*A lot of people have come up with this theory, but it’s so perfect I had to write it down.
They say you learn the most from your mistakes. Mine came as I was watching “Murder Most Foul” and Charming said this:
I hadn’t really been paying enough attention to realize that he was talking about the sleeping curse that the Evil Queen had placed on him and Snow, so my mind immediately went to: What other curse needs to be broken? Luckily for me there is another curse that needs to be broken. Many of you know this, but it’s the curse that is keeping everyone in Storybrooke.
What we don’t realize is which part of the curse is still active. It’s not the dark aspects of the Dark Curse - that was broken by Emma as was prophesied/dictated by Rumpelstiltskin. No, it’s the other part that the pesky imp created that is trapping everyone here still.
The Savior curse. Think about it. The only reason Emma Swan is the Savior is because Rumplestiltskin made it so. In theory, Emma was no longer supposed to be the Savior after she broke the Dark Curse. Everyone was supposed to go back to where they were from, but that didn’t happen. Which means what? That portion of the curse, that tiny little drop, is a curse all in itself, and it too needs to be broken. When it is, Emma’s fate as the Savior will be broken; she will live.
Now you ask: But Emma was given the Shears of Destiny or whatever to cut herself from her fate and no longer be the Savior and she didn’t take it!
Well, we know how Rumple’s curse works right? A pair of pretty scissors wouldn’t break this curse because only one person has that power: Emma herself.
We’ve come full circle. Once upon a time Adam and Eddy pitched the idea that the curse would take seven years to fully break. Now we’ve reached that point. Once Emma breaks the Savior curse, Rumple’s spell that he placed on her life will break. Her Hero’s Journey will be complete, and she will return to her life in the real world, where no one needs her to protect them.
(I’ll come back to this in a minute)
So we know what needs to happen. Here I take it a step further and answer:
It turns out that we have that answer too:
Ah yes. True Love. Here’s where I know I’ll lose half of you because “Once Upon a Time is obsessed with Captain Swan. Why can’t you see that, you’re blinding yourself, stop perpetuating nonsense, wake up blah blah blah blah.”
Well, I’m going to counter that with: Why is Emma still the Savior then? If Once Upon a Captain Swan is genuinely the entire point of this show, why is Emma still fated to die?
Answer: You can’t break a curse where you’re the Savior of the fairytale characters with one of the said fairytale characters.
Here you respond again with: “Well, Smartypants, you call yourself a Swan Queen shipper, but you’ve just contradicted yourself. You think the Evil Queen can break the curse with Emma? She’s a fairytale character too!”
Well, reader, you are very clever indeed. But shall I provide you with my next exhibit:
While it was super fun to watch, Split Queen was not just done for the optics. It was a setup for endgame. The Evil Queen may be a fairytale character, but Mayor Regina Mills (like Emma and Henry) is a completely original creation of our world. Which means, like Emma, the daughter of Prince Charming and Snow White, she can live a completely normal life outside of the Enchanted Forest.
I was trying to figure out the purpose behind bringing Wish Robin Hood back, and this line really explains it:
The writers are priming us for a much bigger version of this concept. Robin is the first test of the portal system. Will it allow someone who isn’t supposed to be “real” stay in the “real world”? We know Storybrooke, by our standards, isn’t a real place, it’s a refuge for fairytale characters from many realms, so it makes sense that he passes the test in this case, but what about Regina? Will she, a person who isn’t supposed to be real, be allowed to live somewhere like Boston or New York if Storybrooke doesn’t exist. This first trial proves that yes, she will be able to because something about her is connected to our world (that thing is literally the writers themselves). They have Regina grapple with this issue- Why was wish Robin able to come here?- because she’s next, and she needs to know that she’ll be okay when she tries to stay in this world.
If Regina remains unconnected to the Evil Queen, she should be able to help Emma break the curse and remain in this reality. Will it really be True Love’s Kiss that frees Emma from the Savior Curse and sends everyone to where they belong?
I would hope.
I also hope that I’ll find $2000 on the street tomorrow, but that doesn’t mean it’ll happen.
But it’s certainly the most reasonable solution since literally every curse is broken with True Love’s Kiss…
Have you ever wondered why there’s never been a True Love’s Kiss with Emma & her parents or Emma with Hook? Perhaps part of that is because True Love’s Kiss can only work with people who are from the same reality. Since Regina had True Love’s Kiss with Henry, that means she’s a part of his reality. Part of her belongs in our world. Emma has never shared True Love’s Kiss with Hook because he isn’t a part of her reality. He’s still a fairytale character. They can get married, she can choose that life, but that means she will remain tied to her fate as the Savior. She will always be connected to the Fairytale world. She will eventually die for them.
But if somehow, Regina Mills is Emma’s true True Love; if two “real people” who were created in this world- Emma Swan the bail bonds person, and Regina Mills the Mayor- shared True Love’s Kiss (not saying they’ll make it gay like they should) then the entire curse could be broken.
I just don’t see any other way they could go with this. The show has always foreshadowed that Storybrooke isn’t supposed to last.
We know there’s going to be a “reset” for the show…
And we know that Regina is no longer connected to the Evil Queen. Everything is setting up for the fairytale characters to return to their world.
But what happens next?
A good story always comes full circle, but the hero returns home with more knowledge and is in a better place. Odysseus goes on a crazy journey with a bunch of messed up shit but eventually makes it back home. Dorothy wishes she could experience life over the rainbow, but when she does, she learns that there’s no place like home. Harry Potter steps onto Platform 9 ¾ for the first time alone, and in the last book he steps on with a family. So if in the Pilot we see Emma in her lonely Boston apartment, wishing on a star to no longer be alone, it only makes sense that the last time we see her, she’s in her Boston apartment but she isn’t alone- she has a family.
We know Henry will be a part of that family, but it’s safe to assume that Regina will be there too, because of this promise:
Unfortunately all magic comes with a price, and my prediction is that price will be that everyone forgets that any of this ever happened.
I’m grounding this theory in the fact that the last time there was a reset, that happened to half of the parties involved: Emma and Henry
In that scenario, the Dark Curse was destroyed. The Dark Curse’s purpose was to create Storybrooke, so once it was gone, Emma and Henry forgot that Storybrooke ever existed… But everyone in the Enchanted Forest still remembered Emma and Henry because the Savior Curse still existed- they all remembered the Savior. They were able to go back and get her and recreate the bridge between our worlds because Emma was still the Savior. Once the Savior Curse is gone, everything will be wiped out. Everyone will forget that the Savior existed, and why she existed. All the fairytale characters will return to their world where their stories will play out, and all the characters from our world will begin to lead a normal life.
That life for Emma and Regina could very well be together. It’s not guaranteed, but it would certainly explain why the writers have made an effort to keep Emma and Regina apart in Storybrooke while maintaining a certain amount of tension between them- because their story isn’t meant to play out in Storybrooke. It would also explain why it’s not a topic of conversation for any of the writers or actors- it’s a major plot point, and talking about it would be a spoiler. Lastly, Adam Horowitz said himself that they weren’t queerbaiting:
If they’re planning on having Regina be a part of Emma’s new life free from the Savior curse, then technically this isn’t a lie.
But could they make it so that Emma and Regina’s relationship is merely as platonic co-parents in the real world? Of course. But at the end of the day we would still be right: Swan Queen would still technically be endgame, and it’s still a hell of a lot better than Captain Swan.
I’ve said in the past that the thing I love most about their kisses is how each one of them is different, yet express so much and is amazing on its own.
It was very hard to peak my faves, and even more hard to rate them, but I knew what I was entering when I decided to do this project lol.
My first choice was the flowers kiss because there was never a kiss that was so perfectly located in the history of television. This was right out of a fairy tale. The second was their first kiss because it felt like so much sexual tension was exploding at once, but in the most synced way.
1) In Emma’s wish world, Emma gets an “anti meet cute” with fat, old, drunk Hook which debunks the theory that CS are meant to be together in every timeline and every universe. When August asked Emma who Old Hook was she sheepishly answered that she “sort of” lived with him… then proceeded to fling him away and made fun of his weight before making him disappear as if he were just a roadblock in her way.
2) Emma was so disappointed that Wish!Hook was a fat drunk (”I really need to get home and get someone off the rum“) so she asked the real Hook to give up drinking (”We’re gonna switch to water“)… and guess what? Hook has shown no signs of quitting in later episodes (“Captain Morgan, I thought we were sticking to water?” / “Any of you lads old enough to drink rum?“ / “I’ll bring the rum”). Hook clearly has a drinking problem but if Emma is his true love, shouldn’t he listen or make an effort to give up a bad habit for her? But then again this is the same guy that killed an innocent man even though she begged him not to…
3) Hook KILLED Emma’s grandfather for senseless sport in an episode named “Murder Most Foul” so no I didn’t imagine that. To make matters worse, Hook proposes to Emma instead of confessing the truth like Archie suggested he should… and the proposal happened in an episode titled “Ill-Boding Patterns” which means foreboding evil; inauspicious; unlucky (oops?). No amount of CS kisses will erase that image of Hook’s bloody sword piercing Emma’s grandfather from my brain especially it was only 10 episodes ago.
4) Hook was gonna burn his memories instead of telling Emma his secret so he was willing to start a marriage with more deception instead of following Nemo’s advice. This is how you fail a redemption arc because no matter how you spin it, Hook DID NOT TELL THE TRUTH until he got caught!
Emma said “no more secrets” TWICE and still Hook does this BS.
5) Hook was gonna abandon Emma without telling her until he crossed paths with Snow who told him a happy ending was possible for him. So basically he lied again when he said “I would never leave you”.
6) Emma admitted she needed to move on from Hook after only one day lol. She didn’t even think there was a possibility Hook was in danger and to go look for him before throwing his things out? So much for true love.
7) Emma’s character assassination: are we sure she still isn’t the Dark One? Emma beating up and choking an abuse victim for “love” - Was that supposed to be badass? I know Emma didn’t know Gideon was abused but the audience knew and Emma the hero/protagonist was supposed to know better. “I’m sorry, but your son cannot be saved. He’s evil” - After everything Emma has seen with Regina, Zelena, Hook, etc how could she even say that? How come Emma couldn’t tell with her “superpower” that Gideon wasn’t even in control of his actions? Emma agreeing to sacrifice her parents in order to be with a lying boyfriend is utterly selfish and not what the real Emma would do. If the writers think Emma’s “devotion” to Hook is romantic then they are doing it wrong! If Emma being “in love” means forgetting who you are at your core then as an SQer I don’t ever want this version of Emma for Regina.
8) CS were “confirmed” true love by pixie dust of all things… seriously? The writers could’ve just invented a new flower but no it had to be freakin pixie flower which WE KNOW was faulty and WRONG in case of OQ. Furthermore, writers added an extra detail that these flowers only grow in the presence of “great evil” ROFL! So I guess CS are bad TL like Zades and non-endgame TL like OQ huh?
9) Their second proposal happens over Emma’s parents’ comatose bodies…. which reminds me of their makeout session at a graveyard, where a child just buried their father 5 seconds ago. Their reunions are always so epic (plz sense my sarcasm)!
10) Not only was the CS wedding rushed and half-assed but it took place in a musical? Sounds like a joke but ok… Emma’s wedding dress was SO NOT her style
(don’t even get me started on the head/veil thingy)
and it was a cheap copy of Grace Kelly’s. This is NOT a good parallel for CS cuz Grace Kelly gave up her career/individuality for a kingdom and a man she didn’t even truly love. Later, she wanted to divorce him but couldn’t cuz she was told she would lose custody of her children. Therefore, this is NOT a “modern fairytale” that anyone should want to emulate for themselves.
11) The musical episode confirmed that
Emma’s heart was filled with true love by her parents so the Underworld True Love test (“Only a heart filled with true love can pass.”) last season wasn’t actually about CS at all lol.
12) Hook meeting pregnant Snow in flashback when he’s about to marry Snow’s child in present time is creepy ewww. Jacob/Renesmee
from Twilight anyone?
13) Hook said it was bad luck to see the bride before the wedding but he did anyway… means their marriage is doomed? On HIMYM, Robin got divorced and Tracy (the “mother”) died when the Barney and Ted saw their respective brides before the wedding so that superstition has to mean something if storytelling rules apply lol.
14) Hook is supposedly a “changed man” because of Emma and yet he’s still going on about “finally skinning the crocodile" when he poisoned Rumple with Dreamshade he’s kept from Neverland. We knew Hook was a liar but now even his wedding vows about letting go of revenge are a lie lol.
15) Emma still couldn’t unfreeze Hook with her kiss before giving her heart to the Black Fairy but we are supposed to accept that they are true love rofl.
16) Emma still looks lifeless and sick. I’m sorry but the “no makeup” look shows me that Emma is not truly happy with Hook. I don’t buy that this is WallsDown!Emma cuz she has already let her walls down for Henry, Graham, Neal, Walsh, Snow, Regina, etc in seasons 1-4 without losing the makeup. In real life, even battered women seem “happy” and are in love with their abusive partners… so don’t tell me to respect Emma’s choice of wanting to marry the dude who invited all the Dark One’s to terrorize Emma and her family, allowed one of them to choke Emma, called her degrading names like “orphan" and “blonde distraction” just cuz he was pissed… and continues to be a douche who lies like he breathes. In s6 finale, even MentalPatient!Emma has the same tired, ghostly pale face so is Emma still under Dark Hook’s curse from last season?
17) NO CS TLK in the finale either! Let it be known that every single one of their kisses has failed to break a curse lol.
Call me a delusional, salty, bitter shipper whatever but the writing for Emma/CS has been atrocious. When canon fails to deliver and tries to sell a mediocre love story as “epic” then all I can do is laugh tbh.