1. How did you react to the retelling of Cinderella's story?
Amy: I have always loved Cinderella. I was excited to see a new twist and to see Jesse Schram come back to the show. I'm always a sucker for a good royal ball scene as well. The only thing I was unhappy about was how directly the Clarinda/Jacob story seemed to mimic the Anastasia/Will story from Wonderland, now that we've been told that Anastasia is not Ella's stepsister. The majority of Once Upon a Time In Wonderland fans who I have spoken with all left with the same impression from OUATiW, that Ana was Ella's step sister and I was a little heart-crushed to see that go by the wayside.
Teresa: I enjoyed seeing her again, especially the ball when she meets Snow White and Prince Thomas. That was the scene I missed from her first backstory. Like Amy, I saw the parallels with Clarinda and Jacob's story and Will and Anastasia's. The latter was one of the most mature and satisfying romances Once has given us. I miss them.
Joanne: It was great revisiting Cinderella's story from Season One and seeing it from a different point of view. I was a little disappointed that Anastasia from Once Upon a Time Wonderland was not the stepsister that she had wronged. Clarinda's story was a pale imitation of Anastasia's adventures with Will. I did think that Lady Tremaine did a fantastic job as the stepmother.
Mia: I enjoyed the retelling of Cinderella's story. We've only seen Cinderella before the ball and then after once she and Thomas were married, so it was interesting to see how their first encounter went. I was glad to see that her happy ending worked out and that she could mend the bond that Cinderella had with her stepsister Clorinda.
Lori: I remember her episode so fondly from Season One with Emma's iconic quote (which I was glad to hear again in this episode). I thought this was a great re-telling, filled with the twists and turns that make classic OUAT.
2. What do you think will happen now that the Evil Queen and Mr. Hyde have teamed up?
Amy: Gosh, nothing good! Hyde is just so fantastically cryptic and the Evil Queen knows how useful he can be to her. I think they will use each other to get what they want, which I think is the power to not be combined back into their old selves. I believe Hyde wants to be his own man permanently as does Regina, and everything they do is solely to preserve themselves.
Joanne: They make a great couple, don't they? Wow. Nothing good is going to come from this team. Both of them have been split from their better halves and there will be no controlling them.
Mia: Now that the Evil Queen and Hyde are working together, they are going to make Storybrooke even worse for the heroes and go after them as expected because they both want to take over the town. It's going to be amusing seeing the two of them work together because both characters are so headstrong and it's either going to be a hit or miss. Either they will succeed, or they will fail possibly because they will end up disagreeing on what the ultimate endgame for Storybrooke should be.
Lori: I think it will be delicious . . . as delicious as Mr. Hyde's voice! Whatever happens - they will be up to no good and it will be very fun to watch.
Teresa: I agree with Amy and Lori. Nothing good, lol, but everything awesome. Evil and loving it. Good times!
3. Doctors Frankenstein and Jeckyll. Will they be able to recreate the formula? What may happen as a result?
Joanne: These two great minds will surely figure out the formula or some sort of antidote. I worry that there may be a rash of people splitting their personalities. I'm not sure that they should be science teachers in the local high school. Who knows what they would have the students cooking up in the lab?
Mia: I really hope that Doctor Frankenstein and Jekyll will be able to recreate the formula. I know that's it's not going to be easy and may take some time but they both are smart and I believe they can figure it out. As a result, I hope it will put the Evil Queen back in Regina, but I also have a feeling that someone else might try to steal the formula. I really hope they can fix the situation, since having the Evil Queen running around has been nothing but trouble for Storybrooke and the residents who just want to live a normal life.
Lori: OMG - I was so excited to see this! They will come up with something - maybe not the formula itself but some other interesting potion. But what I want to really see is the rest of Snow's faculty!
Teresa: I think that some lovely chaos will result. Who else will be Jeckyll and Hyded accidentally? Or deliberately?
Amy: These two geniuses, no doubt will figure it out. This is like the greatest chemistry class ever. Sign me up!!!!
4. Charming didn't burn the card. How do you see him moving forward in discovering his father's murderer? Should he?
Mia: I see Charming moving forward by not listening to Snow, and he's going to track down his father's murderer. I see the reasoning on both sides. It's understandable that Charming would want to find out the truth about what happened to his father, but on the other hand this is putting him in danger and he needs to be there for his family. I don't think he should do it because he's putting his life on the risk, but perhaps he can find out who the murderer is and make sure that no one else will get hurt by that person.
Lori: A can of worms. Of course he shouldn't, but he will.
Teresa: I liked this last scene with Charming not burning the card. I could see the wheels turning in his head. I sympathize with him. If my father were murdered I don't think that I could "let it go" either. The answer to this question though . . . now that is compelling and I can't wait to find out who did the crime!
Amy: I think its too compelling to let go. I mean, who wouldn't want to know who murdered their parent? Part of me thinks that perhaps he died in one of bandit Snow's robberies gone wrong. Wouldn't THAT be quite the twist?
Joanne: I think Snow was wrong in brushing off his concerns about his dad. David will now try and pursue it without her help and we know that they work better as a team. I wonder if his dad regretted giving away James and was trying to get him back. Maybe he was killed by King George or by Rumple.
5. Favorite Moments
Lori: So many. This was a fabulous episode. Rumple's poem, the FTL parts, Snow wanting to teach again.
Teresa: Rumple reading the poem to his unborn son. Absolutely amazing recitation from Robert Carlyle!
Amy: Ella and Snow meeting at the royal ball. Such classic princess goodness!
Joanne: Rumple reading the Scottish poem to his unborn son was extremely touching. I love Robert Carlyle's voice. I hope that Belle's heart was softened by the message.
Mia: A favorite key moment from the episode was when Henry encouraged Emma and told her that she could heal Cinderella. This was very sweet and brought back the Season One vibe. I also loved the scene where Emma asked Killian to move in with her. This was a big decision for Emma and it's always great to watch her walls break down.
6. Favorite Quotes
Joanne, Mia: Emma inviting Hook to move in by saying "I mean, I have a closet full of red jackets. I feel like I could make some space for some black leather."
Mia: "Believe me... if I can get a happy ending, anyone can."~Cinderella
Mia, Teresa, Lori: "Why can't a princess be a teacher? What's more noble than that? I'd like to teach again. Is that crazy?"~Mary Margaret
7. Anything Else?
Amy: I really liked the episode, even with the exclusion of Anastasia and Wonderland. It was a twisty fairytale, which is one of the things I dig most about the show.
Joanne: I noticed a lot of chess references in the story. Mr. Gold was playing chess in his shop and the Evil Queen made reference to moving Emma off the board before transporting her, Hook and Henry to another location. Is this some sort of foreshadowing?
Mia: I really enjoyed this episode, I'd say a bit more than the premiere. All around it was interesting and I believe they wrapped up Cinderella's story nicely.
Lori: I felt like this episode was a homecoming. I had the same excitement and warmth I felt from Season One. Things can be hard - and they should be hard, because the more effort you put in the greater the payoff - but they are offset by moments of hope and happiness. I had such a good vibe for the rest of the week from this episode.
Teresa: I too had nothing but good vibes this week. I have missed feeling happy after Once, and this was one of the best episodes in months, maybe years. It had something hopeful and positive for all characters and all fans. I have been so over the sadness, the "gotcha" moments that seem to take delight in having fooled fans into thinking that magic, happiness or even resolution was imminent . . . delivering the melancholy message that perseverance is futile. So how marvelous it was for me personally! That feeling I got, the joy Once can give to Sunday nights, is part of what made me fall in love with the show. If this episode's good-feelings are negated, I won't be surprised, but I will be very disappointed. It's time for the love and the joy. It's time.