Lapis Lazuli, Malachite, and Unhealthy Relationships (2016-07-30)

(spoilers for Steven Universe episode, Alone at Sea)

The thing about Alone at Sea and the “big reveal” about Lapis and Jasper’s relationship (via the fusion Malachite) is that it does portray a different type of emotional abuse that people aren’t used to seeing on media and thus don’t know how to understand it.

I know there’s a lot of backlash for this episode. People saying that Jasper is the victim and therefore Lapis has nothing to ‘complain’ about, people saying that Rebecca Sugar is a terrible person for writing their relationship this way.

I’ll be honest, when I first thought about Malachite as an unhealthy relationship, I did think it was the more ‘traditional’ version of abuse I’ve seen before–with Jasper as controlling and violent and Lapis being trapped and forced to endure. This is what their relationship was before they were fused–with Lapis literally as Jasper’s prisoner–and so I assumed that this dynamic continued into their fusion.

Which, as stated in the episode, is clearly not the case.

But that doesn’t make their Malachite relationship less abusive. And while it may seem that the direction of abuse has changed, that doesn’t mean that this isn’t still a vastly unhealthy relationship for both Lapis and Jasper. Lapis isn’t less of a victim in their relationship than she was before the fusion.

Because here’s the thing: yes, Lapis was controlling and hurtful–these are canon by admission–but just because Jasper was the target of this, just because Jasper has become a victim as well, does not mean Lapis is any less. In unhealthy relationships it’s not always one victim and one abuser–things aren’t as straightforward as all that, it’s not just a one way street.

Both (assuming non-poly relationships for the sake of this post) participants in a relationship can be horrible to each other, can be hurtful and mean and abusive to each other. It doesn’t invalidate one’s abuse towards the other.

As Malachite–a fusion which Lapis entered under duress/dubious consent, I’ll remind you–Jasper and Lapis spent the entire time at the bottom of the ocean, fighting each other for control. Lapis won most of the time but that doesn’t mean she has all the power in this relationship.

Consider dating an addict; one whose addiction is dangerous not only to themselves but to others around them. So as this addict’s significant other, either you’re an enabler or you’re trying to stop them. You cut off access to their addiction. You invade their privacy to make sure they’re not hiding stashes from you, keep track of where or when they are to make sure there aren’t opportunities for them to indulge, prevent them from talking to others who you know also partake in the addiction even if those are ‘friends’.

It’s not a healthy relationship even though you’re trying to get your partner clean. But it’s also not solely your fault. True, you could break up with them, but couldn’t they also break up with you? You’re with them for a reason, even if the addiction has become the prevalent, unhealthy part. You love them, not their addiction, and maybe that’s what makes you stay. Maybe they even play on that to make sure you stay. You are as trapped in this relationship as your partner even though it does look like you’re the one with all the power.

It doesn’t have to be romantic relationships.

And, sure, in the case of Jasper and Lapis that addiction is more like “destroying Earth” but the point still stands. This is an unhealthy relationship that Lapis has been trapped in, and even if its not, from the outset, the same tableau of abuse we’ve seen in the media over and over again, it doesn’t make it any less valid.

tl;dr: Abuse and unhealthy relationships aren’t just one abuser and one victim. Jasper being a victim doesn’t invalidate Lapis as a victim, either.

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/200803636/stream?client_id=N2eHz8D7GtXSl6fTtcGHdSJiS74xqOUI?plead=please-dont-download-this-or-our-lawyers-wont-let-us-host-audio

kitasmeow:

Made by andwereallwevegot and mashup’d by jacksgreysays

I posted this on my previous blog but that blog was deleted soo..

Someone with actual musical talent got a hold of my mashup’d version of The Ballad of Lapis Lazuli and made it so much better.

It’s like seeing a random sketch you made be turned into a movie. Except… with music. 

This is so lovely! You have a wonderful voice, kitasmeow.

(Ooh, and here are the ukulele chords for it)

Hey I was wondering about the lapiz lazuli song, did you make chords to that song or did you just make up the unbolded words?

For the Lapis Lazuli song I tried to stay as close to the canon Lapis Lazuli/Water Witch song in the episode The Message… I guess the wiki link on the post leads to a deleted page, now, but basically I just modified the canon lyrics and mashed it up with andwereallwevegot’s Ballad lyrics.

As for the melody, that too I tried to keep as close to the canon Lapis Lazuli/Water Witch song that Steven sings here.

Essentially, I own absolutely nothing in that post except for my voice.


https://jacksgreysays.tumblr.com/post/114823347784/audio_player_iframe/jacksgreysays/tumblr_nlwtr61s801u7pteb?audio_file=https%3A%2F%2Fa.tumblr.com%2Ftumblr_nlwtr61s801u7ptebo1.mp3

The Ballad of Lapis Lazuli

[lyrics by andwereallwevegot in this post and some modified from these lyrics in the episode The Message. Just to be clear, andwereallwevegot’s lyrics are bolded, the altered canon lyrics are italicized.]

Her name was Lapis Lazuli
She was trapped in a mirror
a prisoner long forgotten
and it couldn’t be clearer
Her name was Lapis Lazuli
She came from far away
She never really liked it here
She didn’t want to stay

Lapis Lazuli, you fled into the bottom of the sea
Lapis Lazuli, you were so mad, but then you came around to me

Her name was Lapis Lazuli
She gave us quite a scare
One morning when we went outside
the ocean wasn’t there
Her name was Lapis Lazuli
It wasn’t an attack
She took off for the world she knew
and gave the water back

Lapis Lazuli, you flew away to outer space
Lapis Lazuli, we were friends but you still wanted to leave this place

Her name was Lapis Lazuli
She sent us back a call
An urgent warning from the stars
That darkness soon would fall
Her name was Lapis Lazuli
She sounded so alone
The Home that she had found at last
was not the home she’d known

Lapis Lazuli, they thought you were a criminal
Lapis Lazuli, I know your friendship comes through subliminal

Her name was Lapis Lazuli
She wanted to be free
She’d felt so trapped so very long
by us and them and me
Her name was Lapis Lazuli
I wish it wasn’t so
She took her captor in her arms
and dragged them both below

Lapis Lazuli, you chained yourself to the bottom of the sea
Lapis Lazuli, I know you can’t, but I wish you’d come back to me

Her name was Lapis Lazuli
I knew her for a while
I might not see her anymore
[But] I’m glad I saw her smile

~

A/N: Throwing my hat into the ring! I love how many different versions there are (which you can find here). I also tried to incorporate the melody Steven sings in The Message.

Please excuse my pitchy-ness in some parts… and the parts where I forgot how many syllables I had left in each line. Also, I realize I should have made that last note fall not rise since it was the ending. Ooooh well. I hope you enjoy 😀

edit: mp3 can be downloaded here (mediafire)