Well, we’ve got our first ‘filler’ episode of season 2. But it was nice to see what happened after the events of the ‘Red Handed’ flashback. A month after Red discovered what she was, she and Snow are still on the run together. They encounter a pack of werewolves just like Red, which is led by Red’s long-lost mother, Anita. From them, Red learns how to control her transformations, and how to keep her mind while in wolf form. However, while Red initially plans to part ways with Snow in order to stay with her new pack, things get a bit hairy (no pun intended) when Snow unwittingly leads Evil Queen Regina’s soldiers straight into the werewolf den, resulting in the death of a pack-member, Quinn. Anita plans to have Snow killed as punishment, but Red refuses to allow this and ultimately kills her mother to protect her friend. This little flashback story ends with Red indicating she doesn’t regret her choice, as Snow was the first person who didn’t make her feel like she had to choose between being a wolf or human. This is a really great underlying theme right here - you don’t have to be blood to be family.
In Storybrooke, Grumpy/Leroy manages to finally discover the fairy dust diamonds in the mines beneath the town, which means that they’ve finally got a way to get Jefferson’s magic hat to work again. But King George/Albert Spencer, who still isn’t over his grudge against Charming/David, concocts a rather complicated plan to make the people of Storybrooke turn against Charming/David. It involves framing Ruby, who is facing her first full moon transformation since the curse ended, for the death of Billy/Gus and getting the whole town out for her blood. But when Charming/David manages to prove that King George/Albert was the guilty party, King George/Albert retaliates by burning Jefferson’s hat, thus destroying that method of getting Emma and Mary Margret/Snow back to Storybrooke.
I have to ask, was there anyone else who rolled their eyes when that one person in the mob stated that they weren’t sheep when Charming/David came to Wolf Ruby’s defense? I hate to break it to you, Random Storybrooke Person, but…. yeah, you ARE sheep. Just look at how easily swayed you are into joining an angry mob. And by someone who had previously shown himself to be a nasty piece of work back in Pre-Curse Enchanted Forest. And this isn’t the first time the people of Storybrooke just turned on someone on a dime. Remember how quick everyone was to shun Mary Margret in season one during the whole affair debacle and following possible murder subplot, but then were instantly chummy again when Mary Margret’s name was cleared? Yeah, ‘not sheep,’ my eye.
While I was at first thinking it was rather mean of Ruby/Red to turn down Billy/Gus the Mouse’s date offer, I instantly forgave her when I realized her reasons for this was because she was just nervous about the upcoming full moon. It’s such a shame that Billy/Gus was killed off. It would have been interesting to see where that would go. Mind you, I’m someone who often wonders if there might have been something between Ruby and Graham, had he not been killed off, too. Yes, we never really saw them interacting during the first half of season one, but Graham clearly had an affiliation to wolves during his life as the Huntsman, and Ruby/Red is a werewolf. I don’t know, I sometimes think that could have been a good foundation for something, if Graham had survived to see the curse being broken. But obviously, we’ll never know for sure.
I really love seeing the friendship forming between Belle and Ruby/Red, which we saw beginning in ‘The Crocodile’. Like Snow did in the past, Belle doesn’t allow the fact that Ruby/Red is a werewolf to bother her in the slightest and refused to let fear keep her from helping her friend. Besides, after spending 28 years locked up in the psychiatric ward beneath the hospital without any human contact, I think Belle more than deserves the chance to find a group of friends for her to interact with. You know, other than Mr. Gold/Rumpelstiltskin.
We also get confirmation that Henry and Aurora’s dreams are much more than dreams, particularly after Henry wakes up with a burn on his hand. Gold/Rumpelstiltskin explains that those who fall prey to the sleeping curse have their souls slip into some sort of netherworld, and that sometimes, people who are woken up from this curse can sometimes astral project themselves back there. Thanks to a magic pendant Rumpelstiltskin/Gold gives him to control his trips to the netherworld, we’re shown that Henry can now communicate with Aurora. Meaning they can now swap messages between Storybrooke and the Enchanted Forest, setting things up for Ruby/Red’s words of encouragement to David/Charming to be fulfilled- they’ll find another way to get Emma and Mary Margret/Snow back