1. What are your thoughts on Dark Hook? Did it meet your expectations? What do you think will happen next week?
Teresa: Totally met my expectations. I adored it beyond belief. It was terrible, horrible, brutal....in other words what a Dark One is! I've been waiting for Colin to have a moment like this for quite some time, and he didn't disappoint. One hell of a performance! I feel for CaptainSwan fans, that was the down-side. I could almost hear their collective hearts breaking. They got Rumbelled and Rumbelled good! Right in the gut! What will happen? I think he will literally knock himself straight into Hell next week.
Amy: He's just so bad!!! Bad in a fantastic way. I enjoy watching the badies at work, and the extra guyliner is super appreciated. I will say that my heart was just crushed for Emma when he called her an orphan. The one thing he knew would just truly stab at her heart. I'm very interested to see next week's finale and exactly how this plays out.
Lori: On one hand (no pun intended - well, maybe a little!) I thought it was hysterical to see him go all dark pirate - smarmy and disheveled with a perpetual-bad-hangover look. But on the other hand, it made me realize how Emma really did fight the darkness inside her. Her stoicism and tight-lipped mannerisms were all about control. So really, the two Dark Ones work well together as a contrast: Emma being the Savior with light magic was able to control the darkness more effectively, and Hook, having reveled in darkness and revenge for most of his pirate life, is letting it spill all over him like a broken cask of rum.
Mauri: It was shocking to see him being truly bad, but he didn't have Emma's Savior magic to keep the darkness from engulfing him. With him being a Dark One it's like moving from sober to going on a bender.
Francesca: I really do not like this storyline. They have gotten so far away from the initial fairy tales that making yet another character Dark is not interesting to watch. Too many shows these days deal with dark subject matters like revenge, murder and deception. The whole initial appeal of OUAT was that there was hope, adventure and love. This has been missing for some time now; although Colin did a great job performing as the new Dark Hook.
2. After knowing what happened in Camelot, do you think Emma was justified in her actions of turning Hook dark and taking everyone's memories?
Amy: I don't know if it was the right thing to do but she was certainly justified. I mean, who WOULDN'T take the most dire undertaking in order to save someone they love and who has their whole heart. She was desperate. Regina went through the same thing, as did Snow, in wanting to save their loves. So they can surely understand.
Lori: She was desperate. If she had a chance to save Hook's life she was going to take it, and I can't say I blame her. Now, taking everyone's memories was her actual big mistake in my opinion. They could have put their heads together sooner and come up with more options to fix the situation.
Mauri: I think the darkness made Emma rely on her old instincts to not trust anyone.
Francesca: Again not sure where the writers are going with this. They definitely do not want to kill off a major character like Hook. The story makes no sense since Dark Emma showed up in the premiere episode and said "you will all pay for deceiving me" when she was the one who created this mess by turning Hook Dark. I am just totally lost here. Emma took their memories to protect them from the truth that she turned Hook into the Dark One. And now it looks like "Hell" has arrived in Storybrooke to kill all her loved ones!
Teresa: I don't think she was justified knowing what we now know. It was consistent with her character, but it was also against Hook's explicit wishes. Moreover, her personal desire to keep him put others in danger. She unleashed a weapon of mass destruction on everyone.
3.What do you think of Belle's decision at the well?
Lori: It's upsetting and disappointing. However, I am holding out hope that perhaps this means there is a grander gesture coming? Honestly I try not to think too much about it anymore. My heart can't take it. I have to say though, Rumple is doing a good job at keeping his heart clean. He was not even tempted by that squid ink. That says a lot about his redemption arc. He may be catching up to Regina.
Mauri: I'm with Rumple on this one. Belle's been nagging him to change since she got out of the nut house, and now that he has truly changed she still doesn't want him? That's okay though. I know 10,000 fan girls that do!
Francesca: I think Belle should have stayed with Rumple. After all, we need this couple to survive. They have overcome all obstacles from past to present and now they're breaking up yet again? Please STOP the MADNESS. I think Henry needs to come in and write some happy moments, because this cast of characters can use some.
Teresa: I'm with Lori and Francesca. What is the point now? It's hard too think too deeply about it because it has been part of a pattern for quite some time of raising hope, then pulling the rug. It's repetitive and not fun to be hurt at the last second season after season, waiting in anticipation for months on end only to be rewarded with a "dashed-hope" scene. Why invest in a story that has consistently been delivered in such a manner? To answer the question though, I completely agree with Belle's decision ... if this was 4b. It was a brilliant move for last year's Belle, but not what we were given of 5a Belle. Belle's theme, if she had one in 5a, was embodied in her statement of "it's never too late" and then that was negated by the "too late" scene at the well. It makes Belle seem inconsistent, or worse, shallow. It's a shame because "Beauty and the Beast" is unique in fairy tale lore because it was written by a woman, for women. Belle is supposed to be the ultimate "strong woman," and I wish more foresight were given to organically craft a story worthy of the iconic character. She should be more than a tool to be whipped out every now and then for a "sucker-punch" moment.
Amy: It's heart crushing and I am still not 100% that even WAS Belle. But if it was, as sad and crushing as it is, it might be good for them. Everyone has whined for 3 seasons about missing strong Belle from Season 1. Well, here she is! Let her be strong and discover through that strength that her heart and Rumple's truly do belong together.
4. It appears that The Outlaw-Evil-Wicked family came to an understanding. Do you think it will last? How do you see it working out? Or is it a disaster waiting to happen?
Mauri: I HATE the storyline with Regina, Zelena, and Robin. It's not a disaster waiting to happen; it's already a disaster. The storyline started out as just a stupid soap opera love triangle and turned into a complete mess when the baby was added.
Francesca: Not enough screen time for Regina and Robin. This seems to be a filler story because every time we see them together Zelena has the same lines that she got nothing and Regina has everything. Zelena is a loose canon, never know what she will do next ... and it will be a disaster.
Teresa: I can't see it lasting. Zelena is mad as a hatter and you never know when she will snap. I was screaming at Robin not to hand that baby over, even for a second. I think it is a disaster waiting to happen. Must give kudos though to Rebecca Mader. The range of emotions she conveyed were masterfully delivered. A great performance!
Amy: This is the unpopular view, but part of me hopes the Archer, the Queen and Mommy Green can work out some type of arrangement. I mean, she is Baby Hood's mother and maybe she IS beyond redemption, but she sure is fun to watch ;) Step family life doesn't start, or often continue, down an easy path. This story actually intrigues me a great deal.
Lori: I love that Regina recognizes what Henry did for her and is trying to give Zelena the same opportunity. I don't know if it will work though.
Francesca: My favorite moment was when they showed Henry trying to trust in Emma and work with her to get back all the dreamcatchers.
Teresa: Mine too. Any time Henry appears it is a "flicker of light in an ocean of darkness." Jared has developed into a fine actor and it's a delight to watch his scenes.
Amy: I love seeing Henry and Emma work together, I thought that was great. I also loved seeing the boat full of Jawas coming from the Underworld.
Lori: Henry giving Emma another chance. That kid always lives up to the "Heart of the Truest Believer" no matter how tall he gets.
Teresa: "Hi." ~DarkOneVisionRumple. Just too perfect!
Amy: "Once you go green you'll never go queen!"- Zelena
Lori: "You're being stupid."~Regina to Emma
Amy: I'm completely excited for next week's episode! So many people are annoyed with Hook and Belle right now but I feel like this is just leading into the rest of our story :)
Lori: Another thought to go with my answer to the first question: I think the Darkness in Emma fed upon her orphan issues. It was obvious in this episode that her tragic flaw is not allowing the people who love her to help her. It's just another wall. Hook attacking her with this issue is the Darkness trying to get to her both from within and without.
Francesca: I am sorry that my answers are of a negative nature, but that is the feel of the show. Although it is always nice to see the core cast, I feel the magic is missing. I hope it returns in the second half the season.
Teresa: As awful as CaptainSwan fans may feel, I believe there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Given the investment and publicity ABC has given the couple, I will be very surprised if Hope for them will be held off until May, or dashed when it appears to arrive, as often happens with other ships, On those fans' behalf, I hope the typical scenario does not happen to them.