Curses! Giant ice walls with the potential to cause a lot of flooding issues! Sexy pirates! Beautiful princesses! Random comic book product placements! Over the top costumes! A strange fascination with Mickey Mouse’s Hat! Yes, it’s time once again for ABC’s Once Upon a Time, with “Shattered Sight.”
Disclaimer: Frankly, any episode that serves as an excuse for putting Lana Parrilla into one of those over the top outfits again is going to get a bit of a pass from me. Not to say that she doesn’t also rock the business suits and other looks, but let’s face it: she was basically born to pull of these over the top looks. Why she is not joining up with Lady Gaga to take over the Oscar Red Carpet is beyond me.
This was one of those episodes, with a bonus sneak peak at Cruella DeVil. So! A bit of a pass.
Previously on Once Upon a Time: Ingrid, desperate to have two loving sisters again, decided that the best way to accomplish this was to destroy the entire town—excepting Elsa and Emma, identified as her two potential sisters—with an Evil Curse that would cause every resident in Storybrooke to hate everyone else. I’m not really sure the town needed a curse to cause this, but moving on. Also, Ingrid, you can totes find surrogate sisters through other methods, like, say, joining a nice crafting group. Granted this can lead to Unexpectedly Ugly Ceramic Objects appearing in your house, but all family relationships have their drawbacks. Really moving on. Rumple asked Ingrid to spare Belle and Henry as well. Ingrid, focused on Important Curse Stuff, agreed in a sorta “whatever, Rumple” way. Also, Rumple stole Hook’s heart, cause why not, Anna and Kristoff arrived in Storybrooke, cause why not, Regina and Robin Hood hooked up, cause—ok, I can think of a hundred reasons why not, but I do have to finish this post. Also, a heartless Hook kissed Emma cause Tumblr doesn’t have enough gifs of that sort of thing already.
And, because apparently no one in Storybrooke has the sense to put on a nice pair of goggles, everyone except for Emma, Elsa, Anna, Hook, Belle and Henry got totes cursed from pieces of falling mirror.
Also, someone threw a bottle over the side of a boat.
Got it? Then time for this week’s episode, “Shattered Sight.”
Over in Fairy Tale Land apparently nothing happened of any particular interest since once again the show decided to set the flashbacks in our world, starting with the sudden arrival of Ingrid in highly inappropriate, if striking, clothing in Boston in 1982. Ingrid, searching for guidance like so many others in Boston, happily found a nice psychic and eagerly handed over the large glittery necklace around her neck. To my genuine surprise, the psychic accepted this in lieu of cash without taking a single look to see exactly what the thing was made of. I guess even a completely fake necklace of that size could sell for at least $30—enough to pay for a session or two. If the necklace was real, though (as implied), wow, Ingrid, did you get cheated, and next time, just break off a single jewel for this kind of thing. To only Ingrid’s surprise, the psychic turned out to be Totes Fake, and Ingrid stalked off swearing that she would find little Emma, fake psychic or no fake psychic. I’m not entirely sure what the point of that scene was, other than robbing us of the opportunity to see Ingrid try to make it in our society, because the next flashback scene jumped ahead a few years to show us Ingrid now running a foster home, where she welcomed Emma and taught Emma important things like, if your foster brother is stealing your camera, the appropriate response is not to run away, but to torture the kid with fake spiders. Ingrid, naturally, keeps fake spiders around. This was all very sweet.
Total sidenote: As sweet as it was, though, I also found myself totally distracted since Ingrid’s living room? Basically exactly the same as Buffy’s, back on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, with everything—door, couch, table—in the identical position. I have no idea why this hit me so hard, but it did, and I thought I should inflict it on you. Moving on.
Ingrid also taught Emma how to win at the Claw Machine and promised to adopt her. Things were gliding along just perfectly, just like two Olympic ice dancers, until Emma made the mistake so many of us do: she brought up Harry Potter. This mention of magic reminded Ingrid that really, you aren’t truly mother and child until you’ve done something cruel and terrifying to jumpstart your kid’s magic, well, at least on this show, so she pushed Emma in the way of a car. Emma, to her credit, thought this, and Ingrid’s subsequent explanation of “magic” was completely bonkers and took off. You go, Emma. A final flashback scene showed Ingrid removing Emma’s memories after Emma arrived in Storybrooke, which was awfully convenient for the plot.
Over in Storybrooke, almost everyone went evil, and it was awesome. David and Snow hashed out every wrong thing that had ever happened since they met, including wrapping up their little baby like a breakfast burrito instead of a baby. (Actual thing in the script.) David also took the opportunity to point out one or two problems with the Frozen script, which, thank you David. Regina went full blown evil, complete in a marvelous high colored silvery black dress. Kristoff whined. Rumple chatted about the importance of matching the stars in the sky to the stars in Mickey Mouse’s Hat. (Actual thing on the show.) Ingrid revealed the greatest evil this show has yet seen: Carrot Sherbet. (Also actual thing on the show.) Everybody else attacked each other in the streets and rolled round and round.
What I’m saying is, this show is a lot more fun when everybody goes evil.
Oh. Right. The Plot. Well, after ditching the baby with Anna, who was less than thrilled about this, Elsa and Emma headed out to confront Ingrid. This went as well as you might think, largely because of the nice yellow ribbons tied around their wrists which inconveniently kept them from attacking Ingrid. Since the ribbons were Made of Love, Emma correctly deduced that they could be Destroyed with Hate, and equally correctly deduced that the best source for this hate would be Regina. It took Emma approximately thirty seconds to have Regina raging—frankly, I was stunned it took that long—and, freed of the ribbons, Emma and Elsa headed off for their big confrontation.
Regina, naturally, decided that this—THIS—would be the time to finally kill Snow White once and for all, and marched off to the jail, where the Charmings were still merrily bickering, despite Anna’s attempt to remind them that they were, after all, Snow White and Prince Charming! True Love!
I mention this mostly since the show told us just last week that Anna and Kristoff were completely frozen while Snow White and Prince Charming had all of their happy falling in love adventures. So it’s not at all clear how or when Anna learned any of this, but it was kinda sweet, so I guess we should let this pass, especially since Snow White’s cheerful and delightful response invoked murder and Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah in the same monologue, which is quite something.
Anyway. Before we could dwell on the multiple timeline issues on this show, Regina showed up, immediately banishing Anna and Kristoff “back to wherever you came from” on the grounds that she didn’t care, and equally immediately starting up a sword fight with Snow AND threatening the baby stroller, an act of pure evil since it was no longer under warranty.
I won’t lie: frankly, this fight made no sense. I also won’t lie: it was seriously kinda awesome, especially when Regina tried once again to blame Snow for not being able to keep secrets and Snow finally burst out with what we have all been arguing since season one:
“I WAS TEN!”
Thank you, Snow.
It would be remiss of me not to note that David looks just a LITTLE turned on by the whole sword thing. It would be equally remiss of me to claim I wasn’t.
That “back to wherever you came from” turned out to be the beach, either because Regina was having an off day or because the beach was cheaper to film or because this allowed for a nice bit of plot contrivance. You decide! The beach and the curse inspired Anna and Kristoff to have a nice quality argument about wedding delays, curses, deep emotional connections to reindeer and that sort of thing until Anna found a bottle on the beach and hit Kristoff on the back of his head, which you go, Anna, and if this has implications for your later marital life when not under a curse, far be it for me to say anything. As it turned out, the bottle was the same one tossed overboard during the very first episode of this season, and if you are asking how it ended up in Storybrooke, it’s because sometimes inexplicable magic needs to drive the plot along, especially if said inexplicable magic can be used to deliver a poignant Final Message.
Elsewhere, Rumple, remarkably unconcerned by the chaos in the town—in his defense, it’s the sort of thing that’s happened frequently over the past four years, and even the most eager villains are going to get jaded after a bit—told Hook that just as soon as the stars in the sky matched up with the stars in the hat he was taking off to New York City with Belle and Henry, and ordered Hook to go kidnap Henry even if the kid had turned Totes Evil. Fortunately for everyone except perhaps the audience, Henry’s idea of Going Evil turned out to be whining about his mother’s relationship and attacking people with marbles, which I guess suggests that he has at least seen Home Alone—which might count as evil, if we stretch the point. In any case, he got away, largely because just as Hook was about to chase after him, he, that is, Hook, got sorta attacked by Will Scarlet in the following exchange:
Will Scarlet: SO, HOOK, WE MEET AGAIN AND THIS TIME I AM TOTES GOING TO WIN.
Hook: Uh-huh. Kinda in a hurry now.
Will Scarlet: I SHALL PUNCH YOU!
Hook DODGES. Will Scarlet PUNCHES A WALL.
That was remarkably ineffective all around, but it did allow Henry to get away.
Meanwhile, Elsa and Emma were trying to confront Ingrid, and mostly failing, either since, as Ingrid thought, they still loved her even though she’d abused them and stolen their memories, or, as I thought, because they were still good and not all about the killing thing. Fortunately before this could drag on too long, Anna rushed in to read the letter from the bottle, which was mostly about how awesome and great Ingrid was. To my surprise, Ingrid did not, initially, take this well, assuming that Anna was totally making all of it up, until she read the actual letter and remembered her sisters and the ribbons.
This made her all sad, and even suicidal; she immediately decided that she had to reverse the curse, saying that she could only do this by destroying herself. And with that, she raised her hands and started summoning the bits of the evil mirror BACK INTO HER BODY, dying as she did so. Fortunately, she had just long enough to give Emma and Elsa back their memories, and assure all three of them that they were terribly, terribly, special, and not to worry, because this—dying by assorted fragments of cursed mirror—was her Happy Ending, because she now had the love of her sisters and would soon be with them. Well. That was sweet.
Everybody except for Rumple and Hook hugged and hugged and hugged some more. Rumple, massively calm about the whole thing, promised not to harm Storybrooke when he left, but refused to make any promises about the rest of the world. Watch out, New York City: Rumple and Mickey Mouse are coming to get you.
Unanswered questions: So, does Ingrid’s demise mean that Maid Marian is unfrozen now, and if so, (a) what are her thoughts about being trapped in a locked room while still frozen with her impressionable and very young son, and (b) what does this mean for Regina and Robin? (I am assuming angst.) Will Hook get his heart back by the end of the next episode, and if not, will Emma be able to tell? And will Cruella DeVil arrive surrounded by barking Dalmatians?
Until next week, when Cruella, Ursula and Maleficent all decide to take a chance at Once Upon a Time.
Mari Ness lives in central Florida, where she has so far been unable to match up the stars in her Mickey Mouse Hat to the stars in the sky. She feels quite inadequate.