ONCE UPON A TIME: Much Ado About a Dunce Cap (S5: E9 Recap)

(Please note: This is the recap for Once’s Episode 9: “The Bear King”. To read the recap of Episode 8: “Birth” click here.)

Sometimes life interferes with art, and that art, must in turn, adapt itself to life, or perish. Sometimes that adaptation process leads to better, more innovative, art. And sometimes the adaptation process leads to . . . well . . . “The Bear King.”

This is not to say that “The Bear King” was a terrible episode of Once. I for one, have seen many worse episodes of the series . . . like that random black and white one about Dr. Whale / Frankenstein, for example.

dr whale

Instead, I am merely noting that, the American Music Awards’ upcoming and inevitable preemption of next week’s Once, naturally resulted in ABC having one less week to air a full order of episodes. And this, in turn, resulted in the showrunners’ decision to offer up an immediate follow-up to the series’ landmark episode “Birth” that had significantly less impact on season 5’s main storytelling arc than I suspect it would have, had the episode aired next week, as originally intended.

Let’s review, shall we?

You Hat Me at Hello


Once upon a time, in the Kingdom of DunBroch (where being a ginger head is a dominant trait, and everyone has a nearly incomprehensible Scottish accent) Merida’s daddy, then-King Fergus, made a deal with a witch in exchange for a stupid-looking helmet, which was supposed to make Daddy’s clansman like him enough to die horribly painful deaths in battle on his behalf.


The King’s receipt of a Stupid Hat that makes him popular, and everyone else around him dumb and suicidal, couldn’t have happened at a better time. After all, his kingdom is about to go to war. Also his daughter, Merida, is about to fight in her very first battle.

The King hires Mulan to help Merida learn how to fight, probably because the Kung Fu Panda and Buzz Lightyear were busy that day.

kung_fu_panda_2_2011_hd-HD Buzz-Lightyear-Toy-Story1


On the first day of war, Mulan distracts Merida with training on the King’s instructions, because the King doesn’t want his daughter to die for his popular ginger ass. As a result Merida witnesses from afar, but isn’t able to prevent, her father’s untimely demise at the hand of a masked warrior, who stabs him in the gut, and steals his Stupid Hat right off his dead head.

It’s kind of heart-wrenching actually. So heart-wrenching that I can’t make snarky jokes about it. So instead, enjoy this adorable picture of a basket of puppies . . .


The Bear Necessities

That was then, this is now . . .

In present day, Merida is about to be crowned Queen of DunBroch. But then that witch from the beginning of the episode crashes the coronation, and tells Merida, she needs to return her the Stupid Hat, or all the gingers and people with bad Scottish accents in her kingdom will get turned into bears. . . quite possibly even the cute cartoon bears with the toilet paper on their butts from the Charmin commercials.

A fate worse than death!

A fate worse than death!

Merida finds her old pal Mulan to ask her for help finding the Stupid Hat. But Mulan isn’t in a very helpful mood, due to #LesbianHeartbreak.

felt aobut heartbreak

Soon after, Merida herself, experiences a setback, when she begins to doubt her family legacy, and by extension, her own ability to lead her kingdom, as a result of her father being dumb enough to think that wearing Stupid Hat would make him popular with a bunch of dudes just because some old lady told him it was so. This revelation freaks out Merida so much, that she actually offers up the ability to rule her kingdom to those three douchebags she almost married during the movie Brave, if they manage to find the Stupid Hat before she does.

Brave (2012) weird guys

“Stupid Hats are our specialty!”

But then Mulan meets up with Erstwhile Werewolf Red, who is back in the Enchanted Forest due to “feeling different than other women,” and “not fitting in,” and suddenly #LesbianHeartbreak Mulan is feeling #hopefulandhorny. And so, with Sexy Red in toe, Mulan leads the charge in finding the Stupid Hat that Merida needs, in order to save her kingdom from becoming #Bear-yUnhappy.

hook and red hook and red 2

Also searching for the Stupid Hat are King Arthur and Wicked Witch Zelena, aka Mr. and Mrs. The Worst. King Arthur wants the hat because, apparently, spraying his kingdom with Stepford Doofus dust wasn’t enough to secure their loyalty, because he’s just that terrible and inherently unpopular of a person. Zelena wants the Stupid Hat because she’s having a really bad hair day today.

No Fair! Zelena is already wearing a stupid hat. She can’t have two!

Red uses her wolfy sense of smell to ascertain that Arthur was actually the guy who killed Merida’s dad back in the day, which means he should currently be the proud owner of the Stupid Hat, which, as we already know, he isn’t.

When Red, Mulan and Merida confront Arthur, he admits that the Stupid Hat Arthur pried from King Fergus’ dead head was actually a fake Stupid Hat. (Don’t get me wrong, it was still a STUPID Hat, it just wasn’t the same Stupid Hat that had the power to make you popular.)

found hat

You know what this means don’t you? Merida’s dad, King Fergus, was a good ginger! Sure, he wore Stupid Hats, and spoke with an incomprehensible Scottish accent, but he didn’t use either of those things to become popular, and make his kingdom members die for him. They were dumb enough to do that all on their own, all dunce caps aside!

Merida is elated! Her dad is a ginger hero! Also, she didn’t have to lose her kingdom to those three douchebags she almost married. In fact, they (and everybody else in town) like her now, because she was willing to give up being Queen to save the rest of the kingdom from being turned into bears by an old witch. So, Merida is popular now. Also, she has the Stupid Hat. She found it in the water, right where her dad buried it right before she died.

Note: It is currently unclear whether: (1) Merida’s getting the Stupid Hat that makes you popular and 2)Merida actually becomes popular are related. But I think we are supposed to think they are entirely coincidental because “morals” and because “impressionable kids are watching.”

very pop

You can check out the rest of this recap HERE.

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ONCE UPON A TIME: The Night is Full of Dark Ones and Terrors (S5: E8 Recap)


“Becoming the Dark One has made me so much better at miming. Check it out. I’m in a box!”

Here’s a philosophical question to ponder: if someone is an Asshole, but they don’t know they are an Asshole, does that free them from the usual trappings of Asshole-ism? This week’s first of a two-part special (though the second episode frustratingly had absolutely nothing to do with the first), poses this very question, when we learn that Emma, in a quest to save her lover Captain Hook’s life, made him into her Dark One Twin Brother (um, incest much?). The “Dark Swan” accomplished this, while, simultaneously, fully succumbing to the trademark bad hair and weird eyebrows that she’d been assiduously avoiding throughout an entire season of flashbacks.

sword looker

Emma (based on her tragic makeover, mostly) knew full well that she had become a Super Asshole and behaved as such. But Hook (who used to be kind of an asshole back in the day), had no clue he’d been converted into a Super Asshole (i.e. no tragic makeover for him), and, as a result, acted like a pretty nice guy, up until the moment he learned of his Assholeism.

hook pel

Extend that logic, and it is entirely possible that the only reason Emma’s been acting so sh*tty all season, is that she’s really pissed off about her white old lady bun and having to sport those wacky evil eyebrows.

dark one

Confused? Intrigued? Feeling like an evil asshole, due to some poor fashion choices you might have made recently?

However you happen to be feeling, let’s review shall we?

(I say we change things up, and start our recap in present day, this time around. This way, we can experience our Big Assholey Reveal at the same time Hook experiences it, by looking inside that fateful dreamcatcher at the same time he does.)

You Can’t Handle the Truth!

frat boys

When the episode begins, our boys are back in town! Charming, Hook and Robin Hood, a.k.a. The Frat Boys of Storybrooke, are banding together to sniff out that little weasel Arthur, who is hanging out in his stupid tent with his Stepford Doofus wife. First, they confront him about the whole “trying to burn the mushroom that makes you talk to wizards” thing. Then, they ask him about Nimue. When Arthur is able to offer no helpful information about either, the Fratboys of Storybrooke chase Arthur down, in hopes of beating the ever loving crap out of him, something most fans of the show have wanted to do since this douchebag first appeared on screen.

arthur 1

Hook gets into a particularly sexy and homoerotic tussle with King Arthur. But when he starts to lose the battle, Dark One Emma swoops in to rescue her boyfriend’s tight leather pants-wearing ass. “That was really nice of you, Emma,” Hook offers appreciatively. “I’m thinking maybe you aren’t as big of as Asshole as you want us all to think you are.”

dark one

“Nope. I’m still a huge Asshole. I just didn’t want to see your sexy body bruised by stupid Arthur and his stupider sword play games, because he is clearly the worst, ” Emma responds dismissively.

“Tell me now, Emma! Tell me why you became a huge Asshole!” Hook demands.

why i

Then comes the weird moment in the episode, where Emma Swan literally morphs into Jack Nicholson’s character from A Few Good Men. In fact, I’m pretty sure she actually says the words, “YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH,” making the exact same angrily constipated facial expressions Jack did when he uttered that same iconic line. (Which, I guess, makes Captain Hook our Tom Cruise?)

Don’t believe me? See for yourself.



So, there you have it, folks. Jack Nicholson ordered the Code Red on William Santiago, and Emma Swan turned into a Super Asshole just for her boyfriend. And as much as I adore Captain Swan, and all their eternal broody sexiness, I’m pretty sure I just set the feminist movement back about 50 years by typing that last sentence.

Captain Hook: Detective of Love!

what to see

“I see London. I see France. Dark Ones don’t wear any underpants . . . because they are too binding.”

Fully intrigued by Emma’s Dark One ability to occasionally turn into the greatest actors of all time, and also by the shocking and admittedly ego boosting revelation that he may be entirely responsible for his girlfriend’s Assholeyness, Captain Hook goes on a mission to find out what happened in Camelot that turned Emma into someone who sometimes talks like Jack Nicholson, wears an old lady bun, and has weird eyebrows.

Hook decides to seek his erstwhile enemy Rumpel’s advice on this, because the former Dark One just so happens to be the resident expert on Love and Assholeism. “Anyone who willingly wears eyebrows like that must be feeling super guilty about something. Find out why Emma feels guilty, and you’ll find out the mystery to why she’s such an asshole,” Rumpel advises sagely.


“Or I could just become Bella Swan and keep trying to kill myself, so my girlfriend (who I guess would be the Vampire Edward in this scenario) will have to save me and hang out with me, and maybe then she’ll tell me why she’s such an Asshole,” Hook explains excitedly.

depression thing get it

“That wasn’t what I meant,” Rumpel cautions. “Actually I don’t think that suicide attempts are a healthy way to . . .”

“Thanks Rumpel, you’re the greatest,” Hook exclaims excitedly, as he runs to go jump off a building, because making good life choices is for pussies and unattractive people.

Emma saves Hook from dying again. And Hook shows his extreme gratitude for this selfless act by . . . asking Emma once again why she’s such an Asshole. Real suave, Hook!

Hook quickly recovers from his faux pas though, by showing Emma his impressive collection of man jewelry. Because everyone knows that nothing helps a guy get into a girl’s pants (and also learn why she’s such an asshole) like man jewelry.

ouat 4.2 hook squee

Hook admits to Emma that, back in the day, he got a new piece of man jewelry, every time he did something particularly assholey . . . at least until he ran out of fingers. (Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see Hook’s feet, so we can’t be sure whether he’s wearing asshole souvenirs on them as well.) Now, he wears the rings as a reminder that he used to be an asshole but isn’t one anymore.

Emma whistles uncomfortably at Hook’s admission of erstwhile assholeism, and later we find out why. She also shows Hook the ring on a pendant he gave her back in Camelot, which now I’m hoping didn’t come off some dead pirate’s fat finger, because that would make the Gift of Man Jewelry a smidge less romantic than we all originally thought it was, and also a little gross / potentially unsanitary.


Hook still insists on wanting to know why Emma is an asshole, so Emma decides to show him the house he wanted to buy for her back in Camelot, in which she now lives. Then, Emma and Hook start making out, and she roofies him with her tongue, because this relationship wasn’t already sufficiently dysfunctional.

i love you


You can check out the rest of this recap HERE!

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ONCE UPON A TIME: Sparkly Assholes Unite! (S5 E7 Recap)

merlin and emma

“Hey, I know we’re in a rush to save the world from Evil and all, but, you wouldn’t happen to know if there was a porta-potty around here somewhere? Being the Dark One gives you the worst gas ever.”

If there is one thing we’ve learned from watching five seasons of Once, it’s that Assholes aren’t born, they are made. Sure, there may be some people with higher assholey potential than others, who suck just a little bit more than your average human. But if you want to become a 100% Bonafide SUPER Asshole, you are going to have to make some really crappy choices in your lifetime . . . or you could just drink some bad tap water. Same difference.

It’s Origin Story Time, Once-ies. And this week it’s Sexy Merlin’s turn to have a Bad Romance (Trademark c/o Lady Gaga) that results in the Birth of All Things Evil, and also his spending 1,000 years as a tree. And you thought your last breakup was shitty . . .

Let’s review, shall we?

Love Means Never Having to Say Drinking Your 500-Year Old Tap Water Turned Me Into a Fart / Sparkly Asshole


You smell like poor life choices and an eternity of agony.

Once Upon a Time (See what I did there?) Sexy Merlin wasn’t a wizard. He was just some thirsty dude, chilling with a random friend of his, who had the audacity to be older and much less attractive than Merlin. While stomping through the desert, Merlin and his friend find what appears to be a cup filled with some piss warm tap water in it. Less Attractive, Older Friend is very excited about this, being stuck a desert and all, so he immediately drinks from the cup.

P.S. This “cup” just happens to be the Holy Grail. And because the Holy Grail is shallow and narcissistic, it isn’t about to let some not particularly attractive guy become the wizard, who just so happens to be super important to the plot of Season 5 of Once Upon a Time. So instead, the Holy Grail decides to turn Less Attractive, Older Friend into a fart . . . and not even a cool purple fart, like we’ve seen on this show in the past, or a sexy black fart, like the one Dark Emma occasionally turns into this season. This is a plain old grey fart fit for unattractive older folks.


Merlin is momentarily bummed about the whole “my best friend is now a fart” thing, but not bummed enough not to drink from the same cup that just killed his friend. (Oh the benefits of knowing that you are sexy, and, therefore, destined to lead a charmed life.)

cup found holy grail

Not only does Merlin not turn into a fart from drinking the tap water, it makes him immortal, so he never has to worry about becoming older, or fatter, or unattractive like his dearly departed pal. Also, he doesn’t have to hang out in the desert anymore, because it’s magically been converted into a forest.


Fast forward to a few hundred years later, when Merlin meets a hot chick named Nimue, and falls in love for the first time ever. (Yeah, because we are supposed to believe that a guy who looks like THAT kept it in his pants for half a millennium, saving himself for “the right one.”)


“Hello, Sexy Merlin, please take my flower . . . and yes, I absolutely intended that as an ABC-approved euphemism for sex.”

Though Nimue is excited about having a new hot boyfriend to whom she can give her flower (wink, wink), she’s kind of bummed that some bad guy (named Vortigan? Gorgonzola? Probably Vortigan, because Gorgonzola is a type of cheese . . .) torched her village, while looking for some cup. I smell foreshadowing . . . I also smell cheese, possibly Gorgonzola cheese.

Merlin eventually proposes to Nimue, but not before he tells her he’s a wizard, whose perpetually young and sexy. “But it’s gotten boring being so much better looking than everyone else all the time,” Merlin explains. “So I’m going to turn the Holy Grail into a sword, and use it to cut off my wizardly sexiness, so you and I can grow old, decrepit and ugly together. Sound like a plan?”


“Silly boy,” Nimue responds. “You think I like you for your personality? Why go through all the trouble of making a sword to unsexy and unmagic yourself on my account, when I can just drink the 500-year old tap water and become forever sexy and magical too.”


“What you are saying right now, kind of makes me think you have the potential to be not such a good person,” Merlin muses. “And seeing as how I’m a 500-year old virgin, being not such a good person is kind of a deal breaker for me. But I’m going to pretend I didn’t hear you correctly, because it is absolutely essential to the plot that my having the audacity to actually want to get laid after 500-years of monk-like celibacy inevitably brings about all the evil on the planet.”


“Cool, let’s go find the Holy Grail so I can drink from it and be hot forever . . . er, I mean, so you can make that sword thingy,” Nimue says, as the two head to the ruins of Nimue’s old village, where the Holy Grail, and it’s clearly contaminated, never evaporating, has the ability to turn old ugly people into farts, water is hiding.

Nimue drinks the tap water, while Merlin is distracted by shiny objects, but doesn’t tell him about it, so he forges Excalibur using the Holy Grail, the gross tap water, and the “Flames of Prometheus.” to cut the sexy right off of himself.

too sexy

Evil Gorgonzola (it just sounds better than Vortigan, so I’m sticking with it), however, wants Merlin to stay sexy just as much as Nimue and us fans do, so he appears to stop Merlin from self-mutilating and steal Excalibur. A fracas ensues, and Nimue gets caught in the crossfire, or should I say the cross-stabbing. It’s all very dramatic and tragic seeming . . .


But then Nimue pops up and is all, “Just kidding! I’m too sexy for this stab wound, and for dying, because I’m immortal now, just like you”

She then crushes the heart of Evil Gorgonzola, thereby making him more like grated cheese.

Nimue’s punishment for making grated cheese out of Evil Gorgonzola is that she now has to be a sparkly asshole for all of eternity. She also loses most of her awesome hair. But her eyebrows are more normal looking than Evil Emma’s, so at least there is that . . .


Nimue doesn’t want to be the only one who has to spend an eternity being unsexy, so she breaks Excalibur, thereby creating the Dark One sword. She also turns Merlin into a tree . . .

you destroyed stab it

And the rest, as they say is history. . .

You can check out the rest of this recap HERE. . .

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Heroism for Dummies – Once Upon a Time Recap Episode 5:6

sword looker

You know what’s hard? Being a hero on a Show About Heroes. Why? Because every time you try to do something heroic, there are always at least ten other people lining up to do it first. Continue reading

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ONCE UPON A TIME: Merlin = Sexiest Tree Ever (S5 E5 RECAP)

merlin free

Merlin . . . making trees everywhere super jealous . . .

This week on Once, we learned that, if you betray your family members and wave your hands around erratically, you too can transform a tree into a hot person! Speaking of learning, young Henry discovered that there is no place in the world that is darker than the dreaded Friend Zone. Also this week, Rumpel found inspiration in his dishware. Plus, the dreamcatcher industry got a ton of free advertising, courtesy of ABC.

Let’s review, shall we?

You Got Tree-d!

Once upon a time, there was a sexy sorcerer named Merlin, who cried on his sword about a lost girlfriend vanquished by the Dark One. So, the Dark One used that sword and that tear to turn him into a tree, because turning him into a vegetable seemed too “on the nose.”


“Hey, we resemble that remark!”

Speaking of “on the nose,” Emma learns this piece of information about Merlin by staring into his dreamcatcher. Apparently, dreamcatchers not only catch your dreams, but also all that other crap rolling around your head at any given time. Pretty scary, right? Remind me to wrap my head in tinfoil next time I’m around one of these dreamcatchers, because that will totally protect my brain from their nosiness. Tinfoil keeps out everything!


Other things Emma learned from staring at her dreamcatcher: how King Arthur turned her parents into Stepford Doofuses!

Emma freezes her Stepford Doofus-ized parents right before they take the Dark One sword from Regina in order to relay these important pieces of information to the erstwhile Evil Queen.

Regina and Emma decide together that, since a tear over lost love was the ingredient that tree-d Merlin, a similar tear from someone else (mixed with some of Emma’s dark magic, naturally) will un-tree him!

“Hey, remember that time your mom murdered your boyfriend right in front of you? I bet that will make you cry!” Emma offers to Regina.


the love

So, Emma and Regina relive the flashback from the episode during which Cora kills Regina’s first love Daniel, and, as it was designed to do, it makes Regina cry. But it also gives Emma some insight into Regina’s inner asshole. “Man, that sucked!” Emma exclaims sympathetically, as she puts the offending dreamcatcher back on the table. “No wonder you were such a raging bitch for the first two seasons of the show, before the writers decided to randomly make you into an overall nice person who’s just a little bit snarky sometimes.”

heart break

But alas, Regina’s tears aren’t enough to un-tree Hot Merlin. “I guess the brutal and traumatic death of a character that only appeared in two episodes isn’t sad enough,” Emma reasons. “Especially now that you have a new boyfriend. Because, on this show, only current love interests matter, and everyone else can go to hell . . . which, by the way, is probably where your boyfriend Daniel is, after he was turned into Frankenstein’s monster and killed all those people.”

“OK, so, whose love story is sad enough to untree Merlin?” Regina wonders.

“I’m thinking the rejection of a thirteen-year-old boy by a thirteen-year-old girl he met two days ago and thinks is kind of attractive,” Emma responds.

“Seriously? A tweenage crush gone sour? Did you forget that my mother MURDERED THE MAN I WAS GOING TO MARRY WHILE I WATCHED?” Regina asks incredulously.

“Yeah, but that was like a long time ago, and, like I said, you have a new boyfriend now, so suck it up and get over it, because this ridiculousness is needed for the plot,” Emma answers insistently.

Emma Gets Her Tear

When Henry’s new love interest’s father catches Henry pining over Violet in Camelot, he tells the poor kid, in no uncertain terms, that he disapproves of the courtship. “My daughter needs to marry a knight so he can die at a ridiculously young age on the battlefield and leave her to care for the twelve kids he and she dutifully popped out during the two years they managed to be married before his death. It’s the Medieval Dream! You, modern-day wimpy boy, who will probably live to a ripe old age and only impregnate my daughter 2 or 3 times tops, are simply not marriage material.”

“I want to learn to be a knight so I can die at a young age, after I marry Violet and turn her into a breeding mare,” Henry explains to his moms, Regina and Emma.

“You? A knight?” Emma and Regina snort simultaneously. “She won’t buy it. Better off putting out what works for you . . . like the fact that you live in a modern day world that actually has plumbing, so that your girlfriend will no longer be forced to poop in a chamber pot.”

so different

Inspired, Henry, serves up a modern day date for Violet, complete with candlelight dinner, lasagna, soda, and that same damn song he plays every time he sees her. (Hey, Henry, it’s time to get yourself a Spotify account. They are free now!)

“You seem like a cool enough guy for me to use your bathroom every once in a while, but we are never gonna bone. Sorry!” Violet exclaims, before rushing away.

never be a hero

Henry is devastated by this rejection and rushes to his moms to cry about it. Apparently, these tweenage tears over an unceremonious friend-zoning are way sadder than Regina’s “my fiancé got his heart ripped out of his chest by my mother and died in a puddle at my feet” tears, because Emma uses them, along with some weird dance moves that remind me a bit of the Macarena, to successfully un-tree Merlin.

tear dip

white and dark

“Hello, my name is Merlin. And boy are my arms tired from holding them upward in tree pose for a million years. Also, I’m sexy. I’m too sexy for the tree I used to be. Any questions?” Merlin asks.

hes back

“Do you like my cool cape? It came with the tree!”

“Yeah, can you suck the asshole out of me?” Emma inquires hopefully.

“Do you really want the asshole sucked out of you?” Merlin responds.

And, although the answer would seem to be super obvious, it’s to be continued, because we have to check up on the present day portion of this story . . .

You can check out the rest of this recap HERE.

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ONCE UPON A TIME: The Stepford Doofuses (5:4)

so much dust This is going to positively murder the ozone layer . . .

From the same people who brought you “Glass in your eyes that turns you into an asshole,” “Black goo that awakens your inner asshole,” and “People who pull out your heart to control you and make you do assholey stuff,” this week’s episode of Once proudly presents “Dust in your face that turns you into a Stepford Doofus.”

You would think by now these people would learn to wear protective goggles and keep their chests covered. But nope, it’s wide open eyes and oodles of cleavage everywhere . . . all the time.

trump snow

This week on Once, King Arthur continues his reign of douchebaggery, and Queen Guinevere is also kind of douchebaggy, but we learn that it’s not entirely her fault. Also, this week, young Henry and his girlfriend unwittingly learn that descriptions of horseback riding double nicely as thinly veiled metaphors for sex. And Emma and Hook, upon watching Emma’s son converse metaphorically about sex, get turned on enough to do a little “horseback riding” themselves . . . because that’s not disturbingly Freudian at all!

watching them Voyeurism: good . . . child porn: bad

Let’s review, shall we?

(Note: I’ve decided to tackle this recap chronologically, rather than the flippy floppy order in which the events were displayed in the episode, because it makes more sense from a recapping perspective. I get that this sort of undermines the major “twist” of the episode, namely that King Arthur is an asshole. But considering we all kind of figured that out the moment he set foot on screen . . . not to mention last week, when he, you know, killed a guy for no good reason . . . I’m thinking that’s OK.)

In which King Arthur was a cute kid who grew up to pretty much become Smeagol from Lord of the Rings . . .

Little Orphan Arthur isn’t very popular in “Broken Kingdom” Camelot, which is unusual because, for a child, he is really, really, ridiculously good looking. And good-looking kids are pretty much always popular, unless they happen to be super annoying. Arthur doesn’t seem to be too annoying, in the short clip we see of him.

young arthur

However, he does have this tendency to go around telling everyone that he talks to a tree and the tree tells him he’s going to be king. As it turns out, talking to trees and bragging about it is generally frowned upon by popular society, more so than being really, really, ridiculously good-looking and not too annoying is smiled upon. And so, Little Orphan Arthur is bullied and not particularly well liked.

orph king

Future Queen Guinnie likes him just fine though, possibly, because she looks around at all the dumb, uneducated, unwashed masses in her town, then looks at Good-looking Little Orphan Arthur and says, “Eh, so he’s a schizophrenic and possible megalomaniac. I can do much worse!”


Cut to a few years later, when a now adult King Arthur plucks Excalibur from its stone, realizes it’s broken (because it’s missing it’s Dark One Sword other half, naturally), hides that fact from the people of Camelot, and becomes their king, with Guinevere at his side as Queen.

Unfortunately, fame, fortune, wealth, power and a hot wife is not good enough for Ole Arthur. In fact, he becomes so obsessed with finding the Dark One Sword and making Excalibur whole again (even though no one gives two craps about whether or not it’s whole except him) that instead of hanging out with his hot wife and boning her on her birthday like a good husband, he holes himself up in an attic, studying where to find the Dark One’s sword. He does this for days on end, until he starts to look like this . . .

no friends

(But only metaphorically speaking, obviously, because men on Once, even the douchebaggiest ones, are positively forbidden from looking the least bit unattractive ever, unless they are an extra or one of the dwarves . . . No offense to the actors who play the dwarves, of course.)

ouat 4.2 dwarves

While Ole Arthur is busy being Smeagolized, Lancelot is downstairs showing Queen Guinne what a total stud he is (not to mention how much better of a catch he would be then her asshat husband) by orchestrating Guiney’s entire birthday, just the way Ole Arthur promised he would back in the day, and captivating her with some serious f*&k me eyes while he offers her a sexy dance.


carlton dance

Then, Arthur finally comes down to the party. And Guiney is instantly willing to forgive him everything. She truly believes he is finally ready to give her the love she deserves, despite the fact that he hasn’t done anything to indicate he’s remotely capable of this since the two of them still had their baby teeth. (We’ve all been there, ladies, am I right?)


But instead of dancing with Guiney, Arthur is all, “Can’t stay and hang. Gotta jet to the forest to find my half a sword. You know how it is: My Precious! My Precious, and all that! Peace out, Guiney, and Guy Who Wants to Have an Affair with Guiney.”

In which Queen Guinevere learns that it’s generally a bad idea to choose a husband based on what he was like as a ten year old . . .

Now, while Guiney may be a bit blinded by kiddie goggles, she’s no dummy. In fact, she may very well be smarter than her asshat husband, Arthur. “Hey Lancelot, I’ve got a plan that involves using this gauntlet to find my stupid husband’s toy sword before he does so I can get it back. Maybe it will make him slightly less douchebaggy, not to mention I could start getting laid every once in a while.”

Lancelot looks at Guiney dubiously. “Honey, all the toy swords in the world couldn’t cure your husband’s massive douchebagginess. But I’m going to come with you on this trip anyway, in the hopes that our obvious sexual tension will enable me to get a little side action while you wait futilely for your jerk husband to come to his senses.”

Guiney and Lancelot find the location of the Dark One Sword in about ten minutes . . . the same sword that Arthur couldn’t find despite looking for over ten years. This is because Arthur, in addition to being a douchebag, also sucks at life. But there are some obstacles.


First, the black sludge tries to capture Lancelot and turn him into a HUGE ASSHOLE. But Guiney saves him, and they end up making out. It’s hot, in a way that only kisses after avoidance of sludge that turns you into an asshole can be.

make out

Then, Rumpel pops up and prevents Guiney and Lancelot from taking the sword on threat of death. Instead, he offers them a very small vial of red dust that he says “makes broken things appear whole again.” Of course, somehow on this show this translates to “dust that turns anyone who comes in contact with it into a Stepford Doofus.”

Guiney returns home, and Arthur basically attacks her, because he thinks she’s hiding the sword from him, but all he finds in her bag is the Stepford Doofus dust. “Oh I am so leaving your ass,” Guiney says.

“No, you are not,” says Arthur, as he throws the Stepford Doofus dust in her face.

Instantly transformed into a Stepford Doofus, Guiney replies, “Of course I’m not leaving you! Please, by all means, continue treating me like crap, spending all your time humping a sword, and threatening to physically abuse me when I have the nerve to disobey your stupid requests. By the way, would you like to have sex right now?”


“Nah,” replies King Arthur. “I’m pretty sure I’m gay because I always look at Prince Charming like he’s a hot piece of man meat, and look at you, you are like my eighty-five-year-old grandma. Why don’t we dump some red dust on Camelot to turn them all into Stepford Doofuses instead?”

“But you’ve already used it on me, and it was a tiny vial. There can’t be enough left for the whole town AND for the people you use it on at the end of the episode too?” Guiney argues.

“Stop sassing me, woman! You aren’t supposed to have original thoughts as a Stepford Doofus.” Arthur insists, before dumping what appears to be way more than the contents of the entire vial of Stepford Doofus dust on all of Camelot.

Meanwhile, over in present/past day . . .

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ONCE UPON A TIME: Holding Hands While Doing The Wave and Other Tips to Fight Evil (S5:E2 RECAP)


carebear stareee

This week on Once, we got to take a longer look at those lost weeks in Camelot, which transformed Emma from a Savior with Greasy Hair and a Slight Asshole Problem . . .

never emb

. . . . to the Biggest Asshole on the Planet with a Teensy Weensy Savior Complex.

im the ak one

Also this week on Once, Robin Hood proved that being good with a bow and arrow doesn’t necessarily translate to being good at . . . well . . . anything else.

robin hood

Robin Hood is the Mr. Bill of Once, basically.

As for the other men on Once, Henry learned that it’s easy to be a pimp when you and the girl of your dreams are the only two people on the show with speaking parts who are within ten years of your age.

ouat season 3 henry doesnt lie

And Dopey got to take the title of Second Most Important Dwarf on Once, by getting turned into a tree. DO you know how much oxygen those things produce? Let’s review, shall we?

Tree to Be You and Me

made a tree

Over in Hangover: Storybrooke Edition, the newly amnesiac dwarves have decided to skip town, because it only has one place to eat, no fun activities to speak of (apart from battling CGI Villains of the Week), and no words in any of its books . . .

ouat 4.2 dwarves

(At least the guys in the real Hangover movie got to hang out in Vegas with Mike Tyson and his pet tiger . . . UPGRADE!)

. . . also because they are really scared of Emma, who wears a bun, dresses in black, has weird eyebrows, and therefore, must be the Biggest Asshole on the Planet.

The dwarves want to know what sort of bad thing will happen to them this season when they leave town, so they bully their least valuable player, Dopey, into testing the waters and endangering his life for the rest of them. (Personally, I would have gone with Sneezy, who had already been turned into a stone garden gnome by Emma in last week’s episode and, therefore, really had nothing else to lose.)


At first, Dopey seems fine, but then he turns into a tree, which proves that Emma might be the Biggest Asshole on the Planet, but she’s also a huge conservationist. Last I checked, Storybrooke had seven dwarves, but only like three trees. And since trees are clearly more useful than dwarves, our “Dark One” was just evening the score a little bit, while also, possibly, trying to prevent Global Warming. Why should Emma be persecuted for this? Who knew Storybrooke was filled with so many Republicans?

Sav-ior Ass

at the tree

Back in Camelot, our fairytale gang learn that another “evil” conservationist went and turned Wizard Merlin into a tree too. “So, if we turn the tree back into a wizard, maybe he can bang the asshole out of Emma,” Hook muses, excitedly. “Except, not in, like, a sexual way, because I’m the only asshole who should be banging stuff out of Emma in that way,” he adds nervously.

“Only the Savior can chop down this awesome tree and turn it into a boring wizard who isn’t even good enough at his job to prevent himself from being turned into an awesome tree,” King Arthur explains conversationally.

Emma is about to reveal herself as the Savior, until Regina puppet masters her with her sword and declares that SHE is the Savior.

shut up and aw used to

“That’s cool,” King Arthur replies. “Let’s throw a party so you all have an excuse to get dressed up in period costumes and dance. Also, meet my wife Guinevere. She has a very thick foreign accent and no other definable personality traits.”

Then some hot dude comes and gives Regina an “I’m the Savior” purple necklace to wear to the ball, while stroking his Evil Mustache and Laughing Malevolently.

becklace beck

Regina, of course, suspects no ill will from this obviously-up-to-no-good guy, because she’s a Good Person now, and all Good People on this show are required to be frustratingly stupid when it comes to predicting the evil machinations of Not Good People.

To Love an Asshole Is to Be an Asshole, Just a Different Kind of Asshole

love one careful

Back in Storybrooke, Asshole Emma and her Assholey Bunhead are helping us viewers to narrow the field of people who actually betrayed her in Camelot by being somewhat less of a dick to some characters on the show than others. For example, she’s still totally cool with her son Henry. She also propositions Hook to come back to her new crib and bang the sh*t out of her, because, as we’ve previously established, Hook’s spectacular prowess in the sack is one of the main reasons she’s kept him around this long in the first place.

dark one cant be

Belle, being no stranger to the overwhelming desire to bang the sh*t out of major assholes, cautions Hook to try to think with the piece of meat between his ears, as opposed to the one between his legs.

lonely hearts

But Hook is totally convinced that by sticking his tongue down Emma’s throat, he can lick the asshole right out of her, so he doesn’t listen to Belle.

making out with evil

Needless to say, it doesn’t work. But Hook somehow manages to keep it in his pants long enough to fend off Emma’s advances, thereby, leaving Hook, Emma, and all the TV Viewers with a major case of these . . .

ouat 4.1 blue balls

The Fast and the Fury-us

In addition to turning characters with non-speaking roles and no relevance to the plot into useful, oxygen- producing trees, Emma’s curse also apparently involves bringing the cast of Camelot over to Storybrooke, which is really a bigger punishment for the Camelot folks than for anybody else on the show, because, as we’ve already established, Storybrooke is a lame place to vacation.

“Is that all you got? Trees, a bunch of medieval dudes, and a mild case of amnesia?” Regina challenges. “I’ve made poops with more malevolent intent than your Evil Curse.”

Then a big ole CGI creature that looks kind of like the Dementors from Harry Potter, and the Wraiths from Season 2 of this show, and the flying monkeys from Season 3, and the bad guy from Fantasia we saw last season, appears out of nowhere and takes Regina’s boyfriend away. Robin Hood just kind of hangs back and lets it happen, just like he let his girlfriend get body-snatched by a wicked witch last season, and then let that wicked witch fertilize herself with his seed, and then get kidnapped by that same wicked witch.


“It’s a dementor wraith thing from Fantasia flying monkey Fury,” explains Belle. “It’s kind of like the IRS, only instead of taking people’s homes when they don’t make proper payment, they take people’s people.”

“So, someone has to die in order for me to get my boyfriend back, because I may or may not have killed someone in Camelot. Kind of like those Final Destination movies, only the deaths here are nowhere near as fun and gory?” Regina muses.

“Yeah, that about sums it up,” responds Belle, as she goes back to lovingly stroking the petals of the wilted flower that currently stands in for comatose Rumpel’s weiner.

looking at it

You can check out the rest of this recap HERE!

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