Once Upon a Time: Child of the Moon
by Justin Jasso (@jjasso007)
As we continue the Season Two theme of delving into the backstories of our beloved characters of Fairy Tale Land and Storybrooke, this week we get a first-hand look at our beloved lady in red, Ruby!
In Storybrooke, Billy, who used to be Gus, the mouse who lived in Cinderella’s pantry, introduced himself to Ruby and asked her out. Ruby turns him down, saying it’s a bad night. Indeed it is as it is the first full moon since the curse has been broken and Ruby has no idea if she will transform into a wolf or not. She and her grandmother are reinforcing the freezer in the diner to make a cage to hold her just in case. The red cloak she used to wear to protect her from changing has gone missing.
In the morning, Granny arrived at the restaurant and found the cage open with claw marks in the walls and door. She and David go into the woods and find Ruby, asleep. She doesn’t remember anything and fears she did something terrible. David gets a call and has to leave. They go with him and discover an abandoned tow truck. Billy has been mutilated and lies dead. Ruby freaks out, believing she killed him.
Ruby asked to be locked up to protect the townspeople. David locks her up, thinking it will keep her safe. Spencer shows up and says it was Ruby, as the wolf, who committed murder. He wants David to hand her over and let the town decide her fate. David refuses and Spencer threatens to incite the townsfolk. He does and when they storm the jail, Ruby is gone. David has moved her and hides her in the library with Belle.
Ruby wants Belle to leave for her own safety. Belle wants to stay, believing the chains will keep her safe. Ruby tricks Belle and instead chains her up so Ruby can leave. She intends to let the town see her as she is and if they kill her, Ruby believes it will atone for all she’s done. David and Gran find Ruby’s cloak and a bloody axe in the trunk of Spencer’s car. He set things up to frame Ruby and make David look inept at protecting the town.
The town’s people find the wolf and just as Spencer and the town are about to put Ruby down, David intervenes and explains what Spencer did. He stops the town and the then talks to Ruby, still in wolf form, and explains what has happened and that she didn’t kill anyone. During the confrontation, Spencer has fled.
Ruby uses her animal senses to track Spencer. He is standing in front of a fire and torments David by tossing the last of the hatter’s magic hat in the flames. Ruby asks David to call Granny and have her go unchain Belle. Now knowing she can control her inner wolf, she takes the coat off to go run freely as a wolf.
In Fairy Tale Land, Snow White and Red Riding Hood are running through dark forest, pursued by soldiers. The moon was full when Red noticed her hood was torn and she would probably turn into a wolf. She wanted Snow to hide for her own protection. She agreed but unknown to the women, someone was watching.
Red awakens, removes her cloak to wash up and the man who was watching runs off with it. She chases him and he threatens to burn it and she begs him not to. He says he recognizes a wolf when he sees one. He flashes his wolf’s eyes at her. His name is Quinn and he is a wolf too. He says he can teach her to control the wolf. She follows him to an underground lair, the grand hall of a castle that sunk long ago. Everyone there is a wolf. He takes her to see Anita who turns out to be Red’s mother.
Anita tells Red that Granny has been lying to her since she stole Red as a baby. She says embracing the wolf is a better than trying to deny it. She needs help to embrace her true nature. Anita will teach her but first tells her to get rid of the cloak. She tells her to give into the wolf and not fight it. It’s the key to staying in control. Red listens and allows herself to turn into a wolf that night and in the morning, she remembers everything. She doesn’t have to be afraid anymore.
Snow White stumbles on the lair shortly after this. Quinn nearly stranglers her but Anita orders him to stop. Snow learns about the pack and that Red s going to stay with them. Snow is happy that she found a place where she can feel at home. As they hug goodbye, the Queen’s men who followed Snow, arrive and shoot Quinn with an arrow.
After killing the soldiers, Anita orders Snow tied up and tells the others they will feast on her when the moon rises and tells Red to kill her. Snow gets loose and Anita gets stabbed while in wolf form with a poker. Snow feels bad that Red lost her family today but Red says she didn’t lose her family today; she protected it. Her mother wanted her to choose between being a wolf and a human.
Meanwhile, Henry has been having nightmares so Regina takes him to see Gold to understand what happened. He says there is an in-between world where those under a sleeping curse wait till woken. He gives Henry a necklace that will protect him when he sleeps. Aurora continues to have the nightmares, too. In her last one, a boy is there, holding a necklace. He tells her not be afraid and that his name is Henry. When she wakes, she tells Mary Margaret and Emma. Emma is freaked out that Aurora is dreaming about her son.
‘Child of the Moon’ is interesting and a good enough filler episode. It was nice to see some back story for Red and we can expect more of the same for other characters going forward, I’m sure. The most intriguing part is when Henry appears to nightmare-tormented Aurora. Apparently Henry and Aurora both are sharing the same dream of a burning room after recently awakening from the Sleeping Curse. Henry, however, now can control the nightmare and communicate with Aurora back in Fairytale Land. That will come in very handy in coordinating a way back home to Storybrooke.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars