As we've learned, the Snow Queen actually met the savior in the past. Before meeting Emma Swan, though,
FOR THE RECORD
In a previous version of this post, it was incorrectly stated that this episode of "Once Upon a Time" was entitled "Heroes and Villains." It is called "Shattered Sight," and "Heroes and Villains" is next week.
In present-day Storybrooke, though, she has power. Her spell has taken hold of the city as people riot and fight in the street. Even Mary Margaret and Prince Charming are fighting each other while in the jail cells in which they put themselves. They pick at each other over everything from their first meeting, to swaddling their baby boy the correct way. Anna and Kristoff also squabble, because Kristoff has been taken over by the spell, too. Poor Anna.
Anna, Emma and Elsa have to figure out how to combat the spell. Anna tells them that she found out that the Shattered Sight curse by Ingrid was actually part of a fairy tale she knows. The problem: In the fairy tale, the only way to break the spell was to kill the king. In this case, that would be Ingrid. No one wants to kill her, but ...
Besides the Charmings being locked in their jail cells, here's a quick anarchy update:
- Regina, the now once again Evil Queen, is trapped in her vault of hearts (a spell she concocted). For some reason, she decides her contemporary fashion is weird, and goes back to her regal flowing robes with cleavage. And, everything is Emma Swan's fault.
- Rumpelstiltskin is preparing to leave Storybrooke, no matter what the outcome of the curse is, with Belle and Henry and his powers intact. Before that, he needs Hook to go find Henry amid the chaos. When Rumpel takes Belle and Henry away, he'll tell them that the Snow Queen destroyed Storybrooke and he was able to get them out.
- The people of Storybrooke are out in the street slugging each other.
- Belle is somehow asleep during all of this.
Emma and Elsa find Ingrid in her ice lair and confront her, ready to blast her if they have to. But, they can't! The yellow ribbons that are somehow bonded to their wrists make it so that they can't hurt the Snow Queen. And soon, they may force the duo to love Ingrid -- as sisters should. They need a plan. So Emma and Elsa come up with an idea to get out of the yellow ribbons. Let out Evil Queen Regina, who hates Emma, in the hopes that in her hatred she'll blast them hard enough to remove the ribbon from their wrists. Sorry, but that seems like one of the most horrible ideas that Emma has ever come up with.
But it somehow worked. Emma incited Regina to a hatred that was deep enough to blast off the ribbons of love that bound Elsa and Emma to the Snow Queen. They're going back to battle Ingrid -- but there is the small matter of a very upset fireball-throwing monarch.
Back at the jail, Snow White is getting under Anna's skin a bit -- shaking her once pristine view of the princess. "Snow White's a murderer," says Mary Margaret. It's kind of chilling to hear. Hopefully Anna won't crack with all of the verbal jabs thrown at her from Kristoff, David and Snow. But that's the least of her worries as the Evil Queen decides to stop by. Though she hates Emma, there's probably one person that Regina hates even more: Snow White.
Back in the '80s, Ingrid and teen Emma are getting very close. Earlier, rogue teen Emma was about to run away from Ingrid's foster home, and Ingrid was going to let her. They bond over their shared feelings of not belonging or being wanted. But, Ingrid wanted Emma to know that she cared. Over time, it seems as if that's true. Ingrid is actually a nice foster mom. Emma's power is apparently so immense that she can even affect the great pick-a-stuffed-animal claw carnival game that everyone loses at. Ingrid even decides that she will try to adopt Emma.
Problem is, underneath the love, there lies a bit of crazy -- or at least, crazy to a non-magical teen in the '80s. Ingrid tries to force the magic to come out of Emma by standing them in front of an oncoming car. The car swerves, and no magical blast comes forth. Ingrid tells Emma that she has power inside of her. "Like Harry Potter?" says Emma. "No, Emma. That's fiction," says Ingrid. Though we all want magic, saying that to an untrusting, runaway-loving teen orphan was a little too much. Emma leaves her.
An aside: Back in present-day Storybrooke, Emma's offspring Henry is also adept at outrunning adults when he feels threatened. Hook has found the spot that Regina hid Henry in, but can't coax the teen out of his hiding place. Using a magical item given to him by Rumpel, Hook is able to cut through the wards protecting Henry, and go in after him. Henry, though, hits the pirate and runs. Lucky for him, Hook is held up by a spell-affected Will Scarlet, who finally wants to have a word with Hook about how he's treated him. Wham! Hook just knocks Will out, but Henry has already gotten away.
At the jail, the fight of the season is taking place. The Evil Queen has gotten rid of Anna and Kristoff, so now it's Regina vs. Mary Margaret! For some egotistical reason, Regina says no magic, and they'll fight with swords -- so she arms Snow! They fight, and Regina mostly has the upper hand, until she decides to threaten Prince Neal. Mary Margaret goes a bit crazy, and ends up throwing Regina through a glass door. That's when Regina lashed out with magic. No fair! She now has the upper hand again, but why did Regina think that she could beat Snow with swords anyway?
Back to the Snow Queen. Emma and Elsa reach Ingrid again and are preparing to fight her. Ingrid, though, decides that she should give Emma and Elsa back their memories so that they can/will remember how much they actually do love her.
How did she get Emma's memories? Back in Maine, 2001, Snow Queen makes it to Storybrooke. She opens an ice cream shop, and she runs into Emma. It's early in her Storybrooke history, so Emma still doesn't really believe in magic, and has harbored the contention that Ingrid is crazy because she left her way back when. Ingrid decides to take away any memories of her that she had.
Again back in the present, Kristoff and Anna fight -- verbally. They're walking along the shore and Kristoff is planning on leaving and going back to Arendelle. Not able to stop him, Anna picks up a bottle and knocks him out. In the bottle that she used, Anna finds a letter from her parents, one that could turn the tide of the whole battle.
In the battle with Ingrid, she knows the only way to stop the spell or to stop her is to kill her. She knows that Emma and Elsa don't have the heart to do it, but Emma seems game to try. As they prepare for battle, Anna runs in. She calms the two sides and begins to read the letter aloud. It is written by Ingrid's sister and Elsa and Anna's mom, Helga. In it, she apologizes to Ingrid for how they treated her, and lays out a way that Anna and Elsa can make sure to return everyone in Arendelle's memories of Ingrid and their other sister.
Ingrid can't believe it. Surely, her sister hated her and how special she was, but this note seems to spin all of that around. It warms her heart, and she realizes that she has to reverse the spell. To do that, the Snow Queen will have to sacrifice herself and pull the spell back into her being somehow. While doing this, she returns Emma's and Elsa's memories. That, of course, makes it harder on them to watch as Ingrid destroys herself to save everyone else.
"All I wanted was to have my sister's love." Well, thanks to Helga's letter and Anna's luck, she realizes that she did have that, and she sacrifices herself willing and happily. Her end, after so much buildup, seemed a bit ... tidy. No, she may not have been an evil person since she just wanted the love of her family, but her redemption just seemed very ... tidy. It was a majestic end for the Snow Queen, though.
Dwarf on dwarf abuse ends, as does fighting between everybody else. Snow and Regina share a laugh as Regina questions her wardrobe choices once the spell lifts, where moments before she and Snow were about to actually try to kill each other. They all meet on the street in the middle of Storybrooke, happy that the worst was over.
Rumpel, though, still wants to leave. Ominously, he tells Hook that Emma and the residents of Storybrooke are safe from him once he leaves, but the rest of the world needs to be fearful.