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What’s the Deal with Neal? Or, Why NealFire Gets No Love

Oh, Neal– you’ve suffered a truly craptastic childhood and spent most of your time on-screen racing through THREE realms to help the son you’ve known for a week … only to be met by widespread indifference at best by the OUAT fandom, as far as I can tell. I know there’s a small but vocal minority who ship Neal with Emma, but even they spent a lot of time defending Neal from various and sundry charges leveled at our favorite portal-jumper from other parts of the OUAT fandom.

It’s lit by the magical properties of Characterius No-Carius!

In which Regina is the fandom

But why is this? Is Neal really that bad a person, or is there something else going on here? Please note this essay isn’t a defense of Neal, in shipping terms or otherwise (the Neal essay is here!)– it’s merely a rundown of reasons I think he’s not more popular. Namely:

  1. Poisoning the Well
  2. Neal’s Flashback Problem
  3. Baelfire is Neal?!
  4. Guilt by Association
  5. There’s No Time!

Ready to fall down a psychological portal to a realm of rampant speculation? Then let’s go!

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