This is a theory I've had for a while now, which dates back to when I first saw 'That Still Small Voice' During one of Henry's counselling sessions, where Archie tells him he needs to stop believing in the fairytales, I realised that Henry doesn't want to. Not just stop believing. Henry doesn't want to grow up. Throughout the entire first season he holds on to his faith in the book, in the same way any child holds onto their belief in fairies, Santa and magic.
A boy who won't grow up. Sound familar? That's because it's a trait Henry shares perfectly with Peter. Peter Pan, in both J.M Barrie's original and Disney's adaption, is a young boy who refuses to grow up just like our friend Henry. This childlike faith and resilience is held onto by Henry throughout the first season, even when Emma tells him to stop believing.
So what else links the two characters? I'd say both's search for a mother. Whilst Peter Pan recruits Wendy to be his 'mother', Henry is desperate to reconnect with his real mother Emma. Both also suffer from abandonment from their parents. A tenuous link, but a link nonetheless. They're also parallels of each other. Peter escapes our world into a land of magic, just as Henry does, but there's one key difference. Henry brings magic from the Enchanted Forest (It sounds better than Fairytale-land) to the real world effectively doing the opposite of Peter.
|Faith, Trust and an Evil Queen's magic?|
Then these pictures surfaced. Henry flying. Just like Peter Pan. Albeit with the help of a spell or two of Regina's but maybe Henry keeps the flight. If he can fly he's a lot closer to becoming Peter.
I'm probably completely wrong and shouldn't try second-guessing the Once writers. I mean, who saw Ruby actually being the Wolf? However I'd love to see this happen. It would be a great twist and the town of Storybrooke probably doesn't have much space left for new character (more of that in a future theory) and I love Peter Pan.
Next time in Once Upon A Theory: Two villains, a curse and a spinning wheel.