Once Upon a Time Season 7 Episode 12 – TV Review
And it’s not the first time I’ve said it, either.
Step aside, Cinderella. Tiana’s the hero we need.
TL;DR Flashbacks show Tiana encountering her love interest prince, and clashing again with her villain; both dudes reappear in the present, with Doctor Facilier awake to the curse and manipulating the beau; he’s also awake to Regina as a love interest (wtf); Lucy’s plans to reunite her parents screech to a halt when she finds out Henry will die if she does; Rogers and Carlyle are on the hunt for murdered witches.
Get out of here, boys. We were having fun with Tiana.
So yeah, let’s give it up for Tiana. After my near abandonment of OUaT last episode, some extra focus on our true heroine has brought me back. The flashbacks show off Tiana as she prepares for her coronation, but Doctor Facilier (I was going to keep calling him Papa Tunde, but it looks like he’ll be sticking around) appears with tales of impending doom. From a massive monster alligator roaming the land. Tiana sets out with Fook and Cinderella, but they soon bump into Prince Naveen, Tiana’s race-appropriate love interest. They hate-flirt a bit, but eventually find common ground. Just in time for Naveen to be mortally wounded by the alligator, which Tiana manages to slay. Facilier then pops up to gloat, retrieves a lost necklace from the alligator’s belly, and cures Naveen. The trade-off of which is Naveen’s imprisonment or something. So close, Tiana. Meanwhile in Hyperion Heights, Sabine enters some food truck fair, and she runs into Earthrealm’s version of Naveen, her old friend Drew. Minor drama ensues regarding Drew’s silent partner, Samdi (Doctor Facilier) sabotaging her truck. But Drew comes to the rescue, and Sabine excels. But Samdi is manipulating Drew to get close to Sabine for some reason. He also wants to get close to Regina, as we find out in the flashbacks they have a sexual past (and the necklace was Regina’s), and in the present Regina realises he’s awake to the curse. But she, oddly, conceals this from Zelena and Carlyle. Speaking of Carlyle, he and Rogers investigate the murdered doctor from last episode, and discover she’s actually a witch of the Dark Coven. As is Another Realm’s Blind Witch, who in Hyperion Heights is a baker. So A from PLL isn’t one of the Dark Coven: they’re killing the Dark Coven. And in subplot purgatory is Henry/Jacinda/Lucy. Basically, Lucy pushes them together for a Now Kiss moment, but then she is slipped a page of the storybook showing that if the curse is broken and magic returns that Henry will die, so she twat blocks her mum.
I’ve been telling you she’s a sassy kid.
Look, I’m as shocked as you are that, after the agony (the boring, boring agony) of last episode that I would have any enthusiasm left in me for OUaT.
But it really is all down to the characters the episode chooses to focus on. When you focus on Zelena, it’s gonna be a bad time.
Learn this lesson, OUaT: more Tiana and more Regina. Always.
Why I hate this episode:
My only gripe with Regina is dreading the impending explanation of her relationship with Facilier. When did she get time to boink a villain from a different realm?
And still on the love interest complaints train, Naveen/Drew does not excite me for Tiana. He’s bland. And his actor also played a bland, pointless love interest on Shameless a couple of seasons ago. Tiana deserves better than bland.
Rogers and Carlyle are saddled with the obligatory work to keep this Dark Coven thing moving, but goddamn, it brought the episode down every time it cut back to them. And the Dark Coven is losing some serious cred if its members include a rehashed Blind Witch and some random doctor.
With the Dark Coven still shrouded in mystery and yet to properly materialise, why the hell is OUaT adding yet another villain with Doctor Facilier? We haven’t had enough time to get to know Gothel, any of the other Coven witches, or really even Drizella, and now here comes yet another villain. Compound this with the fact that this is the final season of OUaT, and none of these characters will have time to develop. It’s too much.
Henry has decided to start a podcast about Hyperion Heights. Where does Henry get money from? Do any of these characters actually have paying jobs?
Oh, and is swapping safety certificates between food trucks a thing? You’d think that the cop who had merely hours ago proven Sabine’s truck was unsafe wouldn’t then be happily buying food from it later on. I don’t think that’s how it works.
But it’s not all bad:
Sabine seemed happy. So that makes me happy.
I had praised Jacinda/Cinderella earlier in the season for seeming emotionally affecting and worth investing in, but since then it’s like OUaT has purposefully driven her into the ground. I couldn’t give a shit about her, anymore. But thankfully, here comes Tiana. She’s actually got a kingdom to look after and citizens to save. She led La Resistance successfully against Tremaine. And her princess dress is way nicer than Cinderella’s. Just as her citizens do, I will look to her for hope.
And as bland as Naveen is, he is very handsome.
Tiana’s return also brought Doctor Facilier’s return. And while I don’t condone the villain overcrowding situation that’s happening, I do condone that we’ve got a new love interest for Regina. And a mature, evil one at that. Sure, Robin was pretty. But he could have never kept up with our Evil Queen.
The fact that Regina lies about Samdi being awake in Hyperion Heights to Zelena and Carlyle also brings with it some salacious questions. I’m intrigued.
Their best moment in the episode is when Regina confronts him privately to reveal she does know he’s awake, and he invites her in. She refuses, but he just casually walks back into his apartment with the door open, and it doesn’t take long for her to just slip right in after him. Get your jush, ‘Gina.
I also enjoyed Regina, Zelena, and Carlyle sitting around the bar like old frenemies. It feels right.
Oh, and Regina and Facilier’s kiss is legit. No chaste hesitation for these two.