Sunday, January 20, 2013

Once Upon a Time 2.11: "The Outsider"

“This is my journey, Belle. This is my journey and it’s something I have to do on my own.”
- Rumpelstiltskin

We begin this week at the town line at night. Rumple is testing a theory and he’s using Smee as his guinea pig. We learn that Smee’s hat was made by his granny when he was little and so it has sentimental value. This appears to be the key because Rumple pours a potion on it and boots our little betrayer over the line. And he retains his memory. The next day, we find the dwarves, Granny, Red, Marco and the Charming clan having a small funeral service for Archie. Snow gives a sweet eulogy and Marco places Archie’s umbrella by the headstone. In reality, they wouldn’t have a headstone that fast. Anyway, we cut to Archie being sort of tortured by Hook. Hook asks about the dagger that can steal Rumple’s power but Archie knows nothing about it. He does however, under duress, spill Rumple’s other weakness. We find Belle showing up Mr. Gold’s shop to get the good news about the potion. Unfortunately, she can’t go with Rumple as he only has enough potion for one object (Bae’s shawl). And in our first flashback of the episode, we find Belle in the tavern the day after she gave Dreamy advice on love. There’s a hunting party going after a fearsome creature called the yaoguai and Dreamy encourages Belle to join up. She does and Dreamy gives her a little pouch of fairy dust just in case. Back in Storybrooke, we see Hook implementing his latest scheme. He corners Belle in the library but she manages to lock herself in the elevator and calls Rumple. The connection sucks but it’s enough to spur our imp to action.

Rumple manages to free Belle from the elevator and shares an abbreviated version of his history with Hook, including that Milah died. Of course he leaves out the bit where he crushed her heart but yeah, that’s not surprising. They get back to the shop to find that Hook was just creating a distraction so Smee could slip in and grab the shawl. Meanwhile, in the fairytale land that was, Belle tells the rather gruff guys she’s traveling with that the yaoguai can be found near the lake. With that information, they boot her off the wagon and leave her with her books on the road. She’s not too upset since she faked the translation of her book so she could have some heroics of her own. She tracks the creature within a day and is about to try and take it on when she steps on a twig, rousing the beast. She’s about to be charbroiled when Mulan steps in scares the thing away. Belle offers to help find it again but Mulan is too crabby about missing her shot at killing the thing. Over at Mary Margaret’s loft, Emma tries to entice Henry to eat something but she’s not having much luck. Snow tries to reassure her but Grumpy interrupts with a whine that they want to go home. And they’re worried about someone from the outside world discovering who and what they are. If only they knew.

Back at the shop, Rumple is throwing a hissy fit over the shawl being stolen. Belle tries to calm him down by offering her help but he kind of snaps at her that she can’t help him because she’s never dealt with a pirate. After getting crabby he just gets stupid and gives her a loaded gun. Because handing an untrained civilian a dangerous firearm is a fantastic idea. Dumbass. As Rumple seeks out Smee for answers, Belle takes off to the library to clean up. She discovers a piece of rope from where Hook fell and figures out he came to Storybrooke on his ship. With a bit of cleverness, she locates the ship. Back in the fairytale land that was, she’s having some trouble with the guys that ditched her earlier. Obviously, the yaoguai wasn’t at the lake. Mulan steps in and whoops their butts and the ladies decide to team up. Belle will track the creature and Mulan will kill it (even with a wounded leg). Rumple finds Smee trying to sneak out of town and he gets turned into a rat for crossing the Dark One.

Belle sneaks down into the belly of the ship and frees Archie. I have to say I was really glad they didn’t drag the “Archie’s dead” plotline out for long. It would have just been so stupid. I understand it served a purpose but it really was kind of dumb. In the meantime, Henry is still not coping with Archie’s supposed passing. He calls Archie’s office number just to hear the voice mail message. Emma manages to cheer him up a little by bringing Pongo over (she and Marco decided to give the dog to Henry). This however, poses something of a logistics problem. Four people and a big dog in a little loft just won’t work. So the Charmings are going to look for a bigger house. Back on the ship, Belle is looking for the shawl when Hook appears with it. He grabs the gun she’s left sitting on a chest (see, I’m telling stupid thing to do) and is threatening her. Belle says she’s not afraid of him and she’s not leaving without the shawl. We cut to her and Mulan tracking the beast. Mulan’s leg is worse so it’s up to Belle to slay the beast. She gets a little pep talk from Mulan and it seems to spur her forward in the present. She’s disbelieving when Hook fills her in on the rest of the tale of Milah. But she keeps him talking long enough to get herself into a position where she conks him on the head with a beam and snags the shawl.

Unfortunately, he knows the ship like the back of his hook. He’s about to get all smarmy pirate on her again when Rumple shows up and commences a pretty serious beat down. That man is dangerous with a cane. I guess when it comes to Belle he really just loses it easily. Belle begs him to stop but he’s pretty incensed. Hook sort of begs for death so he can be with Milah again and this just spurs Rumple further to kill Hook. But Belle prevails in the end and leads him away from a bloodied Hook. In the fairytale land that was, Belle confronts the yaoguai and with some quick thinking and fairy dust reveals it to be Prince Phillip. She leads him back to Mulan and I guess we know how their journey to find Aurora began.

At Granny’s, Snow and Charming are house hunting but not agreeing on anything. Charming realized he doesn’t want to die in Storybrooke. But Snow doesn’t want to go back, since there’s nothing to go back to. It seems they need to figure out their priorities and what they want. We have a sort of light moment between Emma and Henry where he’s sketching out a blueprint for how they can change the loft once Snow and Charming move out. They don’t far (just talking about the armory) when Archie shows up and officially clears Regina’s name. That night, Rumple and Belle head to the town line. Rumple pours the potion on the shawl and crosses over without issue. He’s about to say goodbye to Belle when Hook shows up and shoots Belle, causing her to fall across the town line unprotected. Rumple is enraged by Hook’s actions and is about to firebomb the crap out of our sexier-than-Johnny-Depp pirate when a car with Pennsylvania plates comes creaming down the road. Rumple manages to throw himself and Belle clear of the path but Hook gets hit and the car crashes. It seems an outsider has finally found their way to our sleepy little town.

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