The past came back to haunt Emma (Jennifer Morrison) in this week’s Once Upon A Time — “Breaking Glass” — as she and Elsa (Georgina Haig) continued to try and find the Snow Queen (Elizabeth Mitchell). Emma is still perplexed about how the Snow Queen knows her and why she can’t seem to remember.
Regina (Lana Parrilla) is also searching for the Snow Queen, but for a different reason — she wants to find her so the Snow Queen will un-freeze Marian (Christie Laing).
These two threads dominated the episode with a side of Elsa still searching for her sister Anna (Elizabeth Lail). It is that search that lures Elsa away from Regina and Emma when they decide to work together to find the Snow Queen.
As Emma goes in to talk to Regina about helping them, Elsa is left in the car. She hears Anna’s voice and goes after her. Big mistake as she soon finds herself frozen, her arms in icy chains and being held prisoner by the Snow Queen. The only way Elsa can escape is if she lets go of her fear. You just know there is a reason for the Snow Queen telling her that.
Regina and Emma go in search of Elsa and the Snow Queen thanks to help from The Magic Mirror (Giancarlo Esposito). At the moment, The Mirror is in a silver plated compact. As they follow The Mirror’s lead, it is soon discovered that he’s double crossing Regina and now works for the Snow Queen.
As The Mirror pleads his allegiance to the Snow Queen, after she frees him from the mirror, she tells him she doesn’t need him anymore. All she needs is the dark magic in the mirror. She breaks the mirror and places the last sliver needed in a bigger mirror. She says her goal is almost complete and, with the mirror, she will get her family back.
We also get a flashback to Emma as a young teenager who meets a sort of kindred spirit. Emma thinks the young girl is a runaway like her and they break into a house and enjoy its amenities. They even find a camera and film themselves (the camera plays an important part in the final reveal of the hour). As for the girl young Emma bonds with, turns out she isn’t a runaway without a family — just an adopted girl who doesn’t like the family she would up with. This angers Emma, who only wants a family, and she runs away from the girl.
As for how the video camera comes into play, Emma drags out an old box as Hook (Colin O’Donoghue) and she talk about her possible connection to the Snow Queen. After the video that Emma and the other girl shot, the camera grows fuzzy and shows a young boy and we hear Teenage Emma’s voice. Then another face enters the screen and it’s the Snow Queen. She knew Emma when she was young.
The C-plot was a vapid, silly storyline about Mary Margaret (Ginnifer Goodwin) and David (Josh Dallas) getting a few hours by themselves and leaving baby Neal with Belle. When David says he has to leave because Will Scarlett has escaped she thinks he set her up to have her find Will and make her feel useful. She finds Will digging in the sand looking for his knapsack — she pardons him thinking David set it up. He didn’t set it up and she pardoned an escaped prisoner.
One downer from the episode is not enough Anna. Looking forward to Elsa truly finding Anna and discovering the mystery of why Elsa was in that urn.