Once Upon A Time -- Did Regina Really Choose Everyone's Storybrooke Lives?
Both Jefferson and Gold seemed to be suggesting that Regina constructed the lives that everyone was leading in Storybrooke. Jefferson even wanted Regina to construct a new life for him and Grace in Storybrooke. And Gold said he knew Regina couldn't resist bringing Maleficent over to Storybrooke, which suggests that perhaps Regina didn't bring everyone over from Fairy Tale Land. That she picked and chose who would be swept up in The Dark Curse.
Regina brought Belle over and had her locked away in secret, perhaps as something to use against Rump if the situation should arise. She knew Belle was someone she could use against Gold, just like she used that teacup that meant something to Belle and Rump to make Gold admit he remembered everything.
She also brought over people that were supposed to be close to her. Like her supposed best friend, Maleficent. She had Maleficent locked in the basement and trapped in the form of a dragon. She made Sydney the editor of The Mirror, a newspaper. And Graham was sheriff and Regina's love which was similar to what his life was in Fairy Tale Land.
She also brought over people she had an ax to grind with like Hansel and Gretel. We saw the nice life she gave Grace, and she could have given Hansel and Gretel a nice life, too. But because they rejected her offer to live with her and opted to continue to look for their father [that Regina had kidnapped], she had them be homeless and parentless in Storybrooke.
Jefferson seemed to be another she had an ax to grind with, even though she was the one who betrayed him. She trapped him in a house in a place where he could see Grace with the new family Regina had given her to. Happy and forever out of Jefferson's reach.
And, of course, there was the person she had the biggest ax to grind with, Snow White. She made her a mousy spinster school teacher with a lonely life, while paying Charming back for breaking the sleeping spell she put on Snow White, by having him be the one to be afflicted by the sleeping spell, instead.
She also seemed to bring along those who helped Snow White. Jiminy Cricket became Archie the psychiatrist, which was kind of similar to his life in Fairy Tale Land when he was trying to give everyone advice on how to live their lives. She also brought along the dwarfs, Geppetto, Granny and Red. She even had Abigail aka Kathryn be married to Charming in this world while her true love, Frederick, was the gym teacher at the school Mary-Margaret worked for.
Although, I do wonder if the people who had magical power were able to have some affect over the life they were leading. Like the fairies being nuns. That would seem to suit the Blue Fairy more than anything. When Nova wanted a life with Dreamy she put a stop to it, saying they couldn't be together. And before the curse was about to take place she told Geppetto she had to return to the fairies to prepare. If I were going to give the Blue Fairy a bad new life I'd make her the madam in a house of ill-repute and let her be a slave to men's desires like she made the dwarfs a slave to her need for fairy dust. Rump's magic had been frozen thanks to the Blue Fairy, but hers wasn't. So is it possible she was able to affect the life she and the fairies were living in Storybrooke?
In regards to Cinderella, she was more an enemy of Rump than of Regina. Maybe part of the deal he struck with Regina was to bring her to Storybrooke and return her to the life of servitude she was living before she struck her deal with him, because she'd broken the deal with him. However, she was working for Granny and her evil stepmother and stepsisters were nowhere around. So maybe they got left behind in Fairy Tale Land.
There's also the life Gold is living. He's a pawnbroker. Pawnbroker's are generally looked down on because they're not considered a member of polite society, but they're someone you come to to make a deal when your desperate. Much like Rump was looked down on, but when people were desperate they came to him to make a deal. There's real irony in the life he's leading. He also seems to have most of his magic items in his shop. Was that also part of the deal Rump struck with Regina? The only magic that was in Storybrooke was in the magical items they still possessed and Rump still possessed a whole shop full of them. So that would give him a degree of magic. And that would seem to be the last thing Regina would want, so that may have been also part of the deal Rump made with Regina.
For the most part it does seem that Regina did craft the lives all the people she brought to Storybrooke would live. It also seems possible she picked and chose who would get swept up in the curse. When you think about how she molded these people's lives into what she wanted them to be, you really see just how evil Regina truly is, just so she could finally pay back Snow White.