And they lived happily ever after.
As one story came to an end on Once Upon a Time, another one began.
But first, let’s address the Black Fairy’s curse and the Final Battle that almost erased all the realms of stories, and everyone in them, from existence.
As the Black Fairy’s curse was cast upon Storybrooke, we were taken back to season 1, it seemed. Except this curse was much more dangerous than the Evil Queen’s curse, almost feeling like it was done “properly” this time around… like a new and improved curse.
While Henry’s memory remained untouched, the others weren’t so lucky, especially Emma Swan, who was committed to a mental institution for her fairytale delusions. When Henry comes to visit her, she’s adamant that he not hinder her progress by once again spewing stuff about magic, her parents being Snow White and the fairytale book. Henry knows that this is all part of the curse with the Black Fairy wanting Emma to forget her family once and for all so she could be the lonely orphan with no hope who would go on to lose the battle.
The Black Fairy stuck by close enough to ensure her plan by becoming Henry’s “mother” in this new world. Oh and the Mayor, another play from Regina’s OG curse. Since she’s a fairy that basically created dark magic, I wonder why her curse didn’t affect Henry. Did she intend to keep him awake to keep up the challenge for herself? Because as we know from experience, Henry is really good at making his mother believe again.
Well, he was better the first time. Despite breaking Emma, OG red leather jacket and all, out of the hospital and showing her the rooftop where she just married Hook, he was unable to trigger her memories. He decided to steal the storybook from his “mother” so that Emma could read through and remember something but the Black Fairy realized he was awake and pushed him down the stairs.
When Emma got wind of his accident, she realized that Henry wouldn’t stop believing this nonsense unless she herself gave up on it and burned the storybook. She ignored all of his pleas and tossed the book into the fire, watching Hook’s picture burn. And still nothing. True love prevails? I think not. Then, she packed up all of her belongings and went back to her empty apartment that she called ‘home’ in Boston.
Henry realized that the Black Fairy was on her way to defeating them but promised him and his family would take her down. That’s when she told him the unfortunate side effect of Emma losing all hope; his family, who were sent back to the Enchanted Forest with their memories intact, would seize to exist.
Back in the Enchanted Forest, Hook, Snow, Regina, Charming and Zelena figured out that the Final Battle was for her soul, her belief, and her hope. Their mission was to find their way back to Storybrooke to help her remember but it wasn’t going to be easy. Jumping from a magical realm to a land with no magic required powerful magic, which they did not have. Hook and Charming teamed up to climb a beanstalk, just like Hook and Emma did way back when. When they successfully reached the top and stole the bean, they awoke the dragon, which caused the whole beanstalk to collapse on their way down.
Hook was uninjured but Charming was nowhere to be found. Snow, who felt that something was wrong with her man, went to go find him while the pirate went to go find Emma. But with every moment that Emma stopped believing (cue Journey’s ‘Don’t Stop Believin’) the magic became less powerful. By the time he reached the castle, the bean’s magic had fizzled out. Even Regina and the Evil Queen combined couldn’t conjure up the necessary power. As the smoke of doom closed in on them, the Evil Queen made the ultimate sacrifice to buy them some time, redeeming herself in the process. Even villains can turn good, an important lesson that was carried through this episode.
Even with Emma gone, Henry knew he couldn’t give up on Operation Cuckoo’s Nest and decided to become the substitute saviour, taking on his mom’s responsibilities of killing the Black Fairy all by himself. Someone has to do the hard work after Emma just skipped town. As he was about to march into the “Mayor’s” office, Emma appeared out of nowhere to assist. She didn’t believe just yet but she read his makeshift storybook and realized that whoever this woman he was talking about, it was the kind of woman she wanted to be. “I believe,” she told him as they walked blindly into the Final Battle.
I say blindly because they didn’t know that they were actually going to take on Gideon, not the Black Fairy. Remember those visions Henry had and those weird symbols he drew? Well, it was an ancient language, one she recognized. So she waltzed into Gold’s shop while he was out looking for Belle (obviously he didn’t believe those photoshopped pics), who was made into a frightened peasant in this new world, to steal back her powerful fairy wand. Once she deciphered the code, she realized that darkness didn’t stand a chance against Emma, she needed to use light.
When Gold returned from his mission to find Belle, he was angry at his mother. Thankfully he revealed that he never trusted her before the curse but now, he was sure she only thought about herself. She wasn’t aware her son was also awake but when she realized he was, she tried to explain that once Gideon defeated Emma, she would have powers beyond anyone’s belief; powers that didn’t abide by the rules. She promised that he would be able to be the Dark One and also have the family he’d always wanted, she even promised to bring back his loved ones from the dead.
Gold pretended to fall for it and once she was in his embrace, told her the one thing we all know is too true in the world of fairytales – magic always comes with a price, dearie. Then, he used her own wand to kill her and it was almost like she was Voldemort, crumbling into grey dust of nothingness. See ya later bitch.
When she died, her “curse” was undone, returning everyone’s memories and bringing Emma’s family back home. You would think that the orders she gave Gideon would also be undone but I guess it was just in the cards for her to fight the final battle, no matter what.
It was time and everyone met in the town square, just like in Emma’s visions. That’s when they realized that there really wasn’t an out – if he killed her, he killed the light and if she killed him, she brought a darkness out of herself, also snuffing out a light. So how does lightness prevail when no matter the outcome, darkness always wins? Hope, Regina told Emma. When the moment comes, she’ll know what to do.
As Gideon approached, Emma truly believed in that. In goodness. In hope. In family. In being the savior. In being the light. And then it occurred to her – she had to sacrifice herself for the good of the world. She dropped her sword and as Gideon drove his through her, a bright light emitted. As Emma fell to the ground, he disappeared.
Was Emma gone for good? Henry remembered something we all need to if we’re ever trapped in a fairytale and want to wake someone – true loves kiss. As he knelt to give his mom a peck, she flickered her eyes open and then, it was all over. The final battled had been one. When they opened the storybrooke, the phrase “when both good and evil did the right thing, faith was restored.”
So what now? Well, everyone went on to live their happy beginning. Emma and Hook enjoyed being married finally and she even made him town Sheriff. Seriously, driving around with a siren in a beetle… could they be any cuter? Henry went to school happy to have both mom’s alive and getting along. Snow and Charming moved out to the perfect little home with their son and she went back to teaching.
Best of all? Gideon returned to his baby form and Rumpel and Belle finally got their perfect little family back. During the Final Battle, Rumpel tried to do the right thing and save both his son and Emma by finding Gideon’s heart and telling him not to go through with the kill order. He failed but the fact that he defeated the darkness in himself and stood up to “Rumpelstilskin” one last time assured Belle that he was finally the man she always knew he could be.
Then, they all sat down to a family supper at Granny’s and well, lived happily ever after. It would have been the perfect series finale… and in a way, it technically was.
The episode’s cold open showcased a bit of what we can expect in the season 7 reboot. We saw a man, presumably an older Henry, with a girl named Lucy in the Enchanted Forest, telling her to keep the storybook safe as he prepares for battle. In a later scene, Lucy meets Tiger Lily with the book and finds her father’s sword – noticeably the same one Henry used to help Emma in the final battle. She’s worried her father died and she didn’t stay around to help him fight but Tiger Lily assures her that visions reveal they will meet again. But first, she has to get the book back to her mother, possibly Violet?
We then see Lucy on a modern day train in Seattle, reading the Once Upon a Time book with the painting of Emma and her friends eating their “last supper.” She arrives at an apartment, knocks on the door and the same gentleman we saw in the flashforwards opens it. “Are you Henry Mills,” she asks the clearly confused man before hitting him with the “I’m your daughter” line. Feels familiar? It should because this was some serious season 1 Deja Vu. I guess the apple doesn’t fall from the tree right?
There are a few questions that arise here: Why is Henry in Seattle and not Storybrooke? Does Storybrooke not exist anymore? How does he not know he has a daughter? Does he still believe in magic? Is he under another curse? What happened to Snow, Charming, Emma, Regina, etc? Who is his “family that needs help?” We know Emma will not be returning next season and seeing as this is an older Henry, things are definitely going to get a fresh coat of paint.
Thoughts? Were you satisfied with the finale? Would you change anything? Do you think it should have ended without a season 7 continuation?
Once Upon a Time – Chosen (7×17)
Our time in Hyperion Heights is nearing an end and Henry is *this close* to breaking the curse on Once Upon a Time.
Honestly, I thought with Hansel’s talk of fairytales, something would jolt Henry’s memory since he’s the truest believer and all of his memories would come flooding back in.
Thankfully, Henry is still as much in the dark as he has been this whole season. It seems like only true love’s kiss could wake him up from his slumber. And as long as Lucy is around, that isn’t happening anytime soon.
So, what were the best moments from the episode that saw Zelena coming face-to-face with the Candy Killer? Let’s look at them!
- The Wicked Witch TRIED to be a good person back in Oz when she was rescued by Hansel and Gretel’s blind father. When he showed her hospitality, she went back to the gingerbread cottage to save the children only to find that they were gone. She assumed they were dead but when she arrived at the cottage with vision for the father after blinding the witch, her biggest adversary, she realized the kiddos were back home and they told their father everything. He rejected the “eyes” so she threw them in the fire furiously into the fire and made Hansel pay by burning his arms.
- Hansel has been attacking witches in the coven because obviously, they are the reason his sister is dead, but he still blames Zelena for Gretel’s death because she wanted to be exactly like her. Oh, get over it Hansel!
- Zelena really loves Chad and when Hansel threatened to hurt him, she really put up a good fight.
- She then told Chad everything about Zelena, minus the magical parts, and he accepted her for who she is because her decision not to kill Nick proved to him that she was really a changed woman. Ah, true love can overlook murderous claims; the Wicked Witch gets her happy ending after all.
- Zelena and Chad are going back home to San Francisco which means this is likely the last we’ve seen of them. Unless there’s a wedding that we’re all invited too!
- Margot is staying behind, however, because of a cute blonde girl by the name of Tilly.
- Facilier is the one who woke up Hansel because he needed him to kill Mother Gothel, the other person vying for the Dark One’s dagger.
- Prince Naveen has earned Sabine’s trust and is given the special recipe for her beignets, which Facilier uses for his voodoo doll.
- That voodoo doll then kills Hansel after a tussle between him and Facilier ensues. Oh, and Facilier is the one who woke him up so that he would kill Mother Gothel who is also after the Dark One’s dagger.
Thoughts on this episode? Was the showdown between Zelena and Hansel everything you hoped it would be? Or a letdown?
Will Regina find a way to save Henry and break the curse?
Once Upon a Time – Breadcrumbs (7×16)
Well, Henry finally figured out who the killer was. Unfortunately, the killer made him his prisoner. So now, in addition to worrying about the curse, Henry also has to survive being held captive.
On the bright side, we finally saw the moment that Henry proposed to inexpressive Jacinda in the Enchanted Forest. Like most Jacinda-skeptics, I didn’t find anything romantic about the moment.
In both the magical realm and in Hyperion Heights, Henry was looking for his great adventure. Only one of those ended with him getting the girl.
In the Enchanted Forest, Henry turned to Hook in hopes of having his own story worthy of impressing Cinderella. It’s hard living up to your grandparents when they are Snow White and Prince Charming and have a love story for the ages!
Hook suggests they sneak onto the Jolly Roger, which has been taken over by Blackbeard, and find Davy Jones Locker. However, his plan falls through when Henry realizes the whole thing has been staged. The idea that Nook (new Hook) was so desperate to help Henry the way Hook always had, he went to such great lengths was admirable, but the storm that his plan summoned was not.
After trying to outrun to the eye of the storm, they realized they were being chased and Henry knew this was a magical side-effect to stealing the treasure. Once he climbed the ship’s mast and threw the ring back into the whirlpool, the storm diminished and everything went back to normal.
And although he now had a pretty heroic tale to his name, Henry realized that he simply wanted to have a great life with the woman he loves. Plain and simple, just like the ring, just like the proposal. Or you can call it bland because that’s Cinderella’s who appeal.
Back in the real world, Henry received a call from some New York media company who wanted to offer him a job producing podcasts. H-Town may be a hit amongst the locals but really, is it that good? This definitely smelled like a set-up by Nick who seemingly wanted Henry out of town so he could target the remaining witches Kelly (Zelena) and Roni (Regina).
Henry told Jacinda the good news, half-hoping she would beg him to stay. I personally thought they would kiss goodbye and break the curse that way but thankfully, despite their affection, they didn’t give into temptation.
Weaver interjected Henry’s plans of heading to the airport after he found his storybook at the scene of the crime. Turns out, the Candy Killer was obsessed with Henry’s writing which made Henry the only person who could read through his notes and figure out his identity.
I definitely feel for Henry because he’s walking so close to the edge of truth but is still beyond confused when it comes to his identity. He’s constantly in a foggy state of mind especially when it comes to his own writing, which is his only claim to fame.
Some encouraging words from Weaver and soon enough, Henry figured out the breadcrumbs left behind in his book — the killer thought he was Hansel and was trying to avenge his sister’s death.
Obviously, that didn’t mean anything to Henry because he didn’t believe in fairytales but for Weaver, it’s a huge clue. He’s awake so he can likely narrow down his suspects.
Given that he’s Henry’s grandfather, Weaver tried to steer him in the right direction and away from New York. After all, his whole family is right here in HH.
On his way to the airport, Henry got a flat tire and when he saw that it was caused by a “glass slipper,” he knew it was fate and that he had to go back for Jacinda. Conveniently, Henry’s car stopped right in front of the troll, which we know from last week’s episode, is equipped with security cameras. And conveniently, Nick arrived to “offer” Henry a ride.
Henry accepted thinking nothing of it but that soon changed when Nick began asking questions regarding the Candy Killer case. The more Henry told him, the tension escalated until Henry saw the scars on Nick’s arm. The Candy Killer made it very clear in the book that he has an obsession with scars.
Before Henry could even devise an escape plan, Nick injected him with some the muggle-world alternative of a sleeping curse. When he woke up, he was tied up in Hansel’s apartment and unapologetically plotting to kill again.
I think Henry will be woken from the curse not by true love’s kiss but by the realization that his stories are actually real and Hansel really is who he says he is.
His next victim? Zelena. While making up with her daughter Margot (aka Robin in the Enchanted Forest) she revealed that she misses her real-world fiancee Chad. Margot assumed the box of chocolates addresses to her mom were from him but we all know better. Honestly, if your daughter is also a half-witch and comes to town, wouldn’t you let her know that there’s a killer hunting victims with boxes of chocolates?
Let’s hope someone checks the footage from the troll cam because it’s very likely that no one will notice Henry’s disappeared because they’ll believe he went to New York.
Do you think Regina was missing because she used the magic Facilier gave her to track down whatever ingredients she needed to complete the potion to free Henry from the curse?
Aside from all this witchcraft-murder-mumbo-jumbo, Tilly and Rogers’ story succeeded in being the most endearing. They have a connection, but much like Henry and his fairytales, they don’t understand why. Rogers can’t figure out why he’s so drawn to Tilly and why he wants to help get back on the right track. Oh, just wait until it all starts to make sense, you guys!
Tilly proved that she can find her way by having a successful first day of work at Sabine’s beignet food truck. Who knew Tilly was a sales rockstar?
I love that these delicious beignets are what’s going to bring Sabine and Rogers together and also, Tilly and Margot. Do you think Tiana and Nook were together in the other realm? They are so drawn to each other here, there was to be some history.
Thoughts on this week’s Once Upon a Time? We’re nearing the end but we’re no closer to resolving this curse mystery. And honestly, Hansel taking Henry as his prisoner made this whole witchhunt arc worthwhile because otherwise, no one really cared about Hansel’s vendetta. Since Hansel and Henry were buds in the other realm, was he always evil?
Once Upon a Time – Sisterhood (7×15)
Once Upon a Time finally wrapped up the daunting Ivy/Drizella and Anastasia storyline this week.
Honestly, Adelaide Kane had so much potential as the villain-turned-hero but she was sorely underused and got an awful redemption arc. After her mother’s death, she tried to continue her mission but found herself failing at every turn. Given how close her relationship with Ana was and how much she “needed her” when they were kids, it was upsetting to see her sell her out to Facilier for a way back to the other realm. “If it comes down to your or me, I choose me,” she told her sis before deceiving her yet again.
However, Facilier underestimated Ana’s powers because Gothel was able to wake her up, right as he was completing his spell. Gothel was hoping Ana would turn on her sister because the broken bond would let her siphon more easily. However, Ana proved to be a better sister by refusing to kill Drizella. The two make up, which sends Gothel running for the woods. What’s she going to do now?
Regina is still pissed at Drizella for casting the curse and not providing a loophole to save Henry but this isn’t her first go-around with an “unbreakable” curse. She and Weaver send the sisters off to a “happier place,” which makes them people than I would ever be. How did Drizzy just get away with everything? Regina tells herself it’s because she was coerced into casting the curse but still, it definitely isn’t fair that everyone is stuck paying the price while she gets her happy ending.
Regina is also shocked that Weaver just let the Guardian go back home, which means he won’t be able to find his way to Belle. Rumpel says something along the lines of “he feels closer to Belle whenever he does good deeds” but knowing him, he has another plan up his sleeve.
Facilier proves his loyalty to Regina by handing her the magic that he stole from Ana so that she can find a way to save Henry. He claims it’s the reason why he lied to Drizella in the first place, but I just can’t believe he would ever be so selfless.
Meanwhile, little Lucy is still trying to keep Jacinda and Henry apart, however, what’s meant to be will always find its way in the end. She plans a bro-date for Henry with his Enchanted Forest besties Hook and Nick and in an effort to help him move on from Jacinda, he agrees to ask out the next girl that walks into the bar. Magically, the next woman is actually Jacinda and the two flirt up a storm. Not believing in this fate mumbo-jumbo, Jacinda challenges him to sink a coin in a nearby glass but the bartender pulls the glass before it even has a chance to make it.
I want Henry to find his happiness but seriously, Jacinda is such a dud. She has no personality, no dimension, nothing.
That’s seemingly a good thing because if it had made it, Henry and Jacinda would have likely kissed thus breaking the curse and killing Henry. However, Jacinda tempted fate again at home and sunk the shot, convincing herself that maybe Lucy has been right this whole time. If Lucy and Regina don’t come up with something quick, things are going to get really messy.
As for Nick, he left the bar to find that his car got a flat tire. The boys offered to change it for him but he refused and when he opened his trunk, we understood why. Inside was the creepy baby mask, from the horror-movie-inspired scene that made me question what I was watching for a hot minute, and packages of marzipan chocolates used by the witch killer.
Considering the “flashback” involved Drizella and Gretel fighting to join Gothel’s coven, it stands to reason that Nick is actually Hansel from “Hansel and Gretel” and is seeking revenge on the witches for killing his sister. It also explains why Ivy became one of his targets as she’s the one actually responsible for Gretel’s death and why he uses something as unsuspecting as candy.
However, this means Nick is awake, he wasn’t a real friend to Henry back then, and someone else knows his secret because I doubt he slashed his own tire. Is it Weaver? Facilier?
That said, the serial killer storyline feels so random on this show. I don’t even really care what happens to Gothel or her witches since we’re trying to break the curse and save Henry’s life. Also, without Ivy, who are any of Gothel’s witches? What does it even matter to us? Aside from her beef with Hook and Tilly.
I was really into the revamp at first but about halfway through the season, it became clear that Once had really run its course.
Thankfully, we’re inching closer to the series finale which means we’re closer to reuniting with all our good friends in Storybrooke. How do you think the series will end?
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