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This article focuses on Operation Henry, also known as Operation Cobra Rescue.
For the operations with similar names, see Operation Cobra or Operation Cobra Part Two.

Now, let's go save Henry.
Regina Mills src

Operation Henry,[1] also known as Operation Cobra Rescue,[2] is a mission featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. It makes its début in the twenty-second episode of the second season.


After First Curse

Operation Henry unofficially begins after Tamara and Greg kidnap Henry from Storybrooke and take him to their Home Office in another realm. Both Regina and Emma are devastated at Henry's disappearance, however, with a tracking device, Henry is revealed to be in Neverland. In pursuit of saving him, Emma and her allies board Hook's ship, where a magic bean is activated at sea, allowing them to take a portal to Neverland. ("And Straight On 'Til Morning")

On the ship ride to Neverland's island, Mr. Gold unceremoniously decides he will be rescuing Henry alone because he doesn't believe Emma has what it takes for the mission. After he teleports away, the ship is attacked by a school of mermaids. The mermaids are eventually scared off, and Emma and Mary Margaret catch one on a fishing line. This sea creature sounds a conch shell that summons a storm, which leads the group to argue about what to do next. Regina turns the mermaid into a statue, hoping to stop the storm, but this accelerates it instead. As fights break out between Mary Margaret and Regina as well as David and Hook, Emma realizes the storm is caused by everyone's animosity towards each other. When her attempts to get their attention fail, she jumps overboard, just as a rope pulley hits her and knocks her out. With the foursome's combined efforts, they save Emma, causing the storm to recede. They reach the shoreline of Neverland, where Emma persuades everyone to cooperate as a team for the sake of rescuing Henry. Meanwhile, Henry escapes capture from the Lost Boys and finds an unlikely ally in a runaway Lost Boy. After accidentally proving himself to have the heart of the truest believer, Henry learns the Lost Boy is in fact Peter Pan, who then has his entourage seize him. In the Enchanted Forest, Neal discovers from a crystal ball that Emma and Henry are trapped in Neverland. ("The Heart of the Truest Believer")

During a night of rest after an exhausting search for Henry, Emma meets Peter Pan and is given a map to find her son. The catch is the map's contents can only be revealed once Emma stops denying who she truly is. When Emma takes too long with this task, an impatient Regina casts a locator spell on the map to find Henry, but this takes the group into a trap, where they fight the Lost Boys. In the aftermath, Emma talks to Mary Margaret about facing one of the Lost Boys, who reminded her of herself when she was younger. She admits to being what she has always been, an orphan, which finally unveils the map's contents. Away from prying eyes, David regards a spreading wound that he received from one of the Lost Boys' arrows earlier in battle. While Mr. Gold is preparing to go to Henry, he removes his own shadow and orders it to hide the dagger in an unknown location. He meets a manifestation of Belle, whom he believes is an illusion conjured by his own mind. Belle takes him to a cliff edge to sort out his unresolved past, which include his fears of becoming as cowardly and selfish as his own father was. He speaks of a deal Pan offered him if he doesn't interfere with Henry, and while it's tempting to accept as this will keep the seer's prophecy from coming true, he doesn't wish to leave Henry at Pan's mercy. To keep the past from repeating itself in his own life, Mr. Gold lets go of the past by disposing a doll his father once gave him. However, the doll later magically returns to him, no matter how many times he tries to get rid of it. ("Lost Girl")

With the map unveiled, the heroes attempt to use it to locate Pan's camp, only for the camp to be magically moved when they get close to it. They seek out someone Pan trusts, an ex-fairy named Tinker Bell, so she can help them get into the camp and rescue Henry. When Regina begins to lag behind out of exhaustion, she implies to Emma that there is bad blood between her and Tinker Bell. She also mentions Henry, and how she's been referring to the mission as Operation Henry in her head. Later, Tinker Bell kidnaps Regina, whom she blames for causing her to lose her fairy wings. Regina gives Tinker Bell the opportunity to kill her, but ultimately, she convinces her to turn away from darkness. After the heroes reunite with Regina, they gain Tinker Bell's help by promising her passage to Storybrooke. In the Enchanted Forest, Neal lures the Shadow to him and hitches a ride on the creature back to Neverland, where he hopes to find Emma and Henry, but instead, he is captured by Pan's Lost Boy Felix. ("Quite a Common Fairy")

Before Mr. Gold can take down Pan, he runs into Neal, who has just escaped from Felix. Rather than let his father sacrifice himself for Henry, Neal kills a giant squid and extracts its ink to temporarily paralyze Pan. The plan works, but before Neal and Mr. Gold leave with a sleeping Henry, Pan reveals the seer's prophecy to Neal. After hearing the whole story from Mr. Gold, Neal is unable to trust his father and paralyzes him with squid ink, while he takes Henry to find Emma. Pan intercepts Neal and imprisons him before retrieving Henry. Henry later awakes, having heard Neal call for him earlier, but Pan manipulates him into believing his family is not coming for him, and that his place is with the Lost Boys now. On another part of the island, the heroes plan to sneak into Pan's camp, but Tinker Bell opts out of the mission after learning they don't have a way off Neverland. Hook brings the remaining party to an old Lost Boy cave for clues on how Baelfire once left the island. They discover Neal's star map, but with him presumed dead, there's no way to read the map route and leave the island. ("Nasty Habits")

Henry's initiation into becoming a Lost Boy grows stronger after he bests Devin in a duel that leaves his opponent with a bloody injury. At the Lost Boy cave, Emma deducts that they have to ensure Henry knows that they're coming to rescue him before Pan can turn him against them. Mary Margaret leads the group into crafting a net to catch a Lost Boy so they can deliver a message to Henry. As David privately accosts Hook for his non-platonic interest in Emma, he collapses from his Dreamshade wound. Hook misleads him into thinking they can get off the island with a sextant from Dead Man's Peak, however, this is a ploy to get David to the Dreamshade cure. While both men are away on this mission, the women capture Devin, whose heart Regina rips out in order to compel him into giving Henry a compact mirror message from his family. Upon seeing his family through the mirror, Henry believes it is a trick, until Emma professes that this mission is Operation Cobra Rescue and that they are coming to save him. David later discovers Hook's true intentions for bringing him to the peak, and drinks the cure so he use his renewed strength to help save Henry, even with the cost being he can never leave Neverland again. Hook and Emma share an unexpected kiss, which leaves the pirate in dilemma after learning from Pan that Neal is alive. ("Good Form")

Hook reveals Neal's fate to Emma's parents, and the three are later forced to come clean about the secret. Regina, believing this is one of Pan's tricks, leaves them and joins forces with Mr. Gold. To obtain a item needed to defeat Pan, Regina calls upon a mermaid she once wronged, Ariel, for help. Emma, her parents, and Hook head into Echo Caves to fetch Neal, but for them to reach him, each person must reveal their deepest secret. Hook admits he has romantic feelings for Emma, Mary Margaret confesses she wants another child, and David tells his wife about his price for the Dreamshade cure. With these truths unearthed, a bridge forms to Neal, which Emma crosses. To get Neal out of his cage, she reveals her dismay over finding out he was alive, and that she still loves him and wanted to move on rather than deal with the heartbreak of their shared past. ("Ariel")

Mr. Gold sends Ariel to Storybrooke with the task of finding Belle and giving her an enchanted seashell that will locate the needed item. When Ariel leaves Neverland, Pan senses her departure and notifies his minions in Storybrooke. Ariel later returns with the procured item, Pandora's Box, with a plea for Mr. Gold and Regina to rescue one of Pan's prisoners, Wendy. Pan tries to speed up the plans he has for Henry, however, the boy insists his family is on the island and accuses Pan of hiding something from him. Wendy, deployed by Pan, feigns an illness because of lack of magic in Neverland and convinces Henry that she can get better if he restores magic to the island. In preparation for the task, Pan shows Henry to Skull Rock. To regain Tinker Bell's help, Neal, Emma, and Hook retrieve the star map to capture Pan's Shadow, who can fly them off the island. Neal learns of Hook and Emma's indiscretion, causing tensions between the two men, which almost jeopardizes their mission. After Emma traps the Shadow in the star map, she declares she is not choosing Neal or Hook, and that her main concern is Henry. Mary Margaret and David make up, and the rest of the group join them to reunite with Tinker Bell, who is on board with them now that they have an escape plan. ("Dark Hollow")

Regina and Mr. Gold run into the heroes, where Neal reveals his father's intentions towards Henry because of the seer's prophecy. As proof he won't do anything unsavory, Mr. Gold forfeits the box to his son. The group storm the Lost Boy camp, but Pan and Henry are not there, as they already left for Skull Rock. Wendy is freed, but in fear Pan will hurt her brothers in Storybrooke, she feigns ignorance about Henry. After receiving assurance that her brothers are safe, she admits Pan needs Henry's heart to become immortal, and once this happens, Henry will die. Emma, Regina, Neal, and Mr. Gold reach Skull Rock, but only Mr. Gold can pass the protection spell because he has no shadow. Instead of Mr. Gold absorbing Pan into the box, the latter traps him in it. Henry is persuaded by Pan that for magic to be returned to Neverland, he must give up his heart to him. Emma and Regina use magic to block out the moon and cover their shadows as well as Neal's, which allows the trio to get past the spell. They try to convince Henry of Pan's lies, but he is adamant about saving magic and sacrifices his heart to Pan. ("Think Lovely Thoughts")

With Henry dead and Pan having attained his long sought after immortality, Regina casts a preservation spell on her son as she and the others work to track down Pan. Emma persuades the Lost Boys into revealing Pan's hiding location, with her own promise of taking them back to Storybrooke. She, Regina, and Mary Margaret fall into a trap set by Pan, but Regina manages to break free and retrieve Henry's heart. Aboard the Jolly Roger, the heart is returned to Henry and he is revived. Pan is persistent, however, and he tries to take Henry's heart by force, only for Regina's protection spell to block him. His last alternative is to rip away Henry's shadow, but as he is doing it, Mr. Gold begins absorbing him into the box. Unknown to Mr. Gold, Henry and Pan switch bodies in this instant, with Henry in Pan's body being taken into the box as Pan is in Henry's body. ("Save Henry")

Upon coming to Storybrooke, Pan instigates trouble by releasing his Shadow and having it kill a resident to distract the heroes. He then tricks Regina into taking him to her vault, where he steals the Dark Curse scroll, with intentions of casting the curse again and making Storybrooke his new Neverland. The heroes, misled into thinking Pan is controlling the Shadow from inside the box, release him over the townline to render him magicless as they question his motives. Using knowledge only he and Emma would know, Henry uses it to prove his true identity to his family, despite being in Pan's body. ("The New Neverland")

Once Pan has cast the curse, the heroes seek the Black Fairy's wand, which the deceased Mother Superior had, in order to switch Pan and Henry back to their original bodies. Once this is done, Henry can return the curse scroll to Regina, who is the only one capable of undoing Pan's curse at a great magical cost. As Tinker Bell tries to negotiate with the nuns for the wand, the Shadow attacks. This seemingly untouchable creature is finally taken down when Tinker Bell harnesses pixie dust, ensnares it in the star map, and destroys it in a fire. The Shadow's demise revives Mother Superior, who hands over the wand. Mr. Gold succeeds with returning Pan and Henry to their rightful bodies, and while everyone leaves to find Henry, he stays behind to confront Pan. Pan reverts Mr. Gold to his cowardly self by taking away his magic, and then paralyzes the other heroes after they have reunited with Henry. After regaining the scroll, he begins narrowing down who to kill first, but then, Mr. Gold puts an end to both of them by stabbing Pan and himself with the Dark One's Dagger, which concludes Operation Henry. ("Going Home")

Weapons, Items and Magic Involved


Note: "Archive" denotes archive footage.