This is a mystery that was finally officially answered quite some time ago (a year ago exactly, allowing for it being a leap year this year) when Jailbreak aired. We met Ruby and Sapphire, then they fused together to form Garnet again. Though it’s obviously not timely, we’ve chosen it as our first Answer because it was the perfect mystery: so many hints were dropped over the course of the season, allowing large amounts of fans to be sure of Garnet’s fusion status well before the answer was ever given.
So what were these hints? There was one really, really big one: like Opal, who was the first fusion we saw, Garnet had two gems with different cuts but the same color. On the temple door, however, there were two gems with the same cuts as Garnet’s gems but with different colors. You could clearly see the details when she opened the door in Together Breakfast, so this piece of the puzzle was actually put in the show before we could even guess there might be a puzzle to solve (which Giant Woman took care of by introducing us to fusion).
This was enough to start fan speculation about Garnet’s status as a fusion almost immediately after Giant Woman aired. Not only did she have the two gems with the same color, and not only did the temple door imply that they should be different colors, but just like Opal, Garnet is a very strong Gem. Whenever there was a monster to fight Garnet was always the one doing the heavy lifting (she was even the only effective fighter in Arcade Mania), and Opal did the same thing: absolutely dominated a fight where Amethyst and Pearl were helpless.
There were, of course, a bunch of other smaller hints. They’re a bit subtle as foreshadowing, but they did create an intriguing web of coincidences that seemed quite unlikely were Garnet not actually a fusion:
- The series pilot opens with Garnet standing in between fire and water.
- Garnet uses a keytar (a “fusion” of a guitar and a keyboard) in Steven and the Stevens.
- When Alexandrite breaks apart in Fusion Cuisine, Garnet initially breaks into two pieces.
- Hopper and Hoppy are color-coded with pink (a shade of red) and blue outfits, just like the gems Garnet activated on the temple door.
- In Alone Together Garnet says that (unlike Amethyst and Pearl) fusion isn’t hard for her.
Heck, Garnet even gets two shooting stars in the sky at her point in the theme song! It’s like they were winking at us every time the show started.
Of course even with all of this there were plenty of people who didn’t believe Garnet was a fusion. The examples of Amethyst, Pearl, Rose Quartz, Lapis Lazuli, and Peridot seemed to indicate that a Gem’s gem should be placed on the line of vertical symmetry. While we would, much later when The Answer aired, find out that different Gems of the same type can have their gems placed different places, at the time it was a missing piece of information.
Still, as far as fan theories go, Garnet fusion theory was rock solid (no pun intended). There was some strong evidence in its favor, lots of narrative choices that only made sense if she was a fusion, and only minor stumbling blocks in its way. They won’t all be so straight-forward, so we should look back and appreciate what we once had.