Steven Universe – Episode 64 “Keystone Motel”

Ep. #64
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: Jul. 14th, 2015
SYNOPSIS: Garnet accompanies Steven and Greg to the Keystone state, but her inner conflicts causes her to split back into Ruby and Sapphire.

The fusion incident is still fresh in everyone’s mind. Pearl has spent the last few days trying to locate Peridot, hoping Garnet will trust her again. The latter is still not speaking to her. The tension is temporarily broken when Greg barges in with an announcement: he’s going on a road trip to a neighboring state (Keystone) to pick up some car wash brushes he ordered from a man on the internet. Steven is excited since it’ll be his first time staying at a motel, but even more excited when Greg tells him it’s right next to the “best diner in the world.” To everyone’s surprise, Garnet wants to tag along, too.

Garnet holds herself together – figuratively and literally – until they reach the motel. After Greg leaves to pick up his order, she splits herself back into Ruby and Sapphire. It seems the two have been arguing amongst each other for some time: Ruby is angry at Pearl and incredulous that Sapphire isn’t as offended. She doesn’t feel like forgiving Pearl at all while Sapphire thinks they should end the drama now so they can all move on. Ruby storms off in response. Poor Steven, he’s caught between a rock and a hard place.

Steven catches Ruby near the motel swimming pool. He invites her in so she can cool off. Ruby literally walks into the pool and paces back and forth, ranting about Sapphire and how they have to be the bigger Gem about this. Her frustrations trigger her fiery powers, causing the pool to reach boiling temperature. Steven can no longer swim, so he returns to his room only to be greeted with freezing cold air, courtesy of Sapphire. Steven tries to engage in conversation, suggesting that the two Gems talk it out, but Sapphire knows Ruby won’t. It’s alright, everything will eventually be fixed because she used her Future Vision to foresee it. That’s why she’s got everything under control, though the ice developing around her proves otherwise.

Greg returns with brushes – and pizza – in tow. Steven informs his father about Ruby and Sapphire, thinking they need to patch up. Greg tells him that Ruby and Sapphire just needs some space, but it’ll be better in the morning. After all, they’re going to the Best Diner Ever.

It does not get better the next day. Greg tries to lighten the mood during breakfast, but Ruby is still annoyed that Sapphire is acting “high and mighty” over this situation. Sapphire thinks Ruby is just being a big baby who’ll eventually get over it. It’s enough for Ruby to produce her gauntlet and smash the table over. That was the last straw. Steven drops his meal and storms off.

Ruby and Sapphire trail after him. Steven finally gives the two an earful. He was so happy when Garnet came along because he thought they’d have a fun road trip. Home’s been awful and now this mini-vacation has been a disaster zone, too. He can’t take it anymore and wonders if this is his fault somehow. Ruby and Sapphire quickly tells Steven that he’s fine and everything that’s transpired is on their hands. Sapphire realizes that in using her Future Vision, she ignores what is happening now. Of course things will get better, but it isn’t at the present time and for her to brush that off means invalidating other people’s feelings. Sapphire cries, upset she hurt Steven and Ruby like that. Ruby jumps in to comfort her and tells her she’s right; what she wanted was to stay mad instead of figuring out a solution. The two make up with cuddles and kisses, reverting back to Garnet. Vacationed out, the three head back home. There Garnet tells Pearl she’s not ready to speak with her, but that little interaction is enough for now.

So many shows are content to build a blossoming romance with all the trials and tribulations that come with it. Rarer is the series that digs into an already established couple and their personal problems. Couples argue and “Keystone Motel” intricately deal with this issue between Ruby and Sapphire’s conflicting viewpoints. What’s great about their discourse is that it doesn’t fall into a pit where their relationship is threatened for the sake of tension. Ruby and Sapphire eventually settled their differences because they mutually love and respect each other. Progress has been made, but the Crystal Gems aren’t out of the woodwork yet.

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