‘Once Upon a Time’ season 2, episode 18 review: The sad story of August W. Booth

Eion BaileyHow great was Sunday night’s “Once Upon a Time”? It was surely one of the strangest of the season: there was no Mr. Gold, no Belle or Ruby, very little Regina, and Captain Hook was still missing in action. However, what we did ultimately end up seeing here was a supremely fascinating tale of how August W. Booth tried to rely on his survival instincts, and how he would have been okay if he had relied on virtue instead.

Ultimately, though, it felt as though the man otherwise known as Pinocchio was always doomed to fail with his quest here. After all, who can really fulfill a promise to be true and goo for their entire life? It was no surprise to see him start to become wooden again as a result of this, and the stunning part was how he managed to go about it. The Dragon, who had the power to heal him, is now in many ways the “Once Upon a Time” version of Jacob from “Lost.” Since he’s dead, we have no idea if we will ever see him again, but we hope to learn how he knows about magic, and how he got to the real world separate from everyone else.

While there were other developments this week (including Mary Margaret revealing to David that she tried to have Regina kill her), what we really think people will be talking about moving forward is the rise of Tamara as the new Big Bad for the rest of the season. Neal’s fiancee is a bad, magic-hungry woman. We don’t know why, but she killed the Dragon, tried to kill August, and it was revealed at the very end that she has been communicating constantly with Greg / Owen this entire time. Tamara is a compelling villain in that she’s completely mysterious, and for the time being, she continues to operate without anyone knowing what she really wants.

The saddest thing about this episode, great as it may be, is that with Pinocchio’s redemption comes his new form: a child. It’s almost as if the magic was a reset button on his life, which is strange for sure; really, we just see it as a way for the producers to use the character in the future without having to worry about Eion Bailey’s availability. (He does have other projects in the works, so he’d be a busy man if producers wanted him back.)

What did you think about this episode, and are you going to miss Eion Bailey? Be sure to share some of your thoughts below, and you can check out some more news when it comes to this episode over at the link here.

Photo: ABC

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