Top 5 Episodes of Season 1
The pilot starts with a great opening, showing Emma Swan as very capable of taking care of herself, walking to ‘Howlin’ For You’ by the Black Keys. She is also established as a loner, epitomized with her solitary birthday celebration. The episode also establishes all the characters, both in Storybrooke as well as in the Enchanted Forest. The episode ends with the great shot of Henry watching the clock tower as time starts to move again.
We also see some of the cinematography that we can expect, including the shot of Emma’s eye opening, a recreation of a similar shot from Lost.
2. The Thing You Love Most
This episode fully establishes the rivalry between Emma and Regina, who both think they know what’s best for Henry. This episode also contains the classic scene where Emma gets a chain saw and chops down Regina’s apple tree. We also see the beginning of Operation Cobra.
We see that Gold may know more than he lets on, and how carefully the curse has been planned out by him, though we are left to wonder about his motives.
- The Heart is a Lonely Hunter
This episode has a lot of firsts. It’s the first time a cursed character, Graham, starts to experience magic and remember things from who he used to be. It’s also the first time Emma starts to let someone in, even if only a little. It’s also the first major character death, and the first time Regina kills someone in Storybrooke, not the Enchanted Forrest. With the appearance of the wolf, the wall between magic and a world without magic seems to have weakened, even if just a little. This episode also has left a thread that could pull the relationship Emma and Regina have established apart, as Emma still doesn’t know that Regina killed Graham.
- Hat Trick
This episode was interesting because it showed another side to the curse, where Jefferson suffers by being aware of the curse and who he really is, as opposed to everyone else. It also shows Emma and Mary Margaret team up for the first time for a fight. The episode is also just really entertaining.
- A Land Without Magic
This was the episode where Emma finally believed, and where she broke the curse and woke Henry up with true love’s kiss. It also marked the first time Emma and Regina worked together, even if reluctantly. It also had Emma learning to sword fight, which is very cool.