Review by Panda
I’m getting the need for the history of the new Neverland recruits, and I like that they have ties to the familiar Storybrooke crew, but I’m starting to notice that something is seriously lacking this season.
I wasn’t sure what that thing was at first. I liked the premiere. But last week, aside from boasting some nice development for Emma, was a little lackluster. This week I really put my finger on it; it lacks urgency. Even though everything is all about getting Henry back, that panic isn’t translating over into an exciting story on screen.
Some people are complaining that the stories we’re being shown have been told before. While I don’t disagree, I think there’s so many great character beats in those in-between times that we’re starting to see. This week we learned about Regina’s past with Tinkerbell and while we didn’t learn a lot about her that we didn’t already know, Regina’s state in those flashbacks is a stage of her transformation into the Evil Queen that was never really explored.
Her trust was shattered, and she had lost all motivation to love again. We saw her presented with the chance to find her true love and she chickened out. Not surprising, but now we’ve something for Regina to work towards again. I wasn’t surprised with who the mystery man with the tattoo was (I even guessed the circumstances of his reveal as well), but I like the idea of Regina having another shot at happiness that doesn’t revolve around Henry.
I was totally taken aback by Mulan’s true love. It was a good twist, though, and took the Aurora/Philip/Mulan triangle in a completely different direction than I initially thought it would go. It’s also nice to see that a family friendly show like this isn’t afraid to bring something unconventional to the table. I hope we get the chance to see Mulan in action again soon, because she just got a whole lot more interesting.
Tinkerbell’s story wasn’t as enthralling, and essentially retold Nova’s story from ‘Dreamy’. She’s clearly a must-have for any Neverland trip, but her presence didn’t really bring anything new. That aside, I do think the broken fairy we met is an interesting play on the well-known one everyone is familiar with.
Robin and Regina don’t exactly scream perfect match, but I’m excited to see how they’ll interact when the time comes.
I liked what Tinkerbell said about Regina not meeting her true love being selfish.
He Said, She Said
Tinkerbell: “Snow White – that’s her name? Even I think that’s a bit precious and mine’s Tinkerbell.”
Regina: “You said I can let go of the anger that was weighing me down and suddenly it felt like without it I would just…float away.”
All that development aside, there’s no big draw about season 3. The Neverland trip hasn’t been interesting since we first got here, and outside of the character plays the show is struggling to justify a reason for staying here for so long. I really hope we get out of this funk soon, because I’m starting to worry that Once is falling down a hole it won’t be able to climb its way out of if this goes on for much longer.
Previously posted at PandaTV