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There are some apologies that were genuine and heartfelt and I applaud those, though I have some issues with Regina’s apology to Belle (it was an apology but it was also more about getting something from Belle, not something that she exactly felt)
I agree. Regina’s apology to Belle wasn’t sincere, it was a last resort because Belle wasn’t helping Regina. First Regina demands that Belle helps her, when that doesn’t work she tries to use emotional blackmail against Belle, then when that doesn’t work she “apologises” because that was the only way to get what she wants. When Belle picks up Lumiere thinking that is the candle to which Regina was referring, Regina got very snarky towards her, not exactly the way to behave towards someone if you had just sincerely apologised to them.
But this isn’t just Regina. We’ve been focusing on her, but none of the “villains” have apologized. I have quite a few problems with people who have done heinous things not giving genuine apologies and expecting to just skate by on either no apology or an “apology” that is really anything but.
The show doesn’t really spend time on emotional moments and with 11 episodes per arc, they’re less likely to, preferring action, big bads and “look who we’re introducing now” rather than emotional reactions with characters we love.
In regards to Regina’s redemption, I think the question is What is redemption? Is it being loved by everyone with your past seemingly forgotten and never brought up again? Or is it striving to be a better person and doing the right thing even though it is hard and difficult and people may never forgive you for your past misdeeds?
I think it is the latter. When Regina is looking for a quick fix so she gets her happy ending, she’s not redeemed herself. She’s not atoned for her past mistakes, she’s not even acknowledged that her actions were bad.
I think in some ways Rumple is further down the road to redemption than either Regina or Hook. Rumple has had a backslide recently and he has done terrible things in his past but he knows and acknowledges he has done bad things. From Snow asking him how he lived with himself after all the terrible things he did and his response “You tell yourself you did the right thing, and if you say it often enough, eventually you’ll believe it” to his speech at Neal’s grave. If Rumple is trying to justify his actions in the Neal grave speech, then that suggests that he knows his actions were wrong. After all, you don’t try and justify your actions if you did something good and right.
All magic comes with a price!Keeper of Felix