Back in September 2015, I did the 30 Day Once Ypon a Time Challenge. In an effort to clean this blog up a little bit, I have edited and amalgamated all my answers into one post. While some of my opinions have changed in the last five years, I did not change any of the answers.
Favourite Male Character
I have loved Rumpelstiltskin since the very first episode. When I started watching OUAT, I knew nothing about it other than the little synopsis that they put for it on Netflix. So when I saw Robert Carlyle’s name come up as a member of the cast, I was so excited. But as the first episode went on, and there was no Robert Carlyle, I was wondering who on Earth he could be playing.
That was, until Snow suggested going to see Rumpelstiltskin, at which point I just thought, “If Robert Carlyle is playing Rumpelstiltskin, then that would just be the best”. And so it was the best. From that very first moment (helped on by the fact that Rumpel in the Enchanted Forest is so deliciously camp it borders on the ridiculous) I have held a massive bias in favour of Rumpelstiltskin.
Favourite Female Character
Cruella De Vil
I’m not sure what first drew me to Cruella, but I definitely think she has one of the cleverer adaptations of her character, even though 101 Dalmatians is certainly not one of my favourite Disney movies. When her magical power to control animals was revealed, and it was based on her cigarette smoke from the movie, I thought it was a really clever way of incorporating the original character into the show.
Mostly, I think I love her because of her posh voice and the fact that she calls everyone ‘Darling’. Out of everyone who has actually died in this show (and stayed dead, because OUAT suffers from the Marvel problem of killing-off-but-not-actually-killing-off its main characters) her death affected me the most. I really wanted them to find a way for her to come back, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen, unless she makes an appearance in one of the flashbacks (and that won’t actually mean that she’s back back… if you know what I mean…).
Least Favourite Male Character
Don’t get me wrong: I love Baelfire. But I kind of see Bae and Neal as two different people. There certainly are a lot of differences between them, even when he is reunited with his father. When Neal gets brought back into his old life, he changes dramatically, and how he acts with his father is a lot different than how he acts with Tamara, when he was still being Neal. In the latter half of series two, it’s almost as though the two different sides of himself – the Bae side and the Neal side – are at odds with one another, existing in the same body but never at the same time.
Least Favourite Female Character
Blue Fairy/Mother Superior
I once saw someone say on Tumblr that every Harry Potter fan gets to the stage where they realise that Dumbledore was actually an incredibly immoral character, who manipulated those around him in order to get what he wanted – to achieve the ‘greater good’.
My feelings towards the Blue Fairy are exactly the same as they are towards Dumbledore. The only difference is, because Harry Potter is over, we know what his endgame was. We understand his motivations throughout the entire series, whereas with Blue, her ultimate intentions are still unknown. There are several theories I’ve seen on the Internet about how Blue could actually be a villain in the grand scheme of things – or at least a more malevolent power than is immediately obvious. That also seems to be the way that they’re going with the OUAT Virtual Series.
There just seems to be something… iffy… about the Blue Fairy, and I can’t quite put my finger on what it is yet.
Technically, it’s Cruella, but as I’ve already said her, I’m gonna have to go with Cora. She’s certainly one of the most successful villains in the series (she did, after all, get Regina to the throne). Plus, she’s one of the more developed villains, especially with her backstory as the miller’s daughter and her love affair with Rumpel.
When Cora doesn’t run away with Rumpel (The Miller’s Daughter)
Everything about this scene is amazing. For one, it has my favourite character and my favourite villain, but it’s probably one of the most feelsy scenes in the entire series. While I don’t ship Golden Heart in Storybrooke, in the Enchanted Forest, you only need this scene to see how you can’t ignore it. Rumpel gets his heart broken for the second time, and loses out on the chance to have another child (I also wrote a fanfiction exploring this). You can see the pain in his eyes when he asks whose heart is in the box, and I just felt so sorry for him that he was going to lose everything he had with Cora.
That being said, I’m also glad it happened, because then Rumbelle can happen. And Rumbelle is the best. As we shall see…
Skin Deep is one of my favourite episodes. I certainly wasn’t expecting a romantic storyline for Rumpel, especially so late in the series, but I’m so glad they put one in. I’m less happy that they then spent the better part of three series trying to keep them apart throughout a number of irritating ways, but feels are so important in keeping people watching.
On the other hand, I’m not sure when I started shipping the crap out of Captain Swan. Out of all of the series so far, I think series 4 is my favourite, and there are definitely some strong Captain Swan moments in there. Especially in White Out, which I would say is my favourite episode out of them all. That being said, I think it was at some point during the Zelena arc that I started rooting for the two of them to get together, but I’m not sure exactly when.
Hook and Bae
I think I remember these two having a much bigger bromance that they actually did in the show (when I rewatched …And Straight on ‘Til Morning, I definitely remember thinking, “Oh… is that it?”) but I still think what we’re given is really great. Even if things do get incredibly awkward during the Peter Pan arc…
All of the times Rumpel and Belle got separated
There are far too many of these. So far, I think they’ve been separated in: Skin Deep, The Outsider, Lacey, …And Straight on ‘Til Morning, Going Home, Heroes and Villains, and Operation Mongoose Part 2. That’s so many times! What’s up with that?
I’m not sure which of these separations I think was the saddest, because they were all pretty sad when I first watched them. Probably The Outsider and Heroes and Villains were the worst; the former because Belle forgot who she was, and so the loss was completely one-sided, and the latter because it didn’t come about through circumstance, but through a decision made by Belle herself.
I suppose the one in Going Home was pretty sad, because it seemed so final, but I didn’t really believe that they would kill Rumpel off, especially in the middle of the series, since they have gone out of their way to save characters who are a lot less important to the plot than Rumpel. Plus, I binge-watched the series, and Robert Carlyle’s name came up at the beginning of the next episode, so I knew he was coming back.
“Let’s just say we bury the hatchet”
“Yes, but why not in your skull?”Snow Drifts
I think this is down to Robert Carlyle and Colin O’Donoghue’s acting. Rumpel is being wonderfully camp, as always, and the way Hook’s face just falls after Rumpel’s quip always makes me laugh.
Favourite Badass Scene
Mr Gold’s cane (Darkness on the Edge of Town)/Henry breaking the quill (Operation Mongoose Part 2)
I actually felt like cheering upon Mr Gold’s return to Storybrooke after his exile. But what made it even better was his return to a place with magic, and a place where he no longer needed to use a cane. When he was in New York, he spent all his time hobbling around on his bad ankle, but he saunters back into Storybrooke, swinging his cane as soon as he’s across the town line. The whole thing is so smooth, and I absolutely loved it.
That being said, series 4 is also where Henry starts to come into his own, certainly (I think) more than in the other series. He becomes an actual part of the plot rather than something just to keep things moving, which we see even more when he becomes the Author once Isaac has been fired. When he breaks the quill so that he can’t be tempted to change things to meet his own ends, it reminded me of when Harry snapped the Elder Wand (even though in the context of Harry Potter, that was really annoying). It shows just how much Henry’s character has developed.
Rumbelle (…And Straight on ‘Til Morning)
As I’ve said before, it’s ridiculous how many times Rumpel and Belle get separated over the course of the series. Series two was horrible because they were actually with each other the whole time, separated only by Belle’s amnesia. When she finally gets her memories back, and doesn’t even give herself time to finish saying his name before she kisses him, it was just so sweet.
Do you want the Evil Queen to get her happy ending?
I was talking with one of my friends about Regina’s character development, and we both decided that she is the character about whom our opinions had changed the most over the course of the series. By the end of series four, it just gets so frustrating that nothing seems to work out in her favour – even in Isaac’s alternate reality, when heroes and villains have been swapped and the happy endings have been given to the bad guys. It seems that, by deciding to switch from being a villain to trying to be a hero, she ends up getting the worst of both worlds and the best of neither. Which is made even more irritating seeing as Hook did the same thing, and he seems to be doing alright. Regina deserves a break.
Your Favourite Unexpected Moment
When Hook stabbed Gold (The Queen is Dead)
I so did not see this coming, and it provided a massive dose of hurt/comfort which I absolutely adore in my fiction. Nothing is better than having a major threat to the life of your favourite character… right?
Which side are you on – good or evil?
It’s more complicated than that
More than anything, I think OUAT is great at showing that no one is black and white in their morals and intentions. I was rewatching Unforgiven, and my friend who hadn’t seen the show before was in the room. When Snow confesses to stealing Maleficent’s baby in order to place the potential darkness within Emma into Maleficent’s unborn child, his immediate reaction was to say, “Wow, so no one’s really good in this?”
Stories of villain redemption and heroes doing terrible things make it difficult to see where the lines of good and evil truly lie. I’d say that I would like Emma to be victorious in the end, and for everything to work out alright – but what does that even mean? In series two, that meant that Hook had to be stopped, which in itself was at odds with the necessity in series one for Rumpel to be stopped, and by series four, it’s become the case that neither of them have to be stopped. On the contrary, getting rid of either one of them might mean that Emma fails in whatever it is that she needs to end up doing. It’s all very confusing, but that’s part of what makes it so interesting.
Queen Eva (The Queen is Dead)
Bearing in mind the top of Queen Eva’s dress is really irritating (kind of looks like castle battlements), the rest of that outfit is gorgeous. It’s a lovely shade of red, and the shoes and adorable. Although, admittedly, when I saw that she was wearing red shoes, I did kind of have a moment where I thought that Dorothy was Snow’s mother, which would have been really interesting.
Favourite Episode of Season 1
I love Rumbelle. What can I say? It’s the episode where we see another side to Rumpel’s character, and introduces Beauty and the Beast into the OUAT canon without actually having to rely too much on the movie.
He’s really good at facial expressions; he does little twitches and looks really well and it allows for some deep insight into Hook’s character.
As I’ve said before, Frozen is the only movie incorporated into OUAT which hasn’t been changed at all, and as a result, the characters are based entirely and directly on how they are in the movie. There are no tweaks to how they’re supposed to act. That being said, Elizabeth Lail is Anna. She is Anna if Frozen had been a live-action movie. She captures the essence of the character perfectly, in every single way.
“You have survived your entire lives without light bulbs! Buy a flashlight!”White Out
I’m not a massive fan of Mary Margaret, but this made me laugh so much. It’s entirely true, and it’s nice to see her lose it sometimes. Especially when the people around her are being so irritating.
We don’t have a lot of backstory for some of the more minor characters (and as much as I don’t want this to be the case, Ruby is definitely a minor character, especially as she hasn’t been in it since series three, and even then it was only really in the background), but what we find out about Ruby in the Enchanted Forest – especially in series two – brings so much depth to her character. In Red-Handed, I wasn’t expecting Ruby to be the werewolf, especially after they set it up to make it look like it was Peter. But it’s the backstory we get in Child of the Moon that makes her my pick for this question.
Maybe it’s because of how the character of Remus Lupin has changed our attitudes towards werewolves – or, at least, has made us aware of how lycanthropy can be used as a metaphor for real-life social exclusion – but when Ruby not only finds a pack of wolves who can give her the acceptance that she has longed for for so long, but also her mother who she thought was dead, it shows just how lonely Ruby must have been ever since she found out the truth about herself. She’s with the pack for less than a week, and yet by the end of it, she still embraces the wolf side of herself for its intrinsic value, rather than – like in the later flashbacks of series one – as a means to an end and to help Snow in her quest to get her kingdom back.
Something that you want to see/find out that hasn’t been revealed yet
The Twelve Dancing Princesses
When I first found this challenge and was looking through the questions, I was going to put Camelot for this. They’ve been setting up an Arthurian legend story since series two, and I have been so excited for it ever since. However, since that’s now been confirmed as happening really soon in Operation Mongoose Part 2, I change my answer to The Twelve Dancing Princesses, even though I’m not entirely sure how they could incorporate that story into OUAT.
As for stuff that hasn’t been revealed yet, there are so many plot points which they have teased and have yet to be explained that I’m not sure I could even remember them all to include them, let alone expect any of you to sit through a post that long.
Any prop you could take from the set
This was one of the most difficult questions, because there are a lot of props. But Jefferson is one of my favourite characters, and his hat is certainly one of the most practical magical objects in the series. Not to mention it’s rather dashing.
If you could be anyone from Storybrooke or the Enchanted Forest, who would it be?
Katherine Nolan seems to be a character who doesn’t have masses to do with the main plot, especially once magic has been brought to Storybrooke. Granted, she goes through some horrific stuff in series one, but after that, she seems to find happiness with her fiancé from the Enchanted Forest, and only appears in the background. I’d much rather be her than getting in the thick of things.
Favourite Character Entrance
Zelena (New York Serenade)
New York Serenade is one of my favourite episodes, and Zelena’s entrance at the end had me very excited. That the entrance of the Wicked Witch of the West is itself a reference to the musical which changed the perception of her character for fans was inspired. It’s just a shame that they kept pulling on the ‘wicked’ threat throughout the series, which kind of put a dampener on the initial declaration.
Character you’d like to see more of
Jefferson/Nova (Sister Astrid)
It’s kind of implied that Jefferson has got his happy ending, having been reunited with his daughter, but there are still some things which are yet to be explained, especially since the second curse happened. What happened to him and his daughter when everyone was sent back to the Enchanted Forest? Did they get caught up in the second curse? Did they go to Wonderland? If not, how come no one has ever tried to use his hat to skip through realms again? Will they ever need to again? Aside from that, he could make appearances in flashbacks, because we still don’t know what happened to his wife, nor how he began working for Rumpelstiltskin to the extent that he was actually willing to work with him to use Frankenstein to deceive Regina. I feel that there are a lot of things which need to be revealed about Jefferson’s character, and it would be interesting to see some of these questions answered.
I can’t remember the last time we saw Nova. In series one, her forbidden affair with Dreamy was a rather significant plot point, but they don’t seem to have developed it. Are they together? Did they get their happy ending? Grumpy has been in the show since then, but they have made no reference to him being with Astrid at all. Plus, she’s such an interesting character, and it would be cool to find out more about the fairies in general, which can’t really be done without developing Nova more.
Mr Gold’s shop
It’s kind of a plot device, but it’s very cool. He has everything anyone could possibly need in there, plus it’s the main haunt of my favourite character. We know when we’re in Gold’s shop that Gold is going to be there, and as a result, some of the best scenes have happened there.
Storybrooke or the Enchanted Forest?
To justify this choice, I look no further than what the Author himself said about the Enchanted Forest in Operation Mongoose Part 2: “It’s cold, there’s no running water, and things are always trying to kill you”.
Favourite Fairytale? Did you like the OUAT version?
The Twelve Dancing Princesses/Little Bo Peep
The Twelve Dancing Princesses is my favourite fairytale, which is why I would like to have it in the show. However, my favourite adaptation of a fairytale is that of Little Bo Peep in White Out. That she makes up a flock of actual people is a very interesting adaptation, and gives the fluffy (pardon the pun) original story a OUAT dark quality.
What got you interested in OUAT?
I’m not entirely sure. It’s definitely something that would have attracted me anyway, especially when I saw it on Netflix – after all, I am a massive fantasy fan. But what I think first put it on my radar was when Carrie Hope Fletcher said that she was obsessed with it, and was binge-watching it despite having virtually no time in which to do so. Ultimately it came down to me needing something to watch while I did my ironing, seeing it on my Netflix, and thinking “I’ll start watching that”, and after that, I was hooked. (Pardon the pun.)