Steven Universe – Episode 59 “Rising Tides, Crashing Skies”

Ep. #59
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: Jun. 16th, 2015
SYNOPSIS: Ronaldo unleashes his documentary detailing the real truth behind the Crystal Gems.Get hyped, everyone, Ronaldo’s documentary – sorry, docuwebtary – is out and it will expose the real truth behind those alien rock folks calling themselves the Crystal Gems. For years, Ronaldo has long exposed the weirdness of Beach City, largely through his blog, but his greatest moment arrived when Jasper’s ship invaded the city. Ronaldo realized what the problem was all along and in this tell-all documentary, he dives deep into the true issue plaguing Beach City: The Crystal Gems.

Ronaldo interviews numerous Beach City residences on their opinion of the Crystal Gems and the giant hand-shaped ship that nearly did their hometown in. Predictably, their answers are a mixture of unreliable accounts or in the mayor’s case, an attempt to cover up the incident. Ronaldo tries to put the pieces together, but without proper context, he doesn’t know who really saved Beach City from the alien menace.


Ronaldo goes straight to the source as he walks over to the Gem temple to question their intent. Steven’s friendliness undercuts the Dangerous Mysterious vibe Ronaldo plays the Crystal Gems up as, willingly answering the latter’s questions and clarifying a few points. No, the aliens didn’t come down to kidnap humans for experimental purposes, they only wanted the Crystal Gems. Ronaldo is disappointed with such an anti-climatic answer, but he twists it up by tainting the Crystal Gems’ reputation, explaining that the invasion would not have happened if they weren’t in Beach City begin with. To Ronaldo’s credit, he’s not wrong.

Ronaldo interviews the townsfolks again, asking how they feel about the Crystal Gems’ indirect involvement with the alien invasion. Most of them are incredibly nonchalant and apathetic which I can’t say isn’t realistic amongst the population in real life anyway. Frustrated, Ronaldo straight up tells the Crystal Gems that they’re the cause of the problem and that they need to leave Beach City for everyone’s safety. Steven tries to vouch for them, but Garnet makes the call and casually tells her team to pack up, they’re leaving.

Ronaldo thinks he’s saved the day, but his brother informs him that the Crystal Gems often drew weird matters to Beach City in the first place. Without them, the town will be normal. Unable to live in a world where nothing interesting happens, Ronaldo tearfully begs the Crystal Gems to stay. Garnet shrugs and says “okay.” They never left in the first place (Garnet just wanted his camera out of her face), but don’t tell Ronaldo that!

Ronaldo concludes his documentary by confessing that perhaps the Crystal Gems did save the world in one way…by keeping it weird. The episode ends with a reveal that Steven and the Crystal Gems have just watched the entire documentary on an online video-sharing host. The Crystal Gems are flabbergasted as usual, but Steven kindly clicks the “like” button because he’s a swell guy.

I love episodes where characters make poorly edited videos, especially if they think they have a masterpiece on their hands. It’s often an excuse for them to eek out a creative outlet with minimum sources, resulting in funny, but really ingenious methods to their work. Ronaldo hilariously portrays himself as a saintly hero whose acceptance of the greater truth means he’s the only one who can help those poor, lost humans, but he’s so easily caught up in the sensationalism, milking any emotional reaction he can get and comically exaggerating statements and events. By the end, he’s begging the Gems to stay in Beach City just for his own benefit even though he’s right and that their exile could very well prevent further invasions from Homeworld Gems. Ronaldo’s problem is that he’s on the ball, but is too delusional to do anything but exploit it for personal gain. I love that the only one who took this video seriously was Steven because he would go out of his way to defend the Crystal Gems even though they care so little for Ronaldo’s – and most human’s – opinion to begin with!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *