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Once Upon a Time “Quiet Minds” 

Photo Credit: ABC/Katie Yu
Photo Credit: ABC/Katie Yu

The episode paid off in a lot of ways this week, but left us guessing in several others. It would be nice to have a better idea of what the Wicked Witch is after, yet the waiting is such sweet torment that I’m reluctant to see it end. Hopefully the payoff is worth the wait. 

We are introduced to Lumiere, the candlestick from Beauty and the Beast, in what is apparently his first meeting with Belle. It seems odd that she wouldn’t have run across him before, but that incongruity is soon addressed when it’s revealed that the Wicked Witch has conscripted him to lead Belle and Neal down her carefully laid path to the Dark One’s resurrection. The trap is beautifully constructed, neither Neal nor Belle realize they are being used until Belle catches Lumiere in the lie of his alleged two hundred years in the library. By that point Neal is too far down the road of promises and dreams to turn back, and he is willing to do anything to get his father back regardless of the consequences. Of course, we are well aware of the price to be paid for a life. The subject has come up several times in the past and the answer has remained firmly the same – a life can only be purchased at the cost of another life.

It’s fascinating that upon realizing he has been brought back at the cost of his son, Rumple would choose to save Neal’s life by giving up control of his dagger. This goes against everything we know about his destiny to fail his child by always putting his own desires first, and it speaks volumes to the lessons he learned about paternal love in the early half of the season. I’m curious to see if he comes to regret the decision in the near future, it looks as though that sacrifice has been the only thing protecting him from the Wicked Witch’s plans.

Photo Credit: ABC/Katie Yu
Photo Credit: ABC/Katie Yu

As for Zelena, her plans seem more and more convoluted as time goes on. No doubt the orange juice she fed Mary Margaret has completed some pivotal step in her master plan, she was far too happy to see it swallowed without complaint. And now that she has full control of the Dark One, it will be much harder to stop her from whatever her next steps might be. Things look dire for the denizens of Storybrook, but now that Zelena’s identity as the Wicked Witch has been revealed, with luck perhaps our heroes can create some strategy to stop her. 

After seeing Regina and Robin Hood work together to get into the castle, it’s fun to watch them working together again this week with no clear memory of having done it before. It really is a charming dynamic and I can’t wait to see more, particularly now that Regina has seen the tattoo on his wrist. Her turning her back and walking away with no explanation as to why was a delight to watch and I’m eager to see where she chooses to take the relationship. Or more accurately, where HE might choose to take it.

Although there were a lot of exceptional moments this week, the one standout moment of goodness is Emma telling Henry that his father has died. It was a heart-wrenching yet beautiful moment that feels all the more poignant knowing that Henry can’t remember Neal at all. That we have seen the reconciliation between Emma and Neal makes his loss so much dearer, and knowing that this Henry, with no Storybrook memories, has only ever heard about the abandonment is an extra knife-edge cutting into the heart.

Once Upon A Time airs Sundays at 8/7c on ABC.

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