I love a good love story.
You should know that about me by now.
Recently I’ve gotten highly involved in the show Once Upon A Time. Love it. Such a fun concept.
Once Upon a Time–Prince Charming married his princess and everyone lived happily ever after. Or not.
If you plan to watch but haven’t yet, skip to the end of this post. Fair warning, faithful readers. OUAT spoilers ahead.
If you haven’t seen it, here’s the premise: fairy tale characters (Snow White, Prince Charming, Rumpelstiltskin, Red Riding Hood, The Huntsman, et al) were cursed by the evil queen and were banished to live in the “real world”, ie, Storybrooke, Maine, where they live boring days with no recollection of their former lives as storybook characters. Until. Until Emma Swan shows up, setting the clock in motion, ending the dictatorial reign of the mayor (the Evil Queen). Emma is important, but I won’t go into detail about her now. This post ain’t about her.
So, now everyone in Storybrooke is acting all crazy, working toward figuring out the truth, and the one thing I want the most–the one thing that drives all of it, in my opinion, is the relationship between Snow White and Prince Charming. In the real world, they are known as Mary Margaret and David. And I want them to figure out they are in love.
Except I don’t.
Cause see, there’s one little problem. In the real world, David (our adorable, sweet Prince Charming) is married. To someone else.
Okay, maybe his marriage is questionable. Like, it might have been “faked” by the mayor to keep David under her control (yeah, yeah, it’s a stretch, but the woman is evil). Regardless, David’s wife, Kathryn, says they’re married, and he believes her. By the way, David was in a coma for a really long time (like, since the moment the fairy tale became reality) and only woke up when Mary Margaret (Snow White, his true love, his wife and mother of his child in the fairy tale world) touched him.
Are you still with me?
Yes, David of Reality is married to Kathryn. Yes, Prince Charming (James) of FairyTaleLand is married to Snow White. And they are the same dude.
Confused? I’m getting to a point, I promise. And it has nothing to do with bigamy.
My point is this: in the real world part of the show, David and Mary Margaret find themselves drawn together, all sorts of inappropriate feelings flying around them, even though he’s married to another woman.
Mary Margaret tries to push him away. She tells him it’s wrong.
He tells Mary Margaret that she’s the only thing that feels right since he’s woken up from his coma.
Then he goes home, to his wife, and says he wants to work it out.
In the most recent episode I watched (I DVR them and tend to watch a week or so after they air. Just don’t have time to keep up!), David thought his wife was pregnant. So he told her he would go to counseling. They would work on their issues because they are “supposed” to be in love.
He tells Mary Margaret that she’s the one. But his character is certainly taking advantage of that marriage bed.
When he found out his wife wasn’t pregnant, he ended up in a lip-lock with Mary Margaret.
Part of me cheered. Part of me just got mad.
I want the hero and heroine to end up together. I really, really do. But now I’m wondering if David is really the hero.
See, I have this little moral compass inside me that says no matter how much of a shrew his wife is (and she’s really not that bad, just suspicious) or how much he feels “drawn” to Mary Margaret, he’s married. Married.
It’s not just a piece of paper, folks. It’s a commitment.
The fact that our “hero” tells his wife one thing and allows his feelings to drive him straight into the arms of another woman, well, to be honest, it knocks him off the Prince Charming white horse.
I want to want the hero and heroine to be together, but I can’t. I really, really can’t. Marriage means something to me. It’s sacred. And I’m tired of it being treated like a temporary condition rather than a lifelong vow.
Now, let’s say that in a few episodes we find out that he’s not actually married to Kathryn. Does that make it better? Does it make his behavior okay? He thinks he’s married. For all we know right now, he is.
What if he left his wife? If he left her, would his behavior be acceptable?
|David with his wife, Kathryn.|
Part of my problem with his character is the back-and-forth wishy-washy “I love you but I’m supposed to be with her” attitude.
I want to say that it’ll be okay. He’s only a little married. But something inside me (darn that moral compass) says nope.
How “married” does he have to be for his behavior to be acceptable?
I felt the same way when I saw the movie Something Borrowed.
I hated every second of that movie. I just couldn’t be cool with the whole “I’m stealing my best friend’s fiance” even though the best friend was not a good person. (Is it a coincidence that Gennifer Goodwin was the star of that movie and she’s the star of Once Upon A Time? Weird. I do think she’s so adorable…) Granted, they weren’t married in the movie, but close enough, I guess.
Should it matter that the woman being cheated on is a less than stellar human being? Is that supposed to make it okay?
It certainly seems to make it easier for society to accept.
But what if that woman was you?
Share with me: How do you feel about romances like this–that start with one of the characters in a marriage? Can you get past the marriage “thing” if the spouse is horrible enough?