Sunday, March 23, 2014

Once Upon a Time 3.14: "The Tower"

“There’s a difference between fear and strategy. We know she’s got flying monstrosities. Who knows what she’s got down there?”
- Hook

I have to admit I was very confused at first when this episode started. And it seems I’m not the only one. David is wandering around the castle and ends up in Emma’s nursery but it shouldn’t be all clean and put together like it is. And then Emma shows up in a ball gown, saying she needs practice before the ball and she wants him to teach her how to dance. We get a nice scene of daddy and daughter dancing but then things take a turn for the creepy. She accuses him of failing her (there’s a creepy doll head spinning on a shelf) and then she gets sucked through a portal yelling that he can’t fail the next one. David wakes and we realize it was a dream. But maybe more like a premonition since Snow announces she’s pregnant.

In Storybrooke, the Charming/Mills clan plus Hook are trying to figure out how to find the Wicked Witch. They all agree Henry needs to be kept safe and Regina takes protection duty. Elsewhere, Zelena mays Rumple another visit and finds him spinning madly and chanting. He really has lost his mind. She has his dagger so she’s in control and she gives him a shave to keep up appearances and we get a little info on her drunken father. So those positing that Rumple is actually her father would be wrong (if we can trust her). Zelena wants something that Rumple has (or had) and that goes against his very nature. We next find her at the pawn shop which Belle seems to have taken over claiming she wants to buy a baby gift for Mary Margaret. But as Belle heads off, Zelena freezes her and busts into the wall safe to grab a magical plant. This is not a good thing and I get the feeling she wants to steal the Snowing baby.

David, Emma and Hook are checking Regina’s office for non-magical clues and David finds some holly berries on the floor and knows exactly where they grow in the woods. One assumes this will ultimately lead them to Rumple. Or at least where Zelena was keeping him. Unfortunately, David won’t be going on that little trek because Mary Margaret wants him home to meet with Zelena. He’s reluctant to leave but Emma urges him on. It seems there’s something afoot with Zelena and her intentions towards the prince. She puts some of that root she stole from the pawn shop in his tea.

Back in the Enchanted Forest, Robin happens upon David taking a secret sip from a flask hidden in the stables. They have a nice bonding moment where David admits that he had no problem believing that putting Emma in the wardrobe and sending her off was the right thing to do. But now he’s terrified of this second baby. Robin tells him of some root that grows in Sherwood Forest that quells fears and David heads off, despite the warning of it being haunted. This just reinforces that there is something special about this baby. David finds the root he’s looking for but before he can do much, he hears a woman calling for help. The calls lead him to a tower which he climbs without much hesitation to find a young woman with really long hair trapped at the top. Yep, we’re getting Rapunzel, folks. And in true Once fashion, she’s not the princess we know. For one thing she’s African American. Thank you for some diversity without them being evil. We get a little history on Rapunzel. Her parents are great rulers and she knew she wasn’t cut out for the task. When her older brother died, she was overcome by fear and sought out the same root as David. It didn’t work and now she’s trapped in the tower by a witch who is on her way up the tower as they’re talking. The effects this week are very jarring which I guess makes sense. Rapunzel insists that there’s nothing David can do but he says he’s going to save her. And then promptly gets his ass kicked by the witch.

David arrives home and Zelena makes them all some tea, slipping something into David’s drink. As they talk, it becomes pretty clear she’s dosed him with the root he was looking for in the Enchanted Forest. He’s now fearless. Not good! And he heads off to the woods to meet up with Emma and Hook (sword in hand) and we see the witch in the side mirror of his truck. Because that’s not creepy. Emma and Hook are getting closer to finding Zelena’s hide out (a farm house…the irony is not lost on Emma) but we get some banter between them that kind of made this Swanthief fan cringe. He thinks he saved Emma from a loveless marriage and is glad that Emma got her heart broken by Walsh because it means her heart still works (aka he’s still got a shot of getting in her pants). David gets to the woods and thinks he’s found the Wicked Witch but he’s wrong. And also gets his ass kicked by the hooded witch.

Elsewhere in Storybrooke, Regina and Henry have a really touching conversation. Henry thinks that Emma turned Walsh down and she ran away from New York to get away for a while. He’s disappointed because he liked how happy Walsh made her and he was hoping for more than just the two of them at holidays. Regina assures him that one day, he’ll have more family than he’ll know what to do with. And also says that the best part of a small town is that everyone is like a big family. Or you know, in this case, an actual family. Seriously, everyone is related in this town!

Emma and Hook venture to the farm house and snoop around but before they can go into the storm cellar, Hook suggests they get some magical back up. Seeing as Emma’s powers are a bit rusty from non-use the past year, they call Regina for an assist. And the most interesting part of this whole storyline, we figure out that the witch isn’t a witch but the person’s fears personified as themselves. David admits that he is afraid of being a bad father to this new baby and it’s enough to overcome his demons. And in the Enchanted Forest, Rapunzel cuts her hair and gets rid of her fear. She’s reunited with her family and David admits to Snow that he’s scared of not being a good father. In Storybrooke, David explains what happened and Regina warns that since his sword hilt disappeared, it’s a totem of his courage and that can be very dangerous and powerful. Of course it is! So now we have to worry about Zelena stealing people’s brains and heart too! Here’s hoping we can at least get some info on the cellar. Not surprising, Rumple’s gone but they realize he’s back. I cannot wait to see what havoc comes home to Storybrooke now that he’s loose again!

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