I'm not letting myself get caught up in another war.
Following the events of “Dewey Wins” and “Gemcation”, Steven is still eagerly waiting for Connie to respond to his several text messages. Steven tries to vent by playing his ukulele out on the beach, and just as he’s easing into a new song, his phone starts to vibrate. Praying that it’s Connie finally responding to him, it turns out to be Peridot requesting to video chat with him. He accepts and is greeted by Peridot, Lapis Lazuli, and Pumpkin, who point out that Steven hasn’t been communicating with them since his return from Homeworld. He tells them that Connie has not been responsive lately, which they’re not interested in at all and request to hear about his visit to Homeworld. So Steven explains how Beach City citizens were being abducted and how he had to turn himself in to protect them and how he was then put on trial before Blue and Yellow Diamond, and the second he does, Lapis starts wigging out and informs Peridot that they need to leave the Earth immediately, and abruptly hangs up on Steven.
Steven then rushes to the family Barn, where Peridot is struggling to reason with Lapis. Steven arrives just as Lapis plans for them to live in some remote place in the universe where the Diamonds will never find them. Steven lets them know that as far as the Diamonds know, he’s still on Homeworld evading their detection. As Peridot comforts her, Lapis grows persistent by explaining that Steven is too valuable and of their piling transgressions and states that the Diamonds are gonna take their anger out on the Earth just as they did thousands of years ago. Then she declares that she will not get caught in the middle of another war.
While devastated, Steven lets her know that he won’t stop them from leaving if they want to, but Peridot points out that if they take their Meep Morps from the Barn, they won’t be as special as they were previously. After an emotional outburst, Lapis uses her powers to drain the water from their smaller than average lake to lift the Barn all of its contents and is prepared to bring their lives with them and takeoff. Steven gets emotional when Lapis attempts to leave then and there, so after a tearful goodbye hug, Peridot notices that Pumpkin is MIA. Lapis puts the Barn down and they split up to find her.
Peridot and Steven search far and wide to locate Pumpkin, where he tells her how much he’ll miss them, and she reassures him that they’ll stay in contact with him through her tablet, the only problem is there’s no WiFi in space. As she explains that it’s for the best that they remain out of contact and how she wants to keep Lapis happy, they come across a vegetable stand selling onions, by none other than Onion.
Returning to the Barn, the two find Pumpkin hiding sadly in the crop field the entire time. Peridot tries to get her out so they can leave, only she doesn’t want to leave, and neither does Peridot. Steven insists that she talk this matter out with Lapis, but she states that she doesn’t have a choice. Just then Lapis returns and is glad to find Pumpkin safe and sound, now they can proceed with their departure from the planet.
Peridot then tells Lapis that Pumpkin doesn’t want to go, but Lapis claims that they know better and she doesn’t. So Peridot finally admits that she doesn’t want to go either, which surprises Lapis, and demands to know why she’s telling her this now but not earlier, and why she lied to her. Peridot states that she doesn't want to upset her and explains that if something happens on Earth, she wants to be there when it does, and that if the Diamonds do try to attack the Earth, that they should stay and fight to protect it, instead of running off with what they can carry on their backs, because she knows they’ll win together. And so as Peridot attempts to reason with Lapis one last time, she lets her know that Earth is their home now, extends her hand to her, and asks "Isn’t it worth fighting for?"
In spite of this tender moment, her past trauma of 5000 years of imprisonment during the Gem War makes Lapis reject it, so once again, using her powers, she raises the Barn and takes flight. Lapis then takes one final look at the Earth and Peridot, Pumpkin and Steven, and as she fights back the tears in her eyes, she flies off with the Barn into space, presumably leaving Earth forever. Emotionally shattered, the three then return to Steven’s house, where Steven allows Peridot to take refuge in his bathroom once again, only this time with Pumpkin, for as long as they need. After Steven checks his phone one last time for any responses from Connie, the episode ends with Peridot asking Steven what they are going to do now with the response of silence.
- Steven Universe
- Lapis Lazuli
- Connie Maheswaran (pictured; mentioned)
- Yellow Diamond (mentioned)
- Blue Diamond (mentioned)
- The Cluster (mentioned)
- Jasper (mentioned)
- Gem Homeworld (mentioned)
- The Barn
- Beach House
- This episode's title may be a play on the phrase "raising the bar" or having a more literal meaning, as in the episode, Lapis raises the barn out of the ground to transport it into space. It may also be a play on the phrase "barn raising," which is a collective action of a community, in which a barn for one of the members is built or rebuilt by community members.
- This episode marks the second time Lapis leaves the Earth.
- The title card of this episode, as well as the one from "Gemcation", use the credits font for the name of the episode. However, it changes back to the regular font in "Back to the Kindergarten".
- The episode’s title is a play on words of the expression "raising the bar", primarily due to Lapis' overwhelming fear for what's to come from Homeworld, and the term "barn raising" as a double entendre.
- Steven is still awaiting a response from Connie since the events of "Dewey Wins".
- Peridot seems to know how to video chat, as seen in the short, "Video Chat". Lapis also seems to have gotten used to the idea and doesn't think he's trapped in the tablet like before.
- Onion wears Steven's straw hat from "Watermelon Steven". He even comments on it, revealing that it is, in fact, the same hat.
- Peridot cries out "Oh no! Our smaller than average lake!". This can be considered a reference to Barn Mates, where Peridot says "H2Oh my gosh. It's a smaller than average lake!"
- At the start of the episode, Steven leans on the hand that was destroyed by the Centipeetle in "Gem Glow".
- When Lapis looks back down at Steven and Peridot, the white reflections on her wings disappear for a brief moment just before she flies away.
View the episode's transcript here.