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This article focuses on the humanoid species. For the sea creature species, see Giant Squids.
We giants foster life. [Humans] destroy it. That is why they must never know that we still exist, or that we still grow the beans.
Arlo src

Giants are a humanoid creature species featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. They are native to the Enchanted Forest, and first appear in the sixth episode of the second season.

The most prominent giant, Anton, is based on the giant from Jack and the Beanstalk.

Biology

Giants are creatures of human appearance, but prodigious size and strength. Only male giants have appeared on the show, and it is unknown whether there are any female giants. According to Hook, giants can identify the smell of blood. ("Tallahassee", "Tiny")

Culture

Giants foster life and value peace and harmony. According to Arlo, they do not abide by the same laws as humans. However, despite living in peace, they will fight to protect what belongs to them.

Giants have a long tradition of growing Magic Beans, and view it as "the labor that makes them who they are". They used to trade beans with humans, but stopped doing so after seeing how some humans used the beans to conquer and pillage. This made the giants highly suspicious of humans, and they began to view them as evil and destroyers of life. They cut off all contact with humans, and kept their existence a secret, so that no humans could ever get their hands on a magic bean again. ("Tiny")

History

Before First Curse

Giants inhabit the Enchanted Forest on top of a beanstalk. Their kind used to grow magic beans, and trade them with humans. However, because humans became greedy and used the beans to travel to and conquer other worlds, the giants stopped trading with them. Secretly, giants started growing and harvesting beans again without the knowledge of humans. After another successful bean harvest, the head of the giants, Arlo, holds a celebratory meal with his brothers. The last brother, as well as the smallest giant, Anton, arrives late. While Anton stresses the importance of humans not finding out about their beans, Anton doesn't understand his brother's reasoning. As they all rise for a toast, Abraham notices Anton has taken a liking to a human instrument and crushes it. Upset, Anton flees down the beanstalk to the human world, where he is befriended by James and Jack, who have ulterior motives of using him to infiltrate the giants' home. The pair gain Anton's sympathy about the kingdom's debts, and he returns to the beanstalk to gather treasures for them, not knowing they followed him up. In search of magic beans, James and Jack begin attacking the giants with poisoned swords. Arlo then orders Anton to destroy all the beans, and while his brother is gone, he is stabbed by Jack. In turn, Arlo stabs the human with her own sword, condemning her to the same death as him. With his last breaths, he gives Anton the last beanstalk cutting of a magic bean, in the hopes it can be regrown one day. Jack, left to die by James, becomes an legendary figure in the human world who supposedly killed all the evil giants. ("Tiny")

Forever changed by the massacre of his family, Anton grows to hate humans. He lives alone on the beanstalk, amassing many treasures such as the compass, and begins wears the cutting Arlo gave him as a necklace. ("Tallahassee")

After First Curse

Stuck in the Enchanted Forest, Emma and Mary Margaret form a tentative alliance with Hook, who claims there's a compass on a giant's beanstalk they need for returning home. After reaching the top of the beanstalk, they goad Anton out and put him to sleep with dust, before venturing in to the giant's den. As soon as they spot the compass on top of a pile, however, Anton storms in to attack them for knocking him unconscious earlier. While Hook is buried under rubble, Anton grabs Emma and begins squeezing her to death, but she bites his hand to make him let go of her. She then cuts rope, triggering a trap to imprison Anton, and attempts to ask for the compass. Anton believes she will kill him either way, but after some reassurance from Emma that she won't, he gives her the compass. Additionally, as thanks for not killing him, he punches a hole in the wall for her to escape through. Distrustful of Hook's motives, Emma asks for another favor from Anton, requesting that the pirate be kept as prisoner. ("Tallahassee")

In an unknown fashion, Hook breaks free and steals Anton's bean from the beanstalk cutting. Upon climbing to the bottom of the beanstalk, his ally Cora asks for the compass, but he admits Emma got it to first. Later, Cora shrinks Anton and hides him aboard Hook's ship. Besting their enemies, Emma and Mary Margaret manage to return home through a portal at Lake Nostos. As a back-up plan, Hook places Anton's beanstalk cutting in the lake, restoring the bean to its ripe state, which activates another portal to Storybrooke. ("Queen of Hearts")

After Hook and Cora have traveled to Storybrooke, Anton wakes up on the ship, only to see David, who he mistakes for James. To keep the townspeople distracted, Regina gives Anton a magic mushroom to return to his normal size and get his revenge. As Anton terrorizes Storybrooke, David tries clearing up the misunderstanding about James. Only when Emma is mentioned, Anton momentarily calms down, asking to speak with her. Upon learning she is not in town at the moment, he resumes his rampage. Finally, David offers his life in return for the townspeople's safety. The giant agrees and moves to stomp David, who is pushed out of the way by Mary Margaret. Instead, Anton's foot causes a hole in the ground, and after the mushroom's effect wears off, he falls in and clings onto a broken pipe to keep from dropping any deeper. Rescued by David and the townspeople, Anton learns to trust humans again and apologizes for trying to hurt them. At the diner, he reveals the beanstalk cutting, which can grow magic beans. The dwarves, accepting Anton as one of them, gift him a pickax and begin helping him plant the beanstalk cutting. ("Tiny")

Once the beans are planted and have grown into several rows, Mother Superior casts an invisibility veil to obscure it from outsiders. David and Mary Margaret surprise Emma by taking her to see the magic beans, where Anton greets her with a hug. As he chats with her, Leroy comes over to pull him back to work. Later in the day, David and Leroy head to the diner, picking up chili soup for themselves, Anton and the other dwarves tending to the bean fields. Once work is over for the day, David drives Anton and the dwarves to drop them off at Granny's for dinner. As he and his friends walk towards the diner, Anton insists he has no money to cover their meals, but Leroy asserts that the new guy always pays. ("Lacey")

Trivia

Production Notes

Appearances

Note: "Archive" denotes archive footage.

References


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