Over the course of its first season, Steven Universe went from underdog to champ, getting demographic-spanning fans for its sincerity, humor, character development, world-building, and overall pleasantness. You sometimes forgot that the Crystal Gems are alien refugees on the run from an oppressive regime. That is, until the plot started picking up in the tail end of the season, culminating in the two parter season finale. In “The Return”, The Homeworld Gems finally arrive on Earth, including Peridot, a captive Lapis, and Jasper, a heavy-built soldier. When she sees that Steven has Rose’s gem, she promptly knocks him out and holds him captive, along with the other Gems, leading into “Jail Break”. Able to break out of his prison, Steven ends up saving two gems named (SPOILERS?) Ruby and Sapphire...who turn out to be Garnet, who was a fusion the whole time. Aside from that major revelation, “Jail Break” is just an awesome episode, especially Garnet’s triumphant song near the end. It speaks to Steven Universe’s strength that eligible episodes this year include “Alone Together”, “Rose’s Scabbard”, “We Need to Talk”, “Sworn to the Sword”, and “Too Far” (to say nothing of as-of-typing unaired episodes). “The Return/Jail Break” gets my vote for being a plot-heavy cap-off to the first season, yet still having all the intimacy that makes this show so great.