New Show Recap

New Show Recap: Once Upon a Time, Episode 4×05, “Breaking Glass”

Hello, all! Time for another OUAT! We’re currently on episode 4×05, and things are only going to get colder from here!

The episode opens with the Snow Queen creating a creature out of ice. The creature’s eyes light up as the Snow Queen imbues it with her magic.

At the police station, Emma and Elsa are still going through the city’s records trying to find Anna and trying to determine just who the Snow Queen might be. Neither one of them remembers who the Snow Queen is, though she seems to know who they are, and it alarms Emma. She thinks the Snow Qyueen may have taken their memories.

Hook enters the sheriff’s office with more records from the mayor’s office…in modern clothes, finally! Will Scarlet calls out that they’ve forgotten to give him dinner, and Emma gives him a pop tart and some water. Will asks when he’ll be free, but Emma replies when she says so. Hook tells Emma he’s going to take Henry sailing for the afternoon, and Will Scarlet easily sees through Hook’s supposed ply to get closer to Emma by befriending Henry. Hook threatens Scarlet and advises him to keep his thoughts to himself.

Elsa is going through the records and finds the pictures Regina had taken of Emma when Emma had first arrived. Elsa and Emma are going through the pictures, many of which feature Emma and Henry, until they come to a picture of Emma and the Snow Queen together. The problem? Emma doesn’t remember meeting the Snow Queen during her first weeks in Storybrooke. Yeah, maybe because you changed the timeline, genius!

Scott & Zelda bored at a party
No, really, I was beginning to feel like this. Image via Giphy.

Emma decides to go to Regina to see if she knows who the Snow Queen is since Regina had the pictures taken. Yeah, let’s bug Regina some more and remind her of how your family has pretty much fucked up her life, Emma.

Regina is struggling to find a spell to unfreeze Marian, and Sid pops into the mirror to deliver whatever news he has. Regina demands, “Where is she?” Of course Sid starts to be a smartass and ask, “Who’s she — Snow White? The Snow Queen? Emma Swan?” Regina orders him again to find the Snow Queen so she can force her to unfreeze Marian, and Sid had better do it, “or you’ll find out what sorry really is.” Sid really needs to learn how to shut the fuck up.

Snow and Charming have left Belle to babysit Neal while they go out. Snow doesn’t want to leave the baby behind, but Charming assures her that she needs to have some time alone with him away from the baby. Snow agrees and they leave to go on their evening stroll. It’s a lot less romantic than it sounds. They should have just gone to the bingo hall.

Emma and Elsa pull up in front of Regina’s vault. Emma (again!) expresses remorse to Elsa over how she screwed Regina over. Wah, wah, wah. Elsa urges Emma to talk to Regina and try to make amends. For like the fourth time. Because if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

We flash back to a teenage Emma shoplifting, and she almost gets caught by one of the clerks until another teenage girl comes to her rescue and assures the clerk their dad is waiting outside while they shop. Which is a total fakeout, and the girl has a credit card so they can buy stuff! They buy all sorts of junk food and exit the store, but they have to run away to evade the credit card’s owner, who tries to chase them down. The girl introduces herself as Lily, and Emma says, “You’ve got my back, and I’ve got yours.”

Emma goes to Regina about the pictures, but Regina is unable to assist her and Emma concludes she ought to talk to Sidney about them. Regina is still pretty pissed at Emma. Wouldn’t you be? Emma offers to help Regina, since Emma has magic now, but Regina does not accept her offer. “You’ve never had my back, and you never will,” she tells Emma.

Elsa is sitting in Emma’s car, and she hears Anna calling for her. She exits the car and heads into the forest, follwing the cries for help.

Sid has news for Regina: He has found the Snow Queen’s lair, but before he tells her where it is, he wants to make sure that she does a favor for him in return and frees him from the mirror. “Quid pro quo,” he says. You’re not Hannibal, buddy. He tells Emma if she frees him, he will lead her to the Snow Queen’s lair.

Snow is being totally ridic and demands that they leave a walkie-talkie with Belle so they can check on the baby. They also find that Will Scarlet has escaped from his cell.

Regina is in the forest trying to find the Snow Queen with Sid’s help, and she encounters Emma, who is looking for Elsa. Emma decides that they should stick together, because if they find Elsa, they’ll find the Snow Queen. Regina grudgingly agrees.

In the flashback, Emma and her new BFF swap sob stories about their lives. Emma and Lily have both run away from their foster homes, Emma having done so because she knows she will never be adopted. Lily decides that they ought to break into one of the summer homes and stay there for awhile, and Emma is all for it.

Elsa plunges deeper into the forest, and she thinks she sees Anna across the ravine. She uses her powers to create a staircase so she can cross over the ravine, but she didn’t sing this time. She thinks she sees Anna fall and that it may be too late to save her.

Snow and Charming have been tracking Will for an hour and Snow will not stop whining about how she misses her baby. They are ready to turn around and go home when they encounter Will Scarlet digging a hole in the ground.

Emma is curious about what kind of magic Regina is using, but Regina is evasive about it and she clearly has no patience for Emma. Neither do I, Regina, neither do I. Emma goes on to say that she admires Regina for trying to save Marian, but Regina is like, “Cut the crap because you’re feeling guilty because you ruined my life and you need to learn how to live with it.”

In the flashback, Emma and Lily break into a summer house and spend time playing video games and pigging out on junk food. Emma notices a star-shaped birthmark on the inside of Lily’s wrist. Lily likes to pretend it means something special, and she draws a star on the inside of Emma’s wrist with a marker. They take some selfies with a camera and promise each other that they will always be there for each other, no matter what.

Elsa is still trying to find Anna, and she comes across snow-covered ground. She has reached the Snow Queen’s lair. She hugs what she thinks is Anna, but the Snow Queen announces her presence. Elsa is determined to protect her sister and tells the Snow Queen to leave Anna alone, but when it’s revealed that what Elsa thinks is Anna is really a creation of ice made to look like Anna, the Snow Queen reveals she created the diversion to lure Elsa to her. She uses ice magic to imprison Elsa and the strength of Elsa’s prison increases with Elsa’s fear, which is exactly what the Snow Queen wants for right now.

“What are you going to do?” Elsa demands.

“I’m going to build a snowman,” the Snow Queen replies coolly.

Snow comes on Will Scarlet and has a brief conversation with him, and he discovers that she’s married to the sheriff. Charming, Snow figures, broke Will Scarlet out of jail so that she could have a night out with him and regain her confidence. She “pardons” him, absolving him of his crimes.

Emma and Regina cross over Elsa’s staircase. Emma senses that something isn’t right, and they discover that the Snow Queen has found them. The Snow Queen is pleased to see Sidney, and Regina and Emma wonder why.

In the flashback, the man who had been chasing Lily and Emma has entered the house and has come to take Lily home. It turns out that he’s Lily’s father. Emma is upset to learn that Lily lied to her about being a foster child and concealing that she really had a family all along.

Emma finds out Regina had lied to her about Sidney’s whereabouts and that he has been in Regina’s mirror the entire time. Emma is piiissed. But it gets better: Sid is working or the Snow Queen and led Regina and Emma straight into her trap. The ice staircase starts to break as Emma and Regina hurry to the other side of the ravine.

Elsa conquers her fear and is released from the icy manacles that held her.

Regina and Emma make it to the other side of the ravine, only to find that a giant made of ice is waiting for them, his sword at the ready.

In the flashback, Lily’s dad has called the police, who are ready to take Emma back to the foster home. Lily tries to apologize to Emma and gives Emma her number so they can run away when everything calms down, but Emma asks her why she lied about being a foster kid. Lily admits to Emma that she feels like no one understands her. Lily herself had been orphaned,  but she had been adopted, and she didn’t feel like she belonged with her family. Emma turns away from her, rubbing the marker off of the inside of her wrist.

The ice giant heads into battle with Emma and Regina. The two women team up and use their magic to defeat the giant.

The Snow Queen soon appears and Regina and Emma are ready to confront her, but the Snow Queen was only after one thing, and she uses her magic to take Regina’s mirrored compact, which contains Sidney, away from her. She tries to harm the other two women with her magic, but Elsa arrives just in time and knocks the Snow Queen out cold with a blast of icy air. Elsa is ready to face the Snow Queen and use her own magic when the need calls for it. The Snow Queen is proud of Elsa, who is conquering her fear. Regina is ready to fight even further, but the Snow Queen disappears.

Regina and Emma start arguing about why Regina didn’t tell Emma that she had Sid imprisoned in the mirror, but Elsa urges them to mend their differences because their conflict keeps them from uniting to save Storybrooke from the Snow Queen. Before disappearing, Regina admits she doesn’t want to end the conflict and forgive Emma.

In the Snow Queen’s lair, we see that she has freed Sid from his prison in the mirror. Sid, who has pledged fealty to her, wants to know what he wants of her, but the Snow Queen has no orders for him. All the Snow Queen wanted was Regina’s mirror. She reveals that mirrors are important and can contain bits and pieces of people’s souls. The Snow Queen desires the mirror because of the dark magic within it, and when Sid asks her why, she replies that her purpose is between only her and her reflection. We only know that she is after what she has deserved for so long. The Snow Queen is much more circumspect with sycophantic Sid than Regina has ever been; she does not view him as the confidant the Regina did. This makes the Snow Queen a very dangerous enemy indeed for the citizens of Storybrooke.

The Snow Queen breaks the glass in the compact and fuses it with ice to create a magic mirror of her own. She’s closer to getting what she wants: a family that loves her.

Elsa and Emma are discussing what just occurred as they head home, and Emma is ready to give up on Regina. Elsa reminds Emma that she has been in that position, too, and that she ought not to give up on trying to make amends with Regina.

Emma shows up at Regina’s vault to try and make amends, though Regina demands that she leave. Still, Emma insists on talking, telling her what happened with her friend as a child. She and Regina can sympathize with each other because they have been rejected and have had crummy lives, and she would like to try to be Regina’s friend, even if Regina wants to kill her. Exhausted, Regina admits she doesn’t want to kill Emma. Somehow this leaves Emma optimistic.

At the Charming house, Snow tells Charming that she tracked Will Scarlet down and pardoned him, just as Charming planned, but Charming has no clue what she is talking about. They conclude that he escaped on his own and simply played along, and that Will earned his “pardon” by doing that.

Emma is alone and Hook comes by, bringing her some rum. She and Hook decide to go through the box containing Emma’s childhood things. They find different mementos, including the selfies she took with Lily. Emma finds a video camera in the box and plays the video. It’s of Emma and Lily. Another video begins to play, and they see the Snow Queen on the video. Somehow she knows Emma, but Emma doesn’t know her.

And that’s it for this week. This episode was a little boring. Hopefully next week’s has more going on, though the old Regina was back in this episode. We need to see more of her!

4 replies on “New Show Recap: Once Upon a Time, Episode 4×05, “Breaking Glass””

I hated everyone in this episode. Regina was whiny, Emma was needy, and Snow and Charming were dumb as rocks. Also, Regina. Get over yourself girl. I love you. I love you with my whole heart. You and Robert Carlisle are two beautiful bright spots in what is an otherwise increasingly mediocre piece of television. BUT. The character? The character is probably beyond redemption. I mean, she committed the crimes of battery, rape, mass murder, stalking, child endangerment…you name it, she’s done it. It’s okay. Just let her be who she is. Quit trying to be like, BUT SHE’S HURTING. Yeah, well, we’re all hurting. But we don’t gaslight our children about it, DO WE??

Also, Storybrooke is in Maine, right? I know they’re fairy tale characters, but they still have to abide by the Constitution. “When I say so,” is not how habeas corpus works, Emma. I mean, you’ve only ever lived here and you went through the prison system. You should be relatively aware of how the law works, right?

I don’t know. Maybe because the town technically doesn’t exist, Emma doesn’t have to follow the laws of the U.S. It’s like how Snow is mayor now just because some of the townspeople wanted her to be. That’s a plot hole they’re not addressing.

My sister and I were discussing some of this during a visit this evening, and she isn’t thrilled with the Frozen storyline either because they’re focusing too much in that instead of the effects of the timeline change. They also cheaped out on the costumes. They would have been better off using more of a flowing, empire style gown for Elsa’s costume, which would have not only allowed for the character’s ease of movement (as we saw in the Frozen film), but also could be embellished to show her rank. Or they should have taken more hints from Reign, which for all its corniness has some really great costumes.

I have a lot of issues with Emma and the Charmings and all of this “doing good” stuff. Snow and Charming are supposedly all goody-goody, but they are actually pretty selfish people in that they choose to do whatever it is that will make them feel like they’re good people. They don’t do things for the greater good. They have Ned Stark Syndrome.

Apparently the whole Snow Queen storyline may have something to do with Maleficent, who will have a lot to do with the storyline in the next half of the season. Per what I have read on I09.

I really wish they would focus more on the timeline change and what Rumpel might know, because he certainly knows something. And the sorcerer’s hat. Who is the sorcerer? My bets are on Merlin or Prospero, but most likely Merlin. I also would not be surprised to see some more things featuring OUAT in Wonderland, and maybe even more from the Land Without Color. Personally, I would like to see them use something from H. G. Wells’s The Time Machine and venture out of the Disney box for a bit.

But watch. Next thing you know, they’ll bring in vampires. Because a show can’t jump the shark without introducing vampires.

I think you really hit on what’s bugging me about this season. They have all these opportunities (sorcerer, What Rumple Knew, OUATIW, etc) and instead the writers keep going, “but we have FRO-OZEN!” (Say it like Oprah. Out loud. It’s fun.) I get that in the first season, they were supposed to be exploring the consequences to their actions from the Enchanted Forest, but ever since then, they haven’t had to face ANY consequences, which really makes the viewer feel like our heroes always win (even though they are often incompetent) and never face any consequences for their actions, no matter how often we hear about “magic having a price.” It feels very inauthentic.

And the costumes in this show are typically awful. I mean, their costuming choices for Snow are typically, “We ran out of money again. Put Snow in a curtain with a Peter Pan collar on it. And maybe an ugly old lady pin. Yeah. Nobody will notice it’s not real clothes.”

These are the same people who wrote for Lost, and Lost had the same issues with the way things were written. They would start out with a lot of plot points and not resolve them that well because they would focus on one or two things.

As for Snow’s costumes, Ginnifer Goodwin had a baby while the show was on break, and maybe they had to leave room for Snow’s costumes to be altered because they were unsure of what her size would be when the show started filming again.

And no, Snow and Charming and even Emma never learn from the things they do. The only characters who show any signs of complexity are Rumpel, Regina, Hook, and Robin Hood. Also, Snow and Charming must be pretty lousy rulers since they don’t rule based on what’s good for their people, but based on what they think is good and will make them seem like good people.

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