A Real Boy: Once Upon a Time Review, Selfless, Brave and True.

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This past Sunday Once Upon a Time returned with a pretty solid and enjoyable episode. There were a couple of missteps, but most of them were just personal opinions on my part. We get a glimpse into August W. Booth’s (Pinocchio) past. This is very welcome, as August was one of my and other fan’s favorite characters from the first season, and previously was not even glimpsed in the second season. Don’t get too used to having him back though, because of one of those missteps I mentioned. Still no sign of Killian Jones AKA Captain Hook, though he is mentioned. And yes, I do plan to keep mentioning his absence until he returns. We also get revelations involving Neal’s new fiancée, Tamara. And Regina realizes why the stranger Greg seems so familiar. Also some questions are raised about the nature of magic in Our World.

I keep trying to give Snow White the benefit of the doubt because I don’t want her becoming a character that I just hate forever but she just continues to be mopey. This week her desperate quest to snap out of her funk brings her to try to live vicariously through Marco and Pinocchio.

Regina finally realizes that Greg the Stranger is actually Owen, the little boy she tried to adopt/abduct way back in the ancient year of 1983. When he tells her he is here for his father, Regina informs him that she let his father go right after Owen left and never saw him again. Seeing as this is Regina, who told Rumple that Belle was dead and kept her locked up for basically decades in two different worlds, we can probably assume that Owen’s father is tied up somewhere wishing for death.

We see August last year when he started turning to wood back in Phuket. After failing to convince anyone sane that he is turning to wood (remember you can’t see magic if you don’t believe in it) he is referred to a man known as the Dragon who can reportedly heal maladies that are magical in nature. He bumps into Neal’s fiancée Tamara there. After the Dragon displays impressive knowledge of who August actually is to prove that he is legit, he demands a token that cannot be replaced (for August it is piece of the strings that Marco used when he created him) and 10,000 cold hard American cash. August ends up stealing this money from Tamara, who tells him she has cancer that only the Dragon can cure. After using his pilfered money to buy a vial of magic potion from the Dragon, August is chased by Tamara who takes the potion back.

Later Tamara goes back and kills the Dragon so no one can find out he had magic. Turns out it is suprisiingly easy to kill a Dragon, just wait until he’s levitating and changing into Dragon form and taser him in the chest. It was pretty disappointing, I was really hoping to see the Dragon turn into, ya know, a dragon.

After Snow discovers August, all wooden and stuff but still with a kickin’ beard, hiding out in the woods she decides to do the exact opposite of he asked her to and tells Marco he is there. But August is gone when they get to his trailer. He was sent away by Tamara, who has come to Storybrooke. She initially tempts him by telling him that the vial cured her cancer (which we know is a lie as she admitted to the Dragon that she never had cancer, she was just searching for real magic) but he decides to come back and want everyone about Tamara. She responds by tasering him in the chest.

With his dying breath August tries to warn the gang. Apparently by doing so he has fulfilled his pledge that required him to be “Selfless, Brave and True” and the Blue Fairy turns him into a living boy. But he has no memory of what he was trying to warn the gang about.

We then see that the person Greg the Stranger has been talking to on the phone is Tamara. While Neal is in the shower at Granny’s, she goes to Greg room and it is revealed that they are in a relationship.

So now onto a few Concerns and Questions of the Week:

Yes, that’s right. August’s reward was to go from a ruggedly handsome, drinking-age, motorcycle riding adult back into an awkward pre-teen. Forgive me if this seems like a bum deal. Sure a lot of people dream about being a care-free child again. But honestly can you imagine how much that would suck: going through puberty again, homework, paying more for car insurance because teens are terrible drivers? At least he doesn’t remember his life a cool adult, which would just be even more terrible. Plus once you get over the fact that he is reunited with his father (once again, better as an adult because then they could have reconnected over a beer or two), Marco is kind of getting on in years. He is going to be like 70 when the newly Pinocchio graduates from high school. That means if the kid ever wants to go to college he won’t be able to retire basically ever.

Here’s the question: What do think the Dragon means for magic in Our World? We are told this is a world without magic, but obviously that just isn’t true. How does one bring magic to this world? It is obvious that magic can exist in our world outside of the cursed Storybrooke. So why did Rumple lose his magic when he left Storybrooke?

There won’t be any new episodes until April 21st, so I will see you guys if there is big news or for the next episode!

Gregory Hartmann