Once Upon a Time recap: The Woods Are Lovely, Dark, And Deep

Snow and Charming's backstory is revealed as Mary Margaret searches for her John Doe
Ep. 03 | Aired Nov 6, 2011

SAY THAT AGAIN, KID? Emma (Jennifer Morrison) is finally starting to realize that this whole thing goes a lot deeper than she originally thought.

CHRIS HELCERMANAS-BENGE

They really do have miles to go before they sleep at this point. Dark and twisted miles, down that dank and nasty Troll Road. This week's Once Upon A Time continued down its fortunate path of of getting better each week, giving us a healthy mix of mythology (badass Snow White!) and plot-of-the-week fun. Ginnifer Goodwin stood out as both the weepy-but-determined Mary Margaret and the headstrong Snow White, and I like the new roommate combination of Mary Margaret and Emma. Both women are fiercely loving but ultimately lost, and their riddled-with-secrets relationship is the one I'm most interested in at this point. Henry, former son of Don Draper, is undoubtedly cute, but his unwavering optimism is best in smaller doses. Also, the Fairytale identity of Sheriff Graham, the British apparently Irish hipster Sheriff was revealed. Well, it was strongly hinted at.

As we all turned back our clocks to make room for more sunlight, Time turned back its clock to give us a peek at the strange courtship of Charming and Snow. It began in the woods of Fairytale, where Charming was struggling to entertain his prissy, dour fiancee during a particularly unpleasant carriage road trip. "I told you the Troll Road would have been quicker," she whined. What's wrong with taking the scenic route, lady? Before we had time to question what Charming was doing with the half-wit blondie, a tree fell, blocking their path. Blondie didn't like the looks of this. Charming went out to investigate -- nothing. But then, all of a sudden, there was Snow, decked out to the nines in her best Robin Hood attire. She swept in and stole a pouch, (while Blondie sat in terror, completely useless) and even managed to deck Charming before galloping off into the sunset with the president's rubies safely in tow. "Wherever you are, I will find you!" Charming shouted after her. She looked back at him with a sweet knowing smile that could only mean, "You better!"

How was that for a meet cute? I liked it. I think it's important to see Snow White as more than your average "Someday My Prince Will Come" princess. This is, after all, a family show, and giving Snow a more post-women's-lib-friendly persona is crucial, since she will be a role model for young girls watching. She doesn't need to be the next Buffy, but a feisty temperament, good head on her shoulders, and sense of adventure will do just fine.

Over in Storybrooke, however, Mary Margaret Blanchard struggled to hold on to Snow's passionate optimism. She took a chance on a late-night date with Dr. Wales, played by David Anders. Anders is best known for playing the double-crossing Sark on Alias, the scheming John Gilbert on The Vampire Diaries, and the immortal evil swordsman Adam on Heroes. When he shows up on TV, you know there is going to be trouble. And trouble there was -- Wales was far more interested in Ruby's waitressing backside than in Mary Margaret's ramblings on true love and marriage.

Mary Margaret left the date early, as the toll of her painfully unsuccessful romantic life was starting to show on her face. On her way home she ran into Emma, now homeless, sitting in her car on one of Storybrooke's abandoned streets. You know this town is frozen in time when she's searching for an apartment in the newspaper. Storybrooke is not an option on Craigslist, apparently. Emma offered her condolences regarding the date from hell (he didn't even pay!), and Mary Margaret was simply thrilled that Emma was staying in town to be with Henry. She was now starting to trust her, so she offered up her spare room as a solution to Emma's unfortunate real estate situation. Emma turned her down, supposedly because she doesn't do well with roommates, but her mannerisms around Ms. Blanchard suggest that she might be turning a corner on the whole curse thing. Also, what 28-year-old woman wants to live with her mom?

NEXT: Good story. Tell it again...

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