I just turned all my fingers into cats!
The episode begins with Steven and Greg, cleaning Mayor Dewey's Van and play fighting with the water hoses. After they finish cleaning, a cat holding a hose in its mouth starts spraying Steven and Greg. The cat reveals itself to be Amethyst.
Steven asks Amethyst if he could shapeshift like her as they walk to the Crystal Temple. When they arrive Amethyst shows off her shapeshifting powers, and Pearl tells Amethyst that just because she can shapeshift doesn't mean she should. Steven asks Pearl if she could shapeshift. She answers that all Gems can, and Amethyst interrupts by shapeshifting into Pearl and mocking her.
Pearl leaves and Steven asks Amethyst how to shapeshift. Amethyst explains her methods of shapeshifting, and Steven attempts to turn into a cat. He manages to transform one of his fingers into a meowing cat head. Amethyst then tells Steven to show it to his dad, and Steven runs around showing off his cat finger. Steven meets Greg at It's a Wash and shows him his morphed finger, and Greg, frightened, sprays the cat with water from a bottle.
Steven walks to the Big Donut and shows Sadie and Lars. Sadie is amused and pets the cat, making it purr. When Lars tries to pet it, however, it bites him. Sadie says it was probably playing, and Steven realizes it doesn't have any friends, so he transforms four more fingers into cats so the original finger won't be lonely. At the fry shop, Steven demands fry bits from Peedee, which he then feeds to the cat fingers. Peedee's older brother, Ronaldo, notices and takes a picture of the cats for his blog, "Keep Beach City Weird". In the process, Steven turns the fingers on his other hand into cats. He tries to pick up the phone and look at the picture, but the cat fingers screech at him for having their faces smashed into the phone.Steven returns to the Crystal Temple and asks Amethyst for help returning his fingers to normal, as the Gems are leaving to fight a "living island". Pearl insists that they stay to help Steven, but Garnet says they can't because the mission is urgent. Pearl blames Amethyst for this; Amethyst replies, "that's fair." Pearl tells Steven to stay calm as they leave.
Back at the Temple, Steven tries to revert his fingers back to normal. Unfortunately, his efforts exacerbate his condition and Steven begins to sprout writhing, meowing cat heads all over his body at a cancerous rate, and he runs to the only person who may be able to help: Greg.
By the time Steven reaches Greg, the cats have almost completely overtaken Steven's body. Greg, surprised by his appearance sprays Steven with the hose, which allows Steven's face to emerge as he begs his father for help. Greg reaches toward his son in an effort to comfort him, but one of the cat fingers bite him. Steven begins to contemplate the full extent of his condition, then suddenly realizes the only thing that can stop the cats is water. He tells Greg to spray him with the hose, but it does not produce enough water to remove the cats. Steven begs Greg to use the car wash, but Greg insists that the superwash is too dangerous. Greg finally relents and heads into the car wash as the cats almost completely consume Steven's body. Steven struggles to crawl into the car wash and is blasted by numerous jets of soap and water.
The wash successfully clears the cats from Steven's body. Before they can celebrate, they find that one cat finger is still remaining, but Greg immediately sprays it with a hose.
The Crystal Gems return the next day, and Pearl rushes to ask if Steven is okay. She then begins to lecture Steven about him listening to her instead of Amethyst, to which Amethyst agrees. Garnet interjects that the alternative lesson they all learned, was to place more faith in Steven. The episode concludes with Steven dropping several cheesy cat puns, much to the annoyance of the other Crystal Gems.
- Greg Universe
- Bill Dewey (debut)
- Mr. Fryman
- Peedee Fryman
- Ronaldo Fryman
- Lars Barriga
- Sadie Miller
- Unknown Soundtrack
- It is revealed in this episode that all of the Crystal Gems have shapeshifting powers.
- Estelle said in an interview that she thought this was the least child-friendly episode in the entire series ("Rose's Room" was the latest episode at the time of the interview). But it is her favorite episode of Season 1A.
- The promotional poster for "Cat Fingers" is a homage to the book series, Animorphs.
- Steven's transformation is similar to that of Tetsuo from the cult anime movie, Akira.
- Amethyst saying "Chill it dude" after she turned into a blue jay is a reference to Mordecai from Regular Show.
- Amethyst ate the same brand of chips Steven ate in the Pilot.
- Pearl shows her ability to project holographic images from her gem, just like she did in the episode "Cheeseburger Backpack".
- Amethyst shows her ability to shapeshift just like she did in the episode "Together Breakfast".
- Amethyst transforms into Purple Puma, who appears again in a later episode, "Tiger Millionaire".
- Peedee now runs the deep-fryer instead of his father. He was probably promoted in the episode "Frybo", after he told his dad how he wanted to be more important to the business.
- Steven's cat finger picture that was taken by Ronaldo will be seen again in "Steven's Lion" in Ronaldo's blog and again in "Story for Steven" in Greg's Van.
- In a later episode, "Keystone Motel", Steven makes a comment referring to the events of "Cat Fingers" about the car wash's brushes: "I don't like those brushes, they feel weird on your fur."
- In "Too Short to Ride", Steven briefly turns one of his fingers into a cat to show Peridot, then panics and sticks his hand in the ocean to get rid of it.
- In "Rocknaldo", Steven again turns his finger into a cat to show Ronaldo that Crystal Gems shapeshift, after which he converts it back by putting it in his mouth.
- Pearl's line "Don't bite off more than you can chew" is referenced in the episode "Garnet's Universe."
- Greg's behavior while Amethyst shows off to the Universes hints at some discomfort with shapeshifting, which he openly expresses later in "Maximum Capacity".
- In "A Single Pale Rose", the Gem Sloop is present in Pearl's gemstone.
- Note: Time is displayed in [mm:ss]; [00:00] refers to the point after the title card is displayed and before the episode's start.
- [TBA] Steven disappears from Greg's side for a split second after Mayor Dewey drives off with his van.
- [01:18] When Amethyst turns back into her normal form after turning into a cat and squirting Greg and Steven, she puts the hose down next to her. The hose disappears in a later shot.
- [01:29] Before Amethyst shapeshifts into a seal, she is already in the form of a seal.
- [TBA] The money that Steven sets on the counter disappear after the camera pans to Sadie and Lars' reaction to Steven's cat fingers.
- [05:53] When Steven opens his fridge, its door opens to the right despite its handle being on the right side of the door.
- [06:28] In the first shot after Steven has stepped into the water to chase after the Gem Sloop, Garnet's star colors are inverted.
- [01:46] While Pearl starts talking after Amethyst tells her to chill, her mouth is slightly off-centered on the side of her face for a few frames.
View the episode's transcript here.