OUaT 2.2 Recap: When the Evil Queen Decides to Stop Being Evil (Maybe)

11 Oct

Episode 2: We Are Both

The real mystery: Which one of the dwarves drives an El Camino?

We open with the seven dwarves investigating the boundary of Storybrooke.  They send Sneezy out across the line, and he gets caught in a blue beam of magic and subsequently convulses within the blue beam.

In the townsquare(ish) Red is organizing clean-up efforts and other support for the aftermath of the Soul Sucker tornado thing as well as the general fall out of having been under an amnesia curse for 28 years.

Prince Charming comes over to Regina’s inquiring about The Hat.  He claims the vines-wallpaper thing last episode was an accident and that she’s having trouble with magic.  He says it in kind of a suggestive way, for some reason.  They trade barbs about who knows how to care for children better (because he’s taking care of Henry currently), and she says,

I will not take child-care advice from someone who put his daughter in a box and shipped her to Maine.

That’s pretty sassy for a magic-less gal the whole town wants dead.   Cutting Regina-isms!  Love that lady!

They trade some more barbs, and it comes down to this:  Charming wants to use The Hat to go to Fairy Tale Land, Regina doesn’t believe the land still exists (supposedly), and once she gets either her son or her magic back, sh*t’s gonna get real.

Fairy Tale Land flashback: Pre-Evil-Queen Regina is trying to ride away and gets caught in some magic vines.  Her mother appears and tells her she’s put a barrier spell on the land so that Regina can’t leave without the King.  They argue about whether Regina wants power–she prefers freedom–and Cora (Mommie Dearest) insists that power means freedom.

Back in ME, everyone’s talking about how to get back to Fairy Tale Land without fairy dust, and the dwarves arrive announcing bad news:  When you leave Storybrooke, your cursed self becomes your only self.  That is, Sneezy now has forgotten that he is Sneezy and believes himself to be only the town pharmacist.

At city hall, everyone’s in an uproar, and Charming–who is de facto leader because he is so dreamy the prince who dared go up against the Evil Queen in Fairy Tale Land–claims he will have a plan figured out in two hours.

Candles: The most important part of magic.

At the mayoral mansion, Regina is practicing Vulcan meditation trying to get her magic back by playing with a candle.  She gets frustrated and heads out to her Benz, where Dr. Hopper confronts her and offers her counseling.  She claims she knows who she is, thank-you-very-much.

Fairy Tale Land flashback: Pre-Evil-Queen Regina is braiding Young Snow White’s hair (dawww!), but then the scene turns tense when Young Snow White finds the ring David from Damages gave Regina.  YSW asks where it came from; Regina responds by saying she got it from her true love, who was killed, and proceeds to murder the child.


Turns out that was a daydream (within a flashback!  Inception!), and Regina actually told YSW that she doesn’t remember where that ring came from.

With her dad, Regina laments that her mom is trying to mold her into an Evil Queen and that she’s going crazy because of this.  Dad says Cora just wants the best for her.  When she asks how her mom got like this, Dad says a man gave her a book of spells.  Bum bum bum!!!

In ME, Regina sneaks into Rumplestiltskin’s shop and looks for this aforementioned book of spells, where he accuses her of “needing the smell of the written word to get the magic flowing again.  Maybe if you’d relax, it’d just happen.”  I’m not imagining that that’s kinda dirty, right?

Rumplestiltskin says it’s not in his best interest to help her jumpstart her magic, and she counters that it’s not in his best interest to let the townspeople know the enchanted forest still exists–this is a secret they’re keeping together.  Boom!  There it is!  He gets her the book and says,

Careful, deary.  These are straight up spells–rough on the system.

Lolwut?  Rumplestiltskin then tells Regina she looks like her mom with that book under her arm.  She almost cries about it.

Fairy Tale Land flashback: Pre-Evil-Queen Regina sneaks into her sleeping mother’s bedroom to steal the book of spells and summon the man who turned her mama on (to magic).  Rumplestiltskin appears and says ominously, “I knew this day would come.”  Did Cora promise Regina to him?!  Rumplestiltskin says they belong together!!!  Also, Pre-Evil-Queen Regina is so sweet she’s giving me diabetes.

Charming and Henry are hanging chez Mary Margaret and talking about how to use The Hat and what Charming is going to say to the townspeople in two hours.  He says he was always the fighter while Snow White was the talker.  Not sure how accurate this is, but whatever.  Henry shows him the fairy tale book to show him where The Hat came from.

Charming goes to Rumplestiltskin to get a potion to find the Mad Hatter.  Rumplestiltskin acquiesces, but his fee is a non-interference guarantee.  Rumplestiltskin also reveals he’s pretty upset about this barrier spell thing.

Fairy Tale Land flashback: Rumplestiltskin is wooing Regina to the dark side, telling her she has a lot of magic potential.  He’s also talking about her using magic in kind of a suggestive way.  He then directs her attention to a large, rectangular thing that is gift wrapped and suggests she put her mom through a portal.  She says she doesn’t want to hurt anyone (dawwww!).

Back in ME, Regina sits under her apple tree–of which the apples are lookin’ pretty gross–and sucks dust off the spell book.  The apples magically look more delicious.

Charming follows the potionized hat to find the Mad Hatter in a turned-over car.

So, um… Granny’s a badass. But Regina will see your badassitude and raise you an arrow caught out of the air.

Regina shows up at town hall, all magicized.  She does a few parlor tricks, grabs Henry, and skidaddles.

Charming exhorts the Mad Hatter to get The Hat to work.  They are both convinced Fairy Tale Land still exists, but the Mad Hatter doesn’t think he can help.  He runs off.

Red catches Charming as he’s trying to catch the Mad Hatter, and she tells him the whole town’s coming apart, Regina has both Henry and her magic back, etc.

In Henry’s room, he’s upset that Regina made him feel as if he was crazy his whole life.  Regina tries to win his affections by promising to teach him magic.  He doesn’t warm to the idea and expresses that she is evil and twisted.  The conversation culminates in an “I don’t want to be you,” and Regina looks so sad because she said that exact thing to her own mommy so long ago and far away.

Push her!

Fairy Tale Land flashback: Regina and Cora unveil the present, which is (duh!) a looking glass.  Cora is unimpressed and says in ironic foreshadowing, “You will hold the hearts of your people in your hands.”  She says Regina will be stuck with her forever, and an image of Rumplestiltskin appears encouraging Regina to shove her mother through, which she does.

Charming stands atop a car on the edge of town trying to keep the moving-minded town at bay.  He calls for everyone to embrace his or her strengths and weaknesses and get back to work at their regular jobs, and then they all can work together against Regina.  It’s a pretty speech, and the town accepts it.

Fairy Tale Land flashback: Regina tries to give the spell book back to Rumplestiltskin, and she’s upset because she really liked having power, and she’s afraid of what that means for her character development.  She asks Rumplestiltskin’s price for helping her, and he says ominously, “Someday you’ll do something for me.”  Bum bum bum!!!! Also, she takes the book and wants a promise that she won’t turn out like her mom, but Rumplestiltskin says that’s up to her.  Bum bum bum!!!

Charming shows up at Regina’s house, sword in hand, to see Henry.  She tells Henry to come down and go home with Charming.  She apologizes to Henry for all the stuff she’s done to him, including forcing him to come with her and making him feel crazy.  She says she wants to redeem herself (dawwww!!!!!!!!!! but is it true?)

I want to believe your sweet, sad face so much! But can I trust you?

Charming wants her to prove it.  He asks about the existence of Fairy Tale Land.  She admits it does exist, but she claims to not know how to get there.

The dwarves, meanwhile, are going to the mine with their pickaxes to find fairy dust.

Henry tells Geppetto where to find Pinocchio, but when Geppetto arrives, Pinocchio has vanished.

A scene of Rumplestiltskin at the city limits.

At Regina’s house, she hesitates about throwing the book of spells into the fire and decides to lock it up in a cabinet instead because that sort of thing always works, especially in the movie Clue.

“What are we up to? Just sitting here spiking your blood sugar with our sweetness.”

Charming and Henry sit at the bar at Granny’s Diner and discuss how they’re going to go on a heroic journey together back into Fairy Tale Land (dawww!).

In Fairy Tale Land, Emma and Snow White are being dragged by Mulan’s horse toward some crappy-looking encampment, where Snow White tries to escape at the stupidest time possible (because now instead of just two people to deal with, there are dozens).  Mulan throws them into some sort of dungeon-ish pit, where a shadowy figure appears and introduces herself as Cora, a friend.  Bum bum bum!!!!!!!


  • One of my favorite scenes this episode was when Red takes on a leadership position to help reorganize the town.  I like this new side of her character a lot and look forward to not having to see her in stereotypical slut gear anymore.
  • The obvious solution, Tish points out, is to push Regina over the city limits so she’ll forget she’s the Evil Queen.  However, did Regina ever think she was just Regina Mills, Mayor?  She never really had an amnesia persona; she was just playing the part so that she could make sure everyone else kept in line.
  • Prince Charming seems to make deals with Rumplestiltskin without much hesitation, especially since Snow White isn’t there to tell him it’s a bad idea.  However, Snow White didn’t really seem to have a problem making deals with him, either.  And their deals with Rumplestiltskin usually don’t have devastating consequences.  Is this because Rumplestiltskin has some special place in his heart for their true love? Or because they’re the parents of the savior who ends the curse?  Or because they’re big-time enemies of the Evil Queen, and the enemy of his enemy is his friend?
  • Why is everybody talking about magic leeringly as if it is sexual potency?  Is this usual?  They didn’t make a deal of that last season, but now everybody’s talking to Regina as if she’s got ED.  Maybe they’re just trying to put her in her place and using innuendo to do so because…feminist rant?
  • With all that looking glass stuff and holding-people’s-hearts stuff, I really, really thought Cora was going to be the Queen of Hearts.  But I guess she’s not?  I guess she’s just a lady in a pit?
  • Re: Rumplestiltskin and Pre-Evil-Queen Regina:  Did Cora make some deal with Rumplestiltskin about her daughter?  Has Regina already done the thing she was supposed to do for Rumplestiltskin as payment for sending her mom through the mirror?  Where did Cora go in the mirror–this corner of Fairy Tale Land?
  • Is Regina just playing sweet, or is she actually turning over a new leaf?  I want her to turn over a new leaf in a way, but I also love her as Evil Queen.  Maybe it’ll be like in Xena where Xena goes on a quest to redeem herself but she still loves fighting:  Maybe Regina will be struggling with her evil nature a lot.  Does this mean that Emma Swan is going to be Gabrielle?
  • I’m having a lot of, as Tumblr would say, feels about this episode.  Sweet Baby Pre-Evil Queen?  Sweet Dreamy Heroic Grandpa Prince Charming?  Sweet Sad Conflicted Baby Henry?  Sweet Sad Conflicted Not-as-Evil-But-Maybe-Just-Scheming Evil Queen?  So many sweet things!

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