As we say in Spanish: se complica la cosa! Simply put, “the plot thickens.” The third episode of season 5 of Once Upon a Time is full of intrigue, heartbreak, and questionable alliances. Oh, and my new favorite bromance.
Spoilers ahead, dearies.
David and Mary Margaret worry about the fate of their daughter after hearing that she stole Happy’s pickaxe, which is supposed to cut through anything. David feels responsible for Emma and wants to know what she has up her sleeve that can’t be done by using her dark magic. Before he can investigate, the displaced King Arthur comes asking for aid. He tells David of a reliquary chest kept by the knights of the Round Table (which apparently made the journey with them). A magic bean, which could take citizens of Camelot home, is missing from it. David and Arthur join forces to locate the thief, who turns out to be Arthur’s servant Grif. Grif tells David that he wanted to hurt the king, but as soon as David has gone, we realize that Grif was acting upon Arthur’s orders.
At the Arthurian’s camp, David comes across a strange toadstool on the ground and takes it to Regina. Regina realizes that it matches a picture she saw in a book that came with them from Camelot. She had bookmarked the page with a question mark, and realizes that she must have been hoping to use the mushroom to communicate with the trapped Merlin.
Meanwhile, after realizing that Happy’s axe can’t cut through the stone in which Excalibur is embedded, Emma tries to seduce Hook aboard his ship by recreating their first date as much as she can. She even changes her appearance to look more like the Emma he fell in love with. She insists that they can still have a relationship, but Hook disagrees. In an emotional twist of fate, he tells her that he loved her. PAST TENSE.
— casually mutineering (@ImpalaMutineers) October 12, 2015
Later, Belle sees that the rose which symbolizes Rumple’s life has begun to restore itself. She rushes to the pawn shop, but Rumple is missing. Both he and Hook’s sword were swiped by Emma and taken to her basement room, where she hatches a new plan to draw Excalibur from the stone. Since the darkness left Rumple’s body, his heart is a clean slate—the perfect drawing board for Emma to create a flawless hero who can pull the sword free for her.
6 weeks earlier.
Mirroring the events in Storybrooke, our favorite dad and sheriff (David/Charming/Former Shepherd) teams up with King Arthur after Regina and Belle read about a mystical mushroom. Called the Crimson Crown, this magically guarded toadstool might be the answer to the gang’s dilemma (you remember, the whole thing about Regina pretending to be the Savior, hoping that no one will notice Emma is the dark one?). Arthur and David travel to the somewhat otherworldly forest of Brocéliande (another big nod toward traditional Arthurian legend), where they find that a rickety bridge is the only way to reach the Crimson Crown. David retrieves the mushroom, but is set upon by phantom knights who drag him under the water. Arthur rescues him, only to realize that the mushroom was lost in the water.
Upon their return to Camelot, Arthur knights David and gives him the seat at the Round Table that once belonged to his most trusted and noble ally—Lancelot. Everyone believes that Lancelot has perished but after the ceremony, Mary Margaret runs into someone who looks just like him. This very much alive Lancelot warns her to keep a weather eye out, as there is more than one dark force at work in Camelot.
Later, Arthur shows Queen Guinevere that he has the Crimson Crown in his possession. He didn’t enjoy lying to David, but is concerned about the well-being of his kingdom. He adds the toadstool to the reliquary chest, and ponders what his next move in locating the dagger of the Dark One will be.
So many questions and so few answers! Can Arthur be trusted? What does the future hold for Mr. Gold? HAS MY SHIP SUNK?
1.) We have no idea if Arthur can be trusted. Here’s the thing: he did some really shady stuff this episode. We know that he has ulterior motives when it comes to Storybrooke. He has Grif kill himself after the “confession” to David. He also has lied to David, both in Camelot and in Storybrooke. But at the same time, he seems like a genuinely concerned king. I propose that his grounds and rationale for his actions were once goodhearted. He has become obsessed with finding the missing piece of Excalibur, which for him, symbolizes his rule and the future of Camelot. This obsession is what leads him to be potentially untrustworthy. My gut instinct is to tread carefully. With some guidance, he could be a great addition to the gang. Also, I dig his bromance with David, even if he is a little bit of a liar. Sue me.
2.) Our favorite pawnbroker has awakened! I love the idea of him being a hero, but I loathe the idea of it being for Emma’s plan to extinguish the light. I was obviously wrong about Arthur being the one to pull the sword from the stone, but will Rumple be able to do it? Is this what will turn his life around? Maybe he and Regina can team up to bring the real Emma back. In any case, I hope Belle finds him soon cause I need that ship to be safe and happy.
3.) I theorize that Hook still loves Emma. He knows that a part of old Emma is still deep down in the heart of the Dark Swan, and by telling her that he no longer has feelings for her, he holds an element of sway over whatever emotions remain. Towards the end of the episode, he goes to Robin Hood for help. I believe that they will attempt to break into Emma’s basement. Although Hook is a reformed man who would do this for the good of the town, I know that he is really doing it to save Emma from herself.
Until next Sunday, dearies.
-The Collected Mutineer