Wednesday, May 14, 2014

TV Recap: Once Upon a Time 3-21 & 22 - Snow Drifts & There's No Place Like Home

Yes, I'm back in town and ready to recap.  But I think the recap portion will be shorter than normal this time.  After all, the finale aired on Sunday.  Everybody and their mother has talked about it at this point, right?

The episode began at Granny's, where everyone had gathered to hear the name of Mary Margaret and David's baby.  However, before they do, Emma gets trapped into a corner about whether she is staying in Storybrooke or not.  She leaves rather than answer those questions, but Hook grabs the book of fairy tales and takes off after her.

About that time, the time portal at Zelena's opens.  While most of our heroes head to the jail, they see that she is gone.  Gold alters the tape so it looks like she killed herself.  Everyone figures that Zelena had just enough magic left to open the portal, which I guess is the case.  They just need to figure out a way to close it.

However, Emma and Hook, who aren't with the others, go to investigate.  They get too close and Emma gets sucked in.  Hook then goes in after her.

They arrive just outside Gheppetto's village as Regina comes to try to find out where Snow White is.  She has a woman prisoner with them, and she is using this prisoner as an example of what will happen if you don't cooperate.  The villagers give up nothing.

Emma and Hook, who have been witnessing this, realize they need to get back to their time before they change anything, a la Back to the Future, which Emma references.  They figure that Rumplestiltskin is the only person who can help them.  However, before they can get there, they stumble on the scene where Snow White robs Charming's carriage.  Emma snaps a twig, which catches people's attention, and makes it so that Snow White and Charming don't meet.

After getting Rumple's promise of help, Emma and Hook have to set about correcting the time line.  That involves getting Snow to still steal the ring, this time from a royal ball.  First, Hook has to offer passage out of the realm to Snow, with Emma distracting the Hook of their time so that our Hook can make the offer.  Then Rumple sends the two, with disguises, to the ball so that they can make sure the ring gets stolen.  All is going according to plan until Regina shows up.  In her haste to leave, Snow leaves the ring behind and Emma winds up grabbing it, only to be captured by Regina.

Fortunately, Neal taught Emma how to pick a lock, so she escapes, taking her fellow prisoner, the same one they saw when she first appeared, with her so this prisoner won't be executed.  Since she wants to go back to her family, which would change the time line, Hook knocks her out and they agree to take her back with them to the present.

Meanwhile, Hook, Charming, and Snow teamed up with Red to try to free Emma and get the ring back.  However, when Snow gets into the castle, she instead decides to use the powder she has to change Regina into a bug.  Regina out magic's Snow, however, and Snow winds up captured and sentenced to be burned at the stake.  Emma, helpless, watches.

However, at the camp fire that night, a bug shows up.  Yes, it is Snow, who somehow used the powder on herself and delayed when it changed her so that Regina didn't know that Snow escaped.  She then takes Charming on a route back to his kingdom - across the troll bridge.  Snow is able to outsmart the trolls without the magic powder and their love story is back on track.

With that taken care of, Emma and Hook head back to Rumple.  Bad news, he can't recreate the magic to send them back - only someone who came through the portal can.  Then he whisks them away to a warehouse, where Hook starts looking through stuff, taking a vase of some kind and setting it out.

Hook and Emma talk, which leads to Emma announcing she wants to go home.  Now that she has connected with this part of her past, she feels like she belongs in Storybrooke.  Plus, seeing Snow almost die made her love her parents.

And that does the trick.  Emma's magic is back, and the wand, which Rumple had told them they needed to use to open the portal works.  Hook and the mystery woman go through.  Just before Emma does, Rumple appears, asking if he reconnects with his son.  Emma finally tells him the truth, but makes him promise to drink a potion so he forgets, which he then does.

Back in Storybrooke, Emma reunites with her family, who now have memories of Princess Leia (the name she used at the ball).  She also announces her plan to stay.  She has also realized just how much Hook has sacrificed for her and loves her, and they kiss.  Finally, we learn that her new baby brother is going to be called Neal.

We also see Gold and Belle get married.  Dr. Hopper performs the ceremony attended only by Belle's father.  Belle still wants to give Gold the (fake) dagger back, but he won't accept it.

All is not happiness, however.  We finally learn who the woman that Emma saved is - Maid Marion.  As Robin Hood and his son hug their long dead relative, Regina turns to Emma and yells at her for ruining her happiness just like Snow did all those years ago.  She also says, "I hope nothing else came back with you."

Funny you should mention that, Regina, because the final scene takes us back to the barn, where we see the vase that Hook was handling earlier flop on it's side.  A cold blue starts to come out from it, followed by a person who, from the back, looks exactly like Elsa.

Yep, they're going the Frozen route next year.

I know many fans who were huge fans of this two hour movie (and it really was).  I enjoyed seeing Kathryn/Abigail again.  I laughed at many of the lines, which meant something to us even if the other characters didn't know it yet.  So it was certainly fun.

And yet.

I think I was expecting some kind of major fight against evil in this episode, like chasing Zelena (who had somehow survived) through time.  I was disappointed that there was no villain, and they do villains so well on this show.

I'm also not completely thrilled that they are doing Frozen next year.  It just seems too popular to me, like they are jumping on a bandwagon.  I've seen in interviews that they are promising a new take on it.  And if they go the original Snow Queen route, that will certainly be the case.  I'm sure once season 4 gets going, I'll really enjoy it.  But it just doesn't seem as fresh as they could have been.

I did call something coming to take away happy Regina.  It will be interesting to see how that develops next season.  I'll also got to thinking that the baby would be Neal, so I was happy to be right there, too.

I think that's all I've got for this finale.  Sound off in the comments and tell me what you thought of this and the direction for the next season.

And I hope you'll keep coming around this summer as we wait for the new season to start.


  1. I really liked the because it was like it's own little separate movie. Nothing about Neverland, nothing about Oz but all about the characters we have come to know and love. I liked that it also kind of recapped everything about the Fairy Tale story. Enjoyed watching how they used closeups on Jennifer Goodwin when telling the story from the past because she was (and still is) pregnant when they filmed this. Liked the use of the stunt double and also cutting in scenes (like on the bridge) from the episode when that all happened. Very well done.

    I liked the homage to Back To The Future and so many other stories about the future. All it takes is one little thing, such as the snapping twig in this case, to alter the course of time. Got a kick out of Emma giving herself the name of Princess Leia. Hahaha.

    It was great to see so many characters both living and dead. I guess when one dies on this show, ie Neal, you get to come back in flashbacks I also liked seeing Regina as her evil, evil self!

    But speaking of Regina - that poor woman just can't get a break. She was so happy and then poof. Now I wonder how this will change her next season.

    Jennifer Goodwin and Josh __________? sure got a lot of practice holding a baby. Wonder when theirs is due.

    Now about the ending. Not sure about this at all. We know that Elsa the Snow Queen was being kept in an urn (or whatever) in Rumple's vault which we heard Belle say at the beginning is where he kept his darkest magic (or something like that). So that would imply that Elsa is evil? dark magic? something else? It will be interesting to see how much of "Frozen" they put in to next season. I hope not a lot because then I feel like they are just playing to the popularity of this movie to sell more copies of it. But, if they go the route of Hans C. Anderson's Snow Queen instead, that might prove to be more interesting. But I have to add, Frozen is based on Snow Queen and yet there is nothing in the story of Snow Queen even remotely related to Frozen.
    I think they chose Frozen to cash in and that's the part I don't like. Sure, they have had references to other Disney movies and put Disney things in (like Bell and the books and the chipped cups) but this is going too far I think. And we never actually saw that urn or whatever it was go in to the portal. I don't remember Hook handling it. We saw it shake down in the vault when the portal opened and I saw it in the background on the ground behind Hook and Emma when they got back. Maybe they will show how it got through when it starts up again. The other mystery I have is how Snow used the dark fairy dust to turn herself in to a bug. She threw the dust at Regina. How did she have any left to turn herself into a bug? Maybe some still stuck to her hands? I don't know.

    So those are my thoughts. Actually they are what I wrote to a friend so I just did a copy and paste with a few little add ins :)

    1. Hook handled the urn (that's the word I was looking for) early on, almost as soon as they found themselves down there. As to how it got through, I just assumed it got pulled in - unintended consequences and all that.

      I'm sure they will go more toward the original story. They claim they've got a great twist on it, but it also sounds like their kids love Frozen so much, that is one reason why they went there. I'm sure by the time we watch it, I'll love it, but I do agree it seems like they are just cashing in.

      Unless Snow could control when the person she threw the powder on changed into a bug, I don't get how she used it. Definitely something they glossed over.

  2. Hearing that their kids really love Frozen somehow makes them using Frozen worse for me ;) I've not read the original version of Snow Queen, just the synopsis and I'm not sure how they would fit Frozen's Elsa into that story. Actually it's really small stories from what I read.

    1. I have a feeling once we get into the story next season, we won't care. They will find ways to make it fresh and exciting all over again.