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Once Upon a Time 1x02: The Thing You Love Most

Posted on the 31 October 2011 by Tvgeek @TVGeek_blog

Once Upon a Time 1x02: The Thing You Love Most

Original Air Date: 30 October 2011

Storyline: Regina does everything in her power to force Emma leave Storybrooke and get her out of her and Henry's lives forever. Meanwhile, the chilling circumstances of how the Evil Queen released the curse upon the fairytale world is revealed.

Trivia: Honeycrisp apples were invented in Minnesota in 1974 and not available commercially till the early 1990s, so there is no way Regina could have tended the trees when she was a little girl. They also look nothing like the apples from Regina's tree, who are most likely Red Delicious.

Best Quote:

The Queen: The only comfort for me is Snow White suffering.
Maleficent: Well, it's her wedding night, I doubt she's suffering right now.

Review: It's rare these days to watch a TV show episode without pausing it to check my Twitter or whatnot, but Once Upon a Time has done it again: I went the entire hour without any distractions and that says a lot about this show's capacity to deliver great actions and well-build characters.

The one fairy tale guy I missed was Prince Charming, but, on the other hand, we had enough of Robert Carlyle both as Mr. Gold and Rumpelstiltskin to make me happy. Not to mention that the showrunners gave us fantasy fans a big gift by casting Kristin Bauer as Maleficent, the Evil Queen's only friend. 
While in Storybrooke Regina and Emma Swan engaged in a war of the wills, to see who wins the competition for Henry's affections, back in the enchanted forest the Evil Queen is gathering the ingredients for the dark curse with Rumpelstiltskin's help - who lends his assistance for what turns out to be a powerful prize: he is the only exiled fairy tale character who seems to know exactly who he is. 
At this point, Rumpel is the most compelling character; his end-game is probably the only thing we might never know until the final battle comes into play - and I really hope the writers keep us guessing with this one. Is he only trying to mess with everyone? Make sure that no one besides him (from the shadows, of course) holds too much power? He helped the Evil Queen by telling her the main ingredient she needed for her curse - and what powerful ingredient that was! -, but he also made sure Emma's life intertwined with the story, by being the one who brought Henry to Regina when he was a baby.
The episode did a good job in showing us a side of the Evil Queen's that we couldn't have suspected: there are things in life that she actually loves. Somehow, I felt for her when she had to go against her only friend to get the dark curse, not to mention the heartbreaking moment when she had to give up the thing she loved most - her father Henry. It's refreshing to see that the characters are not two-dimensional, like they mostly are in the fairy tales. There's not only good versus evil, but there are a million shades of gray in between.
Between all the great moments, there was something I actually didn't like: the special effects. Yes, I know, it's a TV show and the budget is not one to sustain effects that one would see in the movies, but the pilot was so much better from this point of view.
As for Emma, there's the question if she really started to believe - maybe the cinnamon thing convinced her about the connection she shares with Mary Margaret - or if she's just playing Henry with the objective to cure him of his delusions eventually. At this point, I'm actually leaning towards the latter, but time will tell.Once Upon a Time 1x01: Pilot Back to Season 1

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