Cartoon Network’s Steven Universe features lesbian proposal

Cartoon Network show Steven Universe has featured a lesbian proposal.

The popular American animated cartoon series has repeatedly earned praise for its portrayal of queer characters, with gem characters Ruby and Sapphire portrayed as a couple.

The show’s groundbreaking depiction of a queer relationship in a cartoon has won praise from fans young and old alike – even as the show has faced repeated censorship around the world over its LGBTQ content.

Ruby and Sapphire (Cartoon Network)

Ruby and Sapphire took another major step last night in Season 5 episode “The Question”.

The show’s story arc had seen the pair – who often merge to form gemstone character Garnet – temporarily separated after a big argument.

But despite attempts to make the best of the break-up with a cowboy adventure, Ruby eventually confesses to Steven that she cannot imagine life without Sapphire.

She tells him: “I had a lot of fun today, but the whole time I kept thinking about how much more fun I’d have if I were with her. Sapphire was always there with me.

“I feel her smile just like it was mine. It’s so lonely now. I came here to be my own gem, but I’m still thinking about what she’d like all the time.

“If I’m making my own decisions, then I’ll decide I want to be with Sapphire.”

Ruby and Sapphire (Cartoon Network)

Ruby then returns to Sapphire and the pair emotionally reconcile.

The gem then asks: “Sapphire, will you marry me? This way we can be together even when we’re apart. This way, being Garnet will be our decision.”

Sapphire replies: “Of course.”

Ruby and Sapphire (Cartoon Network)

Ruby and Sapphire (Cartoon Network)

The pair then kiss.

The proposal set fans of the show alight online, with many praising the “amazing” moment.

Ruby and Sapphire (Cartoon Network)

The episode titles for the two remaining episodes of Season Five are “Made of Honor” and “Reunited” – suggesting the wedding will be central to the finale.

The show’s creator Rebecca Sugar previously explained the value of the on-screen visiblity.

She said: “You can’t wait until kids have grown up to let them know that queer people exist.

“There’s this idea that that is something that should only be discussed with adults — that is completely wrong. If you wait to tell queer youth that it matters how they feel or that they are even a person, then it’s going to be too late!”

Sugar pointed out that Disney films have featured romantic themes and heteronormative love from a young age.

She added: “I think a lot about fairy tales and Disney movies and the way that love is something that’s always discussed with children.

“You’re told that you should dream about love, about this fulfilling love that you’re going to have.

“The prince and Snow White aren’t someone’s parents, they’re someone you wanna be.

“You’re sort of dreaming about a future where you will find happiness. Why shouldn’t everyone that?

“I loved Disney movies when I was little, but I didn’t really feel like they were me, ever.”