We got a look into Cora's (Barbara Hershey) past while the drama in the present led to a death on Once Upon a Time Season 2, Episode 16: "The Miller's Daughter." Did it make for a good episode? Read on for Wetpaint Entertainment's review of the episode, and then rate it yourself.

Read spoilers at your own risk! For more on Wetpaint Entertainment's philosophy on spoilers, click here.

We were big fans of this episode, which focused all of its energy on the core cast. Despite a number of dramatic action scenes, the episode was really all about grounded emotions, which is generally when OUAT is at its strongest.

Snow's (Ginnifer Goodwin) better nature battled with her thirst for revenge and desire to protect her family — and lost, at least for a little while. She decided to use the magical candle that was introduced in Episode 15 to exchange Cora's (Barbara Hershey) life for Rumplestiltskin's (Robert Carlyle), tricking Regina (Lana Parrilla) into putting Cora's cursed heart back into her body, dramatically killing her at the end of the episode. Now Snow is burdened with guilt, and Regina is wracked with anger and grief.

Meanwhile, we were treated to some continued Rumple/Nealfire (Michael Raymond-James)/Emma (Jennifer Goodwin) family drama, as Emma and Nealfire fought to keep Rumple alive. Emma tapped into her magic with Rumple's help, while Nealfire got to see his dad's softer side when Rumple, on the verge of death, said a heartbreaking goodbye to Belle (Emilie de Ravin).
 
And in the flashbacks, which were one of our favorite parts of the episode, we got the full sordid story of Cora's past, which involved humiliation at Eva's hand, a true love affair with Rumplestiltskin, and ultimately choosing power over love at the cost of ripping her own heart out.

Even though it wasn't quite as outstanding as Episode 14: "Manhattan," we thought this was one of the best episodes of the season. All of the actors were at the top of their game, and we can't wait to see where the show goes from here.

 

Rate it yourself below!

Catch the next episode of Once Upon a Time on Sunday, March 17, 2013 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

Rebecca Martin is an editor at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter @BeccaDMartin.