He never fails because the writers won't let him fail until the mid-season finale
I'm not very surprised that I have a very unpopular opinion about Peter Pan, who I absolutely DESPISE! I've always hated the character of Peter Pan, even before Once Upon A Time came into the picture, although at least this one portrays him the way he deserves, as a villain. This article is actually inspired by two articles that my friend, zanhar1, wrote about why she hates Bloom from Winx Club and the unfair biasness that Winx Club has for the good guys, which will inspire a lot of points on why I hate Peter Pan. Also, considering how zanhar1's article about why she hates Bloom ended up getting deleted several times because of crazed Bloom fans reporting it, I'm not taking any chances and am going to save this to a Microsoft Word file, so I can just publish the same article again and not have to start from scratch. So please keep in mind that this is just my personal opinion and that you shouldn't get so upset about it. Please be polite, comment, and enjoy.
In my opinion, Pan is a villain version of a Gary Stu. A Gary Stu (male version of the term Mary Sue) is usually a character with little to no flaws, who doesn't really struggle, things come easily to them, and a lot of times is a self-insert for the creator of the character. I once saw a poll asking is a villain could be a Mary Sue/Gary Stu and I wasn't sure how to answer, until now. Pan is definitely a Gary Stu villain. Why? Because, how many times did he ever appear to have lost and seemed genuinely stressed or angered by it. I mean, even Rumple, who could FREAKING SEE THE FUTURE, didn't always know what would happen and would get angered when things didn't go his way. Yes, I know villains are meant to cause conflict for the heroes but it goes both ways. Regina was stressed about Emma being in Storybrooke because she would break the curse (along with being concerned about taking Henry away). It encourages the villain to strive to work harder to achieve their evil goals and just when it seemed like the heroes won, the villains cleverly wins in that moment because they tried to make sure that the good guys wouldn't win by thinking HARD! We've seen this with ALL of the other villains EXCEPT PAN! What fun is it if it looks like the hero will never win and that the villain doesn't have to struggle? I respect villains who see a struggle, get stressed about it (usually showing it in a badass way), and thinking cleverly of a way to win. With Pan, he seems to know everything and doesn't take anything too seriously, even when it looks like he's lost. You know why? Because he's a Gary Stu villain that's just so badass and evil that he pulls something out of his ass to defeat his enemy. I mean, he defeated Rumpelstiltskin of ALL PEOPLE! THE FREAKING DARK ONE WHO IS THE MOST POWERFUL BEING EVER! Pan maybe powerful but NOT THAT POWERFUL! He gets pandoras box VERY easily like it was nothing with no struggle, he escaped being trapped in pandora's box when he appeared to be defeated, he managed to be immune to the magic object that would strip him of magic, has NO weaknesses (even without love, Rumple still had a weakness, his dagger), and even when Rumple says he's finally willing to die in order to kill him he just smiles like "whatever." He's aware of what a Gary Stu villain he is and thinks he can escape death when he's told he's going to die. WHAT THE HELL? NO VILLAIN IS THAT UNBEATABLE! Not only is Pan a despicable and unlikable character, but this just makes him a terrible villain as well.
zanhar1 said in her article about how the Winx Club villains being treated poorly because of how it's made impossible for the good guys not to win and things need to be made more equal for the villains. I believe the same thing applies here, except reversed. It's like it's impossible for the good guys to beat this guy, which is both BORING and ANNOYING! Both the good guys and the bad guys need to not only have strengths, but also weaknesses and limitations. Pan doesn't have any weaknesses since he doesn't love anything or anyone except himself, what would weaken any other character doesn't work on him, how he managed to find a picture of Henry is never explained, he has minions that look up to him even though he treats them like crap, and can escape any punishment without any problem.
He doesn't get truly punished until he is killed by Rumple, which also adds to him being a Gary Stu. Why the hell would Rumple die if he Pan dies? The show never explained that? Was the show just going to have us buy that his Gary Stuness wouldn't bother us enough to actually question why this is? I'm still waiting for it to be explained and it's unlikely that the show will ever explain this! Also, when Rumple put all the Lost Boys to sleep with a spell, why wasn't Pan effected? He was given the power to be young again, that doesn't equal immunity to everything. That also brings up another point. After Regina took Henry's heart back from Pan, shouldn't Pan have died after that? That was the exact reason why Pan kidnapped Henry, who almost died because of Pan, in order to save his ass from dying when the last grain of sand fell from the hour-glass. The guy should've been dead by now! If you tell me that since he was no longer in Neverland, so he no longer had to worry about that, I'm not going to buy that. If he was still young, he was still tied to it. He (or rather Henry in Pan's body) should've been dead by now! He doesn't have any limitations like the other villains on the show do, which is just BORING in my opinion. I hate when the good guys win so easily, but I also hate it when the same is done with villains. It just makes me frustrated with poor writing, a lack of true conflict that both sides are supposed to cause for each other, and I can't be happy until the last few minutes when Pan finally DIES! Does that mean I hate the Neverland story arc, but, I LOVE it! I just think the weakest aspect of it was Pan.
People say that Zelena was a poor follow up to Pan, but I couldn't possibly disagree with that more than I do now. Zelena was actually a HUGE improvement over Pan. She was a lot more well-written because she was more human than Pan because she wanted to be loved and has a sympathetic backstory. Plus, while she did get the best of the good guys a lot of the time, she didn't always win, had limitations, and to struggle to get what she wants. She didn't just get what she wanted easily like it was no big deal like Pan did. Every upper hand she had on the good guys, whenever she won, and even having control over Rumple was something she worked hard for and actually earned. She is BY FAR a MUCH better villain than Pan and a better character in general.
I can't understand how he actually has a group of minions (The Lost Boys) who do whatever he says and the show hasn't shown us that he earned them. He treats them like crap and yet they all respect him like he's God or something! Give me a freaking break! It's shown in the episode "Save Henry" that all of the boys, except Felix and that one kid that Regina took the heart from in order to get a message to, wants to leave Neverland. Forcing them to do what he wants them to do with fear is one thing, but having them respect him to the highest is really pushing it. Once again, it's like he doesn't have to work for anything to get what he wants. I'd go so far as to say he's as frustrating, boring, and annoying with his Gary Stuness as Bloom from Winx Club is with her Mary Sueness. Yeah, I think he's THAT BAD! Felix even constantly says "Peter Pan NEVER fails!" THEY'RE PRACTICALLY SHOVING IT IN OUR FACES THAT HE'S A GARY STU FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!
I suppose I've ranted enough about him being a Gary Stu, so I'll talk about another reason why I hate Pan so much, he's too despicable. I've always thought the character of Peter Pan in general was despicable, the Once Upon A Time version just took advantage of that by making him a villain on the show. However, they made him so despicable that he has no redeeming qualities, is one-dimensional, and unlikable. He doesn't really have a backstory for how he became the asshole he is, he was basically just born evil. What I love about this show so much was that the characters weren't just black and white. No one was completely good and no one was completely evil. The good guys could do despicable things that they regretted and bad guys had sympathetic backstories that explain why they are the way they are and had weaknesses. Cruella, who many think was born evil after her backstory, actually does have some sympathy to her. She was born with a mental illness that made he a complete psychopath that enjoyed killing for fun. She didn't even know why she was this way herself and wish she knew why, even though she embraced it anyway. She was mentally ill and needed professional help that her mother wouldn't get her because she thought she could handle it herself. Plus being locked up for all her life couldn't have helped. Pan on the other hand doesn't have anything about him that makes him seem human in the very least, which I hate because it ruins the theme of the show that NOTHING is in black and white.
He is also a hypocrite! He takes joy in the fact that he abandoned his son and constantly rubs that fact in Rumple's face just for fun. Yet he shames other characters that did that like Emma and Snow White. WHAT THE HELL? You can shame someone for doing something that you did just because it benefits you. I cannot take him seriously because he uses abandoning children to guilt people like Emma and Snow White, along with using it as a reason for the Lost Boys to hate adults and join him, AND YET HE HIMSELF ABANDONED HIS OWN SON AND FEELS NO GUILT AT ALL! The little asshole even takes pleasure in rubbing it in Rumple's face that he abandoned him. WHAT A D*CK MOVE! OH I HATE HIM SO MUCH! You know how people say that Tamara was a hypocrite for hating magic but used it ONE TIME in order to escape from Emma and Neal? Yeah, PAN IS A HYPOCRITE FROM THE MOON AND BACK! He makes people feel guilty for doing something (usually out of love with Emma and Snow) that he himself did and he feels NO GUILT AT ALL! HORRIBLE CHARACTER!
The last thing I want to talk about with Pan is actually kind of somewhat positive. I will admit that he's handsome, but he is still too young looking for me to think of him as up to the level of someone like Hook, Charming, Robin Hood, Graham, August, and so forth. I also can't deny that that Robbie Kay does an absolutely phenomenal job as Peter Pan and they couldn't have found a more perfect actor to play Pan. I actually think Robbie is one of the most talented actors I've ever seen, not just on the show, but in general. Now with that out of the way, I want to bring up a point on how his fans annoy me. Now I'm not the type of person who will hate a character, show, movie, or whatever just because it has annoying fans. However, the annoying fans don't exactly help improve my opinion on it. I've mainly seen people like Pan because of his good looks and because of Robbie's acting, which I think are very weak reasons to like a character. If that were the case, why does Zelena get so much hate? Rebecca Mader is stunning and is one of the most talented actresses I've ever seen in my life. Just because you like the actor, it doesn't mean the character is a good character. Robbie Kay is incredible, but Pan is an absolutely HORRIBLE character and a lame villain! Everyone should have the common sense to know that liking someone for their looks is very shallow and a stupid reason to like a character, though unfortunately a lot of people don't get the message. Thankfully, here on Fanpop I haven't met too many people only liking Pan for his looks. However, I've still met plenty who like him for Robbie Kay's performance, who is undeniably brilliant in the role. However, when a character is a poorly done character, which Pan is in my opinion, no matter how good the actor is, I can't like the character. I've even brought up my points on why I hate Pan so much and no one seems to even pay attention to my points, which makes me feel like they're ignoring the flaws in his character, which annoys the hell out of me. However, if you like Pan, that's fine and you can go on liking him if you want to. But as for me, I will always DESPISE him, he will always be my least favorite character on the show, and one of my least favorite fictional characters of ALL TIME!