There’s a new curse in town. Once Upon a Time Season 7 kicked off its “requel”—reboot/sequel—season with a grownup Henry (Andrew J. West) in Seattle, unaware of exactly how epic his life has been. Also living in oblivion? Rogers, aka Hook (Colin O’Donoghue), Weaver, aka Gold (Robert Carlyle), and Roni, aka Regina (Lana Parrilla), who are working as newly-minted detective partners and a bar owner, respectively.
Season 7 will bring a new sort of challenge to the former inhabitants of Storybrooke. “If you’re going to rebuild the Death Star, make sure that the one hole that could make it explode is covered,” executive producer Edward Kitsis said during the show’s New York Comic Con panel. “We have covered the hole on the Death Star [in this new curse].”
Added executive producer Adam Horowitz, “It was a lot of fun to find ways to reenergize the storytelling [in Season 7, but continue to] keep the spirit.”
Also promised? The characters having real life problems, like not being able to pay their rent.
By the end of the season premiere, Roni opted not to sell her bar to Season 7’s Big Bad Victoria Belfrey (Gabrielle Anwar)—who is Cinderella’s evil stepmother Lady Tremaine in the other realm—and that push-pull will continue. “There’s no one better to stand up to a bully than Roni,” Kitsis noted.
After playing multiple versions of Regina/Evil Queen over the years, Parrilla said the experience of playing Roni was “fantastic.” “Roni is a girl you want to hang out with,” she said. “She’s the girl you want to do shots with at the bar. She’s rough around the edges. She’s definitely spicy. She hasn’t lost her sass…she’s been there, she’s done it, she’s seen it all. She does have this wisdom you’ll see throughout the course of the season…it’s Regina 2.0.”
And though the show lost its share of original actors for this upcoming season, a handful of familiar faces will pop up. Kitsis teased: “Episode 4 is going to tell what happened post-happy ending for Rumple and Belle. And Episode 2 shows what happened for Emma post-Season 6.”
Once Upon a Time, Fridays, 8/7c, ABC