This week's episode circles back around to focus on Snow White and Prince Charming again. It also offers the welcome return of some series favorites.
Since taking the Forget-Prince-Charming potion, Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) hasn't been herself. It turns out that losing her love for him has made her so grouchy that even Grumpy thinks enough is enough. So she sets out to get revenge on the Evil Queen, with the fugitive prince (Josh Dallas) hot on her trail.
When Prince Charming finally catches up to her, he literally takes one for the team, thus proving to her that he loves her enough to risk death. For his trouble, he does get True Love's Kiss from her. On the downside, though, he also gets captured by King George's soldiers.
Things aren't looking so good for Mary Margaret either. Mounting evidence seems to indicate that she killed Kathryn Nolan. "Seems" would be the right word, though, since it's obvious to the audience (and eventually to Emma) that Regina has framed her.
When things finally look their worst, Emma (Jennifer Morrison) goes to Mr. Gold for help proving her friend's innocence. Then Mary Margaret escapes police custody.
Oh, and next week? We get to take a trip down that famous rabbit hole.
Dwarves! Any episode is better when you add the seven dwarves. And an anger-management intervention led by a cricket. The episode's parallel storylines fed into each other sufficiently without beating the viewer over the head to get the point. Nice callbacks to earlier episodes included Re's transformation and Mr. Gold's genie lamp.
David remembering a flash of his previous life -- at just exactly the wrong moment -- was a brilliant twist. And Mary Margaret's sense of betrayal at him at the end is perfectly played.
WHAT DIDN'T WORK
Because of the time-jumping nature of the series' fairytale flashbacks, it was a little confusing as to when this story took place and exactly what events had or hadn't preceded it. More so for casual viewers. And while it was a good effort, Ginnifer Goodwin is more believable as "Sweet Snow White" than she is as "Mean Snow White."
GIVING CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE
"Heart of Darkness" was directed by Dean White and written by Andrew Chambliss and Ian B. Goldbern.
"Once Upon a Time" airs Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
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