I saw this as a possibility, but I’m surprised that this is the path we’re taking.
This episode acts as a transition from the concentrated plot arcs of Season 2 back into more episodic narratives, removing any immediate threats so that life can start getting back to normal.
Lapis: You really weren’t kidding.
Peridot: I disobeyed a direct order from Yellow Diamond and called her a clod to her face.
Pearl: Oh, honestly, you call everyone a clod.
Peridot: But not everyone has command of all the armies of Homeworld waiting for the order to shatter me!
The ship contains a team of five rubies, so Garnet decides to split up so her Ruby can infiltrate them and find out what they’re after (and, y’know, keep them away from Peridot).
Ruby: What are we all doing over here?
Ruby: Yeah, what are we all doing here?
Ruby: We’re here to retrieve the leader of the Earth mission! Hey, wait a second. It seems like there are more of us than usual!
Ruby: There’s supposed to be five of us.
Ruby: One, two, three, four, five. Never mind!
Good thing rubies is dumb. But unfortunately our Ruby is also kind of dumb (especially under so much pressure) and promptly points out the barn where the Crystal Gems are hiding.
So when Ruby goes back to “search”, they decide to send her back out with a little backup in the form of Steven.
Ruby: I checked the barn, and I just found a bunch of humans!
Steven: Yep, nothing in there but us humans!
Ruby: Looks like we failed! Time to go back home.
Ruby: I think we’d better double check. You remember last time.
Ruby: Last time?
Ruby: Oh, Ruby, you’re so forgetful! […]
Ruby: Wait! You can’t because…
Steven: You have to…play baseball! Yeah! It’s a human thing! If you win, you can go inside, and if you lose, you…gotta leave forever.
Lapis: This plan sucks.
So the other Gems (besides Peridot) go out and pretend to be humans to play a game of baseball with entrance to the barn at stake. And nobody even thinks to have Peridot sneak out while the rubies are occupied with the game. But at least they don’t know enough about humans to question blue and purple ones.
It’s a surprisingly even match, with all of the “humans” being decent except Sapphire, who’s constantly distracted by the catcher, “her” Ruby, while said Ruby does her best to sabotage her own team (except occasionally when distracted by Sapphire). You see the problem.
Steven: What’s going on? What are they doing?
This is the first time we get to see Ruby and Sapphire (try to) work together on something, and boy do they have a bad case of lovey-dovey.
Naturally, it all comes down to the bottom of the ninth. And Sapphire has to get a home run, when she hasn’t hit a thing yet.
Ruby: Come on, I know you can do it! Just look at the ball.
Sapphire: I’m trying, but all I want to look at is you.
Ruby: Don’t worry. You can look at me when you’re running for home.
So she hits the home run…and is so happy to see Ruby at home plate that they fuse again.
Then they all fuse into a giant ruby…and reveal that they haven’t really been looking for Peridot.
Peridot: Wait! Wait, stop! Don’t hurt them! Wait! Please, please! It’s me you’re after, right? I’m not gonna stand by and let my friends fight my battles!
Steven: Aw, Peri loves us!
Ruby: Are you the peridot assigned to the failed Earth mission?
Peridot: Not sure if “failed” would be the right word to-
Ruby: Where is Jasper?
Turns out that Jasper was considered the leader, which certainly makes sense considering the reverence their culture seems to have for warriors and the military.
Peridot: Wait, but I’m the one who betrayed the mission! Who called Yellow Diamond a clod! The new leader of the Crystal Gems?
It’s a blow to Peri’s ego, but nothing worse. Since they don’t actually know where Jasper is, though (and would rather not have the rubies hanging around and scouring the Earth for her), they say she’s on Neptune. And the rubies buy it unquestioningly.
I’m pretty sure that title was intended to troll the viewers into thinking this would be about the Diamonds (I certainly thought so), but once I got past that disappointment, it was actually not a bad episode.
Until next time…