Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Once Upon a Time, Season 3, Episode 5: Good Form

Neal, captured again by the Lost Boys because he couldn’t deal with his daddy issues, is thrown into a cage. And one of the Lost boys pokes Henry with a stick, ominously talking about “what Pan has in store for you.” Henry picks up a stick to fight back and Pan has him channel his over-active imagination into creating real swords – which he then uses to cut the Lost Boy. Henry gasps an apology, it was an accident! And Pan tells him the utter best thing about being a Lost Boy is not having to apologise!

Y’know, I realise Henry is descended from Mary Margaret and David, so he’s probably not the brightest of stars (actually and Neal as well… damn kid doesn’t have a lot going for him) but you’d think “hey we’re all sociopaths!” would be a bad selling point.

Time to check in with our heroes (insert an immense amount of sarcasm on that line) and Emma notices the tally marks, counting off the days, in Neal’s cave. She notices where they stop and points to that being the point when Neal lost hope and counting days seemed pointless – she did the same thing in her foster homes. She’s worried about Henry losing hope. She wants to send Henry a sign (Regina snarks this as impossible without using her magic. Why isn’t she using her magic?).

Hook tries to find common cause with Emma and she shuts him down. David follows it up with a “give it up, you’re only a pirate.”

That sounds like time for a flashback! To when Hook was Lieutenant Jones on a ship in His Majesty’s Navy (which particular Majesty, I’m not entirely sure). His brother is the captain (nothing like a bit of Nepotism in the ranks) who gives his younger brother a sextant with strange markings because they’re off to a very strange land on a mission that will bring peace to the kingdom.

Back to the present and it seems the grand plan of Mary Margaret is to trap some Lost Boys and not, say, have Regina fry a few of them for funsies. Because REASONS. David decides to play the “keep away from my daughter” game with Hook – which is wrong on so many levels that I desperately hope Emma finds out and rips his balls off with a rusty metal hook.  Hook offers a possible way for David to save his life from poison, but David doesn’t want it – that would be a selfish distraction and there’s no damn way the plot is going to let him die so why bother? He also insults the idea that Hook can possibly understand the value of family (which, even with a  casual look at his back story to date, is ridiculous) and, again, to keep off his daughter! Hook points out that this whole vagina guard act is pretty pointless from a man who will be dead in a few days – and David tries to attack him and collapses instead. Hook catches him rather than let him face plant to the forest floor.

Hook inspects David’s wound and finds he only has hours left to live (can I have a big clock and a count down and people ready with fireworks and balloons? Maybe a big ball to drop? Pleaaaaase!?). David still doesn’t want to tell anyone because he’d rather they all make plans and he drop dead in the middle of executing them than actually give them knowledge they can work with. This foolishness is interrupted by David finding a military insignia with the name “Jones” on it – that once belonged to Hook’s brother. It washed down from the top of a mountain where Hook lost it in a duel with Pan. And if that insignia survived then maybe the special sextant did as well – which will let him decode Neal’s star map and get them all off Neverland.

David decides the absolute best thing to do with the last hours of his life is climb a mountain while barely able to stand with Hook so he can die at the top and Hook can return the sextant to Emma.

And people wonder why I don’t like this guy? Have you got the party food ready yet! Only hours left until his death! (Well, miraculous recovery. Who’s betting that during their mountain climb they coincidentally find the antidote to the poison seconds before he breathes his last?)

That calls for another flashback! Captain Jones shows Hook star charts for constellations he’s never seen before – they’re going to a new land! (Or their astronomer was very very very drunk) when some vaguely define enemy sails up – alas getting very close before being noticed somehow. To evade their enemies, Captain Jones orders them to raise (or possibly lower. I have no idea) another sail – one made from Pegasus feathers, this allows the ship to fly. For some reason the ships following them keep firing their cannon – it’s dramatic at least. They set course for Neverland

Neverland present and Emma and Regina are both suspicious and wondering why this is brand new information and not something Hook told them about 5 episodes ago. Also the womenfolk need to stay behind to give a message for Henry (uh-huh). David also gives Emma a completely super-awkward hug

That plan, by the way, means capturing a Lost Boy in a net and then giving him sweeties to give a message to Henry. (The Lost Boy ask if they want to start a war with Pan – I thought they already were in a war? And as such, can we make with the slaughtering of Lost boys already!) Emma also offers to get them all home which falls flat because the Lost Boys don’t WANT to go home – oh and Henry cut his face, not Pan so Pan’s not the monster (eerrr… Pan was the one who pushed him into it. There’s some serious David-level intelligence in these Lost Boys).

Hook and David walk through the jungle – well, Hook walks, David staggers painfully and tells Hook how he needs to lie to Emma and Mary Margaret about how he died so they can think him a hero; and Hook has to do this because he owes them for being a Bad Person. They then bond over the brothers they both lost (Hook is faintly nauseated by the possibility of 2 Davids when he learns David had a twin, amen Hook)

That calls for a flashback. They arrive at Neverland and Captain Jones tells Hook what they’re after – a plant that can cure any ailment. And Pan appears – he doesn’t accept the authority of any king (especially one so nebulously defined) and tells them that Dreamshade is the deadliest plant on the island that doesn’t heal anyone. If the king wants it, he must want it to slaughter his enemies. Hook is shocked by the possibility that the king wants to poison people rather than just shoot them with cannon but Captain Jones is sure that Pan must be lying.

To the present and Hook has climbed ahead of David to then haul the fool slowing him down back up after him. But first, Peter Pan appears to have a private word with Captain Hook. He wants Hook to work for him again (again? They’re even on first name terms) and in exchange he and Emma can leave the island (Pan thinks Emma will leave Henry because she did before); Pan admires Hook’s talent for “survival”. And as a seal of their deal, he wants to see Hook murder David (me too! I agree with Peter Pan on something!) and tries to get Hook back on the rum as a bonus.

Flashback: and Hook is wary about the Dreamshade – since using it could kill an entire race. Captain Jones angrily rejects any suggestion that the king is anything less than a wonderful, honourable amazing person and how very dare Hook do this thinking-thing. Hook says he will only fight his enemies fairly (with cannon and firearms, not poison. Apparently) and to prove how wonderful the king is, Captain Jones cuts himself on the Dreamshade. My, Hook was right, his older brother IS a lot like David.

Unsurprisingly, he collapses and dies. Darwin Award for that man!

Back with the women, the captured Lost Boy is bragging how Henry is a Lost Boy now and one of the most vicious new recruits they’ve had in ages (accidentally cut someone’s face then said sorry? Methinks he might be lying). Emma merrily throttles him and Mary Margaret stops her. I’m on the side of throttling, personally. Regina suggests ripping his heart out and using him as a meat puppet (I agree!) Mary Margaret tries to stop her – and Emma restrains her (apologising quietly to her mother) so Regina can get the job done. At last! Regina collects the heart, Mary Margaret starts blubbering.

Mary Margaret goes into full judgement mode – hoping there’s a difference between what Regina would do (anything to get her son back) and what Emma would do (anything to get her son back). Regina gives her new puppet half a mirror so they can see and talk to Henry.

Hook and David reach the top and David draws a sword on Hook, because he heard the deal Pan offered but Hook has a revelation – the sextant is not up the mountain and he deliberately dropped the insignia David found. It was the only way he could think of to convince David to come here – to the cure. David attacks him and Hook knocks him out

Damn it Hook, if someone’s too damn foolish to come in out of the rain, making elaborate plans to keep them dry is noble – but letting them get wet may be better – especially when that person is David and I have a party planned.

Flashback time and Hook is cradling his dead brother and asking Pan for help – and Pan shows him the spring, whose water keeps people young and heals even the gravely wounded. But it comes with a price. Hook takes the water then turns to Pan to pay the price after healing his brother – but Pan is gone.

They plan to return home and expose the king as a dishonourable coward using bad form with unholy weapons. They arrive at land (I love the way one look out tells them to brace for landing then the other says “land ho”. The lookouts on this ship are shockingly awful). But on reaching land, his brother dies.

Back at the Lost Boy’s camp, Henry draws happy house pictures in the mud and Regina’s meat puppet goes to him to deliver the message – and show him the mirror with Emma, Regina and Mary Margaret assuring him they’re going to rescue him and that they’re in Neverland.

Up on the mountain, Hook gets the healing water for David (noooooo) and David realises Hook has tricked him to save his life because he was too much of a damn fool to save his own life. The downside is that because the water gets its power from the Island, he can never leave Neverland. The choice is “die now” or “live longer and be stranded/die later”. Even David can figure that one out – he drinks the water and is healed (damn, cancel the party). David asks Hook why he saved his life – and Hook says he didn’t do it for David.

Later Mary Margaret is angsty about what Emma did and Regina steps in – Emma didn’t do anything, she did. That’s what she’s there for. They’re reunited with the men (and Regina calling a fireball when threatened is way more impressive than Snow’s bow or Emma’s sword – and they’re one cleric away from a decent DnD group). Hook claims the sextant was taken by Pan (you’re not going to tell the truth? Why?) while David and Mary Margaret make out and Emma gets faintly nauseous  and Regina wishes she had another sleeping curse (me too!) David makes up a story about Hook saving him and risking his life in the process

Are they just lying for funsies at this point?

Emma and Hook have a moment, she thanks him and he angles for a kiss. They taunt and flirt for a but before she kisses him (possibly to prove that he couldn’t handle it). It’s a quite involved kiss and when it breaks off Emma says it was a one time thing

Flashback! Hook buries his brother and becomes the new captain. He burns the Pegasus sail so no-one can ever sail back to Neverland and retrieve the poison. He refuses to serve the king any more, but they will sail as freemen – and swears vengeance on the king, his corruption and his immortality, that he will take everything from the kingdom. They are now pirates, sailing the Jolly Roger

The crew are surprisingly ok with this

Back in Neverland, Pan is not happy with Hook – and tells him that Neal is still alive.

The Lost Boys imprison Neal next to another cell – someone else is imprisoned by them as well.

David playing vagina guard to Emma? No. No. No and hell no. Even in a conventional father/daughter relationship that’s a creepy amount of ownership and disrespect for the woman, especially for an adult daughter. But between David and Emma, the same age, the same amount of experience and him having less than a year of even knowing he was her father? AND after Emma has already told both him and Mary Margaret off for playing parent?

Why would a king whose technology has extended to firearms and cannons really seek out a plant that’s really poisonous? It’s not like poison is hard to come by – or that it’s really necessary to throw envenomed cannon balls at one’s enemies.

I’m so glad that they’re letting rip with Regina. How did they actually expect to take on the Lost Boys and save Henry if they were going to wander around worrying about hurting them? This is the whole thing about Mary Margaret that gets on my last nerve – they’ve made her this font of purity who couldn’t face killing Cora in self-defence and now objects to using actual force against the Lost Boys – but in her backstory she and David led actual armies against King George and Regina. Armies that went to war. She herself fought during that war.  What did those armies do – competitive tiddlywinks?!  She engaged in armed robbery. She fought and killed bandits. She carried a bow and arrow – what are those arrows? Magically enchanted to tickle?

Is this a desperate retconning of her character? Or is killing on pure when she says so?

Also if we’re going to have Regina be the one who does evil so the White ladies can stay pure can we, at very least, ensure that there is no judging of Regina for said evil?