Once Upon a Time fans have seen the sleeping curse used in many forms. The question is: Does the plot device need to end. Let’s look at a few instances and then you decide.
Original Use and Season One: The sleeping curse began the story of Once Upon a Time. When Prince Charming awakened Snow, the story started on its journey and has lasted six years. Not bad for a curse to be used for this means and it kept with the original story.
Season One: Henry! Henry wasn’t supposed to be under the sleeping curse. Regina had that reserved for Emma but Henry knew about the apple pie, ate it and fell asleep. His biological mom (Emma’s) kiss, awakened him as did her belief in his story.
Season Two: How many times did Once Upon a Time use the sleeping curse during season two. Let’s count the ways (and I may miss some).
a. Aurora — again okay — Sleeping Beauty was under the curse until she was awakened by true love’s kiss.
b. Henry — went back into the “sleeping curse” sleep to try and get a message to his mom and Snow. Remember the introduction of the room of fire where he and Aurora talked?
c. David/Charming — When Henry got burned from the curse, Charming took the curse himself and went into the room. Good news! He reached Snow and got the message through. Bad news! No way he could let the others know the message made it and what Snow and Emma were facing.
Season Three: If I remember correctly, we got a hint of a curse here but it was the forgetfulness curse. Zelena threw that on people when they returned from the Enchanted Forest.
Season Four: No recollection of the sleeping curse being used.
Season Five: Again, the forgetfulness curse when they return from Camelot. This time, Emma put it on them.
Belle put herself into the sleeping curse with only her father’s kiss supposed to awaken her. Rumple tried, but to no avail.
Season Six: Okay — we have had it used twice so far. The first time was Morpheus/Rumple Junior and the awakening of Belle. The second time is the shared heart that means that we revisit a form of Ladyhawke on Once Upon a Time. While I’m not upset because I loved that movie, it’s a little funny that if Snow is awake, David sleeps. How do they know which is needed. The good news appears to be that both are awake for Emma’s battle (which I think may happen before the mini-break). So, it must not last too long.
Once Upon a Time has found a good plot device to use when they need to develop a character’s strength. Both Snow and Aurora came out stronger. Belle now has a backbone and Henry found out he has the heart of the true believer. But, as we all know, Snow and Charming are the center of the story. How does the sleeping curse impact the Land without Endings. Only time and this season of Once Upon a Time will tell.