ALL FOR ONE, ONE FOR ALL |Belief, if you hadn’t gleaned, is a major theme during this Neverland arc — including the good guys’ faith in being able to coalesce as a unit and endure Neverland’s evils. “Pan is a nasty, nasty character and that is the biggest obstacle for all of us. But the same obstacle for all of us is ourselves,” says Josh Dallas. “It’s about believing in who you are and then compromising as a group to get things done.”
THE PARENT TRAP | As touched on in the season opener, Snow and Emma will struggle to get a handle on their mother/daughter dynamic during this 11-episode Neverland odyssey. “They’re really going to address it this season,” effuses Ginnifer Goodwin. “Every time we went to address it last season, we’d be interrupted by a thrilling plot obstacle, so the fact that we’re now stuck in a place where we have to address this dynamic is everything I’ve ever wanted out of this show.” Add in robust banter between all of the other core characters, and, “We all have said, ‘It feels like the pilot again,'” Goodwin relates.
NO KID GLOVES | An imminent clash with the Lost Boys finds one of our characters about to throttle a lad, raising a question about to what lengths they could/should go to find Henry. Surveying the moral quandary, Goodwin says, “I made a decision as a character, at the end of the first season, that I’m unaffected by anything age-related. I’m the same age as my daughter and we’ve never established that that throws me in any way. So, Snow probably thinks that everyone has to be treated like an adult in some ways. But I do have a line where I get upset about how a young person is being treated.” Plus, Snow is general is pro “life,” even when in battle mode. “She doesn’t kill anybody, under any circumstances,” Goodwin notes. “In every sword fight, in making her way through a castle, in every interaction, she’s always let people live. She did take out an ogre, but he was trying to eat her daughter. So we’re not going to count that.”
THE LOST BOY | Peter Pan (played by Robbie Kay) has thus far only hinted at the broad strokes of his plan for Henry, but here is how Jared Gilmore sums it up: “The Lost Boys and Peter Pan want Henry to save magic… because magic is dying [in Neverland].” And that is a bad thing because…? “If magic is fading, maybe they’re getting older,” Gilmore guesses. “Then they can’t stay young forever in Neverland.”
THE FRENEMY WITHIN | Jennifer Morrison calls the Emma/Regina relationship “drastically changed,” if only by the extreme circumstance — a shared desire to find Henry. “It’s not so much that Emma brushes under the rug all the things that happened before,” says Morrison, “but in terms of what they need at this moment, she’s going to ignore it. And they move forward from there.” As Lana Parrilla notes, “For the first two seasons, all I kept saying was, ‘He’s my son.” and this year, ‘He’s our son, we have to save our son.’ And i like that. I like that they’re coming together. Because the war is not so much between Emma and Regina but Regina and Snow.”
SAVED BY THE BELLE? | As previously scooped, though we won’t check in on Storybrooke anytime soon, Belle resurfaces in this Sunday’s episode, in a very special way. And it’s not a limited engagement. “She definitely appears a few times,” Emilie de Ravin allows. “What kind of Belle it is is the question, and that’s kind of the fun part, because of course she’s also in Storybrooke…. She hasn’t just come around the corner and swam there!” (As for the patient “Rumbelle” fandom, the actress raves, “It’s amazing,” explaining, “The dynamic just clicked…. He’s basically awful to her at times but she’s such a strong person that she can see through that. It’s a full-on all-or-nothing kind of relationship.”)
PAN-DEMONIUM | His minion Felix already brought The Dark One to tears. And this Sunday, when Peter Pan offers Emma a map to find Henry, it comes with a mind-effing caveat. “Pan is omnipresent on the island,” says Jennifer Morrison, “so there is always that foreboding threat for all of us — wondering what he knows, what he doesn’t know, assuming he knows everything and how does that factor into the games he plays with us…. We’re all in incredibly emotional states, wanting to get to Henry, and at the same time trying to be clever enough to figure out what Pan [is up to].”
BABY TALK |TV Guide Magazine recently hinted that one of the Once women might have baby on the brain this season. And many eyes — if only by process of elimination — are on the Charmings. “It’s possible,” Dallas allows. “You’re just going to have keep watching!”