Once Upon a Time Season 4 Episode 17 – TV Review

OUaT Best Laid Plans Emma crying

Hey, at least they didn’t kill it.

But boo, can you imagine if they’d killed it? That would have been pretty cool.

I suppose we’ll have to settle for “banished to another realm.”

I should have known. It’s pretty standard for Once Upon a Time at this point.

TL;DR Flashback Snow and Charming go after Maleficent’s child and (somewhat unintentionally) banish it to our world; present day Snow and David confess the truth to a disgusted Emma; Regina fails in her double agent role; the Author is released from the storybook page.

But he’s a slippery little sucker.

With Gold and the Bad Girls Club closing in on the Author mystery, our heroes do their best to bring Operation Mongoose to completion. Henry ends up finding the key needed to open the door on the page, but David and Snow snatch it away in an effort to save Emma from possible darkness (if they destroy the page, then the plan to corrupt her to change the happy endings can’t be enacted. Because Gold needs the Author for that). They eventually decide to come clean to Emma about their interference with Maleficent’s baby, instead, and Emma angrily unlocks the door. The Author pops out (and August informs us that the “Author” is merely just a job title. They’re supposed to record history, but this one went off-script and started altering events, thus the Sorcerer had the Apprentice trap him inside the book), and promptly flees from our heroes. Meanwhile, Regina keeps up her shabby ruse to trick Gold and the gals, but Gold gets fed up with her and prepares to force her to help him somehow. And in flashback, we see Snow and Charming go to nefarious lengths to keep their baby’s chances of being evil at a zero. The Apprentice offers them a spell to transfer her potential for evil to another child, so they abduct Maleficent’s dragon egg. An unfortunate side clause of the spell that the Apprentice didn’t tell them about was that the egg will be sucked into another realm. Ursula and Cruella fall into the portal, too, which explains how they ended up in our world.

And the baby was adopted and named “Lily,” which is the same name of Emma’s hoodlum friend from back in the day (who is also conveniently mentioned by Emma this episode. Just so we can keep up).

Will my infanticide cravings ever be sated?

You can’t tease me like that, Once Upon a Time.

Oh, well. Snow and Charming’s horrible, horrible actions still warm my heart. They really are terrible heroes. And not merely terrible characters, which they always had locked down.


Why I hate this episode:

During the spell, the egg starts to crack open and a human-looking baby arm is visible. Snow is like “Oh em gee, there’s a baby in there! Zoinks!” Bitch, you knew it was a baby before. But now that you can see it’s a humanoid baby it’s suddenly an atrocity to sacrifice it? Fuck you.

Then to end the flashbacks, Snow is weighed down by the guilt of the evil they’ve committed. So Charming just pep talks her and says they need to promise to be better heroes in pursuit of offsetting their crime. Or you could have just not abducted Maleficent’s baby in the first place?

Their rationalisation for abducting and transferring darkness into Maleficent’s baby is “it’s probs gonna be evil anyway lolz.” Fuck. You.

Once Upon a Time is apparently following in Pretty Little Liars’ frustrating footsteps of bringing back one-shot characters from ages ago to suddenly become important. Hi, Lily. Maybe they’ll actually make her mean something, though. PLL never seemed to really get the hang of that part.

Maleficent puts up a pretty poor fight in stopping Snow and Charming from taking her egg. I can see why she didn’t just fry them with dragon breath, but when she reverts to human form, she just stands around like an idiot and begs them not to do it. Weak.

August says one of the past Authors’ names was “Walt.” Oh, Disney. Do try to control yourselves. Jesus.

Why have Snow and David been so worried about Emma turning evil? The Apprentice specifically says that his spell on the babies is irreversible. Even if Gold managed to pull the Author out of the storybook, he wouldn’t be able to do shit to Emma. She is eternally without her darkness because they offloaded it on Maleficent’s baby. What’s the big deal, then?

Hook is jealous of August. Because out of all the things we needed in this show, Emma’s love interests being jealous of each other was the top priority.

Oh, and given that the Apprentice rages at the Author for forcing him to perform the spell on the babies, I see we now have a perfect scapegoat for Snow and David to blame their abhorrent behaviour on. “Bu-bu-but the book made us. We wouldn’t really intentionally hurt a baby.” Fuck off.


But it’s not all bad:

At least we’ve found the Author, so I think we can rate Operation Mongoose as a success. I’m hoping he’ll get his hands on a blank storybook and a pen and start fucking shit up in Storybrooke. Wouldn’t that be exciting?

Speaking of fucking shit up in Storybrooke, Gold has Maleficent knock Regina out, then vaguely says that he has a way to force her to do his bidding. I wouldn’t mind a reprise of Evil Regina. She was fun earlier in the season.

I enjoy watching Snow and Charming/David do terrible things. Because it affirms my disdain of them. And there are few things as terrible as stealing an expectant mother’s baby out from under her. Literally.

And knowingly filling that baby with evil.

And unknowingly getting it flung off to some other realm, thereby breaking your promise to return it. You two are serious arseholes. Which is what we’ve always known you were.

Present day David even dupes Henry into handing over the door page and the key so he can destroy them. Snow stops him, but by God, David. You truly are unconscionable. And remember, as per the outline of the spell, Emma isn’t actually in any danger. David’s just being overly careful. Jerk.

Snow stops him from burning the page and they resolve to come clean to Emma about all their baby-meddling ways. Emma, appropriately, is goddamn horrified. Good.

Cruella gets best line this episode when she, Gold, and Maleficent are contemplating Regina’s unconscious body: “Well I say we just slit her throat right now. Get it over with.” I don’t condone the attempted Regina murder, but I do condone the pragmatism.

Maleficent puts Storybrooke to sleep (except David, Snow, and Henry. Who are immune due to their previous afflictions with the sleeping curse), which Gold uses as a chance to have a tender moment with Belle. His words and motions imply that he’s dying or something. Juicy.

Snow and Charming touch a unicorn horn to glimpse their child’s future. Charming sees a beautiful, innocuous vision of a baby. Snow, however, gets a vision of a grumpy teen Emma who rips her heart out and crushes it. Why couldn’t it be real?

Snow mentions a couple of times how torn she is about destroying the door page, because it would mean Regina won’t get her happy ending. Aww, nice try, honey. But you’ll have to be better than that to win me over.

Oh, and it’s kind of hilarious watching a baby inside a dragon egg getting sucked into a hell vortex. Mainly because Snow and David are the ones who made it happen. You guys are the worst.

OUaT Best Laid Plans dragon egg baby

Mostly just a lot of shrieking from blonde-haired idiots.

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About ijusthateeverything

Sincerity is death.

8 responses to “Once Upon a Time Season 4 Episode 17 – TV Review”

  1. Teylen says :

    I really like the authors attitude,….
    …, they hope to find a nice benevolent author who is cool and friendly to all his character but then they released their own George R.R. Martin – ehehehe

    It might be an easy way out that he actually made the apprentice banish the Maleficient kids to another realm but I like his “it makes for a better story” attitude ^^

    Plus I found it somewhat hilarious that snows heart wasn’t pure before she murdered Reginas mother ^^

  2. Amadan says :

    Fucking Snow and David are the worst people in both worlds.
    I mean, they have been told their child has great potential as good or bad, much like any baby in the world. But no, they don’t even think “well let’s rise this baby to be good” they just go screw up someone else’s baby.
    I know that i always side with the villains everytime, but i was heartbroken for maleficent when she starts to beg them.
    also fucking double standards, since Snow and David did it, they are still tormented heroes, can you imagine if Maleficent would have done it?

    Anyway, that should have been the darkest secret to confess in the Echo whatever back in neverland not that stupid “I want to be a mum again” dark secrets my ass

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