- Alternate Character Interpretation:
- Aurora's shock at Mulan being a woman - is she just sexist or is she suddenly panicking at what her husband might have been doing travelling with another woman?
- The nature of Philip and Mulan's relationship. It's framed ambiguously, with Aurora assuming that Mulan is in love with him too, and Philip's goodbye "I love you" is presented in a way that we're not sure who he's saying it to. Later episodes reveal that it's Aurora who Mulan is in love with * - so it's unclear if Mulan always loved Aurora or at first loved Philip and then developed feelings for her too. Whether Philip reciprocated is a point that never gets revisited.
- Anvilicious: When Mulan reveals her identity, Aurora does a Double Take and says "you're a girl?" as if the idea of a female warrior is so alien to her. This would become a recurring problem for Mulan on the show.
- Evil Is Cool: The wraith is a pretty cool monster. Especially since the protagonists don't defeat it, making it one of the few monsters to survive an encounter with the Charmings.
- Fanfic Fuel:
- How Aurora ended up under the Sleeping Curse, as certain lines imply she did it willingly as a Heroic Sacrifice. Season 4 contradicts this, showing Maleficent took her by surprise. Some fans like to call Fanon Discontinuity on this, in favour of a more interesting story.
- Aurora's mother being hinted as the original Sleeping Beauty (which gets outright confirmed in Season 4) provides ripe material for fanfics.
- Franchise Original Sin:
- Belle walks out on Rumple when she discovers that he summoned the wraith...and returns to him at the end of the episode. This would be a frequent occurrence later on the show - with the relationship paralleling Stockholm Syndrome for some. Here however Belle returning to Rumple is more understandable since it's the first time, and it's under the provision that he doesn't use his magic for revenge again.
- Regina goes unpunished for her actions. However - unlike being Easily Forgiven for her worst deeds later in the series - here the Charmings make it clear that she's only being spared because Henry wants it.
- Genius Bonus: Mulan gets an Adaptation Personality Change compared to the Disney movie to become a Proud Warrior Race Girl. This is in fact closer to how she is portrayed in the Chinese mythology - a highly intelligent and skilled swordswoman who already wanted to become a warrior. This becomes even bigger in Season 3 when Neal tells her "they made a movie about you".
- Hilarious in Hindsight: Dr Whale leading the angry mob on Regina's house, since a few episodes later he's revealed to be Dr Frankenstein.
- Unexpected Character: As the show had not really started introducing Disney characters yet - drawing mainly from fairy tales that Disney happened to have adapted - Mulan showing up was quite unexpected.
YMMV / Once Upon A Time S 2 E 1 Broken