Hello & welcome back to The Magic of Storybrooke and after a long hiatus, I have returned and today, we learn why it’s not easy being green.
It’s Not Easy Being Green
I think we all know, where the show got it’s title from.
I remember, when I first learned of this episode’s title, it made me chuckle. However, you can look deeper into this episode title and see it as a reference to Zelena’s struggles and how her foster father never loved her or that, she felt betrayed by Cora and her jealously of Regina, led to her becoming, hence it’s not easy being green.
We open on Neal’s funeral and while this is a touching moment, I do have one minor complaint with this scene. Everyone from Hook to Emma truly show their emotions as they bury Neal and I’ll admit I was bawling when I watched this scene, the first time but anyways, my complaint is that I wish that this scene and that’s I wish that there had been no music. I don’t know the background music for this scene kinda took me out of the funeral, the second time I watched this episode. I think that this scene would’ve played better if the entire scene had been silent.
This scene just gets to me, Emma having to bury her first love and the father of her child and oof, Henry still doesn’t remember that this father was a good great man. Look, I may be a Captain Swan shipper but I didn’t hate Neal. While this is going, we see The Wicked Witch taunting Rumple and asks him if casting the curse was worth it and Rumple says that he’d do it all over again. We later see the townsfolk at Granny’s for the wake and Zelena make her grand entrance and we find out that she is there to see her little sister, Regina. Where we get this good but corny exchange between Zelena and Regina.
I’ll admit it is a little jarring to go from Neal’s funeral to this. Later on, at her vault, Regina finds a letter from her mother that she had always believed to be about her. It was from Rumple stating how talented her first born. Ooh, that stings. Later, Regina is tracked down by Robin and pickpockets the letter and reads it aloud. And Regina admits that she is nervous because if Rumple thinks that Zelena is more powerful than her, there’s no hope for her win in the ensuing fight. Meanwhile, our other heroes discuss a way to try and get through to Gold and Belle through to her beloved without using the dagger but it’s to no avail as that crafty little witch still has the imp under her control. With all of this going on, Hook and Henry had been spending some time together as Hook thinks he can help the boy to know what his father like at his age. It’s a minor but rather touching subplot.
And then it’s time for the showdown but first, we have this great line.
Zelena: Out of my way, Munchkin.
Sneezy: I’m a dwarf.
Zelena: That’s even worse.
This line was used in the trailer for this episode and even there, it made me laugh but that trailer was just awful. The duel between the sisters was intense and a lot of fun to watch
The fight ends up in the clock tower and when it looks as though, Zelena may come out the victor and get Regina’s heart but no, Cora taught her one useful thing, Never take your heart to a witch fight. Zelena promises that she’ll get Regina’s heart and destroy her. We learn later from Zelena that what she’s planning isn’t a curse but a second chance. Let’s move onto the Fairy Tale plot.
We open in Oz, where a woodcutter and his wife come across a baby that had been dropped into Oz via cyclone and the wife wants to take the baby home but the woodcutter is scared of her because of what she can do. The wife decides to name the baby, Zelena. Some years later, we see a now grown Zelena with her foster father has grown to despise his daughter. Okay, this gave me a Wicked vibe in how Elphie’s dad never loved either. (BTW Elphie is 100% cooler than Zelena).
Zelena decides to leave her father, who had only treated her poorly and never truly loved her and goes to see the one person, that can actually help her, The Wizard of Oz. Which this sequence reminded me a lot of Oz: The Great and Powerful. Another Disney take on the works of Baum. Albeit, much better than what the show did here.
Small tangent but I don’t get the hate for that movie. I think it’s a great little prequel and it has one of the best Disney villains with Evanora and that’s more than I can say for Zelena. Anyways back to the review, The Wizard reveals to Zelena that she came from The Enchanted Forest and that Cora was her biological mother and that Regina is her younger sister and that Rumple is training her. The Wizard gives her, the silver slippers that she uses to go to The Enchanted Forest.
And when there, she comes across Rumple and she asks him to teach her and he at first, he agrees and things seem to rather swimmingly until Rumple refuses to let her be the one to cast The Dark Curse and he leaves to go teach Regina because he realizes that the thing that Zelena loves most is himself and he can’t allow himself to be sacrificed as he needs to cast the curse to find his son. Rumple tells Zelena that unless he can take her to a land without magic, she’s of no use to him. Zelena bitterly says that she did referencing the slippers and teleports away before Rumple can get his hands on them.
You shouldn’t have taught me all your tricks. And the next time, you will choose me.
Zelena uses the slippers to return back to Oz and demands that The Wizard take her back in time to stop Cora from abandoning her. The Wizard reveals that is even beyond his control and Zelena grows suspicious and tears the curtain and The Wizard is revealed to be Walsh aka the flying monkey that Emma was dating in New York City Serenade.
Speaking of which, we see that transformation take place in this episode and wait a minute, Walsh has been a flying monkey for centuries and yet his human form never aged. Okay, I’m over thinking this but do flying monkeys not age because Walsh in New York City Serenade looked exactly the same as he did here. Anyways, Zelena apparently got inspiration to do this from the flying monkey poster hanging behind Walsh. And there is one line of dialogue that Walsh that think sums up Once’s Wizard pretty well.
It’s all part of the act, but what I peddle is real!
That reallyÂ speaks to how The Wizard was usingÂ magic heirloomsÂ too fulfill something to make him happy and he only gave Zelena the slippers becauseÂ he asked her bring him back something of Rumple’s.Â Zelena was played by The Wizard and we saw the results of what happened here.
NoteÂ to self,Â if you ever come across a woman with magical powers that has a tragic past, DO NOT make her angry. I’ll say this much while I’m not the biggest Zelena fan in the world,Â she is a huge step down from Pan in the first half of the seasonÂ (Man I miss Pan,Â he was the greatest OUAT villain ever), this was a crucial episode that gave us her back story,Â whileÂ not great, it does help to fill in some gaps regarding her motives but… Zelena is a type of a character I feel the more, we learned about her, the less interesting she became.
ItÂ wasÂ nice to see the SlippersÂ make an appearance as theyÂ crucialÂ to OzÂ butÂ of courseÂ most peopleÂ thinkÂ Â of theÂ Â RubyÂ Red Slippers from the Judy Garland film even though they were originallyÂ silver in Baum’sÂ book.
OfÂ course, MGMÂ holds the copyright on the Ruby Red Slippers and that’s more than likely, why the show used the Silver Slippers.
ZelenaÂ playedÂ by Rebecca Mader
It’s all part of the act, but what I peddle is real!
MyÂ FinalÂ Thoughts
This episode at bestÂ is uneven,Â Zelena’s back story is good for the most part, save for her motivation but the StorybrookeÂ stuff is fantastic, especially the opening at Neal’s funeral and the duel betweenÂ Zelena and Regina.Â Â Again,Â this episode wasn’t bad but it could’ve been better but next time,Â join meÂ for whatÂ is easily,Â one of the best episodes of the series, on par with Quiet Minds asÂ we board…
TheÂ JollyÂ Roger