So, Hansel and Gretel join our cast of characters. Or Nicholas and Ava, to use the names of their Storybrooke counterparts. However, I really have to label this episode as one of the closest things to a filler episode that OUAT has. Particularly since after this episode, these two new additions are never really seen or even mentioned again. (They may appear occasionally in the background, but as no one ever acknowledges their presence, it’s hard to tell.) The main point of this episode seems to be Emma doing what she can to keep Nicholas and Ava from ending up in the foster system, so they won’t go through what she did, particularly since they will undoubtedly be separated if they do wind up in the system. We do get a scene of Henry asking Emma about his father, but the story Emma gives him, about how the baby daddy was a fireman who died saving a family from a burning building? As she admits to Mary Margret later on, it was just that- a story. Personally, I think Emma coming up with this fabrication was a combination of her not wanting to disappoint Henry, and her reluctance to relive what really happened, indicating that that is a scar that never really healed, and for good reason. Overall plot-wise, apart from seeing how Evil Queen Regina actually obtained the infamous Poisoned Apple, it’s not until the end of this episode that things started picking up again. We see Mary Margret having a moment with Emma, who finally tells her Henry’s thoughts about who they really are to each other, followed by Mary Margret reacting to Emma’s baby blanket. Then, in the next scene, Emma is looking at an old article about how a seven-year-old boy found a baby (her) on the side of a road, mere seconds before someone brand new rides into town on a motorcycle. While this newcomer doesn’t give his name at this point, we’ll eventually learn how ironic it was that he made his first appearance right after we’re shown that old article about baby Emma and the seven-year-old.
There’s nothing really more to be said about this episode. Although, I did get a kick out of Evil Queen Regina’s ‘I would’ve gone with gravy.’ (You had to see the episode for this one.) And seeing that Sneezy’s Storybrooke counterpart is Mr. Clark, a man who works at a drugstore. Someone who sneezes randomly, even under the effects of Regina’s curse, ends up working in a drug store? Gotta love this show’s style of humor. On a final note- to my knowledge, this episode marks the point when we start seeing Emma wearing the laces of Graham’s boots around her left wrist. You can see it most clearly in the final scene when Emma is talking with Mary Margret. While it’s not something that’s directly stated or pointed out in the show, the actress who portrays Emma in the show confirmed that it is indeed the shoelace from Graham’s boot in a Twitter post. I do admit I like that little detail, especially since he’s rarely even mentioned from this point on. As I said before, Graham was a likable character, so he deserves to at have an ongoing homage to him.
Ah, another example of history repeating itself. In the Enchanted Forest, Snow White is desperate for a chance to forget about Prince Charming, who is about to marry Midis’ daughter, Princess Abigail. So much so, she actually goes to Rumpelstiltskin for a Forgetfulness Potion. And in Storybrooke, Mary Margret cannot get David out of her head, resorting to borderline stalking by memorizing his schedule. Of course, while the Enchanted Forest plotline ends on a low note, with King George forcing Snow White to tell Charming she doesn’t love him (threatening to have Charming killed if she doesn’t), followed by Snow taking the Forgetfulness Potion, the Storybrooke plotline ends with Mary Margret and David deciding to stop trying to deny their growing feelings for each other. But we’re left with a sense of foreboding, as Regina witnessed their kiss. (Guys, I know you were caught up in the moment and all, but it was really a dumb move to kiss when you were out in the open, standing right along Main Street. ANYONE could have seen you, and they did!)
How adorable were Mary Margret and David in this episode? While I know it’s a longshot, I’d like to think that the dove they try to reunite with her flock is the exact same bird Charming uses to send his letter to Snow White. They certainly look like the same species. If I’m right, how precious is that? The same bird bringing them together twice! And that vet talking about the dove being monogamous birds with Mary Margret and David standing right there? Nice metaphor.
At Regina’s urging, Emma delves into the mystery of who the newcomer we met last episode is. However, we’re not really given any answers. Okay, he has a typewriter. But that explains nothing. Although, now that I think about it, this show is supposed to take place in modern times. At least, it is during the Storybrooke scenes. Who still uses a typewriter? Can you even get typewriter ribbon anymore? I’m sure if you can, it’s not easy to come by, leaving me wondering if it’s worth the effort. So the fact that he has a typewriter instead of a laptop only further makes you wonder just who this guy is. All we get about him are hints that he knows more about Storybrooke than he lets on.
This episode is mostly notable for the small touches. We’re shown the friendship between Snow White and Red Riding Hood for the first time, something that continues popping up again as the story continues. Snow White also has her first meeting with the Seven Dwarfs (Wait, there were originally eight dwarfs? Poor Stealthy.) In addition, we’re also told that Grumpy was once in love with someone, a plot point that’s further explored in a later episode. And there’s Rumpelstiltskin taking one of Snow’s hairs as payment for the Forgetfulness Potion. That’s going to be important later on.