Monday, February 18, 2013

Once Upon A Time: Manhattan

This weeks episode of Once Upon a Time was a big storyline payoff from seeds that have been planted since the beginning of the show, and I'm not talking about magic beanstalk seeds.  Don't read this unless you are caught up and have watched, "Manhatttan."

So now it's confirmed that everyone's favorite theory is true.  Rumple's son Baelfire is Neal and Henry's Emma-deserting, thief father. Henry has both Prince Charming and Rumplestiltskin for grandfathers, the Evil Queen as his adopted mom, and Snow White for a grandmother. As Charming pointed out in my favorite line from the episode, "That would be one awkward Thanksgiving."

This episode made sense of the snappy buy mysterious opening to season two, with Neal (although we didn't know who he was at that point) getting the Storybrooke post card from the pigeon saying the word, "broken." I went back and watched the scene and it's the same Manhattan apartment. I'm still not sure what all of the close ups of horses or the song that played in the background, "Charley's Girl" by Lou Reed in that scene we're about, but I liked the song much I bought it.

We spent a good bit of the episode on Rumple's backstory, how he lost Mila's love by being a coward to come home alive to her and their newborn son and how badly he wanted his son. This almost makes us sympathize with the Dark One. Almost. This completely vanishes at the end of the episode and I think you know what I mean. 

Meanwhile back in Storybrooke, The Queens, Evil and Hearts, are looking for Rumples dagger so they can steal it's dark magic. Regina is going along with this so she can get Henry back. This doesn't seem like a winning strategy to me, but I don't think like an evil queen (well most of the time.) And they both decided they had gotten enough usefulness out of everyone's favorite pirate, Hook. 

Our mystery visitor with the even more mysterious Pennsylvania license plate (2KFL138) now has a video of Regina performing magic over Belle's bedside. He e-mailed this to his mysterious female contact that we only know as "Her" from his caller ID on his cell phone.  

On the surface this story seems to be your basic "the mere mortals found out we're special" problem that seems to surface in almost every magical story from Harry Potter to Charmed. I don't find this type of story super compelling but...every time I see the "Her" on his caller ID, I think of the White Witch from the Chronicles of Narnia. And then I think, the wardrobe from the Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe is a portal that goes between the real world and the magic world. And Disney, which owns ABC, co-produced the recent Chronicles of Narnia movies. Hmmm. If a lion shows up my suspicions will be confirmed, and that might be super interesting.

Now we know who Baelfire is, what mysteries do we have:
1) Can Regina and her mom get Rumple's super evil dagger? Bets are that they will but it won't work how they want it to.

2) Will Neal go back to Storybrooke? Sure. He wants to spend time with his son. Does he have another fairy tale role, like Peter Pan?

3) Who is: "Her" and what will the exposure of magic to the real world mean for our fairy tale friends?

4) What does license (2KFL138) plate mean?

5) The seer said that Henry is more than he seems. What does that mean?????

Interested in your theories and comments below. 

You can see other Once commentaries from Mystery Playground here


  1. ["And Disney, which owns ABC, co-produced the recent Chronicles of Narnia movies. Hmmm."]

    Disney only released the movie adaptations of the first two novels. 20th Century Fox released the adaptation of the third film.