Once Upon a Time Recap: Off to See the Wizard

Once Upon a Time Recap Zelena OzThis week on ABC’s Once Upon a Time, we not only found out why the Wicked Witch is green, but also what her reality-changing endgame is. Plus: Regina gives Robin Hood her heart, and the Wizard of Oz is revealed!

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IN THE OZ THAT WAS…. | When a couple finds a baby in the wake of a twister, they name her Zelena and bring her home to Oz. Alas, Dad is none too fond of his daughter’s “wicked” powers, so grown Zelena goes off to see the “great and terrible” Wizard to get answers about her past. The Wizard shows how Cora abandoned Zelena as a baby, then gave birth to Regina to attain royalty status. When Zelena witnesses Rumple teaching young Regina magic, she wants in, so the Wizard gives her silver slippers to click three times to travel to The Enchanted Forest. There, Rumple warns Regina’s sister not to be so envious, as she is literally turning green. And when Zelena goes to kill Regina — only to discover it was a ruse — Rumple says he will no longer train her, as she is disqualified from enacting his curse. “Next time you will choose me,” Zelena warns, before using the slippers to return to Oz.

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IN STORYBROOKE…. |  After Neal’s funeral, everyone gathers at Granny’s, where Tink busts Regina’s chops about meeting her soul mate but doing nothing about it, while Hook suggests to Emma that he spend some time with Henry to share stories about his dad. After Henry (conveniently) is gone, Zelena shows up to visit her “little sister” and announce a showdown at sundown. Seeking to confirm the Wicked Witch’s family ties, Regina digs up an old letter that upsets her, and which she later shares with a compassionate Robin Hood. The letter was from Rumple, hailing Cora’s firstborn as the most powerful sorceress he has ever seen — words that Regina oftentimes in the past would revisit, for a morale boost. But now she realizes he was referring to Zelena, and that if his assessment is true, “There’s no way I can win this fight.”

Meanwhile by the docks, Hook attempts to teach Henry how to use a sextant (“Like GPS?”/”Aye”), just as he taught Bae, er, Neal, when he was a boy, er, um, whoops. Henry’s now like, “Cut the s–t, oddly dressed man,” and Hook boils the lesson down to this: Neal lost his dad, too, at the same age you are now. You have more in common than you realize.

Come sundown, Zelena arrives on Main Street ready to rumble, unimpressed with the “savior’s” attempt to step in. Regina finally shows, witch-slaps her green menace, but then starts getting tossed around like a rag doll, ultimately getting hurled up and through the clock tower face. Zelena then goes to pluck her heart… only it’s not there. Regina then crushes her foe with this splendid verbal beat-down: “My mother always taught me, ‘Never bring your heart to a witch fight’ — something you’d know if she hadnt abandoned you.” Defeated, for now, Zelena flies off on her broom, while Regina and the Charmings can only wonder what the Wicked Witch plans to brew with ingredients such as a heart and courage.

Later, Regina meets up with Robin Hood, who was standing guard over her heart in the forest. She explains how she had the idea to use the one asset Zelena never had access to — Cora — to thwart her, this time at least. But to be safe, Regina gives her heart to Robin Hood, to safeguard. He reminds her that she still owes him that drink, an idea that, judging by her smile, she seems more amenable to now.

Meanwhile in the storm cellar, Rumple taunts Zelena that if he could do it all over again, he’d still choose to mentor Regina. Zelena counters, “We’ll see about that,” because she’s not out to cast just a curse. She’s looking for a “second chance.” And in the final Oz flashback, we see her ask the Wizard to turn back time, but he says that’s impossible. Zelena then tears away the curtain, revealing a fumbling carny from Kansas — Walsh! Having no need for him in that form, she turns him inco an obedient flying monkey, vowing to find a way back in time so that Regina is never even born.

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Notable quotables:

* “Perhaps I could talk to him?” “About what, leather conditioner and eyeliner?”
* “This isn’t the Wild West.” “No, dearie, it’s the Wicked West.”
* “I think my mother would have told me if she had a love child with the scarecrow.”
* “Out of my way, munchkin.” “I’m a dwarf.” “That’s even worse.”

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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255 Comments
  1. Babybop says:

    I love the show – glad that Regina is getting her awesomeness back by outsmarting Zelena. But, seriously, how many times do they have to say “wicked” in one episode? It’s getting a little cheesy – hard for me to take that character seriously.

  2. Whatevah says:

    I liked Hook.

  3. A says:

    Here’s what I’m thinking: Cora signed a contract granting Rumplestiltskin their firstborn child — then promptly ditched him. Since we don’t know yet who Zelena’s father is, I’m wondering if that contract will later come into play. If Rumple is her father, can he use it to gain control over her and get his dagger back?

  4. Gail says:

    So will Rose McGowan as Cora episode promised for this year be the episode where Zelena goes to the past to prevent Regina from being born? Since Flying Monkey’s can resume their human appearance while still enthralled to Zelena, what if Robin Hood has been turned into a monkey and he gives Regina’s heart to Zelena?

  5. JAH says:

    Am I the only one who thought Rumple was Zelena’s biological father?! I mean she must have been conceived before Cora met Rumple if he isn’t the father… but then how is she so insanely powerful? They demonstrated this week that she is stronger than both Cora and Regina. Meanwhile, having seen the image floating around of Zelena and Rumple kissing, I have to assume they aren’t going to go all incest-y on us… right?

    • Stormy says:

      Maybe her father was Merlin. We’ve seen Lancelot, so the rest of Arthur’s circle might have been aRound.

  6. iwish says:

    Thank you Matt for the great recap. My favorite “… Meanwhile by the docks, Hook attempts to teach Henry how to use a sextant (“Like GPS?”/”Aye”), just as he taught Bae, er, Neal, when he was a boy, er, um, whoops. Henry’s now like, “Cut the s–t, oddly dressed man,”

    For starters, I really enjoy this show and if I think that any one character is going to be perfect “according to me” I will always be disappointed. There are so many things I could pick apart but, If i get to that point I really won’t enjoy the show. For instance, I really, really did not like MRJ as Bae and it had nothing to do with Hook/Emma or MRJ himself. The discrepency between the younger vesion and the older version of Bae/Neal was hard to swallow. I agree with whoever said MRJ is a good actor but his performance in OUAT was just not believable. He did not incorporate any of the younger Bae’s persona, passion and conviction when he expressed himself. Neal was such a DUD. Neal’s character was inconsistent with what had already been established for Bae’s character and I blame this more on the people who cast MRJ as the older version of Bae and the writing. Bae would not have ended up as a petty thief, with an American street accent and with very little intuitive intelligence. Young Bae was so wise beyond his years and if he could walk away from his father and Hook based upon conviction why couldn’t he avoid the mess with Emma? Blah! At any rate, I still accepted that Neal was around and was Henry’s dud father and Emma was supposed to feel deep love and admiration for someone who was basically a loser when she knew him (she never knew him as the awesome young Baelfire). I didn’t let it ruin the whole show for me. As a whole, the show is awesome and I enjoy how every week is something new with interesting plot lines and back stories, while the main characters are developed mainly through subtlety and nuance.

    Overall, I thoroughly enjoy Once Upon a Time

    ps. shallow pet peeves – Hey Snow, now that you know who you are you can lose the Mary Margaret Haircut … somehow, the longer hair is more bad ass. Hey Emma, at least go home and practice smiling before that frown is forever etched into your pretty face.

  7. JM says:

    Just watched the episode. Was so happy Walsh turned out to be the wizard–just as I predicted many months ago when it was announced that he would be guest starring. Yah!

  8. hatorl says:

    I loved the scenes between Robin and Regina <3 I want to see more development of that relationship and NO tragic ending! I need a confirmation that Sean will be a regular next season.
    I'm so tired, my ships always end badly.

  9. Swan Queen/Evil Regals, (not all just some bitter), it is really getting old you guys bashing Robin Hood’s character ever freakin’ chance you get. Robin Hood is not a stranger to Regina; her true love/soul mate she’s known about for YEARS before Emma was even born! He’s the only one not questioning her motives and is on her side; knowing he is her soul mate she opens up to him. She also is attracted to him. You really care about Regina so much you don’t want her to find her true love and happiness; just to have pipe dreams about her turning gay and hooking up with Emma; sad but true. The character is straight and Robin Hood is her true love; get over it and leave Robin/Sean alone for the sake of just being bitter. And if you are a real Lana/Regina fan & Evil Regal you want her character happy. Off my soap box now commence of spewing her hatred for Robin as you always do.

  10. Gail says:

    It would be great if Zerena and Regina go to the past with Zerena trying to prevent Regina’s birth, I guess by killing Cora while she is pregnant with Regina and Regina trying to stop her. Regina being with Cora and Cora not knowing who she is. I hope that is the direction they go with this.