Phew. Three episodes into the season and I’m not a happy camper. Not at all. there are some things going on that make me afraid that Ed&Adam will seriously mess up some things, if they don’t pull the emergency break now. But then, I guess I always knew why I only trust two/three showrunners… and why Ed&Adam, as awesome as OUAT is (I yet refuse to say “used to be”), are not among them.
* Once again, let’s start with the FTL part. At least that was a bit more interesting than the one last week; even though not particularly making much more sense. I mean, the whole Tinkerbell things is nice, but – why at this time, why with Regina? Why did she turn up? At first I thought Pan was behind it in some way, until I realized that this is Regina pre-Evil, and pre-widow. A Regina who is already Rumple’s student, but far from the person we know now.
This is also a pre-NL Tink, one who is no one else than one of the fairies, led by Blue. And isn’t Blue one nasty boss. I never liked her, but it gets gradually less the more often I see her. Luckily, that wasn’t much recently. In any way, Blue forbids further contact, further help for Regina, but Tink, of course, disobeys her – even steals pixie/fairie dust.
Which brings me back to the Why. Why does she do that? Where does her interest in Regina, and helping her, come from? The thing is, it doesn’t make any sense to me. Just because she’s good and her fairy-heart wants to help those in need? This is the only explanation I can think of, though still lame and vague reasoning – if it had been used. Instead, we never get any reason at all, just the fact, and its only purpose seems to be that in the end we have a bridge to NL and Regina and Tink meeting again while not being the best of friends.
In the end, Tink is ripped off her magic powers and left by the Blue Fairy because of her disobedience, and you really get the feeling that this all was only ever meant to lead to that moment, to give some explanation as to why she is basically a banished/”fallen” fairy. It could have had any other reason, really, but no, it was Regina, because then they can use that connection in NL. Well then.
* I’m not yet sure where they are planning to go with Regina’s love story. Is this some kind of foreboding for what’s to come a lot later in the show? Because obviously Robin Hood is meant to be her True Love, and the one she’ll once again be happy with. But I highly doubt that’s what she can be as long as there aren’t a few (an understatement, really) things taken care of. I mean, Regina’s happy ending – just as Rumple’s, for example – is something that should happen at the end of the show. I’m saying that because while I can accept hardships now, as soon as Regina and Robin (oh dear, another R…) are together, I don’t want them to have any other (big) problems. That would be getting old; it would be too much.
On the other hand there is this fact that Tink said by not following her fate to meet Robin and be with him she also destroyed his life, his happiness. It is true, to some extent, seeing that Marian died in the end, even though he still has his son (Roland? Seriously? I smell an R-fetish). So whatever happens when they meet, there might be some nasty hurdles to pass conquer at first, I guess. Because the moment Robin learns how exactly he is connected to Regina, I definitely see accusations and arguments coming.
Now we can discuss why Regina didn’t want to meet Robin. As I understood it, she thought that the, um, not so good looking fella at the table was her chosen one, and thus she backed off. She’s a beautiful young woman, probably still dreaming of her fairytale love – the one she had with Daniel. Of course the last thing she wants, especially as sophisticated as she is, is a drunk, unwashed and pouchy guy. But the guy didn’t know who she’d be; she could just have had a closer look, then turned and left again.
But she didn’t. She ran away without giving it any further chance. And that’s where one has to wonder if there is more to it. Regina is not the cold b* she sometimes appears to be, we know that quite well by now. She’s also not superficial; I think if she met someone who didn’t meet her standards when it comes to looks, she, under different circumstances, would still give him a chance and at least try and change him. Besides, such a guy would never be her True Love, but I guess here Tink would have been responsible for explaining it better. Anyways.
So what is it – Cora? Is she afraid that with a man who’s not suitable Cora will once again take her happiness form her? Is it in the end not the guy himself, but rather Regina’s consideration of whether Cora will approve? Aside from the fact that she must know Cora won’t approve anyways, what with being adulterous where she is now married to a king, the only thing Cora always wanted (and Regina has to want).
* Regina & Tinkerbell in Neverland is a surprise of sorts. Well, the part where she meets Tink, is abducted by her and then rips out her own heart. A heart that, by the way, is almost completely black. Ouch. I’ve never thought about that, but yes of course, this is what Regina’s heart has to look like. Will there ever be a cure for it I wonder?
But that’s not what I noticed as important. I mean, it’s not that much of a news, to be honest. More interesting is Regina’s effort to convince Tink to be good, do the right thing. Because it just doesn’t feel like something she says to save her own life, but something she really believes in; really wants. She wants Tink to be happy, to have a better life, and not a darkened heart. She wants her to pick hope over anger – contrary to what Regina herself did Because she knows the outcome. I think in that moment she truly cares.
Tink, nevertheless, never loses this angry attitude (I actually expect her to have some permanent growl going on every time I see her…). She did, however, lose her opposition to the group the moment she is offered a home. Only that for now I won’t count on Tink to need a home later on, because something tells me that if there is a sacrifice, it will be her. She has no connections to anyone around, and we’ll be needing some death for drama, so she makes for a good candidate. Not that I’d want her to die… well, let’s say, right now I don’t have much of an opinion when it comes to her in general. But it seems logical.
One thing I’d really like to know about, and it’s the nature of Hook’s and Tink’s relationship. They don’t seem to be enemies, at least not at first sight – Hook didn’t seem to be dishonest or teasing when he called her “Lady Bell” (which I thought was somehow cute – not a shippy sense, mind you, but still cute, a bit like a bigger brother) or when he said that they’ve been through so much together. I see it possible that at some point they helped each other, but as far as I know, that wouldn’t go with canon… well, we’ll see.
* Using magic is another theme that came up again – and I’m not talking about Tinkerbell. No, instead we see contemplations to magick into Pan’s camp, what of course wouldn’t work, as they figure out. Okay, understandable. But – why not magick themselves to a place close to it, and then walk the rest? I mean, what does this magic shield include? How far does it go? It’s not explained, it’s not even talked about. So they won’t try it because it could lead to serious injuries if there is indeed such a shield; but I can’t imagine Pan having the whole island under a spell that prevents magic. Wouldn’t make sense either, since he is not opposed to magic.
The other thing with magic that came up is Regina wanting to combine hers with Emma’s. And well, there’s an intriguing perspective. Recent spoilers say that Regina will indeed teach Emma magic, and this is going to be very interesting, because there’s so much conflict potential, that all that together will make for one hell of an explosive mixture – even more so if Emma continues to be defiant when it comes to magic. At least, however, Regina has by now understood that Emma’s magic could be of very good use, to either of them. It only needs to be utilized.
* When it comes to Henry, it really is getting more interesting. Interesting to see where this will yet go; how far into Pan’s control he’ll slip. He is on a good way, and how Pan is doing it is very, very clever. No matter what Pan is doing, it always seems to be win-win for him. And he apparently has a very good sense for how people’s minds work. Because the whole arrow-thing with Henry? I believe it went just as he had planned it.
He knew Henry would go for a chance to hurt his “enemy”; he’d recognize the opportunity. And indeed the boy did. That he knew what would happen, how Henry would react, showed when Pan caught the arrow. Now, of course he could be just good like that, able to react that fast, but I think it is more probable that he wanted that to happen.
Why? Well, Henry has made the conscious decision to hurt, if not kill someone. Gone is the innocence of a boy now; this is the first step into a darker side of his life, and towards Pan. Without realizing it, Henry is playing into Pan’s hands and giving himself up at the same time. This also means the longer he stays with the Lost Boys – and that’s probably why Pan is playing for time. He knows that the longer Henry is under his influence, the more he’ll take on the lifestyle and ideals of the Lost Boys.
What I don’t get is the whole Wilhelm Tell part. Shooting an apple from another one’s head? Why? And what was that indication that Tell and his son were in NL? To what use do they bring that into the story? At the moment, it is much more confusing than anything else. In some odd way it is an actual reenactment of what happened in Tell’s story, when he had another arrow ready to shoot the man who ordered him to shoot his son should he miss. Okay, so Henry would have known beforehand that he’ll never hit the apple, so he went for the kill – so to speak – right away. Still doesn’t make much sense, other than Henry trying to find a way to escape or cause damage, but he could have done that without the Tell reference.
And then there is this thing of Pan saying that Henry is the “true Savior” – the one to save magic in all the worlds. Okay, let’s take this fact (because I don’t want to start and wonder about that one now) as truth – it means that as long as Henry is with Pan, and as long as Pan has the opportunity to convince Henry to change to his side, he’ll have a chance to rule magic in all the worlds – and thus maybe the worlds itself. Is that his objective? The dark reign of all the worlds – and their children? We don’t yet know the meaning or origin of the shadows (well, we know how shadows come to exist, but not what they are exactly), or what it means to Pan. Does he really pursue world reign? And what for (other than the usual hunger for power)?
* The amount of comfort Emma and Hook radiate around each other is more than noticeable by now. I mean, even Regina sees it, and comments on it, which makes for cringe-worthy, but still amusing moment. Because I really wondered why she would call him Emma’s boyfriend.
Is it jealousy? I don’t think so. Not in a romantic sense at least. I can imagine though that Regina thought, after her conversation with him back on the Jolly Roger, the one that showed that those two are not that different (what with being villains who hope for a happy ending and all), she’s have a connection with Hook, but now she has to watch him hover over Emma all the time, and Emma for once doesn’t shoo him away, like she used to do before.
Quite the contrary – they walk together, they discuss the path, the journey, and a sensible continuation of the same. They act like adults, and I’m saying this because it’s not a naturalness for them. In fact, at the moment they seem to be the only ones who are capable of approaching the whole trip with logic and reason; the only ones who might find themselves successful, or make the group successful.
For Regina this is of course good when it comes to finding Henry; not for her lonely heart though. And here comes the second reason for possible jealousy; she yearns for such a relationship Emma and Hook show at the moment.
I particularly loved how those two sat next to each other at the fire, and he gave her the coconut (I think it was one?!) after boring a hole into it with his hook. She smiled and thanked him, and they both seemed so relaxed for the moment, as if this was the most natural thing in the world. I remember a time when she wouldn’t have easily accepted anything from him, but now there’s nothing about it.
In some way connected to all this is–
* Hook’s reaction to Charming‘s wound, addressing it – in private – and being sincerely sorry, as well as offering means/an idea to help at first surprised me a bit. But then I guess it didn’t really.
Hook has never been one or be openly hostile against everyone who crosses his way. I’ve said it before; he may be a pirate, but he sure can be called gentleman pirate. He has no reason to see Charming as an enemy, in any way. So why not be friendly? It’s not like they need to become best buddies, but they are both adult, so they can act like it as well. Here it is Hook who is much more adult when Charming at first is defiant and suspicious, instead of recognizing honest concern. Will Hook cry over his dead body? Well, most likely no. But that doesn’t mean he can’t at least try and help to prevent the dead body part.
Furthermore is Hook for now the most reasonable person on the journey. Technically he is the only one not personally involved. The only thing he could be seen as involved with are Emma’s feelings; Emma’s well-being. Without doubt he cares for her, and that includes also caring for those she loves, or at least are important to her (at the moment I don’t want to use the word love when it comes to her parents). The last thing she’d want for her is having to watch her father die, especially now, in this charged situation. Emma’s only so strong, and I tend to claim that if someone knows that, it’s Hook.
For now, however, Charming’s chances have further diminished, seeing that there is no pixie dust around. It will be interesting to see how far they’ll go with that, at which point the others learn, and what it does to Emma when she realizes that Hook knew but didn’t tell. But the more the poison spreads through his body, the harder it will get for him to continue on their journey, and then he’ll become a burden…
(And anyways, maybe Hook is only trying to get on the in-law’s good side ;))
* Well, Neal‘s now in Neverland, and we can wait when he finds the others. If he does at all, by himself, I mean. Of course the Lost Boys wouldn’t miss his arrival, and I don’t think he’s now in the best position. If they let him go, they’ll certainly take care of leading him away from the group, I think… because why would they be interested in him meeting up with Emma and the rest?
Unless, of course, Peter is as good as seeing the bigger picture – and the tension between Emma and Hook. Because then he could use that as a great distraction – Neal reappears just as Emma/Hook are about to get it on, get really close, and a conflict is born. That would have been the case anyways, but the more emotional baggage is there, the greater is the chance that the group loses focus, at least for a little while. And all Pan needs is time, really, to pull Henry in deeper – he’s already made him shoot an arrow, after all. It might take small steps, but if Pan wants to make Henry one of his Lost Boys, he could just be on the right way, using subtlety.
Another thing about Neal: Ruby slippers? So they’re still doing it, after all, still referencing to Oz. I guess that’ll be something they keep open as a future adventure for maybe next season. I’d definitely love to see it, as long as it isn’t as overdone as NL right now.
But that’s not what is important here; more interesting it would be to know how Neal’s able to list them of one item that could bring him to another world. Does that mean he’s been in Oz as well? Could Neal, after all, be the only one knowing all the realms? And how did he travel there? At the moment I’d think that Neal’s about to become one the biggest and most important (also most knowledgeable) characters. It would make sense, since he’s not only the son of Rumple, but also the father of Henry, who’s the son of the Savior. If someone is close connected to power in OUAT, it surely is Neal.
* So… Mulan. Um. Yeah. Really don’t know where to start. I mean – seriously? Gay (or bisexual, doesn’t matter at this point)?! Sorry, don’t buy it. At all.
First she pines for Phil. She’s all bitchy about Aurora being back and makes an impression of wanting to get rid of the competition asap. And now, all of a sudden, she’s in love with her? What the hell? Sorry, but long journey together to save/rescue Phil or not, that doesn’t usually lead to spontaneous love. Friendship, yes, fine, no problem there. Close friendship, sure, that too. But love?!
All this is to me is Ed&Adam not having the balls to continue defying all those crazy LGBT fans. Well, activists. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind gay characters, or relationships. I mean, I ship Johnlock, and I will definitely go down with that ship. But Mulan and Aurora is as inappropriate and illogical and completely wrong as is Regina and Emma.
Plus, it’s cliched as hell. First of all, as mentioned, was there never any indication that Mulan is, or could be, interested in women. I know, love doesn’t look for gender, but for a person, a soul mate, yadda, yadda. And yes, that’s true, I won’t deny it. Love is about the person, not about primary sex organs.
Homosexuality is great to bring into a TV show, especially because of its still complicated position in society. It’s always believable if it’s made good. This isn’t. This is like, we take the most masculine woman of the show – who, by incident, dressed as a guy anyways to disguise herself in a world where she’s not supposed to be (remember the Disney movie), and make her out of the blue fall in love with the girl she initially wanted to strangle.
If anything does this make Mulan a less likable character, because she’s obviously unable to decide what she wants. She should be strong and confident, and she is, in the end, in the Disney movie (that was even mentioned on the show, for God’s sake!). Sadly, this is exactly the one thing about Mulan, and the most important also, Ed&Adam have obviously forgotten.
Ultimately, this is outright stupid to me and if anything, it’s forced and only brought in to shut up the militants. And that NEVER is the right reason for any plot decisions. I’m afraid I don’t even have to hope that this will remain a loose end in the story; that this will never be wrapped up in favor of Mulan. After what they’ve said at NYCC, it looks a lot like there’s going to be some serious business, and really, this is after the whole LOST atmosphere of season three already the second thing that is putting me off.
 
Fun moments:
* Roast swan. “You’ll get that later.” — ’nuff said.
* “It’s a family thing.” – Oi, Henry, don’t get clever on us! 😀

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Tags: Blue Fairy, Emma Swan, Emma/Hook (CaptainSwan), Emma/Neal (Swanfire), Hook/Killian Jones, Lost Boys, Neal Cassidy/Baelfire, Neverland, Once Upon A Time, OUAT, Peter Pan
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