Split between two storylines, the Enchanted Forest immediately following the second curse and New York City one year later, Once Upon a Time returns with Hook‘s (Colin O’Donoghue) repeated attempts to get Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison) to remember her past. Given her happy and uncomplicated life with Henry (Jared Gilmore) and a would-be fiance (Christopher Gorham), and the crazy story which Hook presents her with, it takes more than a little convincing.
In the other storyline Prince Phillip (Julian Morris) and Princess Aurora (Sarah Bolger) welcome Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin), Prince Charming (Josh Dallas), and the others back home but do not warn them of the new evil which has taken over Regina‘s (Lana Parrilla) old castle, and whose flying monkey minions spread terror through the forest. The main group also meet Robin Hood (Sean Maguire) and his Merry Men, with the noticeable absence of Mulan (Jamie Chung), as other small groups from Storybrooke starting popping up all over the woods unaware of the dangers which await them. Despite teasing the renewal of tension between Snow and Regina, events keep the pair on the same side as the bond over loosing their children and reclaiming their kingdom (at least for now).
From the set-up of this episode it appears events of the past year in the Enchanted Forest will slowly be revealed as how the Wicked Witch of the West (Rebecca Mader) rose to power in Regina’s absence and banished the entire group back to Maine. Eventually Hook convinces Emma to drink a potion and return with him to Storybrooke, bringing Henry who still has no memory of this true life. The town it seems has returned with a reinstated curse, although this time the townspeople remember their true selves. As to what the savior will be called on to do to break the latest curse, whether the witch is active in this world as well, and how quickly Henry may adapt to his new surroundings, we’ll just have to wait and see.