Wednesday, May 16, 2012

What I’m Watching: Once Upon a Time (Season Finale)

Once Upon a Time: Season 1, Episode 22 “A Land Without Magic” (C+)

This episode got off to an intense start as Emma experienced a quick flashback and took out her rage on Regina the moment she entered the hospital, prompting her to confess everything and drop the ball on this secret curse. Almost immediately after that, Regina and Emma were suddenly allies, working hard to save Henry’s life and fighting against the eternally duplicitous Mr. Gold. Emma’s battle against Maleficent, spliced in with Charming’s battle with the beast, was a smidge overdramatic and wasn’t entirely useful in terms of the greater plot. Jefferson going to see Belle and sending her to Mr. Gold to let him know that Regina is endlessly manipulative was far more intriguing, and it seems to have helped prompt him to bring the magic back, which is sure to transform Storybrooke in the show’s second season. There had to be some big finish that would reshape this show for season two, and having everyone remember their past lives, albeit less dramatically than in “Lost,” did just that, only to be one-upped moments later by the reintroduction of magic spreading throughout the land. Though I haven’t been entirely impressed with this show thus far, I’m interested to see how the show changes when it returns this fall with its characters newly aware of their double identities and struggling to cope with using magic in their everyday lives in a bureaucratic system in a small town in Massachusetts. This first season was fun but ultimately unfulfilling, but it’s decently appealing and mildly addictive.

Season grade: C+
Season MVP: Robert Carlyle as Rumplestiltskin

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