‘Once Upon A Time’ Panel: “Devil’s Due”

Hello Oncers! We got the good and the really, really bad this week, or so it seems. Not only was Captain Swan reunited (can I get a Hallelujah?), but we also got to see Rumple in his full Rumpleness.  But, oh, how things have changed. Or will change, for now Hades is the one who’s got Rumple right where he wants him. And isn’t that just …hilarious?

I know, I know, I’m bad. Hades having the upper hand is not a good thing. We don’t want Hades to win, of course. But we don’t always get what we want. And Hades is a good villain, so, I guess we’re going to enjoy it while it lasts and hope that the aftermath is not too bad for our favorites.

Joining me today are Sandra, Hagit and Lyra, as we recap the good, the bad and the senseless in “Devil’s Due” So, let’s begin!

Emma was finally reunited with Hook in this episode. Was it all you thought it was going to be, or would you have liked something different? Give me all your Captain Swan FEELS.

Sandra:  Yes, I loved it, I loved it. I loved how Emma was so determined that she didn’t even have a second thought, she just went over that little thing and saved Hook. And I also really loved how his first thought was “You shouldn’t be here,” because he’s always putting her first. I also really enjoyed the conversation that followed, the “I never listen” and the “You’re impossible.” Just Captain Swan being Captain Swan, and I loved that.

Hagit: The Captain Swan reunion was great! I was a bit worried it would be over the top but it exceeded my expectations. Killian’s worry about Emma in that moment was touching – just think HE was the one who died, got tortured and he selflessly tells her to get out of there! That’s my hero!! I won’t lie – I cried from the scene. Twice. And also from the gif set.

Lyra: I wasn’t feeling it at all. After that cliffhanger they left us with last year I expected more. It was lacking after all the foreshadowing of the pain he was experiencing in hell and his turn as a Dark One. I thought I would see them encountering vicious beasts, scheming Hades at every turn, and a perilous but death defying moment where their faith and love finally reunites them! (All of this is followed by an explosion of love and feelz fireworks.) I didn’t get any of that. When she found Hook I shrugged and said, “Well that was anti-climatic.”

We learned in this episode that, as had been speculated, Belle is indeed pregnant. Do you see this as the beginning of a redemption arc for Rumple, or do you think this can be a storyline for Belle, one that finally allows her to shine on her own?

Sandra: About the pregnancy, I really hope this is an arc for Belle. I love her character, but this Rumbelle dynamic is getting tiresome, in my opinion. He does something bad, he lies to her, she finds out, she cries, then she forgives him, and repeat. I really think Belle deserves better. And about Rumple being redeemed? Well, I really don’t see at this point how he could be.

Hagit: After everything Rumple did he is simply beyond redemption. He got more chances than anyone else! Not to mention that poor pregnant Belle deserves something better than him after all his betrayals. Sadly, I think that the writers are gonna go with one final redemption for him, one that will stick this time – his new son would probably be his final step into the light if I know the OUAT writers. Though he simply don’t deserve that, and Belle never gets enough screen time or a story-line of her own.

Lyra: *bangs head on desk* Forget Rumple. He’s had multiple chances to redeem himself. And every single time he’s plays us and Belle like a fiddle. No more. HE’S NOT GOING TO CHANGE! The thing he loves the most is his magic. Not Belle. Not his own son. Not son 2.0. Belle is the one that will have her moment to shine when she becomes aware of her pregnancy. No longer will she let her love for Rumple cloud her judgement. No longer will his pretty words bring her back to him after all the lies and deception. He’s going to have to show her that he’s capable of keeping his promises. And there will be no more excuses because there will be a life dependent on Belle to care for and protect. Rumple won’t know what hit him when she puts her foot down. (Or that’s what I’m hoping for. Belle really is a sucker for an “I love you” and “I promise I’ll change.”)

In the words of Olivia Newton-John from Grease, “You better shape up, cause I need a man. And my heart is set on you.”

What do you think Charming/Henry and Robin were doing while Emma and Rumple were saving Hook and Regina and Snow were visiting Daniel’s grave? Chilling?

Sandra: I want to think the boys were actually cleaning, because we saw Emma in her room in the promo, and it looked much cleaner! LOL.

Hagit: I actually didn’t think about it til now. I hope they were cleaning up the apartment!

Lyra: Netflix and chill. Come on, there is Netflix everywhere and Hades would make sure he has the best wifi in the entire Underworld. That’s the only explanation for all the residents of the Faux Storyville not losing their minds. Unlimited access to all the binge watching your eyes can handle! Charming, Henry, and Robin were most likely catching up with Season 2 of Daredevil while eating food from that witch who eats children. I’m sticking to that story.

Is Milah a relatable character? Did the show did enough to make you like her, or are you stuck in the “she left her child” part?

Sandra: Still stuck. Forever stuck. I just can’t move on. Even if Rumple did the wrong thing, at least he did it for his son. He always did it for his son. Milah just left.

Hagit: I didn’t have such high hopes for episode 14 and I think it was one of the best episodes of season 5 so far, because it managed to do what I never thought they could do: Makes us get attached to Milah. Seeing her first meeting with Killian and why she decided to leave Rumple gave her character so much depth and justified her actions, at least plot wise. I never expected to like her on the level I got to in this episode. I think this episode did justice to her character and I personally stopped judging her for leaving her son, though I don’t know what would I do if I were in her place.

Lyra: Is ehhhh an acceptable answer? Look I understand that she was tied down in a life that she didn’t want (this is the part of her that’s relatable.) Who hasn’t felt that sometimes in life? She was out of options just in time for Hook to swoop in with his guyliner and whisk her away to a life of adventure where her troubles just floated away (this part was not so relatable.) It still doesn’t make it right. Too little, too late Milah. Her son is gone and she’s paid the price for leaving him by not watching him grow up, being killed by Rumple, and being kicked into that creepy river of Lost Souls by Rumple (again.) I do give her points for keeping an eye out for the boat and helping Emma. However it’s all marred by the fact that she was out of options with nothing else left in life. How am I to know that she would have actually helped if there was a chance for something more or if she wasn’t stuck there? Maybe she was just bored of watching those kids who are someone stuck IN HELL with her. *shrug*

Hook seem baffled that Emma would consider splitting her heart with him. Do you think there’s a part of him that doesn’t think he’s worth it, or do you think he just doesn’t want to put her in danger? What’s your read on his hesitation?

Sandra: I think, for Hook, Emma’s security is his priority. We saw how his first reaction was “You shouldn’t be here,” because he puts her first and he doesn’t want her in danger for his sake, but there is also the fact that he isn’t used to people doing things for him. And Emma sacrificed everything. Everything. So, a part of him just doesn’t know how to deal with it. So, I think it’s a little of both.

Hagit: I think it’s a mix of everything: He loves her so much so he genuinely doesn’t want her to get hurt – we all saw that the first thing he told her when she rescued him is that she wasn’t supposed to be there – he wanted her to be safe and he would rather she not endanger herself for him. I also think he’s still not 100% sure that after what he did as a Dark One she & the gang will forgive him, probably thinking he’s weak and gave into darkness so fast that he is not worth being with the savior.  He loves her so much and he doesn’t want to let her down again.

Lyra: It’s a little bit of both honestly. He loves her deeply and would do anything for her. And if living means that she would be hurt he wants no part of it. Hook isn’t that scoundrel anymore. He knows the value of this woman in front of him and will protect her from all, even himself. Now onto the self worth part. He’s hurt a lot of people, most recently the woman he loves, her family, and his new friends. There needs to be a punishment for that in his mind. So when he’s confronted by her offer it’s a shock to the system. He doesn’t understand how they can forgive him so quickly and how Emma can make such a grand gesture. A part of her will be inside of him! There’s a huge responsibility that comes with that and he’s scared, hesitant, and certain that his actions don’t warrant such kindness. I’ve got news for you Hook, you do.

Regina got some closure with Daniel, but in a way, also with Snow. For so long she blamed Snow for Daniel, and now it seems like she can finally put Daniel and her resentment to rest. What do you think about Regina’s journey so far, and do you think she and Snow can finally become what they were meant to be, all those years ago?

Sandra: I think her journey has been good. I think she really is trying and has been trying to do the right thing, in her own way. Her intentions are good. I think the closure she got in this episode will her her to move on in forgiving not just Snow but herself for Daniel’s death. I think she’s always felt like it was her fault, like his death was on her, because he only died because he fell in love with her, and that’s been bringing her down.

Hagit: I think the show is moving toward a redemption for all the villains, Rumple being the hardest of course. Regina and Snow seem closer than ever in this last couple of episodes and I have to say that Mary Margaret’s decision to be called Snow White only from now on makes them even closer in this aspect: Regina may be at peace with Mary Margaret but she needed to be at peace with Snow White too. Only after that decision can they become real friends in my opinion. I’m actually thrilled to see how this relationship will go from here!

Lyra: Honestly…I didn’t think of this when watching the episode. (Too focused on the situation going on with Rumple/Milah.) This notion that Regina found closure at Daniel’s grave is quite beautiful. I think Regina’s journey has come full circle. At that grave she finally let go of all that pain, anger, and resentment towards Snow White. She also let go of the woman she was. Regina is no longer the Evil Queen. She’s a friend, a mother, a confidant, and a badass wielder of magic. Only direction she can go now is up! As for her relationship with Snow, I think they’ve been family for a while. This moment acts a marker solidifying how time has healed the wound between them.

Hades out-Rumpled Rumple in this episode. How do you expect the darkest of all dark ones to react? Do you see a happy ending in sight for Rumple and his unborn child, or do you think he’s going to end up paying the price?

Sandra: I just don’t see how Rumple can ever be forgiven. He keeps choosing power, keeps proving that it matters more to him than Belle, or Neal, or anything. I hope I’m wrong, I really am, because I love the character, but I’ve reached a point where, after all he’s done and all he keeps on doing, I just don’t think he’ll have a happy ending, or that he deserves one.

Hagit: Back in season 1 Rumple was my favorite: he always out smarted everyone, always knew the whole picture and knew how to maneuver them all to his will like he was playing a creepy game of chess. Rumple always had tricks up his sleeve and I think he could out smart Hades too if he wanted – he loves loopholes – I’m sure he can figure out one now. We all saw how much Rumple loves his son(s?) – Becoming the Dark One to protect Bae and creating the Dark Curse to reunite with him – so he will do everything he can to protect his unborn child. I just hope he’ll make the right choices and not the selfish ones.

However, as I said – Rumple is beyond redemption for me. I think that the writers are trying to go this way with his character but for me the only way to redeem himself is to die saving everybody, which he already did in season 3 episode 11 when he killed Peter Pan.

Lyra: First off, I think Rumple is going to scheme, lie, and betrayal everyone that gets into his way. It’s in his nature. Second, I think Rumple is going to get away with EVERYTHING and it makes me want to pull out my hair and scream. Why? Because this show continues to use the power of love as his crutch and excuse for still being on the show. The way he bends rules and doesn’t pay for his mistakes is ridiculous. And the way he plays with Belle’s heart, when all he truly loves is his magic, borders on abuse. His love isn’t pure, it’s bothersome and needs to be cut out of the show. Pick a side Rumple. We’re tired of it and Belle would too if they didn’t make it that pretty words fixed it all. Give me actions. Until then I don’t care what happens to you or the fact that Hades tricked you. Boo-hoo. Cry me a river like the one you threw Milah into.

Agree? Disagree? Have your own answers to these questions? Sound off in the comments below!

Once Upon a Time airs on Sundays at 8/7c on ABC.

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