Once Upon A Time – Season 3 Finale Recap: Rings And Resolutions

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Tonight we begin at a foster home eight years ago, where teen Emma watches yet another kid get a forever home. Her foster mother assures her that she’ll find a home someday, but she doesn’t look like she’s feeling it.

Forward to present day Storybrooke, where Emma’s asking for the name of her new little brother, but Snow and David are staying mum until the official naming ceremony at Granny’s.

“You’re not going to hold him up in front of the clocktower like Lion King, are you?” she asks David. And I can’t help but wonder if the writers didn’t actually consider that, however briefly.

In rushes Henry, clutching a newspaper and terribly excited because he’s found an apartment for them both – a circumstance that Emma is less than enthusiastic about.

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Meanwhile, at Regina’s, things are much warmer. She and Robin are cuddled up, drinking wine in front of a fire, as Regina recounts the story of how she’d seen him all those years ago in the tavern, courtesy of Tinkerbell. “I just never thought I could have this,” she confesses. Robin tells her that when his wife died he felt like he’d never have this again, either. He proffers this bit of wisdom: “Maybe things work out when they’re supposed to.”

Over at Gold’s shop, there’s a decided chill in the air as Rumple hides the real Dark One dagger in his safe, sealing it with a protection spell. Belle comes fluttering in and she’s freaked out by the responsibility of holding the dagger. She asks Rumple if he’s got someplace better to keep it – like the impenetrable vault he had back in the Enchanted Forest. He reminds her that the vault held on the most dangerous and unstable magic – that which even he cannot comprehend. Didja get that? Remember it for later, kiddies.

Belle’s father has suddenly had a change of heart and is happy to give his daughter away in marriage to the guy who threatened to unleash the ogres on his town, kidnapped his daughter and forced her into slavery, murdered her former fiance and previously beat the everloving piss out of him. Way to go, Dad.

Over at Granny’s the tacky decorations are hung and Leroy’s slugging back the beers and talking about crap-flinging monkey babies. Henry is reading to his new Uncle, and not just any story, but the story of how Snow and Charming first met and their encounter at the Troll bridge.

David admits, strangely enough, that he didn’t fall in love with Snow because she slammed him in his terribly pretty man-face with a rock. Oh no, he fell in love with her the moment he saw his mother’s ring on her finger. Red points out that Snow ran away for awhile, and Hook off-handedly (heh!) remarks “Like mother, like daughter.” This prompts a serious eyeroll from Emma as she tries to sidestep Henry’s questions about whether or not they’re staying in Storybrooke.

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Once Upon A Time – Season 3, Episode 19 Recap: Footwear Is Powerful Magic, People

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We begin in the Enchanted Forest during the forgotten year, and Snow and David (along with Aurora and Philip) are preparing to announce publicly that the Prince’s seed has found purchase in the fertile field of his wife’s womb. Regina’s in a gorgeous gown, but for some reason, they’ve got her in this blinding white kabuki-style makeup that just looks really…odd.

Anway, Belle shows up and tells them all about Neal’s effort to resurrect Rumple and that Zelena now has the dagger. Aurora and Regina tell Snow (looking resplendant in her maternity wear) that now isn’t the time for a baby announcement, but Snow won’t hear of it. She wants to proclaim her bloating belly and swollen ankles to the world!

That’s when Aurora confesses that the witch is after a baby, specifically Snow’s baby – mainly because Aurora and Phillip totally told Zelena they were here.

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Zelena promptly turns them both into flying monkeys and freezes them all in place while she fondles Snow’s belly in a really creepy way.

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Once Upon A Time – Season 3, Episode 18 Recap: Sometimes, Dead Is Better

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We begin tonight with Regina, being paid a visit by her dear older sis, (bearing a basket of tart green apples, no less). Zelena starts in with her whining and Regina snarks about her envious ways. They hem and haw around each other until Zelena admits why she’s really there: as a distraction, so that Rumple can take her heart.

Over in the woods, Rumple is confronting Robin warning him away, when Roland shows up. He tells Robin that he doesn’t want to hurt Roland, but when Robin fires his never-miss arrow, Rumple redirects it toward Roland, holding it in mid-air until Robin hands the heart over.

He apologizes, takes the heart and leaves, dropping the arrow before it can hurt Roland. Regina shows up and Robin apologizes out the ass but Regina’s just glad Roland is okay. Regina points out that she’s still alive, which means Zelena has taken the heart for a far worse purpose.

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Once Upon A Time – Season 3, Episode 17 Recap: My Love Is An Anchor Tied To You

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Yes, I titled this recap with an old school song reference. But it’s an awesome song so listen to it after you read.

This evening we begin on a quiet road in the Enchanted Forest, where a coach clatters along. Suddenly, a helmeted knight appears! No, that’s not a euphemism!

The coachmen asks who the man is and he replies (in a very deep voice) that he’s there to rob them, and even with the helmet obscuring his face and hidden by a suit of armor, there’s just no mistaking that crisp, Shakespearean elocution. Hello Hook! And don’t you look dashing in armor!

It turns out that Hook and his crew have turned to banditry in lieu of a ship, and they head off to celebrate their latest haul at a local tavern. The men have chipped in and bought Hook some female companionship for the evening (as if they’d have to pay any woman – please!) and he heads off with the tasty morsel, only to pay her off twice over with her promise that she won’t tell the men he was sending her on her way disappointed.

Awwww. A faithful pirate. My heart.

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And the reward he gets for his undying devotion is a club to the back of the head and a knife to his throat, courtesy of one really, really pissed-off mermaid.

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Once Upon A Time – Season 3 Episode 16 Recap: Never Bring Your Heart To A Witch Fight

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We begin tonight with Zelena’s backstory. She’s been dropped as an infant via cyclone in the woods of Oz, where a married couple (who are enroute to the Emerald City) find her. The woman takes her in, over the man’s objections – and the man has good cause to object. Baby Zelena drops a tree with a wave of her hand.

Forward to present-day and Neal’s funeral, where one by one everyone’s looking down at the grave camera and tossing in a spadeful of dirt to obscure the lens. Everyone is lost in their own misery, except for Regina, who is clearly lost in Henry’s. It’s a beautiful touch to add to the scene.

Across town Zelena is taunting Rumple about how he went through all these machinations, waited all this time only to badly fail his son.

“Tell me Rumple, was he really worth all that trouble?” she asks.

A heartbroken Rumple replies: “Every bit of it. He was family. Something you know nothing about.”

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Once Upon A Time – Season 3, Episode 15: Candlesticks And Crazy People

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We begin with an early morning meeting at Granny’s between our cadre of major characters, all wondering how in the hell it is that Rumplestiltskin is alive. Hook mentions that back in the Enchanted Forest, Neal had been searching for a way to bring his father back, hoping that his father could help him return to Emma and Henry. How Hook knows this, I don’t know, since he rode off before Neal had that conversation with Belle a few episodes ago. Screw continuity, on with the show!

Emma reminds him that no one has seen Neal – it’s possible he’s even a flying monkey. Regina wants another crack at the farmhouse – it’s possible there’s something magical there that can help them. They all agree to reconvene later.

Over on the hill above Storybrooke (there’s a hill above Storybrooke?) Zelena tries to summon The Dark One with his dagger – unsuccessfully. The Dark One has somehow broken free from the dagger’s power so she sends a monkey after him. Cue Rumple running through the forest.

Emma lets Belle know that Rumple is alive, and sets Belle looking for a clue within the shop. Hook gallantly offers to stay behind with Belle to protect her in case the witch pays a visit and Belle reminds him that he’s previously tried to kill her. Twice.

“Sorry?” he says with a sheepish grin, and Belle magnanimously chooses to accept that apology. Then again, being threatened at gunpoint wasn’t so awful for her, as I recall.

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