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Prince Charming: I will find them. I will always find them!

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A place to talk all things Josh Dallas; Prince Charming/David Nolan, plus his twin (or, in Leroy's words, "David, James, AND Charming???"); and, most importantly, monitor Charming's hair on a regular basis.

I almost subtitled this thread "And what, send it to her in box???", but figured it would be lost on anyone who hasn't seen 3x10. Plus, the existing subtitle is just so iconic. And a shout-out to TWOP's initial subtitle, "What's 28 Years When You Have Eternal Love?"

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I love Daddy Charming was next in line in getting his thread back, the new title (so very him and full of win!), and the acknowledgement that monitoring his hair-styling is of the essence going forward. Priorities, I say.

I do hope we get more frequent/numerous Charming-centric episodes, as 3x14 really reminded me (as it did a whole bunch of people, if the TWoP thread is any indication) how great he can be when the writers actually put some effort into the character and give Josh Dallas material to work with. Ditto for Snow, whose current Idiot Ball-holding is almost criminal.

Also, not sure if anyone agrees, but I would love to see the show revisit Prince James the Jerk either for plot or character exploration purposes, via comparison/contrast with David. The sheer weirdness of seeing Josh D in full princely attire and acting so Charmless in Tiny was one of the great things about the episode, IMO.

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I am always up for more James. I'd love it if Charming spent an entire episode just running away from people who mistook him for the twin that had done them wrong.

King George's kingdom apparently borders Snow's. I can understand Snow never meeting James because that could be explained away by her leading a sheltered life, but I could see him interacting with Regina or Rumple or even lesser characters like Belle, Aurora, or Ariel. But Charming has now met all of those minor characters, and they've never alluded to meeting him before, so it's probably not going to happen. Actually, my original speculation for Ariel was that she had been in love with James but he had done as his father asked and what Charming couldn't do and chosen the good of the kingdom over his love for the mermaid, and this was going to be revealed when Ariel ran into Charming in Neverland and punched him in the face. What can I say? It was a long Summer and they kept telling us that every new character was going to be connected to a main character, which did indeed turn out to be the case, just not for Charming. Instead, everyone must be connected to Regina and Rumple.

Anyway, I loved how they delved into Charming's psyche in The Tower, but I'd still like to get an early-Charming fairyback if the show ever goes back to pre-curse 1.0 flashbacks.

 

most importantly, monitor Charming's hair on a regular basis.

I love Daddy Charming was next in line in getting his thread back, the new title (so very him and full of win!), and the acknowledgement that monitoring his hair-styling is of the essence going forward.

Let the first meeting of the Hair Club for Charming on previously.tv commence! My favorite Charming hair is still his Season One hair, especially circa The Shepherd, but not the first flashback actual shepherd hair. That was just wrong.

Edited by InsertWordHere
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If Regina really had her heart set on being an irredeemable villain, she would have found some way to curse David Nolan with that hair and I would never forgive her. Heck, even Snow might find that unforgivable.

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I shouldn't try and make theories up when it's so late at night for me, but between all the James/David dichotomy and all the stuff at the Wish thread, I can't get the idea of an inevitable Curse Reloaded and what said new curse would do to each character out of my head. Crazy, possibly bad fanfic-like theorizing ahead. 

Specifically related to Charming, maybe having him (1) think/believe he was actually James all along, (2) have the twins' souls/minds/however-they-decide-to-call-it traded somehow and have James wreak emotional havoc as a Magnificent Bastard for a while (my Charmed roots are showing here, something for which I fully apologize), or maybe even a shared mind/split personality where both brothers interact inside David's head. Yeah, my comicbook roots are also showing, as that last one is not easily conveyed without focusing the camera work/writing on the personality split/mental dialogue. (I did warn you. Heh).

On a lighter note, the Charming Hair Club totally has to be a thing. I need to do the absolutely gruelling task of reviewing his looks through the years, but the one InsertWordHere linked to (the first one, not the funny shepherd one which is clearly an in-joke and shouldn't trascend that status, EVER) and the one he's sported since season 3B began are definite favorites :)

ETA: LOL at the Wig of Doom being an elligible Curse-trait for poor David. I can not imagine how much they must have teased Josh over that look while filming.

Edited by samhalliwell

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Anyway, I loved how they delved into Charming's psyche in The Tower, but I'd still like to get an early-Charming fairyback if the show ever goes back to pre-curse 1.0 flashbacks.

I don't think we'll ever get it, but I've always wanted fairybacks to a) Charming telling Snow his real name/background and b) freaking out when he realizes that he, a shepherd, is suddenly running a kingdom. I mean, it's such natural stuff to see, and yet!

If Regina really had her heart set on being an irredeemable villain, she would have found some way to curse David Nolan with that hair and I would never forgive her. Heck, even Snow might find that unforgivable.

Ha, so true! Snow would never have looked twice at David with that hair. Boy, it was awful.

WELL, since you guys are TWISTING MY ARM to talk Charming's hair, I guess I can! Here are some personal faves. I still think the hair/stubble combination in Snow Falls is probably the best look on the show he's had to date (and shout-out to wet Charming and lovestruck Charming), and the look he sported through most of the rest of 1a and 1b--particularly in That Still Small Voice in the scene outside--was also good (I'm so glad they've let Charming sport some stubble again). His Land Without Magic hair is also pretty good, but my heart will always beat for his Heart of Darkness look. Actually, scratch what I said above, Heart of Darkness might be my favorite Charming. I think being all bruised made him like 50% hotter, and he's just so pretty in those scenes--everything is working. Even the manly tear.

 

At any rate, his 2x01 and 2x02 hair was pretty good, too. But then in 2x03 they have him that awful, awful buzz cut (super unflattering to his face) and his hair didn't really get good again until around Selfless, Brave and True and the S2 finale. I pretty much completely disliked his 3a hair, but the 3b hair is starting to grow on me, especially when they let it be all floofy and in 3x14, where David was SUPER HOT when pissed.

And now that I've written a dissertation on Charming's hair, I should go do my work. But I regret NONE of the time spent looking through caps. :D

1x16 has the best Snowing kiss, too.

Edited by stealinghome
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Stealinghome, I would totally subscribe to your newsletter.  I like the 3b longish on top and short on the sides thing. He looks more like my husband and makes me feel less guilty. LOL

Something that has come up in discussions of The Tower is how that would have been a good time to see David's fear of being a good leader. I thought was covered pretty well in We Are Both. 

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I wish they'd let Charming be a dad more often.  Everytime the writing gave him that opportunity Josh Dallas rose to the occasion.  I'd really like Emma and David to have a relationship a la Veronica and Keith Mars.  That would be pretty awesome.

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Something that has come up in discussions of The Tower is how that would have been a good time to see David's fear of being a good leader. I thought was covered pretty well in We Are Both.

I've always had mixed feelings on that. I think We Are Both maybe started off being about Charming's lack of confidence about being a leader (his aborted speech in the mirror is too cute--"I did the fighting, Snow did the talking"), but by the end, to me, it became more about David needing to prioritize the needs of the town above his own personal desires. Which is part of being a leader, certainly, and I do think the way he kind of straightens up after his speech is supposed to indicate that he got a new infusion of confidence in his ability to lead, but I still think that the episode got it a bit muddled. The Big Lesson ended up being more like "be a ruler first, take care of your personal ish second" to me. If the fairybacks in We Are Both had been about Charming freaking out about suddenly being a ruler, it would have made what they were going for with the Storybrooke half of the episode much clearer, and I've always been bummed that that's not what they did. I kind of understand why they wanted to do the Regina fairybacks that they did in that episode, but they missed a real opportunity there for Charming (and goodness knows it's not like Regina didn't get fairyback after freaking fairyback that season anyway).

More generally, I think I've always wanted a fairyback of that kind for Charming because until pretty recently he's been desperately underwritten/undercharacterized, and that seemed like a natural, obvious character beat that could be compelling. Have him talk about being a peasant and seeing the effect poor leadership has on the everyday man, and how he fears he'll be just as bad as George, etc. Have him feel totally inadequate and need to gain his confidence. It would give his character a lot of depth. (Plus, I can't believe we've never seen him telling Snow his real name. Come on, that scene is comedy GOLD. That's also a scene we really need.)

Speaking of his speech, I forgot how yummy he was in it, so have more caps.

I wish they'd let Charming be a dad more often.  Everytime the writing gave him that opportunity Josh Dallas rose to the occasion.

Agreed. More than that, I think being a family man (and also a badass) is where the Charming character really shines, in a way that doesn't necessarily happen for Snow.

Edited by stealinghome
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Agreed. More than that, I think being a family man (and also a badass) is where the Charming character really shines, in a way that doesn't necessarily happen for Snow.

 

Snow is very far from being my favorite character.  I just find her incredibly fickle. I want her to shut up more often than not this season. I find Charming a lot more realistic in his internal struggles.  Emma is very much her father's daughter, while Henri paralleled Mary Margaret a lot.

Also, bring on the Charming/Hook bromance because that was just a nice budding type friendship.  I just like how Hook doesn't give much of a rat's ass that Charming is a "prince" and Charming has seen beyond Hook's devil may care attitude.

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And now that I've written a dissertation on Charming's hair, I should go do my work. But I regret NONE of the time spent looking through caps. :D

Best post ever. Your time was not wasted. I actually had never realized how much his hair changes throughout the show. I really like the caps you had from the most recent episodes. Pissed off David is indeed hot.

If Zelena took Charming's courage with his sword, does that mean he was the bravest of anyone in Storybrooke? If I was going to give him a superlative, I would have given him most optimistic, or the person with the most faith. David's certainly brave, but it just wasn't how I would have defined him. Of course, they probably just knew which actors/characters they needed and lined things up with the Wizard of Oz, so I guess I shouldn't read too much into it.

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Thank you, stealinghome, for that absolutely amazing and not at all time-wasting screencap recollection. Now I'm left wondering: is it possible Charming's had more different hairstyles than Snow throughout the show? I know that with all the wigs and up-do's it's hard to outdo women in the hair department, period, but since 3B started it's been bugging me that Ginny seems to be limited to non-flattering wigs and short-short haircuts. (I know, curse stuff, but whatever, one has to be superficial every once in a while).

The David/Hook bromance needs to keep up, stat. They just seem to have these built-in little moments where they really sell the odd friendship angle without it being slammed on our faces. I suppose that's more about the writers finding a way to let the characters actually interact more often than the speed of the plot allows them to, but it'd still be nice.

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Excellent Charming hair analysis, stealinghome!

The David/Hook bromance needs to keep up, stat

I loved it when David put his hand on Hook's shoulder to comfort him in Quiet Minds. Such a little thing, but so touching.

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I loved it when David put his hand on Hook's shoulder to comfort him in Quiet Minds. Such a little thing, but so touching.

I'll definitely have to rewatch the episode, because even though I do remember that bit between David and Hook, what I remember the most about that scene is the (weird and somewhat misplaced) absolute devastation Snow and Belle had going on. Was gonna get lengthy on how I see Belle and Snow's moment as weird, but I'll take it to the episode or Neal thread.

Back on topic, my David-bias became clear today, what with his backseat-taking and all. The Tower may have had something to do with it. All the Daddy and Daughter moments were absolute gold, among other nice bits in an overall disconcerting episode.

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I loved that he had another nice conversation with Emma in this one.  

I loved how he totally understood what Emma was feeling regarding Henry and NYC before she even said. He'd know, considering it's what he and Snow did for Emma.

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WELL, since you guys are TWISTING MY ARM to talk Charming's hair, I guess I can! Here are some personal faves. I still think the hair/stubble combination in Snow Falls is probably the best look on the show he's had to date (and shout-out to wet Charming and lovestruck Charming), and the look he sported through most of the rest of 1a and 1b--particularly in That Still Small Voice in the scene outside--was also good (I'm so glad they've let Charming sport some stubble again). His Land Without Magic hair is also pretty good, but my heart will always beat for his Heart of Darkness look. Actually, scratch what I said above, Heart of Darkness might be my favorite Charming. I think being all bruised made him like 50% hotter, and he's just so pretty in those scenes--everything is working. Even the manly tear.

 

At any rate, his 2x01 and 2x02 hair was pretty good, too. But then in 2x03 they have him that awful, awful buzz cut (super unflattering to his face) and his hair didn't really get good again until around Selfless, Brave and True and the S2 finale. I pretty much completely disliked his 3a hair, but the 3b hair is starting to grow on me, especially when they let it be all floofy and in 3x14, where David was SUPER HOT when pissed.

And now that I've written a dissertation on Charming's hair, I should go do my work. But I regret NONE of the time spent looking through caps. :D

1x16 has the best Snowing kiss, too.

This is basically the greatest post in the history of forum posts. Encore, encore.

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The sheer effort put into that post is astounding. I'm pretty sure anyone who isn't a fan of the show might consider it a bit of an exageration (and not actually open every link, to their own disgrace), but seeing how there's no one like that here I'm also sure the "I REGRET NOTHING!" motto is in full force. Daddy Charming will do that. Heh.

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stealinghome, fantastic post!!! LOL

For my taste, 3x14 mirrored David's hair was the best. Actually, no, not only the hair... The bad boy look, the little beard (ok, I have a thing for beards... Oh, hello, Hook!!)...

 

Ok, not bad for my first post ever in a OUAT forum!

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1x16 has the best Snowing kiss, too.

Okay, so I know it isn't about Charming's hair, but that picture made me remember the good ol' days when Snow's Fairytale wig didn't look like a rat's nest...

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stealinghome, fantastic post!!! LOL

For my taste, 3x14 mirrored David's hair was the best. Actually, no, not only the hair... The bad boy look, the little beard (ok, I have a thing for beards... Oh, hello, Hook!!)...

 

Ok, not bad for my first post ever in a OUAT forum!

He did look great in 3x14, either princely, Davidly or generally dissheveled. Heh.

And yeah, Sabs, they really should stop half-assing Snow's hairstyling, which I have no why idea they have been doing for far too long.

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From the Unpopular Opinion thread.

 

SHANNA MARIE, ON 24 JUN 2014 - 11:29 PM, SAID:
I think David gets a bad rap. I'm not sure why or how he got that "Prince Dullard" label, when he seems to be one of the better strategic thinkers in the group. He's the one who came up with a plan that outwitted Rumple so they were able to have him imprisoned. He killed the dragon with strategy, not brute force. And it's all the more impressive when you realize that he didn't get the kind of training and education a prince would get, that he was thrown into all this cold.

According to a recent discussion I had with my father (who's a big connaisseur in history, militar history and strategy), in medieval times shepherds were also warriors (but warriors were not shepherds). If you think about it, they had to protect the cattle from men and other animals and they needed to be trained in combat and to have some strategical skills, in order to prevent the attacks.

So, no wonder that David, former shepherd, knows how to handle a sword and is a strategic thinker.

 

That the writers knew about shepherds being warriors, though, is something I wonder about!

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That the writers knew about shepherds being warriors, though, is something I wonder about!

Oh, I totally doubt it. BUT it's always been my headcanon that Charming hates pirates/thieves so much because they robbed his farm (or tried to, at least) all the time when he was a kid. Maybe that is where some of his mad fighting skills came from.

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It really annoys me that the writers have taken the fandom's "Prince Dullard" label and decided to have the characters snark about ti on screen (like when Regina was like "I didn't even notice a difference" when he was made stone). If a loyal, caring, loving husband and father is "dull", then sign me up for dull. I think David is totally amazing and it could take so little effort for the writers to show it on screen. Already, Daddy Charming scenes are some of the show's best. When they allow him to be funny, especially with/about Hook, he's hilarious. Just because his kind of humor isn't insulting like other people who shall not be named, doesn't mean it's not great. I think two of the funniest lines of S3 were "In case your good looks fail you" and "You think I'm interested in Hook? Emma, I'm a married man.". They were funny without insulting anyone, which is something the writers have sometimes problems with. That's the hardest - and best - kind of humor.

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So, no wonder that David, former shepherd, knows how to handle a sword and is a strategic thinker.

Well, the Biblical shepherd David took out Goliath.

 

But there's a difference between being able to defend a farm and being able to wage kingdom-wide war that involves commanding soldiers, so I find it rather impressive that he was able to jump so easily into the role of prince that it doesn't seem like anyone considered that he might be an imposter. He might have known how to fight, but I wonder what kind of education he had.

 

I also like that most of the time he's able to be good without being stupid about it. He's pragmatic good and thinks more in terms about defending the helpless than in black-and-white "good people don't do these things" terms. Like, being willing to execute Regina for crimes like mass murder. How many lives would have been saved if Snow had let him carry through with that?

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It really annoys me that the writers have taken the fandom's "Prince Dullard" label and decided to have the characters snark about ti on screen (like when Regina was like "I didn't even notice a difference" when he was made stone). If a loyal, caring, loving husband and father is "dull", then sign me up for dull. I think David is totally amazing and it could take so little effort for the writers to show it on screen. 

Hear, hear!!  I totally agree, especially considering what short shrift dad's on TV often get.  More often than not they're portrayed as clueless, bumbling, slovenly over-grown children.  Daddy Charming rocks!

Edited by angelwoody
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Especially when he's IN Daddy Mode.  He is actually the better parent as far as Emma's concerned, in that he definitely cares for her (and in way, really does still see her as his little girl), but at the same time recognizes and accepts that she is a grown woman who made a life for herself without him for 28 years and respects her need to make her own decisions and therefore treats her as an adult. He's also been much better at bonding with Henry than Snow has (have we ever yet seen her try to connect with Henry as his grandmother?).

 

He's not perfect by a long shot, but he's one hell of a father, in my opinion, because he gets it right.

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Well at least Charming was probably one of the only things the headwriters fixed in S3, by giving him some scenes with Emma, and also some increased screentime (even though he was used as a prop for Hook's redemption in 3A).

 

I've liked him from the beginning, and I was so happy to see more of him this season, and they didn't character-assassinate him.  That's already a big deal on this show.

Edited by Camera One
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He is actually the better parent as far as Emma's concerned, in that he definitely cares for her (and in way, really does still see her as his little girl), but at the same time recognizes and accepts that she is a grown woman who made a life for herself without him for 28 years and respects her need to make her own decisions and therefore treats her as an adult.

I think this was wonderfully emblematized in his dream in 'The Tower,' too, where you had Emma all dressed up for her first ball and wanting to dance with her daddy, but it was ADULT Emma, not his vision of what an 8-year-old Emma would've looked like. You got the sense of how much he loved her and wished they could have had those moments, but also that he takes Emma for who she is now, that his vision of/relationship with Emma isn't really clouded by the could-have-beens in the same way Snow's is.

You know, one thing I've been considering recently is, if Emma *had* grown up with Snowing, would her relationship with David as an adult be all that different from what it is now? I actually don't know that it would be. Whereas I think it's very obvious Emma and Snow's would be so different. There's something there I can't put my finger on, but.

I do agree that Charming is one of the things the writers fixed in S3 relative to S2, especially in terms of his relationship with Emma. As you have to imagine Ginny will be on light duty in 4A, still recovering from pregnancy and birth, I hope they continue to build Charming and Emma's relationship.

Edited by stealinghome
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I rewatched the beginning of "Broken" yesterday and this time I noticed David's reaction to seeing Emma for the first time after the curse broke. Josh Dallas acted the hell out of that scene albeit in a very subtle way. Emma & David in Season 1 had a limited relationship - One in which Emma was not at all impressed by him and he knew it. So I remember watching and being all about the Emma/Mary Margaret reaction and not really caring about David at their first meeting. But watching David's face and reaction was so nice this time around because I saw he was crying and he desperately wanted to just grab his daughter and hug her and knew he couldn't. And now that I like David, Real!David, not Cursed!David, it makes that moment so much more poignant to watch.

 

That episode in general really showed how much better David understands Emma than Snow. He was more willing to back off and let Emma try to process what happened than to push something that very clearly wasn't going to happen. His approach has been way more effective than Snow's even to this date, and it was all set up in Broken.

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You know, I also love the hell out of that scene because the different looks on Snow and David's faces are a great indicator of how different their relationships with Emma will grow to be. Because Snow's face (and Ginnifer Goodwin did some great work here) is constantly cycling between overwhelming joy but also a profound sadness and sense of loss. You can tell that even as she's just so overjoyed to finally have found Emma, she's also already so sad about missing Emma's life, already mourning the fact that she'll never get those 28 years back. Snow's already thinking about what she's irretrievably lost, even when she's just found it. And that's mostly been the story of Snow and Emma's relationship ever since, you know? Always haunted by the could-have-beens, Snow's sense of wanting somethig more.

 

On the other hand, David, to me, looks like he's just absolutely, utterly in awe of his beautiful, perfect, precious daughter. He's just gazing at her like he can't get enough of looking at her, like he could stare at her for the rest of his life and not ever get tired of it. Like, you can practically see the stars in his eyes and the thought bubble that's totally fangirling over Emma. ("This is my daughter. She's PERFECT. She's amazing. Isn't she so awesome? She's the most perfect person who ever lived. I want to be Emma when I grow up. I'm so proud that she grew up to be such an amazing person. PERFECT.") The moment's bittersweet, of course--he's got tears in his eyes just as much as Snow does--but he's completely bowled over by love and adoration, and you can practically see the moment where his world shifts and Emma becomes its center. And that's been the story of their relationship, too--while I agree that S2 woefully underdeveloped them, David's never lived in his regrets when it comes to Emma--or rather, he's never let his regrets get in the way of their relationship)--he's just loved her for who she is and supported her no matter what. He's pretty much the family's rock. And also he jumps in front of fireballs for her on a pretty frequent basis, which is also awesome.

 

(And, heh, even the way they hug Emma reflects how different they are. Snow goes in for the big, Mama Bear, "I am never letting you go" hug. David takes a slower approach, more the cautious one-armed hug. I've also always loved his little exhale as he lowers his cheek to Emma's hair. Like he's finally complete and happy now that he has her back, like that last missing piece has finally clicked into place.)

 

I just have so many Daddy Charming feels, okay?!?!

Edited by stealinghome
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I liked how you described and contrasted both Snow and Charming's differences with Emma, stealinghome.  I do love Charming's relationship with Emma and his personality just makes it "work" easier.  The differences are complex and deep, and explaining Snow's and Charming's mindsets elevates it above a competition of who loves who more, or who's a better parent.  Both Snow and Charming love Emma in different ways, and have different emotional mechanisms to work through the loss of time with Emma.

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Snow has always leaned towards the depressive, pessimistic side of things, so I've always thought that she dwells so much on the loss, she can't see to focus on what she has in front of her. She keeps trying to change Emma to fit what she wants and needs while David has always just been so happy to have Emma in his life at all. Maybe it's because he got to see who she was as more of a casual acquaintance and was impressed with what he saw of her as Cursed!David, but didn't have relationship expectations like Snow did. So when the curse broke and he realized that the little baby he'd put in the wardrobe and the kick ass independent sheriff were the same person, he was just like "Damn, that awesome woman is my little girl!" He just wants her to do what makes her happy. And he's so good at letting that show without pressuring Emma into feeling like she needs to do something to gain his approval. Their little talk down at the waterfront in "The New Neverland" was just so David. Telling Emma to just give a shot to lunch with Neal so that she doesn't throw something away because of fear. Now obviously, I still think the Charmings had the wrong end of the stick with regards to Neal, but David was giving Emma some pretty good advice without pushing her or making her feel like he would disapprove if she made a different choice from the one he wanted her to make.  

 

I love their dynamic so much and it's one of the few bright spots in 3B. And it's fun to go back and watch earlier episodes with them trying to build a relationship when I like David and am not influenced by my negative feelings for Cursed!David. It's also kind of funny because I now have the opposite reaction to watching Mary Margaret interact with Emma in those same scenes.

Edited by KAOS Agent
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Well at least Charming was probably one of the only things the headwriters fixed in S3, by giving him some scenes with Emma, and also some increased screentime (even though he was used as a prop for Hook's redemption in 3A).

I've been thinking about that, and I don't think saving David had anything to do with Hook's redemption. Even at his worst, I can't imagine Hook letting someone who wasn't his enemy or standing between him and his enemy die of dreamshade poison. Hook had already returned to Neverland on a mission to save a kid he didn't even know. Saving David didn't change anything for him. What changed was David. He was the one who was kind of being a jerk to Hook, in spite of Hook volunteering to use his ship and the magic bean he could have used to get home to help them. Being saved and learning how Hook knew what to do (the death of his brother) forced David to see Hook in a new light. Plus, the whole poison arc and David's willingness to self-sacrifice, to put the good of his grandson ahead of his own life by not wanting to distract the others or veer from their mission on what he believed to be a futile attempt to save him, set up his later sacrifice of his own heart to cast the curse. So while we learned a lot about Hook's past in that episode, I think we saw more character change and development in David.

 

Not that the poisoning arc was handled all that well, and the consequences were too easily dealt with in the end, but I don't think it was all about Hook.

 

On another note, I would love to see a return of James in fairybacks, with perhaps another case of mistaken identity in the present. When you've got a character who literally had an evil twin, you should have fun with that. I'd love to see a scene in which Hook and David (and perhaps others -- Emma should maybe be there) are confronted by someone who's clearly got a grudge, and Hook assumes it's against him and is trying to remember what he did (since there's so much to choose from), but it turns out the guy is mad at James and thinks David is James.

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If a loyal, caring, loving husband and father is "dull", then sign me up for dull.
Hear, hear!!  I totally agree, especially considering what short shrift dad's on TV often get.  More often than not they're portrayed as clueless, bumbling, slovenly over-grown children.  Daddy Charming rocks!

Taking my thoughts to All-Seasons.

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Sign me up for David.  I could not stand him during season 1.  His cursed self was just so very ugh and so far removed from who he was in the Enchanted Forest.  I just chalked it up as him being lost and confused from waking up from his coma.  Where other people interacted on some level even though they were cursed, he didn't, then he was told he was married. 

 

But geez, Daddy!Charming is made of so much gold!!!  And I mean, his scenes with Emma are just really awesome and she is so her father's daughter on so many levels.  They are both practical and pragmatic and they have such an easy going relationship.  He unlike Snow has no expectations of her.  If she had chosen to go back to NYC, he would have been heartbroken about it, but he would have accepted it.

 

David/Hook scenes are pretty awesome too.  One of my favorite scenes of them is when David tells Hook that he is a twin "You would have liked him, he was a thief and a liar."  Honestly, do a girl a favor and bring on the bromance. 

 

When they give David things to do, he's generally pretty awesome. 

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Maybe it's because he got to see who she was as more of a casual acquaintance and was impressed with what he saw of her as Cursed!David, but didn't have relationship expectations like Snow did. So when the curse broke and he realized that the little baby he'd put in the wardrobe and the kick ass independent sheriff were the same person, he was just like "Damn, that awesome woman is my little girl!" . . .

I love their dynamic so much and it's one of the few bright spots in 3B. And it's fun to go back and watch earlier episodes with them trying to build a relationship when I like David and am not influenced by my negative feelings for Cursed!David. It's also kind of funny because I now have the opposite reaction to watching Mary Margaret interact with Emma in those same scenes.

I think part of the reason his relationship with Emma is better now, is due to how little time David spent as his curse identity, and what his relationship with Emma was like when he was his curse identity.

 

Cursed David didn't have the friendship bond with Emma that Snow had.  In some ways, that allowed Emma to be more upfront with Cursed David about how she felt/thought about certain things.  For example, there are a couple of scenes where she is clearly disapproving of this wishy-washy guy who's cheating on his wife and (presumably) leading on her friend--moreso when he could see it than when Mary Margaret could;  Emma wanted to support her friend, and sometimes that means mostly holding your tongue.

 

I've always wondered if the amount of time you spent being that other person would impact your personality;   Bandit Snow would not have doormatted for the Evil Queen.  Mary Margaret does, and so does post curse snow.  David wasn't Curse David very long, and so it seems like less of his personality stuck.  Since that makes him a completely different person than the one his daughter (and he, probably) didn't have such a great opinion of, he starts fresh.  No baggage, and no expectation of the precurse relationship entitling him to be her "Daddy".

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You know, I would totally love to see Emma and Charming bonding over how much they hated cursed!David. Heh. I wish the show had touched on how weird it was for Emma that the scumbag who broke Mary Margaret's heart turned out to actually be awesome, super duper in love with Snow, and also Emma's father. That got pretty much completely glossed over, imo--as far as I can remember, the show only so much as implied that it was a weird mental readjustment for Emma once, and that scene ended up getting deleted!--but it could have been a really nice way for Emma and David to bond initially. "God, you are SO not the David I knew." "And aren't you glad??? Because BOY, he sucked!"

 

If you're interested, I think Josh Dallas and Ginnifer Goodwin talk in the commentary to "Broken" about how they took different approaches to their characters in that episode--that Goodwin kept more of Mary Margaret in Snow, while Dallas just ditched David Nolan and went full-on Charming immediately. I think Dallas probably knew everyone loathed David Nolan, and was just as relieved as all the viewers that we could just put him away forever and ever!

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I don't think saving David had anything to do with Hook's redemption.  I think we saw more character change and development in David.

 

I just didn't see much development or change in his character in Season 3.  He did get to flesh out his character in terms of his relationship with Emma.  But getting sick with Dreamshade just gave him a chance to be noble, which was clearly part of his character trait from the beginning.  

 

Now, if they were actually to make Dreamshade about David, he would have gotten a flashback in 3A, showing how his past might have an impact on him facing death or at least an life in prison sentence in Neverland, maybe a flashback to parallel his own adoptive father dying. He could have found the magical waters himself and then be given an ultimatum by Peter Pan himself.  

 

They might have had a subplot about him being frustrated about being physically weak (this could even take place in 3B after taking a partial cure), and maybe Emma or Snow helping him to regain his confidence, as we flash back to his lack of confidence about becoming royalty and taking on a political leadership role (though this could have been a second centric for David in S3 in lieu of "The Tower" or better yet, a third centric in addition to "The Tower" which would focus on David dealing with the loss of Emma now and in the past).  

 

In Neverland, after the Echo Cave episode, we would have seen an episode built around a fight or at least a spirited discussion with Snow and Emma about what will happen after they defeat Peter Pan - will Snow stay or not?  Emma will think about how this affects her plans.  Get Henry to safety and then come back for David?  She would have been preoccupied with that.

 

That's what treating David like a main character in terms of the Dreamshade plot would have looked like to me.  

Edited by Camera One
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I agree that David has in many respects changed the least of all the core characters over the last three seasons...but that's one of the reasons I love him. Charming (not David Nolan) was just awesome in S1 and 2A, and while I think the writers forgot that in 2B, 3A and especially 3B planted him firmly back in Kickass Camp. This post pretty much sums up my feelings on him entirely.

 

Also, there's the meta-level on which Charming is one of the few characters who is still recognizable as his S1 self. (imo, Emma is really the only other one who still resembles her original self on a relatively consistent basis.) I appreciate that. They haven't totally ruined him like they ruined Snow...yet.

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I just didn't see much development or change in his character in Season 3.

 

The only minor development he had was warming up to Hook and adjusting to the idea of him being a lover for Emma.

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Yup, no wonder that "Captain Charming" and "Daddy Charming" are the only two Charming-related thing I see viewers fangirled about in S3: that's the only things that got developed. I couldn't even enjoy Charming with baby Snowflake because I'm so annoyed the stupidly-named child is gonna have everything Emma should have, while the Charmings make nice with the woman who caused Emma not to have a childhood (I know it's not the baby's fault; I resent him anyway)

I'm also annoyed that they had a boy after Charming's "it's gonna be a boy!" comments both before Emma's birth and this. I don't understand why the writers felt the need to add those?? I'm not doubting Charming loves Emma, but she already has issues, do you need to add "my daddy wanted a boy instead" to it??

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After rewatching season one, I really think that the odd blankness and detachment about David Nolan was a deliberate choice and a sign that the personality never did take on him. It was so foreign to David, and the curse was already weaker when he was given that personality, and that explains so much about the way David Nolan acted -- fake memories in his brain were telling him one thing, and he was trying to live that, but every fiber in his being was telling him something else. I'm rather impressed with the way Josh Dallas played that not quite being there, and you could see the difference in his eyes the moment the curse broke. I don't think David Nolan would have been such a weak person if it hadn't been a fake personality or if he'd had that personality from the start and had lived with it for 28 years so there was at least some true experience to it. Instead, it was more like a weak hypnotic suggestion that never really took hold.

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I agree. I also think you could see the switch got turned on in 106. Before that, he was still Charming, with amnesia. After, he became douchy David Nolan.

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After, he became douchy David Nolan.

And the funny thing was, I feel like he managed to give the impression that he felt like there was something wrong about being douchy David Nolan, like he was going through the motions because something was making him, and a lot of the bad behavior came from some part of him desperately trying to resist. Like, I don't think the David Nolan personality would have actually had the spine to stray and hook up with Mary Margaret. He'd have been more the passive-aggressive "yes, dear" kind of husband who just sulks along unhappily without ever doing anything about it because he's afraid of conflict. Having an affair would have actually required more action than he'd have been able to bring himself to take. When David was with Mary Margaret, it was like he became Charming again, just for a moment.

 

Speaking of "Charming," I expressed the opinion in the "Unpopular Opinions" thread that I really am not fond of everyone using that nickname, and the question was raised as to how many people actually used it. While Rumple and Regina use it mockingly, the Blue Fairy used it quite seriously, as though it was his given name, when she was negotiating with Gepetto about building the wardrobe and who'd get to go through it. That was where it reached eye-rolling proportions. Then George used it like it was a name when talking to Snow. At that point, it was like they were dancing around his real name, like it was going to be some spectacular revelation, since George wouldn't have called him "James," but they couldn't yet use his real name, so George used "Charming." And then it turned out to be no big deal, just that he was David in both places.

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