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Recap / Steven Universe S1E17 "Lion 2: The Movie"

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Original airdate: April 23rd, 2014

Production code: 1020-017

The episode begins with the trailer for Dogcopter 3 in 3D, a movie about a dog who's a helicopter and a cop, and who fires missiles out of his butt. Connie and Steven are looking forward to seeing it, and show the Gems the trailer on Connie's phone. Amethyst teases the pair by turning into a duplicate of Dogcopter and tries to nick Steven and Connie's movie snacks (because Connie's parents don't allow her to eat food from the theater concessions). When Connie asks how they plan to get to the movie theater, Steven introduces her to his pet lion, Lion. Connie is amazed.

Steven commands Lion to take them to the movies. Lion takes off running with Steven and Connie on his back, but once Steven mentions Lion is not trained, nor is Steven himself; Lion turns toward the ocean. Lion can walk and run on water. His roar also opens magical portals; and having done this, he leaps through, coming to a stop in a brightly lit cavern.

Steven and Connie look around curiously and the place turns out to be a "magical Gem place". It is full of weapons and souvenirs. Connie puts Steven's hand on a pillar to activate the place, but once he touches it, they can't get him loose! It also has voice-activated training equipment which responds to Steven's voice. The pair have fun playing with the voice and gesture commands until Steven remarks, "I wanna see lots of explosions!" in reference to getting to the movie. In response to the perceived command, a drone appears. Steven takes Lion's relaxed stance as indication the drone is nothing to worry about until the training drone begins firing at them and chasing them.

When Steven calls him to help, Lion opens another portal back to Earth, in front of the movie theater. They have a moment to catch their breath, and treat their injuries. Steven feels bad for getting them into the situation, protesting that he messes up all the time and doesn't know why Connie hangs out with him. Connie says she doesn't understand why Steven, who obviously has a magical destiny, hangs out with her; she's no Dogcopter. Steven is about to try to explain, but the training device followed them back, still firing. Steven asks Lion for help. Lion produces a sword from his forehead for Steven to use. With Connie's help (courtesy of her tennis lessons), the two of them deflect the fire back on the device and destroy it.

Steven and Connie: Forehand! Backhand! Overhead death strike!

The trio then get to go into the movie and enjoy it. Connie comments that they took some liberties transcribing from the book.

The Iris Out focuses on Lion (who is also wearing 3D glasses, in a silent Homage to the famous MGM Studios lion.)

No, it's not a sequel to Lion.


  • Adaptation Expansion: In a horrible review of Dogcopter in the Character Blog Keep Beach City Weird, Ronaldo points out that it's completely unnecessary for the last Dogcopter book to be split into three movies.
  • Ask a Stupid Question...:
    Steven: Why don't you tell me you can do these things you do?!
    Lion: (says nothing because he can't speak)
  • Attack Reflector: The rose sword is able to reflect the Fire, Ice, Lightning projectiles of the robot, which Connie and Steven use to destroy it.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Steven mentions he isn't trained when on Lion's back, so Lion takes him to a training arena that seems to have been used by Rose Quartz. Then, while he and Connie are messing around with the arena, he says he wants to see explosions, generating a dangerous training robot that tries to kill them.
  • BFS: The rose sword Lion produces for Steven is technically about the right size for an adult, and probably quite small for its previous owner Rose, but for Steven and Connie it's so huge they need to hold it together.
  • Buffy Speak: Done by both Connie and Steven.
    Connie: I'm so much more... less interesting than you.

    Steven: Oh no! It's the robot shooty-thing!
  • Butt Cannon: Dogcopter shoots missiles from his butt.
  • Calling Your Attacks: Forehand! Backhand! Overhead death strike! The first two are just tennis moves. The third is one Connie made up because she wishes she could be cool and powerful.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Connie mentioning her tennis lessons comes up when needing to use a sword to destroy a dangerous training robot.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • There are several other copies of the laser light cannon from "Laser Light Cannon" in the cave.
    • The eponymous "Cheeseburger Backpack" is how Steven packed their movie snacks.
    • Steven once again conjures the bubble shield to protect Connie, as first seen in "Bubble Buddies".
    • Lion shows he can create portals. This effectively explains his apparent Offscreen Teleportation to Beach City in "Steven's Lion".
  • Cool Sword: Steven pulls a rose-themed saber from Lion's head that is implied to have belong to his mother.
  • Either "World Domination", or Something About Bananas: Steven attempts to translate some of Lion's snarls.
    Steven: I think Lion says we should hurry up and go. Or maybe he was just yawning.
  • The Film of the Book: In-universe, the Dogcopter films are based on a series of books.
  • Free Wheel: A burning tire rolls behind Connie and Steven as they purchase movie tickets.
  • Friendly Tickle Torture: While figuring out how to summon the weapons in the cave, Connie starts tickling Steven by poking him.
  • Funny Background Event: When Connie and Steven take out the Robot Shooty Thing with a series of tennis swings, you can see a sign for a shop called, appropriately enough, "Sports R' Cool" in the background.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Connie states that she doesn't feel 'interesting' enough to be part of Steven's life.
  • In a World…: Connie's description of Dogcopter.
    In a world where humanity is pushed to the brink, it turns out that the one who is most human... is a dog! Copter.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Amethyst doesn't get why Steven cares about a movie, saying "Who needs to go see movies when you've got magic!", contributing to making Connie feel like it and anything she could do with Steven would be a waste of his time.
  • Iris Out: Over Lion. Has some extra flair to it that makes it resemble the MGM logo. Which is somewhat ironic, considering Turner Broadcasting (and now WB) owns a huge chunk of MGM's library up to 1986, which is when Ted Turner owned it for 74 days, but kept the library when he sold it back to the previous owner.
  • Life-or-Limb Decision: When Steven's hand gets stuck to a pedestal in a gem temple lion brings him and Connie to, Connie considers that they might have to cut it off. The temple even helpfully produces an array of swords for the task. Steven quickly wills them away.
  • Loophole Abuse: Connie's parents forbade her from buying snacks at the theater, so she gets snacks from the Gems' house.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Lion shows he can Walk on Water, create portals with his roar, and keep a sword inside his mane, none of which Steven knows about until they need to come up.
    Steven: Why don't you tell me you can do these things you do?!
  • Previews Pulse: The Dogcopter 3 trailer uses the stock bass blare between cuts, and it seems to be used in the actual movie as well.
  • Proscenium Reveal: The episode cold opens on the Dogcopter 3 trailer and doesn't reveal Steven's watching it on Connie's phone until near the end.
  • Refreshingly Normal Life-Choice: Connie grows insecure when she experiences some of the exciting things Steven's life entails (a secret armory, a killer training-bot, a magical pet lion with a sword in its head), thinking that the things she's interested in (like going to the movies) are dull and unexceptional by comparison. Steven shoots this down immediately.
    Connie: I don't know why you hang out with me! I'm so much more... less interesting than you! And obviously you have some sort of magical destiny. Why would you even care about something like Dogcopter?
  • Shout-Out:
  • Super-Stoic Shopkeeper: The ticket saleslady at the movie theater freaks out and takes cover when the robot wildly shoots up the place, but as soon as the danger passes she sells Steven, Connie, and Lion tickets without comment.
  • Third Is 3D: Dogcopter 3: In 3D
  • Weapon Across the Shoulder: Connie holds Rose's sword this way after she and Steven defeat the monster.
  • You Didn't Ask: Parodied. Steven often berates Lion for not explaining his abilities forthright. Lion, being a lion, can't really do much explaining.