DVD Reviews

June 6, 2016

‘Steven Universe: The Return’ DVD Review

Cartoon Network’s Steven Universe has been a hit for the network since its premiere season in 2013. Though it’s now on its third season and has fans all over the world, this is my first time jumping into the series and what better way to start a series other than with a collection of episodes personally curated by the creator of the series, Rebecca Sugar. Sugar picked “the best” episodes from seasons 1 & 2 and put them into this new collection called Steven Universe: The Return. Seven Universe: The Return hits DVD June 7 but we have an advanced review for you!


In this collection of episodes, Steven Universe and the team of Crystal Gems band together to, you guessed it, protect the universe!…from a couple of evil villains. The collection includes twelve episodes which are: “Mirror Gem”, “Ocean Gem”, “Space Race”, “Lion 3: Straight to Video”, “Warp Tour”, “Alone Together”, “On the Run”, “Marble Madness”, “Rose’s Scabbard”, “The Message”, “The Return” and “Jailbreak”.

What seems to be the trend in today’s animated series is that a lot of the episodes consist of a lot of random stuff happening that have nothing to do with the story arch. Yes, I know they are just cartoons but you do see that they try to tell a story and sometimes with all of the distractions going on, it makes those stories hard to follow. Well in this particular collection, Rebecca Sugar picked episodes that all tell one huge story, and that’s a good thing. For a person like me who has never seen an episode of Steven Universe, until now, it was easy to follow and I knew what was going on right away.

This series continues to follow in the footsteps of other popular Cartoon Network series with having a runtime of eleven minutes per episode. This means that each episode is pretty much an animated “short”. With only eleven minutes an episode, you would think that it would be harder to show character development with an ensemble of characters, but this series develops each character pretty well. And even though I prefer the average twenty-two minute runtimes of most animated series, the “short” runtime makes it easier to binge-watch; so that can be a plus.

As for special features for this collection, there aren’t any, and that’s disappointing. I think with any in-home release, there should be special features included. It not only adds more content but it gives more value to the costumer. Often with collections like this that come from Cartoon Network, there are little to none when it comes to special features. After reviewing numerous Cartoon Network in-home releases, I realized that the special features are usually only included in the animated films or with an entire season in-home release.


For entering this crazy world of Steven Universe for the first time, I have to say that this was the best way to do so. The Steven Universe: The Return collection made sense, it had a feel of the popular 80’s sci-fi animated series mixed with modern day humor. It’s a bummer that there aren’t any special features but with this DVD going for around $14.97 SRP, it’s not a bad price for over two hours of a series.

I give Steven Universe: The Return 3 out of 5.

About the Author

Chris Salce
Chris Salce
I'm a pop culture fanatic based out of Southern California. My collection of comics and pop culture memorabilia would even impress The Collector. When I'm not busy writing about pop culture news, doing film reviews or interviewing celebs, my brother and I work on a comic book called Blood-RED (And yes, that was a cheap plug). I have a certificate of completion for a children’s storybook writing program.



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