"Once Upon a Time" Lady of the Lake (TV Episode 2012) Poster

(TV Series)

(2012)

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9/10
Despite having too much stuff in a short time, Lady of the Lake is another solid continuation
After two solid episodes, the second season continues to be interesting. Lady of the Lake continues the journey of Emma Swan and her mother, Snow White (Mary Margaret) into the Enchanted Forest while David, Regina, and Henry continue to find a way to get them back to Storybrooke.

There are some nitpicks I do have with the episode. It does have too much stuff in such a short time and Sarah Bolger did disappointed me a little bit as Aurora even though it had something to do with the way she was written. That being said, everything else was fine.

Mark Isham continues to deliver some great music and the theme song continues to be haunting. The storyline continues to be engaging, most of the writing continues to be strong, we finally got to see more of Emma and Snow White's journey into the Enchanted Forest with Mulan and Aurora on a quest to get back home, the pacing's never dull, the performances, aside from Sarah Bolger, are still great especially the actor who played Lancelot, whose introduction her was solid. Also, the parallel between Storybrooke and the Enchanted Forest continues to be interesting and balances emotion and fantasy really well.

Overall, another solid continuation. Thumbs up! :)
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8/10
A beautiful if overstuffed lake
TheLittleSongbird12 January 2018
When 'Once Upon a Time' first started it was highly addictive and made the most of a truly great and creative premise. Really loved the idea of turning familiar fairy tales on their heads and putting own interpretations on them and the show early on clearly had clearly had a ball. Watched it without fail every time it came on and it was often a highlight of the week. Which was why it was sad when it ran out of ideas and lost its magic in the later seasons.

"Lady of the Lake" is a slight disappointment compared to the great previous two episodes, but is nonetheless very good all the same. It continues with the very promising, richer and more settled new direction 'Once Upon a Time' headed in the second season, new characters continue to impress and it is always good to see existing characters and plot lines expanded. For example there is more of Emma and Snow White, building upon what was shown in "Broken" and missed in "We are Both" and this is developing the two characters and their bond so well.

As to be expected, "Lady of the Lake" is a very handsomely mounted episode, with settings and costumes that are both colourful and atmospheric, not too dark or garish and never cookie-cutter. It is photographed beautifully and there were some make-up that suited the characters perfectly and pretty good effects work. The music is haunting, ethereal and cleverly used with a memorable main theme.

Humour, mysterious intrigue, charm and pathos are beautifully balanced, any signs of corniness that crept in here and there in the previous season are nowhere in sight here. The parallel of the two worlds is as ever seamlessly done, as is the balance of fantasy and human emotion.

Really enjoyed Lancelot's contribution here and Mulan, already a good character before, is getting stronger all the time. The existing characters, especially Snow White and Regina, continue to delight. The acting is very good, with only Sarah Bolger's still somewhat bland Aurora disappointing a little, then again this is very early days for the character and she needs more interesting material to shine properly.

For all the many great things that "Lady of the Lake" has, it is the first Season 2 episode to feel over-stuffed. Atmosphere is perfect, the fantasy elements are imaginative, the human drama is both funny and touching and there is not a dull moments, but there was too much going on in a short space of time.

Meaning that a couple of dramatic stretches were a little under-cooked. Would have put a little more thought into a few of the Storybrooke scenes, still interesting and entertaining but episodes before and since have done, and do, better jobs at having a great idea, with the master plan here, and advancing it forward. This wasn't quite done enough here.

Overall, beautiful and very well executed but would have been even better if it tried to do a little less. 8/10 Bethany Cox
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8/10
Unexpected Knight
danajs2420 August 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Weird that Lancelot is in the show now. Didn't expect that at all. Also very weird that kids are still going to school in Storybrooke, which means that certain people still have to pretend to be bus drivers and teachers. Shouldn't they all be figuring out how to get back to the enchanted forest? The king's ploy was savage as well, making Snow infertile. You really gotta feel bad for the Queen when she just wants the best for Henry, and all he does is betray her and treat her like garbage. He really sucks. Like really sucks. The ground of the forest in the enchanted forest is quite nice, no leaves or overgrown bushes or anything. I struggle to appreciate the line between fairy tales and being realistic. The ogre was pretty lame, as he seemed to change in size with every shot. I wonder if they're going to keep going with the Lancelot thread, going all the way to Arthur and Merlin. I really hope there'll be a Merlin, as he would be a heavy weight magic user, and a Merlin and Rumpelstiltskin magic showdown would be amazing. Also why would Cora run from Snow and Emma? She's infinitely more powerful than all of them put together. That tricky mother of Charming, sounds like something my grandmother would do trying to not accept money. Also completely forgot about the havoc the king could wreak on the town in Storybrooke.
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6/10
Lady of the Lake
tbmforclasstsar16 October 2012
Warning: Spoilers
At the short and sweet of it, last night's episode of Once Upon a Time was, for the most part, pretty cheesy, packed with nearly enough eye-roll-worthy moments to last it its entire season. And yet, despite all of them, I found myself not hating the episode.

That's not to say I foresee "Lady of the Lake" becoming one of the standout episodes of the season or anything, but what I did enjoy witnessing was the show finally deciding on its method of storytelling for the remainder of this new chapter. Only on its third episode, season two already seems to have established that it's definitely dividing its time between present day Storybrooke and a present day Enchanted Forest (a more appropriate name for "fairytale world," no?) in addition to the fairytale flashbacks. Now its challenge, something that it admittedly struggled with in its debut season, will be to focus its narrative on the stories and the characters that actually matter rather than trying to overload each episode with as many familiar fables as it can; a challenge I'm, so far, not convinced the show can yet master.

And there's proof of that in "Lady of the Lake;" you don't even need to make it to the first half of the episode to pick up on the fact that there's a lot going on. This week's flashback introduces Lancelot (Friday Night Lights' Sinqua Walls), in this story, a Knight of the Round Table that's "fallen from grace," if you will, and has joined forces with King George (Alan Dale) to hunt Charming. Kidnapping Snow in the midst of battle, Lancelot takes her to the king who tells her of Charming's twin brother and curses her with a potion that renders her unable to bear children.

Suddenly feeling guilty over the king's crime, Lancelot chooses to lead Snow to safety rather than harm, and accompanies her to a cabin where she is to meet her prince and his mother. Before they arrive however, Charming and his mom are ambushed by the king's troops, and despite the fact that Charming manages to take out every single one of his attackers (and look good doing it, I might add), his mother still takes a poison arrow to the heart. Snow and Lancelot arrive not long after and decide to travel with Charming and his mother to a lake whose waters possess healing powers, in the hopes that they may spare her life.

It's on this journey that Charming's mother learns of Snow's inability to have children, and before reaching the lake suggests Snow drink from its waters as well so that she may be rid of her curse—it's a plan that would've worked had they not arrived at the lake to find it completely dried up. Miraculously, Lancelot manages to discover a small sip of water inside of an old shell, and despite her pleas that Snow drink the water instead, Charming's mother consumes the sip—or so they think. Pretending the water's had no effect on her and insisting she see her son married before she dies, Charming's mother secretly convinces Lancelot to slip the magical water into the cup Snow and Charming drink from during their ceremony (which Lancelot performs, of course), so that Snow drinks the water instead. Fulfilling her last wish, she dies shortly afterwards, breaking Snow of her curse and leaving her son free to father—you guessed it—a little girl.

And that's just one plot strand. In present-day Enchanted Forest, Emma and Snow are released from their prison after officially meeting Regina's mother, Cora, and are temporarily reunited with Snow's old friend Lancelot. Shortly afterwards, the two set off on a journey into ogre-infested lands with Mulan and Aurora to Snow's old castle in the hopes of retrieving a wardrobe that may be able to return them back to Storybrooke–the same wardrobe that transported Emma to the "real world" when she was just a baby. But before they can arrive, Snow must save her daughter from an ogre (naturally), one that looks much less worse than it could thanks to the show's bigger budget. Surviving the face-off, the four women finally make it to the home Snow and Charming once shared, and mother and daughter share a tender moment in Emma's old nursery before Lancelot unexpectedly shows up, acting a little too out of the ordinary. Snow, sensing danger, draws her sword, and Lancelot is revealed to be Cora in disguise. Admitting she killed Lancelot a long time ago, Cora makes it known that she, too, has a desire for the wardrobe, but the ladies aren't giving it up without a fight. Managing to deflect Cora's own magic, Emma unfortunately sets fire to their only potential means home, but she and Snow agree that they can still try and seek someone out with enough magic to restore it.

To read the rest of the review (IMDb form too short) visit: http://custodianfilmcritic.com/once-upon-a-time-2-3-lady-of-the-lake/
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