‘Once Upon A Time’: A Fairy’s Tale With a Twist

Published 2 years ago by

Once Upon A Time Season 3 Episode 3 Tinker Bell Once Upon A Time: A Fairys Tale With a Twist

Season 3 of Once Upon A Time is set primarily in Neverland, and since that island is home to one of the most iconic Disney characters, it only makes sense for Tinker Bell (Rose McIver) to make her grand entrance in, “Quite a Common Fairy.” After all, we met Hook (Colin O’Donoghue) last season, then Pan (Robbie Kay) and a few of the Lost Boys in the season premiere, so it’s only fair Tink gets her turn in the spotlight.

The storytelling in this episode is a nice return to the format that worked so well back in season 1, where the story set in the Enchanted Forest’s past heavily informs what’s going in whatever present mess the Storybrooke crew finds itself. And when the Fab Five find themselves following a rigged map and Hook suggests that they look Tink up only to have Regina (Lana Parrilla) nix the idea right away, you know this history isn’t going to be pretty.

When we first meet her, Tink is bubbling with that annoying perkiness that seems to inhabit all of the OUAT heroes at some point, and she attempts to do what others have tried – and failed – before her: redeem Regina. This is a young Regina, not too long after her marriage to the king, so redemption is within the realm of possibility, but still unlikely.  With Regina’s track record, however, the major plot twist is not that she lies to Tink about the man with the lion tattoo and ruins her life; the twist, rather, is the dark, embittered ex-fairy who meets up with the present-day Regina in the Neverland jungle.

Once Upon A Time Season 3 Episode 3 Tinker Bell Regina Once Upon A Time: A Fairys Tale With a Twist

Just as Hook is a quasi good guy and Pan is more than slightly demented, this Tink looks nothing like her Disney counterpart. Her brilliant greens have been traded for black, her chipper outlook turned sour, and she’s been stripped both of her wings and fairy dust. At least they kept the cool treehouse.

This twist makes it a bit more difficult to tell what she’s going to do when she literally has Regina’s heart in her hands, and lends a bit more weight to Regina’s pleas to choose hope over anger. It will take Snow’s (Ginnifer Goodwin) offer of a home to persuade Tinker Bell to give them what little help she has left. And while she can only promise them one shot at sneaking into Pan’s lair, it’s one shot more than they started with.

Once Upon A Time Season 3 Episode 3 Neal Once Upon A Time: A Fairys Tale With a Twist

The “one shot” theme runs rampant throughout Neal’s (Michael Raymond-James) part of the story as well. Robin Hood’s (Sean Maguire) one shot to save his little boy years ago was the Dark One, and Neal is all too happy to cash in on his dad’s favor for his one shot to get to Neverland. Meanwhile, all of the heavy foreshadowing that’s been closing in on Mulan (Jamie Chung) pays off when she finally musters the courage to go home and tell Philip (Julian Morris) he’s her one shot at true love. Too bad Aurora (Sarah Bolger)  interrupts her to announce gleefully that Philip is her baby daddy.

A final twist comes right at the end when Mulan joins Robin’s Merry Men and the camera zooms in on the hooded archer’s wrist. A wrist with a lion tattoo. The same one Tinker Bell pointed out to Regina way back in the day.

Could Robin Hood really be Regina’s one remaining shot at true love? How might they cross paths again since she’s in Neverland and he in the Enchanted Forest? Will Emma and Neal cross paths soon now that he’s made it to Neverland? And what does that bit of parchment with a certain boy’s portrait mean for Operation: Henry?


Once Upon A Time returns next Sunday with “Nasty Habits” @8pm on ABC.

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  1. I could understand linking Tinkerbell to the Blue Fairy but to Regina didnt make sense.

    • Seriously?? By that logic they shouldn’t be doing a Neverland story eitehr since it doesn’t link to Snow White or Rumple or anyone else for that matter. That is what the show does- it mixes fairy tales and their characters together.

  2. I think Mulan is a lesbo and actually has the hots for Aurora

    • ROFL.. you cheated and read it elsewhere.. but it’s “bi” not lesbian.

  3. Am I the only one who thinks that Mulan is not in love with Phillip but with Aurora?? She even stated that she was there to see her- not Phillip. Why would she tell Aurora she was in love with her husband without telling him first??

    • She actually says she needs to speak with Auora when told Philip wasn’t there. So ya, she’s into her not Philip.

      • The “this is Disney at the 8 o’clock hour” part of me thinks she was merely giving Aurora the heads up that she was telling Philip her true feelings, I’ll admit that my first thought was, “AH! Does she love Aurora?!?”

        Hmm… which is worse: MuLip or MuRa? ;)

  4. Thats kind of funny i wasn’t the only thinking that.

  5. Those gals are cute! I am no fairy, so they can tinker with my bell anytime!

  6. In Neverland: So not much story progress happened here. Essentially character personalities and relationships were confirmed. For instance Charming seems to be the self sacrificing character that we already expected from him since he isn’t planning on telling Snow he is injured. Hook seems to be sticking with his amiable attitude shown with his concern for Charming and Regina while still an antagonist in her own way, she has reaffirmed her being a good mother and a team player. I really liked the bonding moment between Snow and Emma where they shared their poor past living situations. I like the subtly of Peter Pan’s influencing Henry though I really hope Henry isn’t the saviour. I’m not a big fan of his and the whole first two seasons were about how Emma was the saviour. Also, every time Felix comes onto the screen I get chills from his presence. He is just too interesting and has a dark aura around him

    In the Enchanted Forest: I like Robin Hood being both a loving father as well as the leader of the merry men and I like the connection they made with him and Regina; it should be interesting if they ever meet to see how their dynamic works out. I don’t care for Neal/Baefire too much and I’m not really happy that he didn’t spend too much time in the Enchanted Forest and was relocated so fast. So I’m a little confused I once believed that Mulan like Prince Phillip but now I think it’s Aurora who she really likes. That wouldn’t be too surprising but I was surprised that they actually ended up doing it.

    The Past: I thought it was interesting how they played out Tinker Bell’s back story. I thought it was going to have to do with something in Neverland and was surprised when it really started in the Enchanted Forest with the Evil Queen. I thought it was really well played out, a great costume, and a good actress choice (played by Rose McIver). It was interesting that Tinker Bell was trying to find love for the Evil Queen and even more interesting who that was.

    I rate this episode 6.5 out of 10.