Previously: 1x01, Pilot / 1x02, Trust Me / 1x03, Forget-Me-Not / 1x04, The Serpent
1. Is anyone really surprised that the Red Queen has parental issues? In OUAT-verse, either you have A+ parents who die too soon, or you have insane parents who wouldn't last five minutes with the social service but somehow manage to shape your personality and inflict the most lasting damage ever. I hereby dub this ep "the ep in which everyone is Cora". Clearly OUAT writers don't generate new ideas because both Ana and her mother feel like a Cora rip-off at one point or another. It's not necessarily a bad thing because I, for one, have a lot more interest towards people whose main drive is ambition as opposed to the need for revenge. What I don't get is where all these epic delusions of grandeur come from. At least Cora had the grounds to want Regina to be a queen on account of her being, you know, the daughter of a king. Where did Ana's mother's desires come from, given the hovel they lived in, I have no idea. XD Then again, hey, at least she didn't kill Will, right?
Ana's character is becoming more and more intriguing. I love it that she starts out as this naive idealist who believes that "love in a cottage" is possible. (Btw this saying has an awewesome sarcastic continuation in Russian: С милым рай и в шалаше, если милый на "порше"/Love in a cottage is possible if your lover drives a Porche; that's pretty much the evolution of Ana's attitude throughout the episode XD) Her last conversation with her mother is touching, but alas, even Wonderland isn't magical enough to defeat reality. On the one hand, when Ana chose the king over Will, all I could think of was: And that's all she did? I mean, the consequences seem to be far more dramatic than her actions in this episode. Then again, Will must have done something to end up on those Wanted posters, so it's just tpp early to tell yet. On the other hand, a part of me is glad that it was relatively drama-free.
I'm not saying that what Ana did was a good thing. The king didn't even seem to threaten her. He might have just let her go. After all, they already got thrown out of the palace once. But on some level, I suppose I understand Ana's actions. I just wish they'd made it more clear how much time had passed between Ana and Will's arrival to Wonderland and the ball. Because it all depends really on how soon she got tired of this lifestyle. Things in OUAT are prone to happening "too soon", I just do my best not to let it annoy me because after all, if you read actual dairy tales, stuff happens very quickly there too. It did irk me a bit how quickly the king proposed f.ex. The whole situation was quite reminiscent of Cora's, but at least Cora proved herself capable of doing magic; it wasn't just her excess of ambition that attracted the king. Speaking of that: why on earth would the king logically want to marry someone as ambitious as Ana? It's clear as day that if she's so driven, one day she'll get tired of being a token Queen and want to be the actual ruler of the realm (which is what seems to have happened). I have to say I'm a tiny bit disappointed that she had to become a Queen through marriage. I was kind of hoping for some epic seizure of power. But, oh, well.
2. I do enjoy the weird chemistry between Alice and the Queen. Alice is an epic killjoy and I like her less and less with each episode but I'm still intrigued by their shared past. Everyone keeps bringing up the Red Queen "killing" Cyrus, but they have clearly known each other longer. Give me that!
I'm beginning to really enjoy the Red Queen's general attitude towards everything that's going on in Wonderland. It's something like Scar's "I'm surrounded by idiots". Because honestly, when you see this deep scary ravine (btw was anyone else weirded out by the fall not being lethal? Not to mention that it's apparently not that difficult to find the way up again, so what's the issue here even? O_O) and you suggest some really stupid ways of crossing it - like a bridge - don't you think the person who brought you here would have thought about it?
3. The fact that the Red Queen needed the dust to fix Will was transparent from the start, but that didn't make it any less touching.
I like it that while there's still something between them, she's clearly not about to let it get in the way of her plans. Of course I might be wrong and she might be doing all this to bring Will around somehow (though I had a stray thought during the ep that she might be doing this to prove something to her mother; idk what is worse), but for now her motivation is unclear and I personally can't begin to guess what her ultimate goal is or why she's entangled with Jafar, which is good.
I like it that she is the one to save the Knave - but she's not staying to take credit for it. The last thing we need here is more drama. These two have been surprisingly undramatic so far, and I've sort of shipped them a bit in this episode.
Speaking of their relationship, I loved the scene after the ball. Will is so innocently happy that he managed to steal some food, he's clearly not a planner. He's content with the whole "love in a cottage" thing, but Ana isn't, not anymore. He remains an idealist while she is quickly becoming a realist.
Not to say anything bad about Will, but honestly, how did he expect they'd survive? He's this weird type of a nice guy that wants to protect the girl he loves from all the bad things but ends up making things even worse. Without Ana, he clearly goes back to the life of crime and that's how he survives - and yet, he seems quite opposed to stealing when Ana suggests it. (Moral of the story, though: don't let your girlfriend rob a palace - she might end up marrying a king XDDD)
My point is, I prefer Will as his more cynical self. Otherwise he's kind of too fluffy and a bit thick.
4. Alice vs herself. As someone on Tumblr pointed out: "Apparently Pure of Heart = boring as hell."
The whole "trial" thing was predictable as hell; and of course the Red Queen lied, she's evil-ish, what opn earth did you expect, Alice?
What really irked me though was that Alice didn't even try to use the dust on Will. We know Will is saved; Alice doesn't. She keeps a bit of dust but of course instead of helping out the one friend she has in Wonderland - whom she practically bullied into helping her in the first place - she just completely forgets him. The scene in the beginning is touching and sweet, but I wonder what kind of help in Will's case she expects from Cyrus of all people. From what I understand, he can't even do magic unless it's granting a wish and she can wish for Will's release any time, she doesn't need Cyrus to be by her side. Moreover, once she gets her hands on Cyrus, she still shouldn't waste the damn wishes b/c the baddies have his bottle anyway. Ergo, stupid choice is stupid.
5. Cyrus was only mildly annoying here. I feel sorry for the supposed Sultan (I still think it's him and his certainty that Jafar wouldn't kill him makes me even more convinced). The Alice/Cyrus thing, on the other hand, will never stop annoying me. Especially now that they're trying to pull the Snow/Charming "we will always find each other" schtick.
6. Is it me or does Jafar's hair look okay-ish this time? Yes, that's a very important question. XD I did LOL at the following exchange: "I'm intrigued by you, Rabbit. - Not in a... main course kind of way, I hope?" Personally I thought Jafar sounded more zoophiliac than hungry. >_