, ComicsAlliance has created Best Cosplay Ever (This Week), an ongoing collection of some of the most impeccable, creative, and clever costumes that we’ve discovered and assembled into a super-showcase of pure fan-devoted talent.
Being mixed race is an endless, exhausting lesson in liminality. There are days you’re unshakably confident in who you are and your place in the world, followed by days you are wrecked by the ambiguity of your existence. Genetic caprice digs gulfs of experience between cousins, siblings, even twins. “Authenticity” is a bullseye you never quite seem to hit. And when immigration enters into it — well. You can be certain of disappointing everyone back in the old country just as often as you disappoint the community that surrounds you.
Perhaps the worst part of it is the silence. Maybe you have a few friends to discuss this with. Maybe your siblings get it. Maybe you’ve found one treasured piece of media that speaks to the shade of grey in which you live. But in total, there isn’t much that portrays this experience — and even less of it accessible to a wider audience.
Enter Steven Universe.
Although cosplay has been present for decades within the comics, anime, and sci-fi/fantasy fandoms, social media has played an integral role in the thriving communities of costuming that exist, such as Cosplay.com and the Superhero Costuming Forum. Over the years, the cosplay community has evolved into a creative outlet for many fans to establish and showcase some impressive feats of homemade disguise, craftsmanship, and sartorial superheroics at conventions. In honor of the caped crusaders of the convention scene, ComicsAlliance has created Best Cosplay Ever (This Week), an ongoing collection of some of the most impeccable, creative, and clever costumes that we’ve discovered and assembled into a super-showcase of pure fan-devoted talent.
The comics, sci-fi, gaming and fantasy communities’ talents for homemade disguises, craftsmanship, and sartorial superheroics are definitely on display this weekend at Boston Comic Con, and we were there to check out the show as well as capture some of the stellar cosplay on display.
Photos by Betty Felon & Lauren Moran.
Steven Universe is a show about a lot of things, including sharing donuts with friends and learning to dance and falling in love with someone you were never supposed to fall in love with. It’s warm and wonderful and it is a joy to watch unfold. To celebrate the show, we've compiled this gallery — a small, but significant sample of the fan community’s passion for the silly little hero who, with the help of his friends and a cheeseburger backpack, might just save the universe.
Rachel Dukes is a cartoonist who has a diverse body of work, including contributions to the Subcultures and Beyond anthologies and a Steven Universe comic, as well as her own self-published Frankie Comics about her cat. Dukes has her first graphic novel, Let Me Walk You Home, coming out through Abrams in the fall.
If you read our interview with Steven Universe comics creators Jeremy Sorese and Coleman Engle, then you saw them talking about the story that would become Steven Universe #2. Originally set to be the first issue of the series, it revolves around the annual Beach City Bike Race, with Steven dead set on entering, despite complaints from the Crystal Gems, because they're afraid that the danger would result in his death and they're uncomfortable and unfamiliar with ideas about mortality among humans. Really.
Natasha Allegri is leading a movement. A quiet, earnest, doe-eyed movement to be sure, but one that is unstoppable, and unquestioningly vital. Bee and Puppycat, her already widely beloved series produced for Frederator's Cartoon Hangover channel, is about to relaunch, to widespread fan salivation. Her social media accounts swell with more and more followers every day. Puppycat plushes and inflatable swords were everywhere at San Diego Comic-Con, as was cosplay and fan art.
Allegri's work, in its sincere, unfailingly sweet way, has announced to the world that animation aimed at an adult (or at least teen) female audience is not just viable — it is a verified path to critical and commercial success. ComicsAlliance sat down with her at SDCC to discuss her success, the importance of cuteness, and what we can expect from the new Bee and Puppycat animated series.
With books like Adventure Time, Regular Show and more, Boom! Studios has been doing a pretty solid job of adapting Cartoon Network's hit shows into comic books. This week, they added another one to their roster in the form of Steven Universe, with writer Jeremy Sorese and artist Coleman Engle taking on the story of, well, Steven Universe, a kid being raised by the heroic Crystal Gems, who protected the world from monsters alongside his mother until she died bringing him into the world.
To find out more about where they intend to go with the comic, we spoke to Sorese and Engel about what they intend to do with the book, the surprising darkness behind the "cotton candy exterior" of Steven's universe, and, perhaps most importantly, their feelings about Sailor Moon Crystal.