Tuesday, January 17, 2012

NEW!: Once Upon a Time 1:9 - True North

Overall: 7.5

This episode is pretty standard-issue for this series -- but as it turns out, that means it's still pretty good.

Plot Synopsis:

The official website at ABC.com has a "photo-recap" here.

The Skinny:

This show really has this thing about keeping bio-parents and their kids together, which is okay -- up to a point. It's certainly fully in character for Emma to be dead-set against putting Ava and Nicholas into "the system" given her troubled background. And Michael definitely appeared to be able-bodied and employed, so there was no reason why he couldn't take responsibility for knocking a girl up twelve years ago. But I think we have to be careful not to make "reunification" a hard and fast rule. As a matter of fact, I think many dysfunctions in "the system" can be directly attributed to a near-fetishization of bio-parenthood. Some parents really can't care for their own kids because they are abusive, neglectful, high on drugs, or some combination of those three -- yet many kids have died because we keep placing them back with those same unfit mothers and fathers.

The above, however, is only one small objection to what is otherwise a solid episode. As far as the fairy-land back-story is concerned, there are no huge revelations to be found here, but the link back to the Snow White story we're familiar with was cute. I also appreciated Gretel's refusal to be taken in by the Queen's offer of endless material comforts. If you have not love or freedom, then living in a castle with all the things you could ever want means nothing. A life of luxury cannot feed the soul.

Writing: 7.5

The script suffers a bit in comparison to last week's, but it is still decent.

Acting: 7.0

The acting was pretty average. No performance really stands out.

Message: 8.0

As I noted above, we have to be careful not to automatically assume that a bio-parent will always be the best parent for a child. Still, I'm glad that Michael was forced to man up. He really had no valid excuse for being a git.


  1. One counter-point...

    I don't think this episode was arguing that we should put all kids back with their biological parents. It felt more to me like this was a HOLLAR for parental responsibility and decency. Yes, there was talk of the evils of "the system", but the story wound up centering around a deadbeat dad of able body and sound mind...not around someone unfit. To me, this one felt more like a demand that all of us do our best to take personal responsibility for our conduct...including the children we produce whether we intended to produce them or not.

    As far as that goes...I appreciated the story.

    I am, however, still waiting to figure out what exactly Snow White did to piss off Regina so much...LOL

  2. I am, however, still waiting to figure out what exactly Snow White did to piss off Regina so much...LOL

    INORITE? Maybe they're saving that for the finale or something. LOL!