Once Upon A Time: Take 2 “The Thing You Love Most” Review

1 Nov

The Evil Queen

When I watched the Once Upon A Time episode at New York Comic Con a couple of weeks ago, I enjoyed it. It felt like a fairy tale episode of Lost. It might have had a few plot holes but I overlooked them since it was a fun premise and I enjoyed the bonding of Emma (Jennifer Morrison) and her estranged son, Henry (Jared S. Gilmore). I tuned in last night for episode 2 and honestly have to ask: what the hell happened here?

SPOILER ALERT… SORT OF

First of all the premise of the show is that the Evil Queen/Regina (Lana Parrilla) is so angry at Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) because of something she did in the past to ruin the love the Evil Queen had, that when Snow White marries Prince Charming (Josh Dallas) she puts a curse on fairy tale land so nobody will ever be happy and they will be ordinary and stuck in time. They won’t know who they are. The curse, we discover, originated with Rumpelstiltskin (Robert Carlyle). But here’s the big issue I am having with this episode: why isn’t Regina remembering the curse? She intimates that Rumplestiltskin won’t remember who he is once the curse takes effect and he defers a definitive response so we, like the Evil Queen, are led to believe that only she will know what’s going on in the land of Storybrooke.

We discover that Regina (the Evil Queen in current time) doesn’t seem to remember her agenda at all. She’s on autopilot. It is only Rumplestiltskin who actually controls the game. Now, what is the point of that? Yes he invented the curse but the Evil Queen enacted it. And if he is powerful enough to invent curses then why is he not powerful enough in fairy tale times to remain free instead of being a prisoner? Although I suppose the curse ensures his freedom and perhaps the entire show is REALLY about Rumplestiltskin manipulating everyone including the Evil Queen. That is the only way any of this will make sense to me. Otherwise, why have a lead character who doesn’t understand what she is doing. And how is any young kid, Henry in this case, smart enough to know without a doubt he is living in a cursed world of fairy tale characters?

Giancarlo Esposito as Sydney the Reporter

In this episode the only thing that saved me from tuning out completely was my old favorite Gus from Breaking Bad, Giancarlo Esposito, who is resurrected (since Gus met his magnificent end this season ) in Once Upon a Time as Sydney/The Magic Mirror and Pam from True Blood as the Evil Queen’s rival, Maleficent (Kristin Bauer) the equally Evil Queen from Snow White. Otherwise, I was sadly unimpressed. It seemed that all Regina could do was set Emma up to be arrested, something her own sheriff realized was an orchestration to harass and intimidate Emma. Then, not only does the Evil Queen kill her favorite horse to sacrifice his heart and fails at the curse, but then she goes ahead and kills the only thing she loves in the world, her father, who also appears to be her servant, which is enough to get the curse rolling. Then she… forgets. And while it was nice that Emma meets her mother and she wins Henry’s trust back, I don’t believe she’d be that stupid. The woman was a bounty hunter and the doctor set her up to be arrested. All the doctor says is Regina made him to it and she accepts that and tells Henry she’s on his side and they can start ‘operation COBRA’. That was all just a little too simple for me to believe.

I’m worried that things might just go downhill from here. I’m hoping I’m worrying for nothing because I still really like the idea of the show.

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