'Once Upon a Time' season 3, episode 18, "Bleeding Through" recap

By Amanda Levine,

Sunday’s episode of Once Upon a Time was full of magic, witches and revealed truths. Hidden secrets of characters were surfaced and some rivalries were ended while others are just beginning to get riled up.

In this past episode, “Bleeding Through,” the story focused on the character of Cora, who is the Evil Queen and Zelena’s mother. Although she had previously died in a past episode, by the hands of Snow White, her past and her ghost were present throughout the episode.

The episode starts off with Zelena barging in on Regina at her home in Storybrooke. All Zelena wants to do is intimidate and scare Regina, which is a very hard thing to do since Regina used to be the Queen of evil. This distraction allows Zelena to use her human pawn, Mr. Gold, to go and track down Regina’s heart, which she had previously left in safe keeping with Robin Hood.

Mr. Gold ends up persuading Robin Hood to give up Regina’s heart after threatening his son, much to Robin Hood’s dismay who feels as if he let down Regina. The whole time however, Mr. Gold is being tortured mentally since he really doesn’t want to be Zelena’s pawn, let alone threaten Robin Hood and his son. The only reason he is doing any of this is because he is being controlled by Zelena.

In Regina’s quest to find out what happened between Zelena and their mother Cora, and why Cora gave her up, Regina uses a spell to call upon her mother to come back from the dead to explain herself and her past. The spirit of Cora wants nothing to do with her daughter Regina, but instead possesses Snow White, who then sees the reasons behind Cora’s decisions in the past.

In the past in the Enchanted Forest, Cora was a miller’s daughter working as a barmaid in a local tavern. She believes herself to be in love with a man who claims he is a prince and must leave for his kingdom the next day. He proposes to her with a ring of straw, claiming he will come back for her with an actual gold ring. Out of happiness she agrees to sleep with him that night and winds up getting pregnant and never hearing from him again, since he turns out to be a lying thief.

After this horrible tragedy for Cora, some good luck finds her and she meets Prince Leopold, who is soon to be married to Princess Eva. However, Leopold and Cora form a bond and fall in love and so the two end up becoming engaged much to Eva’s dismay. Cora is also still hiding that fact that she is pregnant.

However, one day Eva overhears Cora talking to the man that had impregnated her and finds out her secret. Eva goes and tells Prince Leopold who catches Cora in her lie and banishes her from the castle and ends their engagement. Prince Leopold and Princess Eva end up getting married, to later on become Snow White’s parents. It is through this betrayal by Princess Eva, as the reason why Cora hated Snow White’s mother and gave up Zelena.

Meanwhile back in Storybrooke, Belle has been doing some research of her own and finds out the reason as to why Zelena is after Regina’s heart. She discovers that with David’s courage, Regina’s heart and with someone’s brains, Zelena can concoct a time travel spell. Everything comes together for the group in Storybrooke now that they know about Cora’s past. It is apparent that Zelena is going to create the time travel spell in order to go back in time and kill Princess Eva, Snow White’s mother. If she succeeds, Snow White, Emma, Henry and possibly even Regina herself will have never been born. There is also the question as well of what Zelena wants Mary Margret’s baby for. In the upcoming episodes it will be interesting to see if Zelena succeeds and what role the baby will play in the story line after it is born.

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