As always, this episode leaves us with more questions than answers. Much of the hour was spent setting the scene for next week, so we can hope that answers are on the horizon. There were some significant flaws this week, with luck they will be explained or corrected very soon. I have faith in the writers to find clever ways to tie all these disparate strings of fact, history, and story together before seasonâ€™s end. Hopefully that faith isnâ€™t misplaced.
Letâ€™s explore some of the events of the day. Itâ€™s no surprise that Emma finds Lily, and mostly by accident as it turns out. But letâ€™s set them aside for a moment since theyâ€™re such a broad topic, and discuss the other characters first.
I find it incredibly interesting that Rumplestiltskin is willing to return Belleâ€™s heart to her and then leave her to Will Scarlet. This goes against every fiber of his selfish being. He could have kept her heart and forced her to leave Will, but instead he shows a rare moment of honesty. Or does he? Could this all be a ploy to trick Belle into believing he has turned over a new leaf? Time will tell.
With Regina in a front row seat, Zelena finally reveals her deception to Robin Hood. Even though he knows he has stayed with her under false pretenses, he wonâ€™t leave her now because she is pregnant. Isnâ€™t this a pickle? Although itâ€™s impossible to guess whatâ€™s coming for this relationship, there are a number of thoughts that cross my mind. First of all, is she really pregnant? It would appear so, since she told Regina over the phone that she â€œhas a meatloaf in the oven,â€ which could be taken as innuendo. If she is pregnant, is the child actually Robin Hoodâ€™s? She told Rumple earlier that she hasnâ€™t succeeded in winning Robinâ€™s heart. What are the chances that she found pleasure elsewhere? And finally, we still havenâ€™t seen what happened to the six-leaf clover charm that Robin stole from Zelena in Oz. Itâ€™s the same charm sheâ€™s been using to appear to be Marion, which makes me wonder if Robin is really Robin? Thereâ€™s potential there for a â€œwhat ifâ€¦â€ storyline.
Itâ€™s nice to see Snow and Charming take the first step towards reconciliation with Maleficent. Their actions were unforgivable, but at least they recognize the need for an apology. Finally. My hope is that their honest expression of remorse will ultimately prove to be the cure for Emmaâ€™s descent into darkness. Forgiveness is a powerful force for good, and if Emma can find it within her, it could be her path to avoid, or perhaps recover from, Rumpleâ€™s plans for her.
Okay, back to the relationship between Emma and Lily. As the story progresses, weâ€™re starting to see proof that the spell that was cast to funnel Emmaâ€™s darkness into Lily was a one-time, and one-way event. Lily received Emmaâ€™s potential darkness, but Emma did not receive Lilyâ€™s potential light. If she had, then logic dictates that the decisions Emma made as a child would have worked for good, and she never would have ended up in prison. This bodes well for next week, when Lily arrives in Storybrooke. If there is a spark of light within her, there remains the potential for reconciliation, not just revenge. As weâ€™ve seen before, in Emmaâ€™s world a tiny spark of hope is all it takes. We can see that it was one-time because Emmaâ€™s anger wasnâ€™t leeched off to Lily during their fight. Speaking of which, does Lily have magic in the real world? The thunderclap seems to say yes. She will be very powerful indeed when she gets to Storybrooke.
Rumple believes that Lily is the key to Emmaâ€™s darkness, but itâ€™s not clear how this will come about. Would Emma need to kill Lily? Would Lilyâ€™s death return the potential darkness to Emma? What is worse, Lily dead, or Lily in Storybrooke with her magic unleashed? One more week and weâ€™ll know.
The necklace is an interesting element, I hope more is explained about it. There is no word on how Lily came to have it, or how she knows itâ€™s from her mother. Was it inside her egg? The Apprentice says itâ€™s not exactly a stone, I wonder if it will be revealed to be a dragonâ€™s talon. That would make a powerful talisman, donâ€™t you think? Speaking of which, the star and the moon have traditionally been symbols of the Sorcerer himself. Might he turn out to be Lilyâ€™s father? That would make for an interesting twist.
Moment of Goodness: Role reversal
â€œEmma, youâ€™re better than this.â€ The best moment in the episode, Regina talks Emma out of killing Lily. The complete reversal of their characters is brilliant, particularly when Regina has been showing glimpses of her old evil ways for weeks now. Regina is uniquely entwined with both Emma and Maleficent. It will be fun to watch her caught between the two families as the season wraps up.
Once Upon a Time airs Sundays at 8/7c on ABC.
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