(Spoiler warning)

Once upon a time there was a TV show that brought us back to our childhood. Returning as adults, the show reminds us of many of the characters we first met as children reading fairy tales or watching Disney movies. We are re-introduced to Snow White, Prince Charming, Rumplestiltskin, Jiminy Cricket, the Blue Fairy, and, of course, the Evil Queen.

While season one showed us how all these characters had found themselves in a small town in the modern world not knowing who they really are, season two brings us new problems. Emma, the daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming, has broken the curse of the Evil Queen, and now all the characters of Storybrooke know who they are, but cannot get back to their Enchanted Kingdom. Making it more difficult, both Emma and Snow White have been flung back to the Enchanted Kingdom and are now separated from their family, Prince Charming and Henry, Emma’s son.

In the first three episodes of season two, we’ve met a couple new characters:

“The Mystery Man”

Played by Michael Raymond-James. Lives in Little Italy on Grand Street in New York City, across the street from Piemonte Ravioli company. Introduced at the beginning of episode 1 of season 2, this many has been the heart of much speculation. Is he Baefire, Rumplestiltskin’s son? Is he Henry’s father? Is he the white rabbit of Alice’s Adventure? No one knows. More, it’s unlikely that we’ll find out until much later in the season.

Some trivia regarding our one siting of this Mystery Man includes:
  • He is aware of the curse that held Storybrooke.
  • He seems to have a collection of old, rather kichy items in his very small apartment.
These old radios, wooden shoes, microphones from past eras, LP records, and old signs.


Played by Jamie Chung, Mulan is based on the character from a Chinese legend. Hua Mulan is a young woman who dressed as a man to go join the army and go to war in place of her father. Fighting in the army for many years, she returns to her home only after the war. It is only at the end of this time that her army comrades and the Emperor finds out she is a woman.

Mulan has battled alongside of Prince Phillip to find his beloved, Sleeping Beauty (Princess Aurora). When Princess Aurora is found, Prince Phillip is killed when a Wraith is released in the Enchanted Kingdom.

Mulan first took Emma and Snow White as captives when they were found near the spot where Prince Phillip died. Perhaps partially in love with the Prince herself, she sees herself as the main protector of his love, Aurora.

Now she is working with Emma and Snow White to return them to Storybrooke.

Princess Aurora (Sleeping Beauty)

Played by Sarah Bolger, the fairy tale favourite, Sleeping Beauty, comes to life in the character of Princess Aurora. We meet her in episode 1 of the second season when her true love, Prince Phillip, and his comrade, Mulan, arrive to find her in an enchanted sleep. Waking her with true love’s kiss, Aurora learns she has been asleep for over a year and that the Enchanted Kingdom is no longer what it was.

Aurora is a strong, brave woman, but seems trapped in the helpless female role by her garments, Initially, she, like Mulan, wished to torment Emma and Snow White because she suspected them of bringing the Wraith that killed her beloved. Now she works with Mulan, Emma, and Snow White to return Emma and Snow to Storybrooke.


Played by Colin O'Donoghue, the legendary pirate, Hook, of Peter Pan fame, makes his full debut into the series in episode 4: “The Crocodile”. Rumplestiltskin must race to save his wife from a murderous clan of pirates. Captain Hook is revealed He is more powerful than Rumplestiltskin. It is hinted that he’s more evil than Rumple too. However, we know that at some point Hook works with Emma to get something from the Giant (of Jack and the Beanstalk fame) so Hook does appear to be someone that is at least workable. Perhaps, the pirates code comes into play.

Hook's appearance has raised speculation that we'll also meet Peter Pan and even Tinkerbell. Speculation suggests that our Mystery Man (above) is actually Peter.

The Giant

Played by Jorge Garcia. In an upcoming episode, we find Emma and Hook searching for something in the Giant’s lair. The Giant will be far from mellow. "He's a dangerous, angry guy," says Garcia, whose favorite part of the role was dressing up in the Giant's rags. It was "the coolest, most extravagant costume I've ever worn," he says. "There's definitely an Eastern influence to it, with a corset-style belt and a lot of bangle things that jingled when I walked." Dude!
(source: TVGuide)

There's no word if the Giant will have a recurring role in the series, but fans of Garcia will hope he does.

Dr. Whale

Played by David Anders. While Dr. Whale was seen in season one (first in Episode 3), we learned very little of him. In season two, we get to know a lot more about him, such as his identity in the Enchanted Kingdom. There's been a lot of speculation and guessing about what his Enchanted Kingdom character is. These include Dr. Jeckle/Mr. Hyde, Dr. Frankenstein, Red Riding hood's Big Bad Wolf, or Robin Hood. Hints have been dropped during season one and again in the premiere of season two. He has an "over-inflated ego" and a "god complex" according to other characters.

Prince Charming wasn't sure who his Enchanted Kingdom character is either. In the premiere episode of season two, the stood face to face. Whale told Charming that "you're not my prince!" so we are clued in that he is not a member of Charming's kingdom. Perhaps he is a member of Prince Phillips or King Midas' kingdoms?

More characters will emerge to thrill us this season and it's clear that ABC's Once Upon A Time will continue to thrill us all as much as the fairy tales and children's stories the characters emerge from thrilled us.