Once Upon a Time Review: Destiny Calls

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In last week's episode of Once Upon a Time, we learned who August was NOT. Here, we finally discovered the true identity of August Booth: is no longer just "The Stranger," he's also Pinochio come to life.

But with one proviso: he'll remain a real boy... er... man, only if he is brave, truthful and unselfish. Well, now we know what that pain in his leg is whenever he lies, or do we?

I honestly thought that was August's trump card, that when he showed Emma his leg she'd begin to believe. Unfortunately, August saw his limb turn to wood but Emma saw no such thing. Was that because there's no magic in Storybrooke or because Emma was in complete denial about her destiny?

In the fairy tale world we were transported back to the moment the magic wardrobe was created and it was great to see those dramatic scenes of Emma's birth that started the show so many months ago.

Tony Amendola as Geppetto

I couldn't blame Geppetto for being a bit selfish. He was trying to save his son but in doing so he linked August's fate with Emma's. The longer she resists her place as curse buster, the harder this will be on August. What happens if he continues to turn back into a puppet. Will those in the know see it happening but those who can't see the magic simply be watching him die?

August might be highly motivated but Emma's a born cynic. I can't imagine what it will take to change her mind if she can't actually see the magic. In this Once Upon a Time quote she was pretty blunt in her reply to August:

August: You're our only hope.
Emma: Then you're all screwed. | permalink

That Emma now wanted Henry as her son was a huge step for her but to take him and run? That just seemed reckless. What's her plan and what happens if she and Henry actually leave Storybrooke?

Across town, Mary Margaret told off Regina but also forgave her, which baffled me until she explained.

Mary Margaret: Your life must be filled with such incredible loneliness that your only joy comes from destroying everyone else's happiness. | permalink

She's right in that Regina's existence is sort of sad and pathetic but it also makes her dangerous.

David was Regina's knight in shining armor when her car broke down. Ummm... did he not know that she set up Mary Margaret for murder? I suppose if Mary Margaret wasn't speaking to him perhaps not. That's the only explanation I could come up with for him being so cordial.

Thankfully he only took Regina up on her lasagna and not her offer of seduction because that would have ruined the character entirely. But if he's considering Regina a new friend that could put him on a treacherous path, especially since David known for being clueless.

Little by little, the list of people in Storybrooke who know there is a curse continues to grow: Regina, Mr Gold, Henry and August. Who will be able to convince Emma of her destiny? With two episodes left, what's your guess for the future of Storybrooke?


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (174 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.


I liked the ep overall but honestly just could not get past the simply TERRIBLE casting of a ginger haired, brown/green eyed boy and a dark haired, incredibly strikingly blue eyed man supposedly being the same person. Awful! Very disappointing especially after they did so good with casting the young Snow White. I'm getting tired of Emma's denial...though I guess without it we have a very different show.


August just makes me miss Graham honestly. I know G's story is done - death is the one immutable law in the universe, but surely there must be more to the huntsman's tale, so we can at least get something even if it isn't E/G goodness.


@Millicent - It was explained in the premiere. The "cursed" residents of Storybrooke are bound to live within its borders. Emma & August/Pinocchio are not cursed because they were protected by the tree & sent away before the Curse descended (most recent episode). Hence, they age & can come & go like regular humans. August also maintained his memories. Henry is Emma's son, & by extension he's also a normal human being. We haven't seen Mr. Gold or Regina try to leave. But, since they aren't "cursed" like everyone else, stands to reason they could also leave if they tried. The one thing they can't seem to do is use magic like they did in Fairyland.


How were August & Emma able to leave Storybrooke to go see the tree? The sign said they were leaving.

Kitanishi h mcdonald

If Emma starts to believe that fairy tales are true, would not this be the end of the series? Not really. For one, Curse and ending it is just a beginning. We do not know what happens AFTEr and we have huge plotline foreshadowings at every corner. For second, curse breaking might not be instant. You would have to deal with it slowly breaking and more and more magical problems appearing in storybrooke.

Kitanishi h mcdonald

By the way, does anybody know what happened to the preview where Emma was about to kill Regina, who seemed tied to a tree? Is that gonna be a dream sequence or something? Cause we didn't see it on this episode...
That was not a preview for just this episode. it was a preview for all final episodes. It happens in next ep.

Kitanishi h mcdonald

I noticed a lot of people are starting to get impatient with Emma.
I LOVE Emma as a character. She is pretty much one of the most unique characters on tv right now. One of major traits that make Emma Swan so relatable is her overall normalcy. She is a normal, realistic and flawed. person thrown into all this crazy stuff. Someone who has made a LOT of mistakes in her life and who has been pushed around and hurt by cold reality and her own imperfections again and again.
She does not react as a “hero�. She reacts as a human and the forest scene showcases it perfectly.
She is scared, tired and in denial. She cares for Henry, but she just has so many insecurities to care about anything else, to have wider responsibility. Accept wider consequences. That, alongside parallels to Regina, is what makes her AWESOME.


I had a bit of a challenge with August's total confidence that he had it covered, getting Emma to believe, but his whole effort was based on showing her the tree... I mean, whatever did he think THAT was going to do? She was an infant, it's not like it would trigger memories...yes, I realize the leg was his fallback and that was a bust, but the whole "TA DA! Here's the tree we popped through!!!!" thing seemed really weak to me. Did I miss something? Were there faeries peeking out of it or something?

Beverly brooks

If Emma starts to believe that fairy tales are true, would not this be the end of the series?


@Sean - Season 2 begins in the fall, usually mid-September. The actual dates aren't set yet.

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Once Upon a Time Season 1 Episode 20 Quotes

Your life must be filled with such incredible loneliness that your only joy comes from destroying everyone elses happiness.

Mary Margaret

Now where exactly would we be going on this magical, mystery tour?