Ooh, first post of 2012 :) Episode 8 airs next Sunday too, so I've caught up right on time - maybe a good sign of less procrastination/more efficiency in the new year?! Even though it's sort of cliche, I always feel "cleaner" after the New Year ^_^ I suppose it's all in my head, but it feels good to be starting another year with a mentally clean slate.
Anyway, revelation time! Yeahh...finally SOMEONE starts remembering their fairy tale origins. This episode is all about Graham aka the Queen's Huntsman (surprise surprise :P). Graham redeems himself and we get a good reason why he's bangin' ice queen Regina in the first place. We also get more Emma-Graham flirting, which is great since they do have a lot of chemistry :) I also went a little nuts with the wolf screencaps...could not resist!
Episode 7: The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter
Graham is being all emo and playing darts with expert precision. Magic Mirror/Sydney Glass bets him $20 that he can't hit the deer 3x in a row... so he shows off by hitting the deer square on the nose :P When Emma cold shoulders him and he throws a dart at her, narrowly missing her face. Though he states matter of factly that he never misses ^_~ it just pisses Emma off even more.
She tells him that she is not avoiding him as much as she doesn't care about what goes on in his personal life. Graham chases her down the street like a puppy, begging her to give him a chance to explain (I must admit it's kind of cute seeing Graham bounding after Emma ^^). He insists that she doesn't understand what it's like being with Regina, it's like "he doesn't feel anything" when he is with her. He apologizes to Emma for the secrecy but says he didn't tell her because he didn't want her to look at him the way she is now. Emma, in the typical smart-about-everything-except-love manner that seems to plague heroines everywhere, angrily asks why the he'd care the way she'd look at him anyway:
....so he swoops in for a kiss! Unfortunately, the kiss is less than pleasant for the both of them, especially because Graham suddenly gets flashes of a forest and white wolf that has 1 red eye, 1 black eye. While Graham stands there shell-shocked, Emma tells him that whatever he is looking to feel, he won't be getting it from her (girl power :) )!
Graham storms into Regina's house and after (somewhat thoughtfully I suppose) asking if Henry is asleep, begins kissing her passionately. One gets the idea that he is just desperately trying to feel something, rather than acting out of lust or love for Regina.
In a familiar castle (which eventually turns black, as we saw in Episode 1), TEQ comforts a grieving Snow by her father's coffin. She is deeply sympathetic and tells her though she is only Snow's mother through marriage, "I am here for you dear, truly and forever." Snow collapses in her arms and they share a sweet moment.
Sadly, it was all an act and TEQ was in fact responsible for Snow's father/her husband's death. Her next victim is Snow, though Snow is currently unaware of her plans. She rants about how nobody knows of Snow's wretchedness and what she did to her - unfortunately for us, she doesn't say what it was >< TEQ tells the Mirror that Snow's death must be planned carefully as she is well-loved by the kingdom - all the soldiers included. If they found out TEQ was responsible for her death, the entire kingdom would turn against her. They need someone who will not be sympathetic to Snow's charms, so the Mirror suggests a Huntsman.
|Not the best deer mannequin I've seen...this one looks particularly plastic...those horns ><|
Graham-Huntsman shoots a badly animated deer and in tears, begs for its forgiveness as it's death will not be in vain; the doe's death will save another's life.
|Probably thinking: wtf....plastic deer....|
White Wolf meanders up, whimpering for a bite of the fake deer and Huntsman assures him that he won't go hungry tonight.
Graham wakes up from that vivid "dream" and Regina, alert to the "reality" of his dreams, kisses him and tells him to stay the night. Graham, not to be deterred, insists that "It didn't feel like a dream, it felt like a memory." (Also a Lost allusion.) He irritably brushes Regina's offer to stay the night saying she never wanted him to stay overnight before anyway.
Looking like the definition of a hot mess, Graham goes to fetch his car. To his sanity's dismay, White Wolf trots up to him looking all sorts of lovable (as wolves go anyway). He seems to be imploring Graham to follow him but Graham has had enough for one night xD
The next morning, Emma trashes the flowers she thinks are from Graham only to find they were in fact for MMarg from Dr. Whale >_> She had a one night stand with him *blech* and called him. She's never had a one night stand before and feels guilty.
Emma: There's nothing wrong with you did. Trust me. One nighters are as far as I ever go.
MMarg: Well that's because you're.....
Emma: Because I'm what?!
Emma: No, tell me. What do I do?
MMarg: You're just protecting yourself. With that wall you put up. GOOD RECOVERY ^^
MMarg calls Emma's lack of emotion over men interesting considering her morning "floral abuse." Thought she refuses to admit it, MMarg says it's obvious that she has feelings for Graham ^_^! She warns her that the wall Emma has put around herself may keep out pain, but it also keeps out love~
|And I keep waiting for Mr. Gold to bop Graham over the head and bury him...|
Graham is looking for his dream wolf when he runs into Mr. Gold holding a shovel. He claims that he's doing a spot of gardening (wtf?! Who gardens in a SUIT?!) and inquires as to what Graham is up to. It's a testament to Graham's state of mind that he doesn't press further. Surely any sheriff worth his salt (or any sane person) would be suspicious of a man in a suit with a shovel in the woods at the crack of dawn. Recipe for some kind of serial killer but I digress...
Interestingly, (I'm not sure if this is my imagination going wild) when Graham asks him if he saw anything unusual, Mr. Gold inspects his wet-tipped shovel (blood!?) before replying that he has not. Mr. Gold tells him that there are no wolves in Storybrooke as far as he knows, but adds that there are those who believe that dreams are memories of another life. He leaves Graham with the parting words, "I do hope you find what you're looking for."
Huntsman and Wolf enter a bar and 2 ruffians start messing with him. We find out that that he was abandoned as a baby and raised by wolves. He despises humans for their selfishness and loves animals for their pure hearts. One dude in particular mocks him for crying over his kills and when he threatens his "pet," Huntsman snaps and handily disposes of them all. Witnessing this through her Mirror and well-pleased to see his callousness towards humans, TEQ tells her soldiers to bring him to her.
Graham follows the sound of wolf howls through the woods and finally catches up to his 1 red eyed friend. In a moment of inspiration, Graham whistles and the wolf trots up to him, as sweet as you please. He reaches out to pet his head and when he does -
- he gets more flashbacks of his other life. Particularly of the woman he knows of MMarg and a stag emblem. When the vision ends, the wolf is gone.
TEQ seems to like the Huntsman even more in person *rawr* and though she presses him for his true name, he doesn't give it. TEQ offers him the position of official huntsman in her court, luxury, and so much more *winkwink* Huntsman isn't impressed and calls her palace a cage and refuses to be her "pet." When asked why she can't have one of her own soldiers do it, she says it's because her prey is well-loved so she needs someone who has no compassion for humans; someone who can pluck out a human heart and bring it to her.
She slinks around rather seductively and asks him what it would take for him to execute the task. He says he wants the hunting of wolves to be outlawed. Wolves are his family and they should be protected. In exchange, he will kill who she asks.
Spurred on by his vision, a very frazzled looking Graham goes to visit MMarg. He asks her if she can remember how they met; MMarg can't remember and Graham adds that not only does he not remember either, he can't remember how he met anyone. He also asks (looking like a very scared wolf pup ^^) if he ever hurt MMarg. Maybe in another life? MMarg laughs that off saying he must have been talking to Henry. Graham latches onto how Henry believes they all have other lives they can't remember and I'm betting his next move is to go to Henry :}
Snow and Huntsman stroll through the woods as Snow reminisces how she loves staying at the summer palace because she feels so close to nature. Huntsman fiddles uncomfortably with his armor and Snow offers him an apple to help cool off. He refuses and Snow watches him meditatively as she munches on hers.
She announces that she has figured out that he is not a soldier at all; all of her father's soldiers always offer their condolences when they first meet her and he has not. Furthermore, he has his armor on wrong. She quickly surmises that he was brought in from the outside by her stepmother to have her killed, as none of her father's soldiers would ever do such a thing. Taking advantage of his slow reflexes in his bulky armor, she whacks him with a stick and takes off into the forest.
Emma is attempting to play darts (she sucks) when Regina waltzes in. Regina is pleased to hear that Emma is aware of her fling with Graham and mocks Emma for having no emotions - that's why she's still alone. She also tells her to stay away from Graham as she putting thoughts in his head that will lead him to self-destruction (aided by your hands no doubt -__-).
Snow is writing a letter when the Huntsman catches up to her. She tells him that she doesn't know these woods and is resigned to her fate. He is baffled by the antics of "your kind" and reads the letter as Snow braces herself for the end.
The letter's contents bring a tear to his eye, but he draws his dagger anyway and.........!!!!!!
....swipes a reed and drills holes into it to make a whistle. He tells her to take it and run. The whistle will summon aid that can take her to safety if she should need it. Though confused, Snow is not one to look the gift horse in the mouth and flees.
Cut back to Graham sitting in Henry's room perusing his fairy tale book (if I was Regina, I'd have burned that thing, but whatever). After hearing that he tried to hurt MMarg/Snow in his dreams (and after being grossed out that he kissed his mom ^_~), Henry says he must be the Huntsman. He keeps seeing wolves because they are his family and are trying to help him. As for his connection with Emma, it is because Emma owes him her life. If she hadn't let Snow go, Emma would've never been born. Henry also tells him that in the book, TEQ takes his heart as punishment for letting Snow go - she wanted him to never feel again - something that resonates with Graham.
Flipping through the book, he recognizes the stag emblem from his dreams and Henry tells him that that it's her vault, where TEQ stores her hearts. Graham, totally on board with the fairy tale thing now, decides that the wolf is trying to lead him back to his heart.
Emma is waiting out front to take Graham home after hearing that he is running about town looking all kinds of crazy. Graham frantically tells her that he must find his heart by following the wolf. When Emma gently lays her hand on his chest to prove he has a beating heart, he insists that the physical beating of his heart is the Curse's way of misleading him. The fact that he is "missing" his heart is the only explanation for his lack of emotion (more specifically, compassion/love) in his life.
Emma is just about to declare him legitimately insane when the white wolf pops up behind them ^_^ Both take off after the wolf as it leads them to the graveyard with a mausoleum marked with a familiar emblem.
|Seems like silver castle has gone all black now - the way we saw it in Episode 1. |
Her conversion to evil is complete I guess :\
When Huntsman remarks how she's still in mourning clothes, TEQ replies that she found that black just suits her. She eagerly reaches for the heart but the Huntsman gives her the letter first. She commands him to read it to her.
Dearest Stepmother, by the time you read this, I will be dead. I understand that you will never have love in your life because of me. So it's only fitting that I will be denied that same joy as well. For the sake of the kingdom, I hope my death satisfies your need for revenge, allowing you to rule my father's subjects as they deserve, with compassion and a gentle hand. I know you think what you are doing is vengeance, but I prefer to think of it as a sacrifice, for the good of all. With that in mind, I welcome the end. I want you to take my last message to heart - I'm sorry and I forgive you.
That pisses off TEQ even more -_- and it doesn't help that the Huntsman berates her for hating someone who has put others before herself. We hear a bit more of what Snow did to TEQ: "I shared a secret with her. And she couldn't keep it. And that betrayal cost me dearly."
|Tis the box like the one from Disney's Snow White!|
|Similar outfit too :D!|
The Huntsman hands over the heart and watches nervously as she eagerly places it in a gold box in her vault. The ruse appears to have worked until a drawer in her wall of hearts fails to open - indicating the heart within is not human.
Graham's determination convinces Emma to go along with it and they break into the little building. He turns over vases and searches for a hidden door as Emma watches him with sad eyes.
Regina, holding a bouquet of flower which she brings to her father's grave every Wednesday, interrupts the party. Graham takes the blame for breaking in and refuses to go home with Regina. This enrages her and wants to know if he'd rather go home with Emma then. Graham says it has nothing to do with Emma, it's do with him - he doesn't feel anything with her and now he knows it's because of her. He wants to feel something and never will unless he gives himself the chance. Regina turns on Emma, demanding to know why she keeps taking everything she values away from her. Emma fires back saying she should take a good look in the mirror and think about why everyone is running away from her. A GENUINE catfight breaks out with both Emma and Regina throwing pretty painful looking punches. Graham separates them and Emma walks away. When Regina reaches out to Graham, he wordlessly moves past her and follows Emma.
Graham apologizes for his actions and Emma easily forgives him, admitting that she understands wanting to escape your emotions through mindless flings; it's the easy way out when what you are truly feeling sucks. The air is thick with unspoken words and sexual tension as we see both youngsters blushing at each other as Graham tends to Emma's wounds ;)
Meanwhile, Regina pays respects to her father, whose plaque mirrors the one he has on his gravestone in the fairy tale world.
After a moment, Regina pushes back the lid of the casket and lo and behold, a staircase! Kind of sucks because I'm sure Emma and Graham would've found it if they'd had a bit more time :(
|....that's an unhappy recipient of a kiss if I've ever seen one.|
In the circular room full of hearts (good lord, this woman needs another hobby), TEQ exacts her revenge on Huntsman for failing her. She plucks out a glowy heart and passionately kisses him.
She shows him her where she will cage his heart. To prove that he is now truly her "pet" and what she could do to him should he try to disobey her again, she squeezes the little heart. As she does he falls to floor in pain, in the throes of something like a heart attack. Her point made, she calls her guards and has him taken to her bedchamber >_>
Anddddddd Regina heads to her Storybrooke version of her heart room and pulls out a particular crystal heart.
Emma goes in for a kiss ^_^ And with her kiss, Graham sees his entire fairy tale life flash before him - the wolf, the thugs that threatened his wolf, Regina as TEQ and even how he lost his heart! He pulls away from Emma, whispering that he remembers. He tenderly takes Emma's face in his hands and thanks her.
In her lair, Regina holds Graham's heart in her hands. Though a moment of indecision flickers over her face, she begins to squeeze....and the heart bursts, turning into dust in her hands.
At the police station, Graham collapses... :( NOOOOOOOOO...
It was good to see one of the fairy tale characters actually regaining their full memory, though god knows the satisfaction was short-lived :( I was fairly lukewarm towards Graham's character most of the time - other than thinking he was nuts for getting it on with Regina - and happily, this episode fleshes out the reasons behind why he was. I also understand why he was killed off so quickly, though it was a pity to see him go just as Emma opened up her heart to him. His death definitively shows how serious the implications of the fairy tale world are to the characters in Storybrooke - the magic of the fairy tale world is just as deadly in the "real" world. While we all know that magic exists in Storybrooke, I think Graham's death shows just how powerful and immediate it is. It raises the stakes higher and his death is a good way to strengthen Emma's determination to free Storybrooke from Regina's clutches. It also underscores the enormous void that the Curse has left in Regina's life anas d it appears that the Curse is not so much that she can't love again, but that nobody will ever love her again.
One thing that baffles me: Narratively speaking, I think it would've been awesome if the wolf that caused Emma accident in Episode 1 was the same red eyed wolf.
|Wolf from Episode 1.|
Yet it can't be since that wolf didn't have the different colored eyes :\ I dunno, maybe Graham's wolf will come back later (hopefully to take a chomp out of Regina) and/or this golden-eyed wolf will become attached to Emma. Cuz you know, even though Graham is dead, maybe they can together via wolf "pets" :D?