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Once Upon a Time “Enter the Dragon” 

Photo Credit: ABC/Jack Rowand
Photo Credit: ABC/Jack Rowand

This week they speak so much, yet say so little. The tidbits revealed about Regina and Maleficent’s background are very tantalizing, we see a young Regina take a major step forward, and at the same time watch Maleficent at her very worst.

Back in the Enchanted Forest a youthful Regina approaches Maleficent as an adoring fan, but instead of the magnificent sorceress she expects, she finds a broken-down drug addict barely surviving. Maleficent has been cut low by her failure with Briar Rose, and has lost her magical mojo. On her way home Regina hears that Briar Rose and Stefan have a daughter, and young Aurora is about to get married. She uses this knowledge as a means to shake Maleficent out of her lethargy and to rekindle her inner dragon. It seems to me that Maleficent owes Regina a debt of gratitude. It will be interesting to learn where it all went wrong.

Watching Regina flex her villain muscles in Storybrooke again is almost squirm-worthy. I don’t know quite how she did it, but I freely admit that she has managed to get me to root for her happy ending. Watching her old chums put her in harms way on a lark makes me worry not for her safety, but for her soul. These women have it in their power to reverse all her hard work over the past two seasons and send her spiraling back to her old ways. Let’s hope she can keep it together.

Photo Credit: ABC/Jack Rowand
Photo Credit: ABC/Jack Rowand

As soon as the word “dagger” passes through his lips, it’s clear that Killian is really Rumple in disguise. He manipulates Belle as effortlessly as spinning straw into gold. Oh, the heartache that could have been averted if only she had thought to change her wording! Her naiveté is once again her undoing, since Hook/Rumple clearly put the words into her mouth. If only she had listened more closely to that voice shouting Danger! All she had to do was compel the Dark One to reveal himself, rather than to face her.  Ah, but the “what if” game is a pointless exercise. She flubbed it. Now Rumple is back in control of his own destiny. It won’t be long before this puppet master is once again holding all the strings.

Poor Henry. Stuck in an endless loop of homework. A Storybook Möbius strip. Will he ever find the hidden clues? All signs point to ‘yes,’ but in the meantime the poor kid is stuck studying 24/7.

Moment of Goodness: …or is it Badness?

The final moments of the episode show Gold turning the sleeping Pinocchio back into adult August. This creates a cascade of questions, and will no doubt have far-reaching repercussions. Did Gold just strip August of his do-over? Has he ripped away this happy ending, and if so, is August doomed to suffer the sins of his past, or might he still have a chance at reclaiming his innocence? What’s more, with Regina playing a starring role in this caper, has she already doomed her own search for happiness in the eyes of The Author? This begs the greater question: are sins committed for the greater good still counted as sins? My hopes are still on Regina’s side, at least for now. One day we’ll see if The Author feels the same.

Once Upon A Time airs Sundays at 8/7c on ABC.

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