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Gem Glow

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I summon my weapon by eating ice cream!

Gem Glow
Season 1, Episode 1
Broadcast Information

November 4, 2013

Production Code



1.861 million [1]

Written by

Joe Johnston
Jeff Liu

Directed by

Ki-Yong Bae, Jin-Hee Park & Seon-Jae Lee (animation)
Kevin Dart (art)
Ian Jones-Quartey (co-executive producer)

Storyboard by

Joe Johnston
Jeff Liu

Episode Guide
"Laser Light Cannon"

"Gem Glow" is the 1st episode in the first season of Steven Universe, and the 1st episode overall in the series.


Steven thinks his favorite ice cream sandwiches are the trick to summoning his magic shield, but he learns otherwise when facing off with an acid-spewing insect monster.



Steven crying over Cookie Cat.

Steven is at the Big Donut shouting in despair after finding that Cookie Cat has been discontinued due to a recent competitor, Lion Lickers. Sadie lets him take the freezer it was originally sold in. When he gets home, he finds Amethyst, Pearl, and Garnet locked in battle with Centipeetles that have invaded Steven's room. They destroy most of them, but have not found the gem that normally appears with enemies. Garnet believes there's a mother Centipeetle somewhere. Steven shoos one from the fridge and finds many Cookie Cats in the freezer. The gems explain how they got some from a nearby factory. He is so happy he begins to sing the Cookie Cat theme song from a television advertisement. He then takes a bite out of a Cookie Cat, and his gem starts to glow. Amethyst tells him to try to summon his weapon, but Steven does not know how. Eventually the Gem stops glowing, and Steven is sad. He asks to be taught how to summon a weapon, and Pearl volunteers to show him first.


Pearl teaching Steven on how to summon his weapon.

She takes him to a tree with many petals, and tells him that each petal falling to the ground is moving precisely in accordance with the Earth around it, and that this can be mastered by training hard. She then summons her spear as a demonstration. Steven picks a handful of petals, but is utterly confused. Steven then goes to Amethyst, who is behind the Big Donut. Amethyst explains that whenever she needs her weapon, it comes to her. She demonstrates by pulling out her whip and slicing a dumpster in half. Steven is confused by this, because it is the opposite of what Pearl told him. He visits Garnet last, on top of the Crystal Temple. He asks if he has to train hard and not worry at the same time, to which she replies affirmatively. She tells him the alternative is to connect with all living matter and energy around him, which is her method for pulling out her gauntlets. Steven remains utterly confused.

Gem Glow Steven 01

Steven's Gem Glow.

Steven decides to do it his own way, by recreating what happened when his gem started to glow. He attempts to make everything exactly as it was before, and sings his song again. This fails, and he thinks he is not cut out to be a Crystal Gem. The others think he is being silly, and reassure him that he is one of them. He eats another Cookie Cat, when his gem suddenly starts glowing brighter than it did before. It glows to the point where his weapon is finally revealed: a shield. The others bask, and Steven yells in happiness. His shield starts bouncing around the house and smashes into a TV, which Amethyst finds hilarious.


Centipeetle Mother attacks again.

Steven thinks that he can summon his weapon by eating ice cream. When Pearl looks at the wrapper, wondering what its ingredients are, the ground suddenly starts rumbling, and the mother Centipeetle appears outside. Amethyst, Pearl, and Garnet go outside, but they tell Steven to stay inside. They engage in battle, but Steven grabs the Cookie Cat freezer and many Cookie Cats, and goes outside to help. The Gems are trapped, apparently losing. Steven captures its attention and eats a Cookie Cat. However, he fails to summon his weapon and runs away. He desperately eats the remaining Cookie Cats, wondering why it's not working. When he sees the Cookie Cat freezer is damaged, he is distraught and gets a new wave of courage. He grabs it by the plug and throws the broken freezer at the mother, electrocuting it. The Gems then defeat the mother, and Garnet bubbles its gem away.

S01Ep01 Of Course They Don't Come From Ice Cream

Steven buries the wrappers and cries a little. With the aid of the Crystal Gems, he resolves that he is unable to summon his weapon by eating ice cream. Then the gems cheer him up by saying that he'll be able to figure it out, "in his own Steven-y way". He then says he might have ate too many Cookie Cats and then Pearl and Amethyst laugh. Before the iris closes in on him, he throws up.







  • The Crystal Palace, referred to in the Pilot, is now called the Crystal Temple.
  • In the storyboards, Pearl had an extra line, but it was removed for unknown reasons.
  • "Steven's Shield", the song that plays when Steven activates his gemstone, was the first piece of music composed for Steven Universe.[2]
  • This episode was available on iTunes as a free download before it officially aired on Cartoon Network.
  • This is the first episode to end with a star-shaped iris, which is to appear again in many episodes after.
  • When Garnet was demonstrating how to summon her weapons, a soundtrack similar to "Synchronize/Sugilite" can be heard playing as background music.
  • If one looks closely, one can see that Crying Breakfast Friends! was airing on Steven's T.V. when he got home.
  • The background music for the Cookie Cat song was composed on a GameBoy.
  • This episode has the second most errors of the series, with 10 errors.

Cultural References

  • "I'm stocking here", said by Lars at the beginning of the episode, is a reference to busy New York as portrayed on TV. "I'm walking here!" Is a common phrase.



  • When Steven turns his head, his reflection on the mini freezer is the complete opposite of the direction of where his head is.
    Steven Gem Glow Error
  • When Steven is panicking as his gem's glow is fading, the star on his shirt disappears.
  • At one point, the Cookie Cat wrappers on the ground near Steven disappear in the next scene.
  • When Amethyst was telling Steven how she "didn't try at all" in summoning her weapon, her tongue appears to be deep purple for a second.
  • After Steven rushes through the Cookie Cat song a second time, the colors of Garnet's stars are reversed.
  • When the Centipeetle attempts to spew more acid on the Crystal Gems, the lower part of Amethyst's tank top is colored white.
  • When the Crystal Gems brought Steven the Cookie Cats, there were a lot in his fridge. However, when battling the Centipeetle, after Steven eats 4 or 5 Cookie Cats, all of the other Cookie Cats disappear.
  • When the gems were fighting the Centipeetle, the beach was a grassland rather than a sandy beach like it's supposed to be.
  • When Garnet picks up the Centipeetle's gem, she uses her left hand, but when she bubbles it away, she is seen using her right hand.
  • When the Centipeetle Mother climbed the house, Garnet's star colors are reversed again.
  • When the Centipeetle mother climbs the Temple, she is also followed by a few Centipeetles, which disappear as the Gems leave the Beach House.
  • When Steven is done rushing the Cookie Cat song, Pearl's socks disappear.
  • After Steven summons his shield, he throws the Cookie Cat in his hand in shock. However, it is seen in his other hand.


View the episode's transcript here.


Click here to view the gallery.



  1. The Futon Critic staff (2013-11-05). Monday's Cable Ratings & Broadcast Finals: MNF Trumps Voice in Demos, Viewers. Ratings. The Futon Critic. Retrieved on 2013 November 5.

ve Episode List
Pilot Pilot
Season 1 A: Gem GlowLaser Light CannonCheeseburger BackpackTogether BreakfastFryboCat FingersBubble BuddiesSerious StevenTiger MillionaireSteven's LionArcade ManiaGiant WomanSo Many BirthdaysLars and the Cool KidsOnion TradeSteven the Sword FighterLion 2: The MovieBeach PartyRose's RoomCoach StevenJoking VictimSteven and the StevensMonster BuddiesAn Indirect KissMirror GemOcean Gem

B: House GuestSpace RaceSecret TeamIsland AdventureKeep Beach City WeirdFusion CuisineGarnet's UniverseWatermelon StevenLion 3: Straight to VideoWarp TourAlone TogetherThe TestFuture VisionOn the RunHorror ClubWinter ForecastMaximum CapacityMarble MadnessRose's ScabbardOpen BookShirt ClubStory for StevenThe MessagePolitical PowerThe ReturnJail Break

Season 2 A: Full DisclosureJoy RideSay UncleLove LettersReformedSworn to the SwordRising Tides, Crashing SkiesKeeping it TogetherWe Need to TalkChille TidCry for HelpKeystone MotelOnion FriendHistorical FrictionFriend ShipNightmare HospitalSadie's SongCatch and ReleaseWhen It RainsBack to the BarnToo Far

Unknown:Super Watermelon IslandGem DrillBarn MatesSame Old WorldHit the DiamondSteven FloatsToo Short to RideDrop Beat DadMr. GregThe New LarsBeach City DriftRestaurant WarsKiki's Pizza Delivery ServiceMonster ReunionAlone at SeaGreg the BabysitterGem HuntCrack the WhipSteven vs. AmethystBeta Part 1Earthlings Part 2Back 2 the Moon Part 3BubbledThe Kindergarten KidGem HarvestKnow Your FusionTiger PhilanthropistLast One Out of Beach City

Shorts Just Lion ThingsWhat Are Gems?We Are The Crystal GemsHow Are Gems Made?

Start a Discussion Discussions about Gem Glow

  • Wait A Second...

    11 messages
    • It probably did sometimes glow when he was little but it glowed in the first episode because he was so happy.
    • Steven Bomb 17 wrote: It probably did sometimes glow when he was little but it glowed in the first episode because he was so happy.
  • I heard something in Gem Glow

    6 messages
    • I knew about the song but I never NOTICED it was the same song... huh! never noticed XP
    • Sugilite's theme "Synchronize" seems more of a fusion of both Amythet's beats from her theme (also in the episode) and some elements from Garne...

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