Once Upon a Time "Welcome to Storybrooke" Review: Open Your Heart to Me (Also Can We All Start 'Shipping Emma and Regina?)

Once Upon a Time S02E17: "Welcome to Storybrooke"


I was very worried that last night’s St. Patrick’s Day episode of OUAT would involve the Charmings poking around Mr. Gold’s shop, finding a blue moon, purple horseshoe, green clover, and summoning a leprechaun to Storybrooke to steal all of the town’s milk or something. 

Instead, we got a very unique episode, with a fleeting glimpse of Jamie Dornan (my sweet sexual vanilla), a Groundhog Day-esque framing of Regina’s experience of the Storybrooke curse, and a character actually trying to straight-talk his way through the emotional bog that this show's rivalries and unforeseen familial connections have us all mired in. I’m talking, of course, about Gold fasking Regina just to let shit slide this once.

Bless the writers’ hearts, Gold brought up, word-for-word, what every fan has been screaming in their head lo this last season: What good has come of Regina’s insane feud with Snow White and her crazy-boring Storybrooke curse? And the show went all the way back to 1983 to illustrate that nothing positive has grown of this madness. Besides thorough bonings from Jamie Dornan (which were going on in FTL anyway) and a sleek haircut, Regina was just as trapped in the curse as her victims. I appreciated that they illustrated the cyclical nature of time in cursed Storybrooke, even if it was just a cheap excuse to put Meghan Ory in not one but a baker’s half-dozen of ho outfits. Round of applause for Meghan for being able to pull off corset-tie thigh-high boots! That's an accomplishment few can boast.

Regina is easily the most complicated character on OUAT: She’s evil, but much more likable than most of the good guys. She’s shrewd and powerful but insanely dumb about how people work. It’s almost too much to ask the audience to believe that Regina could be as dense about basic human behavior and socialization as she was in this episode. Like, FTL may have had peasants and weird fashions and floppy hats, but from what we’ve seen, relationships were no different there than they are on Earth. In trying to ingratiate herself with the little boy who wandered into town, Regina showed all the emotional logic of a space alien.

Which is part of why she’s now BY FAR the saddest character on the show, cursed with an inability to tell her ass from her elbow, emotionally speaking. It’s 99 percent Lana Parrilla’s depth as an actress, but Regina communicates this profound loneliness in an incredibly sympathetic way, and last night was another huge redeeming moment for her, as she refused to both kill Snow or entrance Henry. 

The more Regina develops as this three-dimensional, fallen-angel archetype, the more perfect the idea becomes of Regina and Emma coming together… that way. Oh yes, that way. Guys, think about it: Emma is the savior, she’s the literal essence of true love, and the person who needs the transformative nature of true love the most in this series is so obviously Regina. And let’s be real, those two actresses have so much damn chemistry. The show is always at its best when they share the screen.

Plus, a lesbian main character romantic plotline on a mainstream network drama is not the commercial impossibility it once was. To its credit, ABC recently bought a pilot about two moms raising a family of foster kids together and I just want to say: Please go there, OUAT. It would be so seriously epically romantic, and it could create such crazy conflicts (Mary Margaret, for instance, might freak out about being mother-in-law to her stepmother) which would be so much more interesting than Ethan Embry hatching a viral video campaign.

Because yes, Ethan Embry officially has his quotient of revenge plot/parental separation drama backstory—a backstory cemented by the reveal of a LEATHER BOONDOGGLE KEYCHAIN. Dun dun DUNH!

You can’t be a character on this show and not have had your parent cruelly separated from you/killed before your eyes/turned into a darling wooden puppet. Seriously, go down the line, every single character is hauling around a steamer trunk full of biological mommy/daddy baggage. (Or in this case, a literal boondoggle. Which his father gave to him so he’d always be with him? Crafty, dad. Crafty and crappy.) 

So Ethan’s going to revenge his father, I guess, by bringing the real world into Storybrooke! Except Regina can apparently hide Storybrooke really easily and also the world doesn’t care. Oh, you’ve got magical phone videos you say? Well, that’s great, but no one cares. Remember that meteor that crashed into Russia and all the news about it was subsumed in less than eight hours by One Direction gossip? Yeah: No one gives a shit about magical things in real life for more than five hours. Its called a news cycle.


And finally, Snow’s extreme, suicidal depression about killing a woman who was out to destroy, um, every member of her family… I was a child of the '90s, and in the '90s women were encouraged not to be victims. Take self-defense classes! Be, be, aggressive! Fight back! Jennifer Lopez has had ENOUGH! Snow herself slaughtered a passel of knights in a bloodbath not unlike John Cleese’s wedding massacre in Monty Python’s The Holy Grail.

But killing Cora got Snow so depressed and regretful that she asked Regina to pull out her heart and crush it? Um, aren’t you the same lady who karate-chopped the Mad Hatter straight out a window? And then there was that weird telenovela moment where Regina was crying because she realized in a way that she had won because Snow now has a couple black pixels in her heart and Snow was crying because she realized Regina wasn’t going to kill her and that was the worst revenge of all and then Regina shoved her heart back in and Snow went cross-eyed like a cartoon character punched in the groin.

Like, what? Snow, can you please just enjoy a full week being around your husband, daughter, and grandkid you haven’t seen for 28 years before volunteering yourself as a human sacrifice? Or try some of our Earth magic, it’s called Valium. Or, I don’t know, maybe redeem yourself by making a difference in this world/the one you came from/positive works?

Snow’s weird “please murder me” moment was... seriously stupid on many levels. It didn’t fit with what we know about her character or her motivations or the internal logic of the show. I’d much rather see Regina snatch Emma’s heart in the figurative sense. Pretty please, OUAT?

 

QUESTIONS:

1. Emma & Regina: Couldn’t this open up the world and complicate all the conflicts in an incredible way? Or is Regina being Emma’s step-grandma too big a mental hurdle?

2. Snow’s suicide moment: illogical or a redeeming moment for the character?

3. So… Henry was going to blow up a well? TROUBLED.

4. Do you have any interest in seeing how the real world reacts with Storybrooke, or does that just seem like a dead end?

5. Has Gold called Belle back or what?

6. Waste of Graham or you’ll take what you can get?

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The English is not my natural lenguaje so you excuse me if I you get hard time to understand me. I think that swan queen is possible. My main reason is the next. If you know something about plots you realize than everything happens in screen have a intention, and when I said everything I mean everything. The writers wouldn't leave "details" whith out a explanation, at least not this kind of stuff, I mean, that scene in the mine (among many other scenes) means something, were are not talking about real life, when the situations are spontaneous and natural, were are talking about a story, this stories are made by design, everything, and the things they can not control they let them being just in case. So, thinking like a writer, like a screenwriter who finds out than this relationship is causing responses I would act in three ways:
1) Cut it off
2) Go for it
3) Let it in "stand by" to figure out later depending on reactions.

Again, I'm sorry, my english is not good (you probably figure out that) I want to say a lot of more things but is dificult to me make me clear in other lenguaje.

PD: By the way, for the people who say that the swan queen is not possible because the characters are not gay: neither were at first Xena and Gabrielle, her initial relationship was designed to be "friends" almost "family" but definitely not like a couple, however, the chemistry between the characters began to be so obvious that, initially decided to leave it in the subtext but that eventually grew into the main story.
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Haven't read your reviews in a long time since I couldn't handle the pessimism while I was trying to stay optimistic that the show would get better again as the season went on. Welp I was wrong. Your captions still crack me up and I am seriously only still on board this show as a Swan Queen shipper (completely agree with your reasoning for why this ship would work so well).
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If strangers never come into town can someone explain to me how Owen and his father did? There was no magic in 1983 so Regina couldn't have hidden STorybrooke right?
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It was the Curse that hid the town, the road is still there, so anyone driving through would just be driving along a country road, and im guessing be invisible/intangible to the townsfolk as well. But since Owen and his dad were within the curses 'blast zone' for lack of a better term, they were able to roam the town until they crossed back outside the border.

Thats my guess for it all anyway :-)
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That totally makes sense, thank you! :D
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1. Emma & Regina: Couldn’t this open up the world and complicate all the conflicts in an incredible way? Or is Regina being Emma’s step-grandma too big a mental hurdle?
I think narratively speaking there are a lot of fans that think this is either the best direction to go or the direction that they are going but we just haven't gotten there yet. I do not think the step-grandma hurdle is too big of a leap, because it implies several things: that Regina getting married against her will still counts as a real marriage, and that Snow really thinks of Regina as a mother (both of which I think are false). I fear that this small hurdle, more like a speed bump really is something that the writer's think of as a impassible mountain.
2. Snow’s suicide moment: illogical or a redeeming moment for the character?
I think that this moment has a lot more to do with the frailties of Mary Margaret than anything else. The things that she had done while in Fairy Tale Land/to save her daughter are different than genuinely tricking someone to kill another person, especially when that person is their mother. There is an eye for an eye mentality here that she cannot take. Also, it is remarkably similar to what we are lead to think Regina would do in the same situation.
3. So… Henry was going to blow up a well? TROUBLED.
This kid has issues, but we knew that from the start. I think now the show is going to have to start dealing with all of these things that could potentially traumatize this kid.
4. Do you have any interest in seeing how the real world reacts with Storybrooke, or does that just seem like a dead end?
No interest. I think that could make the plot thoroughly unwieldy.

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I think that the reason Snow was so heart broken wasn't so much that she killed Cora. I think it had more to do with how she did it. She used Regina to kill her own mother. I think after everything that's happened between them so far, Snow just feels incredibly guilty because of Regina, not because of Cora. So I think it makes a little bit of sense that she would go to Regina. Also, massive heart flip when the sheriff got out of his car :)
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For those of you who said that Emma ,were she a Male,would have ended up with Regina because of the curse and whats behind it, I disagree.
Regina was the implementer of the curse by way of Gold, just as Emma was engineered to be the savior.
The curse's goal was to relocate to the world where Bae is, find, bring him back ( and also let everyone regain memories) . Therefore Emma first love is Bae, they have a kid (which forever links them). August tempers with that and Henry is sent to Storybrooke, procured by Gold and raised by Regina. Henry grows up, finds her and brings her to Storybrooke, Emma (and Henry) in turn bring Bae to Storybrooke to be reunited with Gold.
Therefore by curse design, its Emma and Neal who are fated, in the very least, for purpose of reunion of father and son, it not say true love.

To me, if Regina is fated to be with someone by reasoning of Love/forgiveness it should be Snow, however she is true love linked with Charming. But even then I don't know. I think her love fate is more in terms of true honest parental love. She was wronged in love by her mother and that ruins all types of love for her. As much as she loves Henry, she is currently stuck manipulating things around him like her mother did to her. Therefore she has to form a self sacrificing love as her father did for her and really fix her bond with Henry above all else.

Therefore, I think Rumplestilskin's love plight is neither parental (Bae) or romantic (Belle) but that of self and overcoming fear and finding real self worth and relinquishing power onto others. His major love affair is with power. He always goes one step forward and two steps back.His poor relationship with his wife came from running away from war (which i know he did for fear of wife and child but did in an incredibly thoughtless way). He is able to overcome it temporarily be really fighting for his son and becoming the dark one. However, he fell in love too much power and lording it over everyone who looked down upon him. Thereby scaring his son and loosing the one thing he really had left. He doesn't follow his son because he doesn't want to give up power. He kills his wife, i think more so out of the humiliation she caused him (like all the others) and out of his own self hatred at loosing Bae.
(Cora leaves and destroys her own life in exactly the same way thanks to power. She dies at the hands of her daughter which looks to be the current possible future for both Gold and Regina if they don't shape up). He gives up Belle, once again due o power. He finally gets his son back but is probably going to loose him because he is scared of loss of power once again and is going to do something to Henry.
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Lots of information and ideas here, most of which I agree with. Although I don't think the show will be killing off either Gold or Regina anytime soon, as they are arguably the best characters on the show. Watching their redemption will be an interesting journey.
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1. I agree that Regina and Emma ending up together should be a possibility.
The on-screen chemistry; there is truck load of that between them.
The character Emma being with a woman would not be a surprise to her own mother, if she had one and she was objective about here daughter's behavior, dress code and so fourth. (Take note: I'm not saying all women that dress and act a certain way ARE lesbians, just that certain things does/should cause it to be less of a shock).
Both these characters are too strong for any of the male characters currently on the show.

3. Very troubled...

I do not get/approve of how Gold/Rumple is made out to be 'not so bad' while Regina gets the short end of the stick no matter what she does...it's frustrating and annoying.
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How did Henry not notice the time loop of his life before Emma showed up.. He should have mentioned THAT to Emma as proof that something weird was up in Storybrook..OR is that why he knew that life in the brook was off?? Am I the only one that thought about that? Answers please...
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I don't think anyone realized it because of the curse. Including Henry.
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That's a good question, I didn't really think about it.
I don't know, but that that is how he knew life in the brooke was off makes sense.
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Once again this episode Henry proved what stupid jerk he is.Regina again did something for him and he just run out on her with the others leaving her alone not to mention run and Emma right in-front of her is that not adding injury to insult.I think he is more dangers than magic.Lilly really Lesbian plot line between Emma and Regina ?
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I agree...Regina took care of him for 10 years. As far as I can gather she has never done him any harm, she has provided a home for him, allowed him to interact with Snow even after she gave him the book and has not killed anyone he loves even after getting magic back and the way they treated her.
As far as the Regina/Emma thing...is there really any other character at this stage that either of them are more compatible with? My personal opinion: No. Not to mention the only proper on-screen chemistry is when they interact.
To each his own, this is just my five cents.
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Depends on how you define "harm". Yeah she fed him, clothed him, etc. But she also tried to gaslight him and trying to cast a curse on him that will take away his free will, which in my book counts as psychological abuse. But in any case, I think that Henry does love Regina. But he's fearful/wary of her because he knows what she's capable of. Just because you love someone doesn't mean you have to be around them. On the other hand, it's been Henry who has stopped the Charmings from killing Regina and he's had some sweet moments with her throughout season 2.
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Is nobody going to mention what a truly dreadful actor the kid who played tiny Ethan was? I mean, SERIOUSLY here? Is there such a great lack of good child actors in Hollywood that we need to use that kid? His whole speech at the edge of town (went something like "I will find you Dad! I will NEVER stop looking!") was comical and so over the top BAD that it just ruined the whole Regina realizing she screwed up majorly part. Ah OUaT, seriously, fire your casting director
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My response to this--> @tnetennba If you think a psychopathic mass murderer is a good fit for Emma, you must have a very low opinion of her. Or a very high tolerance for psychopathic mass murderers.

Why is it so hard to imagine Swan Queen when you already have a similar couple on the show? I'm talking about Rumbelle, here: So, to rephrase what you said: "Those who ship Rumbelle must have a very low opinion of Belle. Or a very high tolerance for psychopathic mass murderers." Can you see the contraditions here?!
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Some one actually responded to my last post as a delusional male fantasy and everyone keeps saying that Swan Queen makes no sense to the story so I thought I would expand my list of reason why Swan Queen is perfect. Also I am a straight woman who happen to Love OUAT and can see what is right in front of me.
Again it will not happen over night and at the very least Emma and Regina should become friends. If the friendship turns into something more than so be it. But I am sick of hearing people hate because they are both woman. Also the incest thing is a dead argument and extremely laughable. Also this is an amazing article and thank you Lily for bringing Swan Queen out in the open.

1) The only way to end a blood feud is the spilling of more blood. NOT True you can end a blood feud with the blending of blood like a marriage.
2)Lana has stated in interviews that she plays Regina with an underlining love Of Emma
3)They already have a straight version of Swan Queen on the show it's called Rumbelle,
4)Emma invited Regina to the diner, and told her parents she knew her. And Emma really wanted to believe that Regina had changed.
5)Emma was angry and betrayed when she seen Regina kill Archie, she was truly hurt and was the only person to believe in Regina until that point.
6) Regina values Emma's opinion you can see it on her face every time Emma says something bad about her.
7)Lets be honest if you ship Captain Swan, Hook is basically the male version of Regina. Yet lacks the depth that is Regina because of how Lana plays her. Colin is a great actor and he makes a amazing Hook, but Lana brings something special to Regina. FIY Emma hates Hook too yet their love/hate relationship is ok. Ship and let ship but play fair. He is sexy and snarky and that is why you love him with Emma. Same reason people ship Swan Queen. And I total see why people ship Captain Swan. Because he is sexy and charming and willing to fight for his love.
Hook is the guy you have a one night stand with or the guy you date when your 16 and tiring to piss off your parents. He is not the father type, nor could I see him raising his
dead lovers grandson.
8) Regina is the only person who warned Emma that magic comes at a price.
9)Neil left Emma, because a guy in an alley told him to. I actually love Neal but I like the idea of him moving on better.
10)As far as the story is concerned it makes perfect sense, for a family to come together threw the power of love/
11) Regina and Emma at the very least need to become friends to do right by their son. 12)"How to get the Savior to taste my forbidden fruit."
13)Right before Emma left town she told Regina "What ever is going on between us must end."
14. When Emma met Cora for the fist time she describe her relation ship with Regina as "Complicated." Jane Epperson writes for OUAT and wrote for Buffy and when Willow came out to Buffy she describe her and Tara's relationship as "Complicated."
15.Speacking of Buffy/OUAT parallels Emma = Buffy, Neal=Angle, leaving the love of his life for the greater good of the show. Hook=Spike the guy who would fight to the end for his love. And Regina is basically Willow and Faith combined into one bad ass package. Thou if anyone knows in the end Spike died and Angle left and the only people left at Buffy's side at the end was Willow and Faith.
16)Just because a charter loved a man in the past dose not mean that they can not love a woman, for example Willow.
17)Emma is hope, Regina is hopeless
18) Because not only did Emma wear a swan around her neck she also wore, a necklace that looked a lot like Daniel's ring
19)Because Regina gave up everything to help Emma brake the curse to save their son.
20) Emma didn't believe that they were from fairy tale land until, Regina told her.
21) Even though Emma goes on about how Henry is her son, She has never once said Regina is a bad mother.
22)After everything Regina has been threw is deservers someone who says she is enough and why not the person who is the of true love personified.
23)Emma is like Belled, Regina is Rumple
24) Emma was the only one who noticed Regina leave the party and ran after her.
25)If Rumble can find a true love why can't Regina.
26)•Both are very guarded, closed off, sarcastic people, and yet underneath that are actually capable of extraordinary amounts of love, despite everything they’ve been through, despite never having good examples of such love in their lives.
27) Kathryn asked Regina have you ever been in love? Regina: Yes. Once. vs. Hook: For someone who’s never been in love, you’re quite perceptive aren’t you? Emma: Maybe I was. Once.
28)Both have had the experience of feeling like they’re losing Henry to the new parent in his life. Regina with Emma and Emma with Neal.
29)Snowing parallels:
•Emma jumps through fire and saves Regina in Desperate Souls vs. David jumps through fire when trying to bring Snow and Emma home in Into The Deep
•“I will always find you” vs. “You’re complaining about how I saved your life? Fine, next time I’ll just… You know what? Next time, I’ll do the same thing, and the time after that” (and she does, she never fails to save her)
•What follows comes from the Heart of Darkness vs. The Cricket Game:
•“She didn’t do this” vs. “She didn’t do it”
•“She’s a good person. I know her” vs. “I know that look. I know her.”
•The entire “framed for murder” plot. Like, practically the whole thing. But I’ll type it out here so we can all see the magnitude of it. I don’t see how this could be unintentional. MM was framed for Kathryn’s murder. Regina was framed for Archie’s murder. David believed in MM’s innocence, despite evidence. Emma believed in Regina’s innocence, despite evidence. David tries to prove MM innocent, asking Archie to help him remember his blackouts. Emma tries to prove Regina innocent, asking Gold for help (or… Pongo, rather). David “sees” MM say she’s going to “kill her”, questions her innocence. Emma “sees” “Regina” “kill” “Archie”, questions her innocence. David confronts MM with what he saw, they fight. Emma confronts Regina with what she saw, they fight. Kathryn shows up, alive. Archie shows up, alive. David apologized to MM, Emma however… Still waiting on that one.
•Also I would just like to point out, for the people who say, “But they hate each other!!!” (which I don’t believe to be true in the first place), that when Snow and Charming first met, they didn’t like each other either.
•In fact, Snow was stealing from Charming (kind of like how Regina perceived Emma to be stealing Henry from her)
•and due to outside circumstances ended up working together for common interest (much as Emma and Regina teamed up to find a way to save Henry)
•and in the process ended up saving each other’s lives (just as Emma and Regina have both saved each other at least once now). If it isn't a parallel then that is just lazy writing.
30)Stable Queen parallels:
•“I’m sorry I snapped at you” vs. “I’m sorry. Snapping at you, I shouldn’t have done that.”
•Daniel’s physical stance in the “Stay strong Regina” moment vs. Emma’s physical stance in the hat scene in Broken (This sounds silly, but honestly. They’re both behind her with their hands on her arm in an encouraging, protective way. That’s huge for Regina, who only ever gets touched in an aggressive, violent manner.)
•Daniel’s ring started the hat in An Apple Red as Blood vs. Emma’s touch started the hat in Broken (and just for emphasis, what we’re talking about here is magic, as in “love, true love is the most powerful magic of all” and “true love creates magic” and “true love transcends realms”)
•Though it seems like her catchphrase, Cora has only ever said “love is weakness” twice in the entire series. First, after tearing out and crushing Daniel’s heart. Second, when she attempts to tear out Emma’s heart. That’s it!
31)Emma was the only one who smiled when Regina came into the dinner
32)Because their are people who are right for you Neal, wrong for you Hook, and people who you chose Regina. Thou you could probably switch those out with anyone. I will admit that has my shipper bias
33)because threw love there is always Redemption, and Emma is love and Regina needs Redemption.
34) Because the worst thing that Ever happen to them equaled the best thing to ever happen to them a boy named Henry.
35)Because Regina said Emma, Henry and the two idiots.
36)When Regina needs help she asks Emma
37)No one has saved or defended Regina as much as Emma.
38)Both had a difficult, loveless childhood. We know Cora was abusive, and it’s been implied that Emma’s life in the foster system was certainly less than joyful
And if anyone responds to this post with anything less than a logical reason why Swan Queen shouldn't be together I won't even dignify your stupidity with a response.
Also stop saying ewe and gross. It's just mean and hurtful and really has no place on a public forum. Quite trying to shame people for there personal beliefs. Weather they love Captain Swan or Swan Queen. Both are valid and everyone has a right to their option. Ship and let Ship leave out the hate.
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SOMEONE KILL HENRY I WILL PAY YOU GOOD MONEY!!!!!!!
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YES AND SNOW TOOOOOO
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Having read a lot of these comments, I sometimes wonder what I'm not seeing that others seem to be. I'm just enjoying the stories. No shipping.. (I will admit to missing Graham. Cause he was a cool character, I thought they killed him off too early) -- Trying to figure out who was who in fairy tale land.

I do, however, wonder if they have a plan for any of this. Enough to get it to season three and possibly beyond without it losing steam. To me, sometimes, it seems really off balance.

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And gosh I'm commenting a lot, but it doesn't matter if a lesbian relationship is "brave" or not (um, not? TV shows do it all the time..?). It matters if it
FITS
THE
F***ING
STORY.
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100% Agreed!
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Oh, guys, sorry if I twisted anybody's panties last night. I was bitching about everything last night. Rage-mode.
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I think it does fit...I actually don't think about it being brave or not brave. ABC has had some very progressive LGBT storylines on Revenge, Scandal, Gray's Anatomy and they've bought a pilot that's about a straight up lesbian couple. I honestly just think it fits the themes of the story & gives Henry the best possible resolution. And would mean featuring more of the two best actresses on the payroll.
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Thank you Lilly! Thats what many of us Swan Queen shippers have been saying!
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Seriously, is this Adam or Eddy? Because you really know what fits the story or what it's going to turn into later on.

No one is saying they are going to wake up one day realizing they are in love. Everyone speculates. Everyone roots for their pairing. It's a SHOW and literally anything can happen depending on the writing. It's not a verbatim adaptation of Disney's Snow White & the Seven Dwarves. I didn't see people going ballistic about the fact that Jack from Jack in the Beanstalk was a girl, when in the actual story Jack was a boy. Did it then not fit the story?

It's a TV SHOW. Try watching it with an open mind. Don't Dismiss Regina/Emma because of the comments you and I have seen in this forum: they are related/women/hate each other. Why should these things hinder if in future it could turn into a beautiful love story? But we all know it will never if people keep pulling such comments and keep making the writers and shippers feel uncomfortable even approaching such a relationship.

I tried really hard not to comment on this because it doesn't really help anyone, but you my friend have been taking it too personally that such an idea was even considered fathomable by people. Let's make a deal, how about you try to keep an open mind about this happening and I will keep an open mind about this not happening? (Believe you me, I am pretty much prepared for the latter)
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A story that the writers change canon on every single fucking week. Thats a really weak excuse there.
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It's more of the "brave" thing I'm focusing on. Does it really matter if it's brave or not? At least have support for your arguments. People are on here saying, "It's good because nobody ever does gay relationships! (Which isn't true.) That would be so gutsy/ballsy/brave!" And I'm just smashing my head on my desk.
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I meant at least you* have supports for your arguments. I was directing this at others, not you.
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Honestly, as I've said in a previous comment, a lot of LBGTQ fans want swan queen or another gay ship to happen because we want equal representation in the media and because we know how hard it is to get a happy ending. Cis gendered hetrosexual couples never have to worry about if they will get a ship or not or a happy ending a lot of the times. And no I get it, but I'm gonna defend my ship mates on this. We're a family.

I try to back up my arguments as much as I can here but like I said I'm gonna fight to defend my ship and ship mates because we're tired of sitting in the back and not getting anything. We want to have a happy ending in the media that doesn't end with kill or harm your lesbians. And please don't hide behind the fact its a family friendly show.

I think everything in season 1 disproved that. Just because the almighty Ginny Goodwin says it doesn't make it true.
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Lily, I'm thinking about it, and Swan Queen or whatever doesn't work.
I'm not hate-mailing you, but I really don't want to be lectured on how you're begging for a relationship that will never happen. Not because it's homosexual. Just because it doesn't fit - period.
This is Aurora and Mulan all over again. It doesn't fit the story. Aurora had a male suitor (her ONE TRUE LOVE) already. I'm not hitching about them being lesbians. I'm hitching about his it makes no damn sense to put them (Aurora/Mulan, Regina/Emma) into the story when Emma and Aurora already have suitors, whether male or female.
P.S. What the heck happened to Aurora and Mulan and their way to save Phillip?
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See I think it does fit the overarching themes of the series...and it also creates so much great conflict. RIght now they're really reaching for conflict (Snow begging Regina to kill her? A viral video campaign?) Whereas the hero falling in love with the villain always lends so much great, epic conflict to a series (Buffy and Spike, basically)
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Except all the characters in question are not gay. They have all had heterosexual relationships (true love even) and there is no indication that they are gay. On-screen chemistry can be other things besides romantic...look at Redford and Newman, Lewis and Martin (I'm going old-school with these examples lol). It's okay to not be gay too.

And...attack!
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Okay, Swan Queen is really getting on my nerves.
Just because they have saved each other doesn't mean that it's a White Knight and Damsel in Distress situation. Emma is just a good person. They're not automatically going to fall in love.
Just because some of us want Emma with men doesn't mean we're trying to keep this show solely straight. Maybe we just like those ships. I ship Captain Swan. Whatever.
This is based on Disney cartoons. Even thought this is one strange story of all of them and doesn't follow any of them directly, none of the Disney cartoons had lesbian relationships. It kind of goes against the stories to have it, I suppose.
It doesn't fit the storyline. Regina would kill Emma in an instant if Henry wouldn't hate her for it. Regina has no feelings for Emma and her family except irritation, jealousy and envy. We don't have to put a homosexual/bisexual relationship into it just to make it feel more normal. If the writers aren't putting that relationship in there, they aren't "ignoring" the "chemistry". That's just not the storyline. They're not purposely doing it. The story is just written a certain way so that everything works itself out in the end. Emma/Regina would probably change how they had planned the story completely and it just doesn't fit.
It's not happening. I'm not being harsh; I'm just stating the obvious.
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Actually ParaNorman ( a Disney movie) had a gay animated character. And yet, Regina has had all these chances to kill Emma and she hasn't..... Just saying....

And if we are going with terrible writing Captain Swan fits all that. It's like twilight all over again.
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That's because our annoying little shit of a boy Henry has repeatedly manipulated Regina into not killing her.

And as for Captain Swan, well... I just have a mushy romantic heart (but I don't like Twilight.)
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Henry who has been spoiled by all adults in his life. Captain Swan (or pairings like it [Buffy/Angel spring to mind] ) are really over done. Plus Jmo and Collin's chemistry off screen doesn't translate to on camera.
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That statement, true or not, is funny.
They so do have off-screen chemistry.
They don't even try to hide it.
*sighhhhhhh*
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-Nah. I mean I know SwanQueen fanfic is all the rage, and maybe there is some chemistry there, but dear lord, I'm still working furiously on my OUAT family chart, and if they do that, I may actually explode. I'm already wearing a tin foil hat and wrapped up in twenty different strands of yarn. Please no. I don't oppose the lesbianism. Mulan and Aurora is where it's at. Or Belle and Mulan. Ohh...Rumple would flip!
- Illogical. She's Snow freaking White! What happened to our badass Snow? The Snow that made me reexamine the fairytales of my youth? I want that Snow back. GiGi is amazing, but Snow as a character is slipping. I think she's spent too much time around David (Yes, I say David because apparently his alter David has taken over the dashing qualities of Charming and left us with this kinda, sad, pathetic, and wimpy guy) and Henry. What is happening to the "good" characters? I was actually looking forward to a kinda evil snow. A morally grey Snow. It would have been interesting and unpredictable. I did not expect Emo Snow. Emo Snow is depressing. Emo Snow is no one to look up to. She asked to die. She was willing to abandon her daughter, husband, and grandson because she could't take what she did. That isn't the Snow we love, and it's warped when the "evil" characters are coming across more layered, vulnerable, on the cusp of redemption. Regina and Gold have been so deliciously complex that you can't flat out hate them.
- It's Henry. I'm still trying to figure out why his parents thought sending him to NYC would be a good idea. "This small, obscure town in nowheresville Maine with endless magic and and a plethora of babysitters in the form of every fairy tale character you can imagine is not safe. Let's send him to NYC! There is no place safer for a precocious manchild like Henry to go than NYC!" I know I was supposed to be paying attention when that happened, but I may have inadvertently broke out in the JJ Walker "Dy-no-mite" dance.
- Eh. It could go either way. I'll hold off to see how it goes.
- She probably has his cell phone number blocked by now.
- It's Graham. I'll take him in whatever form or way I can. *sniffle*
- I LOVED the Groundhog day thing going on with 80s Regina. It was awesome! I mean it was such a different thing for them to do. I always wondered about how time worked. I mean that's just twisted. I'd love it if they did flashbacks more often, I found that to be very interesting.
-Can we just give Lana Parilla all the Emmys on Earth? That woman is incredible! I mean her tears are like little diamonds falling from her eyeballs. That lip tremble...I am sold. Every single time. Whatever emotion she's feeling. I'm always sold. The desperation with the little boy. Her anguish. Regina has become one of, if not the most complex character out of the bunch, and she's infinitely more interesting to watch sometimes than her counterparts. I mean she brings a vulnerability and almost obtuse quality to her character that makes it almost impossible to flat out loathe her!
-Same can be said about Robert C. Rumple has layers. Deep layers. He's an opportunist. He's bad with a purpose. You can't flat out hate a character like that. he's aware of the horrible stuff he's done. I loved his line to Snow about that. How you basically tell yourself that you did what you had to do until you believe it.
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Yes because being sold into a marriage and being made a sex slave/nanny makes a family.
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Oh, I've seen your other posting elsewhere. Seriously, now I have to express my annoyance. You're operating under the very wrong assumption that I somehow was in support of Regina's marriage to Snow's father. I'm not. I never said that anywhere in this posting, so please, if you want to reply to something I said can you ACTUALLY reply to something I said?! I'm assuming this is because I don't ship Swan Queen. I don't. I wouldn't. And as I articulated, it isn't because of they're a lesbian couple. I could give less than a damn if they're gay or straight. I don't because I'm still trying to make sense of the already convoluted and supremely complicated family tree of theirs as it is. They're connected a dozen different ways already. I mean to be fair I'm sort of against family members dating each other too, you know, along with being adamantly against sex slavery and arranged marriages. Equally as peeved when Regina herself was using Graham as a sex slave. I'm an equal opportunity kinda girl like that. And also I like Regina as is. Her struggle with wanting to be loved but her inability to actually get people to love her. It's endearing and so her That vulnerability, it's what keeps her from being seen as truly evil. As I mentioned in my previous comment.. IMO for the foreseeable future I'd like her to be single,because of that very reason. That's her journey. That's her characterization. That's one of the many things that makes her so intriguing. To me. I'm not really much of a shipper in general. That's me. That's my opinion. We don't have to agree on that, and that's quite alright. I'm not dissing you because you love that ship, or even challenging you for liking it.
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Sorry, I got so lost in being awesome that my mind has went elsewhere. What the devil are you talking about and how is your response applicable to my comment? I'm honestly confuzzled. I never said any of that made a family.
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Fair enough. I just don't even know what in my comment you could have even misread to begin with. I've read some of your comments. You make valid points. You back up some of your arguments etc. I respect that. I understand your passion about the topic. I mean I'm a "double minority" if you will, so I understand the passion in wanting representation. As a humanist, I'm all for it on many levels. I'm not gay or bi or anything like that, but I do have friends and family who are. I do see it as important. I'm down with the cause, if you will, I support gay rights. I understand the passion. I am still an ally. I hope you don't take this the wrong way, or misconstrue what I'm saying here, but you'll find that there are a lot of people here who are also allies, even if they don't agree with your ship. And, again your passion is commendable, but when you overdo it, you've been running the risk of dissing those who are even allies, with the implications that we're somehow homophobic or heteronormative, or assuming that we have some warped views on love and marriage, just because some of us don't agree or care for the ship and have different, yet equally as valid points for that. I know this from experience, so I'm telling you this, not as a slight, but as a helpful suggestion, when it comes to hot button issues like this, you can easily run the risk of your passion and ways of expressing yourself actually detracting from your valid points being made, and that would be unfortunate. A condescending sigh, for example because I asked what you were referring to in my comment. Because what you were referring to was nowhere in my comment. You can read this or not, take it for what you will, antagonistic or helpful. It doesn't really matter to me at this point, but I just wanted to get that out there.
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*Sighs* We never see Regina willingly commit to marrying Leopold. Cora accepts the proposal for her and then use magic to keep her trapped with Leopold. * we never know if this enchantment is removed until Leopold dies or not. I assumed it never was* I must have misread your comment and assumed that it meant you still considered the marriage as them binding the family together. That's my bad.
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1. Emma & Regina: Totally love it. Only reason I started watching the show was when people said they almost kissed in episode 5. I'm hesitant to go into this much detail with how people refer to them as a "male fantasy," (ironic since the vast majority of shippers are female) but since their sexual orientation seems to be an issue for some with getting behind this pairing, I'll give you a few reasons why they explode off my gaydar. While they haven't overtly stated that Emma & Regina like girls, they have included a few tidbits, such as Regina giving a rose to the nurse on Valentine's Day (Skin Deep) & Emma spilling her hot cocoa because she was too busy watching Regina's...assets...leave Granny's diner (Cinderella episode--I don't remember the title offhand). The writers have also used numerous tv tropes to indicate these two women are a viable pairing such as meeting in the first episode of the series, hating/disliking each other -- except without the personal space of two people that 'hate' each other (Moonlighting, anyone?), not to mention setting up the plot as a mix between the Lesbian Parent Trap and Princess/White Knight saving the Evil Queen/Damsel in Distress. How many times has Emma saved Regina from certain death? I counted as least 5 in the season two premiere alone.

For those saying it's not intentional on the part of the writers, one of the writers is on a panel about LGBT subtext at WonderCon. Just saying.

2. Snow’s suicide moment: illogical or a redeeming moment for the character?
Honestly, I thought it kind of seemed a bit bizarre. However, it did serve to redeem her slightly--only slightly. I have high expectations for "good" characters who should know better.

3. So… Henry was going to blow up a well? TROUBLED.
Seriously, how did Emma and/or Neal let him get access to dynamite? They may be new at parenting, but that seems inordinately incompetent.

4. Do you have any interest in seeing how the real world reacts with Storybrooke, or does that just seem like a dead end?
No interest in this at all really. Huge dead end.

5. Has Gold called Belle back or what?
Gold should have been calling Belle instead of sticking his nose in Regina's business. I actually like Rumbelle. Emilie De Ravin has come along drastically in the acting department since her days on Roswell. I'm looking forward to the episode that showcases her character a bit as well, "Lacey".

6. Waste of Graham or you’ll take what you can get?
I'm not really a fan of Graham. As with all the male characters on this show, his misdeeds have been horribly white washed. He was an assassin. He killed people in cold blood before Regina ever found him. Yet, he's effectively been martyred by the show and the majority of fans.
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When I put 'over easy' on the menu, I was talking about the eggs.
-Granny
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LOL! I loved that line! I gotta say, Red totally pulls off the street walker gear.
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sassy granny! love her
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Nope, a lesbian fairytale endgame is NOT a good idea. Emma should get together with the love of her life - Henry's father and the three of them will live "happily ever after".

Regina shouldn't be with anyone because she is a mass murderer who keeps going back to her evil ways and she can't have Henry so she should not live in the end. She should die a hero's death in order to redeem herself a little or something. That is what makes the most sense. In the meantime she can have Hook.

Gold will eventually be freed from being The Dark One and he will get Belle - just like in the story of Beauty and the Beast he will be a man (albeit not a prince) again... That is what fits.

A lesbian fantasy between those two characters does NOT fit with the storyline at all.
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Uhh. I am sorry. Am I the only one having bouts extreme shuddering after reading “Emma should get together the love of her life - Henry's father”? I mean, really?! The guy that was 300 years old when he seduced (it's also called statutory rape, people) a friggin' minor, and then left her in prison for what HE did - without questioning why he should/shouldn't do it? So - true love? Lol. What a twisted concept of it, then!
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Dear God, really? Let's kill off the woman of color and save the mass murdering woman hater and give him a happy ending. And why is it a bad idea? Because two women loving each other is wrong? Or because it's challenging your ideals of love, media representation, and your own comfortable hetro normal bubble?
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Rumpelstiltskin was never a bad man to start with - he was just a "coward". He wasn't really much of a coward either since he just wanted to be alive for his son and his stupid, cheating hoebag of a wife. When he became The Dark One he became bad and there's the difference. Not so bad that he couldn't REALLY love women though = Cora, Belle. So I don't agree with you that he is a woman hater, he actually loved these bitches (excluding Belle, she is the only good girl he loved and that's why they should get the happy ending). If he got rid of that curse he wouldn't be bad anymore.

Bae never raped anyone and Emma wasn't exactly a minor. He left her for a reason, a bad one, but still, there were reasons. Their story is not so messed up that it can't be fixed. They still love each other.

Regina has no purpose to be alive because she has no love of her life who's alive. The stable boy is dead, her father is dead, her mother is dead and she can never be Henry's mother. She has nothing and no one. That and the fact that a lesbian story does NOT fit. Especially bewteen two women who hate each other and have nothing in common except Henry - Henry, who has a FATHER and MOTHER = hetero parents. He does not need lesbian "parents" just because lesbians out there in our world think it would be a great idea to have a lesbian couple randomly thrown in the story just because they are lesbian themselves (or perverts who like watching them). I have no problem with it, but they are still a minority, this is not the place for it and we do not need to see gay couples in every show for it to be accepted. I don't think it's me who's living in a bubble here...
Go watch Will & Grace, L Word, Modern Family or Glee or something. There are so many gay themed shows out there that they do not need to complicate all other shows with it as well.

And why did you bring "woman of color" into this? Are you going to accuse me of being a racist too now? lol.
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I actually like Regina too, but I don't think she can have any happy ending. If so, then she must find her own man and get her own child, but she would still have to live with being a murderer.

The difference between her and Rumpel is that he is bad because he's the dark one while Regina has no reason other than her own hatred, spitefullness and vengefulness. That's why she, as a murderer, has no acceptable return-from-evil whereas Rumpel could. Even Cora could have had an acceptable reason for her evildoing since she didn't have a heart (she was a bit rotten to start with though).

Oh yeah, Regina clearly wants/needs a child. How can she get everything she wants if she's a lesbian? Do you want her and a lesbian lover to get a lab-child too? Maybe it would be conjured up by magic, LOL! How fairytale romantic that would be...
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*face palm*
NO, because it doesn't fit with the storyline at all!
Regina would kill Emma (and her family) in an instant if that meant getting Henry. Regina, even if she doesn't hate Emma anymore, has no friendly feelings for her or anything more than that. Emma obviously has romantic ties with other people, no matter how good or bad those two men are for her, and Regina would be to self-respecting and spiteful to even consider being with Emma, the one person who took Henry away from her in the first place.
Not everything is about challenging homosexuality and staying in our "own comfortable hetro normal bubble". Sometimes, it just really doesn't fit in the story. And it doesn't.
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I really think we are not watching the same show. Why the hell can't two women fall in love? Honestly, I'm getting sick of this, they hate each other business. I swear everyone ignores the interviews were Lana says that " Regina cares for Emma in her own way". And no, it is about your hetro normal bubble when its allowed to veto gay/lesbian relationships because it doesn't fit "with the story" Bull fucking shit.

This same story has royalty keeping sex slaves, killing people, werewolves eating people, cross racial relationships, adultery, murder, etc. It's game of thrones toned down enough to where ABC can squeak it out. Why can't we have lesbians if we have all that?

Dear God, really? The chemistry is so forced between Michael, Collin, and JMo it makes me feel like its a first year high school acting class....
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Ow... *clutches chest* my Rumbelle heart.
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Cause I can't reply to your comment on yours...odd. Anyways its as an actor I pick up on the chemistry. And can we point out that Leopold's marriage to Regina was something that Regina never consented to? She was basically sold into sexual slavery and to be a nanny to Snow. Pretty sure that doesn't make a family. (Dont get me started on Rumbelle I despise the ship)

Scizzoring with the step grandma...really? Can we not be so sexist about that people, please? Look I never see her as a step grandmother because as Princess Bride says " If you did not say yes, you are not married." *Shrugs*

I really hate that idea because it's a meaningless death then.
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It's not the lesbian part that doesn't fit the story. It's just how there's no way I can see Regina letting go of her pride, self-respect and independence enough to actually even consider going down that path. And Emma, even though she has saved Regina before and fought on her behalf, has been repeatedly betrayed by her even recently, and it's not Regina's feelings for Emma that's stopping her from killing Emma. It's that little shit Henry.
I honestly don't care if the relationship is homosexual. I care if it makes any goddamn sense. And it doesn't matter if you see the chemistry between Hook/Emma and Emma/Neal. What matters is that those are obviously the only two suitors ABC plans on giving Emma. I'd be confused if they gave her a third. I found August and Emma to have more chemistry than Emma and Regina. Really. Plus, it still creeps me out that Regina is technically related to Emma. People are bitching about a 300 year sexing up a 17 year old girl (*cough, cough* Rumbelle *cough* and The Vampire Diaries, Twilight and almost every other immortal-main-love-interest-story *cough*). How about scizzoring with her step-grandmother?
It's not always about the homosexual factor, and right now, it's not, at least not for me. It's only about the capability of fitting it into the story.
I honestly think Regina will die a redeeming hero's death because the evil queen dies in the Disney movie, but they can't have her die evil. But that's off topic.
Don't tell me it's about my 'normal bubble homo/bisexuality is normal, fine, I really don't care. I care about comparability.
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I don't *want* her to be with Hook, but she can have fun with him in the meantime since they are both "evil" and somewhat on the same side. He helped her mother afterall, why not Regina now? I just think he would be the only person to fit with her romantically, IF she has to be with someone. Also, just imagine the flirtation between Hook/Emma - that could just make Regina want him even more, it would suit their rivalry after all, lol.
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I really thought after Regina burned up her 'curse paper' that Henry would have at least given her a hug too... Instead he runs straight to group Emma.

It's kind of the same way I felt after the scene with Regina and Rumpel backing off closing the portal to fairyland so Emma and Snow could come home.

And in the Snow at Regina's door scene, I kept seeing baby Snow's face overlaying present day Snow's. ( don't know if that makes sense )

I know it's been commented about before, but the facial expression similarities between those two actresses are just uncanny.
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I actually had this conversation with my brother one day about why anybody would want to rule the whole world. When Regina complained about people doing what she wanted because they had to (or because of fear or whatever) instead of wanting to do it I was like DUH!! You really want to be the queen and do all sorts of crazy evil stuff to get there and then you're like "But I want everybody to like me"? Seriously...? Maybe she should've just cursed the whole town, not just Henry, to love her.

And the achy breaky heart...no, wait...walkie-talkie heart. This episode was actually kinda hilarious. Regina wants her revenge just because F U that's why and Rumple was the cool guy trying to talk Regina out of it. Now that part I don't understand. I thought Rumple wanted to get rid of Henry because of the whole future whatever? Wouldn't the best thing then be for Henry to leave with his dad? Then again Rumple would miss his son.

Now as much as I like almost any girl-on-girl action (or just the flirting) on-screen (and this particular coupling would be awesome), I really don't see Emma and Regina happening. And I don't want the writers to go down that road just for the sake of having a lesbian relationship. That would go against everything we already know about both of them.

I really facepalmed when Snow appeared at Regina's door. Like come on! I get it! You're really bummed about being partially responsible for somebody's death. But they were trying to kill you and/or your family. Get over it! Sometimes sh*t goes down and there's really nothing you can do about it. But I guess this was a necessary plot twist so that the writers could find a way for Regina to alter her revenge plan. I guess the writers couldn't really find a way for Regina to kill Snow without losing Henry for good.

What is it with Henry anyway? Emma is mom and then she's Emma, and Regina is mom and queen and Regina, and Neal is dad when Henry has known him for about 5 minutes. It's like he really doesn't care about people's feelings. (Please, please, PLEASE Henry, go away with your dad...) On a side note: Henry - and everybody else - needs to get the names straight. I hate it when they keep switching between FTL and Storybrooke names.

I don't really see the real world in Storybrooke. I think Greg/Owen/Who-even-cares has been randomly dropping by ever since he grew up hoping to find his dad. I hope he finds him fast, they both lose their memory and we never see them again. I could not care less. The story about Regina wanting something in her life was touching and everything but everything else about Greg just seems forced. Now that magic is back in town somebody is bound to find a way to hide the town. Do it. Fast.

Gold (look at me switching between names...) hasn't probably had the time to call Belle. And maybe it's better that way. Try to explain a girl how you magically healed when you were seconds away from death. I hope he waits until Belle gets her memory back.

With Graham I take what I can get. I actually wasn't expecting to see him ever again after his death. My greatest disappointment was the lack of Meghan Ory. Then again at least she was there even though her role in this episode was so small.
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1. Are you serious? Emma and Regina? This is not the fact that they are both women, but just what they have been through and their blatant hatred for each other that makes the idea of them together disgust me. I have literally seen no chemistry whatsoever between those two. Period. The possibility of a woman-brawl breaking out (which I'm sure Hook would watch with glee), sure, but I have seen no spark of romance.

2. Sad, actually. It's rare when you see Snow torn up about something that's happened to her, or crap happening to her in general. Usually she just keeps pushing along, but her major dive really brought out the base of her character. Snow White is one of the most innocent little creatures ever, and so killing somebody--no matter how bad--would still tear her up, and I found it very moving.

3. ...

4. Yes and no. I'm curious to how they would react, but I like the idea of Storybrooke staying in its own little world.

5. BELLE, I MISS YOU (and Hook...).

6. Oh my gosh, I was so happy to see Graham. I was rolling on the floor and my mother had to tell me to stop acting like a total idiot.

Granny: "When I put 'over easy' on the menu, I was talking about the eggs."
Best. Line. Ever.

Holy jeez, Lily, I like you and your reviews, but you seemed a little harsh on this review. Snow made a sacrifice. It's not a bad thing. If she can't even put herself together again because she's so torn up and sad (she did commit murder), then she couldn't really be able to "enjoy a full week" with her family.
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WOW - I have not been here for a while but I happened to watch this episode and I thought it was one of if not THE best I've seen so far.
Great and funny review by Lily, laughing about her remark about Regina and Emma, scrolling down to the comments - WTF happened here?! What's the fuss about? If they can pull off E&R in a believable fashion - why not? And how can anyone get "oversexualized" by a Disney show? And why isn't everyone hooray about the possibility of Henry leaving with his douche-scarf of a father? And is Ethan Embrys father dead or still alive in some kind of magic stasis?
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Great review! I totally ship Emma and Regina. It makes the most sense for the story. Regina and Emma have so much in common and so much chemistry! The show has really suffered by keeping them apart so much. Thanks for giving voice to the potential romantic pairing that many fans have seen and most mainstream press and the shows creators seem to ignore.
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I don't really think the creators are ignoring it. Whatever chemistry you see in those two is probably unintentional, and they are just writing Emma with Hook and/or Neal because that's what fits the storyline.
I mean, Colin O'Donoghue.
C'mon people.
HOOK.
That smile.
X)
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yeah i notice the only thing people like about hook is that he is HOT, because the character is very flat. But i think its has potential lets see what the writers do with him.
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I like him all over. I think he's the average going-to-be antihero.
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Yes because sexist pirate and a 300 year old man who has sex with a 17 yr old and leaves her in jail are sooo great.
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But doesn't that make Neal like all these Vampire Romance plots?
I always found it a nonsensical when these said beings are justified in wanting these teens because they turned at say age 17. Even so, they would have all these years of experience to age them mentally so that is a poor excuse.
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I didn't say that Neal and Hook are great (I just find Hook very sexy XD). I'm just pointing out that the writers aren't intentionally avoiding a lesbian relationship. It doesn't fit the characters. Even if those two don't hate each other anymore, Regina obviously has no problem killing Emma and her whole family for Henry. She would never become romantic with a woman who is an obstruction in her path to becoming henry's sole parental figure. That's basically Regina's whole quest: She wants Henry, and she doesn't mind killing everyone to get him.
If Regina had absolutely any shred of caring for Emma, than she wouldn't toss around the idea of her death so easily. The only thing keeping her from killing Emma is Henry's emotional manipulation on Regina.
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Can they kill Henry or turn him into a frog?? I hate the little b*d.
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"Or try some of our Earth magic, it’s called Valium." Made me giggle out right that did:)
Anyway this episode had some great moments, Graham back, even if only for like two mins, but take what you can get..still would have preferred a Resurrection of some sort more tbh. Snows story line kinda bores me, I mean sure pure heart etc etc ..but for her to go all emo, was just a bit silly..this woman does not seem happy about anything anyway, always whimpering about something.. and when she asked Regina to kill her, i feel bad admitting that the moment she had her heart in her hands, I was secretly praying she would crush it! That would have been a great TV moment!
The kid story line is crap and I still don't know how they picked him to play such a central role, HE SUCKS! Every time he is on screen i just wanna fast forward..
Gold on the other hand was epic this episode and most of the previous ones this season, we are getting to see a whole new more in depth character and Robert C. is doing a great job all around!

Abandoned kid story line = YAWN
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Great article, Lily!

I'm so tired of people saying that Emma and Regina hate each other! Have you not been watching the show?!? They may have "hated" each other in the beginning (despite the obvious sexual tension) but that was before they got to know each other and understand one another better. Emma may be annoyed by Regina at times and vice versa, but they do not hate each other! Do they love each other? No, but there is potential.

I think Emma and Regina in a relationship would be awesome! They have more chemistry than any existing romantic pairing on the show (*cough* Snowing). Plus they would be hot together and provide for a perfect ending to a fairy tale.
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How can you say that there's sexual tension there? It makes absolutely no sense to me.
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Precisely! Maybe I'm wrong in saying that they still hate each other, but I swear I'm watching different shows than others so much. I think some are seeing what they want to see with those two. It's like, "Oh, hey, Henry, you want Regina to be good? How 'bout she starts scizzoring with your biological mom? Good? Good."
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This comment section has for me opened up my eyes to a lot of opinions. Apart from the swan queen issues, one thing I keep seeing is how people feel Less Sympathetic towards Regina after the episode.
So literally all the character development she went through the entire season 2 is being subdued by an episode that takes place a day after she cast the curse? This woman is more flawed than the amount of hydrogen in sun. And given she still struggles with that need for love, but the woman who chased a father on the streets for his son became the woman who gave up magic and let his son of ten years live with the Charming's. Then yeah she got accused of murder, Cora came, mess mess mess and she is probably on the path of destruction again. But that was character development nevertheless.
Don't Sympathize. Understand the brink she is trying to return from.
And she will never return if there is never going to be a chance.
So basically it will be 'See, we told you, you aren't good because evil can turn good overnight without a helping hand.' I am hoping for the sake of my favorite character that's not the case.
Also I know we all have favorites and we do form a sort of bias. So I am just providing my point of view.
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This is a really well articulated point & a great comment, thank you for posting it. The character motivations across the board on this show have been from the outset super-stylized and from a heightened reality and sort of bananas (Regina hated Snow all those years because when she was 8 she couldn't keep a secret) but they've gone out of their way, especially in season 2, to reinforce that Regina was a fundamentally loving and good person who was warped by a literally heartless mother and magic (more and more they're linking magic with evil with a loss of the ability to love) That's why I'd argue her sacrifice of magic for Henry's sake (she gave up magic when he asked her to, she didn't cast the spell on him) goes a long way in redeeming her.
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I think Regina and Emma starting a relationship would be a beautiful story of salvation and redemption through the power of true love. It would be fitting for Emma the Savior to save Regina in this manner since Emma is the product of true love. Regina has always longed for love her entire life and Emma is the perfect person to offer it to her.
The step-grandmother issue is not a problem for a number of reasons. First, Regina and Snow never had a mother/daughter relationship. Regina despised her form the moment she knew that Snow had told Cora about Daniel. In one episode Snow told Charming's mother that she grew up without a mother, clearly indicating that she did not consider Regina as any kind of mother to her. Also it's not like Regina was around acting as Emma's grandmother. She wasn't there baking her cookies and sending her $5 dollar checks on her birthday. The first time Regina laid eyes on Emma, she was 28 years old and standing in front of her house with their son.
So I hope that the show will go in that direction and have Emma and Regina fall in love. It would be a fascinating and unexpected direction that is full of numerous storyline possibilities.
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I can hate my grandmother, but she's still my grandmother.
(P.S. I luv my grandmama)
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In your case yes, you can hate your biological grandmother, (which you don't), and she will still be related to you by blood and still be your grandmother.
My point about Emma and Regina is that they are not related by blood and they never had any kind of familial bond or relationship as Emma was growing up. Emma did not even know that Regina existed until she came to Storybrooke on her 28th birthday.
Regina never considered Snow her daughter and Leopold was long dead before Emma was born. The loveless marriage that Regina was forced into only created the most tenuous of connections to the White family and that was severed the moment Leopold died.
With these factors in mind, Emma would never consider Regina her grandmother, step or otherwise.

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Damn nice job, Lily! You've broached an important topic for discussion, in a forum that tends to attract intelligent, well-spoken people. As a result, your audience actually has the pleasure of reading the different opinions out there, without having the discussion highjacked by the loudest and most hateful. I hope that a lot of our nation's LGBTQ youth are reading this forum, as the opinions tend to be expressed in a thoughtful manner. These are good kids, who are just trying to figure out a difficult issue, and we are losing too many of them. I hope that a lot of them are reading this forum, and I hope that they realize that a lot of people speaking in support of Swan Queen are straight! The world isn't as divided as some would like us all to believe. Nice job, Lily. Nice job, forum!
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Okay, I tend to avoid the comment sections of sites because they're prone to get messy--which quite frankly, it kind of has here, but things needed to be addressed.

First and foremost, I am asexual, so I have a propensity to exempting myself from supporting or having any agenda when it comes to all things heteronormative versus the severe lack of LGTBQ representation in mainstream media. It's been observed that people are inclined to dismiss the idea of a romantic relationship between Regina/Emma as a potential plot-line for the show for several reasons. One: "They're not gay." Two: "I don't see it"; "it makes zero sense;" "shipping them is delusional." And three: "this is a disney show;" "you can't expect to have your erotic fan fic integrated into a family television show." These reasons are all terribly narrow-minded and are a prime example of a population that refuses to recognize that anything outside of how they live their life and what they deem to be acceptable exists. And that, quite frankly, is truly the most delusional thing in regards to these arguments.

To say a character "is not gay" based on the fact that you have only seen them partnered with a member of the opposite sex is ridiculous. Sexuality, like every other aspect of human nature, does not follow some strict black and white guideline. It's fluid and people fall somewhere on a vast spectrum, but that doesn't mean they are going to be stagnant and remain in that singular spot forever. Not to mention, by saying that, you are denying the existence of bisexuals, demisexuals, and pansexuals.

If you don't see the chemistry in a pairing and don't ship it, that's fine. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist and isn't detectable by other audience members and that their opinions should be discredited on account of you. I feel the chemistry between Regina and Emma and I'd be happy if they at least became friends by the end of the series. Not to mention that the show has laid out well-written parallels within the back-stories of these two characters. It's been expressed that Regina and Emma are two sides of the same coin and that they both seek the same thing: love and family. And yes, I'd love to see it progress to more than a simple tentative friendship because like many have said, such a relationship would be monumental for the LGBTQ community.

Which brings me to my last point. Romantic relationships between two women or two men--or anyone in-between for that matter--is in no way different from that of a man and woman, nor is it inherently erotic or pornographic and therefore unsuitable for children. Love is love and children understand that. I grew up noticing homosexuality in the children shows I watched and I didn't give a damn as long as I was entertained by the story. It only becomes a problem when children are sheltered and are then "released into the wild" and realize not everyone is a zebra with the same pattern of stripes--hell not everyone is a zebra to begin with. (weird analogy, but the point still stands.) Disney deals with fairytale characters, yes, but that does not mean they have a monopoly on them and that fairytales--which by nature are reflective of the society in which they are part--cannot be altered to fit into the social context in which they currently stand. If Disney allows the writers to go there, they should as it can be a big step for the corporation to catch up with the times and cash in where they can. Also, a true love/ fairytale oriented story that includes the LGBTQ community is important because for all these years they have been exempt from the idealistic happy ending as though it was unobtainable for anyone who was homosexual. Which is a very backwards way of thinking and its about time that it changes.

Then the step-grandmother deal with a Regina/ Emma relationship. We all like Harry Potter, right? Nearly everyone in the Wizarding World was blood related, granted some more distantly than others, but that didn't stop that confusing family tree from expanding now did it. Regina having been Snow's step-mother due to a non-consensual marriage does not mean she has to forever consider herself a mother figure to Snow decades after Leopold's death. If Snow still sees her as such, that's her own problem.

Now to the questions the OP presented, I don't think Snow's little attempt at assisted -suicide was that illogical. I mean the issue really only surfaces when she decides to ask for a mercy killing at the hands of the one person who wants her to suffer. If she's in such pain and misery, not so much for killing as the underhanded way she went about it, pleading Regina for help wasn't exactly a plan well executed. Regina is probably reveling a bit in Snow stewing in her own juices. She buried the grave, now it's time to lay in it.
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Demisexual? That's a new one. Pansexual- is it describing the state of finding everything sensual (mentioned as a Tantric concept, but it's a valid description of a particular trance state regardless of religious affliation)?

I think the fact that Emma and Regina met as adults, and could therefore possibly be attracted to each other sexually, doesn't require them to be. Both (like many lesbians) have had relationships with men in the past and found them wanting- which does not force them into finding each other as "True Love".

While I can sympathise with those who want a Swan Queen household (not least of all for Henry's benefit), I can't regard it as the inevitable "fairy-tale" solution to the custody dilemma. The fact that the women in this show have such great chemistry with each other rather than their men (always excepting Robert Carlyle, who probably could seduce a statue!) is unfortunately to be laid at the writers' collective door- give the guys a few lines to work with, rather than lame one-liners even the speaker cringes at, and we'd see something like!

As for the business with Snow, I quote Sadie Shapiro (can't recall her author's name, sadly)- "To kill yourself, there's always time. But not after." I have every confidence that if Regina had in fact crushed the darkening heart, Snow would find herself in the flaming Disco hell, trapped forever watching all the bad choices her Charming would make without her. (Like taking up with Regina, also a fanfic favorite- tell me she couldn't do it if she had a clear field!)

Snow wants forgiveness, or absolution, or maybe just to stop hurting- but hasn't yet grasped the lesson (so succinctly put by Robert Carlyle! whose character is truly in a position to know it) that you make the best choice you can at the time, the only thing you can do- and keep saying it until maybe you can actually believe it.

Makes me want to send a competent psychiatrist to Storybrooke- or even Dr Phil, since Archie is obviously going to need reinforcements!
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Good points. In any case, I don't think the characters Emma and Regina have any potential for friendship, much less romance, as long as they are competing as mothers for Henry. They were always as wary as two new cats together.

But wouldn't it be ironic if EMMA got a transformative lesson in mother love because REGINA sacrificed herself for Henry? Only we can't lose Lana Parilla, who with Robert Carlyle is the flawed beating heart of the series, even though I have mixed feelings about these psychopaths. Seriously, when are there going to be any police investigations and prosecutions for murder, arson, and kidnapping in this town?

I guess there wouldn't be any dramatic story had Regina behaved like a grownup and (a) from the git-go gotten a restraining order against the Charmings -- that Sheriffs Emma and David would have to enforce, ironically-- before Regina showed her dangerously unfit side or (b) worked out a modest, consistent visitation schedule with Emma & new grandparents.

BTW, Snow-- overreaction there. Way over, even if Cora was the first person you ever killed in Storybrooke. Not that Ginnifer doesn't do a beautiful job of milking it.

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You mentioned (and dismissed) three excellent reasons to hate the idea of Emma+Regina. None of them is narrow-minded or delusional.

To say that neither of these characters are gay or bi because we haven't seen either of them show any sexual interest in women is no more ridiculous than saying that Emma is not playing World of Warcraft six hours a day because there's been no hint of that. The writers have had almost two years to show us who these characters are, and there hasn't been any kind of hint about any of them being bisexual or playing World of Warcraft. The former is a bigger part of who the person is, so we would have been more likely to see evidence of it. We would be especially likely to have seen evidence of Regina's bisexuality by now, since she does exactly what she feels like, no matter what anyone thinks about it. She would certainly have had a harem of female love slaves with their hearts in wooden boxes. The show wouldn't have shown it to us in that way, but we should at least have seen more super hot female servants, and a hint of intimacy.
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I agree, partially. Because unlike some of the people here, I don’t believe we've already “seen” it onscreen, so far (or at least I didn't). I only saw friction, strong friction, but then I guess - that can translate into anything? Just like I can totally imagine Emma sitting and playing WoW six hours a day. (And bless you for that image! :) But as for evidence of their prior sexual exploits, or in Regina’s case harem/ hot servants - nope. I don’t think we’d see that, even if it was the case. Because you see, THAT, at least makes absolute sense because, being deeply damaged emotionally, forced into a loveless marriage (where she put up with godknows what, because again do we even want to know why such an old man married a conveniently beautiful young woman?) I don’t think it’d be intimacy she’d seek. Because I see her forcing herself onto Graham (and only him, for a VERY long time?) as something completely logical. He was willful and strong MAN (bereft of mercy, and all that blah) and very independent, so having him as a "sex slave" had more to do with her assertion of pure power (or taking her power BACK in that way?) rather than something simply sexual. (Not that I justify what she did, but hey). And that’s also a thing why I personally could also see why Emma would be a… challenge? Someone who stands up to her, despite everything?

So yes, my point - just because you didn't see something onscreen and that it wasn't explicitly covered it doesn't mean that it can't BE there. For example, Willow Rosenberg (BtVS) was completely straight, and in love with two guys, right? Also in a loving, committed relationship. So when we got a "hint" (though most of us took it as an awesomely ridiculous and yet funny joke?) of something different - it was mid S3? And when she "became" (sorry, using this term loosely, for the lack of a better word) gay, it was well deep into S4? Soooo, since this show is very young (and here's a hoping that it doesn't get axed due to crappier writing, too much wasted time on inconsequential characters, etc - and much lower ratings in S2) there IS time for everything. And the IDEA is there, and if it holds water (which, if we ask me it does) well. You get it. So, given time and good writing anything can happen. *shrug* Network naturally won't do it, because that would (for most of us simple-minded heteros, sadly) immediately translate into "porn", so... damn shame, really. If nothing, then simply because it holds the potential to be groundbreaking.
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If she took Graham as a sex puppet because he was a strong and independent character who had let her down, and she secretly prefers women, wouldn't she have wanted to do the same to Snow?

I liked Willow and Tara. I thought that was just good character development. I know exactly what hint you have in mind. I took it as a joke too. When I rewatched Buffy a few years later, I was just thinking "holy **** they were planning it *this* early?"

I think what people are asking for here is more like having Willow hook up with Drusilla or Darla, or like having Xander hook up with Spike, without anything like the preparation they gave Buffy and Spike. That took what, two years to set up?

When Lily suggested it, I thought it was by far the worst idea I have ever heard about a TV show. I had a hard time imagining that even a single person would agree with her. I didn't expect that the site would be invaded by LGBTs who came here just to support this idea.
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Oh, God, no. Let’s not confuse taking power back from men (as a symbol of being emotionally crushed just to be forced into a sick marriage arrangement with an icky old dude) with the utter abhorrence and hatred she feels for Snow. So, cripes. I guess that yeah, IF she did that (*shudder*) it would be more for purposes of demeaning and humiliation and that… would be too sick, even for her. So, no. No way.

(And for the record, I never said she secretly prefers women - I just implied that for her, sex is power - too. Because she IS that type, isn’t she?)

As for BtVS analogies, I just used Willow as an example of consistent and plausible (and I am glad that you agree) character development (despite the fact that I personally loved her with Oz, and I didn't care much for Tara) that COULD equally plausibly happen here as well, given time - should the story be taken there. But as for other parallels, that would be nothing like pairing up Willow with anyone else - especially not with Darla or Dru. And it’s not because they weren’t inclined that way (because vampires in BtVS are also traditionally very sexual - and there was a text, not just subtext between those two in Angel S2) but simply because they had absolutely NO connection points. So as a better parallel, I’d rather take Buffy and Faith. They were same, and yet horribly different. A prime example of what made the difference between the destiny, who they were meant to be, and where they ended up - after having made different choices - and of course Buffy having had ALL the support from family and friends that Faith never had. And hence - having a unique sense of understanding, in their… animosity and misunderstanding. Kind of like Emma and Regina, in a slightly broader sense.

And for the record, LBGT - no, not me. But I am not opposed to same sex pairings. Especially when it comes to Emma Swan - a strong, self-reliant (albeit damaged) female hero, who does NOT need to be paired with anybody (esp. not with a big strong manly man - hell, look at how having daddy figure butchered her in S2) at all. Because, why the hell SHOULD she? To comply our narrow heteronormative idea of princess having to marry a prince, for the happy ending? Pft. But even so, who WOULD be (and yeah, maybe it’s just me, but I couldn’t stand anyone with Buffy after Angel for the exact same reason) equal enough for her?

No one.

None of the characters I’ve seen so far are even remotely there (plus, there’s this YUK factor of Bae being kajillion years older than her - when she was a friggin’ minor?) nor she had any chemistry/connection “click”, with ANY of them on that level. So… yes. I would rather see her with Regina. Equally damaged and equally in the need of being healed.
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This was the most intense display of Regina's pathological need for some type of love from someone that I have ever seen. I'm glad that we now know who Ethan Embry's character is, but this was just plain odd. I feel no greater sympathy for Regina now than I did before watching this episode, in fact I feel a lot less sympathy for her. If the purpose of telling this story was to make Regina look more sympathetic, I would say epic fail.
I like the fact of David confronting Rumple on how he owes Snow his life and thus more than a few favors. And he admitted that he owed someone. And he stood up to Regina paying back one of those favors.
Also, Henry. Where do I begin? This kid is starting to annoy me. Ever since he found out that Emma lied to him about his father being dead he's been riding the high horse of a sugar-high 5 year old. I know he's only 11 years old (or something like that), but his maturity from the first season has pretty much evaporated and transformed into an annoying naivety. Sometimes it's nice to get the simple perspective of a child, but when that child takes turns guilt tripping his birth mom and his adoptive mom he loses the right to give his opinion on family issues.
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On paper, I have absolutely no sympathy for Regina. She's a serial murderer and attempted kidnapper. Like, what is there to sympathize with?
However, Regina as played by Lana Parrilla turns into something else. Lana gives a depth and vulnerability to Regina that fundamentally makes her sympathetic. I don't think this episode would have happened if Lana wasn't playing Regina. I also don't think this major redemptive arc she's making would have become such a huge part of season 2. More and more they're linking magic with an inability to love/being a sociopath and showing that Regina is willing to put magic aside to earn Henry's love.
The caveat to all this of course is that this show is basically bananas and lives in not one but TWO incredibly heightened realities where when we apply the real world sense of right and wrong everyone involved in this is incredibly amoral and irreparably broken.
That said I totally agree with you on Henry. He is a true little shit.
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Reason why Swan Queen is the perfect ending, SWEN isn't making this up and were are not delusional
Right now they are both to screwed up to be in a relationship but why can't go from Enemies to friends then something more
1) Because if Emma were a man Swan Queen would be obvious from the begging
2)Love/Hate relationships are not impossible and most of the time the most amazing
3)modern day Romeo and Juliet
4)Emma was the only person to stand up to Mayor Mills,
5)They have the best banter ever
6)Emma is the only person who could cut down Regina's tree and still be standing
7) Because Regina is the reason Emma stayed in StoryBrooke
8)Emma made Regina magic work
9)There are several parallels between Emma and Daniel
10)Emma has saved Regina's life
11)Regina has saved Emma's life
12)They share a son, and can't agree on much other then they both love him
13) Emma broke Regina's curse, which could be symbolic of something deeper
14)There are many parallels between Snowing and Swan Queen
15) They are yin and yang/ two sides of the same coin
16) Regina will never have to see any one crush Emma's heart
17)They were both manipulated into there destiny
18)They both want love, a home, and a family they just go about getting it differently
19) How funny would it be to see Snow's face when she found out.
20)When Emma wish not to be alone on her birthday, Henry showed up to take her home to Henry and Regina
21)The show is about true love, true love doesn't care if you are black, white, a man or a woman.
22)Emma is the only person to say "She isn't the Evil Queen here, she is just Regina"
23)Eye Sex
24)This is not just some lesbian agenda, I am not gay and I totally ship it because it is a really good love story and you don't have to be gay to see it
25)Adventures with Cora Mills greatest Swan Queen fan fic ever you will fall in love with all the charters you hate and see that they can be more than what they are.
26)Emma opens the door for Regina without pants. Regina tosses Emma an apple, and Emma catches it (an ancient Greek marriage proposal and acceptance of the proposal).
27)Enjoy my shirt because that's all you're getting."--Emma is wearing Regina's shirt.
28)Regina asks Emma for help with Henry. Regina & Emma almost kiss at the mine. Regina: "He's my son." Emma: "He's my son too. You've been sitting behind a desk for 10 years. I can do this." Regina steps in close,"Just bring him to me." Regina stares down at Emma's lips. The tension is smoking. Emma blushes and looks down, unable to look her in the eye as she backs away
29)
Divorced lesbian mommies in a custody battle. "Miss Swan, I'm giving you 30 minutes with Henry. Take him out. Buy him ice cream." Emma & Regina wear the same red turtleneck. Regina makes the comment, "True Love's Kiss will break any curse"--leading to the logical conclusion that to break the curse, the Savior must be the True Love of the Evil Queen who cast the curse in order to be the only one who can break it. (Sadly, this isn't how the curse breaks, but it would make a LOT of sense.)
30)Emma slays a dragon and immediately afterwards unties Regina who has been bound and gagged to a chair. White Knight, Damsel in Distress
31) Episodes 2 through 7 (at least all the ones we see Regina in): Regina wears Emma's shirts while Emma is in FTL
32)If Regina never cast the curse Henry would never have been born
33)Season one Regina had no concept of personal space
34)Sometimes Princesses don't need a prince to be happy
35)It's one of the few things that actually makes sense on this show
Clearly I am a delusional Swan Queen shipper who only see what I want to see. Why do all of these things and not be end game.
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Are people seriously hoping Emma and Regina will end up being lesbos? NO THANKS! That would be completely stupid and not believable at all seeing as they both loved MEN. This sounds like a perverted male viewer's fantasy and nothing else. If they make any of the female characters currently in the show to be lesbians, then I am no longer watching the show.
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Enjoy your hate filled life.
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It's not hate and it has nothing to do with me not being able to accept gay couples, but the fact that that would make THIS story stupid because it doesn't fit in. That's why. If they introduced a new character who was gay I'd have no problem.

BTW, I don't need a lecture on all the -sex'es that exists... Just because it exists doesn't mean it always fit in in every story.
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There's such a thing such as bisexuality or pansexuality....
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wow that was good yes yes too all this
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You my friend deserve a cookie!!
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Awesome article. Totally agree that Emma and Regina having a relationship would be quite a gamechanger. It would do what the writers keep saying is the goal and bring everyone together.
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Or blow the family apart completely- also a dramatic prospect!
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I agree that Grimms' versions are much darker than the "Bowlderised" versions Disney made familiar to us all- try asking your favorite anthropology or sociology professor about the views of society promulgated by the stories a culture tells.

"Don't Bet on the Prince" has an amazing essay on the eroticism and subliminal symbolism in the illustrations used for published versions of "Little Red Riding Hood" in different eras.

"Twisted erotic fairy tales"- try Tanith Lee or Storm Constantine; Tanya Huff is lighter in tone than both, but LOL-funny. Joanna Russ is more SF than fantasy most times, but will stretch your brain.

Has it occurred to anyone else that this sort of buzz is part of what HoroKitz hoped to accomplish with these "girl-power" updates?
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I'm sorry, the fact that you have emphasized "oversexualization" and compared a fictional tv show to real life programs has me stuck.

First, don't talk to the LGBTQIA community about "oversexualization" right after we watched Snowing snuggle naked in bed, Corum perving over their evil plots, Rumbelle and their 300+ lizardman love, and blatant hints to Ruby's escapades.
Not to mention all the other "Family" shows that do worse on ABC. Hell, right now, I'm pretty sure the only stable couple on Grey's Anatomy that has not had a sex scene this season is the lesbian one.

Then comparing fictional characters to reality show people. Really? Since it is, you know, real life, I'm sure they do what they want. If two real-life dudes have chemistry, then people will notice, if not, people don't care.

" just because something might be considered acceptable doesn't mean all viewers want to see it all the time"- taken from you.
I think, and correct me if I'm wrong, this is an argument the LGBTQIA community makes. ALL. THE. DAMN. TIME. Just because it is something most people deem okay, does not mean everyone wants to see it everywhere all the time. I'm talking about the heteronormativity that you and people like you get to enjoy.
Sex scenes, kissing, holding hands, and other forms of affection that help you connect with the fictional characters of you love that other people don't get.

Seriously take a moment and just think of the many, many privileges you get just from being straight. Think of how people react to you and your loved one compared to how people react to "abnormal" couples, and maybe you may start to understand why we feel this way.

In all honesty, I want you to think long and hard about Emma and Regina and their interactions, their personalities, their experiences, and tell me that, without a doubt, if one were a man, they would NOT go there.

Having a lesbian couple on a show does not make it a gay show (Lost Girl, Glee, Grey's Anatomy, The Good Wife, Pretty Little Liars [the lesbian was not originally a lesbian in the books], Chicago Fire, Emily Owens MD, Scandal, American Horror Story, I could go on and on) and does not automatically mean politics. Hell, gay marriage is legal in Maine, so politics wouldn't matter anyway.

I believe that your opinion is yours, think what you want, but when you share it, you need something better than the undertone of, "It makes me uncomfortable, so I don't want to see it, and other people think so, too." Try and use the show itself to prove your point, instead of your feelings.
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The story between them does NOT make them fit together even if one of them was male. We do not need gay characters in EVERY show just because some people want to be so damn politically correct.
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That goes for a lot of couples on shows, but that does not mean that the producers would not try and force it. I've seen some really forced chemistry in my day, so saying that means nothing.

I think that had one of them been a man, there would have at least been some type of seduction for the sake of launching a plan against the other. There would be some type of "maybe you can get together and raise him together like a normal family." from everyone. The show would without a doubt go there.

And your little "politically correct" comment is offensive, and in my opinion stupid.

Just because people want to be seen does not mean that we want to be in every show. We just want to be able to turn on the freaking tv and watch a show where there is a character we can connect with.

If we want that now, there are less than a handful of shows that can make us feel like you do when you watch tv.

I know that you specifically would probably prefer we stuck to our designated channels, neighborhoods, stores, and websites, but we as a whole are getting tired of being ignored, stereotyped ("at least you are represented" is never a good excuse for stereotyping) and stigmatized as "the ones we add for a little while for shock value then get rid of."

Really dude, stop reading that "War on White Men" bs, and get educated on the minorities (various races, women, lgbtqia, etc.) through reliable resources. I know it will be a little tough for you to fully understand without actually experiencing the hate, but if you connect with the right people (some real people, too) they can steer you in the right direction.
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So in that case we no longer need any sort of minority presence in shows or children or women, just a bunch of fat white guys drinking beer right?
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Have you ever read any of the original Grimm's fairy tales? They are also sorts of twisted erotic and messed up (Sleeping Beauty all about necrophila. Red Riding Hood is about losing your virginity. In Cinderella, some versions have the stepsister's eyes being pecked out by birds) Just because Disney white washed them, doesn't mean that they are the true version. And actually you be surprised at what happens in the internet. Also, really? All we want is a god damn romantic love story, where someone who has had a fucked up life and past gets a happy ending. That is what we want. We want an honest reflection of our lives, of our desire to have romance happen.

So basically because you are saying that because it's Disney we can have an abusive controlling relationship (Rumbelle), a woman of color being sold into sexual slavery by her white mother to a man twice her age and to be a nurse maid, a 300 year old man committing statutory rape, werewolves and dwarves being treated like second class citizens. But yet, two women being a couple, working on being a family for their son, and trying to have a loving relationship despite all the shit they've been through is erotic twisted fanfiction?

Really now? Try again. Do not let your ignorance rule your life. Educate yourself. We want the same thing that hetrosexual couples take for granted. We want to be able to see a loving relationship, a family raising their kid together, we want to be able to walk down the street holding our love one's hand without fear of being acted or spat at. Excuse us for shaking your hetronormal bubble but we will not be quiet anymore.

We want our happy endings, we want to see them represented on television. We want to see a woman who has a desire to be love and that has had it rejected so many times to find a lasting love along that helps her become a better person like many of us have experienced. If we get to see Charming in bed with Snow and hugging and kissing her all the time ( Even when Anton [who, hey, is another race and looked at as a threat, Walt would be proud Adam and Eddie!] was about to die! Really y'all? Man needs rescuing, enough with the true love crap) what is so wrong with us getting to see Emma and Regina holding hands, saying I love you, and sharing a kiss before taking Henry to work?

Check your facts before spewing your ignorance.
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The way you interpret fairytales are ridiculously stupid. It's like you're one of those people that look for things that are not there. Necrophilia, LOL!
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Wow...please educate yourself before commenting.
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In one of the earliest versions of "Snow White" the sleeping princess is wakened by the nursing of the twins she bore during her "sleep"- call it rape or necrophilia, but it's DARK!
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In his defense, the ORIGINAL Grimm fairy tales were dark as heck. Ignoring the metaphors the grandparent tried to make, there were explicit dark and creepy stuff in there. Over the years they were white washed so companies like Disney could have an easier time marketing them to kids. Gory vivesections and I think some rape.
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Two mothers raising their son together as a couple would definitely make 'a twisted erotic fan fic'.
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I do think its interesting that Regina is allowed to have a brainwashed casual-sex slave who is a guy (Graham) on a family show, but not a committed lesbian relationship.
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Hi Lily, thanks for the response.

Regina and Graham sex subplot: I agree that it's a total double standard, but unfortunately it's also a relatively safe gamble that uncommitted heteros hooking up isn't going to make anyone bat an eye.

Brainwashing: it's pretty clearly presented that Regina controlling Graham is bad, and presenting a villain doing a bad thing isn't shocking in and of itself.

Committed lesbian relationships: in the 70's it was popular for a show to have "the token black person"; in the 80's and early 90's it was the "token handicapped person". Now it's "the token gay person". As you know, this is a combination of reading the contemporary society's tea leaves, plus the cold, hard facts of demographics: on the one hand they want to be seen as being fair (whether they are or not) and maybe presenting something *a little* controversial just for the sake of keeping up interest; on the other hand they want maintain a certain level of "relatedness" with the majority of their viewers (and obviously we aren't talking about director/creators like Joel Surnow or Aaron Sorkin, whom you could argue have specific agendas).

If a show under-represents gays, then people invested in some way in gay issues might get upset or impatient. But if it over-represents gays, most of the non-gays watching will, despite how they feel about the issue morally or politically, find less to relate to. Most of society isn't gay, so unless you're talking about a show devoted to gay issues or themes, or one that is purposely trying to be titillating, you're not going to get much. From OUaT, I wouldn't expect more than an off-hand "oh by the way, Tiny's gay" sort of thing.

Having a gay relationship be a central point of the show (as Regina + Emma would be) would define the show as "that gay fairy tale show" to most viewers whether that's fair or not. That may go over fine on the Syfy Channel where the demographics are young and liberal, or on HBO where people expect anything, but not on a major network family-touted show from Disney.

So while I like your episode reviews, I found the pining for gay subplots (or main plots) in OUaT to not be your best work. Realistically, the most you're likely going to see is a single gay secondary character who mentions it once and then drops it entirely, which seems more insulting than progressive to me.

As to my other point about over-sexualization: I like the show more or less as it is, and any over-reliance on sex plots, hetero or gay, would annoy me. Beyond that, I would find a sudden gay relationship between two main characters to be a distracting, shark-jumping, politically motivated moment that wouldn't make me stop watching, but would make me enjoy the show less because it would be jarringly inconsistent and condescending to gay people. You may not see it as inconsistent, but I do, and I'd imagine most viewers are, like me, not expecting homosexuality to make its way to the forefront of this show.

And I know you know how obnoxious inconsistency in OUaT can be.

Cheers
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Answer me this Ninjaandy, what do you classify Snow and Charming waking up post coitus? remember that scene earlier this season? Is it a variation of what you chose to call "twisted erotic fan fic" ? or is that okay because it fits your hetero way of looking at life? To add on that point, I don't ever recall any fairy tale, as you put them "Disney ones" in this case Snow White, having sex and waking up the next morning in bed next to prince charming...oh but wait once again you must be right, it's "okay" to see that at on tv because they're a straight couple ::sigh:: Also, care to share the names of these "plenty" of shows with lesbians in them? You seem to think that we have a lot of representation in the media, allow me to burst your bubble and tell you that's not true.
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I agree, that would be a bad business move for any network that pursues profit. Mostly because large majority of people would see that just like you – in a simplified "twisted erotic fan fic" and “oversexualization” kind of way (no thanks to same networks that use a “sex sells” recipe, so you’re trained to see sex, and not romance). So until we, heteronormatives, keep seeing lesbian relationship as something akin to simple pornography… this world will not be ready for the first gay Disney princess.
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Why dose 2 woman being in a loving relationship always equal "twisted erotic fan fic" can't we show all kinds of family's on a family show. I just don't understand the logic. I want a deep emotional connection and a family coming together not a twisted dirty fan fic. It could be and epic love story, not something sick it could be truly beautiful. I don't think you ant-gay just misinformed. It's not the fact they are both woman it's the fact it could be an epic love and if Emma was a man I would still ship it.
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Hi halo, thanks for your reply. I think we're concentrating on different aspects of this issue; you can check out my reply to Lilly above if you're interested in my further (and for time-purposes, final) take.
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oh crap, never mind...
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Did anyone else think of 'Groundhog Day' when they showed the repeated scenes of Regina waking up, and going through the same motions with Gepetto, Mr. Gold, Archie, etc.?

Hope no one else has mentioned this already. Lazy me didn't feel like reading all the 222 comments.
:)

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I kept thinking the same thing... Henry would have grown up and went to grade 1 got older and went to 2 and so on.. all the rest of the kids were not getting older PLUS it would be the same every day...Is that why he know his town was F'd up? He should have mentioned the time loop to Emma as proof of weirdness in the first season... of course Emma showing up caused time to pass again.. but still.
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Lots of posters, and I think even the reviewer mentioned it.

But yeh, that was kind of lame. I still wonder what school was like for Henry... Oh great I get to build ANOTHER bird house. Also, how messed up WAS Gipetto's sign if it was still broken after 10,000+ fixes?

And if Gold was honest when he said "He's ALWAYS known he was Rumple" then he was living a hellish existence... making sure he always made the same walk at the same time of day so Regina didn't notice him out-of-place. Doing the same thing every day by CHOICE so he wouldn't get found out. BUT, according to someone the writers said he didn't remember until Emma came along.

But it's hard to see the up-side for Regina. Great, people are forced to live a meaningless life but they don't know any better or mind. As far as they're concerned she's just their mayor. So, big deal. The only thing she really got out of the deal is she could take a nap and not have to worry about Snow's armies pestering her every day. Hooray?
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I think Mr Gold sensed that there was more to life than Storybrook- if Regina didn't leave town herself to get Henry, he'd have been the logical one to send. It's possible that the memory-loss spell was erected afterward- unless it's the explanation for the food deliveries? "I dropped off the groceries in Storybrooke, and nothing interesting happened" scenario.

Seriously, though- most people see what they want to see. Besides thinking that Ruby was pretty hot, your average delivery guy might not wonder about the town at all.

Back to Gold- if he didn't forget his entire self (I'm making the assumption that "The Dark One" slept while there was no magic, or didn't make any attempt at resurgence if Gold wasn't holding the Dagger), then what has he been thinking while sitting in the pink Victorian drinking good Scotch? Remembering his son is missing. Which is a whole 'nuther type of hell, y'know?
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Yeah I know, my fault. I just skimmed the review quickly and somehow managed to avoid the first sentence with the reference in it, lol.

the close up shot of her waking up reminded me of the Lost episode openers also.

Really, though, how boring for Regina. Most of the characters didn't even change their clothes from day to day. Except Ruby, who had a different ho outfit each time...

Now I'll read all the comments.

Kinda late for the party this week!
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Emma and Regina being endgame is the only way this show would even make sense. Really though. It's literally THE perfect fairytale ending. Love conquering all the Savior saving the Evil Queen... I don't even understand how people can question that. Also, they already share a kid. I think that says enough xD

That being said, I wouldn't want it to happen for at least a few seasons. They are not exactly in a lovey place right now, lol.
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I know Regina is very troubled, but I keep rooting for her. I like to think that all the bad she has done is because of magic. Because magic makes people do bad things. Look at what magic is doing to snow, who is suppose to have the purest heart. I think there is still hope for Regina. Looking forward too seeing what it does to Emma, because clearly magic, regardless of it being good or bad, makes people darker. If The Regina/Emma pairing happens, wow, how awesome and brave! Snow took away Regina's first love (indirectly) how beautiful that she would be the one to give her her true love (Emma). But first, both Regina and Emma must gain emotional intelligence.They are like preteens emotionally. This episode was one of my favorite's this season. Lana is incredible! I do wish they would stop introducing new characters because that is totally taking away from the show for me! Stop it OUAT creators!!!!!!
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I for one would like Emma and Regina to be a couple. It would make for and interesting story line. When I started to watch OUAT, I basically went into this show thinking about the predictability of fairy tale relationship. What would keep me interested in watching a show about people defeating their enemies and finding their happily ever after?There was some thing and I could see it from episode 1 when Emma met Regina for the first time. Emma blatantly looks at Regina's chest while asking if she has anything stronger than apple cider. By episode 5 at the mines I thought they were going to kiss. I'm sorry but this goes far beyond the actresses having good chemistry. This is the writers, director(s), editors, wardrobe and music department that look at a scene and says, I do or do not want that there because it's not meant to come across as what it seems.
I can see them as a family because as Eddie Kitsis has said Emma and Regina want the same thing. They want love and family. They are both just going about different ways in getting it. How will they both get what they want? Be together like a family. A messed up but workable family. Or one has to relinquish control over Henry or maybe they can share him like divorced parents. Which will not make anyone happy. Or maybe hopefully not..one has to die.
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For the record, "Modern Guilt" really isn't all that depressing of a Beck song/album, at least not compared to "Sea Change."
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I was going for funny titles...for sad Beck, Lost Cause is maybe the most tragic song ever.
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I went through a breakup in '04 and Lost Cause was my jam. No joke.
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If the Emma/Regina parallels are done on purpose, and the actresses are being directed and supported to play their scenes with that much tension, then the show is about to create a truly original and well-developed primary relationship between two women in primetime. THAT would be amazing. Emma Swan would be the first gay/bi Disney Princess, talk about history!
If they're not, and they're going to keep throwing these boring, bland dudes that even with her best efforts JMo can't make interesting, then OUaT will decline into 'just another' show. The other ships aren't particularly original or interesting - Snowing is a fait accompli, and Espenson's ladyboner for Rumple means OF COURSE he's going to get the girl (Belle) one way or another.
So go there, show. Even people who hate the pairing still see it, and when they claim they don't it smacks of 'protests too much'. Nobody will understand Regina or Emma as well as the other does, and that's the story that's been written. Plus: hot.
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Loved this episode...!! We finally know who the stranger is...Owen!!! Loved the way they showed it to us...going back in time to the first beginning of the curse...!!!
Snow was a bit annoying in this episode...and in the end..it was terrible...Regina should have crushed it...that would be a turn in the storyline...unfortunately...she didn't...now Snow is becoming evil....aha...whatever...!!!
Emma was all over the place this episode, but she didn't seem to have anything to add this episode...
I would it loved it if the kid would have blown up the whole forest...but sad for us...
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About the Regina/Emma thing:

That they for some reason are secretly interested in each other is just something you all are imagining. They are NOT interested in each other, they dislike each other and, as they have shown, are clearly interested in men and not women.

Regina/Emma fans need to stop acting entitled and need to stop acting like the writers own them a big lesbian romance. Just because they don’t write Regina and Emma as a romantic pairing doesn’t mean they don’t like gay people, For example, It’s like asking them “Why are you not writing Snow as someone who has been a man in the past?! I want to see it and you have to let it happen!” It’s not becuase they’re against women who used to be men, it’s because it’s not their vision in the show.

The writers are not fighting against you because to them, there’s nothing to fight agaist for. They’re not writing Emma and Regina scenes as romantic or sexual, that’s somerthing YOU guys see and imagine and that’s not the writers fault.

And oh god, all the parallels I’ve seen written between Emma and Regina and those meaning that they are secretly in love?? No, that’s called over analyzing and picking a part a scene more than it should be picked apart. If you really need to stretch the story that much and pick certian parts and just decide that that must be some hidden meanings and subtext there…I don't know what to say.

Also, Regina is a selfish bitch who cares more about her own happyness than anything else and she doesn't care how she gets it. Even if Emma was interested in women, which will never happen, you really think she would be with someone who caused Snow, her MORTHER, so much pain and tried to kill her several times?? Stop with this delusion.
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Part of watching a show is being an armchair showrunner and imagining what the best and most emotionally satisfying outcome will be. In True Blood, fans were hoping Erik and Sookie would get together long before it actually happened. Spike and Buffy are another example where the characters took on a controversial subtext of their own (remember how furious Angel & Buffy fans got about that pairing?). Sometimes actors have a chemistry or give their characters a depth that re-writes the story. Although I'm pretty sure both actresses are straight, there's no denying the chemistry their characters have and what an elegant solution it would be to the many problems in the story's world...and I like to examine different facets of a show. I don't understand people reacting in anger to the idea of the Regina-Emma connection. I do think if Regina was a male character, it would be a given that the story would resolve this way.
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Oh, wow. If you see Regina as simply a “selfish bitch” and deny her ANY redeeming qualities whatsoever (also denying the writers their effort to have given her SOME character growth, during whole S2?) then it’s no use to wonder where did you get this silly idea of this non-existing romance being imagined (by anyone?) as them being “secretly in love”? Lol. Have you read the article above - at all? Lily talks about the IDEA of them coming together. So… who’s delusional?
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Oh come on. The fact that she has *some* redeeming features doesn't mean that she isn't a selfish bitch. And being a selfish bitch is the *least* disturbing of all her disturbing qualities. She's a mass murderer for fucks sake.

A mass murderer can't redeem herself just by being nice to her child once in a while.
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You know, it’s called “character development” for a reason. It needs to - DEVELOP. And Regina was set on this redemption path, when… eight episodes ago? So if you’re expecting her to change overnight then you have no clue how things work in show-writing (derr, if they redeem the villain immediately - what are they going to do in the continuation of following 6 seasons?) and let alone in literature. Because yes, she is selfish, and a bitch. But if you can banalize her just to that (and to being “mass-murderer”, sorry) I have to wonder if you’ve ever read a single character study piece.
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We are clearly noy watching the same show.
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This post makes me feel like a MORTHERLESS child.
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Regina Mills is the saddest character on TV, almost tragic enough to be an Edith Wharton heroine. She pines for love so keenly that it's hard to watch sometimes, knowing that she's going about it the wrong way. It's even harder to watch her digress into pointless revenge schemes because she wrongly thinks that wounding others will stop her own bleeding. I hope that, over time, OUaT will show Regina growing out of these patterns and grant her some measure of happiness.

A friendship or romance with Emma (equally in need of marrow-deep love) could open up gorgeous vistas of story and character development for both Evil Queen and Savior, as both women need someone to see them, accept them, and love them as they truly are, and not as two-dimensional storybook villains or idealized ciphers. In short, I'd watch and support the shit out of a show brave enough to honorably present their story.
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Brave enough to put in a storyline that doesn't fit? It doesn't matter if it's brave or not; it matters if it works in the story's endgame/finale or not.
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The problem is, Emma is also emotionally damaged. Maybe not at Regina's level but damaged none the less.

It would be an example of the blind leading the blind... into a busy intersection. Regina and Emma trying to prop each other up emotionally would end in disaster.
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YES! Thank you! Finally! I've been shipping them like crazy since the beginning of season 1 and the more the show progresses, the more they make sense. I really hope they have the guts to go there because the chemistry and the potential is amazing.

Swan Queen Nation definitely appreciates your support! :)
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Thank you so much for this review. I agree that the Regina/Emma paring would make perfect sense for Once Upon a Time. It is a story about the power of true love and of family. Queer families are so under-represented in mainstream media and it is time for that to change. This indeed could be a compelling, and emotional romance. Once is retelling traditional fairy tales in a nontraditional way. How beautiful would it be for the White Knight and the Evil Queen to find true love in one another!
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Amazing review!

I’d honestly like to see a poll on this first question. I think that the majority of viewers share this sentiment. I personally feel that if Emma Swan were a male, it would be a foregone conclusion that she’d rescue Regina from her wicked ways.

Regina Mills is in no way blood-related to Snow White, so this wouldn’t be an act of incest. That argument, which many people use to explain their opposition to a Regina/Emma relationship, is ridiculous. Are you like Charming? Are you incapable of actually figuring out how blood relations work? If so, please do not mate with any of my future offspring. Your stupid will taint my gene pool.
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