We will admit that we’re not the biggest fan of TV musical episodes, mostly because they often don’t amount to much more than indulgence. It’s like getting a giant piece of chocolate cake and proclaiming it to be lunch — it’s nice in the moment, but it doesn’t leave you with much in the way of substance.
This brings us to the Once Upon a Time musical episode on Sunday night, and we will say that there was a good bit of filler in here — especially in flashbacks. Could the show have completely abandoned the musical component altogether and focused just on the story? Probably, but we will give the show credit for making their numbers fun, and a nice little celebration of how we got to the point of the Emma / Captain Hook wedding at the heart of the story.
Remember the recap / clip show episode? We get those for many shows when they’re trying to either fill time or remind people of the past few years. Here, the songs almost felt like they refreshed the entire story, and who some of these characters were before they got to Storybrooke. The Zelena song came a little out of nowhere, but other than that, there are no critiques for the individual numbers. The most problematic part was when the show tried to splice together the Snow / Charming and Evil Queen numbers into one at around the 41-minute mark. That didn’t quite work; it does only seem appropriate that this is when the Queen took the music away from the lovebirds. They had thought previously that their song-spell would protect both them and also Emma.
There was one musical number at the end of the episode, when Henry discovered that Emma had the power (i.e. the “song”) inside her all along to take on the Black Fairy. Yes, it’s incredibly hokey that Emma did temporarily defeat the Black Fairy for the time being by singing, but she is the daughter of Snow White and in Disney lore Snow White’s singing voice could do all kinds of remarkable things. It’s a cheesy show in that way, but sometimes that’s okay.
Now, the wedding
While the Finale Battle is still coming, Emma got a temporary reprieve from the fight so that she could marry Captain Hook in a super-sweet ceremony, which was attended by everyone in Storybrooke. Archie was the minister, and Henry was the best man. If you love Captain Swan, we have a feeling that you probably enjoyed every second of this. It was sweet, it was picturesque, and it was romantic. It was a celebration of the show, but also how far Emma has come. The biggest surprise is how quiet some of those babies were!
There was a cliffhanger with the Black Fairy seemingly carrying many characters off to the Final Battle, but we haven’t quite seen where they are going and what it will be like.
Some of the music was unnecessary, but for us to rail against that after an hour so hopeful and happy would be rather ridiculous. For this sort of show, it fit the tone nicely. Also, this was one of the better TV weddings we’ve seen in a while. Grade: B.
Get ready for the Final Battle
You can click here in the event you want some further next on next week’s finale! This is a two-hour event, and everything on the show will be coming to a head. (Photo: ABC.)