From Liars to lock-ups, singers to surgeons, and seemingly everything in between, television has embraced the spectrum of queer female characters. Sunday night's episode of Once Upon a Time revealed one more, this time coming from the world of fantasy and fairy tale. Late in the episode, Mulan, played by Jamie Chung, was revealed to be harboring a latent love for Princess Aurora. Faced with the opportunity to join Robin Hood's band, Mulan decides that she must first talk to "someone" before it's too late. Shortly after, Mulan is seen in Aurora's castle, telling her friend coyly that she is, "just gathering my courage." When Aurora happily confides in her friend that she is pregnant with Prince Philip's baby, Mulan abruptly tells Aurora she will by joining Robin Hood, eyes filled with tears.
The episode seemingly confirms Once producer Edward's Kitsis promise that the show will feature a gay character. Earlier this summer, he stressed his urge to show respect for true love, rather than using LGBT character(s) as a proverbial mark on the television must-have checklist.
While her feelings may be unrequited for now, Aurora's saddened "You're leaving us?" inquiry as Mulan walked away implies a potential deeper look into the complexities of queer love. Whether Aurora will reciprocate, or a new relationship is in store for the newly-outed Mulan, the world of Once continues to keep us guessing. Once Upon a Timeairs Sundays at 8 | 7c on ABC.