I honestly thought when I saw the promo it was going to be time travel. I’m so relieved that it was just a flashback because time travel is a headache. Anyway, there were some not so great moments in this episode but as I try and be positive, I’m just going to ignore those and celebrate the good.
Spoilers under the cut for 6.17 Awake.
Snow and Charming
I’ve been pleading at the end of my reviews for what feels like forever for Snow and Charming to wake up. That sleeping curse went on for far too long and while it led to some comedic moments, and had some very sweet moments as well, they deserved to be on screen together. It felt like they’d been sidelined and they are both brilliant actors and deserve better.
I’m guessing cursed!Storybrooke people got progressively more grumpy as they are repeating the same day by the looks of things. That was good continuity in how they showed the same sequence from the season two episode. I really liked Charming’s faith in this episode. He said to Regina that he was certain it would work and “we’ll do whatever it takes to be with her” and then when he faced Mary Margaret he just knew that it would be alright – “somewhere inside you know that.” Usually it’s Snow who has the faith so it was nice to see David return it.
I’m surprised that Snow recognized Rumplestiltskin, and very surprised that she referred to him as Rumple. I loved the repetition of “Emma – what a lovely name” because that was how Rumple woke in the first place. I guess Regina got lucky that the curse didn’t give anyone the name of Emma otherwise poor Rumple would be running out of memory potion.
“Snow White is a hero who wouldn’t let anyone suffer just to get what she wants” – that is what a hero should be but sacrificing their child’s happiness is a bitter pill. I do think parents should put their children first but Emma didn’t look unhappy or hurt, she looked comfortable listening to music and was reading. If she’d been on the streets or being abused they would have leapt through I’m sure. So it was unfortunate for Emma in a way that they caught her in a good moment because her childhood was pretty bad.
Honestly I have mixed feelings about that because Emma was a child. Children should be protected and Snow and Charming essentially made the decision that Emma had to make sacrifices. I don’t really like that. I think if sacrifices have to be made, then nobody should choose on behalf of anyone else but I guess it was just a crappy situation. One of those damned either way type deals because no matter what they chose somebody suffered. They did the greatest good for the greatest number and in the end it was Emma that paid the price.
The scene at the end was really heartwarming but also kinda dangerous. Regina acknowledged that she didn’t know if it would work, so I’m not being funny shouldn’t they have just let the townspeople drink? Emma’s drinking – Henry’s drinking – Regina’s drinking – what happens if they all go into sleeping curse? The black fairy will just cut off their heads when they are sleeping.
I kinda want to do a crack fic now where they do all succumb to the curse and Rumple and Belle (plus the unseen masses) are the only ones left awake to take care of the Black Fairy. Can you just imagine everyone waking up a few months later and what happened? Oh we took care of it. I’m sniggering at the mental image. Picture the blustering because they are important and they can’t have missed the ‘final battle’. Rumple would just say she threatened my child which was the last mistake she ever made. Besides this town is full of heroes and then we could have a parade of minor characters.
Still anyway jokes aside it was heartwarming. Yay for Leroy and Grumpy and Marco and Granny of course. It’s the true love of everyone that cared about them – their kingdom. It was a lovely way for the curse to be broken and tied neatly into the flashbacks. Snow, Charming and Emma sacrificed for the town, so they wouldn’t be trapped forever, and then the town returned the favor. The flash of true loves kiss was great, everyone being poleaxed was a bit much. I did love the Granny and Marco hug though.
The Gold Family
Rumple gave Charming free advice about the pixie flower, and then came and found them to say essentially don’t use it. I bet that’s because for half a second he thought he had an amazing boon in being able to find his son years earlier than the 28 he’d initially thought. Then maybe he went to the town line and realized it was blocked and he couldn’t walk over it, awake or not the curse was intact and he was tied to it. That’s why he said “everyone will be trapped here forever.”
“You don’t have a child that is out there by themselves” “you have no idea what is out there for me” – this was a really powerful exchange because of course Rumple did have a child out there. That was the whole reason for the curse bringing them there, he’s trying to get back to his son. Sometimes I wonder if things would have been different if Rumple had ever confided that, it was a shared pain in a way. They were all trapped in Storybrooke, unable to leave to find their children.
Poor Belle barely got a look-in again. Honestly she needs more screentime! I did love though how Belle said that no matter what Gideon could still come back to them. I know it’s her son and so she’s going to be predisposed that way but still that’s the compassionate and open-minded Belle I loved as a character from the beginning.
Stop taking Rumple’s dagger! Honestly that is getting so ridiculous now and while she gave it back, the Black Fairy can obviously summon it at any time so it’s an empty gesture really. I did love how Rumple vowed that he would never join her. She’s family, she’s the villain of the moment, but he’s going to stand against her. Which to be honest is exactly what Rumple has pretty much always done when the town has been under threat.
“No mother should have to watch their child die” made me wonder if the Black Fairy was speaking from experience? What did Blue do to her? Maybe that was how Blue tricked the Black Fairy into abandoning Rumple by faking his death and that is what sent her spiraling into darkness.
Emma said that the flower survived “Because it needed to” and I instantly corrected that to ‘because it was far enough away from the field Gideon could ignore it while still fulfilling his orders’ which Rumple confirmed to be the truth with his confrontation with the Black Fairy at the end. He knew from that, that Gideon hadn’t chosen her and that the Black Fairy had his heart.
I really love how Rumple said Gideon “has his mother in him” and then vowed to get his heart back. That shows Rumple’s respect for Belle, as the good he sees in Gideon he attributes to her. I think Rumple is too hard on himself really because finding the loopholes is his trait, not Belle’s, so Gideon is a mix of his parents really. Anyway, Rumple got Belle’s heart back once so returning hearts runs in the family. I bet Belle was really relieved when Rumple told her and probably cried that she knew Gideon was still good, I wish we’d seen that on screen. Belle deserves more screentime!
I liked how badass Tiger Lily was at the start where she saved Hook. Just boom and all the lost boys went down. I do wonder though whether her story should have been Tink’s – because of the backstory of being a fairy – and Tink’s actress couldn’t get the time off from iZombie to do it.
Regina in the cursed!flashbacks was brilliant as always. All the awards as the trapped evil queen. She did kinda lose it a little bit when she started ranting in the woods about “where is Snow White” but everyone was always so afraid of her, plus with time being so weird, I bet everyone’s memories would grow fuzzy anyway so it’s no big deal.
Finally Snow and Charming woke up! They also got some quality screentime! I am celebrating this because while they aren’t my favorites, this is an ensemble show and I felt bad for them. Now we just need Belle to get the screentime she deserves. I see next week Zelena is getting her time in the sun. She’s been sidelined pretty badly so while I don’t like her, I’m fine with it, just please let Belle have more screentime! I mean it’s only fair right? Make it equal.
The Black Fairy looks like she’s going to be big in next weeks episode and I’m crazy looking forward to that. I know as they are billing the Black Fairy as the ultimate villain I shouldn’t get attached to her but I can’t help it, I do quite like her at the moment. She’s evil, she’s doing terrible things, but I think she could be redeemed maybe. Perhaps that would be a better way of defeating her? Rather than slaying the monster, do what they did to Regina and make her family instead.