Back in Storybrooke, Cora (Barbara Hershey), Hook (Colin O'Donghue), and Regina (Lana Parrilla) continue to plot the demise of their enemies, and Cora reveals her grand plan to Regina.
I have to say, that the plan is diabolically evil and gives a whole new layers of meaning to the word manipulative. It involves treachery and betrayal, and many lives are at stake. I can already see the battle lines drawn going forward for the balance of the season! And Regina's encounter with Belle may wind up being very costly to all the residents of Storybrooke.
The Fairytale Land story enlightens us as well to Rumple's life before the Ogre Wars. We learn that Rumple went to fight almost happily, trying to escape the taint of his own father's reputation. But when waiting on the front to go into battle, Rumple learns something of his future, but not the entire truth — just enough to cause him a lifetime of trouble and torment. We learn how Rumple got his gift of prophecy, and that although often well-intentioned, Rumple often makes ill-advised choices. No wonder time and experience has rendered him wary. We also learn how Rumple's leg got so badly injured.
There are several developments in "Manhattan" that have me speculating about the show's direction for the remainder of the season. There will certainly be battle lines drawn, and I have some ideas about who will be on which side, but there are several wild cards in the mix as well, and the reveal in the episode's final scene could affect several of the series main characters for better or worse. But more on that Sunday night in print, and then again Monday evening on Let's Talk TV for another all-Once Upon a Time hour. Blogcritics writers JeromeWetzelTV and RHeart Chissy will join me to talk "Manhattan." So stay tuned!
Once Upon a Time airs 8:00 p.m. ET Sunday nights on ABC.