Present Day in Storybrooke
Zelena, looking like the every bit of Mary Poppins from the evil side of the tracks, is trying to summon Rumple with his dagger. It’s not working, she smirks or snarls, basically looks wicked. He isn’t in a box, with a fox, or a van with a fan. He’s running through the woods like a mad man.
Back in the Enchanted Forest:
Bael and Belle are at Rumple’s castle; Bael is searching for a way to bring Rumple back to life so he can return to the real world to find Emma and Henry. The visit the library and find a conveniently place candelabra. Upon illumination a face appears in the flames. He introduces himself as Lumiere, claiming he was trapped in the candles after a run-in with Rumple. He is sufficiently French and feisty. He reveals a book with a key that will bring Rumple back to life. As with any dark magic there Is a price. Bael does not care and he moves forward with the plan to bring Rumple back from the “dead.” B and B find the secret seal in the forest. Bael places the key in the slot; it unlocks the seal and burns an emblem into the palm of his hand: a triangle surrounded by squiggly lines. A liquid black Rumple shaped figure appears. Bael and Belle are confused. The Wicked Witch reveals herself and Rumple knows his son has been deceived by Lumiere and the witch. While trying to retain his son and the RumpleDagger, he realizes he can’t do both, he mind melds with Bael and relinquishes the dagger. Wicked Witch got what she came for.
Back in Storybrooke
Henry grouses about what looks like a perfectly fine bagel and tells his mom he is only going along for the ride, and does not believe one bit that she is in Storybrooke to help her client Hook. He then threatens to go back to NYC. Henry, you’re 12, simmer down, is what she should have said. Instead, she relents a bit but does not tell anything near the truth. The Scooby Gang, continues the hunt for Mr. Gold, reconvenes at Gold’s shop and decide to split up for a real search and rescue mission: Hook and Belle, even though he has tried to kill her twice; Emma and Charming, daddy-daughter duo and Regina sets out on her own. Snow is sent home because well, she is 24 months pregnant and shouldn’t be traipsing around the woods looking for winged monkeys and witches. She pouts and calls her new bestie, Zelena the midwife. Zelena is the only person in town wearing all green and NO ONE has seen her before now. Yet she isn’t the first suspect. Okay. Whatever… Master Detective Emma.
Neal stumbles into Gold’s shop. Belle and Hook take him to the hospital and call Emma. She and David leave the forest to get the scoop on where he has been. Like everyone else Neal doesn’t know what has happened, just that he woke up in the woods. Hook hugs Neal and It’s awkward. Belle hugs Neal, and it’s awkward. If you thought Neal was making it out of this episode alive you weren’t paying attention. Emma and David leave Neal in the hospital and continue their scouting mission.
Regina is at Old Lady Zelena’s hideout, Robin is there too, they share an almost beat for beat exchange, similar to when they broke into her crypt in episode 12. More cute and flirty banter; I’m eating it up. She swears she has met him before, he says he thinks he would remember such and encounter. As they begin to share a bottle of whiskey the sleeve of his shirt pulls back and we see his coat of arms tattoo. Regina flashes back to seeing her soul mate in a pub those years ago. She passes on the drink and leaves Robin with nothing but an empty glass and a full crossbow.
Zelena is at Snow’s house pumping her for information and feeding her poisoned orange juice. Snow still unaware that Zelena is the witch happily spills the beans about the fruitless search. Zelena tells Snow she won’t let her have the baby without her. Hand that rocks the fairytale cradle much, sheesh.
Emma and David are still roaming through the woods. They hear screams and find Gold, muttering about the voices in his head. He tells them Zelena is the Witch. OH SNA… the hell with it, the most anti-climactic reveal ever. One of the winged simians dive bombs the trio. David fends it off as Emma and Gold escape. Emma bumps into Neal in the woods, he begins morphing into Gold/Neal. He asks her to use her power to separate he and Gold. She does and Neal dies an awkward death.
Emma runs off to Snow’s to meet up with David. Zelena has escaped through a window and back into the woods. She holds the RumpleDagger and Gold in her power. He wants to know what she wants with Snow’s baby. She does not respond and tells him she just wants what is in his brain.
Emma tells Henry that his father is dead and he was actually a good man; she will avenge his death.
Aaaaaand with this episode, I am absolutely over the Wicked Witch. Someone douse her with water, so we can move on to another villain. The last 2 episodes have been pretty painful. While as a TV watcher I know their purpose, I said this last year: this is the other point in the season where I would let the episodes build up on my DVR, marathon watch 13-18 in one weekend, and then jump back in guns blazing for the final 4 episodes.
Good news, Oncers!. Entertainment Weekly is reporting that Michael Socha, who starred as Will Scarlet in Once Upon a Time‘s recently canceled spinoff Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, will be joining Once Upon a Time as a series regular next season. This news is not yet official, as the show has not officially been renewed; the show will assuredly be renewed, however, and then the fan-favorite actor will still be in the Once Upon a Time universe.