Once Upon a Time
The New Neverland

Episode Report Card
Cindy McLennan: B+ | 119 USERS: A-
YOU GRADE IT
PANdora's Box
In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

Once Upon A Time, there was a beautiful mermaid named Ariel. One dark and stormy night at sea, she came upon a shipwreck and saved the life of Prince Eric, and later pined for him, and a human life, from afar. Finally, thanks in part to our own Snow White, Ariel met her prince. Because he had been unconscious at the time she saved him, he didn't know Ariel was a mermaid, tail and all. He didn't know she was only at his castle to meet him, thanks to a one day leg clause in her mythology. He felt like he knew her, though. Rather than court her, he immediately invited her to go on the road with him. Um? Ariel was afraid to tell him that she was actually a mermaid. Then, well, Regina happened, as is her wont. Later still, Regina happened again, in that she cast the Dark Curse, which swept Eric off to Storybrooke. Then Regina happened in a different way than Regina usually happens. Well, somewhat. She needed something from Ariel, and after that mission had been accomplished, she gave Ariel a magical bracelet which allowed her to have legs or a tail. Ariel returned to Storybrooke.

Now, in Storybrooke, Ariel's new old friend Belle locates Eric for her and brings Ariel to the docks to meet him. They find Eric filleting fish. After he chops the head off of one, Ariel says to Belle, "Wow, he must really hate me." Yeah, that should be a cute joke. Eric's chop is swift, brutal and matter of fact. Ariel's horrified expression is priceless, and her line delivery is smooth. The problem is, the joke makes no frigging sense at all, in the context of Ariel's backstory (on Once Upon A Time) because Eric barely knows Ariel, and that she never admitted she was a mermaid is a huge point in their OUAT history, to date.

The first time Ariel and Eric met, he was unconscious. The second time they met, they had one dance, a largely awkward conversation and a rather presumptuous invitation to a road trip. As a "couple" they have had none of the experiences that makes the audience root for them, or even care about them, so when they "reunite" and kiss, it is beyond hollow. Any good will the audience has for this pairing was front-loaded by the Disney film, The Little Mermaid. It was not earned by Once Upon A Time.

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Once Upon a Time

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