Steven Universe Vlogs: Episode 58 – Sworn to the Sword

Connie learns how to become a master sword fighter, but are Pearl’s teachings going too far? Doug and Rob discuss episode 58 of Steven Universe, Sworn to the Sword.

About Doug Walker

Creator of 5 Second Movies, Nostalgia Critic, Bum Reviews and more.

30 comments

  1. I’ll agree the episode starts out fairly charming, but it starts going down a pretty dark road about halfway through that song.

    IMO, this is probably the scariest episode of the show at time of writing.

    • Actually, I can tell you exactly where this episode took a dark turn.

      “What they don’t know
      Is your real advantage,
      When you live for someone
      You’re prepared to die.”

  2. ‘nother Ronaldo episode next. Brace yourselves.

  3. “WHY WON’T YOU JUST LET ME DO THIS FOR YOU, ROSE?!”

    This has to be one of the best episode from either season thus far. The action, songs, and emotional beats were so well put together. At first, the new intro threw me off as well, but it makes sense to have one now that the Gems have all gone through design changes. At some point, I imagine they’ll have Stevonnie wielding Rose’s sword and Steven’s shield in battle.

    Although Pearl’s connection with Rose has always been present, this is really only the second episode to bring it to the forefront. Regardless, they will soon see another side of Pearl that was kind of foreshadowed in Sworn to the Sword. Another bit of visual foreshadowing I liked was the four diamonds engraved on the sky arena.

    • If those are even the Diamonds, lol. One of them looks like it might be Yellow, but the other two don’t seem to quite match up with how they look in the other images and stuff.

    • You know, after thinking about it, I think Pearl really did have some character development here. She doesn’t have any problem with sacrificing herself, but when it’s Connie, who’s Steven’s friend, and a kid… She does start to see that there’s something wrong with projecting those ideals onto her, and maybe with the ideals themselves. It’s sublte, but I do think you start questioning here whether this idea of knighthood is really something she should build her identity around.

  4. You know, I actually think the show writers agreed with Doug, that they had these episodes that were getting into the Gems but really they just kept covering old territory. That rather than get more into them it was more reminding the audience of reasons to dislike them. And it kind of started to cross the line with the third Stevenbomb. It’s kind of why I think Peridot started featuring in more episodes to inject more “new blood”…but…you’ll see what I’m talking about.

    That said, I love this episode too.

    • I think it was more about logical character progression, and in the third Stevenbomb a lot of Pearl’s underlying issues that led to her somewhat unhealthy relationship and later fixation on Rose. It’s there that we begin to get to the root of WHY Pearl feels like she has to be needed by someone, and by the end of it she’s finally made to confront her own issues instead of ignoring them, which improves her relationship with the other characters.

    • And to add onto what lordlaharl said, it’s not like Peridot just sort-of appeared and took over. There’s still focus on the other gems as well, but they just needed to take time to focus on her since introducing a new member of the group is a big deal and you kind-of need to show how their personality works off of all of the other major characters before moving forward in a series like this. Plus it did build up to the next huge plotpoint, so the focus isn’t exactly unwarranted from a story perspective, either.

    • I would say the third steven bomb treaded new grounds for Pearl(and all of the crystal gems). Rose wasn’t really mentioned till the last episode and it was more about Pearl’s deeper issues that lead her to becoming obsessed with Rose.

  5. This was actually the first Steven Universe episode that I did a written review for, and it is still one of my favorites. I’m curious how the Walkers will feel about the next episode given the fact that, as much as I hate Ronaldo, I actually gave it a pretty good rating… I’m quite curious.

  6. Don’t worry Doug, later Pearl episodes start to focus more on her own underlying insecurities and why she has dependency issues.

  7. Aaaah, this is one of my favorite episodes, I’ve been waiting for you guys to review it! You talked about how Pearl is defined by her relationship to Rose. But I think more than that, it has to do with her self-definition. I’m not sure how much difference it makes, but… Yeah, her loyalty to Rose is definitely what she thinks is at the core of who she is. I think it also makes her feel closer to Rose, like, she was the one who loved her most and was most devoted to her. That’s why being self-sacrificing ultimately made her feel more important.

  8. And in this episode we have Pearl trying to tunr a young girl into an suicidal honor guard.

    However, this episode is more about Connie wanting to take a more active role in Stevens adventures but loosing her self worth about it. It’s one of the running themes of the show: giving yourself up completly in a relationship is not a good idea. It was kinda similiar in Alone Together where Steven and Connie already felt they should split about even before they where hit on at the rave and its also a running theme with Pearl and her relationsip to Rose wich was just not very healthy. There’s alot going on in this episode if you put it in the larger context of the show.

  9. All seagulls must die.
    Together we are Jam Buds!
    We fight as equals!

    Connie is my favorite character in the show overall and Pearl has always been my favorite Gem, so this episode was an instant classic for me. Not only do both characters get to sing (a first for Grace Rolek), but they get a duet. We finally get a payoff to the episodes that foreshadowed Connie having a knack for martial skill. The new intro sequence was just icing on the cake.

    I’m in agreement with Doug that this run of episodes really drove the Rose/Pearl plot into the ground. It wasn’t too bad in this one, but by the end of this block of episodes it started to feel excessive. There are so many facets to Pearl’s character: musician, artist, engineer, mother, soldier, it’s somewhat frustrating to see all of that swept to the side to focus on one aspect of her character to the detriment of all others.

    With that complaint lodged, this is still my favorite episode of the series as of this writing. Great songs, stellar action sequences, funny, sweet, and heartbreaking. It touches on so many character traits and plot points from previous episodes (Pearl’s devotion to Rose, Connie’s insecurity about her own worth in comparison to Steven) and made it look effortless. Can’t get enough of this episode.

  10. I agree that the audience didn’t need to hear Pearl name drop Rose, but Connie did. Connie isn’t that aware of Pearl’s history and wouldn’t have known to ask “Did Rose make you feel like nothing?” if Pearl didn’t make it obvious to CONNIE that it was actually about Rose.

    • That is a good point, but it’s still feels a little forced. There definitely is a way to get Connie to ask that question without Pearl’s line directly name dropping Rose. Still its hardly a mark against the episode.

  11. I think this is actually my favorite episode for now. Yes, even including the new Steven Bomb. It’s just so perfect from start to finish.

    Anyway, the next episode is gonna be funny to watch them react to XD

  12. Really enjoyed this episode and yet not really. Enjoyed it cause the connie and steven interaction and it shows their friendship grow even deeper and how much they mean to eachother and how it shows noone has to carry all the burden and soly be the protector. Also found the scene with steven picturing pearl poofing over and and over,but when connie came up he freaked out since well no poof. I didint enjoy it since it revealed the true pearl to us. How pearl does have some rocks loose in the head and how pearl can be well annoying.

  13. Follow up comment to come but at least I am farther than I was before the weekend. I’m at least on Political Power now. Also, due to your comment at 10:40, I have a sudeen desire for Tommy Wiseau to have a voice cameo in Steven Universe. 😀

  14. Ah come one Doug and Rob, don’t be so hard on the geese. Besides it was technically the people’s fault there are so many of them in the first place, and being more of a menace to them and they are to you.

    Well, props to acknowledging that birds are dinosaurs thought.

  15. I would agree that odds are the majority of watchers realized that Pearl was thinking of Rose through the training but remember Steven was 13 I believe so odds are he wouldn’t pick up on the subtext and Pearl was lost in her own world. I believe the line “Why wont you let me do this for you Rose” was said for the characters benefit and not the audience. Again Steven might not have maturity to realize it and some times people have to say thing out loud to realize what they are doing or why.

  16. Neo-stalgia Fan 1

    Don’t worry Doug, you’ll get what you’re craving. You tend to crave things at just the right moments, lol.

    I don’t know if you and Rob actually check down here, but if you were looking for ideas for any other cartoon shows from Cartoon Network, I would actually like to recommend an older show from the 00’s, Codename: Kids Next Door. After giving it another watch as an adult, I found that there SO MANY hilarious references and jokes in this show that, coupled with the action and the solid voice work, make it a truly nostalgic show for this generation, and I totally think you guys would get a real kick out of it. Great acting, great humor, great action, it’s literally about childhood itself, what’s not to love!? Keep it in mind, I guarantee you won’t regret it.

  17. This was a unexpected episode
    Good opening but these new episodes we want an even more new opening
    Steven is not Rose

  18. One of my favorite episodes of the series, probably only second to jail break. Connie was already my favorite, and making her a swordsman(which I was already anticipating from Lion 2) just makes her even more awesome. I agree that Pearl yelling Rose near the end was a bit forced(but it can be argued that it was for the characters, rather than the audience). Also I felt having her confusing do it for him for her so early in the song was a tiny bit unnecessary. Still they are minor blemishes on this excellent episode.

  19. It’s not as forced if you consider that the point of Pearl’s arc in this episode isn’t that Pearl loved Rose. We’ve established that already. The point of this episode is that, as Rose’s self-appointed bodyguard, Pearl thinks she failed Rose and, coincidentally, the result of that failure is currently messing up her attempt at redemption. And also, she tends to go a little Sirius Black on her bad days.

  20. Star vs. The Forces of Evil vlogs, please.

  21. I too quite like this episode mostly for the same reasons as you two. In hindsight though I do kind of feel like this is the episode were I kind of started to dislike Connie. Mostly because I felt she became much more of a wish fulfilment character. Which is something I personally really dislike.

    You want pearl to have some other flaws/character traits not involving Rose? HehehehhehahahahahahHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    As a lover of puns. I strongly approve of your actions Rob.

  22. There is some Freduian stuff going on with Pearl. LOL. The fight scene (or scenes) in this episode was awesome. Also, I like the new opening.

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