This week’s Once Upon a Time was extra long and while it was better than most recent episodes, not a lot happened over the two hours.
First, let’s take a trip back in time to Arendelle. The Snow Queen rides through the night to hide the sorcerer’s hat. She freezes the box and buries it before traveling to the Enchanted Forest. She demands to see the sorcerer, but his apprentice says he doesn’t make deals with those who succumb to darkness. Ingrid then tells the apprentice she has the hat. He insists she tell him where it is, but she says the sorcerer will never see it again unless he gives her what she wants, which is happiness. She already has Elsa, but she is willing to wait to find the perfect third sister for them.
When Ingrid returns, Elsa is throwing a fancy dinner for her and Anna. Ingrid tells Elsa that Anna is trying to take away Elsa’s powers. She doesn’t believe it at first, but then Ingrid tells Elsa that Gerda is the one who trapped Ingrid in the urn, insisting that Anna is just like their mother.
Elsa goes to the dungeon to see Anna, who is delighted to see her. Anna explains how Ingrid has been lying, but Elsa lays into her until the guards walk away. Then Elsa drops the rouse and lets Anna out. Together, they plan to find the urn and trap Ingrid inside. With Kristoff’s help, they go searching for the urn. It doesn’t take them long to find the urn and a frozen Hans. Anna and Elsa sneak through the palace with the urn, the conversation turning to their dead parents. Anna confirms that their parents were trying to take Elsa’s powers away, but insists they would accept her the way she is if they could see her now.
Elsa puts Anna and the urn back in the dungeon to keep their plan a secret from Ingrid. Anna warns Elsa to stay away so she doesn’t get trapped in the urn. When Elsa leaves, Anna is instantly shackled and Ingrid appears, aware of their entire plan. She grinds up a shard of her magic mirror and casts a spell on Anna to make her see the worst in her loved ones.
Anna finds Elsa and unloads every negative thought she’s ever had about her. Elsa instantly knows Anna is under a spell. Elsa refuses to freeze Anna and gets sucked into the urn. Ingrid didn’t count on this development and is beyond pissed. She freezes all of Arendelle, including Anna and Kristoff.
Rumpelstiltskin visits Ingrid in her frozen palace and asks for the sorcerer’s hat. Ingrid hurries to the hat and is about to conjure the Dark One when the apprentice stops her. He tells her there is a perfect match to be her third sister, but she hasn’t been born yet. If she gives the sorcerer’s hat to the Dark One, she’ll never get her happy ending. If she gives it to the apprentice, she will find the third sister and be reunited with her niece. He noticeably doesn’t promise her a happy ending, but she accepts and sends her through a door to 1982 in our world.
Back in Storybrooke, Emma is sleeping in her car, but her powers are still fully charged. Henry finds her, but she warns him to stay away. She tells him not to worry, that she’ll figure out a way to control her powers, but she accidentally blasts him. He says he’s okay, but Emma is still shaky. He leaves and the Snow Queen shows up to tell Emma she just wants her to embrace who she is.
Regina and Robin Hood are getting dressed after a night of awesome “sleep.” Robin wants to make her breakfast, but she knows the other woman doesn’t get breakfast. They both wish they’d gotten together sooner, but the timing wasn’t right back then. Regina figures it would end badly, even without Marion in the picture. They look at the book together and agree they can’t have sex again, but go for another round before giving it up.
Emma goes to Gold for help with her powers. He has a spell that can take away all her magic. She’s clearly nervous, but wants him to do it. He tells her they need a remote spot and they plan to meet at sundown. They agree to keep it a secret and we see Gold throw the spell in the garbage as soon as Emma leaves.
The Charmings and crew can’t find Emma, but Henry reveals he already found her. He tells them she’s still trying to control her powers and wants them to stay away until she can. Elsa tells them she understands what Emma is going through. Elsa explains that Emma hurt Henry because she was trying so hard not to hurt him. Mary Margaret gets it (But do we?). Regina shows up and they rag on her for not getting back to them the night before, but even evil queens have needs. Regina doesn’t take their crap and provides them with the locator spell they asked for to find Emma. Right on cue, Emma calls to let them know she’s okay and is going to fix everything by getting rid of her magic. David and Mary Margaret seem okay with this, but Hook isn’t. He immediately leaves her a message asking her to call him right away.
We get another scene of Gold and Ingrid spilling more information to each other than they should. Can’t villains ever keep their evil plans to themselves? Gold says he’s going to take Emma’s powers and uses the remnants of the magic urn to trap Ingrid in a circle. He’s okay with betraying Emma and Ingrid.
Regina heals Henry’s injury. He wishes he had magic so he could help Emma, but he’s just ordinary. Regina reminds him that he has the Heart of the Truest Believer (groan). She tells him that Emma is a hero and heroes always win, but she sounds so sad when she says it.
David and Mary Margaret start to worry they’ve made a mistake by not stopping Emma. David points out being normal may be Emma’s best chance, but Elsa overhears. She takes the locator potion and Emma’s scarf before sneaking out. Regina asks why David isn’t out looking for Emma and is appalled they would allow Emma to strip herself of her powers (even the evil queen has morals). Mary Margaret agrees and that’s when they notice the locator potion is gone.
Hook storms into Gold’s shop, but no one is there. (If Belle’s not at the library or the shop, where the hell is she?) He calls Emma and leaves a message telling her not to listen to Gold, that he’s been lying to Belle and the spell he’s going to do will suck Emma in too. He even apologizes to her for helping Gold, even though he’d been forced into helping. That’s when he notices the map and chases after them.
Ingrid is trying to break free of the circle and uses her magic mirror to keep an eye on Emma. Emma’s powers are still acting up when she swerves off the road to avoid hitting Ingrid. Ingrid warns Emma that Gold would kill her to get what he wants. Of course, it’s just an astral projection and Ingrid is still trapped in the circle. Emma continues on to Gold, leaving her phone in the car because even though she’s a strong female character, sometimes Emma is still just a dumb bitch.
The Charmings and crew find Emma’s abandoned car and continue looking for her. Regina and Mary Margaret have what passes for a heart to heart with them about Regina’s potential happy ending with Robin Hood. Regina doubts it will work out, but Mary Margaret is always ranting about having hope.
Will Scarlett likes to spike his coffee… a lot. Robin sits down and takes the cup from. He shows will the book he’s stolen and says Regina needs their help. Will suggests the library. Together, they break into the already open library. After looking through several books, including The Cat in the Hat, Robin finds a page that catches his interest. He immediately calls Regina.
Gold activates the sorcerer’s hat just as Emma approaches. Gold appears behind her and tells her all she has to do is step through the door (to her demise just beyond). Emma tells him Ingrid warned her he was trying to hurt her. She asks if Gold would walk through the door. He admits he wouldn’t because he makes bad choices, but Emma always does the right thing.
Hook shows up outside, but Gold ties him up with his magic. Gold needs the heart of someone who knew him before he became the Dark One to complete the spell that will unbind him from the dagger. He rips Hook’s heart out of his chest and tells him he’ll make him his puppet.
Elsa follows the scarf to Emma and tries to talk her out of opening the door. She tells her she can’t be saved by the love of others, that she has to love herself in order to control her powers. Emma takes Elsa’s hand and all is right again. Hook kisses Emma before going back for the box and pocketing it.
Regina meets Robin at the library and sees the illustration of them about to kiss in the pub on the night they should have met. It proves their fate could have gone a different way, that she isn’t inherently meant to suffer. When Regina asks where he found it he says it appeared in his satchel like magic. They share a passionate kiss.
Ingrid finally breaks free of the circle and takes the three ribbons she and her sisters wore with her.
Emma is reunited with her family. They tell her they don’t want her to change, they love her the way she is. To prove she can control her powers, Emma creates a fireworks display for their viewing pleasure. Suddenly, Emma and Elsa notice they have ribbons around their wrists that they can’t get off. They immediately know where they came from.
Gold asks Ingrid if she had a hand in saving Emma, but we know she had very little to do with it. She reveals the ribbons bond the three of them when they’ve all accepted their powers. She threatens to destroy Gold and from her tone, we know she can do it. She smashes the mirror and a dark cloud gathers behind her.
OUAT is off next week, so you’ll just have to wait to find out what the Snow Queen has brewing!