Once Upon A Time: “Tallahassee”Posted: November 5, 2012
This was an important episode of Once Upon A Time because we were finally given our first glimpse into Emma (Jennifer Morrison)’s back story. At first I really didn’t like it then I thought about it more and it was OK. The audience was left with so much time to come up with her back story themselves that I don’t know if I would have given an A+ to anything. Regardless, the back story was still good as was the rest of the episode.
In the Fairytale World, Emma, Snow (Ginnifer Goodwin), Mulan (Jamie Chung) and Aurora (Sarah Bolger) are led to the beanstalk by Hook (Colin O’Donoghue). There is a magical compass at the top of bean stock that will help Emma and Snow get home. They just have to climb the enchanted beanstalk, get past the giant, find Cora, steal the magic dust from her and then find a way home. Emma and Snow already think Hook is playing them, now Mulan and Aurora agree. Hook only has two counter spells that will allow someone to climb the beanstalk. After a short argument, Emma is elected to go.
Because the theme of this episode is Emma’s trust issues, she takes Mulan aside to tell her that she doesn’t trust Hook. Emma tells her that if she isn’t back in 10 hours to cut down the beanstalk and get Snow home. Emma then starts up the bean stock with Hook, who spends a large part of the time flirting with Emma and telling her she has trust issues.
We are then thrown to 11 years into the past in Portland and we see a young Emma breaking into the yellow bug. She starts to drive it off only to realize that someone has already stolen it and is hiding in the back seat. They bond over tricking a cop into not arresting them. The someone is Neal or “Mysterious Man” from the first episode of the season, played by Michael Raymond-James. They then start dating, robbing convenient stores and living in the yellow bug. They do that for a while then decided to move to Tallahassee and settle down.
Young Emma’s appearance is one of the major thing that bumped this episode’s grade down. She just looked too much like Taylor Swift. It was the hipster glasses and the blonde pony tail and the red lipstick. Personality-wise she just seemed like a younger, not as damaged Emma. She starts dating Neil and they are in love, so her seeming like this optimistic, happy person might be because of that. At first I hated it, then I thought about it more and I realized it is the same as what the show did with young Regina. This is the character way before they became the character we know.
Back in the Fairytale World, Hook and Emma make it to the top of the beanstalk. They are able to work together to knock out the giant, played by Jorge Garcia, and look for the compass.
At the bottom of the beanstalk, Aurora and Snow have a bonding moment over the side effects of sleeping curses. Aurora said every time she tries to sleep she has terrible nightmares. Snow said she did too and tells her she will watch over her. A little later on, Aurora has a nightmare about being in a red room with flaming curtains. She said there was a boy in the room that kept staring at her. In the last scene of the episode, Henry (Jared Gilmore) tells Charming (Josh Dallas) that he had the same dream but a girl was staring at him.
Back at the top, the giant watches up. Emma is able to trap him alone after Hook gets buried in falling rocks. The giant gives the compass to Emma after she doesn’t kill him. He also shows her a secret way out and promises to keep Hook captive for a while. Hook gets mad at Emma for not trusting him.
Young Emma has been more careful in her criminal behavior than Neil. He realizes that the cops are after him because he stole a bunch of really expensive watches. He and Emma decided to get the watches, sell them and move to Tallahassee. Emma gets them out of the locker in the train station and Neil goes off to sell them. But, he is tackled by some guy in an alley. That guy ends up being August (Eion Bailey) and tells Neil about Emma being the savor. August shows Neil what is in his wooden box and he quickly believes the whole story. August says he needs to leave Emma so she can fulfill her destiny.
Neil calls the cops and tells them about the watches, one of which Emma still has. She is arrested and sentenced to 11 months in jail in Phoenix for some reason. I feel like some of the details in this story were shaky. Neil gives the yellow bug and $20,000 to August and tells him to make sure Emma gets them when she gets out. August also tells Neil that he will send him a postcard if anything changes.
Back in the Fairytale Word, the 10 hour time limit is up and Mulan walks over to the beanstalk with her sword. She tells Snow and Aurora that this is what Emma wanted. Yeah, Snow wasn’t going to hear that. She body slams Mulan and holds her down while yelling that nobody is going to put her daughter in danger. Luckily, for Mulan, Emma appears out of the beanstalk. Snow is relieved and tells Emma that the only way they go back is together.
Even though this episode was called Tallahasse, we still have no idea why Emma spent two years in Tallahassee I always thought that would be where Henry’s father was from, but Emma took a pregnancy test while in jail and Neil is Henry’s father. So, it wasn’t the best episode but there is still a lot of back story yet to be explained.