Once Upon a Time: Manhattan Review

This week’s episode was brought to you by FedEx!

Please refrain from reading until you’ve watched Sunday night’s episode because this review contains spoilers!

Much, much better than last week, Once Upon a Time. We’re back on the right track! This was a tight, intriguing episode. It didn’t have any mind-blowing fairy tale character twists like their best episodes do, but you can’t ask for that every week. This episode delivered exactly what it needed to, and each character reacted in a way that was believable and dynamic. It was written by show creators Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz, and it showed that this episode came from the hands of people who understood these characters best.

True, everyone and their mother predicted that Henry’s father was also Baelfire, but they didn’t make a big deal out of the reveal so I don’t mind so much. Plus, it’s a good story development that should lead to interesting places. The tension between Gold, Neal/Baelfire, Henry, and Emma played out well: not too dramatic but didn’t merely skim over the surface either.



Once again, I found the drama of Storybrook far more interesting than its fairytale counterpart – a complete reversal for me from season one. But the fairy tale flashback was still pretty interesting; I loved the look of the seer. Mystical and creepy, even if she was a rip off of Pan’s Labyrinth. Well, at least they left Harry Potter alone this time.

The final interaction between Dark One Rumple and Grown Ginger Seer was actually my favorite part of the episode, full of wonderful character tension and revelations. And while we already knew too much to make the overall plot line genuinely interesting, the implications of this last scene set up some exciting possibilites. What, the possibility of Rumplestiltskin killing a small child isn’t supposed to be exciting? Clearly you haven’t been stuck with one in a small airplane recently.



Okay, no, I don’t want ol’ Rumple to kill Henry. Nor do I think he will, especially now that he knows Henry’s his flesh and blood. But what exactly will be Gold’s “undoing”? They won’t kill off their most popular character…maybe he loses his powers? I don’t know, but I definitely want to watch and find out. Well done, writers.

I only have two gripes for this episode:

1. Cora, Regina, and Hook are now boring. Shame, because these guys were my favorites before. Lana Parilla still feels awkwardly shallow in her acting, and it hurts me because she was so good before these past two episodes. Maybe she’s just in a slump. Hook, reduced to dutiful stooge, is a waste of swag, so hopefully Cora’s betrayal will push him into a more interesting role. Cora, by the way, has replaced her medieval gowns for a kickass power suit while Hook retains his leather whore couture. Once knows who their demographic is. I’m okay with that.

2. I’m going to place Mila in the Unbelievable Dicks category. I’d understand her resentment towards Rumplestiltskin more if they’d been unhappily married or if she had encouraged him to fight in the wars…but the opening scene shows Mila lovingly asking hubby Rumple not to go fight. So when he returns to raise his son, it doesn’t make sense for her to be that pissed at him. It just wasn’t a believable reaction. The father of your child cripples himself to be with you and your newborn son, like you previously indicated you desired, and how do you react? Like a dick. Mila, meet James and Jack. You guys should have some fun together.

Other Things I Enjoyed

-Charming and Snow discussing their perplexing family tree. Awkward Thanksgiving dinner? That’s an episode I think everybody would like to see. Please to write.

-“You left me and sent me to prison because Pinnocchio told you to!?” I died.

-Regina is gonna get real fat if she now lacks the ability to walk five feet to rifle through a purse manually. But then, the Evil Queen does have a reputation of turning herself into an ugly hag.



Overall, not bad, writers. Hopefully you keep it up. See you in two weeks, fellow Oncers!

What did you think?