Dark Curse

The Dark Curse is a curse featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. The Dark Curse is the main plot focal point for the series as the first curse.

Known IngredientsEdit

  • A lock of hair from those with the darkest of souls.
  • The heart of "the thing (the caster) love[s] most".
  • A drop of true love potion. This was added by Rumpelstiltskin onto the parchment of the Dark Curse, which was created from two strands of hair from both Snow White and Prince Charming. It is unknown whether the drop of true love counts as an ingredient because the curse would still work even if it was not added as demonstrated when Peter Pan attempts to cast it.
  • Incidentally, Emma is the only one who can break the first curse because she is a product of true love. In the second curse, however, Regina is the savior as her true love for Henry breaks the curse in "A Curious Thing".
  • Extra ingredients can be added to the curse. For example, the Wicked Witch of the West drops a forgetting potion into the second curse, which causes everyone to lose their recollection of the last year in the Enchanted Forest. She later crafts an antidote for herself to prevent memory loss.


The First CurseEdit

  • Nearly everyone from the Enchanted Forest and some other realms are transported to Storybrooke. A part of the Enchanted Forest remained untouched by Cora's barrier. 
  • Everyone sent to Storybrooke through the curse loses all memories of their former lives and relationships. The only exceptions to this are Regina (who casted the curse) and Jefferson (because remembering was part of his "punishment").
  • Some magical creatures are turned into humans, including fairy and dwarfs, as well as animals (were they human or not) like Jiminy and Gus.
  • All powerful magic has been taken away, and is now limited, with only some exceptional consequences to performing it or trying to get in touch with it again.
  • The curse does not appear to affect people who arrive to Storybrooke after it's construction (with the exception of Emma, who is directly linked to the curse).
  • Time is frozen and no one ages or changes in either Storybrooke or the Enchanted Forest. Those who came to Storybrooke from the outside are immune to these effects.
  • Outsiders cannot come to Storybrooke, unless they have Enchanted Forest heritage, or they were already in the territory before the Curse was cast (like Kurt and his son Owen who were camping over its location). 
  • Terrible consequences will happen to anyone, under the effects of the curse, who tries to leave Storybrooke. Examples include:
    • Ashley attempts to leave town after snatching back the adoption papers of her unborn child, she ends up having contractions in the process, and cannot drive. ("The Price of Gold")
    • Emma is left with no choice but to take Ava and Nicholas Zimmer to Boston after their father, Michael Tillman, refuses to claim them as his own. The car breaks down on the drive out of town giving Emma another chance to persuade Michael to take the children in. ("True North")
    • Kathryn decides to leave town, but in the process of going out of town, Mr. Gold abducts her as part of a previous deal with Regina. ("What Happened to Frederick")
    • When Emma drives out of town after dropping Henry off, she sees a wolf in her path and crashes the car. However, this might also be from different external forces trying to keep her in town to break the curse. Emma was not under the effects of the curse since it was shown at other times that she, as well as Henry, and August were able to leave Storybrooke while the curse was still in effect. ("Pilot")
  • In addition to not remembering their Enchanted Forest lives, the characters have all been "punished" in their own ways.
    • Snow White/Mary Margaret Blanchard - Is a timid and meek schoolteacher often both in speech and dress. She has a lousy love life.
    • Prince Charming/David Nolan - Knocked into a coma due to the wounds he received before the curse took him, and is under the patient name John Doe. Upon waking up, David is placed in an unhappy marriage with Kathryn.
    • Rumplestiltskin/Mr. Gold - He "owns the town" as a monthly rent collector. Owns a pawnshop and is also a licensed lawyer. Has no power over Regina until he regains his memories (which happens when he hears Emma's name), and while a mass presence in town, his power was limited only to his shop.
    • Jiminy Cricket/Archie Hopper - Reverts to human and once again becomes the voice of reason as the town psychiatrist, but has trouble listening to his own conscience and obeys Regina out of fear.
    • Huntsman/Sheriff Graham - He is the town sheriff, and engages in a physical relationship with the mayor, Regina, and is always under her thumb.
    • Red Riding Hood/Ruby - A young woman that lacks self-confidence but dresses scantily and is very flirty with customers. Waitresses at the diner and constantly has several disagreements with her grandmother.
    • Granny/Granny - She and Ruby constantly knock heads and argue about everything. Runs two town businesses; a diner and bed and breakfast.
    • Belle/Belle - A long term patient at the psychiatric ward of Storybrooke General Hospital. After the curse is broken, Regina gives Belle new fake memories, turning her into Lacey, a partying, cladly-dressed barfly.
    • Victor Frankenstein/Dr. Whale - A man focused on work, but becomes a bit of woman chaser and drinker.[1] Works at the hospital as a doctor.
    • Geppetto/Marco - Married, and is unhappily childless. Did try to have children, but "he was not meant to be".
    • Blue Fairy/Mother Superior - Head nun of all the sisters at the nunnery, and often clashes with Mr. Gold.
    • Magic Mirror/Sidney Glass - A reporter for the town's newspaper, the Daily Mirror, and is secretly in love with Regina. Spies on other people for her as a lackey.
    • Abigail/Kathryn Nolan - Married to David, but has an unhappy marriage rooted with issues.
    • Frederick/Jim - The gym teacher of the town school.
    • King George/Albert Spencer - Is district attorney, and aside from that, does not have much power in town.
    • Mad Hatter/Jefferson - Recalls all memories of his life in the Enchanted Forest, but lives in an extensive mansion. Is an amateur cartographer, and longs to be reunited with his daughter, Grace, who does not remember him.
    • Grace/Paige - Lives next door to her actual father, Jefferson, as the daughter of two unnamed parents.
    • Grumpy/Leroy - An outcast in town because of his drinking habits, and does shifts at the hospital as a janitor.
    • Cinderella/Ashley Boyd - Stays pregnant for twenty-eight years; unable to give birth and abandoned by her boyfriend and true love, Sean.
    • Prince Thomas/Sean Herman - A young man who presumably, under the false event modifiers of the Dark Curse, gets his girlfriend, Ashley, pregnant. With pressure from his father, he abandons Ashley and her unborn child.
    • The King/Mitchell Herman - Does not approve of his son's relationship with Ashley, and even more so because she is pregnant.
    • Hansel and Gretel/Nicholas Zimmer and Ava Zimmer - Two siblings who become orphans after their mother passes away, and resort to stealing for survival.
    • The Woodcutter/Michael Tillman - A mechanic who remains unaware he has children.
    • Nova/Astrid - Is a sister of the nunnery. She remains clumsy and hapless.
    • Sir Maurice/Moe French - Runs a flower delivery business, and is often late on rent for Mr. Gold.
    • Gus/Billy - Becomes human, and works as a mechanic.
    • Maleficent - Transformed into her dragon form and imprisoned beneath the clock tower in a cavern.

The Second CurseEdit

  • The Enchanted Forest inhabitants are transported back to Storybrooke with everything reverted to how it was before the first curse was undone. Magic remains in Storybrooke. ("New York City Serenade", "A Curious Thing")
  • Due to the Wicked Witch of the West dropping a forgetting potion into the second curse, everyone loses their memories of the last year spent in the Enchanted Forest. She herself ingests an antidote to retain her memories. After passing the vial to Rumplestiltskin, Neal temporarily breaks free from his father's body to send the potion to Hook. In writing, he asks him to use it to restore Emma's memories. ("A Curious Thing")
  • Those picked up by the second curse who weren't affected by the first curse have been given new lives in Storybrooke, however, they still retain their old names. ("New York City Serenade")
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