Post-Season One Character Analysis: Garnet
The strong, silent, mysterious, stoic type, Garnet hasn’t had that much in the way of character development this season – that is, not until the very end. Garnet isn’t a great conversationalist, but she has slowly started to open up, and to Steven in particular. She’s always the first to support Steven when the others (notably Pearl) think he’s out of his depth – “Monster Buddies” and “Marble Madness” immediately spring to mind, as well as Alone Together.
However, this lends its way to some situations where she has trouble saying “no,” which may present some problems later on. She can’t always give Steven everything he wants - he may be maturing, but he’s still just a kid.
“Garnet’s Universe” revealed that Garnet had never explicitly told Steven she loved him – something that’s, for the most part, been resolved as of “Jailbreak.” It’s clear Steven knows that Garnet loves him, but she hadn’t had the “strength” to tell him so herself, which is indicative of an issue Garnet tends to express – while she may be the literal embodiment of love, she has trouble expressing her feelings and engaging with her team and family, and rarely lowers her defenses. She far from excels in social situations.
She’s a “punch first, ask questions later” type. She solves her issues by taking action; “I thought violence would be the answer.” Luckily, Garnet believes in Steven, whose methods are the exact opposite - compassion, patience, and giving people a chance. Garnet’s already starting to refer to Steven on these matters more and more, but I suspect we’ll see his techniques rub off on her, too.
Garnet didn’t choose to be a leader - she had that responsibility thrust upon her when Rose decided to up and off herself. She wasn’t ready for this role, and that’s come across a few times. She’s starting to situate herself as the leader of the group, though - she’s becoming more diplomatic, delegating more to the others, and making quick, thoughtful decisions. I think Steven will end up taking over the role of leader, or perhaps they’ll decide to work more as a team without anyone necessarily in charge, but for now Garnet is doing a fantastic job with what’s she’s been given.
And of course, the big reveal: Garnet is a fusion, and not only that, but a fusion of love. And while I’d love to take a moment to analyse Ruby and Sapphire, anything I could say here I’ve already said before. Hopefully I’ll have more to go on for these two lovebirds by the end of season two!
I love the way that Garnet’s reveal was handled. We spent an entire season getting to know Garnet as her own character, her own person. Whether or not you picked up on the clues along the way, and whether or not you theorized that Garnet was a fusion, and whether she did end up being a fusion or not, Garnet was and is her own character. Ruby and Sapphire are not Garnet; Garnet is not Ruby and Sapphire; she is her own person.
It’s likely that Garnet decided to side with the Crystal Gems since it’s unlikely she would have been able to stay fused as Garnet back on Homeworld - according to several comments made by Jasper, it’s apparently frowned up and seen as deviant. The implications of this, along with the fact that Garnet clearly represents a gay relationship, has me very interested to see where this goes and how things are handled.
One thing that puzzles me is why exactly Garnet waited so long to come out to Steven about Ruby and Sapphire - after all, both she and Steven are, in essence, fusions of love.