Caution: This post contains spoilers.
I’m aware that I’m repeating myself when I say that Once Upon a Time is picking up the pace. Two weeks ago brought a great showdown between Rumple (Robert Carlyle) and his father, Peter Pan (Robbie Kay). It left Rumple trapped inside Pandora’s box and a seemingly victorious Pan, who finally got Henry’s (Jared Gilmore) heart and immortality.
This week, Regina (Lana Parrilla) was the focus of the story. Lana Parrilla and Robert Carlyle play off each other well in any scene that they share, which was apparent last night. Regina gloats to Rumple about casting the curse, but Rumple foretells that she’ll be coming to him for a favor in the future to fill the hole in her heart. Sure enough, she goes to Mr. Gold’s Pawn Shop to ask him to help her get a child.
Regina goes to Boston and picks up Henry, but bonding with baby is by no means a walk in the park. In addition, she’s mortified to discover that Henry’s mother is the savior who can break the curse. She takes Henry back to the adoption agency but she is unable to abandon him; in effect, we find that she rescues him early on from the clutches of Pan.
In Neverland, Regina gets to take the lead in saving Henry, accompanying Emma (Jennifer Morrison) and Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) to the Thinking Tree. It’s another trap, as the Thinking Tree ensnares anyone with regret. Fortunately for the gang, Regina doesn’t feel any regret for the terrible things in her life, because Henry came into her life. She takes Henry’s heart and Pandora’s box back from Pan, allowing everyone to go home. It’s good to see Regina in charge and in her element once again.
Everyone, including the Lost Boys, is back on the Jolly Roger for the journey home. Neal (Michael Raymond-James) releases Rumple from Pandora’s Box, leading to a heart-to-heart moment between the two. Unfortunately, Pan comes for Henry, but not before Rumple can step in and open Pandora’s Box. The big shocker at the end of the episode is that Pan switched bodies with Henry; Henry is actually the one in Pandora’s Box, while Pan is in Henry’s body.
That’s right, folks! The hashtag #SaveHenry is still in play here. This episode was very thrilling and interesting, serving as a reminder as to why Once Upon a Time is a high quality program. It’s also a strong counterpoint to the consistent tedium of Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, which does not have the same caliber of casting as OUAT. Jafar and the Red Queen just don’t carry their scenes with the flair, tension, and playfulness exhibited by Rumple and the Evil Queen.
What sort of trouble will Peter Pan unleash in Storybrooke? Will Henry be freed and will he get his body back? Be sure to check out Once Upon a Time next Sunday to find out!
Once Upon a Time airs Sunday evenings at 8|9c on ABC.