Once Upon a Time “The Final Battle” closed out the stories we all grew to love. As this chapter closed, another one started giving a look into what the future brings.
The final battle, the fated fight between light and dark is finally upon the savior. Only problem? A little curse. One that sent everyone back to where they came from, more or less. As well as, landed Emma in a mental asylum. The concept was simple, the saviors belief kept the story tale realms alive, without her belief…adios. The better part of the two hour finale, Henry spent doing what he does best. Trying to get Emma to believe. Similar to season one but in hyper-drive.
The episode as a whole was great. This was the perfect ending to this story that began during the pilot. The ending had everything you could hope for in a series finale. Down to the last supper as a cast and as the core family. By the end everyone we knew and loved came together for a final meal after a montage showing them happy. Had this been it, it would have been a satisfying conclusion. In a way it was, last week news broke one after the other detailing that six regulars were not returning. This was the end of their journey on this show. The show is going to look very different come September.
Going over everything will take far too long, so here are the highlights and lowlights from the episode.
Rumple fighting the light and dark in himself.
When Henry showed up and didn’t buy Gold’s I don’t know what you’re talking about approach, we found out he was awake. Rumple is always awake. He was awake during the Evil Queen’s curse (ever since the Pilot anyway, hearing Emma’s name). But this little wit is always up and always doing what seems right until he isn’t.
This episode we physically saw what the inner struggle looked like. Bobby Carlyle got to play opposite himself while debating to do the right thing or not. He is possibly the only actor on this show, besides Lana Parrilla, who can do this. In the end, good won. But it wasn’t that easy. The black fairy left a spell behind to continue her mission. I.e. send Gideon off to kill Emma.
The curse is broken by killing the Black Fairy?
A show about hope and love, showing that True Love’s kiss will break any curse, broke one with a murder. Yes, this wasn’t the end per say considering Gideon and Emma still had to fight but, really?! Not going to lie, I was cheering for Rumple for finally standing his ground but this was morbid. Killing her is one thing, having the curse break because of said killing is a whole new ballgame. This brings up the question, if you killed the original person who cast a curse would it have broken in the past. Luckily that’s not what they did or they wouldn’t have had a show.
Season 1 Parallels…. #AllTheFeels
The show brought the story full circle with certain scenes playing out similarly to how they did during season one. With one caveat, they flip flopped the roles. Snow kissed Charming awake instead of Charming kissing Snow awake, etc. This was a poetic note to finish off the story for some vital characters. The first curse broke with Emma kissing Henry’s forehead saying ‘I love you’. This show of maternal love was the truest form to break Regina’s curse. Six years later, Emma’s the one who’s down and the one to wake her up was her son. Saying I love you and kissing her forehead, as a way of saying goodbye. Similar to how Emma did it back in Season 1.
True love’s kiss is powerful, but throughout the course of the seasons this show has shown time and time again that true love isn’t necessarily romantic love. Aside from Snow and Charming, true love’s kiss has almost always been between a parent and child. Closing on this note, on Mother’s day no less, brought the message that love can come in varying ways loud and clear.
Regina and The Evil Queen reuniting
Regina took everyone back to her castle in an attempt to conjure up some magic to take them all back home. Only to realize that half of her supplies were missing. Who took them? Her other half. Who was not squatting in the castle. It was her’s after all. They both show up ready to blaze off whoever is in their house only to realize it’s the other one. It’s confusing. These two are clearly the same person, same antics they are even dressed nearly identical. Something that doesn’t go unnoticed when the two start flirting with each other, much to Zelena’s dismay. The Queen is still a flirt. Some things never change.
Other things do. She’s turned over a new leaf since Regina gave her some of her good. The two are so in tune with one another at one point it is really hard to tell them apart. Especially considering they’re calling each other Regina. The Queen decides to stay back and hold off the curse giving Regina time to start the bean up. As the curse gets closer though, everyone huddles together getting ready to say goodbye. Emma eventually does return and then the curse is broken via Rumple. All is good.
The Evil Queen and Robin
Zelena’s first words to the Queen are what did she do to Robin. To which we find out that not only are these two still very much together, but her love has turned the regular thief into Robin Hood. The one who steals from the rich and gives to the poor. She’s absolutely glowing talking about him. It’s utterly adorable.
Later on, as the happy endings play out we get a little something from Sean. He is credited so the anticipation of his return was there, although only his voice made it to screen. In a scene where he shoots an arrow with a ring attached into her vanity. “Villains don’t get happy endings” is completely smashed in this episode as the Evil Queen get’s hers. Seeing her smile at the end of a season is really something. The one character that has gotten screwed over the most, finally is left to be happy. Both versions of her at that.
Sisters working together
It’s hard to watch without getting emotional knowing that these are the last we’ll see of them. Rebecca Mader is not returning for season 7 and she will be missed immensely. Regina and Zelena have had an uncanny relationship on this show. They’ve gone from wanting to kill one another to love each other. Watching them work together, huddle up together as they think their fate is sealed is special. They’ve overcome a lot and shown that happy endings are about finding your place in this world. One that they found, in each other – in family.
Regina giving Emma advice
As Emma is gearing up to fight Gideon, she’s clearly in need of a hope speech. The Black Fairy had set it up so that whatever happened, light would be diminished. Luckily for her, there was someone with a hope speech ready. An unlikely source, one who hated these for so long, Regina. She’s been on the receiving end of Snow’s hope speeches for so long that she was able to get one together herself. It’s strong enough to give Emma what she needs to do the right thing.
A happy beginning, now, is ours…
As Henry kissed Emma awake, the family group hugged as a montage of happy endings began to play. Set to a beautiful score that included familiar themes from happy moments as well as Tale as old as time for the Rumbelle parts. The realms are all returned to normal. The Evil Queen is back in her castle. And the inhabitants of Storybrooke are smiling. Snow is back to teaching. Emma and Regina are dropping off Henry for school. The dwarves had enough time to surprise Regina with a new door with her true title, Queen. Elsewhere her alter ego is getting engaged. The pace is slower, more relaxed. They’ve fought their fight. This is a new turn for them.
The whole family gathers for a final supper at Granny’s. Rumple joins in. Finally being apart of this family. Everyone together one last time before the current closes on their stories. Everyone smiling and happy. All the babies accounted for. This is their happy ending. The final shot of everyone gathered around is the perfect way to capture their story. This is what the show was about. It was about family, hope, love, and acceptance. The table is surrounded by heroes and villains letting go of those titles and sticking to the only one they need, family.
A chapter’s ending, but the story’s only just begun…
After Henry reads out the passage from the final battle it seems as though the story has come to a close. Which it has, but it’s not the only story out there. Snow gives one of her speeches on how the ending is the happiness it’s the journey and this isn’t their end. There’s plenty left to do. This felt almost as if, this was a speech from the writers to the fans. This part of the story is over, but it’s not the end. There are other stories to be told. Other people with lives just as screwed up as theirs. Yes, this family is getting a moment to take a breather and not worry about the next crisis. But, there are others out there.
The show is resetting. Starting fresh. With Henry being on the receiving end of a door knock this time. He’s older, with a Latina child he didn’t know about. Like mother, like son. Who he banged and knocked up is still a mystery, Violet isn’t Latina last I remember. How only a few family members will play a role and not the others, also a mystery. How will this play out? Is it worth it to keep going after an ending as perfect as they one they played? Only time will tell.
Season 7 will premiere this fall, centering on adult Henry, his daughter Lucy, Regina, Rumple, and Hook.
Goodbye, Bex, Ginny, Josh, Jen, Jared, and Emilie
As this chapter closes, along with it some key players that helped this show. Jennifer Morrison, Ginnifer Goodwin, Josh Dallas, Jared Gilmore, Emilie de Ravin, and Rebecca Mader thank you for all that you did to bring these characters to life. For turning some of the most iconic characters into something we’ve never seen and making us fall in love with them all over again. To Jen and Jared, for bringing these new characters into our lives that will now always play a part in the Disney family. We’re sad to see you go but good luck on all your future endeavors. These characters will live on in our memories, and Netflix subscriptions. Hopefully, this isn’t the last we’ll see of you all but if it is, this was a satisfying way of saying goodbye.
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