The Disaster Combo is back and more of a disaster than ever (but that might not be a bad thing).
Steven’s naturally pretty excited about his victory with Connie, but not so excited that he’s totally oblivious to how badly Amethyst is taking her defeat (I mean, she IS doing things mostly to annoy Pearl, which is typically her way of expressing unhappiness).
Steven: You want to come watch me train?
Amethyst: Can’t. Busy making egg salad.
Steven: Come on, it’ll be fun! You’ll get to see me earn Pearl Points!
Pearl: Pearl Points are awarded for punctuality, perseverance, and positivity! We may be smaller, weaker, and less gifted than our opponents, but with these three P’s we have the keys to success! And to the Pearl Prize Pouch!
It makes sense that Pearl would look for other ways to motivate Steven – Connie’s very driven, but Steven tends to have trouble focusing.
And after her recent (perceived) failure, Amethyst figures she’ll give training a shot, too…but even that goes wrong.
Pearl: Good thinking, Amethyst. Going easy on him will build his confidence!
Amethyst: What can I say? I’m a natural at going easy.
Amethyst loses every task to Steven, even though she’s clearly trying really hard (if not necessarily her “best”). Steven notices, so he sets about trying to cheer her up with video games.
Steven: That was crazy good, Amethyst! Nice job.
Amethyst: Knock it off, Steven, I know you let me win.
Steven: What, me? No, I- no…
Amethyst: You weren’t even trying.
Steven: I’m sorry. I just wanted you to feel better.
Amethyst: Great, now you’re even more mature than me.
Amethyst: You’re supposed to be the rookie, but now you’re better than me at everything! Now I’m the worst Crystal Gem.
Amethyst might not be terribly perceptive, but even she can tell when Steven’s trying to fake it. But now he’s actually starting to get angry, which means he’s being open about his own feelings for once.
Steven: I thought you guys wanted me to be strong! And now I am, and you’re mad at me?
Amethyst: No! I get mad at myself! That’s the thing I do! I get mad at myself, and then it makes me suck at everything I do even more.
Steven: Amethyst you don’t suck. You do so many cool things! You have two whips – two whips! And the dash thing? Amethyst, you’re so much better than me!
Amethyst: No way. You have Rose’s shield, and bubble, and the floating thing – I’d just be floating all day!
Steven: Floating? I forget to use that half the time! And the rest of the time my powers aren’t even guaranteed to work! I’m way worse than you!
It’s honestly kind of cute how they’re using compliments as put-downs in their little competition over who’s “the worst”. But of course the only way to really settle the score is to have a fight.
Let the worst Gem lose!
Amethyst: No holding back?
Steven: No holding back!
Well, it’s not quite “no holds barred”, as they’re obviously doing their best not to kill or maim each other, but it’s still way more intense than Steven’s sparring match with Connie last episode.
Amethyst: What? Is that new? Because it’s awesome!
Steven: No! It was an accident! Accidents are not awesome!
Amethyst: Sure, right.
Kids, you are BOTH awesome! Just accept it already!
Amethyst: See? I dropped you from the sky, and you almost just won using a rock! If I can’t beat you, I’m never gonna beat Jasper!
Steven: You can totally beat me. You’re not even trying.
Amethyst: I am too!
Steven: I think we’re both too good at being bad fighters.
Amethyst: That’s what you think!
Steven: What does that even mean?
Amethyst: I don’t even know!
These two are adorable. And now that they’re too tired to fight anymore, they can talk about their Feelings!
Steven: What’s wrong with us?
Amethyst: I know what’s wrong with me. I’m not supposed to be small. And everyone’s always acting like there’s no problem. “You can be anything you wanna be!” No, I can’t! I can’t even be the one thing I’m supposed to be, you know?
Steven: Of course I do. I’m…not Rose Quartz.
Amethyst: Oh, no. Oh, Steven!
Steven: Why do you think I’ve been working so hard?
Amethyst: Well, it’s paying off.
Amethyst is trying to live up to the standards of Homeworld, while Steven is trying to live up to his mother’s legacy – and they’re both equally impossible. Amethyst will never be as strong as Jasper, and Steven will never truly replace Rose. That’s just not who they are, and as long as they’re trying to be someone else, they’ll never be happy with themselves.
Pearl: What did you two do? You’ve ruined the ruins!
Until next time…