‘Once Upon a Time’ season 5, episode 8 review: Captain Hook, Excalibur complicate Dark Swan story

Once -Sunday night’s new episode of “Once Upon a Time” was in many ways the epic love story of Emma and Hook, and for the first time, we had what we would consider a glimmer of hope for the story of the Dark Swan. We now understand precisely why she would turn away an opportunity to remove herself from the darkness that has so plagued her.

What we learned is that thanks to the cut that he suffered at the hands of Excalibur, the character now has a wound that continually re-opens every single time that the Darkness and the sword are destroyed. Hook actually seemed to die as a result of the wound, but not before we realized that he was actually a second Dark One. In order to keep him alive, she had to throw him into the same darkness. His name is on the sword right alongside Emma’s.

As you can imagine, Hook is not entirely pleased with the results of what he went through here. Zelena, who of course loves to stir this stuff up, was the responsible party for the big reveal, and now the pirate realizes that in some ways, he has become the Crocodile. Emma was ready to kill Zelena as a means to stop the darkness and restore them to the best of her ability … but what Hook didn’t imagine was that in pleading for her to not do that, he was dooming himself to continue living the same fate.

While we don’t love the idea of Hook and Emma continuing to suffer, we’ll give the show credit tonight for definitely giving us a surprise twist ending that we did not see coming at the end of the first half of a two-part event. Grade: B+.

If you want some other “Once Upon a Time” coverage, including a review for the second hour tonight, head over to the link here. Also, sign up right away to get some additional TV news on everything we cover, sent right over to you via our CarterMatt Newsletter. (Photo: ABC.)

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