Sunday, May 19, 2013
Once Upon A Time Season 2 Overview
Once Upon A Time's sophomore season ended last Sunday and since I'm a big fan of this amazing show, I thought I'd give an overview on the season and tell you my thoughts :) (P.S. - I have another new post below :D).
So, after the hype of last summer, did season 2 live up to what I'd been anticipating? Well, yes, and no.
First off, I LOVED season 2! I can't decide which season I like better, in fact. Season 1 had more of a magical feel and I really enjoyed how the season progressed and the characters developed. Season 2, I'd have to say, had more action and suspense(though a lot of it was spoiled since I heard a lot of the rumors and theories on Facebook fanpages and Tumblr) and, most importantly, it had my top three favorite characters in it more, which was great! :D However, I was slightly disappointed that they didn't do as much with my second favorite character Belle as they could have(though I think they will next season, so YAY!). Even though Belle wasn't in it as much as I'd hoped she would be, she still had so many great moments(which I'll explain below), and I was very happy to see, now that I look back, how far she and Rumplestiltskin have come since episode one. I think both have matured and their relationship has grown even closer and better now after all they've been through (And THAT is how you write a good romance, dear E.L. James and Stephanie Meyer! Don't come back until you watch the show!*shoves both authors into the room to watch it* Mwhahahahaha XD).
As a whole, I think season 1 had more consistent episodes(a lot like season 1 of TCW), while season 2, though more exciting, seemed a little scattered and stretched(though it did get better after the biggest hiatus).
Broken, the season's opening, to me, was the perfect start to the second season! I know a lot of fans didn't like it that much, but I loved it! It had everything I wanted to see- Rumbelle moments, Snow and Charming(David) reuniting with their daughter for the first time since she was a baby, Emma confronting Mr. Gold(and saying she wanted to punch him in the face), Regina and the Charmings working together, and, of course, the awesome twist at the end. My favorite parts of the episode, I remember, were all the Rumplestiltskin/Belle scenes(which were, as always, amazingly acted by the best actors on the show), and the Charming fighting off the dementor...I mean, wraith, with brooms lit on fire XD. The only thing about the episode I didn't find that interesting was FTL part, but it was okay enough that it didn't take away from the other awesome aspects of it(and the ending scene in FTL was epic!)
Oh, and Belle stormed out and walked out during a storm, with debris blowing around, and a dementor on the loose..in high heels (told you she was cool XD; not that, I like high heels, but it was still pretty funny).
It definitely satisfied me :D :).
We Are Both:
After the season's stellar opening, this episode slightly disappointed me. I did really enjoy the scene where Charming reveals to Mr. Gold/Rumplestiltskin that no one can leave town without their memories(and after Charming leaves, Rumplestiltskin proceeds to break the glass since he now can't leave to find his son). I also liked Charming trying to get his family back with the hat and him having to deal with a hectic town XD. I didn't particularly have any interest in the TFL aspect of it, so I guess that was part of it as well.
Lady of the Lake:
While not my favorite episode, I did enjoy this one quite a bit. It had some pretty good scenes, especially the stuff in past and present FTL. My favorite scene was when Snow White and Emma go into the nursery that was supposed to be Emma's room growing up- that was a very sweet/sad scene and was well acted by both actresses. I also liked seeing Charming's mother again, but I was very sad that she had to die :( But, on the flip side, I just LOVED how Snow drew her sword on Lancelot when she realized it was Cora in disguise (Mwhahahahaha XD). I also liked that Jefferson was reunited with his daughter but, sadly, that part of the plot line seemed rushed.
Definitely one of my favorite episode!! :D Finally, another Rumplestiltskin and Belle themed episode! :D
It had a lot to like in it- Belle, Rumplestiltskin, and pre-Curse Rumplestiltskin, little Baelfire, Belle and Red becoming friends, the LIBRARY, we meet Captain Hook, and Prince Charming and Rumplestiltskin working together(I LOVE it when they work together, they're hilarious and have a great dynamic.)
I loved the entire thing, so it's really hard to pick a favorite! XD I'd have to say my favorite scene was when, after Belle pretty much broke it off with Rumplestiltskin, he gave her a library(since she loves books) and told her the truth of why he was using magic(which she'd challenged him about and he'd evaded), before letting her go- of course, Belle being herself, isn't going to let him go and asks him out for a hamburger since she's never had one before(she'd been in an asylum cell since the curse); it was a beautifully acted scene and made me very happy; definitely a big moment for Rumplestiltskin :D. I also really enjoyed seeing Belle sticking up for herself and telling the two men in her life(Rumplestilskin, and her father*who had tried to send her across the line to forget herself because he didn't like her being with Rumplestiltskin) to back off and let her live her own life; a lot of people were annoyed with Belle for getting angry at Rumplestiltskin when he was not being honest and open with her but I disagree with them. If she hadn't been sticking up for herself against him and letting him get away with things- and if he had been controlling of her(the best thing about their relationship is that he's willing to let her go, which shows that he does truly care for her)- then I would have said their relationship was abusive and would not have endorsed it(at the beginning, however; now it's beyond that rocky start and is now stable). So, what do you want her to do, people? Be all submissive and let him lie and evade her questions? That's not healthy, so I'm very glad that they did this with her character(and with his). And she isn't trying to 'change' him, she's bringing the goodness in his cursed self out, which is a GOOD thing. Sheesh, people. Oh, and of course, I loved Belle and Red's friendship(And Iced Tea!! :D).
And I of course can't forget the awesome stuff going on in FTL! :D I loved seeing Pre-Curse Rumplestiltskin again(you just feel so bad for him, he's so pitiful) as well as Baelfire(who was a little kid); it was also interesting to meet his wife, Milah, and see what happened to her. Like a lot of people, I don't really like her- I understand why she wanted to leave, but she should NOT have left her child behind like she did(she didn't even tell him goodbye)- I guess that makes her a deadbeat Mom :P. And, of course, making her husband think she'd been kidnapped by pirates was very low too. Though, I still don't think her death was justified. Hook was interesting, and I loved the scene where Milah died(it was very well acted), but I didn't really find him that amazing or anything(I don't understand why so many girls think he's hot- sure, the actor, out of costume, is very good looking, but when he's in costume, and in character, he looks kind of weird(though it is probably the jewelry that's making me not find him attractive in costume) and is a bad person, so why have a crush on him?).
Oh, and of course, we got this hilarious scene XD
(Hello Doctor, I didn't realize you lived in Storybrooke XD).
Another really good episode! :) While I did enjoy finding out the identity of Dr. Whale, what really made this episode awesome was what we saw of Regina's character and her growth; it was beautiful. I especially loved how her trying to get Daniel(the guy she liked) back was paralleled in FTL and Storybrooke. It was really sad to see Daniel brought back from the dead as a, well, a zombie in some ways(in Storybrooke, which is the present); the ending, where he somehow fought through the monster in him to tell Regina to let him go (and her having to pretty much destroy him) was very wrenching to watch and was definitely one of Lana Parilla's best performances to date.
Probably one of my least favorite of the season- it wasn't bad by any means it just seemed to lack a lot of things, which I think was contributed by the splintered storytelling. I did really like the scene with Emma and the Giant, Anton- it was very well acted and made me like Jorge Garcia, who I hadn't known anything about before. In fact, I'd say that was my favorite part of the episode. Actually, I pretty much liked all of the Present-FTL scenes. However, what kind of bogged the episode down for me was the flashbacks for Emma- they were good but they just didn't show enough, since I'd been hoping to see more.
Child of the Moon:
Definitely my least favorite episode of the season. It was much too quick and filled with too many characters I wasn't interested in who weren't developed well at all. There were some good moments(like the Storybrooke stuff, which was interesting at times and the ending). I especially found the FTL flashback lacking. I also didn't like what they did to Belle in this episode- she was trying to help Red out with her 'werewolf' problem and Red chained the poor girl(well, not girl, she's an adult) to a desk and left her there...yeah, that's such a good idea, let's lock someone up when you could kill her in your wolf form...SO SMART! :P. I also didn't like that Red and David kind of laughed about her being chained to the desk; I know I'd be pretty pissed off and violent if someone did that to me. I mean, chaining someone up against their will is not funny! :P
Into the Deep:
Another great episode! :D While not the best, it was still one of my favorites of the season. There were a lot of good scenes in this episode- I loved getting the hamburger date scene(which I'd been waiting to see since episode 4) and I also enjoyed Mr. Gold telling Henry the bedtime story. The dark, fiery room plot for victims of the sleeping curse was a good idea and I enjoyed seeing that. This episode also had me liking Aurora(who I hadn't really cared about before all that much), which was great. I loved how she wasn't a combatant but she was still very brave and would do the right thing, even if she was tortured or killed for it (it's cool to see guy and girl characters like that, it evens up the types of characters, which I think it a good thing).
Queen of Hearts:
After the really good episode Into the Deep, I felt like Queen of Hearts was a little lacking. I didn't hate- I really enjoyed it, especially the ending where Regina endangered herself to rescue Snow White and Emma, for her son, Henry. However, I felt the climax could have been a bit more 'epic'; it just felt sort of flat. Maybe because I knew the outcome already.
Oh, and one other thing about this episode- I actually do get why Rumplestiltskin and Regina put that spell on the well; they don't want Cora coming to Storybrooke. Yes, it would have killed Snow White and Emma, but sometimes you have to make hard decisions like that, especially when hundreds of lives are at stake.
The Cricket Game:
While not the best episode of the season, the show finally seemed to bring back the magic from last season, and, for that, I was very grateful. I enjoyed seeing more of Regina's character development, and, as I have for the past episodes of the season, I enjoyed seeing Archie help Regina with her addiction to magic. Also, Cora does some pretty evil stuff and I loved the twist at the end. Oh, and the brief scene we got with Belle was great :D. Poor Archie and poor person who was killed and then made to look like him :(
BEST EPISODE OF THE SEASON!! :D I absolutely loved this episode! It was so exciting, focused on my two favorite characters, had wonderful acting moments, and showed Belle at her best! A lot of people overlook her character and see her as a silly, weak child, viewers and characters alike, and that attitude is exemplified here, but it turns that thought on its head and shows us how smart and brilliant she is(she can take care of herself and she isn't even trained in fighting, YAY! :D I want more characters like this).
I enjoyed both the Storybrooke aspect and the FTL aspect, but I think I liked the Storybrooke section just a bit better. Besides Belle being her kind, sweet self(like the scene at the beginning and the one at the end where they are in the car/at the town line), she also, in Storybrooke and FTL sections, pawns Captain Hook twice(first time she knocks and book shelf on top of him and the second time she talks to him until she has him maneuvered so she can hit him in the head with a ship oar and escape through the door to the deck), rescues Archie from the confines of the ship, finds the ship(which is invisible) in the first place by using her brains, defeats the Yaoguai/rescues Prince Phillip, tracks the Yaoguai down using a book(she got a sword, YAY!), and stands up for herself to Rumplestiltskin which I always enjoy seeing.
My favorite scene of the episode was when Belle and Rumplestiltskin arrived and the town line and both the talks we see between them; we see that their relationship has matured and become more solid and, now that I look back on it, I think this was probably the biggest moment in their relationship so far. Thoroughly enjoyed it(I also loved how Belle already cares about his son, Baelfire, even though she's never met him; I just wish she could have went with him; I'd been hoping they both could travel to find him).
The emotions were so well conveyed- one particular scene I appreciated was, when Hook is looking through his spyglass at Rumplestiltskin and Belle in the shot, we see Rumple cover his mouth in horror when he realizes he's lost his only hope for finding his son- the despair was very palpable, even though you couldn't hear what was going on- good acting, writing, and directing right there.
A lot of fans didn't like the ending, but, at the time, I was perfectly fine with it(Hook shot Belle across the town line and she lost her memories), but now, I don't really get what the point of that plot-line was(more on that later).
In the Name of the Brother:
I'm a bit conflicted about this episode- I did like it, especially the Belle at the hospital scenes(and where the Charmings arrive after the huge accident), and the back story for Doctor Whale was interesting as well, though a bit underdeveloped which was sad since it had potential; the scene where the now-monstrous brother of Dr. Frankenstein(wolf) wants his brother to kill him was very powerful and sad. Another great thing was the potential for a connection between Red Riding Hood and Doctor Whale, their scenes were really intriguing.
What kind of ruined it for me was the thing with Cora- YUCK! :P. Overall, the episode was written well, and I loved the atmosphere(oh, and Rumplestiltskin's attitude at the end was perfect). And guess what, this episode had a Star Wars reference!! :D Star Wars music! :D
After two really good episodes, this one felt a little 'not as cool', but it was still well done. I was happy to see Jorge Garcia as Anton, the Giant, and see more of his backstory. It was also interesting to see Charming's evil twin(James) and find out Charming's actual name(which was David and was oddly enough, his cursed name). Another thing that was great(and was my favorite part of the episode, in fact), was the scenes where Mr. Gold(Rumplestiltskin), Emma, and Henry go to the airport- all of these were wonderfully acted, and quite humorous, with great quotes, both serious and funny. Having Emma be so caring and kind to Mr. Gold was very nice and I felt bad for him since he basically had to stumble through the airport metal detector. I do wish we could have had more of those scenes.
Another one of my favorites of this seasons! :D In this episode we finally get to see who Baelfire is as an adult*Henry's father*, which I already knew was going to happen, (and they completely sold the idea to me, even though I hadn't wanted it to happen at first), and Rumplstiltskin is finally reunited with him. The best scene was, to me, when Baelfire confronts his father and tells him how he is still haunted, every night before he goes to sleep, by his father letting him go and fall through the portal- very moving, especially considering Baelfire's not-caring attitude in the other times they talk; the rest of the conversation was great as well and, while some people didn't like it, it made complete since to me. The rest of the New York scenes were good; besides the Baelfire/Rumplestiltskin scenes, I also enjoyed the ones between Emma/NeilBaelfire and Rumplestiltskin/Henry.
As for the FTL section, I loved that one too! :D. It was amazing, as well as very sad, to see Rumplestiltskin before he went to war- seeing how carefree and happy he was(in fact, he reminded me of how I act sometimes), was very sobering, especially considering what happens to him later on; you actually understand why he wanted to go to war, which I think was an important part of this episode and his character. Another one of the most heartbreaking scenes of this episode was when, not wanting his son to grow up fatherless(a seer told him that his actions on the battlefield would leave his son fatherless) like his own father, through his cowardice, had, he lames himself by smashing his leg; the last one, I'd say, is when he returns home to find that he does, indeed, have a son(like the seer had told him) but his wife now hates him because he is a 'coward', even though he loved both of them so much, he didn't want them to live without him. His despair, agony, and hope(when he holds his son for the first time) are amazingly acted by Robert Carlyle, and proves yet again that this man is one of the best actors we have right now. The ending introduced an odd plot twist that I don't think I like yet, but whatever, the rest of the episode was perfect! :D
The Queen is Dead:
Even though I didn't like this episode as much as the few before it, it was still a good one. I was so happy to see Baelfire, when his father was in danger, say "Papa" like he did as a child and was actually concerned for his well being. Bailee Madison gave her best performance yet as Young Snow White(her and Ginnifer Goodwin look so much alike, it's creepy; they so could be different-aged versions of themselves) and I liked the actress playing Snow White's nurse/nanny/servant Johanna(she was on the show Downton Abbey which I hope to start this summer). The ending was shocking and very sad and actually had me shout at the screen in anger. However, I do have a couple of complaints- I feel like the villains found what they were looking for WAY to easily. Rumplestiltskin is a crafty, very intelligent person and how quick the villainous trio- I mean, duo since Hook got knocked to the floor- got to it just didn't make much sense :P.
The Miller's Daughter:
Though I loved this episode, I didn't obsess over it as much as other people did. I'm not sure why, but I didn't think this episode was the best of the season- The Outsider holds that title.
Besides that, though, this episode definitely was amazing. It had two perfect scenes(which I expected from the wonderful Jane Espenson), the first being the phone call Rumplestiltskin makes to an amnesiac Belle, which was beautifully written; I loved how he made it all about her and her feelings, instead of his, even though he was dying. It acutely showed how selfless he is when it comes to those he loves. The second perfect scene came right after the phone call- the somewhat, temporary reconciliation between Baelfire and Rumplestiltskin- if I remember it correctly, it dealt me an emotional punch to the stomach, which rarely happens, especially when Baelfire grabs his father's hand and presses it to his forehead. The rest of the episode was great, as well, though! I had been slightly worried that the episode would get me to actually like Cora(who I hate), and, in a way, it did. I liked her character at the beginning of the episode, she was funny, snarky, and tough and I liked that about her. However, once she met Rumplestiltskin, I didn't like her anymore :p. The ending scene with Regina and Cora, where Cora, briefly, gets her heart back, was very sad, especially considering that, just when Regina saw her true mother for the first time, she died(though, I have to admit, I'm a bit annoyed with Regina- she went back to her mother way too quickly, and somehow thought she could get Henry to stay with her after attempting to help her mother kill people he cared about...yeah, right.) One thing that confused me was why what Snow White did was bad- Cora was going to kill them all and even though it was a cruel thing she did(she probably should have put the heart in herself), it was necessary for her to do.
Welcome to Storybrooke:
While not focusing on the main characters as much and not packed full of action, I absolutely adored this episode. It was really cool seeing Regina during her first week in Cursed Storybrooke and why, through a regular family who just so happens to have been nearby when the town arrived, she wanted a son.
The family, a father and his son who are recovering from the loss of their mother/wife, were amazing and I really liked the two actors- the actor playing the little boy was very good(One of the better ones I've seen) and I just adored the Father character, he was so nice and I just wanted to give him a hug. And, of course, I loved the various Star Wars references! :D.
One thing I thought was interesting in this episode(and it was pointed out to me on Tumblr and Facebook by some of things), was that, when Rumplestiltskin asked the Charmings to looks after Belle and make sure she was okay(I know there were doctors and nurses there, but they were abusing her in the hospital, by lying to her and such), they didn't look after her and Regina somehow was able to walk in and get information(and knocked the girl out to get it; and yes, I know she could have used magic to get in, but still) and the Charmings weren't notified about this. However, when Snow was in danger, Rumplestiltskin protected her from Regina, even though he didn't have to.
Selfless, Brave and True:
This episode was both enjoyable and annoying. I was very happy to see August again, since he had been one of my favorite characters from the previous season, and as he had been pretty much non-existent in the present up until this point. The other parts of his back story were also fascinating and I enjoyed seeing him before he came to Storybrooke and before he told Neil/Baelfire to break up with Emma(which we saw in Tallahassee). I also liked seeing August redeem himself in the end, and stand up to Tamara. However, in the end, they kill him off and return him to being a little boy(Pinocchio). Even though the actor who plays little Pinocchio is one of my favorite child actors, I was definitely not happy with this arrangement. First off, it felt like a cheap cop out, and secondly, August was one of my favorite characters!!! :( Now I won't get to see him again, unless they somehow bring him back :(.
Another one of my favorite episodes! :D In this episode, we see Regina put fake memories of a different person, named Lacey, in Amnesiac Belle's brain, making her someone who Rumplestiltskin would have a hard time getting to like him back, so he can return her memories. In the Storybrooke section, we get to see poor Rumplestiltskin, who is the Dark One and the most powerful, scariest man in town, act like a total goofball! XD It's so adorable, especially when he accidentally knocks wine onto Lacey, nearly drops his menu, and asks her out, and nearly freaks and backs out XD. And we get to see more of David and Rumplestiltskin, which was great, especially with David encouraging him- loved it! :D
And you know what's even better- we got an AMAZING section in FTL- more Rumple and Belle back-story which takes place in and amongst the episode Skin Deep. I totally adored the scenes in this episode. We got some awesome humor(loved seeing snappy, retorting Rumple again XD) and some very meaningful scenes between my two favorite characters :D. My favorite scene was, surprisingly to me, quite overlooked. In the episode, the Sheriff of Nottingham tells Rumplestiltskin that, he will give him information on Robin Hood(who'd stolen magic from Rumple), if Rumple gives him Belle for a bit to do what he wants to do with her for a few hours. Unlike a lot of villains, Rumplestiltskin refuses to let Belle basically get raped, and says no several times(and says she's not for sell), and finally resorts to taking his tongue out with magic and telling him that he will give it back only if the Sheriff tells him where Robin Hood's whereabouts are. Not only does this show that he already feels attracted to Belle, it also shows more of his character and proves my point that, even though he does evil things, he isn't THAT kind of evil(unlike Regina who raped Graham), and would never do such a thing or allow it to happen to someone under his care; it really made me appreciate his character even more now, which I didn't think could happen.
I of course loved the other beautiful scenes in FTL- Belle helping to convince Rumplestiltskin from shooting Robin Hood(though it was also mainly because he didn't want to leave Maid Marion's and Robin's child fatherless like he had; such a powerful moment) as well as the hug she gave him when he said he missed and she realized he had kindness and mercy in him(even though he didn't miss- it was a magic bow and always hit it's target). And the part where he gives Belle a library was so sweet and I definitely loved it :D. I v hope to see more of this sort of thing next season :D.
The Evil Queen:
This was an interesting episode- we see more of Regina and how warped her view of reality truly is(she tells Henry that she's going to be a hero for him- which basically means she's going to destroy the town and kill everyone in it..yeah, that's a hero.:P).
The FTL aspect was pretty good, in fact. I liked seeing Regina go undercover as a peasant, though I do think she was kind of stupid by trying to stop them from defacing a mannequin of herself- hasn't she ever heard of STEALTH!? :P. I was very pleased with the conversation between Snow and a disguised Regina, it was an interesting dynamic. I also liked what was going on in Storybrooke, with Tamara and Greg, and the group they are working for, called the Office. I definitely can't wait to see what happens with them next season.
Second Star to the Right:
Definitely a good starter for the two-part finale! :D While not as good as the episode that comes after it, this was still a great one! We had two amazing scenes between Emma and Neil/Baelfire that were so heartfelt and beautifully tragic, that it actually made me like the pairing which I hadn't been into before(it was so cool how Bae falling into the portal paralleled it happening to him in The Return, though this time he lets go of Emma instead of the other way around- best scene of the episode). I was very pleased to see young Baelfire, played by Dylan Schmid, again. He is my second favorite child/teen actor(after Asa Butterfield) and I can see him going far, he's amazing. It was also cool to have the Shadow from Peter Pan be evil XD. Neverland, from what little I've seen of it, looks very creepy and eerie and I can't wait to see more of it! :D.
And Straight on Till Morning;
What an AMAZING finale!!!! :D It wasn't exactly what I was expecting, and there were some stuff I didn't like(mainly that beginning scene where Mr. Gold tried to kill Henry, which felt really strange, and the cheesy way they handled the destruction gem, but more on that and a couple of other things later) but it was still so great! :D It had so many great things, so I'll have to list them off below!
Number 1: BELLE IS BACK!!! :D Even though a part of me was hoping they'd keep the Lacey plot going just a little bit longer, so the plot line would make more sense, I am so glad to have her back! :D The scene where she remembers who she is and the scene where she says goodbye to Rumplestiltskin at the end were among my main highlights of the light. :D One thing that struck me was that, the first thing Belle cared about was that Rumplestiltskin had lost his son- it shows how truly selfless she is, and I love that about her.
I just wish Belle hadn't stayed behind in Storybrooke :P Now my ship has been separated by a literal SHIP! XD :P. However, there is a chance that we will get a whole lot more character development through this, which I can't wait to see. :D Though, I still don't get why had the Lacey plot line, exactly. Was it for her character development, or Rumple's, or their relationship? Hmmm...
Number 2: Even though the destruction of the Storybrooke-blowing gem was SO cheesy(oh, yeah, I have magic, I can help! *join magic and BOOM evil gem is gone! YAY! :P), the events that led up to it were so good! I was so proud of Regina in this episode and it made me smile when, all of them(the Charmings and her), thought they were going to die, Henry went over to Regina, his real mother(even if not through blood, she is his true mother, since she raised him), to hold onto in what he thought were going to be his last moments. Emma's 'Mom and Dad' were also good and it was nice to see her finally accept that they are her parents and that they do care for her.
Number 3: Baelfire and Hook. First off, Dylan Schmid gave a stellar performance in this episode- it was amazing and had me very impressed. It was very interesting to see Baelfire and Hook developing an almost familial relationship, and I wish it could have worked out; it was nice seeing Hook show some emotions since we haven't got to see that since The Crocodile. This episode made me actually like Hook a lot more than I had.
Number 4: The Two plot twists at the end. One I'd already saw coming, but the last one had me cackling in appreciation for the cunning of the creators. Season 3 is going to be amazing.
Number 5: Charming and Hook are hilarious! XD enough said.
So, for those of you who watch this show, what were your favorite episodes and moments? And what do you hope to see next season?