Since its debut ONCE UPON A TIME has delighted in taking fans to new lands to marvel at of the places we may have only heard of. It introduced us to the Enchanted Forest, Fairytale Land, Wonderland, and now we are invited to travel to Neverland. With only two episodes remaining this season, ONCE UPON A TIME will finally pull back the curtain and reveal the story of Baelfire a.k.a Neal (Michael Raymond-James) and the magical journeys he traveled after being transported through the porthole, leaving his father Rumpletstiltskin (Robert Carlyle) far behind. In a recent press conference, creators and executive producers Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz provided candid answers about what is upcoming for the epic Season 2 finale and teased what lies ahead in Season 3 of ONCE UPON A TIME.
Just who and what “Home Office” is and why Tamara (Sonequa Martin-Green) and Greg (Ethan Embry) are working for them is one of the things yet to be revealed. Eddy and Adam assured that we will find out who “Home Office” is and what they want, but not the actual “why” of what they are doing in the season finale. In fact, in this next episode we will learn a lot more about Tamara and Greg; however, they are just the tip of the iceberg of trouble looming over Storybrooke. As Eddy revealed, “[Greg and Tamara] are wrapped up in a mission and how they succeed will be in the finale.” To which Adam added, “And more about their motivations and background will be revealed.” As for what “Home Office” really is, Adam said, “Hopefully, it’s not what you think.” For the 2nd season finale they just really wanted to explore what happens with the real world starts to connect to Storybrooke and the ramifications of that collision of realities.
Regina’s Fail-Safe Trigger
Eddy verified, “As always with a curse, there is a self-destruct button.” As to whether Tamara and Greg figure out that the black diamond is a fail-safe device, Eddy said, “Hopefully they won’t figure out what it is, but that would be boring if they didn’t.” As to what the fail-safe does, Eddy further revealed, “It’s going to destroy Storybrooke and everybody in it. . . The device is an erase-button that will return Storybrooke to what it once was, so everyone involved in it will die. Unfortunately for Regina, she’s now strapped to a table and the two people that have [the diamond] seem to be hell bent on getting rid of this town.”
Not to be forgotten, Adam and Eddy assured that we will find out what happened to Greg’s father Kurt Flynn (John Pyper-Ferguson) before the end of the next episode, and as Eddy forewarned, “No one leaves Storybrooke.” So if Greg’s father never left Storybrooke, where has he been hiding?
The Magic Beans
Where there any magic beans left after Regina (Lara Parrilla) burnt the field of beans to a crisp? Eddy said, “In true Regina fashion, she razed the fields and so there are only 3 beans left.” Which leaves three possible portals to travel through: Wonderland, Neverland and Fairytale Land, perhaps?
As we have seen so far ONCE UPON A TIME is not limited to Fairytale land and Storybrooke. In addition to venturing to New York, Victorian England, and Wonderland, the ONCE UPON A TIME universe will continue to keep expanding and visiting new lands.
Adam and Eddy confirmed that the next 2 episodes will provide a lot more insight to what happened with Baelfire (Dylan Schmid) after he fell through the porthole separating him from his father. In fact, this next episode introduces Bae to Wendy (Freya Tingley) and the Darling family, and their story will be the “emotional touchstone” to serve to inform us who Bae is as a character. But as Adam and Eddy cautioned: Neverland may not be what you think it is. Eddy called it “a kind of Neverland.” He was also hesitant to confirm whether Baelfire’s story continues into Season 3.
As previously teased at PaleyFest, ONCE UPON A TIME will be introducing to a new character this season, but we will not actually meet them until Season 3. When asked if was Peter Pan? Eddy replied, “I will neither confirm nor deny, but if you made that guess, it would probably be a good one.”
Eddy also confirmed that the flashback in the finale episode will be a continuation of Baelfire’s story. They had previously hinted that Baelfire knew somebody from before in the world of Peter Pan and that Bae has a weird connection to this person. To which Eddy coyly said, “This person will be seen and he has beautiful guy-liner.” Adam chimed-in with, “And a shiny hand.” They confirmed that the Season 2 finale is obviously very Hook-centric (Colin O’Donoghue).
Peter Pan’s Shadow
Inquiring about Peter Pan’s elusive Shadow, Eddy commented, “The Shadow is not the lovely, cuddly Shadow that we remember.” They wanted to stick with the idea that: here’s the story you know and then here’s what really happened. So Neverland will be completely different, and it will have the ONCE UPON A TIME spin on it.
As to whether Wendy could be a resident of Storybrooke, Eddy remarked, “I would be very disappointed if we didn’t see Wendy grown up and a part of the ONCE UPON A TIME world.” Adam added, “Wendy is a big part of the Peter Pan mythology, so as we fold that mythology into the ONCE UPON A TIME mythology, we’ll have contact with her more.” As cryptic as all that sounds, it does sound like a confirmation that Wendy is alive and well and could be living as an adult in Storybrooke.
Putting the immediate quash on the idea of time-travel, Adam confirmed that there is no time-travel in ONCE UPON A TIME. “It’s all linear.” Though Eddy added that since Baelfire would now be an old man if he grew up in Victorian England, “Clearly, time works differently in different lands.”
Snow’s Dark Heart
Eddy explained that as will be seen in this next episode, Snow’s “dark heart” will really start to motivate her and push her because there are a lot of feelings of guilt for what she has done. She feels compelled to find a way to heal her dark heart. Can it be healed? Eddy said, “As we saw, Regina has been trying to heal that dark heart forever and she doesn’t seem to be able to.” For example in this last episode, he explained, “Where in one moment Regina’s crying because someone reminded her of the person she wants to be and she tries really hard to do that, then she’s confronted with what she does out of anger, which is very Regina’s character, that is she lashes out in anger and it always f*cks her.” It is classic Regina, the “I want to be good,” but in her mind she’s thinking, “One more bad act. I just have to do one more really horrible act, then I can be good.” Which may explain why Regina always wants to go somewhere that no one knows her. She’s trying to run from a past and bad decisions that haunt her.
When asked if any of the budding couples will be happy by the end of the season? Eddy laughingly said, “I sure hope so!” He added, “You see Emma (Jennifer Morrison) really suppressing her feelings. It is obvious from [the last episode] that she’s carrying a torch for Neal. It is obvious to me that he still has feelings for her. . . But she’s so scarred that it’s hard for her to open up her heart. . . This is a real heavy wound.” Though next year they want to explore what happens when other people find love. Eddy elaborated, “Love is pretty much what the franchise of the show is. Everyone is always in search of it, but they pick really stupid ways to get to it.” Adam also added, “Before the end of the year, you’ll see more of the Rumple/Belle/Lacey (Emilie de Ravin) relationship. . . So love plays a big part in the rest of this season. But whether they will be happy and together, is another question. That’s the ongoing journey.” Love may be in the air, but it sounds like it remains elusive this season.
Is Belle actually gone for good? Eddy would only say, “I would be depressed if we never saw Belle again. That would be very sad. Though I really like Lacey.” As to whether we will actually see Belle again this season, Eddy teased, “I don’t know. Keep watching.” He noted that Mr. Gold (Robert Carlyle) is clearly enjoying Lacey because she lets him be who he wants to be. But that there is a tug-of-war for Mr. Gold’s heart as he also wants to be better man for Neal, his son. So there is an internal-showdown for Mr. Gold coming up. However, it was also confirmed that “true love’s kiss” will not be the cure this time to bring back Belle. It is going to take something brand new.
Eddy also confirmed that the prophecy involving Henry killing Mr. Gold “absolutely comes back to life.” Putting a wrinkle in things is that when Lacey figures out that Mr. Gold does magic that will change Lacey and Gold’s relationship even further. Eddy explained, “He’s clearly on a bender with Lacey and he’s clearly abandoned his son” – Gold is so intoxicated with newly-discovered love for Belle’s alter-ego Lacey — “so Lacey, I would hate to see if she found out about this prophecy and what she thinks about a little child stand in the way. Eddy then added, “Our characters like to repeat their own mistakes . . . As seen with our villains this year, they are all trying to go down the straight-and-narrow and none of them can seem to get off the bottle.”
Eddy said, “We’re definitely going to explore the magic inside [Emma]. There’s still a part of Emma that is still reeling from all this. I don’t think she cares for it. [This last episode] was the first time she started to question it.” He then added, “Last year was about believing. Now she believes, but it’s not what she kind of really wanted.” He further noted, “At the same time, she really embraced being a mother this year. She’s really put Henry (Jared Gilmore) first and she’s really coming to grips with it and when Henry said he would like to go back to [the Fairytale Land] is really had an effect on her.” Also what they find interesting about Emma was at first she was just a pawn as the savior and once that was done, she didn’t have a role to play and she had to come to grips with that. Then Neal returned and all these emotions came flooding back. That will set up in the finale and Emma will discovery she has a new purpose — and she’ll have to commit one way or the other.
Magic vs. Science
Adam said that ONCE UPON A TIME is about magic and how we perceive magic in our world, and what happens when science and magic collide. That will continue to be a big part of the ONCE UPON A TIME world.
Rest assured for those wondering about the hanging storyline involving Aurora (Sarah Bolger), Mulan (Jamie Chung) and Philip (Julian Morris) – all will all be seen again before the end of this season.
Then if you want to see more of ONCE UPON A TIME’s Huntsman, be sure to check out the graphic novel, which features the adventures of the Huntsman and Red Riding Hood, who make a natural team since she’s a wolf and he was raised by them. However, all their adventures are flashbacks since in the TV series The Huntsman (Jamie Dornan) died and Ruby (Meghan Ory) is stuck in Storybrooke.
So to see the backstories of Baelfire, Wendy, Peter Pan and Hook, as well as the fates of Belle/Lacey and Rumplestiltskin, be sure to tune in on Sunday, May 5th at 8:00 p.m. for part 1 of the finale entitled, “Second Star to the Right,” and the 2nd season finale on Sunday, May 12th at 8:00 p.m. for part 2 of the finale, “And Straight On ‘til Morning,” on ABC.
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