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Once Upon A Time


Once Upon A Recap

By Kelvin Cedeño

Dark Hollow

(Episode 3x07)


Flashing back to the end of season two/beginning of season three, we see Rumpel and Belle’s last moments together before the Jolly Roger disappears. Belle, despite her pain, is determined to carry out the task Rumpel gave her and protect Storybrooke. She lets the Blue Fairy know about the cloaking spell he had given her, and Blue suggests they go down in the mines where the fairy dust will spread the magic. As Belle activates the spell, two mysterious strangers manage to drive into the town just as the shield descends behind them.

Once Upon A Time

Flash forward to now. Belle still grieves for Rumpel and desperately wishes she could do something to save him. At that moment, Grumpy arrives with none other than Ariel, who he found swimming to their shore. She was told by Rumpel to retrieve an item in his shop that only Belle would be able to have access to. Based on a series of clues Rumpel has pre-recorded via a sand dollar Ariel brought with her, Belle figures out the chipped cup is a key to a secret compartment. Inside the compartment is Pandora’s Box.

The two strangers arrive on the scene and reveal that they’re from the home base, but unlike Greg and Tamara, they’re aware they work for Peter Pan. They bind Ariel and Belle up and steal the box. Belle manages to take Ariel’s enchanted bracelet off which turns her back into a mermaid and frees her from her ties. Once Ariel’s legs are back, the two chase the strangers down in the mines where they plan on opening the box. Belle stops them by pushing a mine cart their way and disarms them. They explain that they’re only doing this because Pan has their sister hostage: Wendy.

Once Upon A Time

Ariel takes the box back with her to Neverland and hands it to Rumpel. As a reward, Regina enchants Ariel’s bracelet so that she can become a human whenever she pleases. Before heading back to Storybrooke to find Prince Eric, Ariel tells them about Wendy’s imprisonment and requests they save her.

Neverland: Emma, Baelfire, and Hook

Emma, Baelfire, and Hook venture out to capture the Shadow as a means of leaving Neverland. Snow and David, meanwhile, have an argument over his secret. Bae takes Emma and Hook to the Shadow’s lair called Dark Hollow. It is here that it also brings the shadows of its victims. The candle Emma assumed was designed for just a constellation map also turns out to be a device that can trap the Shadow. Hook and Bae, both in an effort to impress Emma, fight over the lighting of the candle much to her chagrin.

Once Upon A Time

Suddenly, the Shadow appears with two of its victims. Hook and Bae are pinned to trees and almost have their shadows ripped out until Emma summons a flame on the candle via magic. The Shadow is sucked into it, and Emma traps it. Emma clarifies that she’s not choosing between either Hook or Bae but instead Henry. They rejoin Snow and David, who’ve found Tinker Bell, and formulate their plan to rescue Henry.

Neverland: Henry

Pan continues trying to sway Henry over to his side to no avail. After overhearing Pan sending Felix on a mission he stresses Henry can’t know about, Henry follows Felix through the jungle. He arrives at a treehouse and finds Wendy inside, lying in bed and coughing. She tells him that because she’s been on the island for over a century, she’s tied to it, and its dying magic had made her ill. Henry vows to find a way to save her and departs before Felix finds him.

Once Upon A Time

Peter comes out of hiding in the treehouse and congratulates Wendy on her performance which she was obviously reluctant to participate in. He then has her locked up in the cage she’s been in for the past century. Henry later confronts Pan about Wendy, and Pan confesses that he didn’t wish for Henry to find out about it because it would be too much of a burden. When Henry asks Pan how he’s able to save magic (and consequently Wendy), Pan tells him the location he must venture to: Skull Rock.

Once Upon A Theory

It was a bit astounding to discover that the seven episodes of season three thus far have amounted to merely five days in the story’s timeline. After spending all these episodes in the jungles of Neverland, it was a nice change of pace to see Storybrooke again. More importantly, Belle was able to service the plot in an active way instead of just being Rumpel’s emotional anchor as usual.

Once Upon a Time

The twist surrounding the identity of the home base duo (John and Michael Darling) was a fascinating one. They explained to Belle and Ariel that they’re currently in their 20s due to Pan. Since Wendy is still a young girl over in Neverland, most likely John and Michael have spent most of their time in Neverland over the century and have aged little by little in that time frame whenever they’ve returned back to our world. How Wendy even ended up kidnapped and why hasn’t yet been explained, but she apparently knows Baelfire as does Tinker Bell. It remains to be seen if Tink has any familiarity with Wendy in this version and if so, what her opinion of her is.

Once Upon A Time

Using Pandora’s box to control Pan is a cheeky device on the writers’ part, and the audience is still waiting to know what exactly Rumpel and Pan’s history is. Whatever it is, it’s bound to give more layers to the showdown between the two entities, and while everyone is out trying to save Henry, who will save Wendy?



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