Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Once Upon a Time - Smash the Mirror

Failing to control her powers, Emma (Jennifer Morrison) turns to Rumpelstiltskin (Robert Carlyle) for help to take her magic away. Seizing on the opportunity to acquire the magic energy necessary to fill the hat and move one-step closer to breaking the dagger's control of him, Mr. Gold happily obliges (although he does fail to mention he plans to trap Emma inside the magic hat along with her magic). Although he's sat on the sidelines for most of the season, helping out here or there when it benefited him most, the true faces of Rumpelstiltskin emerges here as the villain plans to sacrifice his grandson's mother for his own ends and collect the other necessary ingredient for his spell: the heart of Captain Hook (Colin O’Donoghue).

Even after momentarily putting the Snow Queen (Elizabeth Mitchell) out of play, Gold's plan eventually fails thanks to the intervention of Elsa (Georgina Haig) who convinces Emma to accept rather than run from the magic within her. However, the momentary victory is short-lived as the Snow Queen, now freed from Rumpelstiltskin's enchantment, commences with one of her own first drawing her new sisters near to her and second preparing a curse which will turn the inhabitants of Storybrooke against each other.

The two-hour episode clues us into several important pieces of information including how Elsa ended up trapped in the magical urn, what happened to her sister Anna (Elizabeth Lail) and all of Arendelle, how the Snow Queen arrived in our world, and the revelation that pages from the book can be rewritten giving hope to both Regina (Lana Parrilla) and Robin Hood (Sean Maguire) that they may achieve their happy ending after all. (Could the mysterious Sorcerer be the book's author?) Regina also seizes on the unusual opportunity to instruct both Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) and Charming (Josh Dallas) on how to do the right thing and support their daughter by not allowing Emma to destroy a piece of herself for any reason.

Although the immediate threat of an out-of-control Emma is dealt with, and Regina continues to embrace her hero's journey, the episode reminds us we have a pair of powerful villains in town both of whom have their own plans for the citizens of Storybrooke. Despite the number of reveals the two-hour episode still leaves several questions to be answered? Does "Smash the Mirror" foreshadow the end of Hook? Is Anna truly dead (or just frozen in place for all these years)? And can Emma and Elsa do anything to stop the spell (or will they even want to if the Snow Queen's design of her new sisterhood takes effect)?

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