Slight spoilers may be talked about below, so please be sure to watch the latest episode before reading on!

After last week’s rather forced season opener introducing a new status quo for our returning heroes, things sorta felt like the classic Once Upon A Time of old with this past Friday’s Hook centric episode, A Pirate’s Life. It also featured an answer for the big question of “Whatever happened to Emma Swan?” for long time viewers going into Season 7.

The main story of the episode was actually the flashbacks, featuring Regina and Hook entering Another Realm to help Henry track down Cinderella. Along the way, Hook bumps into his Wish Realm version of himself — who was introduced a season or two ago when Emma wished to not be the Savior anymore and was whisked away to an Alternate Enchanted Forest where Regina’s curse never happened. This, “Alt. Hook” as fans call him, was up to his usual drunken ways and trying to sabotage our heroic Hook’s search for Cinderella.

Henry and Hook

Photo Source: ABC

In the real world of Hyperion Heights, Hook and Rumple played detectives and tried to uncover the truth behind Henry’s involvement with Lucy and Jacinda — and to arrest Henry per Victoria’s orders too. Henry and Jacinda, after last week’s episode of Victoria getting custody of Lucy, worked together in order for Jacinda to see Lucy at a ballet recital.

I have to admit, this episode felt like such a return to form for the series after the sudden shift in the previous episode. The acting from the characters, both new and old felt right and it felt like the ship was being steered in the right direction by Hook and co. The sets felt great to see, and Hyperion Heights actually felt a bit more natural this time compared to the first episode of the season. And of course the forest setting well… Will always be the forest setting for the show. 7 seasons in and you sorta get use to it by now. The only strange omission from this episode was the mysterious Alice and what role she plays in the grand scheme of things this season. Maybe next week, we’ll find out?

However, the only character that felt a bit rough around the edge would be Rumples, he came across forced at times. Not sure if that was Robert Caryle’s intention or just bad directing/script for him to work with. Jacinda’s sister on the flip side, was actually charming and full of life for such a small role this week — sadly I have yet to catch her name two episodes in. Don’t worry it’ll probably come to me in the next episode when they uncover her fairy tale origin in a Cinderella centric tale.

All in all this was a great episode that will satisfy any die hard Once Upon A Time fan and leave them happy. So don’t you give up on the second half of series too early now.