Once Upon a Time Recap: “Sisters”

So far this season, our heroes and villains have been to Camelot and back. Emma is no longer the Dark One, the title having been reclaimed by Rumple. But Killian is lost to the terrors of the Underworld, and our favorite fairy tale gang is out to save him.

Spoilers ahead, dearies.

The Enchanted Forest, long ago

Young Regina is playing with her mother’s wand when it backfires, knocking her into a magical coma. Only someone of the same blood can heal her, but Cora’s out of the picture since it was her magic that caused the trauma in the first place. Desperate, Cora travels to Oz to locate young Zelena. She takes the girl to the Enchanted Forest, and Regina is healed. Although the girls don’t know they are related, they become fast friends. The secret of their heritage is revealed when Zelena accidentally opens Cora’s box where the wand was stored with blood magic after Regina’s accident. When the girls tell Cora how excited they are to learn they are sisters, Cora wipes their memories and returns Zelena to her lowly life in Oz.

The Underworld, present day


In Hades’ realm, we experience the parallel stories of David and James, and Regina and Zelena. While Regina and Cora begin to work together to stop Zelena from falling further in love with Hades, James locks his brother up and pretends to be him for a little while in order to learn the whereabouts of Robin and Zelena’s baby.

Long story short: Cora ends up apologizing to both of her daughters for her mistreatment of them and returns their childhood memories of each other. She moves on to a higher plane. Meanwhile, David escapes from where James locked him up, and they have a fight. James falls into the river and becomes a tormented soul.

Wait, what?

Why the incredibly short recap, you ask?

1.) I’m tired of Cora. At least twice now, I’ve been certain that she was out of the picture, and yet back she came time and time again. Regina has been through a harrowing journey, and to see her abusive and manipulative mother on the screen was both annoying and unnecessary. While family has always been a formative theme on OUAT, there’s no need to beat a dead horse. While I’m glad that Regina and Zelena have a deeper, more complicated bond now, I didn’t see the need for more Cora in order to get there.

2.) So much more could have been done with the rivalry between David and James. But it ended quickly and turned out to mostly be a plot on Cruella’s behalf. I felt this storyline was underutilized, and that disappointed me.

3.) What the hell is going on with Emma? I don’t know if it’s some side effect of being the Dark One, but she’s been so…blase lately. Her voice is flat, she wears that big puffy burrito-looking coat all the time, and she honestly didn’t seem all that concerned when James was impersonating her father and holding an infant at gunpoint.

Give me more Hades. Give me the one-eyed witch and Henry and the romance between Hook and Emma. There is so much more here, just waiting…

Until next time, dearies.

-The Collected Mutineer