This article contains information that is considered canon in the "Steven Universe" universe.
Son, there will come a time in your life when you learn to accept all pizza.
Greg seems to be an overall kind person living a simpler lifestyle. He is known to be friendly and genuine, and, so far, has retained an honest attitude concerning his feelings as an individual. He appears to be easy-going and an optimist; his catchphrase is "If every porkchop were perfect, we wouldn't have hot dogs".
He can be a bit immature at times, fooling around with watermelons in "Watermelon Steven", and is "kind of a mess" as described by Amethyst. He has been known to make poor choices, such as dropping out of college or faking an injury to spend time with Steven, but he always takes full responsibility for it afterwards and will do whatever he can to make it up.
While Greg is not necessarily knowledgeable about many of the situations he faces, he often tries to give the best advice he can based on his own experiences, which can have much value despite their simplicity and his down-to-earth view on things. Greg's advice has often proven invaluable to many people around him, like when he reminded Steven on when to bail out, which in turned saved his and Pearl's life in "Space Race".
Much like his son, Greg cares deeply for his loved ones and friends, such as when he went out of his way to get closer to Rose despite the boundaries between their species. He is similarly characterized as paranoid of the worst happening to Steven, which stresses him to no end. Despite this, he tries his best to put on a brave face for his son with the knowledge that it makes Steven happy and fulfilled, as seen in "Full Disclosure".
Even though he does not know what difference he can make, Greg will usually help those he cares about when in need, joining Steven on his mission in "Ocean Gem" and offering Connie support in "We Need to Talk". He is also not the one to bear deep-seated grudges; even though the majority of the Crystal Gems in part resented him for what happened to Rose, he still wished they could be friends again, such as in "Maximum Capacity" and "The Message". In "Story for Steven", he said Marty was "dead to him" but still admitted that he was partly thankful for the help making the choice to stay with Rose.
Greg is a sensitive person, according to Amethyst and a Crying Breakfast Friends! comparison made by Steven in "Reformed". Steven describes Pining Grapefruit as "wishing he was a better role model", something Greg shares with the Gems as none of them feel confident raising a child as unique as Steven. This leaves him with a minor lack in self-confidence as he has noted himself that he cannot offer very much. Nevertheless, he does not let it stop him from trying to prove he can be of use, as seen in "The Message", and does his best to be a responsible parent, taking parental initiative with Steven in "Space Race" to keep him safe.
He seems to be a little uncomfortable in dealing with Gem powers, which he refers to as "magic stuff". He chooses to avoid magical situations, unless Steven asks him for help. It is unknown if Greg has bad memories related to Gem powers, and if that is the cause for his reluctance to get involved with them.
Greg Universe was once a traveling musician who dropped out of college to become a one-man band known as "Mr. Universe", traveling around with his manager, Marty. When he played a concert in Beach City when he was only 22, the only person who came was Rose Quartz. Taking an interest in Rose, he soon met the Crystal Gems, before heading out on the road again. However, Greg could not forget Rose and as such chose to stay with her in Beach City to start a relationship with her. After a few months together, however, Pearl, who was jealous of their relationship, told Greg how he was "just a phase" to Rose, due to the differences between their species. After Greg attempted (in vain) to get closer to Rose by fusing with her, the married couple instead talked with each other about their feelings and grew closer than ever.
Rose eventually gave up her physical form to give birth to Steven. In Steven's younger years, Greg took care of raising Steven until he could move in with the Crystal Gems and learn to use his powers. Greg has since settled down in Beach City, where he lives in his van and owns a local car wash, supporting Steven with his income.
Greg appears as a plump man with a dark-beige beard surrounding his mouth. Greg has taupe hair styled in a mullet and dark-taupe eyes, with hair grown past his shoulders, and a large bald spot on the top of his head. He usually wears white tank tops, with long or short gray pants. He has a tan line on his shoulders and feet. (Possibly from a shirt and pants he wore before). Greg's skin color is a peachy red color, with the tan line spots being a light apricot color. He wears teal flip-flops, although he tends to go barefoot. In "Winter Forecast", he wears a purple dress shirt with pinkish plum spots over his tank, a blue baseball cap with a red underside, and brown footwear. When he was younger, he bore a striking resemblance to Steven, but had earring pieces, longer hair that flowed past his waist, a sleeveless black shirt with a star on it, and jeans with light blue sandals.
- "Laser Light Cannon" (debut)
- "Cat Fingers"
- "Coach Steven"
- "Ocean Gem"
- "House Guest"
- "Space Race"
- "Fusion Cuisine"
- "Winter Forecast"
- "Maximum Capacity"
- "Story For Steven"
- "The Message"
- "Bubble Buddies" (non-speaking cameo)
- "So Many Birthdays" (mentioned)
- "Onion Trade"
- "Rose's Room" (room's magic)
- "Steven and the Stevens"
- "Watermelon Steven"
- "Lion 3: Straight to Video" (on video tape)
- "Shirt Club"
- "Political Power"
- "The Return"
- "We Need to Talk"
- "Keystone Motel"
- "Steven's Birthday"
- "Full Disclosure"
- "Say Uncle" (mentioned)
- "Love Letters" (mentioned)
- "Chille Tid" (dream)
- "When It Rains" (mentioned)
- "Log Date 7 15 2"
- "We are the Crystal Gems"
- "Novelty Backpack" (mentioned)
- "Fusion" (on screen)
Greg is Steven's father. The two have a good father-son relationship, but Greg seems to be trying to make things up to Steven. This may be because he doesn't consider himself as living up to his potential as a parent. He also appears to know that Steven harbors emotional conflict concerning his mother. In the episode "Laser Light Cannon", when Rose's old light cannon that Greg supplies to Steven and the Crystal Gems doesn't work at first, he says, "It's okay, Steven! We'll figure out something else. Something even better!".
Even though Steven is his son and Greg was married to Rose, who also had the power of a typical Gem, he is still weirded out by the magic happenings that occur. However, even with his lack of understanding for these events, he always comes to his son's aid when he is needed (as seen when Steven turns into a cat monster in "Cat Fingers"). His willing to comfort Steven is the best of his abilities, as seen in "Keystone Motel", when Steven was upset that Garnet split.
Greg isn't the current guardian of Steven. While Steven lives with the members of the Crystal Gems, Greg lives in his van, which remains near the car wash. Steven used to live with Greg up until the Beach House was built. However, even though they don't live together, Steven seems to visit Greg on a regular basis (as seen in the episode "Cat Fingers" when Steven helps out at the car wash). Greg is shown to care about Steven's safety, as he is shown to sometimes worry that Gem stuff isn't safe for Steven.
The members of the Crystal Gems rarely interact with Greg, even though he is Steven's father and the lover of former Crystal Gem Rose Quartz. It appears that the main reason behind their lack of communication is because although the Gems don't have any negativity towards Greg himself, they still think he isn't the most composed person. Amethyst best sums up the Crystal Gems' general feelings on Greg when she describes him as "kind of a mess". Due to this fact, they advised Greg to stay out of "magical matters", as they were much more capable than him. Greg doesn't seem to mind, as he, like most humans, seems apprehensive, if not terrified, of "magic Gem stuff". However, even with their belief of Greg's somewhat questionable reliability, Greg has come to their aid when he is needed (as seen in "Laser Light Cannon"), but it seems that this only occurred at Steven's request.
Earlier on, both Greg and the Gems also seem uncomfortable around each other sometimes due to the circumstances surrounding Steven's birth, and consequently Rose's "death". In "The Message", it is revealed that Greg is deeply saddened and hurt by how the Gems seem to look down on him, assuming that he can't offer any real help with "magical matters". He expresses these feelings through a song about how all he wants is their approval and that he has a very high opinion of his wife's closest friends.
Recently, it seems that the Crystal Gems and Greg have warmed up to each other, especially Greg and Amethyst, although Greg and Garnet were never on bad terms either. His most complicated or potentially contemptuous relationship is with Pearl, although the two have never been seen acting outright hostile toward one another.
In an in-character interview with Newsarama, Greg notes that "the Gems didn't know much about raising a baby. That I get, I had that covered. But I don't know much about being a Gem". This is essentially the reason Steven was raised the way he was.
In "Steven's Birthday", it's revealed Greg first met the Gems when he was 22.
Let me tell you something, Mr. Universe. I think you can do it.
In "We Need to Talk", it is Garnet who encourages him not to give up on trying to learn how to perform a fusion dance in order to fuse with Rose. The episode strongly implies that she did so because she had seen, with her Future Vision, that, while he would never be able to fuse with her, the act of trying would force the two to have a "real talk".
This confrontation between him and Rose forced the two to talk about their relationship on more serious terms, and in the end they decided to try their best at making it work despite the difficulties of a human being involved with a Gem. In "The Message", Garnet is the one who convinces Pearl to give Greg a second chance at trying to decode the message, and she properly thanks him when he is successful, giving him their much desired approval.
In "Keystone Motel", Garnet accepts Greg's offer of going on a road trip. Greg is understanding of Garnet's split and lets Sapphire and Ruby have their space. He also is not alarmed when he sees Sapphire and asks where "the other one" is, meaning he might have known that Garnet is a fusion or had already seen Ruby and Sapphire in the past.
I had someone who was always there for me until she started hanging out with you!
|—Amethyst, in "Maximum Capacity"|
Amethyst and Greg used to get along very well. Amethyst's immature (by Gem standards) attitude, as well as her love for human activities such as eating and slacking off goes hand-in-hand with his personality. When the Crystal Gems first met Greg, young Amethyst was the least reserved and most curious about him, acting like an excited animal around him.
Their friendly relationship continued throughout the years and they spent a lot of time together doing things like watching marathons of their favorite TV sitcom, Li'l Butler. However, with Rose's passing came a change in their marriage; it is implied in "Maximum Capacity" that their relationship went sour because Amethyst started to hold a grudge against him for "taking" Rose away from her, leading to an unspecified confrontation and their calling their friendship off. The episode reveals that it involved shape-shifting, and that it caused Greg to be especially uncomfortable around shape-shifting in comparison to other "magical Gem stuff."
The episode leads to yet another argument as they are trying to rekindle their relationship, but this time it seems that the two, with Steven's help, reach an understanding, with Amethyst showing guilt for the things she had said and Greg reciprocating her sentiment kindly.
Rose may find you charming, but that's only because you're human. You're a novelty, at best.
|—Pearl, in "We Need to Talk"|
Greg and Pearl started out as rivals for Rose's love, and while it is unclear if Greg saw it this way, Pearl clearly had this mindset. Pearl, who had always loved Rose, was very antagonistic towards Greg and openly berated him for his seemingly naive attempts to romance her. Under the assumption that he was just a "phase" and that Rose would lose interest in him once his novelty as a human wore off, Pearl continued undermining Greg's self-confidence. Perhaps seeing him as an actual threat to her relationship with Rose, she was determined to convince him that he would never be intimately close to a Gem because of his inability to fuse, and henceforth had no chance with Rose. In "We Need to Talk", not only does she become significantly more haughty about this, she also convinces Rose to form Rainbow Quartz with her. While Rose believed it was purely to spruce up their music video, Pearl was actually making an attempt to drive her point home and demonstrate that she would always be Rose's closest confidante.
However, Greg is mostly just annoyed by her patronizing attitude and is relatively undeterred by her sandbagging. To Pearl's great irritation, her claims about his inability to fuse are actually what motivated him to attempt it. As it would seem, this ends up with him and Rose having an intimate talk about their marriage, a conversation that brings the two of them closer than ever before. Having witnessed the conversation, Pearl openly expresses her insecurity that Greg may have replaced her as Rose's "favorite" to the other Crystal Gems.
In the episodes set in present time, Pearl still retains at least some of her assumed superiority as a Gem and occasionally resentful towards him, although she conveys it to Steven as Greg not being an optimal role model rather than their personal history. Despite their past conflict, Greg still values the approval of Pearl and the other Crystal Gems and trusts them to raise his son well. As the show progresses, Pearl begins to forgive and respect Greg more and more as he continues to prove himself as a surprisingly adamant father. After the events of "Ocean Gem", she is seen voluntarily fixing his van on her own, and in "Reformed", the two are actually seen spending time together by choice while tinkering with the van. The two even agree that they are mutually mystified by the appeal of Crying Breakfast Friends. This apparent forgiveness doesn't seem to have flushed out all of her resentment however, as in "Chille Tid", she has a dream where she and Rose forget about Greg to go and explore the galaxy. This dream quickly warps into a nightmare where Greg is actually dressed as Rose and thanks her for "fixing [his] van", much to Pearl's horror.
I don't know what a magical lady like that ever saw in a plain old dope like me...
|—Greg, in "Laser Light Cannon"|
Rose Quartz was the romantic partner of Greg before she gave up her physical form to bring Steven into existence. Not much else is known about Rose's marriage with Greg, except for the fact that they met when she was the only attendee at one of Greg's concerts in Beach City, back when he was a one-man band. Greg seems to consider himself very lucky to have met Rose. Greg still doesn't know what it was that Rose saw in him.
We also see that, in the episode "We Need to Talk", his relationship with Rose started off a bit rocky, with both Rose and Greg not understanding the mannerisms of each other's species. The two, however, decide that they can and will work out their relationship, despite them differing in many ways.
Evidently, their marriage was a deep and loving one, as Rose and Greg decided to bring a child to the world together. In "A Guide to the Crystal Gems" Garnet calls Steven "a fusion of love, like me!" Finally granting Greg his wish of fusing with Rose, only in the human way.
Mr. & Dr. Maheswaran
The Maheswarans think I'm a responsible parent, and I got to maintain that image.
|—Greg, in "Winter Forecast"|
Greg desperately wants to come off as a good, responsible parent in the eyes of Connie's parents and makes every effort to earn their approval, with mixed results: in one possible future in "Winter Forecast" he walked the children home to Connie's through a blizzard because he thought that was what a responsible parent would do. This ended up only angering her parents as Connie caught a cold in the process. In another possible future in the same episode where he did manage to drive Connie home in time, her parents were very welcoming towards the Universes (even inviting them to stay the night to avoid driving home during the raging blizzard), indicating that, as long as he doesn't make a mess of things, they have warmed up towards him and Steven.
Greg has only briefly met Peridot in "Log Date 7 15 2". When they first meet, Peridot and Greg share an awkward moment before she rudely pushed him off the barn roof without warning, believing he can fly. Luckily, Garnet caught him before he could get injured. Greg seems to understand that Peridot doesn't know about Earth very well.
Yeah, he's just an old amigo from way back when.
|—Greg, in "Story for Steven"|
Marty was Greg's manager as the one-man band, "Mr. Universe." He was very exploitative of Greg, deciding every single move he made as a musician, and even taking 75 percent of his earnings. After telling Greg that he was just a "spaced-out kid" (and almost crashing his van), they had a falling out and Greg chose to stay married to Rose, presumably beginning his life in Beach City. While Greg bluntly states that Marty is "dead to him", he is thankful that he made it an easy choice to stay in Beach City, and, at the conclusion of his story to Steven, he realizes that he has Marty to thank for giving him the chance to even meet Rose, and puts the photo of himself and Marty up on a shelf in the van.
Oh, we both kind of hung around your dad, but Vidalia's cooler than your dad, so we started hanging out without him.
|—Amethyst, Onion Friend|
Vidalia, Greg and Amethyst used to hang out together when they were younger. While the two haven't actually been seen interacting, Vidalia says to Steven that his dad used to be "super hot", perhaps meaning that she had a crush on him.
- Greg appears to have some mechanical skills, as shown in "Space Race" where he built Steven a cart and assisted Pearl in building her rocket. Although, it should be noted that Pearl did most of the work.
- Greg is also shown to be an excellent sound engineer in the episode "The Message", where he manages to transfer the sound from the wailing stone into music and then a video.
- Despite his reluctance to become involved in Gem affairs, he still seems to know quite a lot about Gem history and their invasion on Earth. This is most likely due to his relation to Rose and his prior involvement with The Crystal Gems.
- Rebecca Sugar has stated that Greg was her favorite character.
- Greg Universe's catchphrase is "If every porkchop were perfect, we wouldn't have hot dogs."
- The catchphrase was said 3 1/2 times in "Laser Light Cannon". The last one (the 4th one) was said by Steven, but Greg cut him off when his van got carried away by the ocean tide.
- Pearl mentioned the catchphrase in "Ocean Gem" when Greg's van was destroyed, including the steering wheel that Pearl was holding.
- Judging from his catchphrase, as well as his picture with Rose Quartz, his favorite food is most likely hot dogs. According to Steven in the "Hot Dog Duffel Bag" short, Greg prefers his hot dogs with burnt crispy skins.
- This catchphrase was said by Steven again in "The Return" to activate the 4 Laser Light Cannons used to fire at the Gem Warship.
- It was revealed in "Coach Steven" that Greg used to work out before, but he's been putting it off for decades.
- It has been revealed in "Maximum Capacity" that Greg doesn't like shape shifting, although it was previously implied that he was uncomfortable with Amethyst's shape shifting in "Cat Fingers", based on his uncomfortable expression upon viewing it.
- It's implied heavily that the reason he doesn't like it is because Amethyst has used it to torment him in the past, as shown when she shifted into Rose in "Maximum Capacity".
- His voice actor, Tom Scharpling, also voices Yellowtail, Onion's Dad.
- According to an interview, favorite comic books include many kid-oriented titles published by Harvey Comics, such as Richie Rich and Casper the Friendly Ghost, which he has given to Steven, and the more adult-oriented SF comic Heavy Metal, which he says Steven will get when he's older.
- It is possible that "Greg" is short for "Gregory", as Amethyst calls him that in "The Message".
- It was revealed in "Story for Steven" that Greg dropped out of community college to pursue his music career, though he ended up failing after he decided to stay married to Rose.
- Greg is out of touch with pop culture, commenting in "Reformed" that he doesn't understand anything anymore when asked if he understood Crying Breakfast Friends!.
- In "Story for Steven", Marty refers to Greg as "Star Child". This may have been a reference to rock singer Paul Stanley, who is also often called the "Star Child".
- Greg and Vidalia are very similar. They both used to live exciting care-free lives and ultimately settled down and had a family.
- Greg has recorded at least two albums: Space Train to the Cosmos and Let Me Drive My Van (into Your Heart).
- As of "The Message", he is working on an another album, Water Witch.
- The title and cover art, as well as the only song confirmed to be in the album, are all based upon Lapis Lazuli.
- As of "The Message", he is working on an another album, Water Witch.
- In "Keystone Motel", he is not alarmed when he sees Sapphire and asks where "the other one" is, meaning he knew Garnet was a fusion.
- As none of the Gems make money, Greg is the one who pays for all their expenses.
- Greg did not know about the fusion Sugilite, until the episode "Coach Steven".
- It is likely that Greg is a fan of the seventies rock band Queen.
- In "The Message", Queen's 1977 album News of the World can be seen inside Greg's van.
- Also, in the SDCC 2015 extended intro, a poster of Queen's 1975 album A Night at the Opera can be seen at the back of Greg's van.
- It's unknown if Universe is his birth name or legally changed name, though the latter is more likely.
- Considering that last names like "Smiley", "Fryman" and "Pizza" are not treated as being uncommon, the former is not out of the question.
- Physically speaking, Greg bares a resemblance to cartoon icon Homer Simpson.
- While Greg's precise age is currently unknown, Joe Johnston confirmed that Greg is in his early 40 to mid 40s.
- In "Steven's Birthday", it was revealed that Greg was 22 years old when he first met the Gems.
& According to the episosde outline for Lion 3: Straight to video, Greg was thirtysomething in the old home video from Lion 3: Straight to Video.
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