Title White Out
Two-Sentence Summary In her desperation to find Anna, Elsa creates an ice cave that knocks out Storybrooke’s power (which Snow is left to fix) and traps Emma in fatally freezing temperatures. To help free his daughter, Charming digs into his past and a life-altering meeting with Anna to inspire Elsa to control her magic, but there are more sinister forces than Elsa afoot, as we meet a Storybrooke resident with her own chilling set of powers.
Emma: Aren’t you cold? I’m freezing.
Elsa: It’s never bothered me.
My Thoughts I love Once Upon a Time. I love its ability to be a little bit ridiculous and not take itself seriously all the time—this is a show about fairytales, after all. I love its unashamed optimism and the fact that it wears its heart so blatantly on its sleeve. I love its focus on love—between friends, romantic partners, and family members. And, more than anything, I love that it makes me feel. “White Out” was an episode that highlighted all of those things that I love about Once Upon a Time, and it did so by focusing on the family that was the reason I fell in love with this show in the first place and the sisters that had me so captivated in last week’s season premiere.
I was a little apprehensive after “A Tale of Two Sisters” about the sheer number of storylines being set up for this season and how that would affect the time spent developing the characters and relationships on the show. Thankfully, this episode chose to focus its attention on one angle—the Frozen arc and its connection to Emma and her family—instead of trying to cram too much in. For Rumplestiltskin and Regina fans, I’m sure it was a bit disappointing to see so little of your favorites. (Although both did have good moments.) However, I’m sure their time will come to take center stage again, and I for one really enjoyed this episode’s sense of focus, especially given how broad the scope of the premiere was. (But I’ll admit that my bias towards all things “Charming Family” probably helped with my enjoyment of this episode.)
When I saw that “White Out” was a Jane Espenson-penned episode, I knew we were in for a treat in terms of self-aware humor because she’s the best at weaving in funny and genre-savvy details throughout her episodes. From Emma making a “cool” pun with Elsa to Henry’s little comment about how Google doesn’t have answers for what to do when your mom has a breakup like Regina’s, I thought “White Out” had just the right amount of humor to balance out its emotional depth. And Bo Peep as an evil warlord was the kind of campy perfection you just have to embrace as a fan of this show. It was ridiculous, but that’s why it worked—kind of like Josh Dallas’s Fabio/80s hair band/Beyoncé wig. And it gave us the perfect detail of Bo Peep working at a butcher shop in Storybrooke. Between that and “Any Given Sundae,” it was nice to have some fun new details emerge about how Enchanted Forest personas transferred over to Storybrooke.
Also, you can’t talk about fun details in “White Out” and not talk about the plethora of perfect Frozen references. There was the cold not bothering Elsa (“Let It Go”), Anna loving sandwiches (“Love Is an Open Door”), and Anna’s alias being Joan (“Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?”). Each one made me smile.
Not only were the little nods to Frozen fun, the time spent further developing Anna and Elsa in this episode proved to me that these writers understand the core of these characters so well. The more time we spend with Anna, the more I’m convinced that Elizabeth Lail was born to play her. Her first encounter with Charming was perfect, although I am a little confused as to how he knows Kristoff. (I’m hoping that will be explained later.) But what really worked for me was the way this episode once again focused on Anna’s strength. She’s so much more than “adorkable.” Anna believes in people, and she believes in standing and fighting instead of running away. That’s not just a plot device to make her work with Charming’s story; that’s the center of her character in Frozen. Anna is driven by optimism and hope, and although it burned her before, she never let what happened with Hans (or almost dying from Elsa freezing her heart) destroy that ability to see the best in people. She’s a lot like Snow in that way, so it made sense that she and Charming would connect so easily. (Also, I love that Charming has a history of forming good friendships with strong women, like Anna and Red.)
Anna taught Charming so much more than just how to wield a sword (and twirl it—a moment that had me freaking out with joy from my couch). She taught him about the kind of bravery that was always inside him but just needed a spark to catch fire. Even as a shepherd, Charming wanted to do the right thing for his family, and now we know why that is. I’ve been waiting so long to find out what makes Charming tick, and, like many characters on this show, it turns out it was the loss of a loved one. Charming’s father being an alcoholic who died from the result of his drinking was one of those pieces of backstory that made perfect sense but I never would have guessed it beforehand. Charming’s desire to be the best father he can be, his fears about letting his children down in last season’s “The Tower,” and his desire to do the honorable thing all stem from trying to be better than his own father. His success as being a vastly different man than his father is an interesting counterpoint to the “sins of the father” motif we saw last season with the men on Rumplestiltskin’s side of Henry’s family tree.
Anna and Charming’s story was—like so many Once Upon a Time stories—a story of belief and a story of choosing to define yourself on your own terms. Anna helped Charming see who he wanted to be—a man who never gives up and fights for what matters to him. Anna has a kind of bravery that is vastly underrated. She lives her life with an open heart because she knows that’s the only way to truly live and not just survive. She doesn’t run from her problems or hide from them because she’s afraid, and she uses that bravery to inspire the people around her. Yes, it was cool to see her use a sword, but her real strength has always been in the way she faces life with openness and hope. And Lail captured that strength perfectly.
The themes set up in the flashbacks—never giving up on yourself or the people you love and the bravery that it takes to stop being afraid and start living—were woven beautifully throughout the present-day portion of this episode. In what was one of the show’s best uses of Snow in quite some time, her side plot was all about not giving up on yourself. Kudos to Ginnifer Goodwin for channeling what I’m sure is plenty of real-life new mommy exhaustion into her instant-classic tirade against Grumpy, Granny, and Co. It was funny, it was honest, and it was the most gumption Snow has shown in Storybrooke in ages. I was so proud of her for figuring out how to turn the generator on, and the “baby high five” was so cute I’m smiling just thinking about it.
My only complaint was in how removed Snow felt from what was going on with her own daughter. I know it was just a product of the different stories being told, but could no one get in touch with her to say Emma was dying? And why did she look so unconcerned when she saw Emma in such bad shape back at the loft? (I’m willing to believe Charming called her and filled her in on the Emma part—but not the Elsa part—before she got home.)
For as much as I would have liked to see Snow fussing over her daughter, one of the best things about this episode was that it showed us just how many people Emma has in her life who care about her and won’t give up on her, which is so important for a woman with a fear of abandonment as strong as Emma’s. And it was also important for Elsa to see that this group of people—this family—can be trusted not just because Charming knew Anna but because they’re so much like Anna in the way they love, support, and fight for a woman who Elsa is starting to see as a kindred spirit.
Emma and Elsa’s fast friendship was wonderful. I always want to see more female friendships on television, and this one has the potential to be so great for both characters. Elsa has never met anyone else with magic, and Emma has never met anyone else who doesn’t know what to do with the magic they were born with. They feel burdened with responsibilities they didn’t ask for as well as magic they struggle to control, and you could see both of these women—who are traditionally very reserved—soften immediately in the presence of someone who finally understands. Georgina Haig and Jennifer Morrison clicked immediately in this episode, and I think they’re going to continue to make great scene partners. I was especially impressed with Haig’s performance as Elsa saw Emma beginning to lose consciousness. She was so gentle and protective (channeling the “older sister” side of Elsa) as well as genuinely sorry for hurting another person who was only trying to help her.
Elsa and Emma share another trait beyond magic: They both spent so many years surviving but not living a full life because they thought it was safer to be alone. The “ice wall” symbol wasn’t the subtlest (but when has Once Upon a Time ever really been subtle in its metaphors?), but it was effective. It may have been a little heavy-handed to show Hook literally trying to chip away at the wall, but Colin O’Donoghue made it work. I believed Hook’s desperation, and my heart broke for him as he was once again rendered powerless to stop someone he loved from dying.
However, the mere memory of Anna was enough to get Elsa to melt part of the wall—because love thaws. And as soon as Emma got out of the makeshift ice palace, we saw her own walls melting more than perhaps ever before in the face of the love she was met with from both her father and Hook on the other side of the ice.
Emma has been slowly working on bringing her walls down, and she’s already so much more open than she was when we first met her. She wants Henry to hug her, she calls Charming “Dad,” and she’s honest with Elsa from the start about who she really is (the savior) and how she feels about that (completely unsure). However, we saw in the season premiere that she still has things to work through before those last walls can come down and she can be as open with Hook as she seems to genuinely want to be. But it appears that her near-death experience helped Emma embrace her father’s words and start living her life to the fullest instead of just surviving and hiding from things that scare her, which in this case means letting herself be vulnerable with Hook.
When I say Emma “embraced” her father’s words, I mean that quite literally. Her hug with Hook was a standout moment in an episode I loved from start to finish because of the total commitment both actors showed. O’Donoghue’s face was the picture of relief, and Morrison showed in such a visceral way how unguarded Emma was in that moment. All that mattered to both of them was holding on to each other and reassuring the other that they weren’t going anywhere, which is a big deal for two people who’ve lost so much and are so afraid to lose again.
Throughout “White Out,” we were reminded in plenty of ways that Hook has become a character worthy of the unprecedented vulnerability Emma showed him in this episode. His talk with Charming highlighted the idea that Emma isn’t a prize to him, and the progression of their relationship is about her choices and not just his feelings. And when they hugged, it was clear that Emma had chosen to do what Hook was doing when he called their adventures their dates: living and loving through the crises instead of just surviving each crisis alone.
I love a good hug, so to say that moment moved me is the understatement of the week. I also love little background moments of intimacy that develop a relationship in the details, so everything that happened between Emma and Hook back at the loft was perfect for me as a fan of subtle and realistic relationship progression. In fact, it might be my new favorite scene between those characters.
It was so sweet to see all of the most important men in Emma’s life, along her new friend Elsa, working to help get her warm. (Henry with the cocoa and Hook with the space heater were especially adorable.) And then as the scene progressed, it was beautiful to watch what Morrison and O’Donoghue were doing in the background—the way his hand never left her back or her shoulder, the way she leaned into him, the attentive way he looked at her. In those small details, we were able to see just how much Emma was opening herself up to being vulnerable with him and how much Hook treasured the moments she was giving him to show her how much he loves her.
Perhaps the sweetest little detail was when the camera lingered on their hands, and we saw Emma move to intertwine her fingers with Hook’s—initiating a new level of intimacy yet again. In that one small gesture, she reassured him that she wasn’t going anywhere, and she silently asked him not to go anywhere, either. It was another way for her to show she wasn’t going to push him away anymore; she was holding on tighter than ever. Emma shows her feelings in actions rather than words, and this action was so small but so monumental for a woman who still isn’t used to the kind of intimacy that she’s diving into with him.
When I think about why I loved seeing Hook take care of Emma at the end of this episode, I think about Emma’s past. She had a hard and lonely life, and I’m sure that meant not having many people dote on her when she was sick or hurt. So she learned to take care of herself, and that made her unsure of how to accept people wanting to take care of her (like when she shrugged off her mother wiping away her tears in Season Two’s “Lady of the Lake”). But in those moments with Hook, she let herself be completely taken care of and loved. She leaned into him and not away; she locked her fingers through his instead of brushing him off. It was the most open they’ve been with each other. Hook showed the full extent of his devotion (just look at his face when Charming talks about not giving up—he’s part of the family now). And Emma showed him how much she trusts him and wants him by her side, even when she’s in a position of total vulnerability. It was a beautifully simple moment of comfort and contentment (and character growth) amid the craziness, and that’s why it was so special.
Emma wasn’t the only one of Henry’s moms opening herself up to someone who isn’t giving up on her. I loved that this episode also showed Henry following in his family’s footsteps and not giving up on Regina. Their reunion was a genuinely sweet moment between mother and son, and I can’t wait to see how Henry’s support of Regina helps her as she works through her emotions as the season progresses.
The episode ended with a couple of good reveals. First of all, was anyone surprised that Rumplestiltskin obviously had a hand in what happened to Anna? He was acting very suspiciously when Charming and Hook came to him in his shop. And second, who else screamed and jumped off their couch as soon as they saw Elizabeth Mitchell? I knew she was joining the cast, but I didn’t expect to see her so soon. As a fan of hers from back in the days of Lost, I am so excited to see what she’ll do with his villainous role. Her exciting appearance was the perfect way to end a very strong episode.
I don’t think Charming has anything to worry about after seeing firsthand how Hook did everything and anything he could to try to save Emma. I couldn’t stop smiling seeing all their scenes at the end; the hugging, the hand holding, and how he was trying to warm her up.
I only noticed one Frozen reference (the cold one) but it’s interesting to see that there were more. As too how Charming and Kristoff know each other, maybe Kristoff traveled to The Enchanted Forest in the past? He did know that Misthaven’s other name was The Enchanted Forest.
I’m looking forward to seeing more of Emma and Elsa’s friendship. They really hit it off, it was sweet how protective Elsa started to become of Emma when she was freezing.
Thanks for the comment, and for reminding me that Kristoff knew that Misthaven was called the Enchanted Forest. I wonder if he did travel there in his past; there’s a lot of Kristoff backstory we don’t know.
And I’m with you 100% on being excited for Emma and Elsa’s friendship. 🙂
I loved almost everything in this episode!
Me too! 🙂
Loved this recap (and all of your recaps!). It summed up so perfectly why I’m rooting for Hook and Emma. Eternally grateful to the writers for starting Season 4 right after Season 3; I was afraid they’d skip all the “how Hook and Emma really got together” gems. I love that we get to see the story unfold, even more so than Snow and Charming.
Thank you! And I agree with you about getting to see every major step along the way for Hook and Emma; it makes for a really fulfilling experience for us as fans.
Once again, awesome recap for a great episode. I was little disappointed with last week, especially coming off of such a high from the season 3 finale (although I do understand a lot of what was happening last week was set up and we have to establish the course for the season, and I never feel like the episode is long enough to cover everything and everyone). That being said, I really enjoyed this week; I felt like they got back into the groove and got the show rolling again.
I like how they’ve been building Anna and Elsa, both as individual characters and how they’ve been incorporating those crucial concepts of familial love and hope that have been so important both in the Frozen film and the OUAT universe. I was concerned after S3 finale that they somehow would have manipulated Elsa into an evil character for the sake of creating conflict and am so happy that they stayed true to the original characterizations from the film. I do think it’s interesting that Elsa, while not evil, does sometimes do “bad” things, but out of anxiety and fear rather than malice. I feel like it harkens back a lot to Regina and her motivations as the Evil Queen; Regina isn’t actually evil, she was just very hurt and channeled that emotion the wrong way. I’m glad that Elsa and Emma are able to connect, I think Elsa needs all the support she can get just as Regina needed/needs help and support to deal with her issues.
I agree with everything you’ve already said about Emma and Hook, and this may be one of my favorite episodes for them. As much as I loved the kiss in episode 1, the hug felt so much more intimate. When Emma comes out of the cave, Hook and Charming each have an arm, but she deliberately turns and practically throws herself into Hook’s arms. And, just to make sure we’re all aware it was deliberate rather than the desperate act of hypothermic woman seeking warmth, all you have to do is look at her face and watch for the hand in his hair. She knows it’s Hook, and wants it to be Hook, and is glad it’s Hook. The interaction in the loft was perfect, just the right amount of hovering on Hook’s part, and all of the reciprocation I could have wanted from Emma. Small, intimate gestures and touches always feel more authentic to me than the big, splashy kiss scenes, and I think Colin and Jen both really nailed it in this episode.
I loved Snow’s outburst, it made me want to cheer. She’s not been my favorite character in the past, mostly because her unflinching optimism felt so contrived, so that scene made her feel so much more real for me.
I have a theory about Elizabeth Mitchell: In the original version of the fairytale, the Snow Queen was serious bad news. I think they’re setting us for an old-school vs. Disney new-school incarnation of the Snow Queen. I also think that maybe Rumple has dealt with the Mitchell version before and so when he encountered Elsa, he wanted to trap her because he a) thought she was going to be like the other, very evil queen or b) wanted to study her/learn about the powers in the event that he had another interaction with the original queen. I guess we’ll see.
Last thing, I loved Emma’s hypothermia makeup. I thought it was perfectly done.
I wondered if Mitchell might be the Snow Queen too! I thought that would be an interesting way to deal with the difference between Frozen and the old tales.
Thank you so much for the kind words and the thoughtful comment! I especially loved your theory about Rumplestiltskin meeting the Snow Queen before he met Elsa. It makes a lot of sense as to why he would trap Elsa, and I definitely think Elizabeth Mitchell is going to the Snow Queen from the original fairytale.
I also have to say that everything you said about Emma’s reaction to hug just gave me even more feelings about it, if that was possible. Like you, I tend to favor small moments of intimacy over bigger moments (not that I don’t like those, too), so this episode was absolutely perfect on the Emma/Hook front for me.
Ok I loved this episode! Georgina Haig as Elsa is just excellent – and after this episode I am beyond excited to see how they develop her friendship with Emma. It was great seeing Hook and Charming working together to free Emma – although I have to say I was really annoyed at how Rumple reacted when they went to him for help – he didn’t seem to want to help at all – I really don’t know what way Rumple is going to go this season.
Loved that Emma called David dad, and their little chat in the car before they got to the ice wall was great as well – Josh Dallas and Jennifer Morrison have such great chemistry – I really believe that David is her father. I now prefer their relationship than the Emma/Snow one – which even a year ago I never thought I’d say. I was also disappointed we didn’t see some reaction from Snow – she could have easily gone over to Emma’s side when she got into the apartment – I just hope we see more scenes with them in the future, as their relationship in S1 was hands down my favorite.
Finally just how brilliant was Jennifer Morrison in her scenes with Elsa – I really thought she was freezing to death. It’s great to see Emma get a friend who isn’t her parents or her boyfriend – it’s just a shame that Elsa will only be around for 11 episodes. The CaptainSwan scenes in this episode killed me – I just love how this relationship has been developed, their hug at the end and all their scenes back in the apartment were excellent. I know there has to be some drama coming up for Emma and Hook but if we keep getting good moments between them, well I will be very happy!
Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts with us, Joan! I’m glad to see I wasn’t the only one who was a little frustrated that this episode had no interaction between Snow and her nearly-frozen daughter. Like you, I loved their relationship in Season One, and I keep hoping some of that will work its way back into their relationship now.
And thank you for bringing up Rumplestiltskin. I thought his response was worrisome in regards to his pledge to be a better man in Bae’s memory. His son would have wanted him to do whatever he could have done to help Emma, but he acted as if her life didn’t matter at all to him—and he used that moment to rub salt in the obviously distressed Hook’s wounds with his comment about killing his girlfriend. I wish Belle would have stepped up and told him to be better than that, but it seems she just does that when it’s necessary for the plot.
I just adored this episode. There were things I didn’t like as much – Bo Peep wasn’t very interesting to me, other than her role in shepherding along the plot – but this episode featured so many fantastic relationship and character moments.
Staring in Misthaven/The Enchanted Forest. I just can’t get enough of Elizabeth Lail’s portrayal of Anna. She is an adorable human being so she captured the physical aspects of her character well, but she also gets the stubbornness and willingness to fight for something. Anna fought for Elsa in Frozen and that same spirit shows through in her lessons with Charming.
Moving on to my new favorite thing on TV, Elsa and Emma. I could watch these two forever. Partly because I’m seriously lacking in awesome female friendships at the moment but also because the characters make so much sense as friends and the chemistry between JMo and Georgina Haig is fantastic. I love how quickly Elsa worked through her fear and anxiety and let Emma in. They found something in common that no one else in their worlds can understand and clung to the possibility of finding a kindred spirit. These two have been through so much. They’ve been hurt and rejected and built walls (both real and metaphorical) around themselves but they were so open with each other. I don’t remember Emma ever warming up to someone so quickly and revealing so much about her feelings. Elsa never meant to harm Emma and all of her attempts to warm Emma stole my heart. From the hand-holding (which might have been my favorite) to the gentle way she touched her shoulder and tried to to comfort her, you can see the heart of who Elsa is. Under those walls, she cares so much. I cannot wait to see more of these two together.
This episode was the most I’ve liked Storybrooke Snow in ages and Ginny did such a great job with her exhausted rant and the cuteness of the baby high-five. Snow and Baby Neal together are adorable and Ginny is just the most precious person with a baby. I also would have liked more of her being motherly toward Emma, but this episode was so good and full that I can overlook it.
I really love what they’ve done with Emma and Hook so far. From the fact that she called him to help her and Charming at the ice wall to the playful flirting about the champagne to the way she threw herself into his arms after being freed and to that look on his face back at the apartment which I’m never getting over, it’s everything I want. Hook cares about her so much. He wants to spend time with her and take care of her and make sure she is protected and loved. My love of the character aside, that’s all I want for Emma. I want someone who will look at her like she’s the most precious thing he’s ever seen and be so grateful to have her safe and in his arms again. I want someone to believe in her and her magic. I want someone who will attempt to chisel through an ice wall with his hook because he needs to get to her. He fights for her and he finds her and I want this for her so much. On Emma’s side of the relationship, he’s the one she’s choosing. He’s her safe place now, her home and comfort when things aren’t going well. Her end of the hug after Elsa got them out was everything I want to see from her. I want him to be the one she instinctively goes to because she trusts him and feels safe with him. When her walls are down, her feelings for him are so clear. She can be vulnerable with him because she knows he’s not going anywhere.
And finally, we have the Charming Family feelings. I love how casually and easily Emma referred to Charming as Dad. It’s such a huge step for her in her relationship with her parents and there was no hesitation at all. I love that finding each other is no longer Snow and Charming (and sometimes Emma) specific. It’s not just a romantic catch phrase for them, it’s a family motto. They are all people who don’t give up on each other. They fight for each other and fight to be together. I really love that Henry heard that and immediately went to Regina. She needs someone to fight for her and tell her that she’s not alone. She has people who love her. The whole situation isn’t Robin’s fault but regardless of the circumstances and any understanding, it’s still an abandonment and Regina didn’t need any more of that. So I love that her son refuses to let her grieve and suffer alone. He’s there and determined to love her and be a part of her life.
You know I love everything you write, but this may be my favorite comment you’ve ever left on one of my posts. It started with a perfect play on words with the “shepherding the plot”/Bo Peep reference, and it only got better.
I have so little to say to all of your thoughts on the dynamics Emma is a part of at this moment because you have me overwhelmed with emotion, if I’m being honest. I am completely sold on her friendship with Elsa because we saw both of these guarded women immediately connect in a way they’ve never done with anyone else. And like you, I am loving the kind and gentle heart Georgina Haig is letting us see in Elsa right away. I love finding new characters to want to hug every time they’re onscreen, and Elsa is now one of those characters for me.
And I’m not even going to get started on all of the things you said about Emma and Hook because I’ll start actually crying and no one wants that. 😉 All I’ll say is that, as an Emma fan, this relationship is all I could have hoped for her to have from the moment we met her in the pilot.
I’m not a fan of the Charmings. And I’m not a “FROZEN” fan. So, it was hard to me to love this episode . . . except for the Snow White rant. Loved that. Why did Rumpelstiltskin refuse to help? It’s odd that no one has commented on this.
I think Rumple’s lack of action was because he wasn’t sought to help solve the problem. They were just trying to figure out the missing piece – the necklace. Rumple’s also preoccupied with the sorcerers hat and has never been a character to proactively assist when there wasn’t a vested interest/gain in him doing so. He’s obviously connected, specifically to Anna but he wouldn’t automatically share that in the current circumstance, especially if we presume he has something to hide and he’s responsible for her disappearance in the Enchanted Forest. I think we haven’t even touched the iceberg around what that entanglement is and I don’t believe it was the point of this particular episode. Which for me was about establishing Elsa as a friend not a foe and connecting Anna to the Charmings.
I’m sorry you didn’t really enjoy the episode, but I am happy you also enjoyed Snow’s perfect rant. I think we can all agree that she needs more scenes like that one.
As for Rumplestiltskin, I think he refused to help because he knows what’s going on and is at least somewhat responsible for Anna being missing. I’m eager to see how all of this plays out and what it all means for his goal of trying to be a better man in his son’s memory (which we already know from the end of the last episode is off to a rocky start).
On first thought I wasn’t as over the moon with the episode, but still a lot to like! I think I was expecting an Elsa and Emma conversation in the ice to take a larger portion of the episode when in reality it felt like the episode was more about Charming and Anna’s hitting it off friendship. But then again perhaps Once is one step ahead of me, understanding that Elsa and Emma are not made to hit it off and become best friends immediately, or to be capable in believing in a stranger like Anna and Charming are, even if the latter at this point doesn’t know it as well. Still, I have to admit the business and action-orientated plot surrounding Emma and Elsa wasn’t my favorite and that the largely dialog between them discussing who there are, isn’t some I’m rushing to revisit, unlike ones in other great Espenson episodes
I’m not sure how I feel yet about how they made Charming drink from a flask in “The Tower” after seeing this backstory, nonetheless this is an excellent pairing to that episode and they’ve developed him well from the start of S3 onward considering in most forms it’s usually hardest to make the most good hero interesting. They’ve understood they can tap into the more vulnerable human side underneath him and one who at times can doubt he’s still a hero.
Henry’s scenes were some of my favorite of the episode. I think it’s on point that as he gets older Henry would begin receding a bit emotionally, since he hasn’t had the easiest history himself in terms of close relationships. Henry has abandonment issues all over his bloodline (add another in Charming this episode) so problems with thinking Regina is checking out on him, makes sense. When he goes back to Regina, like Charming when deciding to take on Bo Peep or most times after, it’s not because Henry is perfect in terms of belief, but because he can will himself to take a leap for that moment.
Snow’s plot was a lot of fun and I appreciate that they’re skilled enough to make a C plot about Snow trying to turn electrical power not only entertaining, but also relevant from a story perspective. Making Snow the mayor is a perfect choice.
Anna and Charming’s sword fighting was a lot of fun. Bo Peep’s campiness and how easily Charming took out her guards was a little ho hum for me, though I did love her in the butcher shop. I love the idea of Anna being this believer who can see things in people, however I’m wondering if that allows them to put the self doubts and emotional flaws in her that makes Once’s characters great. I wonder if Anna and Belle will spend time together this season because that seems to be her most similar counterpart in Storybrooke, the Emma to her Elsa so to speak.
Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts with us! I can see where this episode would feel a little disappointing if you were expecting more dialogue between Emma and Elsa. However, I do think that’s coming soon, and I liked what we got so far. For two people who are very reserved by nature, I thought they opened up to each other remarkably quickly—especially Emma (although thinking she was going to die might have had something to do with that).
The point you brought up about Henry and his family history of abandonment issues was great character analysis. It makes perfect sense for him to be worried about Regina shutting him out, and I think part of him was really looking forward to developing a more solid relationship with her now that his memories were back and she was in a good place. Watching that seemingly fall apart has to break his heart.
As soon as I saw the hug between Emma and Hook, I thought of you and your reviews and was sure you would put it in your post. And you did. 🙂 I loved that hug so much and I couldn’t stop staring at them when they were back at the loft. It was sweet and wonderful to see both of them so affectionate with each other. I loved the intertwining fingers moment too. It also struck me how comfortable Emma was not only allowing Hook to take care of and comfort her, but also having him do that with other people around. Granted it is her family and they know about them but I think that’s something she wouldn’t have done before. She’s being more vulnerable and open than she’s ever been. I wholeheartedly agree with your enthusiasm about Emma and Elsa’s newfound friendship. I’ve wanted Emma to have a female friend she can relate to and it looks like Elsa might just be that person.
And now on to Charming. I loved Charming from the beginning but there have been times in the past couple of seasons, I’ve thought they portrayed his character as too perfect. There have been some episodes where we’ve seen more of his struggles and fears like the Rapunzel one. But I’ve always wanted to know more about him. Or like you said what makes him tick. So it was really great to see this backstory about him. He wasn’t always brave and unwilling to give up on people. I do think he had it inside but it’s nice to see how that developed. I also loved his protective dad moment with Hook. Anyways, agree with everything you said about Anna. I thought all the Frozen references were great. And I’m excited to see what Elizabeth Mitchell will be like as the Snow Queen.
Thanks so much for the very thoughtful comment! There was no way I was leaving that hug out of my review—hugs in general are basically my favorite thing in the world. 😉 I loved what you said about how open Emma was about accepting Hook’s affections even with so many people around. There was such a beautiful level of comfort between them in that last scene, and I loved that her parents got to witness that.
As always awesome writting, you make me.proud to be a fangirl.
That has to be one of the nicest things anyone has ever said about my writing—thank you so much!
First, can I just say I love how joyful this review is. I believe attitudes are contagious, and I love that this is a place where we can enjoy the positive aspect of this show. Its not a perfect show by any means, but that doesnt mean we cant still celebrate the things that the show does well. And yes to everything you said about this show not taking itself to seriously. Its pretty much the main reason this show works for me. Emma’s reactions and usually my reactions.
There are some episodes that you can just tell right away are going to be divisive, and I feel like this is one of those episodes. I always talk a lot about how much a love a “balanced” episode. Jane Espenson usually excels at them, and while this episode had great theme cohesiveness, it was a bit lacking on the character balance. I think this is less of a fault of the individual writers at this point and more an overall show approach they started in 3B where each episode focuses on a couple main characters while the others take a back seat. I think this is one of the reasons I loved the Neverland arc so much, because while each character was fighting their own internal struggle, there overall mission was the same. Now we have Regina who wants to change the book and rewrite her story, Rumple with the magician’s hat, and now Elsa looking for her sister. I am not a huge fan of this recent pattern of segregation, but it is what it is, and I think I am just going to have to learn to be patient with the progression of each character’s storyline and hope everything weaves together eventually.
While I thought this episode moved a bit slowly in the middle, by the last 15 minutes I feel like everything came together for a big payoff. I was not expecting such a huge breakthrough on the Emma/Hook front, so that was a wonderful surprise. I will come back to that later.
Elsa and Anna continue to be 100% perfect. I loved the exchange between Anna and David when Anna tried to convince David he was strong – “you dont know that” – “I hope it!”.
I also loved the exchange between Emma and Elsa in the ice cave when Emma admitted she was a savior, but “I’m still not sure what the hell that means”. I have always been really interested in Emma’s savior title. It seems like her main role as savior was to break the curse, but she still continues to hold on to that title and feel the weight of it long after the original curse was broken. The fact that the storybook assigned that savior role to her and the prominence the book is bound to play this season, I am really interested to see if this is explored more.
Loved seeing the snow queen at the end. It was a great villain intro and I am glad they brought her in now. With Anna and Elsa firmly integrated into the story with this episode and the season themes introduced, its time to establish the real external conflict.
I also loved the scene with Regina and Henry. There was something so honest and innocent about Henry saying “I miss my room” that gave me serious feelings for the kid (Jared Gilmore was really good in this ep, props to him). Yes, it was wrong for Regina to shut him out (and what was with the note via raven BEFORE the power went out? Is Regina in such dire mourning that she canceled her phone service?) but I understand the desire to want to shirk all your responsibilities and connections and feel sorry for yourself when life seems unfair. And its important to have people in your life that dont let you do that to yourself. I just wish we got the Snow/Regina cut scene in the full episode. I think it would have tied things together quite nicely for both Regina and Snow’s storylines, and I think the could have found the time trimming elsewhere.
But now on to Hook and Emma. All of Hook’s reactions were wonderful but completely expected, and I loved his statement to Charming about their relationship being both his and Emma’s decision (and again, not surprised at all), but what killed me was Emma’s reaction. I thought maybe we would get Killian giving Emma his coat, or something else chivalrous once she was free, but the clinging to him for dear life, the hand in his hair, Killian carrying her back to the truck? Totally not expecting it. And then back in the loft. The way she interlaces her fingers with his? The way he goes and grabs the heater the second the power goes back on and Emma gives him a little appreciative smile (“my 21st century man”)? The way she is holding on to his brace with her other hand because one just isnt enough? I just loved all of this. I love this because now that they have moved passed Emma’s initial fear, they can really start progressing. I see Killian taking this as a sign that he needs to start integrating himself into Storybrooke (which will start with the wardrobe change), but I in no way think this is going to be an easy transition for him. I think he is going to question his own worthiness of being with Emma (“a one handed pirate with a drinking problem”) and he is going to question where he fits into the town. And now that Emma has made this step, she is not going to give up on him, and I cant wait to see it.
Wow, wonderful review Shauna!
I think Bo Peep is the main source of my problem with this episode. I don’t mind the idea of introducing a fairy tale character who’s antagonist because they’re just in it for the money and bling bling (Bo isn’t necessarily evil) I just don’t know if this was the right episode to put her in, with the present day scenes probably having as much action-packed plot material as Once should ever have. Making the Charmings farm get threatened by a nameless thug who doesn’t take up much energy in the episode, may have been the cleaner way to handle it.
I don’t know why I bothered to comment. I could have simply co-signed onto to yours because all I did was nod through it. Your impressions were spot on to my own. As you will see below, because I make a habit of commenting before I read everyone elses. I loved that you wrote: Its not a perfect show by any means, but that doesnt mean we cant still celebrate the things that the show does well.
SO TRUE! The reason I steer clear of most comments sections and Tumblr is because there is little filter for appreciating effort and the art of making the show. I love that the show get’s its own joke. It makes it all the more enjoyable when our characters see the absurdity of some of what transpires. I love TV for the journey I get to take with a set of characters and OUAT takes me on that journey. I don’t have to agree and/or like every plot point to enjoy the ride. I wish more folks on a variety of shows got that. This show isn’t of our creation and it isn’t ours to dictate. It is ours to celebrate the things we enjoy within it.
And while I will never ship Hook and Emma as hard as you, Heather and Katie I love watching it unfold vicariously through you all.
First of all, in the middle of a very stressful day (Why must “real work” be a thing?) your first paragraph put the biggest smile on my face and reaffirmed for me exactly why I do what I do here. So thank you for that. 🙂
I totally understand feeling like the episode was unbalanced—because it was. But because the balance was in favor of learning more about a character whose backstory we know so little about (Charming) I was okay with letting other characters take a backseat this week. It seems from what I’ve read of the episode description for next week that all of the major players will be back in the spotlight, which makes me happy in terms of characters but a little worried again in terms of integrating all of those disparate plots together.
Count me as another person who hopes that Emma’s comments about being the savior means we’ll be exploring that a lot more this season. I always felt like the townspeople and even her family played a big role in her continuing to hold onto that title because they don’t just look at her as a sheriff; they look to her and often refer to her as the savior even now. I’m interested to see how Emma’s feelings about being the savior continue to play out in a season that seems to be focusing on defining yourself on your own terms instead of how you feel you’re fated to be seen.
You and Heather are both killing me with the Hook/Emma feelings today! Like you, I was expecting a little moment of Hook giving her his coat or something like that and maybe even a little hug when she was safe. I never expected all of the intimacy and openness we were given from Emma. And you know I love a pleasant surprise.
When I first watched this episode last night, I wasn’t as enthralled as I was with it on second viewing. I realize it is because I have yet to connect with Elsa and my lack of connection to Frozen as whole. However, that said, Anna’s story with Charming went a long way in bringing me around and perhaps now that Elsa is ‘in the fold’ I will get to see facets of her beyond her quest to find Anna and perhaps the Snow Queen will help move that along. I agree with you that Snow’s story felt disconnected from the rest of the story. But I appreciated that it re-established Snow’s role in the show. But more on that in a moment.
In the capable hands of Epenson we were given one of the things that Once Upon a Time does so marvelously which is turn traditional fairy tales on their ears, not in the flow of the story but in the drive and origin of the characters that are a part of the show. This episode was wonderful because it took the established Charming/David we’ve come to know and gave us the depth I’ve always felt he lacked (and that Josh Dallas was compensating for) within other people’s plots. Meeting David the shepherd gave us insight to the man behind Charming. Charming, as the story tells us is a prince and the embodiment of the perfect man. Strong, heroic, brave and noble. To learn that Charming is actually flawed is something we’ve discovered through glimpses. This episode opened up the fact that Charming while always noble, lacked valor. Wanting to do good and protect those he loves and being willing to do so with the potential of failure requires a different level of belief. And as you so wonderfully pointed out the beauty of it is that it comes through Anna’s belief in goodness. She doesn’t give Charming his direction, she helps ground his sense of purpose. It’s a great lesson from someone we already believe in. We’ve watched Emma struggle to not be defined by her past. It makes her bond to Charming even more logical when we watch that he is simply trying to be more than his own. That Charming and Emma share a root in coming from humble, broken and uncertain beginnings makes their bond all the more powerful for me. I also adore that Once Upon a Time has rooted the traditional fairy tale hero’s strength in the lessons of the women who’ve impacted his life from all the different facets of that life.
Again, while I am having a hard time connecting to Anna and Elsa, your enthusiasm and perspective helps. I appreciate that while we saw very little of Henry this episode, his belief and optimism bookends the episode. It creates a wonderful parallel to the Elsa/Anna story line. Anna is the new Henry, the truest believer. Henry’s been through a lot between Peter Pan and the forgotten year on the heals of Neal’s death. I love that at the beginning of the episode he’s determined and then really crestfallen when Regina’s wall goes up even for him. I loved that David’s proclamation of who they are as a family restores his determination. He believes he can get through to Regina when she’s isolated herself, just as Elsa has in the past (and in the physical ice structure with Emma). That breakthrough is a wonderful reminder to Henry of who he is and more importantly who he is for his mother. I also enjoyed that when the show first started it was Henry who was making Emma believe and he has once again stepped into that role for Regina. I so deeply appreciate Henry’s devotion to Regina and loved the teenager throw away line of “and I miss my room” in desperation to have a reason to keep yelling through the door to get her to open it.
And finally we get Snow once again being Snow. I understand that Ginny Goodwin’s pregnancy threw a monkey wrench into her role in the latter half of last season. It was good to find her returned to form quickly this season and in complete lockstep with all that had happened. I wish that the scene between Snow and Regina had made it into the episode cut because it gave what I felt was necessary context to Charming’s back story. It gave us the connection of Snow and Charming as the two who are determined and driven by the same valor at their very core. That Snow had to step into an unwanted (and unintended consequence) of the new curse was a great way to re-establish just how tenacious Snow is in the scheme of things. I love that we see her completely unravel because it reminded me of the very real struggle you go through with a newborn of remembering your own identity as your life is wrapped around this young helpless life you are in charge of 24/7. Add the very real exhaustion of newborns and we get one of my all time favorite lines from the show — “I am starting to get why Regina was evil…You have survived your entire lives without light bulbs. Buy a flashlight!”
That would have been my favorite moment if not for the giddy surprise that appeared in the form of Elizabeth Mitchell who in 30 seconds of screen time made me scream from my couch, wish it were next Sunday and even more excited at the prospect of who I think may be my most favorite evil character yet to blow into Once Upon a Time.
On the topic of Anna one thing I appreciated on second viewing is you can KIND of see how he’s not a “perfect” believer either – for example there’s the “If you don’t I’ll just… be on my way” moment when talking about Charming meeting her at the barn, which is spoken with a resignation that he may not come. She’s also a little surprised when Charming saves her instead of expecting it. I also think she jumps to the conclusion a little quickly early on that Charming likes to give up and/or is cowardly. It helps show believing in everyone is hard work for Anna too, just like Charming believing in himself and as a hero is something he had to work for every day after Anna helped show him the way. Anna who also lost her parents and was isolated like Elsa so she has that mark as well. I suspect that for the great work Anna does believing in others, she may not as consistently successful always believing in herself, or having the belief that when she tries to believe in people like Charming, that it’ll get through (thus the “… be on my way” moment).
We are going to have so much fun this Sunday with all things Elizabeth Mitchell. 😉
I think we’re already starting to see glimpses of who Elsa is beyond her quest for Anna through her concern for and instant connection with Emma. It was brief in this episode, but I think that connection and friendship will go a long way towards helping people warm up to her (pun very much intended).
I absolutely loved the conclusion that you came to about Charming and Emma’s bond being rooted in humble beginnings and uncertain childhoods. Both of them know what it’s like to live with the hope that your family could be better or different than what it is—only to have those hopes dashed time and again. I think Charming’s past with his own father puts his guilt over his role in Emma going through the wardrobe into an even sharper perspective. And it helps me understand why it’s Charming who seems to know exactly how to treat Emma and not Snow—he’s the parent who shares his daughters scars of a bad and broken childhood. Snow knew she was loved by her mother and father when they died. Both Charming and Emma lived with the belief that they weren’t enough—for Emma it was not being enough to make her parents keep her; for Charming it was not being enough to make his father stop drinking.
And YES to loving that Charming has been influenced, shaped, and guided by a series of strong women. As if I needed another reason to adore him.
Your paragraph on Snow was absolute perfection. As someone who has adored this character from the pilot and mourned the loss of the backbone that made me fall in love with the show’s take on this princess, this scene meant the world to me.
I really enjoyed this episode and your review of it was once again spot on.
I took Regina sending a message by bird as her way of sending a one way message. If she had called, she may have had to explain herself. If she’d texted she either have to ignore any responses or respond.
I liked the deleted scene because it would have definitely filled in a few gaps re Mary Margaret and Regina’s story, but by removing the scene I think it made Regina’s scene with Henry at the end much more poignant when she opened the door for him.
Loved Hook and Charming working together to save Emma. I know some people didn’t like the lack of response on Rumple’s part re Emma’s predicament because she is Henry’s mother. But I thought the show didn’t really delve into what Rumple could do to help beyond melting the ice and Emma because Charming figured out who Anna was and decided to just find her instead. Also loved them going after Bo Peep at the butcher shop. I know the show tends to focus on a major villain but I wouldn’t mind seeing them also focus on some of the smaller villains that were brought over with the curse. What if Bo Peep was still doing something illegal in Storybrooke? Maybe the sheriff’s department would need to investigate?
I agree that Hook and the ice chipping was a little heavy-handed, but I just took it for the equivalent of banging on the wall trying to get someone’s attention. And despite his panic Hook still worked with David and went to see Rumple and Bo Peep. I did wonder if we would have seen Hook show as much panic as he did at the wall if he had been with anyone other David.
As for Mary Margaret not knowing what is going on with Emma – I’m just going to assume the ice wall that took out the power also messed with the cell towers. Which is why Grumpy, Granny and Happy all ended up knocking on her door rather than calling. And the reason for them using walker talkies instead of cell phones to talk back and forth.
I really enjoyed Emma and Henry’s relationship in this episode. His relationship with Emma is very different than his relationship with Regina and I think they are interesting contrasts.
Loved Hook telling Emma that he was counting the snow monster as their first date and the ice wall as the second. Emma stated in season 3 that she never got a day off, that what she wanted wasn’t in the cards for the savior. And then there’s Hook telling her to embrace the quiet moments but also telling her that if they are going to spend their time chasing snow monsters that was okay with him as well because it meant spending time with her. Hook told David that what he and Emma become was as much up to her as it was him. He not only gave Emma agency in the relationship but stated that it was an equal partnership. They both make the decisions because they are in it together.
It wasn’t subtle that when Elsa was able to make the whole in the ice, Hook was the first person Emma saw. The proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. It was amazing to see Emma, who is not much of a hugger, basically throw herself into Hook’s arms. We’ve seen Emma hug Henry and her parents, but this was a different type of hug. I don’t think Emma has ever clung to someone like she did Hook in that scene. I am really hoping that the comfort level we saw with Hook and Emma at the end of the episode continues throughout the season. Even though we didn’t get Emma voicing a lot of her feelings re Hook I think that actions speak much louder for both of them. Of course now that Emma is opening up to Hook even more now is probably the calm before the storm when we find out whatever her issue is (and I still think its her magic).
Really looking forward to the snow queen story especially since her story is suppose to be more tied to Emma than to Elsa which I wasn’t expecting.
Finally having seen the promo pics for next week, I really hope we get to see Hook and Elsa bonding. Out of all the main characters, Hook is the only one who has a sibling that he was close to. And much of Hook’s life was defined by before and after Liam died, just like Elsa’s was defined by before and after Anna got hurt. I just think that these two characters could really relate to one another as siblings.
Thanks so much for sharing your articulate thoughts with us! I especially loved your take on Elsa and Hook’s connection as the only people in Storybrooke who we know have siblings (or at least were close to their siblings—since David never knew James). It’s also interesting that Elsa is the older sister and Hook was the younger brother; those dynamics always come into play when people interact, and I’d love to see those two characters develop a friendship, too.
I liked Henry and Emma’s dynamic in this episode, too. Jared Gilmore did a great job in this one.
Finally, I just want to say that I echo your feelings on Hook calling his adventures with Emma “dates.” It’s so important for Emma to see that what matters to him is spending time with her. This is her life—adventures and crises and only a few quiet moments to cherish—and not only does he understand that, he’s ready to dive into each adventure right along with her, making the best of it.
I watched the episode really late again this week, but once again, it was worth the wait.
Some of the many things I loved: how easy it is to believe that Emma is David’s daughter (the what babies dream about exchange); the easy way she called him Dad; finally getting the “what are your intentions?” talk with Hook (I’ve been waiting for David to give him the talk, and Hook’s response was excellent, and I think subsequent events made it very clear (again) how much Hook cares for Emma, and I felt like David almost pushed Emma into Hook’s arms, or at least didn’t expect Emma to want to be comforted by anyone else after being freed from the snow cave); the embraces, the touches, everything about Hook caring for Emma back in the loft; the fact that Bo Peep was a mob boss/warlord; Charming’s hair (the picture still looks awful, but it kind of worked for me in the episode!); Charming’s father back story (a person I had never given a thought to, but as soon as it was revealed it felt like “of course” – and as you said, how interesting that Charming is succeeding in being different while Rumple and Bae just kept perpetuating the same patterns – once again showing that you can choose what kind of person to be); all the strong women in Charming’s life; the fact that it was Anna who taught him how to wield a sword (I feel like Henry might appreciate that, assuming he has seen the movie); Henry getting so TALL and his voice going funny (aw!); Snow as a fed-up exhausted mother telling the dwarves to shut up… and probably so many other things.
I missed most of the Frozen references. Totally didn’t think about Hook LITERALLY chipping away at Emma’s wall. I watched Elsa more carefully this week, and noticed what you said last week about how well she plays the anxious, out of control aspect of her character.
I was starting to think that Regina wasn’t even going to be in this episode. I’m sure a lot of people were not happy, but I’m glad they didn’t try to pack any more story lines into this episode. I’m sure Rumple’s involvement will be laid out very soon, and Regina’s story will probably dominate a future episode. That’s OK with me, if that’s how they think the story can best be told.
The captain swan story line was so wonderful, and I agree that all the hugging, holding, and tender looks were possibly better than a kiss. I could watch hours of Emma falling into Hook’s arms and him cuddling her as she warmed up… I would have put them on a sofa so he could sit behind her and envelope her in warmth – he’s got to be a human furnace! 🙂
It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who could watch hours of Emma and Hook hugging and cuddling and might actually like that better than a kiss. There’s just something so quietly beautiful about how easy that new level of intimacy and vulnerability seemed for both of them.
All of the details you mentioned made me smile. And I’m with you on being okay with Regina and Rumplestiltskin being in the background for at least this one hour. It allowed us to focus on a character who—for being a main member of the cast—was in need of some backstory. And it made the story wonderfully focused and cohesive.
So much captain swan in this episode, I love it!
I loved it too! 🙂
Hi, I haven’t read all the replied yet so I’m sorry if I will repeat some
Great review Katie! you wrote so beautifully what I felt about this episode 🙂 I loved this episode so much, it’s goes straight to my top 5 (Yeah I’m CS, hard), my 5 cents..
They manage to integrate the Frozen cast so naturally with the story, it makes so much sense to have Anna in the EF adventure and Elsa in the emotional arc in Storybrooke, Georgina and Elizabeth do amazing job! amazing!
Up until now there was barely a physical interaction between Emma and Hook, even in their kisses they barely touch, I think it was done on purpose because physical touch is a huge barrier for Emma to cross after I imagine having pretty much none for years. in this episode this was broken, and with no words we saw exactly how Emma feels for Hook.
I’m sure after 3.12 most CS were dissapointed that the hug was cut, I know I was but looking at it now it was the right move because if the hug hadn’t been cut there wouldn’t have been this huge impact to the hug is this episode and what it means to Emma, Hook and both of them as a couple, it was so strong and if that wasn’t enough (it never is) the rest of their touching back home made it stronger, Loved it so much! just like David and Hook said to her- to find the good moments in all the bad and craziness 🙂
One thing that bugged the hell out of me in this episode and it might be unpopular opinion but it was Belle, You could see that Rumple just didn’t want to help (cos I’m positive he has something to do with Anna disappearance), David and Hook have no leverage over him, they are in disadvantage cos he is the Dark One, not to mention the feud with Hook, but Belle is in a different position and she was standing there doing nothing, she decided to take the indifferent attitude cos this is her way of avoiding who Rumple really is…her silence to even try to think / convince him to see if there is more they can do to help made me so mad cos Emma always always helped her! I remember her line in 3b that she loved everything in Rumple even the Dark side of him and it echoes so hard that I blame her as much as I blame him, if anything she isn’t making him be a better person, it’s the opposite – he makes her be worse, but my friend just told me to let it go (pun intended) and focus on the rest of this ep jaja 🙂
Can’t wait for next week
Thank you for the kind words! And thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. 🙂
I really liked what you said about touch being a big deal for Emma because she grew up seemingly without a lot of affection and after Neal only had one-night stands. It’s probably the same for Hook, who also grew up without parental affection and then seemed to shut down any affectionate part of him after Milah died. The intimacy shown in their hug and their interactions in the loft was a big deal for both of these characters because it isn’t something either is used to showing or receiving.
I’m also wondering about Belle’s role in that scene between Rumplestiltskin, Charming, and Hook. I would have thought she might have encouraged him to help, but maybe the fact that he said he would kill Emma in the process kept her from asking him to do more to help. It did still stick out to me as a moment where I wished Belle would have encouraged him to be better, even if he still ended up not helping them—because he totally had something to do with Anna’s disappearance.
I thought of a connection that I didn’t realize this morning between Charming and the Bo Peep storyline… Like his father, Bo Peep is a hopeless addict. But her addiction is riches, power and well, herself.
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