1. Season 2, Episode 14: "Manhattan."To us, "Manhattan" takes the cake for best episode of the year, because the Nealfire/Emma/Rumple scenes were overflowing with the kind of emotional honesty and complexity we feel like much of this season lacked. Plus, Cora, Regina, and Hook's search for the Dark One dagger made for an amusing side plot, and the backstory actually worked to flesh out Rumple's character.
2. Season 2, Episode 16: "The Miller's Daughter."This episode is a very close second to "Manhattan" for us. The backstory was perhaps our favorite of the season, and anything that features a lot of Cora is good by us. In fact, we may have made this episode number one if we didn't hate that the awesome, emotional climax led to the stupid "Snow has a black heart" plot.
3. Season 2, Episode 5: “The Doctor.”We love Whale. We love Jefferson. We love Regina and Rumple flashbacks, and we love it when Regina's story is convincingly touching. This episode had all of those elements, and although the follow-up on Whale being Frankenstein leaves a lot to be desired, the reveal was still quite fun at the time.
4. Season 2, Episode 6: “Tallahassee.”Emma was underused for a lot of this season, but her star turn in both the primary plot and the flashback of "Tallahassee" reminded us just why we love her. Plus, while Nealfire's choice to ditch her at the end of the episode was terrible, we sure did enjoy their chemistry — not to mention her sparks with Hook in the present!
5. Season 2, Episode 1: “Broken.”We adored the season premiere. It had twists, turns, shocks, and so much promise. Not everything ended up playing out the way we would have liked, but it was a strong start to the season.
Do you agree with our list? What were some of your favorite episodes of the season?
Rebecca Martin is an editor at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter@BeccaDMartin.