The same warning from our Lore Implications post for Warp Tour still applies: we really, really mean it this time when we say you should watch the episode before reading about it. It’s a really important episode, and you’ll be happy you waited.
Of course it’s been hard for us to contain our enthusiasm, so if you’ll excuse us we’re just going to geek out underneath the “Read the rest of this entry” button a little bit.
Who is Peridot?
Peridot is the first Gem we’ve seen from the homeworld. Lapis Lazuli had been trapped on Earth for thousands of years, away from everything that had been going on, while Peridot is fully up-to-date on everything. We didn’t see enough of her for her to really deliver heavy exposition, but she gave us some hints that might enlighten us about her and the state of the universe.
From Peridot’s actions it’s pretty clear that she’s some kind of maintenance worker. She makes a log entry indicating that her first goal on the planet is to find and reactivate something (it sounds like she was going to say “kindergarten” before she was distracted), and she’s in charge of the drones that were responsible for repairing the warp pad to the homeworld.
Peridot is likely working under orders rather than independently. Her bearing is very military, her outfit suggests a uniform, she’s wearing a symbol of affiliation, and we just don’t know enough about what Earth means to Gemkind to suggest anything that an individual Gem could hope to get on the planet for herself.
Additionally, the robonoids are very clearly blue while she is green. This obviously isn’t conclusive, but Gems seem to prefer that things they create be their color (Rose’s light cannon and sword being the two big examples).
More interesting is why she withdrew so quickly after coming to the conclusion that the Galaxy Warp might be compromised. The homeworld obviously doesn’t know the Crystal Gems are around, or Peridot likely would not have been sent alone. Still, they might have some inkling of potential danger. Perhaps they simply don’t take any chances with indigenous life forms, or maybe they know something happened on Earth to wipe Gems out. Either way, the fact that the Galaxy Warp became inactive again so shortly after her departure means next time the homeworld sends an expedition, they’ll be loaded for bear.
The wider universe
Peridot wears the rhombus clearly on her chest. We know the rhombus Gems were involved with Earth before: the shields left at the battlefield around the pyramid temple bear the rhombus insignia. In our speculation post for Fusion Cuisine we wondered if the Crystal Gems that make up Alexandrite used to fight for the rhombus Gems before meeting Rose Quartz.
Society seems to have moved on in the thousands of years since the isolation of the Crystal Gems on Earth. Pearl, clearly established as being the gearhead of the group, doesn’t recognize Peridot’s drones. This means that even if technology has long since reached its apex, the Gems are making things in new forms.
Of course Amethyst was surprised that Pearl didn’t recognize the drone. The Crystal Gems are not likely to be young: they have probably been around for at a bare minimum thousands of years before the Catastrophe, so should be at least somewhat familiar with the rate of change in Gem society. If the flask robonoids are new, and this is odd, something might have happened to shake up Gem society. The Cookie Cat theme song, and its interstellar war, come to mind again…
If there was a big shakeup though, that means that the Red Eye that attacked the Crystal Gems in Laser Light Cannon was antiquated technology (even Amethyst recognized it on sight) in a universe that has moved beyond old things (at least in form if not function). We still don’t know who sent it, but Peridot’s apparent ignorance of the Crystal Gems implies it wasn’t the Gem homeworld. Could it have been an attack sent long ago but which only recently reached Earth? Could the Gems have non-Gem enemies that have a score to settle with a team of intergalactic Gem warriors?