In this episode of Stars In Our Eyes, I look into a recent case of censorship made by Cartoon Network UK made upon Steven Universe Season 2 Episode 9, We Need To Talk.
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Thank you for joining me for this important episode of Stars In Our Eyes. Recently it was brought to the Steven Universe fandom’s attention that Cartoon Network UK had made several specific edits to Steven Universe Season 2 Episode 9, We Need To Talk before it broadcast in that region. Specifically, the song What Would I Do had several shots removed that higlighted more intimate movements between Pearl and Rose Quartz – and replaced them with recycled footage of Greg looking at the action while playing his guitar.
The purpose of this video is to highlight why this change was indeed censorship made by Cartoon Network UK and not small changes made for the purposes of localization.
Localization of content is the adaptation of media in small ways to make it feel as if it had been created specifically for a targeted region. By definition, these changes can not be made to dramatically alter the ideas, themes, and messages of its core content – unless legally required by the region in which it will be distributed.
In this case, Cartoon Network replied to the backlash it’s received for making these unwarranted alterations. Claiming that they do stand for equal representation of LGBT themes, they further clarified that these changes were made to protect small children from the ideas which they represent. This action in turn has only further stigmatized and othered these LGBT themes, and reinforced to sensitive minds that these themes are wrong, amoral, salacious, and unnatural.
This moralistic grandstanding made on behalf of Cartoon Network UK is not okay. And they need to know exactly why it is not okay. Normalization of these themes is accepted by the majority of society, and furthermore normalization of these themes is necessary. We need more equal representation in media crafted for all ages, and those in authority at Cartoon Network UK need to understand why they have overstepped their bounds, and repair and restore Steven Universe Season 2 Episode 9, We Need To Talk, for future broadcast and distribution.
I encourage you to sign the petition above, and let Cartoon Network UK know that their moralistic beliefs are antiquated and no longer reflective of the majority!