Monday, October 7, 2013

Once Upon A Time 3.02 Review: Abandonment Issues

If any of you have yet to watch the episode of Once Upon A Time that aired last night, entitled ‘Lost Girl’, then now would be the time to do so. As always, below may include spoilers pertaining to the aforementioned episode. THIS REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS! You’ve been warned.
Not a bad episode, compared to last week’s premiere. I’m not too fond of the scenes that don’t focus on the characters I most like and most believe are deserving of onscreen time, but I got through most of the scenes otherwise. Could be because I tend to be a selfish person, and I want what I want, but I really wished there’d been more Emma. I know the episode had a lot of focal points surrounding her, but I still really want another Emma focused episode soon, with some more scenes to enlighten us on her life before Storybrooke. Although, I’m not really too sure how much there is, other than the whole giving up of her son, and kind of how she came to that decision, even though that’s been implied to be because Neal abandoned her.
Unsurprisingly, my favourite scenes from this episode were anything between Emma and Hook, and Emma and Pan. Just the subtle chemistry interspersed between Hook and Emma gets me incredibly excited, particularly because when dealing with a series based around fairytale characters that have their one true loves, love triangles aren’t a big thing. I know there’s the whole thing with Mulan liking Philip, but he so obviously loves Aurora – who is a terrible actor, by the way – so her feelings are pretty much moot. But these feelings between Hook and Emma, and Emma and Neal are kind of love triangle territory, which a lot of people don’t like, but the series isn’t based around it, like The Vampire Diaries, so there’s the ability for a ripe amount of stories. People have made a valid point about Neal being Emma’s first love, and that he really didn’t try to find her after he learned the spell had broken, but there are still feelings there despite this.
Once again I’m going to commend Robbie Kay for his rendition of Pan. His scenes with Emma were also really one of my favourites, because he is just a terrific actor. The boy acts circles around the rest of the cast. I may be reading too much into things, but I caught vibes of him being attracted to Emma. Though, that could also be due to his weird fetish of collecting lost children, and Emma still very much feels like that lost girl that was orphaned, as verified by the title of the episode. Either way, I would still very much like more scenes between the two, because they play off each other rather well.
The other acting I need to praise for this episode is Jennifer Morrison’s. Her performance as Emma in this episode was very good. She seems to be one of the stronger actors in this series. Sometimes her acting can fall short, but I didn’t see that here. I particularly liked her rather dry speaking while she stared at the blank parchment with her hands on either side of her face. She’s extremely good at playing the hardened, tough girl character, and I really like getting to see that side of her. Damaged characters are a favourite of mine.
As always, Colin O’Donoghue was wonderful as Hook. Is it weird that two of my favourite characters in this series are both played by British actors with their natural accents, or do the Brits just tend to have better actors? Either way, I adore this man, I’m so glad he’s one of the series regulars. I wasn’t so gung ho when he was first bumped up last season after a short period of time, but every time he isn’t all about his hatred of Rumplestiltskin, the man is a wonderful actor. Maybe it has something to do with his sardonic sense of humour…
Wouldn’t it be awesome if, by the time they all got to Henry, that he was so different, another actor had to play him? Maybe that’s just hopeful thinking, but the actor that plays him is unbelievably terrible. He was okay in the pilot, but afterwards, going through a growth spurt, he just got so much worse. If only he could just be killed off. I was honestly just so glad he wasn’t in this episode. He’s not bad when he’s just acting normal, but whenever he has to play some form of heightened emotion, he’s genuinely awful. And that really is any heightened emotion.
While hair extensions don’t always look good and realistic, and the costumes for the characters in present day time aren’t that great, this series does always seem to dress the Queen in gorgeous costumes in the Fairytaleland That Was. Okay, Snow White usually has pretty cool costumes too, but it’s the Queen’s that takes the cake.
I’m just going to ask, what was it with Rumplestiltskin this week? Just so they can throw Belle in (who for some reason has an Australian accent when a) she’s supposed to be French, and b) none of her kingdom has the same accent) they have Rumplestiltskin imagine her up to work through his problems. I mean, really, what was the point of that? Just to have Belle kicking around, make sure we know she hasn’t gone anywhere? She didn’t really add anything to the scene, because I was just struggling to figure out whether she was actually there half the time. The only interesting thing he did was cut off his shadow. But what was it with bringing the dagger? You know it can kill you, so why bring it with you? Does it have to come with you? Is there some rule that it has to be in the same realm as you? I just don’t know.
I have to say I was pretty bored with the Charming and Snow White scenes, they didn’t really add much that hadn’t been seen before. It also didn’t seem that necessary to randomly bring Giancarlo Esposito into this episode for that exchange between him and the Queen, when he’s so much better over on Revolution, where the writing is actually good. The whole Excalibur thing had me confused there for a minute, but then it turned out to be fake, but what was the whole deal with having it in the opening title when it wasn’t even there?
My rating: 6.5 out of 10.

Best Lines:
This exchange: “Don’t hold your breath.” – Regina. “What’s that supposed to mean?” – Emma.
“I’m winning you over, I can feel it.” – Hook, referring to Charming.
“You said it, not me.” – Grumpy to Charming, the best part being the way he said it to him.

Okay, I’m going to take a little break, and then go and watch Revenge. Check back in a little over an hour for that.

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