ABC’s Once Upon a Time threw curveballs at two frequently tested romances, by revealing that Zelena (as “Marian”) conceived Robin’s baby, while Rumple wore his (er, Belle’s) heart on his sleeve during a very tender moment.
Elsewhere, Emma reunited with childhood pal Lily, who it turns out is wholly aware of her fantastical lineage, and thus has a bone to pick with the Charmings.
Once co-creators Adam Horowitz and Eddy Kitsis previewed for TVLine this Sunday’s penultimate Season 4 episode (ABC, 8/7c), which also marks the return of Barbara Hershey as Cora.
TVLINE | Are we going to get more reaction from Robin Hood, to Zelena’s masquerade and pregnancy? I was surprised that he wasn’t more affronted by what was foisted upon him, and instead was all, “I cahn’t leave her here”?
ADAM HOROWITZ | He didn’t seem affronted? I guess we cut out pretty fast….
EDDY KITSIS | We are going to get into his reaction and give it a proper “What just happened?!” scene in this week’s episode.
HOROWITZ | There’s a pretty extensive scene at the beginning, where we get his reaction.
KITSIS | He and Regina have a pretty lengthy talk about it.
TVLINE | In an ideal world, do you commit a whole episode to a drawn-out court trial about the custody ramifications for a baby conceived in such a way?
HOROWITZ | Custody is discussed!
TVLINE | What role will this week’s Cora/Regina flashbacks play?
KITSIS | Cora is back to help Regina figure out who her own worst enemy is.
TVLINE | I see the Sheriff of Nottingham among the guest stars roster. Does Robin appear in the flashbacks as well?
KITSIS | We will definitely be seeing the world of Nottingham….
HOROWITZ | Some Sherwood Forest action is on its way.
TVLINE | Has Emma effectively tempered down Lily’s bloodthirst, or will meeting her mother, Maleficent, charge Lily back up?
KITSIS | Lily is going to get charged back up a bit. We’re going to get a little more insight into her and how she feels about herself.
TVLINE | So even though Emma spared her life, she’s still gunning for the Charmings?
KITSIS | Anger doesn’t go away in one night.
HOROWITZ | Lily has spent many years dealing with the anger of what Snow and Charming did to her, so it’s going to take her a bit to either get over it or embrace [vengeance].
KITSIS | Just because she and Emma had a nice scene on the highway doesn’t mean that it’s over.
TVLINE | One might think that having spared Lily, Emma has stepped off of the dark path she was on. Or is that not the case?
KITSIS | Emma is definitely tested on this road of darkness, and where she ends up is going to be up in the air for the next three episodes. But she has a strong heart, so it’s going to take more than just a woman holding a gun to her kid’s head to turn her.
TVLINE | Is there anything left to agitate Emma over these next three hours…?
KITSIS | There’s always stuff to agitate Emma.
TVLINE | What is Isaac’s agenda anymore? If you awarded him free reign, what would he do right now?
KITSIS | We are going to answer that question, visually, in the finale (airing May 10).
TVLINE | Does he miss being the Author?
KITSIS | How he feels about being the Author and what kind of Author he’d like to be gets answered in the first act of the finale.
TVLINE | What are we to make of the look Belle gave us as Rumple walked away after restoring her heart?
HOROWITZ | Ahhh, what a look that was….
KITSIS | That look said to me she isn’t over him. But that doesn’t mean she’s ready to forgive him, either. That’s the thing about that man and why he told us he’s a difficult man to love. Because just when we’re ready to hate him, he does something completely selfless like get your heart back and then not ask for anything in return — and does not kill your new boyfriend.
HOROWITZ | I’ll just say that I loved that moment that you pointed out. Emilie [De Ravin] was just wonderful the way she played that. Without any dialogue, what she said about how she feels I thought was beautiful.
TVLINE | That entire scene was very romantic, I thought. How beyond restoring her heart, Rumple entrusted it to Will, acknowledging his own unworthiness.
HOROWITZ | There has been a nobility in all the crazy, horrible things he has done, and that’s been one of the contradictions at the heart of Rumple from the beginning, that we love exploring. Belle is completely aware of that and tuned into it, and that’s what you saw in that scene — she could see that the “difficult to love” man who has done terrible things is also an honorable, beautiful man as well. She’s torn up by that as much as he’s torn up himself.
TVLINE | Can you promise in these final three hours any similarly grandly romantic scenes between any characters?
KITSIS | I would say that we probably have at least two more. And a third one is romantic in its own way.
NEXT WEEK: Horowitz and Kitsis teases the two-hour finale and its (hopefully still-)secret scene, and answer perhaps the most burning question of all.