I have been a loyal fan of Once Upon a Time since it first began back in 2011, remaining true through the good times (Red’s storyline), the bad (Henry in Never Land), and the ugly (all of the Frozen references).
What can I say? I’m a child of the 90s and this show is driven by its pandering to fans of the Mouse. You’ve got the Disney references, stretching from the costume design to the plots adapting the films more often than the original fairy tales. But the creators have also taken advantage of ABC’s parent company other properties by bringing in both Star Wars and Marvel homage as well.
This is a show full of Easter Eggs and I’m here to sniff them out.
I’m looking forward to recapping the rest of this season, starting this weekend. Be sure to check in every Sunday after the show to read my thoughts on whatever new twists have gone down in Storybrooke, Maine and my predictions for the next week’s episode. These won’t be spoilers.
Creators Edward Kitsis and Adam Hororwitz are very open and willing to drop hints on upcoming episodes, so if you want spoilers, they are easy to find. Instead, this column is all about bringing back that water-cooler experience, gabbing with your friends and trying to guess what’s in store. That being said, feel free to comment on these articles or find me on Twitter (@virtual_lyzard) if you agree or disagree with my theories.
Happily Ever After?
So how ‘bout a little preview of what you can expect? This half of season four has been all about the “Queens of Darkness,” focusing on how villains can achieve their happy endings. This isn’t a new storyline necessarily. The entire conceit around the Dark Curse was for Regina to take away Snow White and Prince Charming’s happiness and to gain her happiness via schadenfreude. Rumple’s relationship with Belle was all about experiencing the most powerful magic of all, true love. This time ‘round, it has been Ursula, Maleficent, and Cruella de Vil seeking happiness. Ursula already found her happy ending, which I found highly disappointing. Maleficent’s tentacle hentai joke was what set this new arc in the right direction.
That leaves us with Maleficent and Cruella. Last week we found out that Maleficent had a child sent off to our world when she was around the same time as Emma and lo and behold, who does this child turn out to be but Emma’s ex-best friend, Lily! I’m happy to see some good has come from the Frozen half of this season, which was an overall let down for the most part.
Return to Oz
But it looks like Once is gonna put this big revelation on the back burner for now because this Sunday we see the return of Robin Hood and the Wicked Witch. Back in the Enchanted Forest, Rumple sent Robin to Oz in order to steal an object from Zelena. We know he survives this task, but I’m interested in seeing if/how Zelena makes her way back into the present storyline since no one is ever really dead on this show. Except for Neal, RIP.
A Man Named Walt
Oh, and then you’ve got the Author running free around Storybrooke. August/Pinocchio has revealed that the Author isn’t just a person, but a job. What I hope to see is that by season’s end, this Author is killed and a new one is chosen. If I’m right, my money’s on Henry. The character of Henry has really matured this season and he’s probably one of the more logical characters on the show now, which is major growth from Season Three. Sadly, when a character starts being effective, that’s about the time the writers find a way to nerf ‘em.
To Be Continued…
With only five more episodes left there are still plenty of storylines to resolve. There hasn’t even been no hint whatsoever to Cruella’s goal, so perhaps we are going to see the theme of this season carry over into season five, which has yet to be announced. That, or we get the most rushed season finale in Once history.