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Recap / Steven Universe S3E10 "The New Lars"

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Steven, Sadie, and Lars are hanging out at the Big Donut. They're going to close up shop early the next day, and Sadie asks Lars if he wants to hang out and watch a movie at her house; Lars rudely declines her offer, however. Outside, Steven unabashedly asks Lars why he doesn't just admit that he loves Sadie; an angry Lars demands that Steven stays out of his business.

The next morning, Steven realizes he's woken up in Lars' body. He wears different clothes from the usual before going downstairs. His parents, who give their son everything he wants and seem to fear him, want to discuss his failing grades. "Lars" acts uncharacteristically nice to his parents and states he will do his best for such loving parents. Outside, Steven-as-Lars walks down the street, confuses Onion, and finds the Cool Kids, who are surprised by Lars' newfound niceness and ask him to join them in their dance competition. Steven, however, turns them down after remembering something more important: hanging out with Sadie.

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Sadie is at first annoyed by "Lars" showing up at her house despite rejecting her offer the previous day, but she still nervously invites him inside. In her room, "Lars" picks a sappy romance to watch, and he's in tears at the end. A confused Sadie asks why Lars acts like a jerk in public but is friendly when he's alone with her, and wants to know if he actually has feelings for her. When "Lars" dramatically declares his love for her, Sadie is shocked and takes it to mean that he's toying with her, kicking him out of his house.

Once outside the house, Steven apologizes to Sadie and admits that he woke up with his mind in Lars' body. Sadie believes this, since Lars would never apologize to her. The two realize that Lars could be in Steven's body, and they hurry to Steven's house. The Cool Kids and Lars' parents see them running through Beach City and follow them. They witness Steven and Sadie break into the house and "Lars" slapping Steven awake. Lars, once he gets his bearings, is angry at Steven for taking over his body and at everyone else for not caring that he was behaving oddly. When asked by his parents to calm down, he has a Freak Out!.

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The next day, at the Big Donut, Steven enters and apologizes to Lars and explains in more detail what he did. Lars is not surprised that Sadie would think he would try to hurt her feelings and has realized how mean he really is. When she enters, Lars greets her with his usual grumpiness but also amicably asks her if they want to watch a movie at his house. Iris Out on Steven, who is happy to see Lars and Sadie still get along.


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Tropes:

  • Absentee Actor: None of the other Crystal Gems appear in this episode, making it the fourth episode in a row without Garnet.
  • Acting Unnatural: Whether it's due to Steven thinking of Lars as nicer than he is sometimes, his natural kindness, his Shipper on Deck ideas with Lars and Sadie, or some combo thereof, Steven is way nicer than Lars in his body. Everyone else likes this better than his usual jerky self, though, with only Sadie reacting badly because she thinks he's leading her on. (Buck and Jenny seem to be pleasantly surprised that his Hidden Heart of Gold has suddenly become less hidden; Lars' parents, Martha and Dante, are overjoyed that he's apparently turned a new leaf.)
  • Aesop Amnesia: It seems as though Steven's forgotten from the events of "Love Letters" that he shouldn't be trying to butt into other people's relationships.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Played With; Sadie isn't that happy with regular Lars as he is because he is such a jerk, but Steven's behavior as Lars is so out of character that she thinks that Lars is leading her on and being a jerk as usual. Lars lampshades that it is something he would do.
  • Alternate Identity Amnesia: Lars doesn't remember anything from when Steven controlled his body. From his perspective, he stayed asleep the whole time.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Lars's parents don't register Steven's explanation that he was in Lars's body. The Cool Kids believe it, however.
  • Bait-and-Switch: During Lars' Freak Out!, he at one point takes a deep breath and appears to calm down, but then he just screams even louder.
  • Bad Powers, Good People: The ability to possess others is normally a villain power, but Steven is of course about as good and kind as one can be.
  • Book Dumb: Lars' report card is a string of F's, with a B and D thrown in.
  • Call-Back:
    • Steven assumes Lars would marry Sadie at some point, and assumed they were already married back in "Coach Steven".
    • Steven used his astral projection powers to possess the Steven Melons back in "Super Watermelon Island". Here, he finds it also works on humans.
    • Sadie figures out that Steven isn't really Lars when he apologizes for the trouble he's caused, because the real Lars would never apologize. It very much applies to "Joking Victim".
  • Caught with Your Pants Down: When Steven's mind enters Lars's body, he's sleeping naked with what appears to be a girly mag over his face.
  • City of Adventure: Lars lampshades how weird stuff is always happening in Beach City.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Although Lars is technically unconscious for most of the episode, we do see a lot of his daily life through Steven possessing him.
  • Eat the Camera: The camera zooms into Lars' mouth at the end of his Freak Out!.
  • Embarrassing First Name: Lars's mother calls him "Laramie", which is apparently his real first name, but takes it back when she remembers he doesn't like being called that.
  • Eye Pop: Steven's eyes bug out as he's intently listening to Sadie's and Lars' conversation.
    Sadie: Steven? You're kinda staring...
    Steven: No I'm not.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: Sadie asks Steven-in-Lars'-body if Lars was also controlling Steven's body, prompting them to run to the Temple ASAP when they realize he has no idea. The answer is no: just like with the Watermelon Stevens, the control is one-way, with Steven's body being dormant in the meantime.
  • Freak Out!: Lars goes ballistic when he realizes what Steven's been doing in his body.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus:
    • When Steven wakes up as Lars, there's a magazine on his face with a heavy-set woman in a one-piece bathing suit wearing cat ears on the cover.
    • The movies on Sadie's VHS rack: Hellhound ("He" is covered by a $1.00 tag, likely to appease the censors), It Came From Beneath the Sink, Creeptasm III, Dream Ghost, The Rotten Forgotten, Enjoy the Violence, Critter Crematorium, Slice Town, Exposed Brunch, Caligula the Documentary, First House on the Right, Evil Bear, The Organ Pickler Part VII, and Redrum.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Despite considering Lars their friend, the Cool Kids reveal they dislike his sour attitude and demeanor. When Steven inhabits his body, his cheerful attitude makes them like Lars better.
  • Go Through Me: Lars looks ready to pummel Steven for possessing him, and the Cool Kids all move in front of Steven to defend him.
  • Heroic BSoD: After regaining control of his body, Lars is left sullen at work the next day because everyone (as far as he knew) liked Steven in his body more than the real him. He seems equally disappointed in all of them for not caring that he was acting weird and himself for not being missed.
  • Hey, Wait!: There's a moment where Buck's seemingly figured out that something's up from Lars's unusual curiosity, only for him to say that maybe Lars is really a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
  • Hey, You!: Jenny apparently only knows Sadie as "Donut Girl".
  • In Another Man's Shoes: Played with. While Steven does get to spend a day in Lar's body, the same cannot be said for vice versa.
  • Irony: Steven's cheerfulness in Lars' body makes people like him better than the actual Lars, giving him the popularity he's always wanted.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Lars asks everyone who thought he was acting "weird" why they just accepted it.
  • Jerkass Realization: Everyone liking Lars more when Steven was in his body makes the real Lars realize how unpleasant he can be. He's especially hit by finding out that Sadie refused to believe Lars would sincerely tell her that he loved her, and assumed it was some sort of trick.
  • Karma Houdini: Downplayed; Due to everyone in Lars' life barring Sadie liking him more when Steven was acting as him, the latter is never called out or punished for possessing Lars' body in the first place. However, Lars is still righteously upset at Steven, who clearly realizes he's done something wrong.
  • Literal-Minded: When Sadie tells Steven as Lars that being with him triggers an emotional roller coaster, Steven says that roller coasters are fun.
  • Moment of Weakness: Following a number of episodes showing how much Steven has matured, this episode shows Steven still has some growing up to do. Steven intended, on realizing he'd accidentally possessed Lars, to be the best Lars he could, but he can't restrain himself from doing a little forced shipping between Lars and Sadie. He seems to realize when he returns to his body that he actually did something pretty awful, and acts appropriately chastened.
  • Naked People Are Funny: Steven wakes up in Lars' body, and immediately finds out Lars sleeps naked.
  • Noodle Incident: Seagulls somehow got stuck in the Big Donut's vents.
  • No Sympathy: Lars is rightly outraged when he finds that Steven took control of his body, even if it was completely unintentional on Steven's part. But because he's otherwise a total jerk, nobody save Sadie and Steven show him any sympathy.
  • Not What It Looks Like: Lars' parents are concerned when they see their son (actually Steven in Lars' body) break into Steven's house with Sadie, and even more so when they see him trying to slap Steven awake.
  • Oh, Crap!: Steven and Sadie freak out when they realize Lars might have control of Steven's body. Fortunately, he doesn't.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business:
    • Steven as Lars is so different that even Onion, the kid who just last episode was trying to burn down the Funland roller coaster, looks uncharacteristically perturbed and offers a wary thumbs-up when Steven greets him.
    • Lars's reaction when Steven reveals he told Sadie that he loved her pretty much puts to rest any doubts about his feelings towards her. He's never been that completely serious before in the show.
  • Out-of-Character Alert: Why does Sadie believe Steven when he tells her he's inhabiting Lars' body? Because Lars never apologizes.
  • Overly Long Scream: When Lars finds out Steven was in his body, he starts screaming and keeps it up so long he has to pause to take a breath.
  • Paranormal Romance: The movie that Steven-as-Lars chooses to watch is a sappy romance between two werewolves.
  • Pushover Parents: Lars' parents appear to be kind of scared of him, as they're not only stated to give in to a lot of his demands without question, but speak to him quite timidly.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • This episode shows that Lars' sour demeanor does make him unlikable to a fair amount. Even Sadie becomes exasperated with his attitude.
    • Steven tries to fix Lars and Sadie's relationship and it blows up in his face, because as a child he really doesn't understand the teenage mindset.
    • While it was totally accidental, Lars was not happy with Steven for possessing him and for the things he did while in his body.
  • Sequelitisinvoked: Implied with The Organ Pickler series. Sadie insists VII is the "good" one.
  • Shipper on Deck: Steven wants Sadie and Lars to get married and have a baby named after himself.
  • Slap Yourself Awake: Steven (in Lars' body) slaps his own body awake to get back into it.
  • Something Only They Would Say: Steven apologizing to Sadie in Lars' body convinces her he's telling the truth.
  • That Makes Me Feel Angry: Buck's reactions to "Lars".
    Buck: (encountering "Lars" for the first time): Buck is pleased.
    Buck: (after seeing "Lars" violently trying to wake Steven): Buck is no longer pleased.
  • Toilet Humor: When assessing whether sloths or koalas are better, Sadie says that "Sloths eat poop" (she's right, although koalas also eat poop).
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Sadie and the townspeople take the fact Steven possessed Lars surprisingly in stride.
  • Voices Are Not Mental: Steven speaks with Lars' voice while in his body.
  • Weirdness Magnet: When Sadie mentions offhand to the real Lars about how the day with Steven possessing him was weird, Lars mentions that weird things always happen in Beach City.
  • We Want Our Jerk Back: Sadie is the only one who doesn't like Lars better when Steven is possessing him; she thinks his taste in movies is boring, the change in attitude is weird, and that a sudden declaration of love is just a trick. That said, her immediate concern was more for Lars's safety than him changing.
  • Where Did We Go Wrong?: Lars' parents are dismayed but not surprised to find Lars apparently breaking in to someone's house.
    Lars' Mother: Our Lars, a burglar?
    Lars' Father: Now now, you know we've been ready for this day.
  • Wingding Eyes: Steven has stars in his eyes when he discovers he's taken over Lars' body.

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