After Sunday’s surprising episode, ‘Once’ creators and executive producers, Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis reveal a little bit about what we can expect to see in Storybrooke now that Hook and Cora have arrived. In interviews with TVLine and TVGuide, the duo talks about magic, mayhem and more.
For starters, Jiminy Cricket lives! Unfortunately, he is now a pawn in Cora’s cruel game. It does not really matter who died in his stead, the point is that Cora doesn’t care who she kills and she will stop at nothing until she gets what she wants. In this case, what Cora needs is information and Dr. Hopper is the only one who knows how everyone ticks, including Rumple and Regina. So, will Cora be able to break the strong-willed cricket and force him to spill all of the Storybrookers’ secrets? Kitsis remains evasive, saying:
For Jiminy, he is going to be facing the old patient-doctor confidentiality issue. A lot of these people are his patients, and Cora and Hook are going to be very interested in the secrets of Mr. Gold and Regina, and it's really how long can Archie hold up?
Given Cora’s malice, poor Dr. Hopper may not last very long. Hopefully the others will learn he’s alive and save him before it is too late. After all, Cora and Hook won’t hide in his invisible ship for too long.
Kitsis: Obviously we're not going to keep them secret for the entire season. I would say in short order we find out their plans. But we don't want to spoil when each of them are revealed.
Horowitz: The mayhem they're causing continues at an exponential rate.
Kitsis: A frenetic pace.
As a matter of fact, the promo for Sunday’s new episode shows that Hook reveals himself to Rumple. So what should we expect from Hook? Will he use Belle against Rumpy? Or will he cast strategy aside and go in straight for the kill?
Horowitz: We hope that the Rumple-Hook-Belle of it all happens in a surprising way. There's clearly a confrontation brewing and it's coming soon. I think you should be worried about everyone. You've got Cora and Hook in town!
The trailer for this Sunday’s “The Outsider” also teases that Rumple has found a way to use magic and retain his memory after he crosses the Storybrooke line. Does this mean that magic can be used outside of Storybrooke? Can Cora and Hook leave Storybrooke without being affected?
Kitsis: Obviously they can leave because they weren't under the curse. As far as using magic outside the line, we're definitely going to explore that. I would strongly suspect that magic ends at the town line.
Maybe Hook realizes there is someone more valuable than Belle in Rumpy’s life. If he realizes he can leave town, Hook could go after Bae and threaten to rob Rumpy of his beloved, long-lost son. What do you think, Oncers? Would Hook be that cruel? Could Rumple stop Hook by himself or is he hoping to have a little magical back-up?
The Rump has been urging Emma to use and develop her powers. Having been in Emma’s shoes, Regina even cautioned the magic newbie to be careful because magic always comes with a price. Is he trying to nudge Emma into magic for selfish reasons, like he did with Regina? How far will Emma go to protect the ones she loves? How does Emma feel about using magic? What price will Emma pay?
Horowitz: We're going to see that the magic within Emma becomes something that's really important to her on her journey of self-discovery this season. And it's definitely something that interests Rumple.
Kitsis: I think there's something about Mr. Gold, which is he's never one to miss an opportunity. […] His wheels were spinning there. He realized that Emma has magic at the end of Episode 9 and he tests her in this episode. When it holds true, I think he thinks, "Ahhh!" It's like looking at someone with whole new eyes. […]
What's interesting this season is we brought magic in the beginning and we know it comes with a price, so as the season goes on, you start to see the price of magic. For instance, in Episode 10, the price is Henry. Emma has to tell Henry that his stepmom killed his shrink. You see how hard it is for Regina to kick magic and you see how magic has come between Rumple and Belle (Emilie de Ravin). I think that is an issue that will be explored all throughout the season. It can come with a price, and sometimes, when it's good magic and it's used for the good of people, the price is different. But magic always comes with a price.
Emma should take a look at Regina before she gets in over her head. After all of these years, Regina continues to pay the ultimate price for using magic. She has isolated herself from everyone and now she has lost her treasured Henry. Kitsis addresses Regina’s ironic dilemma:
Will she find her happy ending? Unfortunately, she hasn't. Of all the characters, it's funny, she may have inflicted the most harm, and yet she has had the most harm inflicted to her.
Now Regina knows that nobody will believe her, including Henry. She has once again become the murderous, banished Evil Queen. Will this extreme situation open her up to Cora’s bad influence once more? Will Regina ever regain Henry’s trust?
Kitsis: I think the tragedy, obviously, is that Regina was telling the truth. At the moment things got hairy, no one believed in Regina, which just shows to Regina that these people will really never forgive her. I think that makes her susceptible to her mom. I would say watch out. […]
The question is when do people find out? The first few episodes are going to explain all of this. Where does Regina go? What happens to her? When do they find out Archie is alive? A lot of those things are going to be played out in the next batch of episodes.
We’ve seen that Regina, like Rumple, is a planner. Unlike the others, Regina knows that somebody has framed her for a heinous crime and she will surely want to make that person pay. When we last see Regina, she watches Henry from a distance. Although she vanished into thin air before the Charming family, Regina is still sneaking around town to stay close to Henry. What should we expect from Regina as the season continues?
“She is laying low and she has a next move,” says Kitsis. ” The real question is, how persuasive is Cora? We know she has a commitment to excellence, so the question is, for someone who has been off magic, will they return [to that way of life]?”
Cora has cleverly set up the perfect scenario to push her daughter back to the dark side. The only thing that will prevent Regina from using magic is Henry. If she loses his trust and love, then she will have no reason left to abstain from practicing the dark arts. It will be fascinating to see how Cora and Regina’s relationship plays out. Will they team up to take Storybrooke down together? Will Regina compete with Cora and try to out-smart her with the powers she developed in her absence? Will Cora try to use her magic to inflict mayhem outside of Storybrooke?
We have a lot to ponder as the season progresses. Every episode raises the stakes for our beloved characters. As they battle an ever-growing source of evil each week, we continue to have faith, like Henry, that good will always win.
What do you think about the new obstacles Storybrookers have to face with Cora and Hook's arrival?
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‘Once Upon A Time’ airs Sundays at 8 p.m. on ABC.