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Once Upon a Time: Into the Deep

“I’m done reading about heroes, I want to be one.”

Once Upon a Time has prided itself on being a character-driven show. If the past six weeks of flashbacks and dialogue heavy drama have taught us anything, it’s that. You’ve got to wonder if it’s only possible for the writers to bring something so character centric in those weeks where action and mythology take a backseat. But here we are, and already this season there’s been two examples that have shot those fears down. Broken, aside from being a scintillating breakneck premiere, was also filled with those lovely reunions, and personal revelations, and now we’ve got 'Into the Deep.' It wasn’t an episode that was perfect in every sense, but there were moments of gold here and there.

Like the twisty-turny fun of who gets to travel back to the red room. Okay, maybe there was a bit too much of that whole “I’ll do it,” “No, I’ll do it” stuff, but it really amped up the tension as we got nearer and nearer to our final piece of the puzzle to get back home. From Charming’s sacrifice to Mulan’s desperate attempts to live up to Prince Philip’s wishes we went from one personal distress after another.

I really enjoyed the sparky banter between Cora and Hook as well. I even bought into his betrayal half way through. Emma leaving him in Tallahassee felt like the right move at the time, but now I kind of wonder if maybe he should have been kept close by; keep your enemies closer and all that. It’s something Hook gets when it comes to Cora; sneaking his way into Aurora’s cell and worming his way back into her good books, all in the name of getting his own vengeance. There’s definitely going to be some blood spilled if they both arrive in Storybrooke, and you just know they’ll find a way back.

Snow and Charming will definitely find a way back home, too. Unlike the slightly trashy love triangle last year, I do kind of appreciate this separation that’s going on. You know they still love each other, so seeing them apart like this is even more painful than it was last time. Cheesy as it was, I smarted a little at that scene when Snow realized she was waking up, and leaving Charming all alone. If she stays strong she can get him back, though.

I wonder if everyone in Storybrooke has that faith in Charming that he was so gun-ho about? I think Henry might, and he might even have some faith in Regina, who seems to staying strong against her urge to use magic. Something tells me that urge will get even harder to fight when mother meets daughter in the next few weeks. But if that confrontation happens in an episode that skips the flashbacks but still places well written character moments ahead of cheap thrills, then color me excited.

3.5 out of 5 zombie fairy tale characters

Plus

There was something eerie about Regina teaching Henry about potion making.

It was great seeing Aurora standing up and doing something for someone else. She’s kind of been floating around for the past while.

LOL at Snow’s mini panic attack when she woke up.

He Said, She Said

Henry: “I’m done reading about heroes, I want to be one.”

Aurora: “Mulan, I was cursed to spend eternity in that horrible sleep. The only reason I’m here is because you and Philip risked your lives to save me. Every day since my waking has been a gift, so let me do something with it.”

Previously posted at PandaTV.

8 comments:

  1. I'm really beginning to like watching the character of Hook. I was convinced he was helping Aurora for quite a while, but loved it when his true motive was revealed.

    As we begin to close in on the characters from the two worlds coming together, I am enjoying the battle lines that are being drawn. It should be fun to watch when they all square off.

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  3. The show managed its time MUCH better than it has been doing recently. I didn't even realize there were no flashbacks until the episode was mostly over. That's a first for OUAT, right?

    I loved this episode. Very season one, which is a good thing. I really like where the show is taking Regina. Her effort to redeem herself in Henry's eyes is very sweet. I just hope it doesn't turn out she's playing another angle (i.e. putting Henry's guardian into a coma so she can regain custody).

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  4. Great review, Panda! It made me appreciate more the episode more than I did originally--thank you!

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  5. About half-way through the episode, I was thinking about how much more I liked Aurora's character than in previous episodes. I then jokingly thought that (following the rules of television) it meant they would kill her off by the end of the show. I wasn't quite right, but I was close. Great ep!

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  6. Drat! And here I was hoping that Hook wouldn't be one of the "bad guys" after all... grrrr! But very well played on his part! Wait 'till Mulan finds out! ;o)

    Excellent episode, and great review Panda!

    I'm more worried about how the town will stay together with Charming in an enchanted slumber! Will they turn to Regina? Turn against each other? Rally together? Oh dear!

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  7. CrazyCris, I didn't even think of that! Who will be there to lead Storybrooke? Maybe Ruby?

    I know I'm introducing logic into a show about Snow White and Prince Charming, but wouldn't it have made more sense to get someone who had a true love in Storybrooke to go into the sleeping curse? Kathryn/Abigail owes Charming, and we know Frederick is in Storybrooke. She could have gone in, given Snow the message, and been woken up immediately. No muss, no fuss.

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  8. Your logic is flawless, sunbunny, as is your nickname.

    I love OUaT as much as I love Panda's reviews, but you've got to make concessions.

    I love the idea of Regina becoming a unwitting leader. she could prove she can be good once and for all. She could be accepted in the community.

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