The episode started with a loud explosion. A hole appears in the ground and out pops a young Alice. She runs back to her home excited to tell her father about the adventures she has had. When she arrives, her father informs her that she had been gone for a long time and everyone thought she was dead. He decides to call a doctor in to help Alice because he believes that these adventures were all in her head. We end this flashback with Alice promising herself that she will find proof that it was all real. None of this was in the 19 minute presentation.
William unlocks the door and makes himself a coffee. Suddenly the ground starts to shake as a White Rabbit pops out of a portal. He tells William that they need to go rescue Alice as she is in danger. William is hesitant to go at first but after some convincing agrees to help.
In the flashbacks, Alice is being chased by the Red Queen's guards. She eats some mushroom and shrinks. A genie bottle happens to be lying on the ground so Alice crawls inside to hide. This bottle belongs to Cyrus - A genie from Agrabah. She tells Alice that she can stay hiding in there for as long as she likes. The two get talking. Alice reveals that the reason she has returned to Wonderland was to get proof for her father that it is real. Out of her bag, she pulls a talking march hare. Cyrus tells her that if her father really loved her, he wouldn't need proof.
Back in the asylum, the doctor tells Alice that there is a new procedure to help her forget Wonderland and ease her pain. She agrees to have it done and signs a contract.
The next morning, the doctor is in a lab preparing everything. The cell of Alice's door opens. However it is not guards coming to get her. It is William. He tells her that he has taken care of the guards but they need to move quick. Alice refuses to leave because she believes that he isn't real. The guards appear and try to drag William. He
They into some alley and become trapped. Alice makes the rabbit open up a portal on the wall. The guards appear closer. William is hesitant to return to Wonderland because he didn't leave on good terms. Alice tells him that the only way that he can escape the guards is to jump into the portal - so they do. (This all took place down in the asylums basement in the presentation).
The portal opens right above the mellow marsh (a pond full of - well - mellow marsh).
William plans to leave Alice because he wishes to exit Wonderland now. He doesn't see the point in sticking around when Cyrus probably isn't even alive. Alice convinces him to stay and take her to the Hatters house. If he does this, she will give him one of her three wishes that she has saved. Wishes are little red diamonds. William asks why she doesn't just wish Cyrus back. Alice tells him that it is too dangerous.
Jafar arrives at the Red Queen's castle. He requests to know where Alice is. The Red Queen tells him that she has arrived back in Wonderland and is looking for her genie. Jafar tells the queen that they can not get what they want until they have Cyrus's bottle and Alice has made all of her wishes. Jafar believes that The Red Queen has fulfilled her job and starts to strangle her with his powers. The Queen then tells her that only she knows the entire land and is the only one that knows where to locate Alice. She promises to get the wishes and tells Jafar to go away. He gets back on his magic carpet and flys back to his castle.
Alice and William find themselves walking around the Tulgey woods. There is a wanted poster with Williams face on it on a tree. Alice asks him what he did when she left Wonderland. He refuses to answer. Alice then decides to climb a tree to look for the Hatters house. She takes off her shoes which have the wishes hidden in their soles and leaves them at the bottom with the tree with William. William takes off with them.
The two arrive at the hatters house. The lights are on. Alice runs in only to find the place empty. The rabbit reappears. William is now convinced that Cyrus is dead and wishes to return to Storybrooke. Just as Alice starts to give up hope, she finds a necklace that belonged to Cyrus on the lawn outside. She is convinced that if it survived the boiling sea, so did he. William still wants to go home, but decides to stay when Alice asks if he will come with her to find him.
I enjoyed the 19 minute pilot presentation when I first say it. However upon watching it back in the full episode, it felt slow. Although that could have been because I had already seen it and I was waiting for some new footage. Once Alice returned to Wonderland, I felt as if things really picked up.
Now for my thoughts.
There was some really bad CGI, although that was to be expected on a show that relpies on CGI for almost everything. Hopefully things will improve as the series moves along. I am happy that the White Rabbit looked real.
I don't really care for the Red Queen that much as a villain. Jafar makes her seem like a pussy cat (although I guess after seeing Cheisure, I can't say that anymore can I?). Naveen Andrews is perfect. I believe him as the true villain. He scared me quite a bit!
Overall, I am addicted to Once Upon a Time and was expecting a lot from this show. The verdict? It met my expectations. I can't wait to see what comes next! I'll definitely be tuning in every week (and I hope that everyone else does too.... the show needs the ratings at the moment!).