This week on ABC’s Once Upon a Time, we finally learned what is truly driving Gideon’s quest, while Hook plotted a course for Storybrooke — only to run into some very bad boys.
Setting aside the continuity hiccup that Hamilton couldn’t possibly be a thing yet in the Once timeline (where it’s not even 2014), I found this to be one of the season’s more engaging episodes. The Black Fairy is one nasty piece of work, and I am most curious to see what she has planned for Storybrooke. It was also fun, albeit a tease, to see Emma and Gideon working alongside each other, as they logically should be, only to have that partnership ripped out from under us.
Upon learning that Gideon (allegedly) wants her help to destroy the Black Fairy, lest Hook never be allowed back to this realm, Emma loops in Rumple on the latest. He reveals to her that the Black Fairy is no less than his own mother, and that she tortured Gideon for 28 years. And if Emma does help him defeat the Black Fairy, the source of all darkness, she will not only save those in her realm, but everyone in Storybrooke as well.
Thus recognizing Gideon as “someone who needs hope,” Emma offers her services — in trade for A) his sword and B) his promise to bring Hook back ASAP. To the latter end, he takes them to the Sorcerer’s Mansion, perhaps only because they needed a large, maze-like set for what is to come. There, Gideon guides Emma through a portal-opening process, only to have a ginormous spider come bounding through the passage. After feigning teamwork for a bit, Gideon ultimately entraps Emma in some of the spun web, leaving her to be completely wrapped/suffocated by the spider’s silk. As that happens and Emma’s life wanes, inside the clock tower Gideon slashes open a portal for the Black Fairy to arrive — except that Rumple arrives at the mansion in the nick of time to save Emma, thus slamming shut Gideon’s portal.
While Emma and Snow quarrel with Rumple and Belle about just how irreparably evil his son turned out to be, Gideon discovers that “mother” in fact did make it through to this realm — and that “there is much to do,” she purrs, now that she has arrived.
It turns out, as revealed in flashbacks to Gideon’s time in the Black Fairy’s realm, that ever since appearing in Storybrooke a grown man, Gideon has been under his “mother’s” control. See, Gideon always fancied himself a hero, so when given the chance to right a past wrong by summoning the Savior to help him and the children enslaved in the mines, he grabbed it, only to realize it was a trap — and for his disloyalty, “mother” turned his BFF into a bug and stomped on him. The Black Fairy then took Gideon’s heart and compelled him to seek out and slay the Savior, so that she could cross over into our realm and do something horrible, presumably using the Black Fairy dust she has amassed since casting the first Dark Curse.
* Regina was working to undo the Charmings’ sleeping curse when she saw Henry’s eyes go milky as he furiously scribbled gibberish, in a trance-like state. Seeking out Isaac’s insight, the onetime Author revealed that Henry’s condition will only get worse unless they follow him out of town. Why? Because, Henry realizes, the storybook is nearing its final chapter, in which the Savior fights the final battle — “and no one wants to be around to see that,” Isaac warns, before putt-putting away to New York in his station wagon.
* Hook sought out Blackbeard and dangled re-ownership of the Jolly Roger in front of him — and in doing so duped the buccaneer into parting with a magic bean, to travel to Storybrooke where said galleon is docked. Except instead of landing in Storybrooke, they were dropped in Neverland, since Gideon has made it so that Hook can never find his way back. Blackbeard found a rowboat and skedaddled, leaving Hook to deal with the Lost Boys.
What did you think of the episode “Mother’s Little Helper”?