What did you think about last Sunday’s episode of Once Upon a Time, ‘Fruit of the Poisonous Tree’? Read Selina’s review and share your own thoughts in the comments!
This was the episode in which we began to delve into the backstory of the Queen, and to explore the breakdown of the relationship between her and Snow White. What I thought was going to be a Regina centric episode turned out to be more focused on Sidney, aka. Snow White‘s Magic Mirror, aka. Aladdin‘s Genie. (Honestly the best thing about this episode was that it opened the door for us to eventually meet Aladdin!)
Meet the nicest guy in the kingdom! Yaay. Oh wait he dies.
The episode opened with Snow White’s father, King Leopold, finding the lamp and unlocking the Genie. And, being the philanthropic superhero that he was (can you tell that I love this man?), Leopold confessed that he already had everything he needed and granted the Genie his freedom. Lesson to be learned, children? Never be nice to strangers, apparently!
This was such an interesting scene, because I for one was not expecting Sidney Glass to be the embodiment of two separate fairytale characters! By venturing into Aladdin territory the show is really moving away from the Grimm-centric storylines (but still primarily Disney, hmm), and it opens the door for many more adventures of the Genie… which of course would be more appealing if we didn’t know what a selfish man he turned out to be. But he did warn Leopold, a horrible fate would befall anyone who made their wishes. Even, it turned out, when these wishes were selfless. How unfair is that?
We meet the Evil Queen for the first time, sans the evil.
The first chronological glimpse of the queen was very misleading, as it made it appear as if she was the poor victim of a loveless marriage. And in some ways, I suppose she was: King Leopold, in all his well meaning wisdom, proclaimed his undying love for Snow White’s departed mother in front of the whole kingdom, and that’s enough to drive anyone to the edge. But the queen was evil way before this, I strongly believe. It was all an act, and she was so coldly calculating, it’s frustrating. I hate it when villains always outsmart the good guys.
This was of course also what happened in Storybrooke, which is why this episode frustrated me to no end. Regina and Mr. Gold seem to keep winning the small battles; even Emma being appointed as sheriff ended up working to to Regina’s advantage. We need the good guys to get the upper hand just once, otherwise it’ll just feel futile and get stale.
Don’t bite the hand that feeds you! And don’t get the snakes of Agrabah to do it, either.
One of the best things about this episode was the way in which Genie brought about his own misfortune. Once Upon a Time likes to turn the fairytale stories on their heads and in this week’s episode not only was the Genie and the Magic Mirror revealed to be the same person, but we also learned that the Magic Mirror wasn’t trapped by the Queen. He trapped himself, and he deserved it!
Because as horrible as the Queen’s manipulative games were, what happened to King Leopold was 100% the Genie’s fault. The fact that he would even consider killing the king of awesomeness for “love” was just outrageous, and I’m glad that he didn’t get his wish the way he wanted in the end. The Queen is easier to understand because she’s just evil, whereas the Genie was selfish yet tried to justify his actions. Jerk. (Isn’t it sad that I’m using that word to describe this guy?)
Basically, Sidney just needs to be taken down. There was no excuse for his actions in the fairytale world, and clearly his sense of justice hasn’t been righted by his time spent entrapped by the Queen. The term “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me” applies perfectly to Sidney in this case, and I just need Emma to just beat him in something, figure him out and trick him and drive him out of town (and then let’s see what happens when he tries to leave)!
Meanwhile, in Storybrooke…
David and Mary Margaret made a brief appearance this week just to drive home the point that yes, they are carrying on their adulterous affair as opposed to just coming clean to his wife. Um, wtf? Look, I love Snowing as much as the next fan, but this is ridiculous. David’s attitude of trying to have Mary Margaret while still avoiding confronting his wife is so textbook (no pun intended) adultery, and yeah, he’s secretly a fairytale character with amnesia, but he doesn’t know that. Mary Margaret doesn’t know that. If this is so true love, why not just come clean to Abigail? For the sake of storytelling tension, I suppose, but it’s not good enough, and it makes it difficult to root for them. If these two don’t make this love official by next week’s episode, I’m… tweeting the writers. That’s right! That’ll show ‘em.
And speaking of things that are off, I didn’t like the final scene between Emma and Henry. Yes, we know that Regina is evil. Henry knows that she’s evil. But Emma doesn’t, as much as she doesn’t like her. Yet Emma is actively turning Henry against his legal mother by telling him, “Regina won’t let me see you” (paraphrased). Dude. Not cool.
1,001… questions left to be answered.
It was interesting for an episode that went back as far as it did that we saw no hint of the Queen/Snow White relationship. We know from ‘The Heart is a Lonely Hunter’ that they were on good terms before the Queen tried to have her killed, but where did that hate come from? How did Snow ruin her life? How did the Queen get so evil? Luckily we’re going to meet Regina’s mother soon, and hopefully that’ll give us some more insight.
All in all this was a fairly good episode in terms of establishing Sidney’s character, but not one of my favorites. I guess maybe this is because I really, really detested the fact that evil kept winning, which in a way is a good thing: Once Upon a Time can make me this frustrated because I care so much about the storyline. I need the good guys to win!
What did you think about the episode? Share your thoughts in the comments!