How The OUAT Writers Screwed Over Will Scarlet

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Once Upon A Time in Wonderland has landed on Disney+.

Now that everybody has had the chance to binge it, let's discuss a truth universally acknowledged by all those who have seen both spinoff and original series:

Will Scarlet was screwed over!

Will was the best part of Once Upon A Time in Wonderland. No disrespect to Alice, Anastasia, Jafar, or even Cyrus.

We love Alice. She's a badass!

Anastasia had a beautiful arc, and she's a beautiful person inside and out.

Jafar was scary as F*#*@!

And while Cyrus was no Prince Charming, he had a charm all his own.

But let's not kid ourselves. Wonderland would not have been half as enjoyable without a certain thief.

The Knave of Hearts, AKA Will Scarlet, started as comic relief. He helped Alice, and we thought he might be in a love triangle with Alice and Cyrus. 

Instead, we got the only boy/girl bromance in the Onceverse, a tragedy in and of itself. Will loved Alice like a sister.

He jumped into the water to save her life, even though he couldn't swim, because he didn't know how to lose her. Those two were #friendshipgoals!

He also had an epic love. Initially, it seemed we were meant to invest in Alice and Cyrus as the show's great love story. Don't get me wrong; they held their own.

However, from the moment we found out Will's old love, Ana was also The Red Queen, we were caught up in that tale of heartbreak. 

Will was just a thief who risked it all for love and got burned. He was literally a man without a heart!

Yet he was so full of love that he put himself on the line for Alice, Lizard, and the good people of Wonderland, even without his heart beating in his chest.

Will became a true hero of the show, and when the dust settled, he had a true love and a true friend to show for it. Wonderland ended on a happy note.

However, it also ended. Fans wanted more from Will Scarlet, and the writers seemed to think they could deliver. They promised to bring him over to the main series, and boy, were we excited!

It did bring up some questions, though. The last time we saw him, Will was happy with Ana. There were no reports of Emma Rigby joining the main cast, which left us wondering. Did they recast her or something worse?

Sure enough, when Will showed up in Storybrooke on Once Upon A Time Season 4 Episode 3, he was alone.

He was stealing again. However, he no longer seemed very good at it. He kept getting caught or beat up, and he couldn't seem to pick a lock or win a fight. What happened to the Jack of all trades?

On Once Upon A Time Season 4 Episode 4, Will tried to steal a copy of Alice in Wonderland from the Storybrooke library, and he ripped out the page with The Red Queen.

When Emma asked him about it, he looked heartbroken, but he wouldn't tell her anything.

It seemed like he had regressed to the man he was before the White Rabbit came to get him on Once Upon A Time in Wonderland Season 1 Episode 1. 

Fans were told that Once Upon A Time Season 4 was after Wonderland. For proof, on Once Upon A Time Season 4 Episode 11, Will was affected by the curse of shattered sight, but Killian wasn't. Killian, at the time, didn't have a heart. Will clearly did.

We were also reassured that Will's backsliding and Ana's absence would be explained in the latter half of the season in time. That never happened. Instead, we got ScarletBeauty.

Now, I love RedScarlet almost as much as I love Rumbelle. So seeing either Belle or Will single and dating other people was not exactly something I relished.

However, I love Belle, and I love Will. They are great characters, and they actually have a lot in common. Both had an epic love, then got their hearts broken when their loved one chose evil. 

I was open to seeing how Belle and Will's romance would play out. Would they be a great 'ship that got us over all the angst and tragedy of Rumbelle?

No. No, they would not. I haven't clocked it, but I'd be willing to wager that if you added up all the moments that Will and Belle had on screen together, it wouldn't be more than five minutes.

We didn't even see them together until Once Upon A Time Season 4 Episode 14 when Rumple saw them kissing. Now, the writers clearly wanted us to feel Rumple's shock at that moment. Fine, writers; we were shocked. What about after?

We saw them on one date on Once Upon A Time Season 4 Episode 15, Belle said one or two sentences to Will, and then they got interrupted by Rumple posing as Killian, and then it was over. 

He helped Rumple steal Belle's heart back on Once Upon A Time Season 4 Episode 20, but he interacted more with Rumple than Belle there. When she got her heart back in her chest, Belle only had eyes for Rumple.

That would be the perfect time for the two to talk about their issues. Will could have explained what he went through not having his heart and how he forgave Ana for being a villain and hurting him like she did.

Instead, we got an off-hand comment from Belle on Once Upon A Time Season 4 Episode 23 that she didn't love Will. We didn't see them together, and we didn't see them break up. We just assumed they did.

When Will was first brought in for Once Upon A Time Season 4, he was a series regular. However, after doing little to nothing on the show, he was demoted on Once Upon A Time Season 5, and after doing one or two scenes, he left the show. 

Nobody can blame the actor for leaving. He wasn't doing anything on the show. He was a rebound for Belle, a convenient, listening ear for Robin, and the guy who could give Hook a magic mushroom when it's convenient.

However, since they destroyed the happy ending he had on Wonderland to bring him into the main series and then didn't even use him, you'd think they'd explain what became of him. They owed him -- and the audience -- a few answers.

On Once Upon A Time In Wonderland Season 1 Episode 13, Alice read a book to her daughter saying Will and Ana became White King and Queen, and they lived happily ever after.

We hope this is true and that the events on Once Upon A Time were just a weird blip in Will's life. It would be tragic if RedScarlet were broken up for nothing. Well, they were, but it would have been tragic if they didn't reconcile.

We'll never know, really. We never saw Will and Ana again, and we have no clue what happened to them.

At one point, Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz promised to do a stand-alone episode where we checked in with Will and Ana, but it never happened. We were more disappointed than surprised because those guys broke promises all the time.

Some horrible things were done over the course of seven seasons, but the treatment of Will Scarlet might have been the worst. He deserved so much better! 

Do you agree with us about Will deserving better? Did you want more of him with Belle, or were you RedScarlet all the way? Do you have a theory as to why Will was alone in Storybrooke?

Let us know in the comments.

Leora W was a staff writer for TV Fanatic..

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