Once Upon A Time: “Souls of the Departed”

8 returning cast members,
3 killer Evil Queen outfits,
2 scenes that made me cry like a baby,
and 1 new Lord of Purgatory sums up to be a really incredible 100th episode. And, next week’s might be just as good.

There was only one choice for who should open this episode. Only one returning cast member made sense. I didn’t realize it going in, but once I saw it…this episode couldn’t have started any other way. It was beautiful and a perfect way to start with the finished business…at an amusement park.

The episode just kept getting better from there and although this quest is about Emma and Hook, this episode was all about our favorite character: Regina. I think 99 out of 100 OUAT watchers will agree that while Emma is billed as the main character, Lana Parilla runs this show. To pay homage to the fact that Regina is what keeps people watching, this episode was all about her. We see the final moment where there is no more bad in Regina. She is all good guy now. Many characters return from Regina’s past in this episode. Sadly, Daniel doesn’t make an appearance, but another important man in her life does and he is the best and most surprising returning character of the episode.

However, it ain’t Storybrook without a good Evil Queen flashback and, of course, the flashbacks in this episode have awesome costumes. If there is anything OUAT does well it’s dresses for the Evil Queen. As much as a love modern Regina, seeing her be bad is pretty awesome and these flashbacks let us re-live the evil days.

In the past, and the present, playing opposite Regina is her mother. Who else would be Mayor of the Damned? Cora is her classic, terrible, self expecting everyone else to be as selfish as she is. But, we have to thank Cora because without her we wouldn’t have the touching and enduringly complex character that is Regina. When Lana Parilla cries…the fandom cries with her.

Aside from Cora there are numerous returning characters, one of whom even keeps up what can only be described as The Rumpelstiltskin Museum filled with treasures from previous episodes. While not everyone we want makes a comeback this episode, I suspect we may see more returns this season.

I didn’t remember how many subplots this show has had until I saw how many dead people there were. Even with the numerous fairytale shoutouts from past episodes, including a Brave-related Easter egg, they manage to include more! We meet the witch from Hansel and Gretel as well as our newest big bad and his wicked hair-do.

Bring your excited squeals and a box of tissues to this one folks. This episode does honor to the show and deserves the role of the 100th episode. I’m especially pumped about the fact that we get to stay in Purgatory for a while it seems. We have a new big bad, multiple quests, and room for new heroes. Things just got interesting…

Procrastination and Giggles,
The Red Queen

P.S. OUAT got renewed for a 6th season… MOARRRR OUAT!!!!!