A television birthday

Much as I wish otherwise, Once Upon a Time is not great television. It holds my interest by being a reworking of fairy tales, and it’s a good program to knit to because I can ignore it when the knitting gets tricky without losing track of the plot. But I wish to give credit when appropriate. In this evening’s episode when Snow (or Mary Margaret, whatever we’re supposed to call her) opened her birthday present, she did so by ripping the gift wrap off, just like we do in real life. This may be the first time I’ve seen a present opened normally on TV. Usually a TV birthday present comes in a box with a separately-wrapped lid that can be opened and reopened as many times as needed until the scene is successfully completed. So congratulations to Once Upon a Time for daring to have a “realistically-wrapped” present!

More seriously: it’s clear that Snow doesn’t like birthday celebrations, not even anything as simple as Charming (or David, whatever we’re supposed to call him) making breakfast for her. We learn in this episode that her mother died on her birthday, so her discomfort is understandable. But when he asked her about it, I was thinking, Because regardless of what the culture was like in the Enchanted Forest, you now live in a society where no woman is supposed to admit to any birthday after her 29th. Heck, it probably wasn’t much better back home—we’ve hardly seen any characters there older than 30-something, and most of the ones we have seen were evil. And sure, Snow has ended up about the same age as her daughter, which most women here can’t manage (darn lack of magic!), but do you really need to ask why she’s not ecstatic that it’s her birthday?

Maybe I need to start knitting to programs that inspire no thinking whatsoever. 🙂

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