ONCE UPON A TIME Captain Hook Was the Voice of Reason

Episode 612 “Murder Most Foul”
Written by Jane Espenson & Jerome Schwartz
Directed by Morgan Beggs

I really enjoyed this episode’s transformations, role reversal, and characteristic twist ending.

Okay, this whole Snow/David (Gennifer Goodwin/Josh Dallas) Ladyhawke subplot needs to come to an end. It was great for a while. It’s overstayed its usefulness. Somehow, the curse needs to be lifted. Leaving video messages for each other before trading consciousness, although romantic in the way that they do anything to make it work, has become tiresome. It’s past time to move on.

With that out of the way, the rest of the episode was pretty good. We got an excellent dramatic performance from Josh Dallas and a nice twist ending. With the Gideon plot somewhat sidestepped for this week, it made the two other story lines more presentable.

This is the second consecutive episode featuring August/Pinocchio (Eion Bailey). The circumstances are completely different in both. It almost feels like he was either being shoehorned in, or they’re setting him up for a major role in the last part of the season. I really hope it’s the latter. They’ve forced characters into stories rather oddly too many times over the course of the series. With the current story line getting ready to wrap up at the end of the season, I hope there are actually plans for Archie (Raphael Sbarge) and August, who have been appearing a bit more.

When William Tell doesn’t have an apple to shoot at, he’ll shoot at sleeves. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

I’m intrigued at where they are going with the Robin Hood (Sean Maguire) subplot. At first it seemed a cheap way to reintroduce a dead character. But the idea that it’s clearly not the Robin they know makes for an interesting potential wild card. Taking a magic box from Regina’s (Lana Parilla) vault only deepens the mystery surrounding the new version. The previous incarnation of Robin of Locksley was a bit of a whiner. This one seems dangerous. And much more interesting. Especially when he’s trying to kill Keith (Wil Traval), aka the Sheriff of Nottingham.

Redemption arcs seem to work well on Once Upon A Time. The flashback to David’s father is no exception. Having been told that his father, Robert (David Cubitt), died a worthless drunk, seeing the opposite was quite refreshing. Being forced to sell one of his twin sons to Rumpelstiltskin (Robert Carlyle) to become a son of and heir to the king in order to pay for medicine to save the other, Robert seemed like a coward. But when he risked his life to save his former son, turned prince, from Paradise Island and pleading with King George (Alan Dale) to allow him to take his son back showed heroism. And he gained sobriety in the process. Ordering Robert’s execution only made the king/Albert appear all that much worse.

A son and imaginary father bonding moment. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

But the highlight of the episode was David’s complete meltdown. Upon finding out about his father’s bravery and King George ordering his death because of it, he went to confront Albert at the mental hospital for a duel to the death. The fight was interesting to watch. The thing that got me though was that it was a knife fight, but wasn’t choreographed as a knife fight. It was more like a sword fight with baby swords. Killian (Colin O’Donoghue) broke up the fight and talked David down. The pirate had truly changed his ways. For David to have gone overboard and Killian to be the voice of reason was an interesting and refreshing change of pace. The hallucinations that David experienced of his father were a bit odd though.

Of course, there was that ending. King George’s men didn’t kill Robert. Pirates, led by Captain Hook, intercepted them. Killian killed Robert and then made it look like a drunken accident. So what happens when the word gets out what really happened? Killian just got David’s blessing to ask Emma to marry him. This could be … well, awkward.

I’m looking forward to seeing how Pinocchio plays into the final episodes. Please tell me he wasn’t just pointlessly shoehorned in. And please bring an end to that infernal sleeping spell! It worked for a while, but it’s run its course and now it needs to stop.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.

ONCE UPON A TIME Emma Changed Her Fate … Or Did She?

Episode 611 “Tougher Than The Rest”
Written by Adam Horowitz & Edward Kitsis
Directed by Billy Gierhart

This week’s episode is inspired by a twisted version of a classic tale. But at least in this case, they admit it’s a twisted version. And it was done to great effect. The tale was The Ugly Duckling by Hans Christian Anderson.

As a young girl living under a bridge having run away from a group home, Emma was met by an older boy as she was ripping pages out of a storybook and using them for kindling. He stopped her just before she burned the aforementioned tale, explaining that the “ugly duckling” believed in itself so much that it changed its fate and became a swan. Young Emma tried correcting him that it was always a swan. But the lad, who we would later find out was a young Pinocchio, said it wasn’t how it was told to him. Thus, not only did it inspire young Emma to adopt the last name “Swan”, it also set up the overarching theme for the episode.

In Wish World, Emma and Regina blew any chance of using the portal to get back when they were held up by Robin Hood. I love the fact that it only stretched this particular subplot for one episode. Historically, such things would last so long, it would rival the milking of subplots on Dragonball Z. But this season, they’ve been much better about moving things along.

A former puppet making puppets. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Emma got the idea to seek out Pinocchio in Wish World to build a wardrobe (like Geppetto did for baby Emma) that would send them back to Storybrooke, since he dismantled the original years ago. Regina ditched them to go looking for Robin Hood.

Except that Robin Hood was actually Robin of Locksley and he stole from the rich and … kept it. Hopefully this reintroduction will be a less whiny version than the last one. After all, his version of Marian died before they could marry.

The two got captured by the Sheriff of Nottingham before being “freed” by Rumpelstiltskin. Then as revenge on the Wish World Evil Queen for locking Belle away and starving her to death, he decided to take it out on Regina. He threw her and Robin in a prison … from which Robin could escape.

Emma and Pinocchio found an enchanted tree which he could carve a wardrobe from. He had a magic chisel handed down from Geppetto since non-magical items couldn’t affect magic wood. But in an encounter with an old, drunk Captain Hook with a big gut, the chisel was broken. Eventually, Emma convinced Pinocchio that if he truly believed, he could be the woodcarver his father was and wouldn’t need an enchanted chisel. It worked.

When the cabinet was completed, Emma and Regina took Robin along through the wardrobe and into Storybrooke. They reappeared coming out of exploding trees, presumably acquired from Michael Bay. And Emma went to face her fate.

Why does Gideon dress like he’s heading to the Jedi Temple to kill younglings? (ABC/Jack Rowand)

While that was happening, Gideon had appeared in Storybrooke as the guy in the hooded robe from Emma’s vision. He had been raised, and harshly treated by the Black Fairy in another realm, for 28 years. What is the deal with 28? Emma was 28 when she found out she was the Savior and broke the spell everyone was under. Now Gideon was 28 and wanted to kill Emma.

And why? He wanted to stop the Black Fairy and needed to become the Savior to do so. After all, asking for the Savior’s help wasn’t sufficient enough. He has to kill the Savior in order to take her power, since in the end, there can be only o– … Sorry, wrong franchise.

There was a sword battle between Emma and Gideon. And she got the best of him! And the sword was shattered! She changed her fate!

But wait … she was wearing different clothes in the vision, meaning that it wasn’t the vision. And Gideon promised he would still kill her before he disappeared. And Mr. Gold warned Belle that war was coming to Storybrooke. And it ended with a vandalizing Gideon, inside the clock tower, smashing out the face of the clock. Jeez, how many times are they going to have to fix that thing? And there are still too many episodes yet. So the fate could still be coming.

So a big thank you to the writing staff for not lingering on the Wish World story line any further than this episode. And please don’t make this Robin as whiny as the previous one. While I’m not the most thrilled with the whole “I knew all along” trope that Pinocchio expressed, I’m still thrilled to see where the rest of the season leads. Fate or no fate?


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.

The AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Get Their Man… or Do They? — LEVEL ELEVENTY-SEVEN #108

Episode 415 “The Man Behind the Shield”
Written by Matt Owens
Directed by Wendy Stanzler

It’s a game of cat-and-mouse on this week’s explosive episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but who’s the cat and who’s the mouse?

Coulson (Clark Gregg) and his team are aggressively searching for May (Ming-Na Wen) and Mace (Jason O’Mara), and in their hunt they come across pieces of Coulson’s past, where he and May visited Russia to retrieve a 084 for S.H.I.E.L.D. This is before May started seeing Andrew, and it serves to set up the antipathy felt by Ivanov (Zach McGowan), but more to set up another piece of the #Philinda Experience we’re about to get.

While it’s a perfectly straightforward episode, it has its moments of expectation-twisting, especially with an ending that could or could not actually be what it looks like…

The panel: Maia Ades, Mindy Inlow, Dan Handley, Jason Hunt





AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Falls Down and Goes Boom — LEVEL ELEVENTY-SEVEN #107

Episode 414 “Boom”
Written by Nora Zuckerman & Lilla Zuckerman
Directed by Billy Gierhart

It’s an explosive episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but mainly only because we have Terrence Shockley (John Pyper-Ferguson) finding out things about himself he knew not until now. And it’s not something he likes about himself, and the Superior (Zach McGowan) isn’t too happy about it, either, especially after there’s an… incident, shall we say? … at the office of Senator Nadeer (Parminder Nagra). It ends up being Daisy (Chloe Bennet) vs. Shockley as she tries to counter his skills and … abilities, shall we say?

Meanwhile, Coulson (Clark Gregg) and Mack (Henry Simmons) continue their search for May (Ming-Na Wen), and that leads them to Agnes (Mallory Jansen), a flesh-and-blood Aussie who happens to have worked with Radcliffe (John Hannah) and is completely freaked by the idea that he went ahead with his experiments in robotics — only we’re back to Radcliffe claiming to work with the long-standing goal of making it possible for Agnes to live forever. Because she’s got an inoperable brain tumor. But Radcliffe’s mention of the Mainframe also tips Coulson to the fact that May’s alive.

The panel: Maia Ades, Mindy Inlow, Kammie Settle, Dan Handley, Timothy Harvey, Jason Hunt





Getting Time Loopy: The Groundhog Day Effect

[Featured image by freeimageslive.co.uk – fmant0]

There’s an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation called “Cause and Effect” (episode 518). In it, while exploring an uncharted area of space, the Enterprise and its crew came upon a “temporal flux distortion” out of which came the USS Bozeman. It struck one of the Enterprise‘s warp engines causing a repeating time loop in which Bill Murray woke up in Punxsutawney, reliving the same February 2nd over and over.

Or something like that.

In celebration of the day that we worship a fortune-telling rodent that consistently predicts the weather incorrectly, we’ll take a look at the scientific phenomenon featured in the film most associated with the day, the appropriately named Groundhog Day. But in doing so, we also need to look at another aspect to the same temporal loop phenomenon depicted in that film. Whereas Groundhog Day is about a person living a fairly linear life in a universe caught in a time loop, we should also look at a local time loop while the universe continues a linear existence. That occurs in the aforementioned “Cause and Effect”.

Enter The Wormhole

First of all, we need to look at what would create the physical property of a time loop. The best (and possibly only) candidate would be the wormhole.

Wormholes are common staples in science-fiction. One could even call it a bit of a trope. But are the depictions even accurate? The simple answer is that nobody knows. In fact, wormholes themselves are, at this point, only theoretical and possibly just a mathematical curiosity. However, scientists generally believe that the figures must be accurate and they must be real.

Wormhole art by David Baker/SciFi4Me

Wormholes are, in theory, shortcut passageways between two points in time and/or space. Based on the curved space-time of relativity, they are tunnels at the shortest distance between points on a curve. Imagine having to get to the other side of a mountain. The only two ways to get to the other side are to go over or around it. Oh, wait. Someone kindly cut a hole through the center complete with paved road. How nice. That’s essentially what a wormhole is like in curved space-time.

However, they’re very small. I mean really small. I don’t think you quite grasp the level of attoscopic diminutiveness that describes wormholes. They’re tiny, is what I’m trying to say. They exist on a quantum scale. And they don’t typically last very long. The theory is that if enough energy is exerted on a wormhole, it can be enlarged and held for a longer period of time, such as long enough for a ship or person to travel through.

It probably doesn’t look like this. (STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE/Paramount Television)


And what would one look like? Although most movies and television shows depict wormholes as sparkly vortexes, the truth is that no one has the slightest clue. Perhaps they don’t even all look the same. Some might look like black holes. Some might look like something from a video game portal gun.

They probably don’t look like this, either. (STARGATE/Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer)

They could also be invisible!

That’s The Spirit!

Then there is the issue of memory. How can we explain the fact that the meteorologist named Phil Connors (played by Murray) could relive the day over and over remembering what happened before without ever aging? How can the Enterprise crew experience déjà vu? If there was a full time reset, wouldn’t their memories also reset? And if not, shouldn’t they be aging each time? This is the point where we have to step slightly aside from hard science and start guessing.

Although I and most others, including scientists in all fields, believe in the existence of a non-corporeal self, called a spirit or soul, others don’t, including scientists in all fields. The reason for that is that there is not enough hard scientific proof that it exists.

But we need for people to go back in time with a reset body, including synapses in the brain needed for memory, and still remember what is going on. For that, we have to simply assume the non-corporeal self exists, and that is what gets sucked into a wormhole and dropped into the past. (Though admittedly, it doesn’t really explain an android like Lt. Commander Data. So we’ll just take some artistic liberty on this.)

Breaking The Loop

Now it’s time to figure out how to break the time loop.

For the Enterprise, the solution is easy. Data sends a message back to his earlier self that said the course of action being ordered won’t work. So he opts to carry out the other option and saves everyone. There is no explosion, and the energy needed to open up that wormhole is never exerted. (Apparently doing BOTH courses of action for greater effect was somehow unreasonable to them. But let’s not split hairs.)

And we’re pretty sure they don’t look like this. (GROUNDHOG DAY/Columbia Pictures)

The strange case of Phil Connors is a different story altogether. There seems to already be an invisible wormhole there connecting one point in time with another in the past. It was apparently placed there by the Universe in some form. (Some might say it was chance. Some might say that it was God. But the credits indicate that it was Danny Rubin and Harold Ramis.)

The only real solution in this case is to cause the events in the time line to deviate enough to avoid the wormhole. But no matter what changed in the events throughout the story, it just kept resetting. Then after about forty years (according to one interview with the late Mr. Ramis), he finally managed to change events in such a way as to dodge the wormhole and keep his spiritual essence from being ripped out of him and shot back into the past.

Yes, it took Mr. Connors forty years to get over himself.


So there you have it, the Groundhog Day Effect. You can now rest knowing that the phenomenon has an explanation.

By the way, this is the 2,437th time you’ve read this article.

Sweet dreams.


The AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Have Two-Faced Issues All Around – LEVEL ELEVENTY-SEVEN #104

Episode 411 “The Patriot”
Written by James C. Oliver & Sharla Oliver
Directed by Kevin Tancharoen

Early in the season, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. gave us a new origin for Jeffrey Mace (Jason O’Mara), one that wasn’t consistent with his comic book roots. Now an Inhuman, The Patriot was a slightly new take on the character. Except now we find out that’s not the case! And what’s in the case! And why is Burrows (Patrick Cavanaugh) suddenly the most important man in the room?

Turns out, General Talbott (Adrian Pasdar) has concocted a little secret, and it’s now up to Coulson (Clark Gregg) and the gang to figure out how to save the cheerleader director and prevent the outing of a secret that could destroy S.H.I.E.L.D. all over again!

Melodramatic enough, Poppins?

Meanwhile, more anxiety for Radcliffe (John Hannah) and Aida (Mallory Jansen) as the LMD of Agent May (Ming-Na Wen) now has a mission but no direct control from either of them. What if she figures out what she is?


The panel: Maia Ades, Mindy Inlow, Sam Sentman, Dan Handley, Timothy Harvey, Jason Hunt







Three weeks after its debut in theaters, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is still going strong at the box office. Quickly surpassing Captain America: Civil War, it gained the number two spot for 2016. Critical acclaim, positive word-of-mouth, and even a controversy or two concerning the resurrection of certain characters — all worked to make Rogue One a hot property.

The gang gathers around the table to talk about favorite moments, some quibbles, and speculations about what happens next, especially in the wake of Carrie Fisher’s untimely death.


The panel: Mackenna Riley, Mindy Inlow, Jennifer Wise, Thomas Townley, Jay McDowell, Jeff Hackworth, Sam Sentman, Dan Handley



Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME Aladdin Became A Weapon


Episode 610 “Wish You Were Here”
Written by Adam Horowitz & Edward Kitsis
Directed by Ron Underwood

In this episode, there was a genie, an abduction, and an alternate universe. Overall, this was a good episode and a good winter finale. But there are a couple of things that annoyed me.



The first is that the tactic of using genie wishes on others to circumvent the magic backlash (always a price to pay) was picked up on so quickly and often without any setup. Dramatically, someone should have gotten burned for everyone to have learned the lesson. Instead, everyone knew the issue right off the bat.

The other issue is the main topic of the season (Emma’s vision) keeps getting upstaged and buried by the subplots. In previous seasons, subplots either supported the overall arc or at least worked alongside without drowning it out. Not this time. Luckily, this episode redeemed that.

Now that we’ve gotten the things that annoy me out of the way, let’s get to the rest of it.


Emma and Regina found the Evil Queen kneeling by Robin Hood’s grave, infuriating Regina. Emma took the vision sword out and cut EQ on the cheek. The injury wasn’t echoed on Regina’s cheek. The sword can harm one without affecting the other.

So EQ summoned Aladdin, now a genie, to grant Emma her wish to never have been the Savior. And Emma was transported away to an alternate realm. Later, Regina tracked down the EQ. Knowing that they were the same person, and that wished couldn’t be undone, made the wish to Aladdin to transport her to the same place he sent Emma. And she disappeared.

David confronted the EQ and got her into a fight, just long enough to grab the lamp. He wished to Aladdin that she be given exactly what she deserves. Nothing seemed to happen. So he gave the lamp to Jasmine so that she could wish them to Agrabah, which she did. She and Aladdin disappeared.


Mr. Gold wasn’t able to locate his son. As a sign of good faith, he released the bonds he put on Belle, and the two agreed to work together to find him. At the convent, they found the Mother Superior in bad shape. She revealed that their son had been taken by the Black Fairy.

EQ saw a flash of light inside Granny’s and the hooded figure from Emma’s vision came out. The hooded person turned EQ into a snake, giving her what she deserved. He went to Gold’s shop and revealed himself to Gold and Belle. He was their son, Gideon, all grown up.


Off in Wishworld, Emma was a princess in the Enchanted Forest with an elderly King Charming and Queen Snow White. She had no knowledge of Storybrooke. And Regina showing up frightened everyone since they had apparently long since defeated their version of the Evil Queen. So with the help of that world’s Rumpelstiltskin, she needed to pretend to be the Evil Queen again in order to jog her memory about being the Savior. And in exchange for his help providing a magic bean that would allow them back into the real world, he would get his freedom.


At Henry’s knighting ceremony, Regina showed up and kidnapped David and Snow. Emma showed up at the Evil Queen’s castle where Regina had the two. But instead of standing up and fighting Regina, Emma offered her the key to the kingdom and surrendered. Then Henry showed up to try to be the bold and daring knight. He was eager to kill Regina. Apparently, his behaving like Emma never wanted him to was enough to jog her memory and she realized it wasn’t real.


By the river, they activated the magic bean which opened up a portal. But then Wishworld’s Robin Hood showed up, distracting Regina. And they missed their chance to return.


So unlike other seasons, the winter finale wasn’t the end of one story and the start of a new one. Instead, it’s a cliffhanger that is meant to hold us over for three months until the remaining five (yes, FIVE!) episodes left on this season’s calendar. And March can’t get here soon enough.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.


Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME People Were Running Off With Babies


Episode 609 “Changelings”
Written by David H. Goodman & Brian Ridings
Directed by Mairzee Almas

In this episode, there was a manual, squid ink, and a new Genie!


In flashback, Belle (Emilie de Ravin) found Rumpelstiltskin (Robert Carlyle) with a baby he took from a couple who turned out to be Jack (Nick Hunnings) and Jill (Tammy Gillis), presumably prior to Jack breaking his crown. The baby was going to be used to summon the Black Fairy (Jaime Murray), who was known to take children. He used squid ink to freeze her, and he began questioning her about taking babies. And we found out that Rumple is the son of the Black Fairy. And his father was Peter Pan. No wonder he’s so screwed up. The Blue Fairy (Keegan Connor Tracy) recruited Belle to return the child, which she did.

In Storybrooke, Gold captured one of the nuns (Jacky Lai) and had her tied up. She wasn’t tied up very tightly. I’m just going to pretend that she couldn’t get out of the very loose rope because of the magical enchantment. There. Plot hole filled. And I let out a sigh of relief. You’re welcome, show creators.

The Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla) showed up and witnessed the “message” Gold was sending to the others. Using a magic powder, he caused her to age and become extremely old (Edwina Shuster). And he reminded her that she was supposed to kill Zelena (Rebecca Mader) on his behalf.

It's time for more threats. (ABC/Jack Rowand) EMILIE DE RAVIN
It’s time for more threats. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Belle was in the library where she discovered a manual on how to defeat the Dark One. She opened it up, and it said to follow the red thread. She looked up and found a glowing red thread that led her into a dream state, one where the glow wasn’t radioactivity. She found her unborn son (Giles Matthey) grown up (Morpheus) who explained that the thread was what Gold wanted to cut with the magic shears. Then she woke up from the dream, laying on the book.

It turns out the book was written in squid ink. This gave the idea for Hook (Colin O’Donoghue) to go to Gold’s shop and provoke him. That provided the distraction for Emma (Jennifer Morrison) to use squid ink on Gold to freeze him. As they searched the shop, Emma had more visions (surprise, surprise) that stopped the search and allowed Gold to get away with the aging powder. Those visions seem to come in the nick of time to stop our intrepid heroes from getting things done. It has me wanting an end to the story line since they’re too convenient.

At Granny’s Diner, Belle started having contractions and realized the tea she was drinking was tainted with the aging powder. And her son appeared to her in a dreamlike vision saying that she knew what to do. She gave birth, named him Gideon, and handed him off to the Blue Fairy to take him away to keep him safe. I guess naming him Morpheus would have made it too obvious to Gold.

"Premature" delivery on an epic level. (ABC/Jack Rowand) EMILIE DE RAVIN, COLIN O'DONOGHUE, JENNIFER MORRISON
“Premature” delivery on an epic level. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

It turns out that the Evil Queen was the one who put the spiked Belle’s tea. Emma went to Gold’s shop, found the sword she saw herself being killed with in her vision and took it. Regina (also Lana Parrilla) threatened to crush her won heart in order to kill the EQ. And when Jasmine (Karen David) summoned the Genie for help in finding Agrobah, all that came out were a couple of gold bracelets proving the Genie had been freed. So Aladdin (Deniz Akdeniz) put them on to become the Genie.

So he has been the Savior, and is now the Genie. Now I want to see Aladdin become the Dark One so he can claim the Once Upon A Time super power trifecta.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.


Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME Mirrors Did More Than Reflect


Episode 608 “I’ll Be Your Mirror”
Written by Jerome Schwartz and Leah Fong
Directed by Jennifer Lynch

In this episode, there were a wand, a dragon, and a whole lot of mirrors. It’s unusual to see an episode that didn’t have even a single flashback. And it’s a good thing too. An occasional break from time jumps is refreshing.


Snow (Gennifer Goodwin) and David (Josh Dallas) seem to be doing fairly well with their Ladyhawke-like situation. They started tag-teaming their lives and time with the baby. It showed the depth of their commitment with one cooking for the other before tagging off, and leaving video messages for each other. And it’s started to take its toll. Snow, though, figured out that the Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla) was watching them through a mirror on the wall.

Partners in deception. (ABC/Jack Rowand) OLIVIA STEELE FALCONER, JARED S. GILMORE
Partners in deception. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Regina (also Lana Parrilla) got the idea to trap the EQ in the mirror world. She enchanted a mirror to capture the villain. Henry (Jared S. Gilmore) was used as bait to attract her to the beach. Then when Henry disappeared and Regina and Emma (Jennifer Morrison) tried using the mirror, it didn’t work. EQ switched the mirrors and trapped them instead. She then took the place of Regina and convinced the others that Emma had gone to New York to seek out the Dragon. Meanwhile, the two were in a mirror world where they could do nothing more than look at the real world through people’s mirrors.

It didn’t take long for Henry to catch on. As much as I criticize their use (or lack thereof) of Henry, he showed his capability in this one. I still wish they had made him drunk with power as the Author, but they never seem to want to make him a villain. However, if they can keep him clever and relevant, I’ll accept that. He saw through EQ’s disguise and, with Violet’s (Olivia Steele Falconer) help, got to the vault to try to find a way out for Regina and Emma.

Aladdin, the world's best burglar? (ABC/Jack Rowand) DENIZ AKDENIZ
Aladdin, the world’s best burglar? (ABC/Jack Rowand)

In the Mirror Universe, Regina and Emma found the Dragon (Tzi Ma), who, had been sent there by the Evil Queen. He found a back door out, but it was a broken mirror which had to be re-assembled. While they were working on it, EQ, with the Dragon’s heart, commanded him to turn into a full dragon and attack them. Regina tried to tempt Henry with power from a magical hammer she acquired from Mr. Gold (Robert Carlyle). When he refused, she got mad and threw the hammer which broke the mirror and freed Regina and Emma.

Not trusting Gold, Belle (Emilie de Ravin) decided to skip town. She employed the help of Zelena (Rebecca Mader) to do it. They got Aladdin (Deniz Akdeniz) to break in to the pawn shop and steal the magic wand she would need to escape. He barely escaped being caught, but saw Gold spinning straw into gold on a spinning wheel. He also got the wand. Gold ended up taking the wand back from Zelena and putting a gold bracelet that he was weaving on Belle; this would allow him to track her wherever she went. But he wasn’t able to harm Zelena. So EQ and Rumple decided to work together to get revenge, Rumple wanting the EQ to get Zelena for him.

Never trust Rumpelstiltskin when he's doing arts and crafts. (ABC/Jack Rowand) ROBERT CARLYLE
Never trust Rumpelstiltskin when he’s doing arts and crafts. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Another good episode. I like the fact that they’re continuing to move through subplots quickly and not stretching them out. Unfortunately, the main plot about the Savior once again has taken a back seat, just getting a couple of small mentions.. Hopefully they’ll get back to having it back in the forefront soon.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.


Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME There Was A Spell With A Twist


Episode 607 ” Heartless”
Written by Jane Espenson
Directed by Ralph Hemecker

In this episode, there was a portable dungeon, flying hatchets, and a potion from the Underworld.


I’m still wondering how much more of our characters’ histories they can tell before it’s overkill. Still, it’s good to see that they’re moving through the subplots quickly and not stretching them out.

In flashback, the Huntsman/Woodcutter (Paul Johansson) was a bad guy. He disguised himself as a peddler to drug David (Josh Dallas) and use his dog to track Snow White (Gennifer Goodwin) for the Evil Queen. Inside the wagon he was using were chains and shackles. Snow, not yet a bandit, was trying to get money to pay for a ride on a ship to get away. David was going to the same destination, but to sell the family farm that they couldn’t afford to maintain.

Woodcutter or bug-eyed barbarian cosplay? (ABC/Jack Rowand) PAUL JOHANSSON
Woodcutter or bug-eyed barbarian cosplay? (ABC/Jack Rowand)

When the Woodcutter captured Snow in his porta-dungeon, David showed up, they fought, and the Woodcutter punched a hole in the box containing Snow. She was able to grab his arm and allow David to kill him. Snow gave David what little money she had collected so far. Their hands touched and caused a “spark of true love” that gave birth to a sapling at David’s feet. And they never saw each other.

So the two of them met well before they actually met. Got it. It’s one of those “destiny” things. Although they did a good job of hiding their identities from each other, it’s still a bit awkwardly shoehorned in. The destiny story arcs have been used so often elsewhere. To add yet another layer of history to the main characters seems a bit overkill.

He didn't even axe her what her name was. (ABC/Jack Rowand) GINNIFER GOODWIN, JOSH DALLAS
He didn’t even axe her what her name was. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

In Storybroke, Snow was sleeping in bed but then woke up in the woods where she was confronted by the Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla). The Queen told her that she wants her heart, and David’s as well since they share the same heart. She gave Snow a potion. So was there really a reason for the advance notice of what the EQ planned to do? The taunting the scene represents seemed a bit unnecessary.

The potion turned out to be water from the River of Lost Souls in the Underworld. Regina (also Lana Parrilla) figured she got it from Gold’s shop to use it to destroy the town. This might have worked better if it came as a surprise toward the end rather than tipped by the Queen so early on.

Mother Superior (Keegan Connor Tracy) suggested that a magical sapling could be used to entrap the Queen. Yup, the same one from the Enchanted Forest. And she cast a spell to help lead them to it. Because magic. And convenience.

The royal couple is protected by an infant tree. (ABC/Jack Rowand) GINNIFER GOODWIN, JOSH DALLAS
The royal couple is protected by an infant tree. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Regina wrote a note for Zelena (Rebecca Mader) to meet her at Gold’s shop, and signed it as the Evil Queen. That led to Zelena walking in on Gold (Robert Carlyle) and the Queen sharing a bit of romantic time in the back room. It shook things up in the alliance. Then they decided to use it to their advantage.

Once Snow and David both found and touched the sapling, their love history flashed before their eyes. Then the Evil Queen showed up and destroyed it. Good. The existence of the sapling as a solution seemed too convenient. Quickly getting rid of it was a good thing. Let the story build before bringing it back, assuming they do. If they don’t, it was pointless. She told them to give their hearts willingly or have the town destroyed.

It's so much easier to destroy the town when they're all in one place. (ABC/Jack Rowand) EMILIE DE RAVIN, REBECCA MADER
It’s so much easier to destroy the town when they’re all in one place. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

At a gathering in the cemetery, EQ threatened the townspeople with destruction if Snow and David didn’t show up. When they did show, she yanked their hearts out, put a curse on them, then shoved them back in. Snow collapsed and then vanished. Once the others found her, she was sleeping in the woods. David kissed her which woke her up, but caused him to fall asleep. In something that seems inspired by and an interesting twist on Ladyhawke, when one is awake, the other is asleep, a sleeping curse with a twist.

Zelena told Belle (Emilie de Ravin) about Gold and EQ. Apparently she didn’t care about that, just that Gold acquired the shears to use on their baby. Gold was not happy with Zelena.

There were a few hand of the writer moments, and a few parts that could have been done better. But it did help move the story along and didn’t stretch anything out. It should be interesting to see how the new curse plays out. And I would like to see more focus on the main topic of the season so far, the curse of the Savior.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.



Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME They Found Nemo


Episode 606 “Dark Waters”
Written by Andrew Chambliss and Brigitte Hales
Directed by Robert Duncan

In this episode, there were a key, a sonogram, and giant calamari!


In flashback, Captain Hook (Colin O’Donoghue) found a stowaway (Faran Tahir) on his ship. When he tried to throw him off the ship, the unwanted visitor pushed Hook off the side, then jumped in after him to be taken aboard the submarine Nautilus. On the sub, it was revealed that the person was Captain Nemo and was there looking for Hook to help him. In doing so, he further proved that our intrepid heroes in the enchanted world had no down time. They were all too busy appearing in other people’s stories.

Nemo was out for vengeance, Hook was bent on vengeance, and there was a crew member (Nick Eversman) who wanted vengeance on the ones that killed his family. I see a pattern here. There seems to be a lot of that on this show.

In some caverns, Hook was attacked by the Kraken, and Nemo killed it with an enchanted spear. With the giant creature shown on the opening credits, one would think it would have a more prominent role in the story. The three found a chest. Nemo opened it and revealed a key which led to the “Mysterious Island” where they could start their lives again devoid of loss.

Back on the ship, Hook noticed a blade on Nemo’s desk, and learned that the crewman was Hook’s half brother Liam. Hook decided to leave so he wouldn’t have to face Liam. But in a struggle while Hook was trying to leave, Liam accidentally stabbed Nemo.

That's CAPTAIN Clean. MISTER Clean was my father. (ABC/Jack Rowand) COLIN O'DONOGHUE, FARAN TAHIR
That’s CAPTAIN Clean. MISTER Clean was my father. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

In Storybrooke, Regina (Lana Parrilla) called out the Evil Queen (also Lana Parrilla) in an attempt to distract her and Zelena (Rebecca Mader) so that David (Josh Dallas) and Snow (Gennifer Goodwin) could rescue Archie. It worked. And with one warning from Regina, the three disappeared with Archie. Although he’s not cured of being a cricket, I do like the fact that they’re not stretching subplots out for excessive periods of time. All too often, a “rescue Archie” type of subplot would stretch out for half a season. They haven’t been doing that much this season.

Aladdin (Deniz Akdeniz) still refused to help Jasmine (Karen David) save Agrabah, no longer seeing himself as the Savior. When Emma (Jennifer Morrison) found him stealing from an unlocked car, she took him to the city limit and explained that she tried to run away from her role many times. Aladdin opened up to her about what happened in Agrabah. He then apologized to Jasmine who explained that the kingdom disappeared after he left.

The Evil Queen told Henry (Jared Gilmore) where Hook was hiding the magic shears instead of getting rid of them. Hook went to the docks to try and stop Henry from throwing them into the water when the Nautilus showed up and the crew took them aboard. As prisoners, the two found a way to escape, but only one diving suit. Hook had Henry use it to go and alert Emma.

Well, you wanted a sign. Here's one. (ABC/Jack Rowand) DENIZ AKDENIZ, JENNIFER MORRISON
Well, you wanted a sign. Here’s one. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Then Liam confronted Hook. He revealed that Hyde took Nemo to the Mysterious Island, which turned out to be the Land of Untold Stories. When Liam attacked Hook, Henry showed up, not having left like he was supposed to, which distracted Liam. That gave Hook the chance to knock him out.

At the hospital, Regina and Snow brought in one of the people from the Land of Untold Stories who had been injured when they came upon Belle (Emilie de Ravin) getting an ultrasound of the baby. And while Hook was visiting Liam there, it was found out that the one that David and Snow brought in was actually Nemo, who forgave Liam.

The Evil Queen was at the shop with Mr. Gold (Robert Carlyle) who wanted the magic “Shears of Destiny” to separate his son from his fate. The Queen tried to seduce Gold when Belle showed up and dropped a print of the ultrasound through the mail slot. The Queen showed Gold the shears which she had retrieved from the bottom of the ocean. She wanted to hatch a plan to take Snow’s heart.

In general, I liked the episode, especially how they’re moving through and not lingering on the subplots, only stretching the main Savior plot. I didn’t care much for the seduction part as it was unnecessary and out of place. But overall, well done.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.


Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME Aladdin Arrived In A Whole New World


Episode 605 “Street Rats”
Written by Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz
Directed by Norman Buckley

In this episode, we got a glimpse of Agrabah, without the whimsy of the Genie.


Aren’t people from the Middle East supposed to sound like people from the Middle East? For some reason, they all sound British, with the exception of Aladdin (Deniz Akdeniz) who sounds like he’s from Australia or New Zealand. It’s almost like watching Doctor Who where the only people who don’t sound British are Americans.

Anyway, in a flashback to Agrabah, Jafar (Oded Fehr) took three thieves into town while lecturing on the problem with thieves. He then called them street rats before transforming them into … well … rats. All the while, Aladdin (sans Abu) was there pickpocketing everyone watching the spectacle. Gutsy move. His actions seemed a bit blatant, but nobody noticed. Way to establish that he’s quite the thief, albeit a bit awkward.

Princess Jasmine (Karen David) showed up and wanted to hire Aladdin to retrieve the Diamond in the Rough from the Cave of Wonders so she can fight Jafar. When she expected him to pick the lock on the entrance to the cave, he jokingly said “open sesame”, and the door opened to his astonishment. (There were people on Twitter who didn’t know the phrase originated in another story in the same collection as Aladdin, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves from One Thousand and One Nights.)

A "shear" way to escape one's Fate, I suppose. (ABC/Jack Rowand) DENIZ AKDENIZ, JENNIFER MORRISON, JARED S. GILMORE
A “shear” way to escape one’s Fate, I suppose. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

In there, Aladdin and Jasmine found a large diamond resting on the blade of a balanced scimitar. He did a weight switch a la Indiana Jones, though with much better success. Granted, a pillar fell and Aladdin discovered he had magic by stopping it. There were no darts or rolling boulders to contend with. And Jasmine realized he was the actual Diamond in the Rough, and she told him he was the Savior. At no point was there a lovable and whimsical Genie. There’s no way anyone could replace Robin Williams. But it was still a little bit of a let down leaving that part of the story out.

Jasmine gave Aladdin a golden scarab which represents heroism. Then Jafar had him follow the red bird to show him that the path of the Savior would only lead to his demise. He gave Aladdin a pair of golden shears that once belonged to the Fates and could sever his future as the Savior to save his life. Jasmine went to seek help from her father, the Sultan (Cedric De Souza), only to find him under Jafar’s control and playing with a toy castle. Jafar imprisoned her in an hourglass trap. In flew Aladdin on the flying carpet to save the day, freeing them from Jafar’s control. When Aladdin offered for Jasmine to join him in going after Jafar, she declined and wanted to protect the kingdom.

In Storybrooke, Emma (Jennifer Morrison) and Archie (Raphael Sbarge) followed the red bird to find the Oracle, since Emma thought she could help better than he could. They found her dead. They stopped Jasmine who was running away. In the interrogation room, she revealed who she was to Emma and David (Josh Dallas). And she referred to Aladdin as “the Savior”, which stunned both of them as well as an onlooking Snow (Gennifer Goodwin). Then came one of the best parts, Emma knowing her story because she saw the movie. Although a bit awkward that she saw the movie Aladdin but not the movies for all the other characters. But it was a fun little fourth wall break.

The Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla) disguised herself as Archie and sent the real Archie to Zelena’s (Rebecca Mader) house since he wouldn’t divulge what he and Emma spoke about in their sessions. She then confronted Emma in front of her family and got her to reveal her visions to them. They were angry that she hadn’t been open and honest with them, and the Queen left satisfied. But they told her that they would stand beside her and do everything they could to help her live. Regina (also Lana Parrilla) was bothered by the insinuation that she might be the figure in the black hood.

That's one way to silence a conscience. (ABC/Jack Rowand) RAPHAEL SBARGE
That’s one way to silence a conscience. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

One thing I haven’t really cared for much on this show is they turn villains into heroes, but then change them back before the new facet of the character can be fully explored. This happened when the Evil Queen convinced Zelena to once again embrace her wicked side as an example to her baby. So she turned Archie back into a cricket locked in a cage above the baby’s crib. The only one they continue to explore as a hero, and quite effectively, is Regina. I hope that continues.

Regina made a potion that would link the magic of the two Saviors so that they could find Aladdin. It led them to a crypt underneath the Storybrooke cemetery. Jasmine found the scarab she gave to him by a skeleton and left assuming he was dead. But then he appeared out of a corner, alive and well, to Emma and Henry (Jared S. Gilmore). Apparently he had been in Storybrooke all along. Okay, that’s a bit far fetched. But not as much as other things they’ve tried in the past. Anyway, he wasn’t a Savior since he used the shears to cut ties to his fate. When he went to Jasmine, she wanted his help saving Agrabah. But he no longer had the power.

Emma gave the shears to Hook (Colin O’Donoghue) since she intended to do what she needed to do, whether she would live or die. He promised to bury the shears “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”, giving a clear setup for the next chapter in the tale.

Another thing like Indiana Jones, a lovely crypt. (ABC/Jack Rowand) COLIN O'DONOGHUE, JARED S. GILMORE, LANA PARRILLA, JENNIFER MORRISON
Another thing like Indiana Jones, a lovely crypt. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

All in all a good episode. I like that the writers aren’t over stretching stories to fill time, such as the four episode arc with Jekyll and Hyde. Though I expect we might not be fully done with that story. Still, moving it along from one subplot to another is working well so far this season. I wish they would linger a bit on the villains’ heroic sides for more than just Regina. And as good as it is to have new characters’ histories mix with our main characters, it’s a bit overdone and it’s good to see that the only crossover with Aladdin is the title of “Savior”. Also, the Three Bears Salon with Goldilocks treating Zelena and the Evil Queen as they discussed the queen’s plans was a nice touch.

I’m excited to see what they do with Captain Nemo!


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.


Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME A Boat Became A Prison


Episode 604 “Strange Case”
Written by David H. Goodman and Nelson Soler
Directed by Alrick Riley

In this episode, my hopes of Jekyll and Hyde not having any prior connection to the main characters were dashed.


In flashback, Dr. Jekyll (Hank Harris) got Mary (Elizabeth Blackmore), a woman he was friends with “and had feelings for”, to try to talk her father, Dr. Lydgate (Jonny Coyne), into getting him into a scientific academy to pay for his experiment. Lydgate thought is was nuts and turned him down. Enter Rumpelstiltskin (Robert Carlyle). Really??? All this time they were completely independent from the existing story, coming in from another world. But now the oddity of universal connections has stretched to this one.

Rumpel fixed the experiment for him because it was supposed to help the Dark One as well. Jekyll took it himself, and … well, you know how that part of the story goes. Rumpel talked the new half into confronting Lydgate and even gave him the name Mr. Hyde, since he couldn’t walk around calling himself Dr. Jekyll. Hyde used extortion about the alleged affair he was having. Jekyll was surprised to find the membership card in his pocket later.

Serum or choke slam? What will it be? (ABC/Jack Rowand) HANK HARRIS, ROBERT CARLYLE
Serum or choke slam? What will it be? (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Hyde then wooed Mary, who said she had no interest in Jekyll. When she woke up in the morning, it was Jekyll in bed with her instead of Hyde, and he had no idea what happened. She figured out that the serum worked and he used it on himself. She tried to get away and he fought to stop her. In the struggle, she fell out the window and died. He took the serum so that Hyde would take the blame. And not once did they ever explain how the two became separated. Perhaps the same way Regina and the Evil Queen did? Maybe there will be an explanation in a later episode.

In Storybrooke, Gold cut his hair before being visited by Hyde and the Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla), with Hyde demanding a necklace that belonged to Mary. Gold discovered when delivering a force choke to Hyde that he couldn’t be killed. The Evil Queen assured Gold that her deal not to harm Belle (Emilie de Ravin) or their unborn baby was still intact, but Hyde harming them was fair game. So Gold put up a protection spell around Hook’s ship that would keep Hyde out … and Belle in. She was not amused.

You have failed me for the last time, Mr. Hyde. (ABC/Jack Rowand) ROBERT CARLYLE, SAM WITWER
You have failed me for the last time, Mr. Hyde. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Jekyll was working on a new serum. Hyde and the Evil Queen stopped by and ended up trashing the lab equipment. When Regina and Gold got there, Jekyll had a small amount of the serum left. Gold took his heart, put the remaining serum on his dagger and went after Hyde in the woods. After Hyde overpowered Emma (Jennifer Morrison) and David, Gold showed up and stabbed him in the heart. But Hyde had switched out the serums in the garage lab. He then took the dagger and ordered Gold to take him to Belle.

Hyde couldn’t get on the ship due to the protection spell. So Jekyll went on. He attacked Belle when Hook came to the rescue. He ended up killing Jekyll unintentionally by impaling him up on a harpoon. Hyde died with him. It then became clear that the only way to kill the Evil Queen was for Regina to die.

You have the necklace? I'm standing beside myself. (ABC/Jack Rowand) DAVID AVALON, SAM WITWER
You have the necklace? I’m standing beside myself. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Gold released the protection spell and let Belle go free. He tried to explain to her that the reason for his wanting the serum in the first place was because he was falling in love with her when she was his servant. He wanted the serum to separate him from the beast inside to protect him from his feelings. But it never happened. She told him that she would never love him again. His response was that eventually, in order to protect the child, she would eventually have to. Why is it that after he seems to play all his cards he always seems to have more?

Snow (Gennifer Goodwin) went back to teaching at the school, but was having no luck reaching her students. So her teacher’s aide, who would turn out to be Princess Jasmine (Karen David) looking for Aladdin, suggested she take a different route. So she had her students learn Newton’s Third Law of Motion by shooting arrows at their F-grade homework.

Maybe you could teach the kids better using a deadly weapon. (ABC/Jack Rowand) KAREN DAVID, GINNIFER GOODWIN
Maybe you could teach the kids better using a deadly weapon. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

Although the setup for Aladdin was good, I’m still annoyed that they had to have a history crossover with the established characters. It’s being overdone. Otherwise not a bad episode. And it’s good that they didn’t wear out the Jekyll and Hyde characters.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.


Recap: ONCE UPON A TIME Treachery Was A … Shoe?


Episode 603 “The Other Shoe”
Written by Jane Espenson & Jerome Schwartz
Directed by Steve Pearlman

In this episode, there were a glass slipper, a magic key, and a talking mouse!


In flashback, a girl named Ella (Jessy Schram) was slaving away for her wicked stepmother, Lady Tremaine (Lisa Banes), and stepsisters. An invite from the prince to a ball arrived by the prince’s footman, Jacob (Max Lloyd-Jones). Ella asked to go along stating that she had her own gown. One of the stepsisters, Clorinda (Mekenna Melvin), tossed the gown into the furnace, leaving it blackened. Then, in one of the most creative explanations for the character name, referred to Ella’s gown being turned to cinders and called her … wait for it … Cinderella!

A key belonging to her mother fell out, a key to the Land of Untold Stories. She explained to her dormouse friend, Gus, that she didn’t believe in magic like the key is supposed to be. But yet she believes in talking mice. Riiight.

We were invited to the royal dance? It's going to be a ball! (ABC/Jack Rowand) MEKENNA MELVIN, LISA BANES, GOLDIE HOFFMAN, JESSY SCHRAM
We were invited to the royal dance? It’s going to be a ball! (ABC/Jack Rowand)

At the ball, Ella manages to show up, and she meets Snow (Gennifer Goodwin) for the first time. It’s strange how many stories show up and already have a history with our intrepid heroes. As episode writer Jane Espenson told me via Twitter, they’ve found that the audience responds better when our beloved heroes are involved. But at a certain point, at least to me, it starts becoming a bit unbelievable, even for a fairy tale. Couldn’t a protagonist just have a Save The Cat moment?

She then met Prince Thomas (Tim Phillips) and a spark was kindled. The then told her to stay where she was since he had to go do something. Then Lady Tremaine took the opportunity to tell Ella that Prince Thomas was actually making fun of her. So she looked for where the prince was and found her giving a rose to Clorinda. So she ran away and left one of her glass slippers.

That night, Ella was going to use the key to escape to the Land of Untold Stories when Clorinda stopped her. The prince gave her the rose since she was going to marry Jacob, in spite of Lady Tremaine’s preferences. Clorinda ran off to join up with Jacob. Tremaine used the remaining glass slipper as a bargaining tool to force Ella to reveal where Clorinda was going. She gave in, and the wicked stepmother dropped and shattered the slipper anyway. That’s what always got me about Cinderella. She tends to end up with magical (of some sort) outfits, but the shoes are always fragile.

Tremaine locked Ella up and went to go find Clorinda and Jacob. Snow and Prince Thomas showed up at the door. Gus got out and, in mouse talk, told Snow (who apparently is fluent in Mouseish) about Ella being locked up. (Perhaps Dr. Dolittle should show up at some point, with a guest appearance by Lassie.) So they got her out and went to stop Tremaine, who stabbed Jacob, wounded Clorinda, and used the key to take her and Clorinda to the Land of Untold Stories.

In Storybrooke, Regina (Lana Parrilla), Snow, and David (Josh Dallas) paid a visit to Mr. Hyde (one of the few characters who didn’t have a past relationship with any of our intrepid heroes) with Regina’s favorite food in order to try to get him to talk. But they found that the Evil Queen (also Lana Parrilla) had beat them there. He had luxurious furniture and a gourmet meal spread. The only way he would be willing to talk is if they removed the cuffs on him.

At Granny’s Diner, Ashley (formerly Ella) told Emma (Jennifer Morrison), Hook (Colin O’Donoghue), and Henry (Jared Gilmore) that she was happy being able to help assimilate the children from the Land of Untold Stories into Storybrooke. Then after Emma visited Archie (Raphael Sbarge) about her visions (a character which has been extremely underutilized for way too long), Sean (formerly Prince Thomas) informed her that Ashley just left with a shotgun. Afraid that she might be going after her stepmother, Emma got Hook and Henry and began looking for her.

Ashley's got a gun. Her whole world's come undone. From lookin' straight at the sun. (ABC/Jack Rowand) JESSY SCHRAM
Ashley’s got a gun. Her whole world’s come undone. From lookin’ straight at the sun. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

They caught up with her only to find out she was looking for Clorinda since she was worried about her. As she got away, the Evil Queen showed up and sent them off to the “chessboard” (some deserted road). Henry then used the book to find out where to go.

Ashley found Clorinda in a barn, injured. She put the gun down to check on her. Then she found out the injury was being faked, and Tremaine turned the gun on her. Clorinda discovered that Jacob was still alive, and the two were reunited. Then Ema, Hook, and Henry stopped Tremaine from shooting any of them. So Tremaine simply used her cane and stabbed Ashley. Henry convinced Emma that she could use her magic to heal her. She did. And Tremaine was arrested and forced to clean up trash under Grumpy’s (Lee Arenberg) supervision.

Watch where you point that thing! No, really. Use the sights. (ABC/Jack Rowand) JARED GILMORE, COLIN O'DONOGHUE, JENNIFER MORRISON, LISA BANES
Watch where you point that thing! No, really. Use the sights. (ABC/Jack Rowand)

David visited Mr. Gold (Robert Carlyle) who made a deal with him. Gold would tell him more about how his father died. All he had to do was deliver a message to Belle (Emilie de Ravin). So he took the message to Belle, telling her about the deal. He would find out that his father was murdered in a cart accident. Belle listened to the cassette tape from Gold. That’s right. The man of magic is using ’80s technology.

Snow came up with a plan to help Dr. Jekyll (Hank Harris) stop the Evil Queen and Mr. Hyde (Sam Witwer). They went to Dr. Whale’s (David Anders) lab in his garage. But not before the Evil Queen freed Hyde and the two walked away. Now Frankenstein and Jekyll will be working together. Let that sink in.

The heavy use of new characters intertwining with our intrepid heroes isn’t quite getting old, but is starting to lost believability. Still a pretty decent episode though.


Once Upon a Time airs Sunday nights at 8/7c on ABC.