Sunday, February 17, 2013

'Once Upon a Time' Review - 2.14 Manhattan

        On the newest episode of ABC's Once Upon a Time, Mr. Gold, Emma and Henry go in search of Gold's son, Bae, in New York; Cora, Regina and Hook attempt to track down one of Rumplestiltskin's most treasured possessions; and, in the fairytale land that was, Rumplestiltskin realizes his destiny while fighting in the Orges War.

        For a long time throughout this second season, it has been highly speculated that Mr. Gold's son and Henry's father were the same person. That reveal seems to make the most amount of sense going into this hour because of how the story forced all of this people together on this journey. And yet, while that reveal was inevitable and predictable, the fallout conversely, allowed Once Upon a Time to have its strongest outing of the second season so far. The bringing of all of these characters together allowed for some truly honest and open conversations amongst them all - and when the series is able to hit those emotional moments successful it really shines. Emma was forced to deal with Henry's father being Bae and thusly and rightly questioned how real their relationship was, in the first place. Their backstory episode in the fall was not one of my favorite's because it lacked the emotional excitement. But now, the reintroduction of both in their lives should allow for great further conversations and obstacles - especially when you throw Henry and Gold into the mix. And then, there was Gold's speech to try and win back his son. He showed that he has changed and yet he really hasn't. Gold wants to be a better person for his son and that has been his primary motivation for his entire journey here. But in that moment, he painfully is still just a coward who thinks he needs magic in order to please the people he holds closest to his heart. He thought magic could save Belle and her memory and he thought magic could reunited him with Bae. In both instances, he failed and thusly his devastation is palpable and we yearn for him to be happy.
        The flashbacks of Rumplestiltskin's past life have always been the most well-done and that trend continues here and is very much keeping in line with the main plot's ability to transform predictable plotting into exciting and emotional reveals. We knew going into the hour that Rumple and Milah would grow distint and that he would prove to be a coward and yet the individual actions were very powerful and moving. He allowed the Seer to get inside his head and yet there is nothing that he could have done to change the future. This should prove to be an interesting theory moving forward as it too will impact the main characters like Emma and Henry. The tease of Henry being his demise is a juicy point to end on here and I can't wait to see how this story moves forward to that conclusion.
        The additional storyline with Regina, Cora and Hook was perhaps a bit too superfluous and introductory compared to the rest of the hour. Regina has once again fallen into an all-evil role just this time working alongside her mother. The prospects of the story of the search for Rumple's dagger are ripe with future conflict and a decent setup for the growing fight between "good" and "evil." We shall see where things go from here.

So what did everyone think of the episode? Why didn't the townspeople have someone watching over Hook at all times? How funny was David's line about Thanksgiving? Was this the season highlight for you? Share your thoughts in the comments.