What is Emma willing to do to get what she needs to “snuff” out the light? The answer, as seen in this episode of Once Upon a Time, “Siege Perilous,” is quite a bit.
Meanwhile, not everything is as it seems when it comes to the Camelot crowd, as a certain returning character has a warning for one of the Storybrooke residents in the missing six weeks, and there’s more to some missing items in the present than David knows.
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It’s the Beginning of a Beautiful Bromance…
Team Savior (Regina, Mary Margaret, David, Emma and Belle) manage to find a way to possibly communicate with Merlin, who may be the tree or just surrounded by one, as far as they can tell. All they need is a special toadstool, the Crimson Crown, and who better to set off on a quest to find one but David and Arthur, with a torch from the unquenchable flame to help them make their way?
Along the way, they bro-bond over their “common” beginnings — Arthur “as peasant as they come” and David the shepherd — and their strong wives. When they find the toadstool, all that stands in their way is a bridge that looks like it’s one pebble landing on it the wrong way from falling apart, and of course David is the one who makes the trip across, tripping as he goes and ignorant of what lies in the water — until he makes his way back across once he has what they need.
It wouldn’t be a quest for a magical item that could help communicate across magical barriers without a fight with phantom knights that ends with David being dragged underwater, with Arthur pulling David to the surface and helping him get back to dry land. However, once there, they discover the toadstool is no longer in David’s bag.
Before they set out on their quest, Arthur corrects David’s assumption that the seat that is different from the others at the roundtable is his. It belonged to the knight with the purest of hearts, who went on the most sacred of quests, the man he trusted more than a brother until he betrayed him, aka Lancelot. “All of you are kind of legends,” David says to explain why he knows the story of this love triangle. When Arthur asks how his (former) friend is, David has to deliver the bad news that he’s, well, dead.
…Or is he? Unsurprisingly, given the bromance developing between them and mention of filling Percival’s empty seat, upon returning (empty-handed) from the quest, David becomes a knight of the roundtable in Camelot, with Arthur directing him to Lancelot’s empty seat rather than Percival’s. However, when Mary Margaret steps into the hall during the ceremony to calm a crying Neal, she’s surprised to see Lancelot lurking. “There is a terrible villain in Camelot” (other than the Dark One), he warns her: “Arthur.” Trust him (even though how he’s even there is a “long story,” he doesn’t tell her anything about it yet) that “Camelot is not what it seems.”
She should listen to Lancelot (and warn the others) because later, Guinevere joins Arthur at the roundtable as he takes out the toadstool that was supposedly lost to add to the reliquary, which holds the magic relics collected by the knights. While it brought him no pleasure to lie to someone he sees as a good and noble man, he must think of his kingdom first.
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She Loves Him…
“I know Dopey’s a tree” is one of those things that can only be said on Once Upon a Time. Emma interrupts the dwarves’ mining to pick up something she needs: Happy’s pickax. As she’s learned, “If your name is on something, hold onto it,” she tells him when he protests. However, when she tries to use the pickax to get Excalibur, it breaks. They need a hero to pull the sword from the stone, and that hero is not Emma. They both know who it is.
Who has the more complicated love life right now, Hook or Robin Hood? Well, when it comes to the baby, part of Robin is happy, he admits to the pirate after showing him a sonogram (or, as he calls it, “a picture from up inside Zelena”), but he doesn’t want Regina to know in case she misconstrues his feelings. On the other hand, Emma’s inviting Hook to his ship for a lunch like they used to have, complete with the Dark Swan taking on a familiar “Emma” look when it comes to their relationship. “You know you can trust me,” she tells him.
…She Loves Him Not?
It’s not really a question of how Emma feels about Hook right not, but more so what she’s willing to do and whose feelings she’s willing to exploit to get what she wants. “I’m different. I’m better,” she insists. “I used to be scared and judgmental and closed off. … Now I see things clearly.” But Hook’s not exactly jumping for joy at the idea of being in a relationship with a Dark One, and he knows she needs something. Having slyly taken his sword from him, she tells him she just need his trust and asks if he loves her. If he says he doesn’t, she’ll let him go. “I loved you,” he tells her and steps away. And she leaves as only the Dark One can.
To Belle’s surprise, her rose tells her that Mr. Gold is waking up, but when she returns to his shop, he’s not there. That’s because Emma has him, and the sword she took from Hook is the last piece of a healing spell to wake him, something that touched him when he was still a man and not yet the Dark One. So she wakes him up, and his heart is a blank slate. She can make him into a hero, “the purest who’s ever lived,” she explains, looking over to the Dark One/Excalibur in the stone. “And then I have a job for you.”
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The One Where a King Who Rides Horses is a Pretty Good Driver
When items (including, as Arthur tells David, a magic bean that can take his people home in an instant) go missing from Arthur’s reliquary in the Camelot camp, David employs a trick I’m certain I’ve seen used before in more than one procedural drama. He tells the camp that the Chalice of Vengeance (aka a souvenir from Doc’s birthday party) will point him in the direction of the thief, and Grif, Arthur’s squire, goes running immediately. Considering this is all part of David’s plan, I’m surprised he doesn’t have someone waiting in the back of the camp to stop him, but I suppose if he did, then what happens next can’t transpire.
Grif rides off on a horse, and David and Arthur take chase in a Ford pickup. David offers Arthur a one-sentence driving lesson to climb into the back, but he doesn’t tell Grif they’re about to engage in a bit of jousting, so it’s easily David 1, Grif 0, as he knocks the squire off his horse. Once back in the camp, where Grif is looking surprisingly well for someone who was just hit in the chest and knocked off a horse, the squire says that he was tired of how he was being treated, how they were all being treated and wanted to hurt the King. But there was no magic bean. “I’m always betrayed by those closest to me,” Arthur laments to David as they step outside, but by this point, I’m starting to think it’s his fault. Maybe the bean was removed in the six weeks they don’t remember, the King suggests.
David then spots the toadstool on the ground and recognizes it. See, earlier, Regina came across the page in one of Merlin’s books that made the trip from Camelot and recognized the question mark drawn on a piece of paper to mark the page as her handwriting. (Apparently, no one else writes a question mark like she does?) When he brings the toadstool to Regina and Mary Margaret, Regina realizes they must have been trying to communicate with Merlin. And they can use it now.
Uh, So About Trusting Arthur…
Well, this guy would make a great cult leader. It’s like Grif is one of his followers as Arthur visits the squire in his cell in the sheriff’s station in Storybrooke. All Grif did is what Arthur asked. Oh, and there is no magic bean. But since they can’t get back home, Arthur has a new plan: make a new Camelot in Storybrooke. Grif is willing to do anything for his kingdom, just as Arthur hoped because, see, he needs him to drink this poison.
It’s too risky for Arthur to have him around people who can use magic to make him talk. This is even better than sitting at the roundtable, the King explains/manipulates. It’s “a chance to die in service of Camelot. Your death will be the cornerstone of a great new kingdom.” And so Grif drinks the poison and dies.
Once Upon a Time season 5 airs Sundays at 8pm on ABC.
(Image courtesy of ABC)