Once Upon a Time (2011–2018)
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Quite a Common Fairy 

To find Pan's hideout, Hook suggests tracking down Tinker Bell, who has a bitter past with Regina, and Robin Hood and Mulan help Neal get to Neverland.


Alex Zakrzewski


Edward Kitsis (created by), Adam Horowitz (created by) | 1 more credit »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Ginnifer Goodwin ... Mary Margaret Blanchard
Jennifer Morrison ... Emma Swan
Lana Parrilla ... Regina Mills
Josh Dallas ... David Nolan
Emilie de Ravin ... Belle French (credit only)
Colin O'Donoghue ... Captain Killian 'Hook' Jones
Michael Raymond-James ... Neal Cassidy
Jared Gilmore ... Henry Mills (as Jared S. Gilmore)
Robert Carlyle ... Rumplestiltskin
Sarah Bolger ... Princess Aurora
Jamie Chung ... Mulan
Robbie Kay ... Peter Pan
Sean Maguire ... Robin Hood
Rose McIver ... Tinker Bell
Keegan Connor Tracy ... Blue Fairy


As the search for Henry continues, Hook suggests tracking down Tinker Bell in the hope that she will lead them to Peter Pan's camp, while Neal devises a plan in order to get to Emma. Meanwhile, back in fairy tale land, Tinker Bell offers to help improve Regina's life. Written by ab1995

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

13 October 2013 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


When Regina and Tinker Bell see "The Man with the Lion Tattoo" in the pub, Mendelssohn's Wedding March plays within the score in the background. See more »


When Neal is trying to convince Robin Hood to let him use Roland to call Pan's Shadow, Robin Hood's right hand sleeve rides up- but there is no Lion tattoo visible above his wrist. Yet it appears later, when Mulan joins his merry men. See more »


Regina Mills: I was afraid. I didn't... You said I could let go of the anger that was weighing me down. And suddenly it felt like without it, I would just... float away. That anger was all I had. What would I be without it?
Tinker Bell: Happy.
Regina Mills: [shakes her head] Weak.
Tinker Bell: And look what good it did you - that "strength" you gained; 'cause I'm holding your heart in my hand, and I'm not hearing *one* reason not to squeeze it into ash.
Regina Mills: All right, you want a reason? Here you go. You think *I* was afraid? You think *I* did the wrong...
See more »


References The Wizard of Oz (1939) See more »

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User Reviews

Introducing Tinker Bell
6 March 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

When 'Once Upon a Time' first started it was highly addictive and made the most of a truly great and creative premise. Really loved the idea of turning familiar fairy tales on their heads and putting own interpretations on them and the show early on clearly had clearly had a ball. Watched it without fail every time it came on and it was often a highlight of the week. Which was why it was sad when it ran out of ideas and lost its magic in the later seasons.

"Quite a Common Fairy", as far as previous Season 3 episodes go, is not as good as the brilliant Season 3 opener "In the Heart of the Truest Believer". It is though a better episode than the very enjoyable if uneven "Lost Girl". "Quite a Common Fairy" is a very good episode, am on the more positive side of the episode's mixed critical reception, with a lot of interest points and pleasures.

By all means, it is not perfect. The special effects tend to be less than magical and actually often pretty limited, though there are worse 'Once Upon a Time' episodes on this front (Season 2's "Tallahassee" anyone when talking of previous episodes?). Mulan's plan is also a bit too neat in pre-carrying out and concludes too patly.

Actually, there is not a lot to dislike about "Quite a Common Fairy" and as said there are many pleasures to be had and some note-worthy interest points. It's our introduction to Tinker Bell, and already she is a charming and sassy character with a troubled situation that allows one to identify with her and endear to her. Really appreciated too the decision to show a different side to Regina, shown as a not all bad and conflicted person who has made wrong decisions, now that is how to progress one of the show's best characters.

Robin Hood is far better used in "Quite a Common Fairy" than he was in his missed opportunity first appearance "Lacey" and is significantly more interesting, staying true to the charismatic, heroic and swaggering character as usually portrayed but also with a conflicted side to him. Mulan's storyline mostly is very well done, always found Mulan one of the stronger characters introduced in Season 2 and it was nice to see her get more focus after being neglected for a while compared to other characters.

There is far less of a too safe feel than there was in "Lost Girl" and it's more exciting and eventful. The flashbacks are not stale and doesn't give off anywhere near as much a sense of two different episodes. It establishes Tinker Bell's character, for so early on, really well, advances Regina's character and does a nice job too with the Blue Fairy. The rest of the episodes has a lot going on without being over-stuffed, gives all the characters a lot to do and without contradicting or distorting any of them and plot turns feel like they're moving forward. Am continuing to really enjoy very interesting, and not disrespectful considering the premise of the show, interpretation of Peter. This Peter is a darker, more manipulative but also conflicted, with questionable motivations but ones where it's not so hard seeing how he came to be that way, version, not the reasonably likeable and mischievous but flawed and cocky Peter Barrie imagined and that fans are used to.

Once again, the acting is very good to great. Lana Parrilla, Colin O'Donoghue and Robert Carlyle can be counted on to give never less than fine performances, and they don't disappoint. Neither do Jamie Chung and Robbie Kay. Sean Maguire captures Robin Hood's distinctive character traits with aplomb and Rose McIver charms and endear as Tinker Bell. Keegan Connor Tracy does well too.

Furthermore, "Quite a Common Fairy" is a very handsomely mounted episode visually, the settings and costumes are both colourful and atmospheric, not too dark or garish and never cookie-cutter. It is photographed beautifully too. Only the special effects underwhelm in this regard. The music is haunting, ethereal and cleverly used with a memorable main theme. Writing has the right balance of humour, pathos, mystery and intrigue.

To summarise, very good episode. 8/10 Bethany Cox

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