A moment of silence, please, in honor of cute werewolf Quinn, Gus-Gus — can you believe that Storybrooke hottie Billy once looked like this? — and Anita, Red Riding Hood’s bloodthirsty, feather-loving mama wolf. (Age-inappropriate casting alert! Annabeth Gish, who played Anita, is only 11 years older than Meghan Ory, who portrays her onscreen daughter.)
Between those three and all the knights who got their necks snapped in the Wolf Pack’s secret furry lair, tonight’s Once had a bigger body count than usual. No matter what she does, death seems to follow Red like the train of her signature cloak — trauma, trauma on the wall, is her back story the most tragic of them all?
We’ll discuss that later. For now, the citizens of Storybrooke are feeling pretty merry: Grumpy has inadvertently discovered that there are magic diamonds growing deep within the town’s mines. Once ground, those diamonds will become fairy dust. So Charming will soon be able to get Jefferson’s busted old hat working again — and if Once‘s writers answer my prayers, we’ll also see more dwarfs hatching from kooky giant eggs. Yeah, that happened once.
After making their priceless discovery, the miners and a few close pals head to Granny’s for a celebratory pint or four. But not everyone at the restaurant is in a good mood. Little Henry is chugging coffee like the kids in Airplane, worried that his recurring nightmare will strike as soon as he falls asleep. Charming is blindsided by wicked King Charles Widmore (real name: George), who swoops in out of nowhere — seriously, guy, what have you been waiting for all season? — to deliver a retro-Regina-style threatdown.
And then there’s Red, who’s so worried about the coming full moon that she can’t even enjoy a beverage with Billy — the strapping tow truck operator whose Fairy Land self was Cinderella’s roly-poly mouse pal. Hey, remember how Cinderella’s a character on this show? Me neither.
Back home, Red eventually learned how to control her wolf self — but after 28 years of curse-induced stasis, she’s worried that she might maul someone when she transforms that night. Luckily, her ever-handy Granny has used her heretofore unseen metalworking skills to transform a walk-in freezer into a cozy cage for Red. Bet she’ll be thankful for all that fur tonight, right?
The full moon has also risen over the Fairy Land of tonight’s fairyback, which immediately follows the events of “Red-Handed.” (That’s straight from the she-wolf’s mouth.) Upon noticing a tear in her magic cloak, Red urges her pal Snow to spend the night somewhere else, just in case Red transforms; they’ll meet up again the following morning. What Red doesn’t know is that there’s a yellow-eyed stranger listening in on her conversation — a stranger who appears again the next morning and snatches Red’s cloak away the moment her back is turned. There’s some Simba-Nala-esque wrestling. Finally, the new guy reveals that his name is Quinn — and he, like Red, is a werewolf. Oh, except the P.C. term is apparently “Child of the Moon.” And hillbillies prefer to be called “sons of the soil,” but it ain’t gonna happen.
NEXT: Whoa, mama!