text: “don’t forget, steven’s model can change based on the expressions and proportions of the board drawing!”
since there’s discourse surrounding how one boarder likes to chibify steven more than the others, i’d like to point out that this isn’t new. again, it’s fine to criticize it, i’m not saying that decision is always a winner, but it’s intentional.
i’ve seen too many hot takes on the show “slowly getting worse” for something that has always been the case. every boarder on the show has their own style, hence you get drawings that almost look like they’d fit in the OK KO verse:
(ian jq episode, season 1A)
and drawings that look very much like rebecca sugar’s distinctive style:
(rebecca sugar episode, season 4)
so i think it’s unfair to say season 1 was the “highlight” of steven universe’s artistry, or that it’s been a one-way slippery slope, if that’s how it’s measured.
again, if you don’t like free boarder expression, that’s okay. this isn’t about whether it’s good or bad. (though it’s not new: adventure time, disney cartoons, and warner brotherscartoons have all done the same thing).
this is just a nitpick that some of the criticism seems… a little tunnel-vision. almost like they’re trying to make a narrative of su getting worse, instead of accepting this has always been a part of the show (saving the ‘best’ animation for important moments) or something!
that’s why these scenes look so good. because they’re important. they change the game for the characters involved, and it’s crucial to visually convey the emotion and movement of it. su never “forgot” how to do that.