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Once Upon a Time: Ruby Slippers

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Given how traditional the values of Once Upon a Time are, ‘Ruby Slippers’ went a long way towards taking those dated values apart, and rebuilding them for a modern audience. In light of the prejudicial developments of ‘Her Handsome Hero,’ what transpired here was a relief.

Taking Ruby, a character who is by all rights a Once veteran (even if she’s been forgotten about over the past couple of seasons), and making her a part of the show’s first ever bonafide gay couple was a wonderful step forward. It may not seem like much in an age where a lot of great LGBTQ characters are popping up all over television, but for a series that’s very much a family focused drama, it feels like an important moment.

I’m glad it wasn’t one of those lame insinuated romances, either. After what happened to Mulan’s forgotten love for Aurora, I was concerned that this blossoming dynamic would be brushed under the carpet with just a couple of subtle hints of something more between Ruby and Dorothy. Instead we got to see those hints pay off, albeit rather hastily. But let’s remember how quickly all of the other romances have grown on this show before. A whirlwind one is pretty much the norm for Once at this point.

I hope that this quasi happy ending for Ruby doesn’t mean she’ll be shipped off to pastures unknown again. Her appearance here made me long for the days when she and Snow were on the run together, or supporting each other through their own family/relationship woes. Meghan Ory is a captivating performer, and though Ruby wasn’t always a constant presence, her exit was a loss for the show. I’m hopeful that we might see her again, but even if we don’t, at least Ruby got some sort of closure. It’s a shame the same can’t be said for Mulan.

Zelena’s role in Dorothy’s sleeping curse didn’t play as big of a part in her rescue as I thought it would. Most of her time this week is dedicated to her struggle to choose a side in the war against Hades. It’s clear she wants to prove that she’s changed. Though she’s not doing it out of respect for her sister, she’s doing it for her baby, and that’s giving her more of a reason to change than anything she’s ever had before. I’m not sure where her allegiances lie now that she’s shacking up with Hades again, though. Is she going to be a double agent? Time will tell.



I still don’t get what Henry’s writing is accomplishing. Can’t he just write Hades into oblivion?

I like that Emma Caulfield is credited first every time she appears.

Emilie de Ravin’s maternity leave starts now, apparently, and not a moment too soon. It’s a wonder the poor girl hasn’t passed out from heatstroke from all those heavy coats she’s been using to cover her belly.

Yes to Belle wanting her father to be the one to wake her up from her self induced sleeping curse, and telling Rumple to stick it.

Snow is back in the real world again, thanks to Hook carving David’s name on her tombstone.

He Said, She Said

Snow: “When I met Charming, I hit him in the face. People in love hurt each other all the time.”

The bigger issues plaguing this series were very much present here, but I found myself captivated in the better moments that ‘Ruby Slippers’ gave us. Some parts even felt like vintage Once, and though I doubt the show will ever be as good as it used to be, I do think it can still hit the right notes every once in a while.

3.5 out of 5 dogs in baskets

Originally posted at PandaTV.


  1. Nice episode. I liked Ruby and Dorothy more than I thought..poor Mulan needs a girlfriend too.
    Bye for a while Belle..clever move.

  2. I loved Red's happy ending, but I was also wondering if Toto kissing Dorothy would have worked. =)

    "I still don’t get what Henry’s writing is accomplishing. Can’t he just write Hades into oblivion?" Henry decided to just record events like the pen was intended as the Apprentice advised. It could potentially give them intel.


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