What was Regina’s beef with Mr. Gold/Rumpelstiltskin this episode? What motivated her to give Belle false memories and turn her into Lacey? Was it because she believed he knew about how Henry was his grandson from the very start? Because this time, I think he was telling the truth, and he really didn’t have a clue. (He certainly might have known all about who Emma was, but since I doubt Emma would have shared the information about who the biological father was during her pregnancy, its doubtful Gold knew, either.) Seriously, I thought Regina’s tirade was against Mary Margret/Snow. Why is she suddenly so ticked at Gold? Did I have a blackout in which Gold ran over Regina’s pet cat or something? Was her grievance due to the fact that Gold seemed to have a way back into the fold due to him being Henry’s grandfather when she didn’t seem to have one herself? Her line of ‘they won't accept you, no matter what you do’ does seem to indicate that. But again, Regina. They were starting to accept you, but then you went and listened to Cora and went all corrupt again. Of course they’re going to be leery of you. Emma even points that out to you at one point in this episode. But how exactly was she able to figure out Emma was keeping Anton’s bean field a secret? What was it about her saying ‘be the person Henry wants you to be before you lose him for good’ that tipped her off? There was nothing in that statement that stuck out to me. I just saw this as Emma saying Henry wouldn’t want anything to do with her if she didn’t get her act together. But I guess the writers had to figure out some way to make sure Regina found out about the bean field, so they had her hear a hidden meaning in what Emma said.
I did enjoy the Enchanted Forest flashback. As much as I enjoyed seeing the one in ‘Skin Deep,’ watching this made the progression between Rumpelstiltskin and Belle more believable. Dark One Rumpelstiltskin had been… how should I phrase this? … Off his rocker for who knows how many years. While I won’t deny that True Love can do wonders for a person, I still don’t think it could turn someone like Dark One Rumpelstiltskin around straight away. Of course the metamorphosis would be a slow one. But even at this early stage, there were hints, such as him refusing to allow the Sheriff of Nottingham ‘borrow’ Belle. Already protective of your woman, I see. And him choosing to spare Robin when he sees Marion is pregnant? Anyone else think Belle asking him if he could leave a child fatherless made him think of his own son?
Oh, and that final shot of Mr. Gold and ‘Lacey?’ That just…. I have no words for that. Seriously, what happened after the cutaway? Did Gold beat that guy to death? Is he dead? Dang, Gold. I get that you’re undoubtedly miffed at this guy, particularly since he is the Storybrooke counterpart of the Sheriff of Nottingham, and he is once again focused on Belle/Lacey. But still! Anger management, guy! In a related story, Emma, aren’t you supposed to be the town Sheriff? Granted you probably have your hands full with figuring out the mystery of who August was trying to warn you about, but surely someone came across that guy’s beaten up body the next morning, unless Gold did indeed kill him and zapped the corpse into oblivion afterwards. Even then, there probably would be a missing person’s report filed. Why do we never see you address this?
While I know it was only a dream sequence and didn’t actually happen, it was an interesting twist that the item Henry chose from Gold’s shop was a magic wand. Especially since it was only a few episodes ago that he was trying to eliminate magic from Storybrooke.
A couple nitpicks about this episode. First off, the introduction to Robin Hood. That’s clearly not the same actor who plays him next season. Considering how he reenters the story in the first episode of season 3, I don’t think the writers didn’t know he would be coming back before too long when they wrote this episode. I could be wrong, of course, but I doubt it. So, did the original actor just run into a scheduling conflict and needed to be replaced? Secondly, David/Charming and Mary Margret/Snow’s plan to use the beans Anton and the dwarfs have been growing to make a portal back to the Enchanted Forest. Sounds a bit to me like they’re trying to run away from their problems. Never a good idea, in my opinion. Besides, wasn’t Snow opposed to this idea last episode? What changed her mind?
Greg and Tamara are still up to no good, but now they’re planning to pull Hook into their plan. At first, I was wondering how Tamara managed to capture him to begin with, but then I remembered that in the last episode, Neal was mentioning that Tamera had gone into the storage room back at his apartment in New York and, according to her, Hook wasn’t there. Obviously, Tamara had been lying and had gotten her hands on him then, but the question is, how long had he been locked in that storage closet before Tamara discovered him? I’m fairly certain a few days had passed between Hook ambushing Rumple and company in New York and Tamara arriving in Storybrooke. Did she find him immediately after they commandeered the Jolly Roger to bring the dying Mr. Gold back to Storybrooke? Or was he stuck in there for a few days? I’m going with the former, as we are talking about a professional pirate. I’m confident he could figure out a locked door, and as we saw in the ‘In the Name of the Brother’ deleted scene, he is able to break out of handcuffs if he really wants to. Meaning Tamara has been keeping him bound and gagged in the back of that trailer for some time. Please tell me she gave that man the occasional cheeseburger. Or at least gave him some water to drink.