This week on ‘Once Upon A Time,’ we’re about to go into hiatus mode. This can only mean an episode that will leave us wanting more! With the previews, it has been said that there will be a death in Storybrooke, could tonight be that night? This episode is also the first episode that I’ll be writing as it goes on, and not broken into “Story Time” and “Real Time” since it actually intermingles this week.
We start off this week with Sheriff Graham playing darts at the diner. He hits the deer perfectly twice, and the reporter (whom we’ve seen previously talking with Regina about Emma) bets him $20 he couldn’t do it again. He does, and tells Ruby that the reporter will be paying the next round. Emma walks in, and when she tries to walk away, he stops her by throwing a dart at the wall by her head. In her protests he tells her “I never miss.” Emma is still upset with him after finding out about his love affair with Regina, and she continues to walk away. Graham chases after her, telling her to stop, that he doesn’t feel anything when he’s with Regina. She eventually stops, and Graham kisses her. During the kiss, Graham sees flashes into his previous life, with a white wolf with one red eye and one black. Stepping away startled, Emma tells him that whatever he’s looking for he won’t find it with her. Looking bewildered, he runs to Regina’s and kisses her the same way, but does not see the flashes.
Regina, on the other hand, does, and flashes back in to her castle, where Snow White is placing a white rose on her fathers tomb. The Evil Queen consoles Snow, telling her if she needs anything to come to her for comfort. While walking to her private room, the Mirror tells the Queen that her revenge is almost complete. He asks if Snow knows that the Queen is responsible for her fathers death, and the Queen laughs and tells him that she sought comfort with her. It took everything to not kill her there, but the kingdom loves her and this phase of the revenge must go to plan. The kingdom (and us viewers) don’t know what Snow did to her.
The Queen begins to seek someone to kill Snow, someone with no heart, a Huntsman. We then see an arrow pierce a deer, and Sheriff Graham is shown to be the Huntsman. As the Huntsman removes the arrow, he apologizes to the deer for his sacrifice as the Wolf looks on. Graham wakes up in a sweat at Regina’s house, and wakes her up. He tells her of the intense dream he had. She tries to soothe him and get him to come back to bed, but he decides to leave. He tells her “It didn’t feel like a dream, it felt like a memory.” He goes back to Granny’s where he left his car, but drops his keys before he gets in. He looks up and sees the Wolf staring at him, and then walks away. Graham falls over against the car in response.
Meanwhile, back at the apartment, Emma throws away flowers that are left on the table thinking they were left for her by Graham. Mary comes in and tells her that they were for her from Dr. Whale, and that she felt bad for having a one night stand with him. Emma doesn’t understand why she would feel bad about that, and Mary backhandedly insults her, saying that Emma puts up a wall. Emma protests, but Mary tells her that she has feelings for Graham and that it’s obvious to everyone around her except apparently her.
Graham is in the forest chasing after the wolf when he stumbles across Mr. Gold who was doing some gardening. After telling him about the real/dream/story Wolf, Mr. Gold tells him that “Dreams are memories. Memories of another life.” We flash to Story Time here, where the Huntsman and the Wolf go into an inn where they are mocked and fought with over the apologies to kills. Huntsman tells the other hunters that “Animals are pure of heart, not selfish and self serving like people.” The Wolf growls at one of the other hunters, and he takes it as a threat. A physical fight breaks out in the bar, and when a mirror shatters, we see the Queen watching the Huntsman. She says that he is perfect, and demands that he is brought to her immediately.
In real life, Graham finally catches up to the Wolf he saw when he was near the car, who responds to his whistle. When he goes to pet the wolf, he sees flashes of the day he was to kill Snow in Story Time. The Wolf has disappeared, and he runs to find Mary. While that is going on, we are brought to Story Time. The Huntsman and the Queen talk, and she offers him a place in her court for the death of someone. He says he doesn’t want to be her pet, but if she protects the wolves from being hunted he will do what she asks. She says that it’s easy enough, and he accepts that he will kill Snow White and bring her heart to the Queen.
Graham and Mary talk in her classroom about when they first met and how neither of them can remember when that was. Graham thinks he might have hurt her, either in a past life or a past that they can’t remember together. Mary asks if he’s been talking to Henry, but he has no idea what she is talking about. Mary notices that Graham has a fever, and tells him to go home and get some rest. He then goes to see Henry, and asks if he’s in the book.
In Story Time, Snow and the Huntsman walk in the forest, heading to the new place that Snow will be staying at. She offers him an apple, which he refuses. She tells him that out of her fathers men, he has not offered his condolences and he doesn’t know how to wear his armor. Knowing that the Queen sent him to walk her, she knocks him over and runs, realizing that he was sent to kill her. The Huntsman soon catches up with her, as she is sitting and writing furiously. Snow knows that she doesn’t know the forest that well, and that he’ll just find her eventually. She asks that after he kills her that he gives the Queen a letter she wrote, and to tell the Queen she means every word of it. He reads it, and stares at her in disbelief. Looking like he is going to stab her, he cuts a flute out of a piece of hollow grass and tells her to use it if she needs help. He then tells her to run, and walks back to the castle.
Regina and Emma bicker in the Sheriffs office again, this time about Graham. Regina tells Emma to back away from him, that she is leading him on a path to self destruction. Back in Henry’s room, they discover that Graham was the Huntsman. Henry tells him the that he shouldn’t be afraid of the Wolf, it is his friend and his guide. He also tells him that after the Queen discovered that the Huntsman didn’t kill Snow that she ripped out his heart so that he’d never feel anything again. While looking at the pictures in the book, he notices a symbol that he had saw in his flashes and asks Henry about it. Henry tells him that’s where the Queen stored his heart.
Graham decides that the Wolf wants him to find his heart. He runs outside where Emma finds him, and tells him to go home. He tries to convince her that he needs to find his heart, and when she shows him that his heart is beating in his chest, they both see the Wolf. They both chase after the Wolf into a cemetery, where they find a mausoleum with the symbol at the top of it. They break in, and search the place. Regina comes up to the door asking what is going on. She tries to convince Graham to go home, but he breaks up with her. He tells her that nothing would be better than what they have. Regina blames Emma, but she turns it around on her, saying that Henry came to find her, that Graham kissed her, so obviously Regina herself is the one to blame. There is a small physical fight, where Regina punches Emma in the face, and Emma returns the punch, but Graham separates them. Emma says its not worth it and walks away. Regina looks to Graham to be consoled, but Graham walks away.
Back in Story Time, the Huntsman reads Snows letter aloud to the Queen. She offers herself as sacrifice and understanding the revenge so that the Queen will rule the kingdom with a fair and unbiased hand. The Queen burns the letter, and the Huntsman protests, saying that she offered herself to the lives of others. The Queen takes Snow’s heart and puts it in a box in a vault, but when the magic vault doesn’t open she realizes it’s not Snows heart at all. She is furious with the Huntsman for trying to trick her, and rips out his heart. She tells him that he is now her pet, and if he ever disobeys her all she has to do is squeeze his heart. She demonstrates, which puts him on the ground. She tells him “Your life is now in my hands, forever.”
Graham treats Emma’s wound while Regina goes into the mausoleum. She opens the tomb to her father’s grave and goes down a staircase, where the vault of hearts is stored. She pulls out a box, and the Huntsman’s heart is stored there. After Graham treats Emma, Emma kisses him and all of his memories come back. He tells her that he remembers everything, but before they kiss again, Regina squeezes his heart into dust, killing him and leaving Emma to weep over his body.
So this episode was definitely the one to watch before the hiatus, and they kept their promise, there was a death in Storybrooke. I felt that it was a little predictable, but well thought out and played out well. I will miss seeing Graham, as I really enjoyed his character (and he wasn’t too bad on the eyes either!)
If you thought one character was going to die in Storybrooke, did you pick Graham? Or did you pick someone else? What do you think we will see when we come back from the hiatus in January? Will you still be tuning in?