Once Upon a Time Season 7 Episode 18 – TV Review

OUaT The Guardian Gold Samdi gunpoint

Maybe next time he’ll actually pull the trigger, though.

My advice about shooting people was for Samdi, but if Gold wants to take it on board, then I can live with that.

What I can’t live with is more tedious, empty episodes of OUaT.

And yet somehow I’m not dead. Am I immortal? Or just hyperbolic?

TL;DR Nothing really happens as we learn that one time Gold almost gave the Dark One dagger to Alice but then didn’t; present day Gold freaks out when the dagger goes missing, but he finds it and it doesn’t matter; he does destroy his relationship with Regina, though; Tilly and Robin go on a date; Henry reveals to Jacinda that he is Lucy’s father.

Who knew a blood test would be the thing to prove magic exists? Science, you have failed us.

So once more, without feeling, we’ll get the flashbacks out of the way first. We see Gold in Another Realm on his mission to test Alice to see if she’s the Guardian. Fook is against it, but Gold does it, anyway, because he really wants to get to that afterlife with Belle. Facilier also shows up for some requisite screentime, so Gold makes use of him and tries to coerce Alice into killing Facilier in order to cure Fook’s, her father’s, poisoned heart. Alice can’t do it, thus passing the test of character and confirming she is the Guardian (I think?). But at the last moment, Gold decides not to transfer the Dark One power to her so she can instead live a mortal life with her lady love, Robin. Thus, Gold slowly succumbs to his original Rumple form. Who cares? Meanwhile in the present, Gold notices the Dark One dagger is missing after Nick’s body is found in the interrogation room. He finds evidence Samdi did it, and goes to Regina for help. She refuses, so Gold just goes guns blazing on Samdi on his own, but chickens out and instead decides to steal Regina’s one whiff of magic to do a locator spell. He finds the dagger in Tilly’s backpack for some reason, but Regina is less than amused that Gold took her only way to cure Henry from her. Bad move, Gold. Meanwhile, Tilly and Robin go on a date. It’s complicated by Tilly hearing voices which we later discover are caused by the dagger, but Robin isn’t going to let the one blonde lipstick lesbian in town slip through her fingers no matter how insane she is, so chooses to be chill with things. Meanwhile, Henry harangues Rogers into helping him get back into Nick’s apartment to find that blood test result stating he is Lucy’s father. They have a minor run-in with Naveen/Drew that doesn’t matter, and then Henry reveals to Jacinda that hey, he is Lucy’s father and maybe fairytales are real.

I don’t think many women would could consider finding out a man they don’t know is their child’s father to be a fairytale, Henry.

At this point, does anyone care about the Guardian stuff? I had to do a double take when Anastasia was supposedly confirmed as the Guardian because it wasn’t adequately set up, but I accepted it. But now we’re told that actually she isn’t, and that Tilly/Alice is. Except she maybe also isn’t?

If the answer is that no matter who gets the Dark One dagger they will be cursed with at best the cruelty of immortality, and at worst an immortal life as a supervillain, then make that the answer, show. Tell us that the Guardian was just a myth and Gold will have to make a difficult choice on whether or not to suffer himself or pass it on.

But OUaT doesn’t do that. Instead, Gold’s choice to apparently suffer nobly and revert to Rumple in the flashbacks is just something for him to bide his time while he searches for another option. And he doesn’t even revert to evil; he’s a nice Rumple this time.

What’s the point of this story, OUaT? We don’t have the time to waste on these go-nowhere episodes.


Why I hate this episode:

The only two things that happen this episode that propel the story are Regina’s abandonment of Gold, and Henry’s revelation to Jacinda of the blood test. That’s it. And the Regina/Gold stuff only tangentially involves her anyway. He just needed her McGuffin powder for a locator spell. There was no bigger story between them in any other way. It’s pathetic.

The fact that the Henry/Jacinda plot element is more valuable than a Regina/Gold one is the true insult.

Disney puts its hand back down its pants and has this bizarre Coco setup for when Gold is mooning over Belle’s photo in the flashbacks. It is also oddly not commented upon or factored into the story in any way. Why?

Why does Gold get to decide that Alice wouldn’t want immortality?

Samdi/Facilier’s powers seem pretty great on their own (he teleports Gold within Hyperion Heights just this episode). Why is he so hellbent on getting the Dark One dagger? At least Gothel has the excuse of being depowered in Earthrealm (I think? I don’t remember. It’s been so long since we saw her).

Oh, and Rogers’ world is rocked when the autopsy on Nick comes back saying he was stabbed through the heart from the inside. Which means obviously the fabric of reality must be tearing at the seems. And not, you know, that the medical examiner maybe made a mistake or something.


But it’s not all bad:

With only a handful of episodes left, I’m willing to tolerate anything that gets our “asleep” characters on the ball.

Regina is the only bright spot of the episode, and in a very limited appearance. I particularly liked Gold’s jab at her about her “boyfriend,” Samdi. Hey, dude. You missed your chance six and a half seasons ago. Don’t be hatin’.

The fallout between Regina and Gold is also sincere, despite being precipitated by McGuffin bullshit. Gold did take away Regina’s only means of curing Henry. And for petty, selfish reasons. Regina is not someone you want as your enemy, so let’s hope she makes good on her anger at him.

Alice’s passing of the test of character was predictable, but I was still kind of proud of her for not killing Facilier to (supposedly) save her father. I am a little disappointed that Gold didn’t let her take over the dagger, though. If she truly was pure of heart and would get the immortality, but not the evil, does that mean it would give her light magic, instead? I’m confused, but intrigued.

Zelena wasn’t in this episode.

Belle is only in this episode via photograph and pre-recorded lines, so that’s nice. No angsty ghosts or anything.

I admire Robin’s deliberate ignorance of Tilly’s mental illness and homelessness in her quest for that ‘tang. You go get it, girl.

Oh, and Rumple proves there’s still something human left in him, as he gets distracted by Fook’s chest cleavage. As are we all.

OUaT The Guardian Rumple Fook handshake

Why is Fook less concerned with Gold stalking his daughter after he’s transformed into his monster self?

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About ijusthateeverything

Sincerity is death.

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