Steven Universe is an utterly fantastic show that has no right to be as good as it is. It’s like ingesting pure joy. The characters are complex and flawed, yet likeable and endearing. The show is funny, the art and voice acting is amazing and the songs are some of the best I’ve ever seen in a TV show. I usually hate it when they do the singing episode but the songs in this are so good that they often make the best episodes. It must be said that order is important in the show because there is a heck of a lot of continuity, more so than a similar show like Adventure Time. With that paragraph of gushing out the way, I thought I’d do a quick Steven Universe skippable episodes guide to help those on the fence about getting into the show.
I remember when I first started out, I actually looked up a guide like this and found a couple of okay ones. I’m hoping this one is a bit more comprehensive. I’m gonna keep it spoiler free and only comment on the episodes where my decision may need justifying or it’s a give or take episode. With the exception of one or two very noticeable episodes which I will mention, every episode is generally worth it and even if it isn’t, so what, you wasted 10 minutes of your life – big deal. I’m gonna be focusing mainly on Season 1 because I’m going to assume that if you’ve got to the end of a 52 episode season that you like it enough to watch every episode and also because there are very few skippable episodes after season 1 apart from one very notable exception which I will mention later.
Without further adieu, this is JK Pimento’s very personal and very subjective skippable episode guide for Steven Universe.
Key: Green=Must Watch Gold=Somewhat Skippable Red=Entirely Skippable
Pilot: The pilot is entirely skippable. I never even watched it until today where I decided to youtube it. It’s a fun little 7 min thing and is probably only worth watching for fans because the difference in art style and character designs for the gems is interesting. The designs are actually a little more elaborate than they are in the final show, Pearl looks way more punkier and hip and Garnet looks like Rick James or Milli Vanili which is hilarious.
- Gem Glow: This one’s really only required coz it’s the first.
- Laser Light Cannon
- Cheeseburger Backpack: Cheeseburger backpack is an overall fun episode which sheds some light on gem history. This specific episode links to another near the end of the season and is very almost a must watch.
- Together Breakfast
- Frybo: Introduces the character of Peedee and the Fryman family who are one of the core families in Beach City. A fun episode but entirely skippable.
- Cat Fingers: Establishes the limits of the gem’s and Steven’s shapeshifting powers.
- Bubble Buddies
- Serious Steven
- Tiger Millionaire: A really fun episode which you’ll love if you’re a wrestling fan. Really only not entirely passable because of Amethyst’s character development.
- Steven’s Lion
- Arcade Mania: Mentionable because it’s the first time Garnet is seen without her shades which is important to her character later on.
- Giant Woman
- So Many Birthdays: Almost must watch episode which deals with how long the gems live and how this works in regards to Steven.
- Lars and the Cool Kids: Introduces a few notable supporting characters and expands on Rose’s personality a bit.
- Onion Trade: Similar to the last episode but really only introduces one character. I would recommend watching it only because Onion is one of the best side characters because he’s such a shitbag and his episodes are always really funny.
- Steven the Sword Fighter
- Lion 2: The Movie
- Beach Party: Essentially introduces the Pizza family, one of the key families of beach city. A pretty fun episode, making fun of the ‘beach episode’ trope as the gems get into costume, also Nanefua gets some airplay here and is one of the funniest characters on the show.
- Rose’s Room
- Coach Steven
- Joking Victim: Really one of the sweetest episodes in the season. Deals with Sadie and Lars’ relationship and is only skippable plot wise as they are two of the more important supporting characters.
- Steven and the Steven’s: Not a bad episode, just entirely skippable, although there are some throwbacks to past episodes and sneaky looks into the future.
- Monster Buddies
- An Indirect Kiss
- Mirror Gem (Part 1)
- Ocean Gem (Part 2)
- House Guest: Expands on Steven and Greg’s relationship but little else.
- Space Race
- Secret Team: Explores the dynamics of the gems and is only really not skippable because it explores parts of the temple and how it works which is cool.
- Island Adventure: Continuation of Joking Victim, watch if you’re invested in Sadie and Lars’ relationship.
- Keep Beach City Weird: Introduces Ronaldo and actually prophecises a little.
- Fusion Cuisine
- Garnet’s Universe: Super skippable unless you’re particularly attached to Garnet or are an old school RPG fan (like Zelda 1/Square Enix era rpg’s).
- Watermelon Steven: Steven gets a new power, plus a location and it’s inhabitants wont make sense for an important episode later on.
- Lion 3: Straight to Video
- Warp Tour
- Alone Together
- The Test: A strong episode which deals with how the Gems treat Steven and connects up with an earlier episode.
- Future Vision: Details a specific power of a Gem but not much else.
- On the Run
- Horror Club: A pretty good episode with a lot of horror references but little connection to overall plot.
- Winter Forecast: I would almost say that any episode with Connie is a must watch and this one is no different.
- Maximum Capacity: A really memorable episode which is all round funny, sad, and complex. Explores the relationship between Greg and Amethyst.
- Marble Madness
- Rose’s Scabbard
- Open Book: Another required Connie episode, explores Rose’s room some more.
- Shirt Club: Fun, sweet episode about the Dewey’s, another important family, and father-son relationships.
- Story for Steven
- The Message
- Political Power
- The Return (Part 1)
- Jail Break (Part 2)
Must Watch: 1,2,4,7,8,10,12,16,17,19,20,23,24,25,26,28,32,35,36,37,40,44,45,48,49,50,51,52
Somewhat Skippable: 3,6,9,13,14,27,29,34,38,39,42,43,46
Entirely Skippable: 5,11,15,18,21,22,30,31,33,41,47
Out of 52 episodes we’ve got 24 somewhat/entirely skippable episodes and 28 must watch, not bad for a first season. Let me know if you agree or disagree and why. If this gets some traction then I’ll do another one for season 2/3. If not just a heads up, the “Uncle Grandpa” episode which is number 3 of season 2 is godawful terrible. It’s so bad that Pearl says at the start of the episode “don’t worry, this isn’t canon” as if the show’s creators knew how bad it was and were acknowledging how cartoon network forced them to promote their new show. If for some reason you like Uncle Grandpa…you know…for whatever reason…then you’ll love this episode. For everyone else however, steer way clear, it almost hurts the show overall it’s that bad.
On that pleasant note, have an awesome day and let me know what you think.