After what is one of the longest mid season breaks ever, we once again return to Storybrooke, nice to be back.
When we last we left our heroes, Snow and the gang were sent back to the Enchanted Forest care of Regina reworking Pan’s curse to send them home. Emma and Henry were happily living in New York, with no memory of their time in Storybrooke. All things comes to an end when Hook arrives to help Emma get her memory back, saying that her family is in danger and needs her help. This is what most of the episode revolves around, Hook showing up and disrupting Emma’s “perfect life” with Henry. To make matters more complicated Emma’s boyfriend, Walsh, popped the question. So what we get is a lot of Emma freaking out, both from her relationship and from this stranger who showed up saying that he knows her. Eventually she listen’s to Hook and pays a visit to the apartment Neal was living in before his coming to Storybrooke (I’m surprised it was still empty) and after an amusing scene were Emma gets Hook arrested, she finally listens to him, drinking the potion he offered and restoring her memories of Storybrooke. The action then gets ramped up when she breaks up with Walsh, only for him to turn into a winged monkey and attack her. She wins of course, she has hero levels after all, and the next day she departs with Henry and Hook for Storybrooke. We close out with a heart warming scene of Emma being reunited with her parents, and Snow being pregnant.
When not seeing the sights of the Big Apple, we got a nice nature walk through the Enchanted Forest with Snow and the gang. After the curse breaks, they end up in a field, where Aurora and Prince Wraithbait (yeah, that nickname ain’t going anywhere) are having a picnic. They offer their help to Snow and the others, who plan to set out for Regina’s castle and set up shop there. We get a bit of foreshadowing when Aurora and Wraitbait talk about the ominous “her” which due to the mad amounts of promos, we know its the Wicked Witch. I was fully prepared to write forest time off as just a nature walk and with bits of foreshadowing, but boy was I wrong. It was in this sequence that we got one of the best scenes of the episode, hell, one of the best of the season to date, Snow and Regina’s talk. Snow comes across Regina burying her heart, wanting to escape the pain of losing Henry. In an amazingly well done scene Snow talks her out of it, telling her that she can’t give up in finding happiness again. Despite Regina being standoffish at first, she eventually goes along with what Snow is telling her. Words cannot describe how fantastic this was to watch, we are finally seeing some positive steps forward in their relationship, which has been long overdue. I hope they build up this more, that we actually get to see their relationship grow into something great, because with everything we have seen, if these two fully embrace working together, they will be a major force to be reckoned with.
Building on the awesome scenes, we then had Snow and Regina get saved from another flying monkey thanks to the timely arrival of Robin Hood. His and Regina’s interactions were great, seeing them react to one another, especially Regina, was just fun, and does a solid job of building up on the romance between those two that was shown as a possibility in Tinkerbell’s first episode. The Enchanted Forest scenes wrap up with the good guys finding that Regina’s castle is covered in a hijacked protection spell (gee, I wonder who did that) and Regina promising revenge. We cut to inside the castle where the Wicked Witch is using some of Regina’s blood to put together a spell or potion of some sort, and with a truly, truly stupid line about evil vs wicked. Just seriously, if that is the writing we can expect from the Wicked Witch, lets just have Emma take her out now and bring in someone else, maybe a necromancer or something.
This was an interesting episode, in that the modern day scenes were less than great, and the flashback scenes were the real strength of the episode. While nothing was overly bad in this episode, really only a few parts stood out as great. I was expecting something a bit bigger after the three month wait, but I wasn’t disappointed by anything it. There was a lot of great scenes, the characters were still the same characters we have come to know and love, and with Henry’s lack of memories of Storybrooke and a new villain that may be interesting to see, there is a lot to look forward to for the back half of the season.
P.S. I apologize for missing my review of OUaT in Wonderland, honestly though that it started up again this week and not last week, and due to an unfortunately busy weekend, (Snooty just does not give me a break) I have not yet had a chance to watch it. Promise, a review will be up for this week’s episode.
P.P.S Keep your eye out for the first post from our guest blogger, Prof. Science, who will be writing up reviews of Cosmos.