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♫ This ol' Ruby rider is Ruby ridin' alone. ♫


"The Question"[2] is the 21st episode of the fifth season of Steven Universe, the 149th episode overall, and the third episode in the seventh StevenBomb.

Official Synopsis

Steven shows some city slicker Gems how the cowboys lived.[3]


The Question (31).png

Amethyst and Steven arrive on the cliff where Ruby and Greg were eating pizza. Greg tells them that Ruby was telling him about Rose's real identity, and jokes that he, similarly, never told Rose that "Mr. Universe" used to be Gregory DeMayo. Steven asks Ruby how she is holding up, and Ruby assures him that she is fine, proceeding to offer him a slice of pizza. Steven is confused as to how she can be in such a good mood right now, and Ruby explains that she and Greg talked it out and that what Sapphire said was true. She claims that she can have a better life on her own, shocking Steven. He tries to change her mind, but Ruby still persists that she will be on her own.

The Question (79).png

Greg tells Steven that being separate from Sapphire might be what Ruby needs and that if Ruby and Sapphire being together is not what Ruby wants, then it is not what Garnet wants. Amethyst asks Ruby what she intends to do and Ruby says that she will live free, just like the protagonist in the dolphin comic she was holding. Steven picks up another comic about a cowboy, and Ruby, so dazzled by the idea (and perhaps by the appearance of the cowboy's partner "Sally Mae", which is similar to Sapphire's), changes her mind and decides to become a cowboy herself. Steven says to Greg that he will support her.

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Greg drives them to an outdoor area, and Ruby dresses like a cowboy. Steven remembers she needs a horse, and Amethyst shapeshifts into said being. Ruby rides Amethyst around the outdoor area when Steven remembers that they are missing a map. However, Ruby says that she does not need one. They come across a bush, and Ruby goes inside while remembering that she does not have Sapphire's future vision to warn of possible futures. She suddenly falls but luckily lands on a close rock sticking out of the wall of the cliff. Ruby hops back up, getting excited that she made a choice of her own. That night, the group goes to a camping area where Ruby plays guitar by the campfire. Greg is surprised because she picked it up in only ten minutes. The song Ruby sings is about her being happy with her new solitary life.

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When everyone is about to go to sleep, Steven tells Ruby that after seeing how much fun she was having, he now realizes he should not have tried to push her back into being Garnet. Ruby then states that the words she sang were not true, and that she did have fun, but that she would have had more fun if Sapphire were there with her. She gets frustrated over how she still thinks about Sapphire, and Steven tells her that she is still the same Ruby, even if she is thinking of someone. Steven points out that the cowboy in the comic misses someone too, even though he is on his own. Ruby decides to stay with Sapphire but expresses a wish for things to be different this time so they will not go back to being exactly the same as before. Steven shows Ruby a page in the comic that gives her an idea.

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Back at the temple, Pearl is comforting Sapphire when Steven comes in, saying that Ruby is outside. Sapphire rushes outside and finds Ruby on horse Amethyst. She apologizes for the horrible things she said, and Ruby says that Sapphire was right and that she will not believe they are really the answer until she hears it from Sapphire herself. Ruby gets off horse Amethyst, walks up to Sapphire, and proposes to her. Ruby tells her that they can be together even when they are apart and that being Garnet would be their own decision this time. Sapphire accepts, and they both hug and spin around, while Pearl, horse Amethyst, and Steven watch. Steven looks at the comic and it reveals a wedding page.






Instrumental Songs


  • This is the fifth episode of Steven Universe to air on the day of a national holiday — Independence Day (or more commonly known as "The 4th of July") —, with the first four being "Stuck Together", "The Trial", "Off Colors", and "Lars' Head" on Memorial Day in 2017.
    • Fittingly, Ruby tries to be an independent Gem in this episode, which aired on Independence Day.
  • The title of this episode is a parallel to the second season episode "The Answer", and also a reference to the old idiom of "pop the question",[5] which means to ask a person's hand in marriage.
    • When Ruby asked the question, Sapphire agreed in marrying Ruby and choosing to become Garnet; who, as told by Rose, was the answer.
  • A new version of the title card depicting the Crystal Temple's hand is shown for the first time since Season 4.
  • Ruby learning an instrument was a box on the official Cartoon Network bingo sheet for StevenBomb 7. So was Ruby moving in with Greg, which she is not mentioned to have done officially, but the two of them and Steven are at least shown living together for up to a few days in this episode.
  • This episode was based off a trip Rebecca took with her brother Steven Sugar for her 29th birthday to Joshua Tree, a national park located in Southern California, known for its desert landscapes.[6]
    • The scene where Ruby falls off the cliff was inspired when Rebecca drove her car into a ditch in the desert during this trip.[7]

Cultural References

  • The logo for the comic book "Dolphin Tail" is based on the logo for Disney's DuckTales.
  • "Lonesome Lasso" may be a parody of The Lone Ranger.Clarify


  • This episode begins immediately after "What's Your Problem?".
    • Sapphire, using her future vision, sees Ruby being, and questions why she would be, a cowboy. This episode shows her vision coming to pass.
  • Ruby mentioned the occurrence of the events of "The Answer".
    • The title of the episode itself parallels "The Answer".
  • This episode confirmed that Greg did not know about Rose's past identity as Pink Diamond.
  • Greg brings up his former last name, DeMayo, which was revealed in "Gem Harvest". He reveals that he never told Rose that DeMayo was his real last name.
  • Although wasn't very clear, there is a chance that when Ruby was stargazing alone, it could be a callback to Log Date 7 15 2 when Peridot told Garnet that she could stargaze alone.
  • Greg teaches Ruby how to play guitar in this episode using his musical knowledge previously shown in episodes like "Shirt Club".
    • Ruby is shown to be proficient at learning an instrument very quickly (after just "10 minutes"), similar to how Peridot learns the basics of music in mere minutes in "It Could've Been Great".


Ruby's uncolored gem

  • The Cartoon Network screen bug did not display the "new episode" banner when this episode first premiered.
  • When Ruby jumps up and landed on top of Greg's van's hood, her gem is missing its color in one frame.
  • When Ruby jumps up to the other side of the cliff, she's missing her gem.
  • When Ruby, Amethyst, Steven and Greg are fleeing for the cow, Ruby's gem is missing.
  • When Ruby makes a pistol with her hand, her gem is missing.


View the episode's transcript here.


Click to view the gallery for The Question.



ve Episode List
Pilot Pilot
Season 1 A: Gem GlowLaser Light CannonCheeseburger BackpackTogether BreakfastFryboCat FingersBubble BuddiesSerious StevenTiger MillionaireSteven's LionArcade ManiaGiant WomanSo Many BirthdaysLars and the Cool KidsOnion TradeSteven the Sword FighterLion 2: The MovieBeach PartyRose's RoomCoach StevenJoking VictimSteven and the StevensMonster BuddiesAn Indirect KissMirror Gem/Ocean Gem

B: House GuestSpace RaceSecret TeamIsland AdventureKeep Beach City WeirdFusion CuisineGarnet's UniverseWatermelon StevenLion 3: Straight to VideoWarp TourAlone TogetherThe TestFuture VisionOn the RunHorror ClubWinter ForecastMaximum CapacityMarble MadnessRose's ScabbardOpen BookShirt ClubStory for StevenThe MessagePolitical PowerThe Return/Jail Break

Season 2 Full DisclosureJoy RideSay UncleLove LettersReformedSworn to the SwordRising Tides, Crashing SkiesKeeping It TogetherWe Need to TalkChille TidCry for HelpKeystone MotelOnion FriendHistorical FrictionFriend ShipNightmare HospitalSadie's SongCatch and ReleaseWhen It RainsBack to the BarnToo FarThe AnswerSteven's BirthdayIt Could've Been Great/Message ReceivedLog Date 7 15 2
Season 3 Super Watermelon Island/Gem DrillSame Old WorldBarn MatesHit the DiamondSteven FloatsDrop Beat DadMr. GregToo Short to RideThe New LarsBeach City DriftRestaurant WarsKiki's Pizza Delivery ServiceMonster ReunionAlone at SeaGreg the BabysitterGem HuntCrack the WhipSteven vs. AmethystBismuthBetaEarthlingsBack to the MoonBubbled
Season 4 Kindergarten KidKnow Your FusionBuddy's BookMindful EducationFuture Boy ZoltronLast One Out of Beach CityOnion GangGem HarvestThree Gems and a BabySteven's DreamAdventures in Light DistortionGem HeistThe ZooThat Will Be AllThe New Crystal GemsStorm in the RoomRocknaldoTiger PhilanthropistRoom for RubyLion 4: Alternate EndingDoug OutThe Good LarsAre You My Dad?I Am My Mom
Season 5 Stuck TogetherThe TrialOff ColorsLars' HeadDewey WinsGemcationRaising the BarnBack to the KindergartenSadie KillerKevin PartyLars of the StarsJungle MoonYour Mother and MineThe Big ShowPool HoppingLetters to LarsCan't Go BackA Single Pale RoseNow We're Only Falling ApartWhat's Your Problem?The QuestionMade of HonorReunitedLegs From Here to HomeworldFamiliarTogether AloneEscapismChange Your Mind
Film Steven Universe: The Movie
Steven Universe Future Little HomeschoolGuidanceRose BudsVolleyballBluebirdA Very Special EpisodeSnow DayWhy So Blue?Little GraduationPrickly PairIn DreamsBismuth CasualTogether ForeverGrowing PainsMr. UniverseFragmentsHomeworld BoundEverything's FineI Am My MonsterThe Future
Shorts Lion Loves to Fit in a BoxThe Classroom Gems: What Are Gems?We Are the Crystal GemsThe Classroom Gems: How Are Gems Made?UnboxingThe Classroom Gems: FusionCooking with LionGem KaraokeSteven ReactsVideo ChatSteven's Song Time