Monday, October 5, 2015
In Which I Review Once Upon a Time (5x2)
Here's the sad and honest truth--I don't have a whole lot to talk about. This episode was not the least bit thought provoking except in wondering how far the writers could take their characters into the absurd. Everyone stops to attend a ball; Merlin is in a tree (though, I have less issue with that, honestly, because it's so true to Arthurian mythology); Regina pretends to be the Savior for some inexplicable reason (lying is not a good way to make friends, y'all and the ruse is quickly learned). Because of the complete lack of depth in the flashback of six weeks ago, I want to ask some questions and just spitball some answers. That's what the show has left me with; well, this episode at least. Like in the first half of season 4, there is nothing in the way of introspective character building. It's all about the shiny shiny plot. I can't sit here and wax on and on about moral and philosophical questions of goodness and heroism and villainy. Regina says she's the Savior, is confronted by her very obvious past by one lone person in Camelot (do Arthur and Guinevere not get out much?) and proves how far she's come by not turning Ser Rude into a toad. Bravo. But it's nothing we haven't seen before and therefore Regina's get a brief round of applause before I become bored again. Thankfully, that's when Charming up and shanked Ser Rude even though last season the empty platitude "heroes don't kill" was bandied about over and over after Emma magicked Cruella off a cliff. See, consistency. It's not a thing on this show. So now heroes can kill when their friend is in danger? Okay, well, Emma saved Henry from the crazy two-toned sociopath last year and yet it was the final straw that broke a camel (or something) and she went all Crazy Red Eyes and held a gun to Lily's head in the middle of an abandoned road.
Hell Hath No Fury
Okay, OUAT, nice try but even going to my comfort zone of Greek mythology isn't going to work in saving this episode. Like in the flashback there is little here to talk about that is of interest except the plot, apart from one thing that does make my myth-loving side tingle. So let's spit ball some ideas about where this is going. The appearance of the Fury and Charon in his boat signals the reality of the Underworld; it exists here in the Onceiverse and I am going to wager that we'll see it again. In fact, I think I just figured out how the season is going to end--Emma is going to have the Darkness sucked out of her by the Fury, but with the Darkness also goes her soul and down down down goes the Savior into the Underworld. What then? Oh, only one of my favorite classic tropes: the katabasis. I had thought that the show would use this half of the season to be Emma's katabasis, though with a less literal descent into the Underworld. But, it might be that they will go super traditional and have their heroine literally descend into the Underworld and have to face down death (in the form of a fast talking Hades a la James Woods) before resurfacing, the mistress of both words, a Savior fully realized. That's how you end the series and it's one I could get behind so long as Emma saves herself and the writers don't dip into their Greek mythic bag and make Hook out to be like some sort of Orpheus figure going down into the Underworld to find his Eurydice. If the writers really want to bring this full circle, then they will give Snow a bigger role to play (should this prediction come to pass) and stage it as a successful Demeter and Persephone story where Demeter can save her child for more than six months of the year. Emma saved Henry and therefore saved everyone. Snow saves Emma and therefore saves everyone. Parallels! Like I said last week, if done right, meaning without any of the writers tendencies to insert those annoying flashy and tweetable moments, then it could really be something. It could be mythic and interesting and in line with how stories are told. Sadly, Zelena is still around (if mute) which means we aren't likely to get a heartfelt and deep story. And that's...it. That's all I got for this episode; a plot heavy, uninteresting, CGI eyesore that sets up potential plot but loses that solid ground it found last week. So it goes here in the Onceiverse.
--A dwarf became a tree. To quote Regina, "well,that's new."
--The CGI for Camelot might be the worst CGI on the show. I can't decide if it's this or Arrendale.
--Rumple chose power over love. Well, yes but also no. He needed his power to find a certain little boy named Bae. But, oh right, he doesn't exist on this show anymore and Rumple is just "evil." My bad! Remember when character motivations were really complex and interesting?
--Emma Swan is like Bloody Mary or Beetlejuice; you have to say her name three times to get her to appear.
--Snow and Charming will die with Regina, leaving their newborn son an orphan. Parents of the year, right there.
--Trees like tacos.
--Henry has a crush because instead of finding him a friend, we went straight to romance.
--Silent Zelena is the only good Zelena.
--True Love's Kiss: Denied!