Steven Universe: Wanted

TV review by
Jenny Nixon, Common Sense Media
Steven Universe: Wanted TV Poster Image
Steven Universe's world goes dark in game-changing special.

Parents say

age 10+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 6 reviews

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The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Characters may be flawed (like real people), but their love for one another is palpable. An over-arching theme of this miniseries event is self-sacrifice for the greater good.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Our heroes try hard to work together, even when their personalities clash or things aren't going their way. Emphasis on friendship and family, especially among those who are deemed "different."


As with the rest of the series, there are battle scenes among the Gems featuring lasers, whips, and an assortment of otherworldly weapons. Striking in this miniseries is the on-screen death of a human character. Though not bloody or graphic, it's a somber scene that may upset younger viewers.


Some references to "butts."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Steven Universe: Wanted is a four-episode arc kicking off Steven Universe's fifth season, and that it aired as an hour-long "special event." (The individual episodes are titled "Stuck Together," "The Trial," "Off Colors," and "Lars' Head.") Though the bright and poppy-looking show has always had an underlying sense of foreboding (it is, after all, about a kid with a dead mom, who's being pursued by angry beings from another galaxy), Wanted ups the stakes considerably, with moments of deep sadness and even a human death. The subject is portrayed matter-of-factly and sensitively -- it is not a senseless or gratuitous death -- but it still may trouble younger viewers.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byHyoh M. July 17, 2017


SO INTERESTING!!!!! It adds a lot to the already deep Steven Universe plot, and it also generates a plethora of questions you may be thinking about in the futur... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written bysmthngfnny June 4, 2018

Love it

This is even better than the rest of the series. The rest of the series is slow in pace with too many episodes that don't tell you anything special about t... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byAudiSuoodi P. August 18, 2017


Adventure time is better but still cool

What's the story?

Picking up right where the finale of Season Four left off, in STEVEN UNIVERSE: WANTED, our titular hero Steven Universe (Zach Callison) finds himself trapped on a ship headed straight to Homeworld, the mythical birthplace of the Gems, which has long been spoken of -- but never seen. To prevent his kidnappers from abducting his human friends and family as well, he has falsely identified himself as his deceased mother, Rose Quartz, and will stand trial to pay for her crimes. Things get complicated when it is revealed that Beach City's grumpiest donut cook, Lars (Matthew Moy), has hidden himself away on the spaceship as well. The two frenemies have to work together to try to save each other and the Earth, and they encounter a whole host of new, strange, and sometimes threatening creatures along the way.

Is it any good?

This four-episode "special event" marks a huge tonal shift for the show. The dark and brooding elements of Steven's backstory bubble to the surface here, but Steven Universe: Wanted manages to retain real heart and humor while expanding its mythology. Perhaps most noteworthy is the depiction of male friendships. Steven and Lars learn to be vulnerable and honest with one another about their feelings, which isn't something we always see in adventure-based shows, especially between males. There's also a thought-provoking storyline about a group of "Off Colors" -- a roaming band of Gems who have been rejected for their imperfections, and who fear being shattered by the higher-ups of Homeworld, the Diamonds. It's an anime-tinged version of the "Island of Misfit Toys" idea, and it works beautifully to reinforce the message Steven has been learning from his caretaker, Crystal Gems, throughout the show's run: that all lives are valuable.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what it means to make a sacrifice. Steven and Lars both make hard decisions in Wanted, and those decisions have real consequences. Why do they make those decisions? Do you think they made the right choice?

  • Steven and Lars meet the "Off Colors," a group of Gems who live in fear of being destroyed because they are different. What does this tell us about Steven's mother, Rose Quartz, and why she may have played a part in the rebellion?

  • How do Steven and the Gems display compassion? Why is this an important character strength

TV details

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