Playing Catch Up: ‘Once Upon a Time’ Halfway Point & ‘Once Wonderland’

I realized something as I watched this week’s episode of Once Upon a Time in Wonderland: I enjoyed it less because I have come to absolutely adore the original, Once Upon a Time. I love how each episode of OUAT delves deeper into each characters background so we learn about their lives pre-curse. Because of this storytelling method I have learned about Prince James/David’s promise to always find Snow White/Mary Margaret and I grew a new appreciation for my favorite is-he-or-isn’t-he baddie Rumpelstiltskin/Mr. Gold.

However, Once Wonderland has not given me the same chance to connect with the characters. This week when I believed we would finally get the goods on the back-story with the Knave and Anastasia the Red Queen (who I don’t hate nearly as much as I hate Regina/the Evil Queen), but instead we got a Jafar origin story. I didn’t even watch Lost, but for some reason I find it hard to take Naveen Andrews seriously in this role. Whereas Lana Parrilla (Regina) wears her evilness like the most delicious of mink coats, Andrews just seems out of place wearing Jafar’s costumes. He does play bad pretty well and I did like seeing the evolution of his character, but he doesn’t seem right. (Speaking of costumes, someone must have had a ball designing for both these shows because between the steam-punk inspired Wonderland and the magical fairy-tale land garb I am seriously in love. They are truly fantastic.)

Another problem I have with Once Wonderland is the character of Cyrus. He seems

like a really nice guy, but I know nothing about him except that he taught Alice to sword fight and is a genie. I can’t care about his character until they give him more screen time and I feel like they don’t give him enough at all. OUAT has many more characters and manages to balance them all pretty well, but for some reason Once Wonderland can’t do the same.

As of right now I am excited to see how the rest of OUAT unfolds and how and when the curse will be broken. With each passing episode I am falling more and more in love with Prince James/David and Henry who is possibly the world’s cutest ten? year old. I love seeing his growing relationship with Emma and I do feel bad for Regina even if she is evil because she did raise this kid for however many years and now this stranger comes along and he hates her so that must be hard to deal with. I hope to catch up soon because I keep seeing commercials for the current season and I don’t want to see any more spoilers-like I know at least some of them like Henry and Emma are out of Storybrooke, but I don’t know how they got there. Only time will tell and I am excited to continue this adventure, both down the rabbit hole and in “the real world.”

Final Words

Favorite quotes:

  • Snow White: I guess if true love was easy we’d all have it. (1.3)
  • Emma: I’m just trying to be responsible! Henry: I’m just trying to spend time with you! (How can you not love this kid??) (1.4)

Questions:

  • What gave Henry this idea that everyone in Storybrooke was really a cursed fairy-tale character? I know it came from reading the book, but why when he read it did it make him think of his town?
  • Who does Henry think he is in the book? What (if any) is his connection to Regina’s father (is he just named after him)?
  • Is Graham really dead? Maybe I just don’t want to believe it, but it seemed too quick and sudden
  • Who is this (handsome) stranger? Since he is a writer, did he write Henry’s book? (My first thought was that he’s the Big Bad Wolf since we still know nothing about Granny and Ruby’s back-story at this point.)
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