Once Upon a Time Redeems then Dumps a Former Villain

first_imgLet us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. Drizella’s redemption arc has been happening in the background of Once Upon a Time for a while. This week, it takes center stage, if only so the show can get it out of the way. We get to see Drizella taking Henry’s advice to patch things up with Anastasia. Or trying to, at least. After all, things weren’t always so bad between them. The opening shows the sisters as little girls lost in the woods. Anastasia lights a Tangled lantern to let her sister know where she is. Anastasia promises never to leave Drizella and the two hug and use their lanterns to find a way home. These good feelings didn’t last very long. We flash forward in the flashback to a Drizella hellbent on casting the curse and making her mother suffer. The next time we see her, she’s a new initiate in Gothel’s group of witches.Gothel sends the witches off to find a special flower. Whoever does will have be guaranteed one of the two open spots in the Coven of Eight. Drizella teams up with another young witch with sibling issues. This witch has oddly candy-themed powers, and it’s soon revealed that she’s Gretel, grown estranged from her brother Hansel. They save each other from a log trap, growing ever closer before coming to a fork in the road. They agree to split up and turn in the flower as a team. That’s when Gothel appears to Drizella. It turns out there is no flower. And there’s only one spot available. It’s going to either Gretel or Drizella, whoever kills the other.Adelaide Kane, Sara Canning (Photo via ABC)The whole point of this flashback is to further flesh out Drizella as a character. As much as she’s trying to be a good person in the present day, we needed to see that she was never entirely evil. Jealous, yes. And almost entirely manipulated by Gothel. Much as she does in the present day, she tries to do the right thing here. She doesn’t want to kill Gretel. She offers a way out. She tries to convince Gretel to blow off Gothel with her, and forget about joining the Coven. But Gretel got the same conversation that Drizella did, and she’s determined to win. She attacks Drizella, forcing a fight to the death. Drizella ends up stabbing Gretel in the back, and that’s how she became irrevocably involved with the witches.In the present, Gothel is still getting in Drizella/Ivy’s business. Now, she’s taunting her for not being able to find Anastasia. She still offers her help. Fortunately, Ivy knows better now. Gothel only wants to get the Dark One’s dagger, and Ivy knows that’d be bad news for everyone. Including Anastasia. Gothel does do one useful thing here, though. She warns Ivy that someone is trying to killer. The witch murderer is still on the loose, and going by a suspicious box of chocolates in the Belfrey Tower lobby, Ivy’s next. Those fears are only confirmed when she goes home at the end of the day. A mysterious figure in a creepy baby mask tries to stab her to death. Ivy escapes, but that’s one spooky looking mask. This is about as unsettling as Once Upon a Time has ever gotten.Lana Parrilla (Photo via ABC)She asks Regina for help, and she gets it. That is, until Dr. Facilier walks in. He offers Ivy a magic bean that will take her to another realm. There, she’ll be safe from the witch killer. In exchange, he wants Anastasia’s life. He even gives Ivy a way to make Anastasia come to her. Just like she did when she was a kid, she puts the lantern in the air, hoping to bring Anastasia to her. It works. Anastasia comes to her sister and believes every word about how Drizella wants them to be at home together. It’s only when Drizella blows sleeping powder into her face that she realizes her sister has lied to her again. Despite legitimately trying to be a better person, she’s still out for herself. She brings Drizella to Dr. Facilier, who starts performing the ritual that will take her life. Perhaps somewhat predictably, it goes wrong. Anastasia starts to wake up, and it’s all Gothel’s doing.In a fun and emotional parallel with the flashback, Gothel tries to force another fight to the death. This time, Drizella is holding a knife and Anastasia is holding a piece of broken glass. If Anastasia dies, Gothel gets her magic. If she kills her sister, her heart darkens and she’s no longer the Guardian. Either way, Gothel wins. But this time, Anastasia has learned from her mistakes. She refuses to fight her sister, proving that she really does love her. The power of sisterly love defeats Gothel’s plan for now, and she retreats. With both sisters alive and the magic bean in hand, they escape into their home realm. Regina’s a little annoyed about it, but she understands Anastasia needs to be safe. Both from Gothel and from this witch serial killer running around. Besides, she’s broken curses before. She’ll find a way without Anastasia.Adelaide Kane, Yael Yurman (Photo via ABC)You know it’s a good episode of Once Upon a Time when every scene and subplot ends up being important. Not one minute of the hour is wasted. The subplot where Lucy tries to get her dad to hang out with his old friends looked like it was going nowhere. It’s three guys hanging out in a bar, playing Galaga. Then, they try to bring him out of his funk by telling him to ask out the next woman who walks in… which happens to be Jacinda. To his credit, he gives it a shot. He starts talking about how fate keeps bringing them together. Honestly, it’s not a bad line. Until she asks him to prove it. If he can flip a token into a mug across the bar, she’ll believe that the fairy tales are real, and they’re meant to be together. He almost does. The token would have gone in had someone not grabbed the mug out of the way.But that one moment sets up the most hopeful ending an episode of OUAT has had in a while. While relaxing at home later that night, Jacinda decides to try her own token flip. From behind the back, it lands perfectly in a glass across the room. She’s starting to believe. Even better, it turns out Facilier never intended to take Anastasia’s life to begin with. His cards told him exactly how events would play out. This was all a ploy to get on Regina’s good side. When Anastasia woke up, he siphoned off some of her magic to give to Regina. Magic she might be able to use to break Henry’s curse.Dania Ramirez (Photo via ABC)As a character, I’m still not sure about this dude. The show just hasn’t given us enough information about him. We know he wants the Dark One’s dagger, but why? And what’s so important about him not getting his hands on it? Being kept in the dark like this prevents us from getting too invested in his character, and that kind of sucks. On the bright side though, it does allow for twists like this. And I have to admit, it was exciting seeing him hand that bottle of magic to Regina. I’m not going to say that twist is entirely worth the underused character, but it helps.But, the ending isn’t all hope and rainbows. Right before it lets us go for the week, Once Upon a Time drops a pretty shocking reveal. I mean, of course it does. It’s a soap opera with Disney characters, what do you expect? As Nick walks away from the guys’ night out, he opens his trunk. Inside, are a ton of chocolate boxes, and the costume worn by the murderer who tried to kill Drizella. It would appear Nick/Jack is the serial killer. Does it make a ton of sense? Not really. But I’m sure the show will find a way to justify it next week.Overall, this episode of Once Upon a Time was fun. The flashback and present-day scenes paralleled nicely, and each individual story moved the overall plot forward. This show is at its most frustrating when it’s spinning its wheels, and I’m glad I can’t accuse any part of last night’s episode of doing that. Drizella and Anastasia’s exit doesn’t sit right, though. They’ve been so important to the plot this season and their exit comes out of nowhere. It feels like, after Gothel was revealed as the true villain, the show didn’t know what to do with Ivy/Drizella anymore. The love triangle with Henry wasn’t going to happen, and I guess they couldn’t figure out how to keep her involved in the plot if she stuck around, so they sent her off to another realm. At least she got a decent story before her exit. Stay on targetcenter_img Once Upon a Time’s Finale Was Everything We Loved About an Imperfect ShowHenry Screws Everything Up Again on Once Upon a Time last_img read more