And the puppies.... (who will start going to their new homes this weekend!!!!) ... Oh, puppies love to play in puddles. Splashing. Chasing kitties. And toddlers. It has been officially determined that puppies love water!
For the record: Let me just say that at no point in this blog post do I EVER equate Mary Connealy to a really ugly animal. Because that's just SO STINKIN' MEAN.
And I'm the nice Seeker! ;)
Regina Mills/Queen Regina/Wicked Stepmother/Trophy Wife/Dutiful Daughter/Wounded Soul
Now there's a balanced character archetype.
And here she is in her Evil Fairytale Glory:
And here's a You Tube link that takes you to a short montage of Regina...
Click here and then come back!!!!
If you have no idea what I'm talking about, first: WHAT PLANET ARE YOU LIVING ON?????
|The planet Mars, inhabited by tiny bits and bytes and mites....|
For the record again: Queen Regina/Mayor Mills is played brilliantly by Lana Parrilla, one of the stars of ABC's "Once Upon a Time" a crazy fun fairy-tale spin show that puts most fairy tail movies to shame.
First: Wonderfully taut and tight writing by the writers that brought us "LOST"... Now, I didn't like "LOST" because it had no point, no center, no gravity and it felt hodge podge... And good fantasy should have threads that make some kind of sense, that intrinsically weave a story through circumstance, emotion, relativity and empathy. If you are creating Netherworlds, trying to become too complex can be your downfall. Readers want to understand, to get lost in the 'other place', but that's hard to do if your names.... (Ollibuf, Ornswaggleov, Diaphapheadraanna, etc.) do not bear pronouncing much less remembering. Some fantasy writers/authors get lost in the setting and their ability to use far-out names and made-up governmental regiments. They forget to write a great book. That's a newbie mistake, because if you skip back to great fantasy works, they are amazingly simple... Good vs. Evil. And eventually, Good wins.
So it's okay to NOT CREATE an entire new language, name system, solar system, on top of writing a story. Use the craft carefully, and that's what the writers of "Once Upon a Time" have done so well, while totally twisting and adding to the fairy tales we thought we knew.
"Once Upon a Time" borrowed concepts from Brothers Grimm, Sisters Grimm, children's books and the writers' own imaginations and layered the show with a great cast of modern day characters trapped in a fictional town in Maine. "Storybrooke" is a town without magic, a town where time stands still, a town whose captive storybook characters in kept in place by some sort of invisible force field.... But today we're writers, focused on character development and the Ultimate Queen Award must go to Queen Regina....
The writers make it easy to hate Regina. She's a user. An abuser. A taker. She is completely manic and undeniably clever, and the writers have used P-A-T-I-E-N-C-E as one of her fortes. Why is this important? Because it's subtle. You don't have it in-your-face.... Like her savage ways of removing living, beating hearts.... Or her sheer delight when besting a foe... Her utter disregard for children's hopes and dreams....
No. Regina's patience to horde her mental, emotional and physical weapons is a huge part of her success but it's not lauded. Or spoken of. Or alluded to. It's simply there, and that's what makes it brilliant. Quietly layering your characters with qualities that speak to a reader's heart, mind or emotions is the gift of great story-telling. If you MUST explain something, you should probably do a re-write...
We all know that the wicked stepmother/evil queen hated Snow White. While young and foolish, we thought 'twas merely vanity..... The mirror bespoke Snow's beauty and that became her undoing.
Obviously we were mistaken because now we know that the young Regina was the victim of child abuse herself.... At the hands of a magic-wielding, evil, ladder-climbing, stop-at-nothing-to-make-my-daughter-queen mother....
|Who would have thought the sweet Barbara Hershey would be an EVIL QUEEN MOTHER????|
Drama begets drama......
After months of viewing, we build some sympathy for "Regina, the child" in this late-season episode. This is her Darth Vader-like background, a glimpse of why we become who we are... and the choices and roads not taken.
Those old paths are the bricks of the future, right? On those cornerstones we build characters, setting, plot, but not overloading the story with backstory????
Occasionally we would glimpse Regina's pain in her gaze, her eyes, always averted from others, lest they see... but the viewer (or reader) could see it. But they were teensy-tinsy increments, subtle and short.... barely notable. But there.
Regina will stop at nothing. Not back then, in fairy-tale land. Not now in Storybrooke... always plotting, scheming, staying one step ahead. But every villain has a nemesis.
Regina has several.
Rumplestiltskin/Mr. Gold, played by Richard Carlyle:
|As current-day pawn shop owner and lawyer... (grinning here) Mr. Gold|
|And as Rumplestiltskin in fairy-tale land of lore....|
Come on in! Coffee's on and the conversation's startin'!