once upon a time season 3 premiere heart of the truest believer 'Once Upon a Time' premiere: Peter Pan wants Henry's 'Heart of the Truest Believer'“Once Upon a Time” is back with death, mermaids, pixie dust and a nefarious Peter Pan in “Heart of the Truest Believer.” What did you think?


Henry’s dysfunctional family (plus Captain Hook, who sort of has designs on being Henry’s stepdad, ifyouknowwhatwemean) has set sail for Neverland in order to rescue Henry from Greg, Tamara and Peter Pan.

As it turns out, Peter Pan has no interest in getting rid of magic and quickly dispatches Greg and Tamara (so he thinks, we’ll get to her in a minute), sending Henry running through the jungle. We must be a little rusty on our TV bait-and-switch moves because we didn’t actually put it together that Henry’s “friend” was actually Pan until right before the show revealed it.

It’s interesting, because while the shadow that flies around and steals other shadows is very creepy, the actual boy iteration of Pan was not was menacing as we were expecting. Perhaps that is the point. Either way, Pan wants Henry’s heart, as it is the titular “Heart of the Truest Believer.”

Meanwhile, Emma, the Charmings, Regina, Rumpel and Hook are battling mermaids and a monster storm on the way to Neverland. The show takes a page out of “Ghostbusters II” when Emma realizes that the storm is being caused because they’re fighting. Instead of covering everyone in positively-charged pink ooze, she jumps into the swirling seas and everyone must come together to save her — and by extension, Henry.

Except for Rumpelstiltskin, who has taken off to Neverland on his own to battle Pan and save his grandson. Rumpel knows what Henry is supposed to be his undoing, so he is determined to do the right thing and also take out as many Lost Boys as he can in the process. Oh, and he kills Tamara by crushing her heart to dust as punishment for what she did to Henry and Neal. That’s our Rumpel.

Fairytale Land

Neal has been taken in by Aurora, Phillip and Mulan, who decide to help him, especially after they find out he loves Emma. Mulan takes Neal to Rumpel’s castle, where they encounter Robin Hood and a magic room. Rumpel’s crystal ball reveals Emma is in Neverland and Neal vows to get there and save her (since he knows how awful it is).

Thoughts & Tidbits

  • We got a little bit of Emma/Snow starting to work through their issues — like how they’re the same age and Emma feels totally abandoned by them. Star Ginnifer Goodwin tells Zap2it that that dynamic will continue to be explored this season.
  • Best lines:

    Emma to the Charmings: “How can you two be so infuriatingly optimistic?”

    Hook to Emma: “Actually, I quite fancy you from time to time, when you’re not yelling at me.”

    Neal to Mulan: “They made a movie about you, it’s actually pretty good.”

  • We were expecting not to see Storybrooke in the premiere, but we hope the next episode shows us what’s going on there. Is Belle in charge?

Overall, we are actually looking forward more to episode two now that we’ve seen the premiere. They spent a lot of time getting the rescuers to Neverland and getting Neal to the point where he is also headed to Neverland. We’re ready to watch the plans put into action, rather than getting to the place where they can be.

What did you think of the “OUAT” season premiere?

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."