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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.”
“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.
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!
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.
“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.
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.
You can check out the rest of this recap HERE!