Monday, September 14, 2015

Once Upon a Time Episode Analysis (Shattered Sight)

You know, as much hype as the Curse of Shattered Sight was getting, I didn’t get the impression that people were actually ripping people apart.  At least not literally.  There was just a lot of verbal fighting.  Sure, the words traded were harsh and vicious, but still, it’s not quite as bad as I was led to believe.  (And how exactly was Regina unable to unseal herself out of the vault?  You know, since she was the one who sealed herself in.)  Anna, who is among the handful of people who are immune to the curse, remembers an old Arendelle fable about an ancient king that first created the Curse of Shattered Sight, out of grief over his beloved daughter’s untimely death.  According to the fable, the curse could only be broken by the death of the person who cast the curse.  Which means the only way to save Storybrooke was to kill Ingrid.  While Elsa is reluctant to even consider that option, Emma, thinking of the big picture, is willing to do whatever is necessary to save the town.  But because of the yellow ribbons Ingrid placed on their wrists, Emma and Elsa cannot use their magic against Ingrid.  No matter what they try to remove the ribbons (and exactly how much do you think Gold is going to charge you for that ram horn you broke, Emma?), they simply cannot come off, because they’re protectively sealed through sisterly love.  But then, Emma gets a brilliant idea.  If the yellow ribbons are being maintained by a ‘love without measure,’ perhaps they can be destroyed by an equally strong hatred.  So, it’s off to Regina’s vault they go, where Emma and Elsa goad Regina, who is now full-on Evil Queen again, into firing a magical blast at them, which results in the yellow ribbons to vanish from Emma and Elsa’s wrists.  With the ribbons gone, their magic is back in full force.  Which begs the question of why they didn’t reseal Regina’s vault before racing off.  Because they didn’t, Regina was free to head right for the Sheriff Station, where Snow and Charming were still under lock and key.  After magically teleporting Anna and Kristoff out to the beach, Regina decides the best way to punish Snow and Charming for all the ways they’ve wronged her was by taking Baby Neal from them.  Obviously, this resulted in Snow going into full Mama Bear mode, and the two women get into an all-out brawl.  And I gotta say, Baby Neal is an INCREDIBLY sound sleeper.  Regina and Snow are really going at it, shouting as loud as they can and crashing into things.  At one point, Regina is even pushed right through a pane of glass.  And yet, even with all this commotion, Baby Neal is not even stirring.

Meanwhile, on the beach, Anna, by sheer chance, stumbles across the message in the bottle that her parents wrote before their ship went down in the storm years ago.  The contents of the letter excite Anna so much, she immediately runs off to where Elsa and Emma are facing off against Ingrid.  The letter stated Gerta deeply regretted how things ended between her and Ingrid, and how much she wished she could go back and do things differently because she’d loved her sister all along.  The contents of the letter finally force Ingrid to see the error of her ways, and she decides to end her life in order to put an end to the Curse of Shattered Sight, which allows her to rejoin her sisters, Helga and Gerta, in the afterlife.   So, the curse is now broken , and everyone is instantly all smiles again.  In fact, everyone seems to have lasted the night completely unscathed.  Was there any bloodshed at all?  I thought the curse was supposed to force everyone to kill each other.  But with the exception of Snow and Regina, and a brief comedic moment between Grumpy and Happy, it just seemed to be a lot of verbal fighting.  But if anyone did die, it was probably one of those nameless people in the background that no one really seems to care about.  Still would like some acknowledgement of that.  Even The Vampire Diaries, which I gave up on for various reasons, made an effort to say 'oh, yeah!  A bunch of background high school students died.  We should hold a memorial service for them.'

I admit, while I am really glad Ingrid redeemed herself in the end, I’m not really torn up over her death.  Maybe it’s simply because I didn’t feel like there was any other way to wrap up her story without it feeling like a cop out.

We do get a briefly comedic moment when Killian, while trying to abduct Henry on Gold's orders (and getting 'Home Aloned' in the process), runs into Will again.  The latter tries to initiate a rematch with Killian, referencing the black eye Killian gave him in 'The Apprentice.'  Of course, the 'rematch' ends almost as soon as it could begin, with Killian simply stepping out of the way and using Will's momentum to shove him into the nearby wall, effectively knocking him out instantly.  Which was both hilarious and pathetic at the same time.

Wasn’t a lot to the flashback in this episode, but it does cover Emma’s forgotten past history with Ingrid, with how she was Emma’s foster mother at one point.  And you could tell Emma was really happy living with Ingrid.  That is, until their falling out.  Basically, Ingrid got a little too gung-ho about Emma and her currently dormant magical powers, which, despite them being in the Land Without Magic, seemed to be manifesting themselves in subtle ways, like the scene with the claw machine.  To try and encourage more bursts of magic from her, Ingrid purposely placed Emma into a life-threatening situation, which was INCREDIBLY stupid on her part, especially since Ingrid had already seen her magic didn’t work so good in the Land Without Magic.  As one would expect, this particular incident drove Emma into running away again, which I don’t blame her for at all.  Of course, Ingrid didn’t  toknow when quit, so she used the scroll from the Sorcerer to locate Storybrooke.  Now, that one moment did bring about an interesting reveal.  I’ve gone into great detail over my confusion over how no outsider seemed to stumble across Storybrooke when the curse was in effect.  But from how the scene played out, it seemed Storybrooke wasn’t visible to Ingrid until she read the scroll from the town center.  I guess that answers my question.  Anyone driving through the town just wouldn’t see it.  Thank you, show writers, for finally clearing that up for me.  Of course, when Emma arrived in Storybrooke, the inevitable confrontation happened when Emma ducks into Ingrid’s ice cream shop to get something for Henry.  Needless to say, Emma was not the least bit happy to see Ingrid, who, to avoid a scene, removed all of Emma’s memories of Ingrid with some Rock Troll magic, the same way she made Elsa forget what happened before getting trapped in the Urn.  Of course, Ingrid does return those memories before sacrificing her life.

The episode ends with Gold kinda miffed that Ingrid’s curse came to an end, so he can’t take advantage of the chaos to slip away.  But that doesn’t change his plan to cleave himself from the dagger and leave Storybrooke with his magic intact.  A plan he intends to enact that very night.

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