Once Upon a Time: Time to Transform

Once Upon a Time S01E15: "Red-Handed"

It's hard to know where to begin with this week's episode of Once Upon a Time. Never in my viewing life have things that I liked so much been so bound up with things that I can't stand. Last night's ultimate message with Ruby's backstory (by the way, how hot and amazing is Meghan Ory? Hi there Angelina Jolie 2.0!) was "Adventure is scary! Don't leave home!" And I strenuously object to that message. You find one human heart in a box and you need to go running home with your werewolf tail between your legs? Not okay.

And yet, every second she and Snow walked through the forest together was a moment out of my wildest dreams. The visuals of the snowy forest and her red cloak and Snow White's dirty white gown was an exquisite feast to my eyeballs. Red Riding Hood as a lady werewolf who tied up her one true love and refused to leave his side, then morphed and ate him: that's daring, dark and amazing and I can't hold my two thumbs up high enough to that kind of madness. It was an unexpected turn, that Granny had been locking Red in the house each night and protecting the humans of their town from her transformations. What a goth little twist on the toothless original tale.

I was so thrilled when Ruby stormed out of Granny's café (taking all the business with her, I'm pretty sure 90 percent of the customers there are just checking her and her apron out)! It was like, "Okay! Things are happening!" and then we had Mary tell her to move in. That was exciting in itself, the idea of the three of them being roommates, sitting up late watching Legend together, but we never saw them in the apartment.

She spent one day kind of outside of her comfort zone and then decided nothing could be better than running a diner in the town she's never left. Fantastic message. If you really want to streamline existence, why not just be born in your own open grave and curl up there until you die? Then you REALLY don't have to worry about getting into trouble in the outside world. I have no patience with this "Grow where you're planted" kind of message.

Also, I don't like David Nolan enough to have any patience with him having a mental break down and wandering around the woods. He had black outs! He didn't remember if he called Cathryn or not! Shoot him, shoot that effer already. No good to anyone.

And what can I say about Regina framing Mary Margaret? I am super grateful that we are finally going to see the beef between Snow and the Evil Queen, but we're not completely stupid, OuaT writers: we know you can't lock up Mary Margaret in jail indefinitely. Real talk: we all know Regina killed the bitch and put her heart in a box. Kind of what she does. And we all know she waved some wand or cast a spell by throwing some chicken bones and made Mary Margaret's fingerprints appear in the box, right? So was the tension supposed to be us, as the audience, worrying that Mary Margaret was going to be framed as a psycho killer by magic means and then electrocuted for a crime she didn't commit? What the hell is this, Dancer in the Dark?

I understand that this show is determined to be around for the next six years, but will anything good happen, ever? There is no show on TV as relentlessly mean to its audience as Once Upon a Time. I can't remember the last time I walked away from this show feeling anything but bummed. The characters are getting progressively stupider and stupider. David's black outs almost feel like an extension of the encroaching stupidity that seems to flow through the town like lead in the water supply.

Speaking of stupid: Emma, do you not remember that you were curled up next to Mary Margaret on her bed the night Cathryn went missing? At what point was Mary Margaret supposed to have procured a jewelry box and disemboweled Cathryn after dragging her from her car? Emma, I shouldn't be the one pointing this out. But don't expect the world's most glamorous Sheriff to piece together that she was Mary Margaret's rock solid alibi, a waitress managed to out-cop her this episode on her first damn day. Emma, without Ruby's K9 sniffing capabilities, would probably have been looking for that human heart until Regina came into the office and hit her upside the head with it.

Speaking of Regina, I miss Lana Parrilla. I miss her doing something other than running into a room and hissing at Emma. While Regina as a character has become annoyingly successful in keeping all the action frozen, Lana, my fave actress on the series, is almost always off camera. Both she and Robert Carlyle are being seriously underused, and how the writing staff justifies benching two of their biggest players week-after-week is beyond my comprehension. It's time for a good villains-centered episode, one that doesn't base its emotional stakes on something we know can't happen (like Mary Margaret getting convicted of murder) or a character we've just met. Just put Lana and Robert in a room across from each other and make your audience happy FOR ONCE, FOR ONCE UPON A TIME!

Somewhere along the way holding up the story became a lot more important to the writers than the characters. The writers privilege obfuscating the story over the actors, over the audience, and over the natural momentum of the story itself. There is no sense of rewarding the audience for its loyalty or building on meaningful relationships. Every note of emotional justice or relationship fulfillment is sacrificed to drawing out the story for as long as possible, like a terrible day-time soap opera. OuaT seriously needs to take a few tips from Revenge, which manages to have fresh developments every episode, and those developments actually re-energize the characters and lead to MORE developments. With Revenge, a small story explodes into many possible directions like a tree trunk splitting into finer and finer branches and twigs and buds, growing larger and fuller. OuaT works backwards, with a predetermined conclusion sucking the storyline toward it like a black hole, and they are trying to avoid the inevitable conclusion by throwing whatever crazy obstacles they can to slow the natural momentum of how events realistically and naturally would unfold. It's not tension to delay finishing a sentence. It's not stakes to threaten characters you can't harm. OuaT gets a lot of credit with me because of its beautiful fairy tale world. But Storybrooke is starting to feel as much of a trap to the audience as it is to its miserable inhabitants.

QUESTIONS…

…Were you disappointed that Ruby returned to Granny's or did that warm your heart?

…Does Emma not remember being right next to Snow when Cathryn went missing?

…Would finding a human heart seriously eff you up, even if you were part werewolf?

…Do you miss Lana and Robert or are you enjoying all this filler?

…Do you care anymore if Mary Margaret and David get together or do they just annoy you now?

…What are your predictions based on next week's promo?

Comments (241)
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came for the captioned pics, stayed for the part comparing it to revenge.

i wish Lily would watch all my fav shows!

(now off to check if she is)
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Oh, and I was thinking about something, and had to post it here. Lily, you mentioned that Emma and MM were together the night Cathryn went missing, so how could she have put the heart in the box. Unless Emma and MM have been together the entire time since Cathryn has gone missing, MM could have gone back at any time and removed her heart. Who says it had to have happened the exact same time she went missing?



Granted, we all know MM didn't do it, but still, try to think a little outside the box.
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at katheryn's actual time of death when her heart was taken, mm was with emma.
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Also, I came to this series late (I've caught up with it now, though) and also didn't start reading these reviews until the one for "Skin Deep" (which is also why until now I kind of agreed with those people who said the reviewer was being overly negative. Not that I agree with everything she writes, but since I've gone back and read them all they seem much more fair). I'm just wondering, is there a review for the Hansel and Gretel episode?
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OUaT:" Who's your Daddy?"

1/16/12

from tv.com front page click on news, from that page look to extreme left for a list of reviewers, click on Lily Sparks and all her reviews are listed.
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Although I love travel and think it's a great experience, I think that in the end it was okay that Ruby went back to the diner (especially since she can't actually leave Storybrooke anyway, and it would be annoying to have disappearances keep piling up). When she returned she never said she wanted to stay forever without leaving, just that she didn't want to work at the police station anymore. In the first episode it was mentioned that she stayed in Storybrooke because Granny had a heart attack. If this is the case, despite her fight she probably never really wanted to leave her and maybe just plans to travel at a later time. In the end it's a television show, not everything is meant as a message, and they had to find some reason to keep her in Storybrooke, since she can't actually leave without something horrible happening to her.
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Gotta add that this show (despite the weaknesses you've skillfully pointed out) has brought my engineer husband into the living room together with our teen daughters for this fun hour every week, even sitting through commercials...this guy normally watches TV only from the DVR and only shows like Modern Marvels-- it's a fairy tale happy ending in the making for me!



I look forward to your fun and passionate reviews almost as much as this show...thanks!

Question -- Who do you think Dr. Whale is? I was convinced he is Pinnochio due to his lying and immature behavior in every scene he's in, but at the time of the curse P. was a little kid.
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Hi, Lily. Was just scrolling through this discussion forum, and noticed that the criticisms of your reviews are, proportionally, getting greater. For whatever it's worth, my guess is that is simply because those of us who agree with you are getting less and less impassioned about the show, so are less and less willing to take the time to post at all.



I want to say that I find your reviews spot-on, and your desire to like this show, and to see it succeed, is obvious. Just among my group of friends, I am the only one still watching, and I've even apologized to a few for my earlier enthusiastic recommendation.

.

I am truly glad that families can watch this show together. I've just never seen poor writing as a prerequisite for family time at the telly. Had this show been originally marketed as a sort of live-action Barney, or Hannah Montana, I would not mind the drop off in quality at all. But it was marketed as a slick show, with complex characters, and actors were hired who are more than capable of portraying complexity so I guess that's what makes it feel like a bait-and-switch.



I know that you're a big girl, can take the heat, and get paid, hopefully well, to do so. But I do thank you for continuing to care enough about the show, its basic concept, and the skill of the cast, to critique it honestly. They are lucky to have you. Who knows? Maybe the writers will begin to pick it back up again, although I'm not gonna hold my breath that it will be anything consistent.



As for my friends, they are no longer an audience, and they won't be back. For me, it'll be watched on Hulu. Nevertheless, I do remain grateful to the show for introducing me to some actors, especially Lana and Robert, whose careers I will certainly continue to follow in the future.

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Well said.

The only thing I would add is that if the writers do NOT find a way to both satisfy and intrique without reducing the pace to near standstill, and the dialog to a level of intelligence that does not insult, they will lose their audience at the end of this season.

As I said before, each and every episode has had the same reservation stated over and over "I want to like it BUT...."
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Mary Margaret, David and Emma all annoy me now! What is up with this show? It started good and kept it going for a while, now it's getting progressively worse. Storybrook has now become the lamest and most stupid place on earth. For example when Emma tells Ruby that she has to get to the bridge before David is let out of the hospital, this somehow is extremely important to Emma: No time to lose.. WTF... Emma is in the freakin hospital, she could easily wait outside and follow David... So. Many. Inconsistancies. So. Little. Continuity.



The only thing this show has going for it now is the fairy tale world (and Robert Carlyle), but if it doesn't improve soon it will be canned, and not only by me...
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I have more problem with the whining Ruby than the returning Ruby. She was always strong and cool, not this oh-I'm-sure-I-can't-help lame.



By the way, we see almost more happy endings in Storybrook than in fairytale world...
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Does anyone else think that David is having blackouts and sometimes seems another person completely because he was "two" characters in the fairytale world? I mean, technically, there were two Prince Charmings, so he could be bipolar as David Nolan. Just a theory!
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But he wasn't actually 2 characters. He was one person pretending to be his twin brother. Which, I guess couls be confusing enough to give you psychological issues.
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I disagree that Ruby returning the the cafe was lame. It takes all sorts, and some sorts want their family. And I loved the twist that Red was the big bad wolf, That was genius. However framing Mary-Margret does just seem like one more stall in the plot. And I do agree that this show IS incredibly mean to it's viewers. Nothing has happened since Ghram died and yet I return week after week only to find my faithfulness being abused. They need to shape up quick cause summer hiatus is approaching and if it has a bad run-up to the end I certainly won't be back for season 2.
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Mary Margaret and David are annoying right about now. They seriously need to change something about them. As for "Nothing can happen to Mary Margaret" - why the hell not? She's kind of annoying and althought important back in the fairy tale world I feel she has fulfilled her destiny by having a child she doesn't remember. Emma is the savior for them and as far as I am concerned the fairy tale stories are in the past - so whatever happens to those characters in Storybrook is completely up to the writers. Doesn't make much of a difference if they are killed. The final conflict this show is moving towards and thus the only characters they cannot kill is between Emma, Rumpelstiltskin and the Evil Queen.



And yes: I second your motion: Please give us more of Robert Carlyle's character(s) and the Evil Queen.



Aside from being a filler episode I really liked the twist they gave the story about Red Riding Hood. The question I have is: If the hood kept her from turning why did she turn so often anyway? BTW, I never suspected what-was-his-name to be the werewolf, I thought it was granny - nice idea to have her loose the transformation due to old age but keep some of the abilities ;-)
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Granny did say that Red avoided wearing the cloak as much as she could get away with- Maybe she didn't really like being called "Red" all the time? It's a pretty fancy cloak compared to other villagers' clothes, so she probably got lots of snide comments- and if Granny spent the nest egg on it (wizards don't work cheap!) then there were probably things Red might have wanted that she couldn't get-"no money for that, girl"



If I thought they'd actually kill off a major character at this point, I'd consider setting up a pool- who, how, and which episode. Truth be told, I didn't think they'd actually kill off Graham when they did... So maybe I'd better not do that.
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This may have been the best episode yet! I loved how dark it was and the visuals were stunning!

I was glad to see Ruby return!

Emma needs some Ginkgo Biloba!

I don't want to find any body parts!

I enjoy the filler, but do miss Lana and Robert!

I don't really care, but I can't wait to see how things unfold!

Didn't see promo

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WTF!!It was a great episode or i guess you were watching this show while holding a notebook & a pen in your hand and writing this review cause now i bet you are really enjoying this show.

I was not disappointed of Ruby , at least @ the end she choose the right decision , she will get the cafe , get alot of money and still has alot of time for traveling! :P
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Has anyone suggested that Emma actually read the book aloud to each character?? Afterall, they are fairytales, meant to be read to someone??.
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We know Snow/Mary Margaret can't be convicted of murder for a couple of reasons. First, of course, she didn't do it (although you're a bit of an idealist if you think this is enough). Second, though, she can't leave Storybrooke, and as there is no prison in Storybrooke...



Come to think of it, how do they have lawyers or doctors in Storybrooke? There are neither law schools nor medical schools in Storybrooke... (Sure, Doc got HIS medical degree from a pickaxe... but the others?
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its part of the course. all of them transformed to something their not.

some of them became nuns (the fairies), some became doctors. since they dont remember who they are, it makes sense.
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!. I was disappointed though their talk did warm my heart :)

2. Figures *insert scoff here*

3. Um yea!

4. I do miss Robert but I think it's time for a major loss to Lana *Cackle!*

5. They're starting to annoy me which really bums me out

6. More misery for Mary Margaret, boo. But maybe there will be a spark between her and Mr. Gold?!
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This is kind of random but I was wondering if anybody knows if Lily is the only person who responds to the people who comment. I read her reviews for OUAT and Revenge and she responds to a lot of comments. I read Price and some of Tim because they review shows that I watch but I've never seen them comment back. Just curious
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Price responds frequently and acknowleges that he reads every comment. I've seen Tim respond as well. Actually I've seen a few people respond on occasion, not just Lily. I personally tend to notice that Lily and Price respond the most, but that's just my own personal observation.
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Price has done weeks where he responds to practically every comment. I've seen Tim respond as well. Seth, too.
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In my experience, currently Lily is the member of the staff that has responded in oh say the past yr.
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Lily- after these past few weeks, do you feel unloved? (As opposed to actually hated) You shouldn't. Agree or disagree, I find your comments well-written and humorous. I'm sure the slow pace is getting to most of us, but I have faith that they're serving the banquet in this particular order for a reason, so I grit my teeth and try to figure out why.



Red's story was dark enough that you couldn't have placed it next to "Skin Deep" (for example) without diluting some of its impact- the fluff in between certainly whetted our appetites for this episode. ("Dreamy" as sorbet?)



And sometimes I want to throw things at the TV too- isn't that what fandom is all about?
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Why would she feel unloved? It's her job to accept criticism...
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You must not work in customer service or tech support to ask that question...
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Staff
Luckily I cut my teeth taking over for Tim on True Blood reviews. That's a baptism by fire, because he was a legend at reviewing the show and people did not like the shift in tone initially. One of the first negative comments I ever got was the worst I have ever gotten, when someone wrote my True Blood reviews were "worse than the holocaust", but I'm lucky I got that horrible comment early on because it was so ridiculously awful it made me not take personal attacks seriously, and thats where I am now. Accepting criticism is not exactly my job description,its more accurate to say I'm here to start conversations- and where they go, its not up to me to control.
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In fact I usually come to tv.com to just read your OUaT reviews.

Keep up the good work :)

(and take over some more of my fav.shows :))
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I actually thought it was a pretty strong episode and quite enjoyable. I love how dark it's been getting. Red Riding Hood as the wolf was awesome.This discussion almost reminds me the type that take place on The Secret Circle recaps. Both are freshman shows that started things off with a bang. I think because they started off so strong the audience has unconsciously placed high expectations on the show when in all honesty their muddling through all the mistakes that freshman shows tend to make. The show IS writing to deliberately stretch out storylines and what not over the course of seasons, so the pay off is a bit frustrating to some.

-I was disappointed. For starters I was waiting a long while for some Ruby background and I loved it. I was so thrilled when she ended up working with Emma because Emma needs SOMEBODY to work with her in that place, but Ruby was good at it. I felt like it should have lasted longer. Just like I would have loved to have seen Ruby in the house with Emma and Mary Margeret...(Totally annoyed me that Emma who was taken in by Mary had the audacity to be reluctant to do the same for Ruby).

-I think because they haven't exactly narrowed down the time frame as to when Kathryn went missing it's hard to say what's going on in Emma's head.

-Ruby works in a diner in the middle of nowhere...she has to have seen what goes into the mystery meat. Toughen up tootsie

-Yes and Yes. I enjoyed the episode, an ensemble cast does have to venture out with the other characters. Besides one of my complaints at one point was wondering why all evildoing had to be directly related to Evil Queen or more specifically Rumple...so guess I'd be a hypocrite to criticize that now.

-They annoy me less than they did the two episodes before. And I still want them to be together. I actually think David blacking out could lead to some interesting things. I think I have a soft spot for that and the relation it may have not to his fairytale life but to his real one. He was in the military afterall...PTSD and all. David has annoyed me and has bordered on flat out unlikeable but I still have faith in his character.

-We'll get to see Henry for more than ten minutes.
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Was David in the military? I missed that. I'd thought the explanation for his coma was a car accident.



Ruby could definitely help Emma- our longhaired sheriff is in way over her head. I hope they will get to be friends even if they aren't roommates. (I laughed when I saw Emma's expression right after MM's offer- "3 girls, one bathroom? Do you know how long it takes to blowdry this hair?")





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I believe Kathryn mentioned it once when she was trying to jog his memory.



It just would have been so great seeing Ruby do more than prance around that diner in her boyshorts!
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She mentioned him having a buzz cut, but she didn't say anything about the military. That would raise a whole new set of problems for the "never allowed to leave Storybrooke" part of the show.
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I was a bit disappointed about Ruby returning to Granny's I would've stayed at the sheriffs... "Adventures with Lemurs" sounded like a nice title for a travel journal LOL!



If I were part wolf I do not think it would eff me up. But maybe if I were afraid about not understanding where my abilities come from and realizing that a normal person would be disturbed about the heart and maybe deep down I am not... I would be disturbed about not being disturbed... and pretend that I am actually disturbed about the heart. Don't know if I am making sense.



I so miss Lana & Robert! Hope they will be back soon!



David is getting on my nerves!



I did not get to see next week's promo the recording ending before that... sh*t!
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I get what you mean. What if for just a second it looked tasty? and then she got creeped out...or maybe she flashed back to Peter's death. Neither would make me want to go exploring for a little while, until I understood the ramifications.



Ruby being wolf without knowing it explains Granny's overprotectiveness. Wanting Ruby to do the books was a (belated) acknowledgement that Ruby was in fact becoming an adult, and needed to learn these things to be independent. I hope Ruby chose to return as a favor to Granny, rather than giving up on adventures completely.



We know Lana has a big episode coming up soon! But I adore watching Robert Carlyle- possibly more of the Storybrooke storyline? Shouldn't Mr Gold be responsible for "Mo's" hospital bills or something? And was he pissed that Leroy helped the nuns make their rent?
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Poor Red,



Alabaster cold and lifeless inside I remain

Courting disaster servant and master, hunter and hunted consumed I devour my prey

The thrill of the chase



Dark Heart

And it shall come to pass

Cloaked in the veil that remains

As shattered as my past

The tapestry of life is stained

I remain in my darkness in chains





Benedictum
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Look for the promo on youtube. I always do because I watch the episodes online (I live in England and OUAT isn't out over here yet. I LOVE the internet) so I never get to see the promo unless I watch it on youtube.
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http://www.smartercreativity.com/blog/2010/7/7/snow-white-retold-by-neil-gaiman-in-snow-glass-apples.html



Now THIS is an interesting twist to Snow's story!! I can only hope that the OUaT writers are of the same school.
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Wonderfully eerie, as Neil Gaiman so often is. Thanks, Chas!
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You're very welcome. An interesting prospective to say the least. Grimm's original features a pair of "shoes" for the evil queen, but I don't see that as a Storybrooke possible. So, time will tell.
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I feel like the writers of this show are for some reason thinking a normal season length of a show is about 10 times longer than it actually is. I love all your reviews, they make me feel like I should keep watching this show just so I can agree with them. But that's the only thing keeping me tethered to this criminally plot-less, unemotionally melodramatic show.



OuaT producers, give us something to hold on to! Throw us a life vest and make your show interesting for once! I want to like this show so hard.
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After thinking about this (probably waaaay too much)- I predict: (drumroll please)



1) Snow will attempt to kill EQ, who will not die- either because enchanters can store their hearts outside their bodies to prolong their lifespans, or because it's a lot harder to hit a moving target than most people think. ( Can YOU hit the mark with a longbow? I didn't think so. Henry IV had kids training at age 13 or so, to get good enough. And Snow didn't strike me as someone who hunted for fun)



2) IF the heart does belong to EQ (glad I'm not the only one who came up with that idea), then why is it at the Troll Bridge? Because that's where the EQ's lover was killed? or because that's the last place she'd think to look for it?



3) Ruby may have been scared back to Granny's not because the heart was too icky, but because seeing it jogged loose some memories of her wolfen existence (like killing Peter? and Granny defending her?) Ruby was almost predatory during girls' night out- I'm curious to see what she'll do during the next full moon! And if the wolf charm she got from Mr Gold's shop ever gets broken, Storybrooke look out.



4)The fuss about MM's trial will turn out to be a dream, in the best soap opera tradition. (You can't get a hearing for a parking ticket in 24 hours, let alone selecting a jury! At least, not since the 1800's)
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Interesting theory. I still think that Rumple is gonna turn out to be Henry's father. Don't ask me how. At any rate, We all know Mary Margaret isn't going to go to jail so I'm just waiting for further development. (nods)
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i dont think i would enjoy watching anything with you. Must you pull everything apart without giving the benefit of the doubt first? You being highly over dramatic, and those screen captures your stylized messages? I feel like im listening to whiny 16 year old girl. Im sure you could have made your point without sounding like a twit.
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Gosh I guess some people do not understand the meaning of critique...
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yea, i guess you don't either
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Hey, maybe they could do an update on "Rindercella and the Prancesome Hince"!!
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First, Bravo to Ron Underwood. Give him credit for making a spotlight shine for Meghan Ory. A big thumbs up for tha art direction as well. There is only so much a director can do however. The Storybrooke side of town was still stuck in the mud of stupidity and snail-trail slime moving the storyline to any progression. This is the fourth episode written (or at least overseen) by Jane Espenson. On that end, unfortunately, even Ory came off looking (can't bring myself to say BAD) less than perfect. I could understand Ruby sitting down with Granny and them both arriving at an understanding about their roles, how Granny was expecting to pass on a legacy. But do we (audience we) always have to make the leap of faith for this show??

Dave/MM was just BAD writing, start to finish. Emma is a total mess, and Henry is an afterthought for progression.

Questions:

1)Well, it sure did get warm everytime Ory was onscreen, so NO/ YES!!

2)I'm pretty sure she's leaving a bread-crumb trail to find her way home at this point.

3)No, seen worse.

4)I miss alot of of the MAIN storyline..Filler?? More like cotton candy, spun sugar, no substance!!

5)Well, we're gonna need some serious repair to David. From the neck UP!!

6)No worries for MM/Mr Gold is on the job!!
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Can we get someone new for OuaT reviews?

I'm not here to be annoyed by the impatience or interpretation of the article's author but to read thoughts about one of my most favored shows and maybe get a laugh once in a while.



It isn't said that Emma believes the prints are Marys, not even likely. Maybe it is the set up for her investigating the evil queen and finally getting proove that magic exists, or something equally awesome. You were wrong before when you thought she is arresting David now.

Also Emma was a Bounty Hunter. Not a policeman. If she gets the answers with contaminating a crime scene, who cares. If anyone is stupid it is Regina for letting her play Sheriff. Emmas focus is on talking to people, so what.

I'm not saying there aren't some inconsitensies, but srsly, stop hating.



And what is up with that "message" obsession? So when Stealthy died, did you take that as a message?, That you die if you help your friends? Or did you take Henry going to Emma in the beginning as a message? Run away from home as a kid and you might find happiness?



We don't really know a lot about the world or there characters, and so far we have not been disappointed by the writers, so let the story unfold before you shut it down.

People are gonna be reading your review if they want to watch the show and then you are showing it in this, very undeserved, bad light



That said,

Red, marry me. How awesome is her new look?
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What are you five? It's a review and that means that she doesn't always to think everything is perfect.... Especially when it's not.
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Maybe some of you apologists should recognize by the number of "thumbs up" Zelli42 got that, yeah, maybe there is something to the discomfort many of us have with Lily as the OuaT reviewer.



I understand critique, but I also understand tone. When the underlying tone of each review is negative, then the critique becomes something much more...it becomes a weekly hit piece.



This isn't a movie review where the reviewer tells us whether the movie is worth spending time and money on. This is supposed to be, I thought, a review of a TV show by a professional writer who is also a fan to be read by people who are fans and are, on balance, positive about the show.



I don't expect a sycophant and heaven knows there are things to criticize in each episode. And I do appreciate the humor and writing style. Just let me know every now and then that you LIKE the show. What comes through are the (many) reasons you DISLIKE the show.
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Apologists? Seriously? Wow. That's taking this whole meta discussion a bit too far for my taste.
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I guess if you want to share your love for the show then go to a Forum and make sure it's called " We unconditionally love OUaT" and leave the analysis to people who can actually express an opinion...
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Why are you here if you don't like the review? there are many kiss ass Ouat reviews out ther go comment on one of them.
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I like you.
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"so far we have not been disappointed by the writers, so let the story unfold before you shut it down."

What's this WE stuff, paleface???
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If you dont like the show, WRITE YOUR OWN! i'd love to judge it. ;-)
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If you don't like the REVIEW, write your own. I TOO, would love to judge it.
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1. I will be if she stays there but i think it would be cool if down the line she goes to be a detective. I mean they had to close things off with grandmother somehow but still why can't she run the diner and be emma's sidekick? It is possible for both and not only that why would you give us this brave daring character and then make her such a wuss like omg i cant handle making someone's day bad....lets go back a few episode where she practically told cinderella to cheat on her bf. I'm sorry it just kind of undermines her character by alot, but like i said i think she will get bored; after all she is half wolf.

2. Emma is just not using her damn head- like when regina walks in and is like what are you doing here and practially shoves her out! she should have been like I found him at the crime scene, he's a suspect for murder etc. (even though she knows otherwise) and she doesn't even say anything to retaliate what Regina says even when she says (dont you have better things to do than accuse people of murder) when Regina was the one who told emma to arrest anyone whose a suspect. It would have been a perfect time to call her out on her bullshit in front of david but no we get nothing...again...except hair...and hot looking david (the only good part of that scene)

3) No it wouldn't why do writers constantly think every normal person would be upset i mean maybe a little but so frantic that you are just going to quit and be like i can't handle this! Especially if shes part werewolf I mean she could have at least liked the smell of it something weird that would give her an indication of her past but no she's all like omg! she should have been upset maybe but not so frantic.

4)I liked this filler up until the very end when red is like omg the real world is scary i may have to mess someones day up. Well guess what if you don't cook someones food right that messes up their day. If you think running a restaurant is happy all the time...good luck! And i miss rumple!!! Reginas the same like every episode now she's just like emma in some cases. Rumple well he is just pure awesomness!

5) They're okay i mean there is not much you can do with the "it " couple its like greys anatomy meridith and shepard once they kissed you know where that ends and all the bullshit thats going to come with it because it has to be a rule that the main couple can't be together for at least three four seasons..jeesh people don't you know?yep it's not contrived at all

6) Same bullshit...seriously may really not watch this once the season's done if it doesn't pick up, fillers are great! if you know you make the characters interesting and don't mess them up. They can't be one way one minute and another way the next i mean there is only so many bipolar characters on the show...really c'mon show me something dark and interesting and like you said lily in so many words satisy me a little! It's like having really bad sex and its all do to your partner who tries hard but just cannot satisy you enough. That's right this show so far=really bad sex. SO! im done ranting but seriously man up Ouat!
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I said fantastic twice in the same sentence.. Don't mind me. I also wanted to add: was the time Kathryn disappeared when MM was lying in bed? Because Regina is definitely going to play the you-are-not-objective-you'd-say-anything-for-a-friend-card and no one can corroborate the story. It's still stupid, because everyone knows MM is not going to jail and it's never going to fly, but I think that's the reasoning behind it.



As a general note; for once in my life I'd like to see a major charactor to have a chance of going to jail or actually dying, when it's believable. I don't think I'd be satisfied with the experience of tv unless it shies away from being so terribly obvious about major characters. I mean, didn't Hitchcock already do that in the fifties or somewhere around on Psycho? Learn, people!
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Then you should watch Charmed. :3
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I absolutely LOVED the Red-storyline, a fantastic take on the fairytale and Meghan Ohry is just fantastic.

That said, I can't stand the Storybrook part of OUaT anymore. I want Lana Parilla to do something substantial, for them all to smarten up, and for the plot to move the damned hell along. I'm sorry Ruby isn't going to do anything with her life other than work in a diner, especially considering the fact that she is a natural tracker. Guess it was meant to bring her and Granny to a close where they couldn't in the fairytale-story, but come on, writers, you have heard of extended story arcs, right?
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I like your reviews, Lily. Even when I don't agree with them (for instance, I really liked last week's episode and Belle + Rumple's one) I think you make interesting observations and valid points.
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1- Yes, I was disappointed. I knew she wouldn't leave town, so that was almost like a moot point, but I thought she could've become the Sheriff's feisty secretary/bloodhounds. After all, the Sheriff's department has neither a secretary, nor a K9 unit...



2- I don't know I don't remember that epsode. I don't remember anything. Hey! I could be sheriff od Storybrooke!



3- If I were part or entirely werewolf, I think I'd eat it.



4- Not using an actor the caliber of Robert Carlyle when you have him under contract (something Rumple adores, by the way) is a waste of talent. And Lana is the fairest of them all. Miss both, but enjoy some of the filler too.



5- Totally annoying. I'd rather watch Charming and Fiona from Shreck.



6- My predictions is that if you start including promo comments here you'll make most people, who don't watch promos, very angry.
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When Ruby returned to Granny's, I was neither disappointed in her decision, nor warmed. I hadn't expected her to move elsewhere - if she had, the plot would have spun off on another tangent, and I was hoping that it wouldn't. I was thankful that it didn't start a new series of questions involving a minor character, ultimately removing the spotlight from the major characters like Regina and Rumplestiltskin. However, I was mildly disappointed in the writers. Yet again, they managed to focus an entire episode on something that has nothing to do with the overall plot. I want Emma to find out more about the strange happenings in Storybrooke! I want Regina's secret asylum to be uncovered! I want theories on how the characters can escape the human world! I want them to get their memories back! I don't want to hear side stories about pointless characters every episode, while dragging Cathryn's disappearance much past it's expiry date. For the love of god.

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I think the writer's forgot about the fact that Emma was right next to Snow when Cathryn went missing. That, or they're purposely making her as stupid a character as one can possibly be. Not only that, but Emma's ability to detect a lie was, once again, brought up in this episode. If she was such a human lie detector, she would see through Sidney's deception. She would see through Regina's lies. And she would definitely see that Snow couldn't be the killer. But what can we expect from an average woman with absolutely no police force training?

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Even if I wasn't part werewolf, finding a human heart might startle me, but it wouldn't eff me up forever. If it was attached to a dying, headless body, maybe, but not in a neat little box. We've all had biology class, we've all played with human organs. Why is seeing a human heart so bad? It isn't necessarily Cathryn's.

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I miss Robert Carlyle more than anything (big Rumbelle fan! <3), but I miss Lana, too. I cannot express how tired I am of all the filler episodes. OUaT started out alright, with a plot that continued from episode to episode, but the writers have focused so much on every character's back story that they have completely butchered the main gist of the show. I don't even know what's supposed to happen anymore. Emma doesn't seem to be looking for much besides Cathryn's now-heartless body and her presumed killer, but how does this relate to the Fairy Tale world at all? I don't understand why the writers have found it necessary to dedicate each episode entirely to a new, useless character. Dreamy and Nova and Mary Margaret's candles? Unless they were all somehow crucial parts of the Queen's evil plan (to use fairy dust found in a mine shaft to produce millions of candles), I don't see any relevance to, well... anything.

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I didn't like David from the beginning. In my opinion, he's a shallow, immature douche, who wouldn't be able to pull up his big boy pants if it killed him. Sucking up the instant dislike I felt for him, the first episode between David and Mary Margaret was alright. Hell, I even liked his Fairy Tale land personality. But as Cathryn became more and more of a plot tool, David/Prince Charming became dumber and dumber. Even though Mary Margaret finally made a decision and dumped his sorry ass, she still obviously has feelings for him (must be his great memory, punctuality, or card-picking ability that got to her heart). All in all, the writer's took a cute concept, tied a noose around its head, and have been dragging its bloody corpse from the back of their Jeep for the past six episodes.

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I predict an episode slightly more plot oriented, but filled with 1/2 Mary Margaret/David stupidity, 1/4 Robert and Lana (in order to keep us sane), and 1/4 Emma's obnoxiously tight pants and stupid deductions. And don't forget Henry - once a key element to the plot, now just a bartering tool so Regina can talk to those in jail. What a long way we've come! (not)
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I agree that they need to move the plot forward SOON! Your comment about the hearts though: I don't know where you went to school, but unless you're in medical school, I don't think anyone's busting out human hearts to play with. Usually it's sheep hearts. Also, I think considering that the heart she found most likely belongs to someone she knows, she can be a bit more freaked out (not enough to cut out any travel or life plans though). Also, general question: why does Emma have fingerprint records for everyone in Storybrooke?? Do they all have criminal records?
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I wasn't disappointed that she returned. It didn't seem like she was giving up, but rather that she realized that the place she belongs is with Granny (yay, family!). I'm kind of surprised that she didn't realize at first that Granny was prepping her for running the place (though I thought it'd be for when Granny died. Thankfully, she just plans to retire!)



She could've assumed it was after she went to sleep. It's not like they were up all night. Just kind of wish they'd let Emma at least LOOK like she's sorta competent with at least a quick line, Mary Margaret: But Emma, you were with me the night she disappeared! Emma: Yes, but we fell asleep at some point. At least I did... *accusing stare*



Hell yes



Filler! I was actually getting really tired of Rumpelstiltskin being involved in almost every single episode. it's like anytime anyone had a problem (or a baby!) there he was, contract in hand. I'm glad we get to see what else happens in FTL.



They're boring. :( Since it's obvious it's going to happen eventually, it's just more of a waiting game (which is why I'm ok with filler, because at least it's something else to watch other than fake drama that can never go anywhere). You hit the nail on the head by saying that they're working backwards now.



I have no idea how they're going to put Snow into a homicidal rage and then just take her out of it again. They've already screwed up David Nolan, if they screw up Snow too, then there's just no hope for me enjoying either version of this couple anymore. :(
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I was not disappointed in the fact that she went back but it happened to fast. Granted, finding a human heart in a box might hasten up the finding yourself journey but I still would have liked to have seen the three girls hanging out like normal ppl for an episode or two.



Emma is like the WORST sheriff ever.



Of course it would mess anyone up...except maybe Emma who seems not to have a fully functional thought process...maybe her hair is growing into her brain now...

I do miss Lana and Robert...Mr.Gold is my fave character and I want to know more about those two and their fairytale alter egos.



I am so over David and MM. The writers have seriously screwed up this storyline that I no longer care at all. David has no guts and MM can't accept that ppl don't like homewreckers. Own the relationship and what you did, eff everyone else and tell David to grow a pair and stop acting like some lame teenage boy who can't make a decision to save his life!

I predict that Snow will WANT to kill the Queen but of course will realize that to do so would make her as bad as the Queen so she won't go thru with it. I think Rumpelstiltskin needs to come in and give everyone a dose of common sense.
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-Disappointed. I wanted Emma to have an equally unfit for her job sidekick. They could solve crimes in heels, full makeup, and hair that takes an hour to style... ;)



-She's a buffoon! I'm honestly surprised she remembers her own name at this point. She always looks like she's thinking so hard--about everything!! Maybe her curling iron fried her brains.... (ok, 2 hair jokes already, that's my my limit)



-Ummm....yeahh.....



-So sick of the filler. Where is the show I fell for the first few weeks???????? OUAT has devolved in utter crap--seriously guys, be honest with yourselves.... the writing is ATROCIOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!



-I want them dead. In fact, let's bring some zombies over from AMC, and set them loose on Storybrooke. Survival of the fittest, biznitches!



-Filler, filler, and more filler..... Did I mention the story won't actually advance? cuz it wont. It never f'n does....
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The show you fell for starred an obnoxious little boy, you can keep it and him.
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Are you saying its better now with less Henry, or has just plain always sucked?
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Maybe the highs were higher early on, but the lows were lower.
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I liked this episode and the stoy of Red Riding Hood surprised me at the end.

I wasn't disapppointed with Ruby. Sometimes you long for things you don't have and in some way that same longing makes you undervalue what you really have. Sometimes when you see that dream or desire is about to happen or there's a possibility it can occur, you realize that you really have what you want. I think that is exactly what happened with Ruby and that doesn't mean she was weak or fickle.



I miss Gold and Regina for sure. Their characters are great and when they are on screen the show is wow but I don't necessarily think their absence means the level of the episode drops or because they are not on the episode it automatically becomes a filler.



MM and David relationship doesn't annoy me, I agree it's better when they are in the fairy tale world (I personally like it pretty much) but I also think it's because the characters are pretty different from their own selves. In one world they are themselves with their good and bad things and they have free will whilst in the real world they have no memory and they are dispossessed of their own essence. And I think David's blackouts are an unconscious response to that constriction of their inner being, he is looking because he doesn't fit where he is and looks for what he lacks.



I'm longing for next episode. I have great expectations on Snow being badass. And we have more Charming!! :)





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Yeah, this series is kind of more eye candy than anything else now.



I applaud the creative twists on classic tales, but the acting is noticeably weak in parts of every episode and the writers are edging too much toward "it's a fairy tale, don't think too much" and not enough toward a mysterious sci-fi/fantasy small town drama. I'm still watching it, but only on hulu, when I have the time.



What I want to know is, can the mailman ever leave town? What about delivery trucks? I realize I'm not really supposed to think about those things, but they're making such a darn big deal about the "CANT LEAVE TOWN OMG!!!!!" plot device that now I can't HELP but think about it.



I also miss Carlyle.
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Incidentally "can't leave [town with no prison]" means no one can actually be convicted of a felony. Stakes lowered. You're welcome.
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And here I am again, responding to one of these reviews. I don't know why I still read them, maybe it's a morbid curiosity, I dunno. Maybe I like to punish myself? Maybe that's it.



- Not at all. Ruby belongs with Granny. And, in my opinion, she looked AMAZING when she came back!! Much better than she normally does. Oh, and Angelina 2.0? No, not at all. More like Kathy Ireland 2.0.



- I'm sure she does. The fact that the fingerprints were Snow's probably came as a shock to her, and she'll come to her senses.



- Probably, since she doesn't realize that she's a werewolf. (How can you be PART werewolf? She's a werewolf, no part. She turns at the full moon.)



- I miss Mr. Gold. Regina annoys the hell out of me, the way she has been recently. And I love what you refer to as filler. Obviously, you think the show is the "Mr. Gold and Regina Hour", and everything else just filler. I see "Once Upon a Time", a show about all the fairy tale characters in our world. So, they're not filler.



- Of course I care that they get together. They do not annoy me. Other people annoy me.



- I don't like to predict about future episodes, I like to be surprised. However, I think we'll see something that shows that Mary Margaret didn't kill Cathryn.
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Thanks, Lily! Awesome, funny and straight to the point review.

... I was deeply disappointed. But Ruby's a fairy tale person, that is how they role - or don't.



... of course she remembers - but it's unclear when the murder occured. So technically MM is not of the hook.



... Not really. And how can anyone identify a human heart as such in 0.2 sec ???



... This "filler" was enjoyable but I miss Lanert or Rona as you may call "it".



... I must confess: they do annoy me in Storybrooke since ep.1. In fairytale world Snow is awesome and Charming all right.



... I download the eps - there was no promo in the end - WHY? What's going to happen? Is Charming killing himself? Emma gets a haircut? What is it - tell me!
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Oh, and in response to "And how can anyone identify a human heart as such in 0.2 sec ???" it's easy, if you've ever seen what a human heart looks like. If I opened a box and it had a heart in it, I'd know immediately what it is.
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Google is your friend.



http://www.spoilersguide.com/once-upon-a-time/episode-16-heart-of-darkness-promo/
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I actually liked the ep, loved the slight twist to the Red Riding Hood story, but it occurred to me that if the writers/producers want to keep the show on the air, they might want to tell each fairy tale as a separate story. Unless they have an ulterior motive to combine "Little Red Riding Hood" with "Peter and the Wolf." Here's hoping the payoff is worth it!
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Another negative review. Surprise, surprise. Among the many things Lily wrote with which I disagree, this was the most blatant:



"Just put Lana and Robert in a room across from each other and make your audience happy FOR ONCE, FOR ONCE UPON A TIME!"



Guess what? They make me happy every week!
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You guys are every bit as biased as you claim Lily is. Her review is not a negative one; it's a mixed one, which is much more intelligent. She starts out by mentioning that it's such a mashup of bad and good that it's hard to organize. If anything, by noting both sides, she shows a lack of bias.
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And wasn't Lily the one who bashed the one episode the focused on Regina and Gold's backstory- the Sleeping Beauty one? She said it was the worse one yet. Conflicting messages. -scratches head-
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I agree with you. I've enjoyed every episode of the show, and don't understand why Lily even watches this anymore. Someone else should be doing the reviews, someone that isn't so biased against the show, as it seems from her writing.
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Oh for God sake, she's supposed to review the show and not everything is going to be perfect or considered great.
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Hmn... I understand all the points made above. I personally liked this episode, mainly because Lil' Red was my fave fairy tale as a kid and I wanted to see the twist they put on it. It didn't actually surprise me that Red was the wolf because I knew it wasn't going to be her boyfriend Peter (because Peter was the original name of the woodsman who saved Lil' Red in the fairy tale) although I almost thought it was going to be Granny (what with the bite mark on her arm and her badass attitude to Red leaving the house) but I did think it was a good episode. As for Kathryn's heart being found in a box? Well that was... not surprising at all. She's probably still alive somewhere to be honest. I get the feeling that we're not getting the whole story. As for Mary Margaret getting arrested? I wasn't too concerned to be honest. I'm just waiting for that moment when Mr Gold comes along and goes "I'll totally get you off this rap for a price." I totally miss Robert Carlyle. He's too awesome for words. But Lana's Character is WAY annoying. Regina is just... irritating. I prefer the Evil Queen. Although they are the same person (What with Regina having all her memories) The Evil Queen is all out in the open and that. So it's all more fun for me to watch. As well as her dodgy outfits which I love to laugh at. And yes, David Nolan has a severe case of stupid. He needs to go and get therapy, or go back to school. One of the two. I miss Prince James! Anywho... that's my opinion for now.
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This episode was a lot better then previous one, mostly because of Meghan Ory, she was a feast for eyes so I didn't mind for lack of story. Give us more Ruby.
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i know someone may have asked this before but imma ask anyway.

they said somewhere in the first few episodes that true loves kiss can break any curse, right.

they further went on to prove this using Graham/huntsman kiss with Emma, and the rumple and belle kiss.

we all now that MM and David are each others true love right, haven't they kissed enough times on the show for them to break their own curse and remember at least a smidgeon of the snow and prince lives they had?
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The writers talked about this during OUAT's Paley Fest panel. It is not true love's kiss that breaks this particular curse. That is why Mary Margaret and David can kiss all they want, it won't make much of a difference. The key to breaking the curse is Emma. That's why the Huntsman started to get flashes of who he really was even before he kissed her and it also explains why Ashley and Thomas started to remember who they really are/want to be once Emma stepped up for them and helped them keep their baby. True love's kiss has nothing to do with it. Which makes sense. Rumple calls this "the curse to end all curses" and Regina had to sacrifice her own father for it to work - it would be a bit lame and as the Queen I would certainly want my money back if a simple kiss were all it took for the curse to break. ;-)
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Part of me feels like the curse will be broken by Emma when she kisses Henry. (Of course not a romantic kiss, but true love's kiss nonetheless.) At Paleyfest, Ginnifer Goodwin said that when she was told how the curse was broken it made perfect sense. This is the only type of true love I can think of that wouldn't lead to kissing right off the bat. It can be drug out for many seasons - maybe at some point Henry will get in an accident or something and be presumed dead, and Emma will rush to the hospital and let that wall completely down and just react as a true mother would, kissing their child goodbye. Bam - curse broken, Henry healed, happy endings for everyone.
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There seems to be a trend at TV.com (among other sites) to get TV reviewers who don't really like the shows they are assigned to reviewing, or at best tolerate them. That way, the reviewer can generate page hits by posting snarky, negative reviews that generate discussion as opposed to a review from someone who enjoys the show.



When your show is the Event, sure, snark away. OUaT has been a hit from day one, has a huge audience of people who love it and is guaranteed a second season. So why the snark? Clearly, this reviewer isn't seeing the same things as the rest of us.



More often than not, the criticism seems to be more along the lines of "they should be doing this instead of that" or "there isn't enough x" where x is a specific character, a reveal, a new mystery or a type of story. I disregard such reviews out of hand usually, as to me it's like complaining that the Godfather wasn't funny enough or that there weren't enough guitar riffs and growled vocals in the latest Madonna album. You need review the show for what it is, not what you want it to be.



Do MM and David annoy me? Less than the review telling me they should.
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I love when someone comes into a review without having read anything else of mine and tells me how negative I am. After watching and reviewing every single episode of this show, I've given negative reviews to I think TWO of them. If being negative is anglin' for clicks, then you'd think I'd do it more often. As a matter of fact, I sit down hoping the episode wil be marvelous because I have to write, as a matter of principle, my honest reaction to the show and when its a bad one, I'm guaranteed to get a bunch of comments like yours, which seems less like you defending the show with valid points that counter mine, and more like you attacking the idea of criticism itself. Ironically, your comment is doing exactly what you're attacking me for doing: telling a site dedicated to intelligent criticism of TV that it should take off its thinking cap and just enjoy the ride and replace all thoughtful critique with "IT GREAT!" ::: that's not what reviews are. Reviewing the show for what it is is exactly what I'm doing: its trying to take a dark turn by threatening a character we know it can't hurt and that is frankly boring. A cool arc with Red Riding Hood resolved with her current day incarnation deciding not to travel anymore,that's a really negative message. If you can refute those points, feel free, but I don't think you can.
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Criticism is of course valid... when it's valid criticism. But the amount of time you've spent criticizing Emma's hair makes me wonder how valid your criticism is. As for the "message" this episode, I wonder if you despised Wizard of Oz for the same reason. But as for the specifics here: I didn't get that message. I got "it's good to reconcile with the people who love you and take care of you" as well as "OMG, she's cursed!" The curse makes her not act like she would normally. red was adventurous and wanted to explore and that made her happy, so of course cursed Ruby is going to be the opposite of that.



My problem with your recent reviews (and it's been far more than just the last 2) is that you are basing your comments on what you want the show to be rather than what it is. It's "The Godfather wasn't funny enough" complaint. It may be accurate, but it isn't valid. You have repeatedly lambasted the show for showing a small town ostracize MM for being a home wrecker when they didn't even know who David was 6 months ago completely ignoring the fact that it's not personal - judgmental townsfolk don't care whose marriage MM broke up, just that she broke up a marriage as well as have no idea (like the rest of us) what the time situation was in the town prior to Emma's arrival. The people have been there for years but time hasn't moved and no one has aged and no one can remember how they met or how they got there. It's a weird, magical town, and you keep trying to apply real world logic. Real world logic simply doesn't apply in Storybrooke and thus neither does criticism for not following real world logic.



So shows should never threaten main characters because we know nothing is going to happen to them. So we shouldn't worry when Beckett & Castle get captured by the bad guys because we know they will be rescued? We shouldn't worry about Quarrel trying to frame Rayland for murder because we know Rayland will not be going to jail? We shouldn't worry about Steve McGarett trapped in Korea because we know he'll be back in Hawaii next episode? Threatening the main characters is what drama is all about. It's not about *if* they get out of the predicament, (they're main characters, we know they will) it's about *how* and what gets revealed in the process.



As for whether I can refute your points or not, the arrogance of a critic saying you don't think I can? Because yours is the only valid opinion of the show? wow.
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You're the one who just spent two long paragraphs trying to tell someone her opinion isn't valid. Good luck with that approach; it's always worked wonders for me. Lily doesn't need me to defend her, obviously, but the blatant hypocrisy in your last sentence was so hilarious I just had to say something. Or is it cognitive dissonance? Either way, things which are the opposite of what you expect are funny. So your last little paragraph was like the punch line to a joke with a real long setup. I'm sure it was unintentional, but thanks for the laugh.
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Mary Margaret and David as themselves are nothing if not whiny, annoying, pathetic characters, not a patch on snow and charming. But isn't that the point? You're 100% better as a person if you know who you are, what you want and have a sense of self. They're lost in the woods and until they find something to grab onto, something to feel in control of, things should change. Having Mary Margaret grow her hair long or get extensions may seem superficial but it's one defining characteristic that is different from snow. Have something that reminds you of who you are and you're on your way to being that way again.

Having the sheriff as your alibi is a touch of genius. Shame, as you say, they don't seem to remember it. The only thing is MM can't deny they are her fingerprints and inside a buried box containing a heart. Facts are facts.

I liked Ruby returning but she should have kept a part-time post at the Sheriffs. She could have done both.

I want Snow and Charming together. MM and D aren't ready to be together until they are Snow and Charming, and everything that makes them them.

Good to see a demented side to Snow, can't wait for next week.

Lana and Robert will be back, good to under use than overuse - believe me.
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I see your point, but I'm not ready to put all blame on the curse. I did like their Storybrooke personas during the first half of the season and I felt their story was somewhat relatable. I also understand that the writers are taking their time with giving them back parts of their fairytale personas since they are two of the main characters, but they need to come up with a better strategy to stall this process. Because right now it just bores and annoys me and makes me lose interest in their story, which definitely wasn't the case a bunch of episodes ago. I don't have a problem with the curse affecting them, but I find the way it is written increasingly unappealing.
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I think this episode was better than last week's. The fairytale land story was much stronger than the Storybrooke part of the episode though. The Snow White and Red friendship was a real plus and while I did see the twist with the big bad wolf coming, I still enjoyed the way the writing lead up to it. And Werewolf!Ruby killing Peter was just plain sad.

I fail to care about Mary Margaret and David in Storybrooke though. Too much contrieved drama and the show is trying too hard to push their "true love" and their role as poor victims down our throats. It has gotten to the point where it has the opposite effect on me and I just dislike them and their "poor us, why can't we be together" act. The writers need to remember that everyone knows they'll get their happily ever after anyway and it's the journey there that counts. And right now this journey is one aspect I don't like about the show anymore.

I do miss Lana and Robert. They're the strongest actors on the show and it took Lana one seemingly insignificant scene in this episode to prove this once more. But I understand that the show has to give the actors a break every once in a while. They're playing two characters at the same time and Rumple and Regina seem to have their hands in everyone else's stories. Lana's and Robert's schedules must be insane. They deserved a break, but episodes that lack one or even both of them always end up reminding me that they bring in a huge amount of what makes this show appealing to me as a viewer.
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Think this show is very poorly written and doesnt excite me to watch. It's too slow, it's way over it self and seems like it does't have anywhere to go.
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Unlike Lily, whose comments are way too harsh, I actually loved this episode and last week's episode, too. The unexpected twist of Red being the wolf was brilliant. I also loved Granny being quite the bad-ass, Red leaving the diner, then her and Granny reconcilng at the end (Yeah, I said it!); basically, everything seemed to work just fine.



Look, Lily, what you seem to be forgetting is the SPELL that the evil queen cast over all the characters and Storybrooke. I'm sure they'd love to stand up to her and tell her off, etc. but the CURSE prevents them from doing so! Where the freak have you been to forget that major plot point! People seem weak and basically suffer around her because its exactly what the spell was intended to do. We, the audience, should see this and be mad, but should also look forward to the day that they fight back, cause you know its gonna happen, but just don't know when.



Also, back off the writers, who are doing a great job with this show. Your complaints about Emma are way off base. You really think that Emma believes Mary-Margaret is guilty given what you said?! Seriously?! Also, you think Emma believes she has the power to "tell if a person is lying" just because she repeats it?! That's total bullcrap and you know it!!! It's simply something she says as some kind of a poignant punchline. She doesn't really believe it! Also, what's your obsession with Mr. Gold and Regina, like they're the only two people in this show? Hello, they may know what's going on, but that mere fact affects every good, innocent character around them. They're not inconsequential! They have just as much meaning in this show as Gold and Regina!



I think David's blackouts are genuine, not nonsense like you think they are. That possibly could be his heart in that box. They happen just as someone he knows randomly disappears. Can't you conceive that he's being set up too? Geez!!



I, for one, love the slow-burn pacing of this show and look forward to the rest of the season, unlike others.
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I think we all know the day the characters are going to "fight back"- season five. Supposedly, Emma's mere appearance would have gone some distance in dissolving the curse, but instead she replaces police work with "gut instincts" (Why do you think Emma doesn't believe she can tell when people are lying, sine she's said it super seriously it five times while interviewing potential murder suspects? Even Sidney Glass had to give her a lecture that she wasn't psychic and had to value facts over her s0-called super power, and if you just assume that because you think the writers wouldn't lean on something that weak, then you're giving the writers too much credit)

David's blackouts are "genuine" and I think its the conceit of the whole show that everyone is being set up, but i am so tired of David lying, being horrible to Mary Margaret (gave her wrong valentine's day card) and now, wandering around the forest like a zombie- at a certain point the writers have to give you reason to care about characters other than you're "supposed to" and David has gone from being a likable coma victim to a heartless liability. I like relatable, intelligent, interesting characters, and right now storybrooke is choc-a-bloc with dummies and victims.
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That's exactly my point with the curse. The people in Storybrooke are not idiots, but victims to Regina's curse. How can you not care about people who've been cursed just for the mere fact that their happiness makes some freaking evil queen jealous and petty?! Most of those characters have probably never met the evil queen/Regina, yet are being punished because of their implied "happiness".



To me, David is very likeable. I don't blame him one bit for what he's doing to Mary-Margaret. Once again, its the curse! Someday, they will realize who they are to each other, but this spell is making it extremely difficult, turning the smallest situations into overblown conspiracies, ie the wrong Valentines day Card. Until this spell is broken, David, MM, and others will continue to suffer, making them victims by someone else's choice and not by their own, which gives me great reason to care about them.



Emma should use gut instincts given that sometimes the facts presented to her add up to set-ups. I truly think the writers are just using the whole "I can tell when a person is lying" as a ploy, or some kind of a poignant line. She can say it as "super seriously" as she wants, but I'm simply not buying she believes it because like you said, Sidney lectured her on this, and I think she took it to form.
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This raises an interesting point - is the curse simply an overarching feeling of disappointment, gloom, and emptiness in this town, or does it affect specific and individual interactions and occurences? Did the curse literally make David pull out the wrong card? Or did it instead just make him a careless person who is prone to do things like that? Is there any autonomy to these characters at all? If they take a crap at 2:15 and miss a call from their true love, is that the curse? Or just last night's Chinese? How far into the minutiae of life does this spell reach?
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