Fall TV 2014RecapReviewTV

‘Once Upon A Time’ Review/Recap: “White Out”

Emma Doherty ’16 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer

Elizabeth Lail in the Once Upon A Time episode "White Out." Photo Credit: Jack Rowand/ABC.
Elizabeth Lail in the Once Upon A Time episode “White Out.” Photo Credit: Jack Rowand/ABC.

After such a successful season premiere last week, episode 2 of Once Upon A Time titled “White Out” was a massive disappointment in comparison. Before the season began, the writers promised that the show would not turn into a Frozen takeover, however this episode drastically proves otherwise. The main two storylines in the episode were about Elsa (Georgina Haig) in Storybrooke and Anna (Elizabeth Lail)  arriving in the Enchanted Forest. Although these plots may be interesting and attract the attention of new viewers, it was the little details from our main characters that truly meant the most to the show.

Elsa’s arrival in Storybrooke is anything but subtle. After creating the ice monster last week, this week she put up an ice wall around the town so that no one could get out, causing a massive power outage. When Emma (Jennifer Morrison) and David (Josh Dallas) go to investigate, Elsa gets scared and they end up getting trapped in the ice. The best part about these scenes was seeing just how much Emma and David have grown to get to know and love one another. There’s no more awkward tension radiating from Emma whenever he tries to act fatherly and its nice to see her accepting the affection and care of others which has been something she has struggled with since season 1. Even their at at home dynamic with Snow (Ginnifer Goodwin) and the new baby showed how relaxed they were and when Henry asked what babies dream about, you could see where Emma inherited her sense of humor when she and David simultaneously answered “bullfighting” and “laser tag”.

Josh Dallas in the Once Upon A Time episode "White Out." Photo Credit: Jack Rowand/ABC.
Josh Dallas in the Once Upon A Time episode “White Out.” Photo Credit: Jack Rowand/ABC.

Meanwhile, while this wonderful family development is unfolding before us, the audience was subjected to watching a rather unnecessary and ridiculous backstory. So far in the show, viewers have been on board with all the interesting and rare characters that have been thrown at us, but Bo Peep? The line has to be drawn somewhere. Despite introducing this pointless character, we got to see a little bit more about Anna’s journey to the Enchanted Forest and how she and David help each other on the way. This was an interesting little tidbit but was not interesting enough to hold anyones attention for the amount of time it got. While this plot took up about half of the episode, the show neglected to show many of its main characters, overlooking them for temporary minor characters. We got absolutely no coverage on Rumple (Robert Carlyle) and Belle (Emilie de Ravin), but it was cute to see Snow as a new mother and how shes handling the new job and title as mayor.

Speaking of her mayoral title, we are left to assume that she has gotten the position now because once again, the writers didn’t give us much information on the current state of things in the show and we are left to figure it out on our own. Seeing Snow try to mayor alone was rather entertaining and her outburst at the dwarves just went to show that the old Snow isn’t completely gone. Although this scene was fun, it was brief and left us wanting to know more about how she managed to work and fix the power. What we didn’t get to see was a great scene where Snow comes into Regina’s (Lana Parrilla) house, despite being told to go away, and talks with Regina. Here is where it was established that Regina was no longer mayor and that Regina was the one to tell Snow where to go to fix the power outage. This scene held many similarities to the one we got at the end of last season after they had summoned Cora. Seeing Snow and Regina talk to each other like equals is such a rare occasion on this show so make sure to check out the cut scene!

Speaking of leaving out characters, Regina did not make an appearance in the episode until the last three minutes of the show. Despite her scene being a total of 30 seconds, Lana Parrilla managed to break our hearts and then have us crying with joy. Seeing how alone and hurt Regina was, was truly devastating but the love we got to see between mother and son is something the show has needed since the very beginning. After Elsa managed to free Emma and herself, everyone gathered back at the apartment and Henry (Jared Gilmore) listened to David give a speech about never giving up on the ones you love, which coincidentally is the theme of the first half of this season. Despite Regina’s wishes, Henry went back to the mansion to assure her that he wasn’t going anywhere, he made sure she knew he loved her and that he was going to help her through this. This scene meant absolutely everything for the Mills family dynamic and to think that exactly two seasons ago Henry was leaving Regina alone to work on herself, but now he’s coming to her for support is what this show is about; love, family, and understanding.

Hopefully there will be more air time for the main characters on the show so that we can see them grow and develop, however, it seems that the Frozen theme will continue to be dominant for the foreseeable future. At least at the end of this episode, we were introduced to the lovely Elizabeth Mitchell who will be playing The Snow Queen in upcoming episodes. She will surely be a delight to watch and hopefully her dynamic with Elsa will be unique and revealing.

Episode Grade: D

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