“Once Upon A Time” SnapCap (5.12): Go to hell. Literally.

Hi there, and welcome back to the Once Upon A Time recaps. Just to warn you, things are going to look a little different around here from now on, and I would like to tell you why: I’m sick of this show’s queerbaiting. They promised us an LGBT relationship this season, and it hasn’t happened yet. They’re still patting themselves on the back for Mulan “coming out” two seasons ago, even though the scene was so vague that half the straight people I talk to STILL think she was trying to admit her feelings for Philip, not Aurora. (Which, granted, is also on them. But the fact they’re even able to rationalize the gay away is a problem.)

And don’t even get me started on SwanQueen. When they realized so many people shipped them so much, and they realized that their own story was feeding into that, they panicked and forced love interests on them both and hardly ever let them leave their sides, which was a disservice to the fierce female characters they once were, and highly unnecessary. Even if they were never going to go there with Emma and Regina, they didn’t have to force them apart so aggressively and have both of their storylines suddenly revolve around men when they were doing just fine before.

That said, there are still a lot of SwanQueen fans out there, and I don’t want to do them a disservice by ignoring that entirely. So until we see what this supposed LGBT storyline is, I’ll be doing little SnapCaps like this to check in on the Storybrooke Squad. But I won’t be giving it the full recap treatment until then. The show doesn’t deserve it, not anymore.

Let’s start at the very beginning.


In this episode, Team Charming goes to the underworld to save Hook for reasons I will never understand. On the way to the Underworld, Emma sees Neal, because he’s not in limbo, where she’s going. He tries to warn her that this is a terrible storyline idea, but she has no say in the matter, so she has to go on.

OUAT 512-1“Please. Save me.”

The Underworld looks like Storybrooke because of course that’s what hell looks like, and there they see souls they’ve lost before, including Cora. Cora tries to blackmail Regina into abandoning her friends and leaving the Underworld ASAP, but she doesn’t bite. Gold finds the magic potion Merida used and brings it to Emma, who tries to use it to ghost-skype Hook but the reception is crappy. Regina uses the rest of the potion herself and has a father/daughter reunion. He tells her to be a good friend and not worry about what Cora threatens. She does, and her father goes into the light to a better place. This gives Mary Margaret the notion that if Henry Mills the First can be saved, all of the lost souls down here can be saved, so it’s her fault we’re spending half a season here.

In flashbacks, we see the Evil Queen tearing the Enchanted Forest apart for her birthday. She sticks her fingers in a girl’s pie, almost kills Snow White but fails because her father wouldn’t let her, so she puts her father in a box. Regina’s father accidentally brings Cora from Wonderland, and Regina eventually gets Cora back to Wonderland for good, but she takes Papa Mills with her.   

Underground Storybrooke ends with Cora going to see a man down below the city who turns her into a peasant as punishment and has glowing blue fire hair, meaning he’s definitely Hades. Also, something that will likely come up again: Every tick of the clocktower means a soul has been saved, as Regina found out from saving her father.

OUAT 512-2That smile was the best part of the episode, tbh.

And get excited, because it seems this awful Kelvin Instagram filter is how this show is going to distinguish Underworld!Storybrooke from Storybrooke, despite that being entirely unnecessary, and really inconvenient for screencapping.