Neal Cassidy

Neal Cassidy

    Once Upon a Time
Photo Credit: ABC Press

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Grew up… in a number of fairytale worlds. Neal is the son of Rumplestiltskin (aka Mr. Gold), but not much is known about his childhood – except for the fact that he was born with the name Baelfire, and Rumplestiltskin abandoned him.

Living… in New York.  After leaving his girlfriend Emma years ago while she was pregnant with their son, Neal straightened out his life and settled there.  

Visiting… Storybrooke, Maine, in the hopes of convincing Emma to give him a second chance at having a family with her and their son Henry. Emma had given up Henry for adoption, but the boy recently tracked her down. Neal even passionately tells Emma, “I wanted to look for you, but I was too afraid that you wouldn't forgive me because I never forgave myself. There hasn't been a day that's gone by that I don't regret having left you.”

Profession… formerly a thief. Now, he mostly wants to be a dad. He’s hoping to do that in Storybrooke, which is actually a magical town created by a curse cooked up by the Evil Queen with the help of Neal’s dad, who goes by Mr. Gold in Storybrooke.

Interests… anything that doesn't involve magic! Neal’s spent his whole life running from magic – it even drove him from Emma, whom he truly loved. His distrust (often outright hatred) of magic stems from bad experiences growing up as Rumplestiltskin’s son.

Relationship Status… engaged to Tamara, who is not who she seems. A piece of his heart will always belong to Emma, though.     

Challenge… obtaining – and giving – forgiveness. Neal’s father, the often manipulative and untrustworthy Mr. Gold, truly wants nothing more than for his son to accept his love. Meanwhile, Neal is simultaneously looking for forgiveness from both Emma and Henry.

Personality… stubborn, independent, and heroic. He’ll protect the people he cares about, even if it means sacrificing himself. 


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