It was exactly five years ago today that Once Upon a Time served up one of its most anticipated moments, one-and-a-half seasons into its run.
In “Manhattan” (which aired Feb. 17, 2013), Emma Swan and Mr. Gold/Rumplestiltskin trekked to the titular metropolis to track down the latter’s son Baelfire, who long ago had slipped through a Fairy Tale Land portal to wind up here, in the Land Without Magic.
“When I first read this script, it sort of felt like a season finale,” Jennifer Morrison told TVLine at the time. “So much that has been building up for so long happens all at once in this episode. It’s definitely a payoff to a lot of questions.”
Payoff, indeed. In the clip above (courtesy of The Tuba Guy), Gold sics onetime bail bondsperson Emma on his son, who’s making a break for it after being spotted hopping off a fire escape. Emma, of course, was not at all ready for who she would find upon tackling her target — Henry’s baby daddy, Neal Cassidy.
Then, in the first of the two clips below, Morrison and Michael Raymond-James share a truly terrific scene, as Emma and Neal, away from the trappings of the fantastical worlds to which they’ve been exposed, openly and (pretty much) honestly hash out the why of their separation 11 years prior. The second clip below, meanwhile, finds Neal/Baelfire barging in on a row between Emma and Gold, thus reuniting father and son… and then, much as Emma tried to avoid it, uniting another father and son, once Neal lays eyes on Henry.
Revisit those reunion scenes above and below and share your memories of when they first played on on your TV box. Once Upon a Time returns with new episodes on Friday, March 2.