- Run the episode and characters through Campbell’s ‘Hero’s Cycle’.
- Identify archetypes. Are they the same as in ‘Tiger Millionaire’?
- Are there any changes in characterisation? If so, what and why?
Jail Break is Steven Universe 49th episode of the first season (thats a lot of episodes to one season) and is about Steven helping two gem characters Ruby and Sapphire who when reunited fuse to create Garnet. Enemy character tells Garnet that fusion is a sign of weakness but Garnet sings about how she is stronger made up of two gems and that because she is a fusion she is never alone.
I thought this idea of fusion introduced in Steven Universe was such a creative idea. It relayed to audience of different ages that when you find someone who if focused on you and protecting you and you work together as a team you are stronger than you ever can be individually, that through working with other people you can become a new character of more strength and boldness. I also appreciated the authors choice of choosing two completely contrast characters to fuse into Garnet eluding to the saying ‘opposites attract’ but also a sense of perfect balance when working together with people of different strengths and personalities.
Steven the Helper is called to action when he awakes in a jail cell to the sound of someone singing, He then crosses the threshold when he escapes the cell to ally with character ruby and sapphire and then garnet. The ordeal occurs when the characters battle over the control of the ship and crash land onto earth. Steven and his friends join together to have a final battle with jasper and the fight is won. Finally Steven returns to normal however with a new understanding and excitement of Garnets character.
There is a large variation of character archetypes in Steven Universe as there is in any good story.
- Hero, Steven is the only one who can break out of the jail and uses this to save a total of 5 characters including himself and excluding the character that did not wish to be saved. (that goes down to 4 characters when 2 of the fuse together, confusing? watch the episode, just saying)
- Magician, Steven is the only one who is resistant to the jail wall.
- Caregiver, Steven tells Lapis that he wants to fight the bad guys because they hurt his friends, he is protective over his friends.
In tiger millionaire Steven acts the rebel and the jester when he joins a secret fight club however this is different to his hero magician character in jailbreak. Garnets character also contrasts to tiger millionaire, this is because we have previously only seen Garnet as the strong ruler character with hero, sage qualities. However in Jail break we see Garnet as the victim instead, as the story progresses we see that she is a lover and can also be the hero.
Garnet shows us that even leaders and people we look up two can fall apart sometimes. Her two fusion gems describes to us how we can be in split minds and split confidences even we are in an environment that is not building us up and fulfilling us. I admire Steven in that when he discovers Garnet has weaknesses and needs help to put herself back together again he still reacts with excitement and love and is eager to understand Garnet more.
Watch the episode here: