Once Upon A Time Season 3 Preview: Mermaids, Robin Hood & Emma’s Love Prospects

“Once Upon A Time” returns tonight on ABC with the journey to Neverland in full swing.

The Charming family — Snow/Mary Margaret, Prince Charming/David, and their grown up daughter, Emma Swan — are aboard the Jolly Roger, sailing to Neverland in the hopes of saving Henry, who was taken their last year by Greg and Tamara. Regina/The Evil Queen is also onboard and gearing up for battle, her magic powers at the ready.

Putting the gang on the ship, and away from Storybrooke, will lead to some very interesting drama in tonight’s very, very big Season 3 premiere.

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“The thing we wanted to do this year — we’ve always wanted to go to Neverland, but we really wanted to kind of focus on the core characters and we thought because Neverland is a place where you don’t grow up, then you have to confront your past,” Edward Kitsis, one of the shows Executive Producers, said at an interview session with TV writers earlier this week. “Our inspiration was the idea that these characters would have to return to who they were before the curse in order to kind of achieve this. And at the same time, we wanted to have them dig deeper into what everything means. Last year, was such like a bullet and so we wanted to have time to kind of reflect on what’s happened and what does it mean. Yeah, Emma looks at Mary Margaret as her mom, but does she really actually think of her as a mom?”

Here’s more from the eye-opening chat with Edward and his fellow executive producer, Adam Horowitz.

On Rumplestiltskin Facing His Own Issues On His Separate Quest To Find Henry

Edward: This is a man who wants to break the cycle of his past. He wants to be a good father, but it’s like that quote — ‘I can resist everything but temptation.’… He’s a difficult man to love, as he said, and so just when you begin to love him, he does something so awful, you go, ‘Awww, Man!’ … Episode 4 is called ‘Nasty Habits,’ and that will be his first backstory.

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On The Potential For Love Between Emma Swan & Captain Hook

Edward: Obviously Hook is a man who likes ladies, and as we saw last year when they climbed the beanstalk, Emma has probably captured his heart a little bit, but in the [same] respect, we see that Neil is fighting like hell to get a second chance with her. Right now, I think Emma is focused on getting Henry. She’s not somebody who likes to let her walls down and her heart’s been broken too many times for her to kind of be worried about dating right now. But we’ll see. She’s got two handsome guys.

On The “Once Upon A Time” Version Of Mermaids

Edward: In the Peter Pan book they were only nice to Peter and they were saucy and we like our mermaids saucy. We just thought, for us, when we were coming up with this, we just loved the idea that that was who they were attacked by and that was kind of symbolic of Neverland — it’s not what you think it is. Most people think of Ariel when they think of mermaids, and what they don’t know is she’s surrounded by really, really hot tempered mermaids.

Adam: We’ll be seeing Ariel [in] Episode 6. It’s called ‘Ariel,’ a slight spoiler title.

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On Problems In The Charming Family

Adam: It’s complicated and hopefully in a good way. They’re a very unusual family [in] that there’s this odd age thing going on between them — they’re the same age, and also, they’ve been separated for many, many years and now they’re thrown together on a mission and really, for the first time, in an enclosed kind of space, they’re able to start to deal with and sort out some of these issues that they haven’t really had a chance to address yet.

On Robin Hood (Who Is Now Being Played By British Actor & Former Pop Star Sean Maguire)

Edward: We’re very excited to have Sean. He has a great Robin Hood; he has a great take on it and Robin Hood’s story is just kind of beginning. … We’re airing in two, 11 episode pods and I think you’re gonna get a little more into him in the beginning of this [season] and you’re definitely going to get a lot of him in the second half. I think he’s a character [we’re] really excited about because he’s a thief, but he’s a thief with honor and [Sean’s Robin] has a sense of honor and a code to him, but there’s a sense of playfulness, which we think Robin Hood needs.

Adam: And if need be, he can sing.

“Once Upon A Time” airs Sundays at 8/7c on ABC.

-- Jolie Lash

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