We are counting down to the season finale. After tonight, that’s three episodes in a row, including the finale. And we’ve been promised answers before the end of the season for some of the biggest questions haunting us. We didn’t get them tonight, but boy are things in a tangle. Just when I think it can’t get any worse, it does.
Our look back in The Enchanted Forest was a look at an untold chapter in the story of Belle and Rumplestiltskin. Rumple is complaining about Belle crying every night and how it keeps him from his important work of spinning, which in turn helps him think. He gives he a pillow, not to help her sleep but to stifle her crying.
They are interrupted by someone breaking into the house. Rumple rushes to the noise and finds someone stealing a wand. While they didn’t tell us yet, with all the promoting they’ve been doing, I knew right away it was Robin Hood. He has an enchanted bow, which never misses. And sure enough, it finds Rumple and hits his heart even though Rumple transports around the room. Of course, since Rumple is magic, the arrow does nothing to him.
Rumple captures Robin and puts him in his dungeon, planning to skin him alive. But before he can, Belle frees Robin. Rumple isn’t happy when he finds out, and promises to track Robin down and shoot him with his own bow while making Belle watch. Belle tries to appeal to his good nature and tells him you can never know what is in someone’s heart until you’ve really seen it. But Rumple says, “I’m darker than people say.”
Off they go, tracking Robin to the edge of Sherwood Forest where they run into the Sheriff. Sheriff tries to trade his knowledge of Robin (this is where we finally learn his name) into a night with Belle, but Rumple doesn’t make the trade, taking Sheriff’s tongue instead and then offering it back in trade.
And so Belle and Rumple head into the forest where they find Robin is waiting for someone. And just as Belle has said, Robin stole the wand for a reason. He uses it to heal a very sick – and pregnant – Maid Marion.
While Belle keeps begging, Rumple can’t quite kill Robin like he’s promised. What really hits home is when Belle asks if he’d really let the child grow up fatherless. Rumple shoots, but the arrow misses. He tries to claim he just missed, but Belle reminds him it is a magic bow and gives him a hug.
They return home, but Rumple isn’t done with Belle for the day. He shows her a new room she now has to keep clean – a library. I love that scene from the animated movies, so I was thrilled to see them recreate it here. Rumple pretends it is all about the work she will have to do, but Belle doesn’t fall for it. “You are so much better than people say you are.”
So that wraps up our time in Enchanted Forest. Now let’s get to all the happenings in Storybrooke.
As the episode opens, Gold is having a nightmare about killing Henry in front of everyone. After all, it’s the only way to keep his grandson from being his undoing. Obviously, he is going to need help to keep that from happening.
Then Regina learns who Henry’s father is – Neal. That does not make her happy at all. She even accuses Mr. Gold of knowing all along since he arranged the adoption, but he denies it. He also says he is trying to turn over a new leaf to win his new family’s love, but Regina tells him it will never work.
There is one person who can help Gold because she has always brought out the best in him – Belle. He plans to get her released from the hospital and hopefully help her gain her memories back. However, before he can, Regina shows up and “helps” Belle remember who she is. Enchanting a matchbook, Regina hands it to Belle who contemplates it.
Next thing Gold knows, Belle is down at The Rabbit Hole, a local dive bar, hustling pool. She remembers her name is Lacey. Gold is not happy, and confronts Regina, who tries to play it cool. There’s just one problem with this, Lacey is a new creation since Belle spent the entire time of the curse in the basement of the hospital. And she has a very different personality than we’ve seen before. No, Gold doesn’t mention that, but it was what struck me right away.
So Gold goes to the one person he think can help him – David. After all, David and Mary Margaret fell in love even while cursed. David explains it is because a small part of them was still there underneath their cursed selves. So they need to tap into that with Lacey/Belle. David goes with Gold back to The Rabbit Hole and Gold asks Lacey out on a date which she accepts.
The date at Granny’s seems to be going well. Lacey has heard Gold’s reputation, but he denies it. And when Lacey repeats Belle’s line about not knowing someone until you know their hearts, Gold reacts a bit and accidentally spills his drink on her dress. She goes to the bathroom to wash it out – and never returns.
Gold goes to investigate to find Belle kissing the Sheriff of Nottingham. Gold breaks them up, but Lacey tells him their date just isn’t working out. Gold isn’t who she thought he was.
That’s when Sheriff comes back to apologize to Gold, but he isn’t going to take it. He takes out Sheriff’s tongue “So no one can hear you scream” and then starts beating him. Lacey comes around the corner. At first, Gold thinks he’s now turned her off completely, but Lacey is actually happy about it. “You are so much worse than people say.” And Gold agrees as he turns back to beating Sheriff.
Meanwhile, Mary Margaret and David take Emma to show her the field of beans which are growing quite nicely under the care of Tiny and the dwarfs. The Blue Fairy has cloaked them, so Regina doesn’t know what’s going on.
Regina goes to confront Emma about keeping Henry’s father’s identity a secret from her. “I was kind of busy since you were trying to kill me and my entire family.” I love scenes between those two. Anyway, when Emma challenges Regina to change before she loses Henry for good, Regina decides Emma is hiding something.
Which is why she watches for the work party to return that night. She then enchants their tire tracks and follows them to the field. She uncloaks it and finds the field of beans. She plucks one and gets a smile on her face.
That night, Emma also talks to Neal about the idea of returning to Enchanted Forest. She’s hesitant since it has been overrun by ogres and our world is her home. Neal isn’t remotely interested in going back. After all, he spent a lot of time trying to escape. “I didn’t exactly have a fairy tale childhood.”
Finally, we’ve got a couple scenes with Greg and Tamara aka the Stranger and Neal’s finacee. Early in the episode, they are talking about a package that she’s got hidden just outside of town and plans to get that night. I wasn’t sure what it was until they were talking at the town limits that night. As they referred to the package as “he” I knew. Hook is back. Granted, he’s tied up and not too happy, but he’s back in town.
So, it looks like Gold is going to embrace his darkness. And Belle/Lacey will be encouraging him. This can’t be good.
What is Regina going to do with/to the beans?
Should the characters return to Enchanted Forest or stay in Storybrooke?
Will Belle ever get her true memories back? And what about the dwarf who has lost his memories as well way back in episode two this season.
And who is the owner of The Rabbit Hole? Someone else from Wonderland? Or was it Sheriff? I’m going to say he’s just a bartender unless we see otherwise.
And did I miss anything else? I’m not sure I’ve got any theories about what is coming up next, but I’d love to hear what you guys think will happen in the weeks to come.