'Once Upon a Time' review: 'Sisters'

Though titled "Sisters," this episode was about more than just our beloved Regina and Zelena. Not only did their encounter include Cora, but Prince Charming finally came face to face with Prince James, and Peter Pan made a surprise appearance at the end.


As shocking as it was to discover that The Wicked Witch was The Evil Queen's half sister, it seems even more shocking that they might actually come together as a family. Initially, Regina sent Hook after Cora to enlist her help in destroying Zelena's love for Hades. It was a rescue mission that led to one of the funniest lines yet. Cora calls Hook her fairy godmother!

After Regina explains to Cora what's going on with Zelena, Cora has the bright idea to make Zelena forget about Hades. She tells Regina that all they have to do is get Zelena to drink some of the River of Forgetfulness, a river she knew about from Regina's childhood. Yeah, the one she had Zelena and Regina drink from after they met and found out they were sisters.

Wait, that means that Cora knew where Zelena was and could have intervened in her life at any time and chose not to do so! Then, when she did, it was to get her to heal Regina. It's heartbreaking to see her tell little Zelena that she wants her to help someone dear to her, as if Zelena means nothing. That makes her confession of love for Zelena at the end that much harder to believe.

In case you missed the childhood flashbacks, here's a couple of clips:

Back to the present, Cora shows up at Zelena's to meet her and ask for her forgiveness with a toast. Thankfully, Zelena saw right through it and tossed the drink out. Regina admits to spying on Zelena, and when they are about to go at it, Cora stops them, grabs their hands, brings them together, and gives them back their memories from their childhood. Memories of how badly they each wanted someone to spend time with, a sister, a family. Memories that they found each other and were then ripped apart. After this, Cora moved on, though not exactly how I expected.


James intercepts Charming on his way back from the store. After tasering Charming and locking him up, he goes back to the apartment to impersonate him. Emma's super power, shockingly, seems to be out of commission. So, she takes James with her to deliver the goods (baby supplies) to Robin Hood.

As a side note, I didn't imagine Robin using disposable diapers. I figured they didn't have those back in the Enchanted Forest, and where is he putting them after they've been used?

Anyway,while at the edge of the woods, James reveals his true identity and holds Emma and Robin at gunpoint until Cruella arrives.

Evidently, she knows more than just how to make an entrance. She also appears to know how to pack a punch, although Emma equally knows how to take one.

Cruella then explains that they are there to kidnap baby Hood as a means for her to get her freedom from the Underworld. Next thing you know, they're back at the docks where Hook seems powerless to intervene until Charming shows up. The fight that ensues causes James' gun to go flying. Cruella goes after it, but Hook gets to it first and comments that she couldn't use it anyway. I thought that was hilarious! I didn't know the author's twist on her fate followed her to the Underworld. No wonder she needs "Jimmy."

Anyway, despite Charming's desire to help his brother move on, James ends up in the River of Lost Souls. I'm just wondering why all the fights happen here. I mean it seems too convenient for people to fall, get pushed, or get thrown into eternal despair.

After losing Cora to the light, and possibly losing Zelena to the good side, one may think we've lost all of our evil women, but at least we still have Cruella.

The End

Everyone knows you don't mess with Rumple, and The Lord of the Underworld is no exception! Since Hades continues to hold the contract for Rumple's second born over his head, and Belle's idea of helping was to put herself under a sleeping curse, Rumple was left with few choices. However, the choice he made came as a surprise to me.

The last scene showed Zelena looking into Granny's, watching Hades dance by himself while waiting for her arrival. As she reached for the door, Rumple called to her. He referenced a deal he hadn't considered until she suggested the sleeping curse to Belle. Then, out pops Peter Pan with a bag to put over her head.

I don't know if you were rooting for Zelena to begin working on a happy ending, or if you thought it possible for Hades to become a good guy, but it seems such a fate really isn't in the cards for Zelena. I mean, what is Rumple going to do with her, except try to trade her for his baby? Then, what is Hades going to do? Do you think he'll give in just like that? He's already jaded, this is just going to make him angrier, and if he doesn't choose Zelena, won't she just go back to not trusting him? At least that's what I thought before the following sneak peek was released, and from the looks of it, Zelena was just as surprised. Maybe I'm the one who's jaded.

Tune in to ABC tonight for the next episode to see if Rumple holds up his end of the deal to release Zelena, and to see what kind of deal Hades really makes with Captain Swan. I'll be live tweeting again from @celcafe_live and @carissashuman.

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Carissa Shuman

Carissa is a writer, editor, and artist with a love for science and science fiction.

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