Once Upon a Time Season 4 Episode 5 – TV Review
Well, I was wrong about the Snow Queen being Emma’s mum.
But she was Emma’s foster mum.
That’s got to count for something, right?
TL;DR Regina reluctantly teams up with Emma to seek out Snow Queen; Snow Queen gets away, but not before making some point to Elsa about overcoming her fear; Emma is determined to win Regina’s friendship; Will escapes jail; flashbacks show Emma’s youth, when she made a new friend who turned out to be a fraud.
And Emma’s pain over the failure of that friendship is what’s motivating her to pursue Regina. Subtle, right?
The main plot of this episode follows Emma, Regina, and Elsa as they try to track down the Snow Queen. Regina uses Sidney to find her, in the hope of finding a cure for Marian; Elsa chases after her for answers; and Emma wants to find Elsa. Elsa gets there first, and Snow Queen ties her up and has some spiel about how Elsa needs to embrace her fear or whatever. Regina and Emma soon catch up, and they put their magic together to defeat an ice golem warrior thing that Snow Queen sets upon them. Elsa then comes and bitch slaps Snow Queen, which seems to make Snow Queen happy. She gets away, but not before stealing Regina’s compact mirror, which she’d been carrying around with Sidney in. Sidney, as it turns out, betrayed Regina beause Snow Queen had promised him freedom. Which she delivers. And apparently Regina’s compact mirror was needed to complete some other mirror Snow Queen is working on. Meanwhile, Snow and David try to have a date away from the baby. They discover Will has escaped his cell, and their night is spoiled because they have to search for him. Snow finds him, but then realises the whole thing was a set up from David to give Snow a little adventure in her life. She gives Will a mayoral pardon, only to find out that David isn’t that clever or thoughtful, and she’d been duped. Oh well. And flashbacks take us to 1998 as Emma is on the run from child services. She makes friends with a fellow runaway named Lily, only to discover later that Lily isn’t an escapee from the foster system, but is just a spoiled, suburban brat. Emma is not amused.
She is also an inept shoplifter. It’s reassuring to know she was always inept at every profession she chose.
While I appreciate the episode’s focus of Emma trying to endear herself to Regina to rebuild their friendship, bringing it up reminds me just how much Regina fell apart because Marian came to town.
Regina is so much more than just a woman wanting a man. I don’t like that she is so aggrieved because Robin’s wife showed up.
I mean, bitch, you already know he’s still in love with you. Relax.
Why I hate this episode:
I can’t even properly enjoy Regina’s constant bashing of Emma this episode because I know it’s motivated by her wittle bitty broken heart. It’s tainted.
Snow and David’s subplot is boring and unimportant. Much like Snow and David themselves.
I’m getting tired of waiting to know why Will is back in town. I know only me and about five other people actually watched Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, but I would very much like to know why Will is here instead of enjoying his happy ending with Red.
Snow Queen flip flops on what exactly she wants from Elsa fear-wise. When she chains her up, she’s all “I want you to be scared bwa ha ha ha.” Then when Elsa cunt punts her and shows she ain’t scared none, hon, Snow Queen is all “I want you to be fearless bwa ha ha ha.” Just shut up and get to the point.
Sadly, the point appears to be some schmaltzy rubbish about how all the Snow Queen wants is a family who loves her. Oh, cry me a glacier, bitch. I’m actually starting to miss Pan. At least he was a selfish, power-hungry turd to the core. I’m tired of this “I just want to be loved” drama. We’ve already done that. Regina, anyone?
The Emma flashbacks waste an amazing amount of screentime, and the final take-away, being that Emma regrets giving up on her friendship with Lily, is ridiculous. They only knew each other for, like, 2 hours. And Lily lied her arse off to Emma. Why on earth would Emma feel guilty about leaving that little shit behind?
Sidney grows a backbone out of nowhere. Just because, I guess.
Oh, and Snow “catches” Will when she sees him digging out in the open. Literally seconds before she sees him, David is still with her. What, he didn’t see and hear the guy loudly digging a few metres away? What the fuck?
But it’s not all bad:
I’ll relish whatever Emma bashing I can get. Even if it’s unjustified.
Regina gets herself the second best line of the episode for this hyperbolic scratch at Emma: “Miss Swan, one thing is abundantly clear: you’ve never had my back. And you never will.” Look, I’m the first person to (gleefully) be hard on Emma, but that’s not true, Regina. And you know it. But still, the bitch factor is admirable.
The best line of the episode is a bit more palatable, and it’s a team effort:
Emma: “I’m an idiot.”
Regina: “Finally, something we can agree on.”
The one thing they can do well together is simul-blast a snow golem with their magic. I like to think of it as them fighting back against the snow golem’s CGI.
For good or bad, we learn more about Snow Queen’s goals. I’ll leave aside the “me want family” stuff for the moment, because her big mirror is fabulous. It’s all fractured and ugly, then she breaks Regina’s compact (which is imbued with dark magic from Regina), and adds it to the big one. The fractures disappear and it becomes whole again. But how will you lodge it in people’s hearts and eyes now, honey?
Snow Queen also proves herself somewhat honourable and holds up her end of the deal with Sidney by letting him out of the mirror, and letting him go.
And the one actually relevant part of the Emma flashbacks becomes apparent at the end of the episode. Lily and Emma found a video camera in a house they broke into which they played around with. Emma and Hook are going through a box of Emma’s childhood memories, and they find the video camera and play it for old time’s sake. But after the clip of Emma and Lily, we cut to a new scene of Emma’s next foster home she was sent to. Which she can’t remember. And Snow Queen herself is the foster mum. What a charitable soul.
Will doesn’t say what he’s in Storybrooke for, but he does unsuccessfully search for a bag he’d buried. So I suppose when he finds that, we’ll learn more. Hop to it, then.
His duping of Snow is both predictable (because Snow is a fucking dumbass) and delicious. I enjoyed it.
A stash of photos from Regina’s office show that Sidney took a photo of Emma talking to Snow Queen (as the ice-cream parlour woman) in Storybrooke back in the day.
David isn’t that bothered that Snow pardoned Will. All he did was trespass into a library, after all. Nice to see some level-headedness.
Oh, and Regina spends much of the episode admonishing Emma for not putting enough effort into practicing her magic. It shows.