‘Once Upon A Time: The Stranger’ – Recap

Posted Monday, April 30th, 2012 05:45 pm GMT -4 by 0

Last week on ‘Once Upon a Time’, we took a deeper look into the story of Rumplestiltskin. We saw how he lost his son, and almost a reunion in Real Time. Alas, the reunion was brief, as it turned out August wasn’t his son. It looks like this week we are going to see more of the story of August, who he is and what he is doing in Storybrooke. With this being the last episode before the season finale, lets hope they start to set up for something to keep us hooked for a second season!

Story Time

Geppetto - Once Upon A Time - The Stranger episodePinocchio and Geppetto fight the storm on the raft in the ocean. The whale passes them, tilting their raft. Geppetto tells him to take the life jacket, but Pinocchio refuses, jumping in the water and tells him to save himself. Geppetto washes up on shore the next morning, happy that Pinocchio saved him. Pinocchio lies face down in the water not far away. Geppetto weeps at the loss of his son. The Blue Fairy appears, saying he can still save his son. She waves her wand and turns him into a real boy. Blue Fairy wishes them well, to live their life as a family. She tells them, “Remember Pinocchio, remain brave, truthful and unselfish, so long as you do that you will always remain a real boy.”

Pinocchio paints while Geppetto gives him advice while fixing a clock. Jiminey Cricket is tied up inside of the clock. Jiminey says its okay. The Blue Fairy appears behind him, but tells Pinocchio that she is not here for him. Pinocchio and Jiminey leave, giving The Blue Fairy and Geppetto privacy. She tells him that the Evil Queen is beginning a curse, but Geppetto is able to help them. If Geppetto can fashion a vessel for the baby of Snow White, used from the enchanted tree, he can save them all.

The Blue Fairy takes them to the tree, where Geppetto excitedly says that he can build a beautiful wardrobe from the tree. It is the last enchanted tree in the realm. The Blue Fairy tells him the wardrobe will be built for two, Snow White and Prince Charming. Geppetto refuses, tells him that he will only create the wardrobe if Pinocchio can go through too. Jiminey fights with him, telling him that he cannot bargain with the Blue Fairy. But he eventually wins, and we are brought back to the first episode with the Council. The Blue Fairy tells the council that there will be room for only one in the wardrobe. Geppetto looks down at Pinocchio with a caring look.

Geppetto - Once Upon A Time - The Stranger episodeSnow gives birth to Emma. The Blue Fairy tells Geppetto that Pinocchio cannot go. Geppetto asks what will happen to Pinocchio, but The Blue Fairy tells him that there is no time. Snow must go with Emma, and to tell her everything that she told him before flying away. Pinocchio goes to tell Snow, but Geppetto stops him. Pinocchio and Jiminey argue with him, but Geppetto tells him that sometimes you need to lie to protect the ones you love. So Pinocchio goes into the wardrobe. Jiminey tells him to remain brave, truthful and unselfish. Geppetto tells him that he must rescue them, tell Emma to believe. He says when he saves them, he will look to Pinocchio with pride. His son will be a great man. Geppetto then locks Pinocchio in the wardrobe, after a shake Pinocchio is gone.

Pinocchio appears in a tree. He is frightened of an airplane that flies by. After a sudden flash, all of his history hits him, knocking him to the ground. He regains conciousness, when suddenly a baby appears in the trunk of the tree he just came from. Inside, baby Emma cries. Pinocchio tries to quiet Emma.

In Boston, Pinocchio looks over baby Emma, trying to quiet her as she cries in the foster home. He makes faces at her, which gets her to quiet down. He gets scolded by the man of the house for using the tools to reinforce Emma’s crib. One of the kids comes by with a wad of cash stolen from the sock drawer. It is enough to buy bus tickets for everyone. Emma wouldn’t be able to come, even though Pinocchio begs. The child leaves, but Pinocchio stops him. He apologizes to Emma and then leaves with the kid.

Real Time

Emma and August - Once Upon A Time - The Stranger episodeAugust installs a new padlock on the door of Mary and Emma’s apartment. Mary is going back to work in the school. Emma asks Mary if they should worry about her going back to school so quickly, but Mary is concerned that Emma is the one to be worried about. Emma has hired Mr. Gold to help build a case against Regina to win Henry. Henry radios Emma about an Operation Cobra Emergency. Tells her to meet him at Granny’s. August follows Emma, telling her that a custody battle won’t accomplish anything. Tells her to look at the big picture to get Regina. Tries to convince her to take a day off so he can show her how exactly to beat her. She declines.

At Granny’s, Henry informs Emma that someone changed the book. No one knows where the book is kept so they wonder how that is possible. There was a story that was added. The story is about Pinocchio, but there is no ending. There’s more to the story then they think. Later, we are shown August in his room, looking at his phone, dialing out to Mr. Gold. He wants to meet with him regarding Emma. “There is a problem.” August starts to fall as he leaves, showing his leg turning into wood.

Mary looks upon the school happily, when Regina walks up to her. She asks where Henry is, but Mary retaliates with anger. She does tell Regina that she forgives her. That even though she put her through hell that she forgives her and that she  believes Regina must be so lonely that her only happiness comes from making others miserable. Regina tells Henry that she is going to transfer him out of Mary’s class, but Henry angrily shuts her down. He tells her that she framed Mary, even though she protests he goes on to tell her that she is the Evil Queen and that Snow White will have her happy ending. Henry ends things with “Good will win.”

August goes in to Mr. Gold’s shop, where Mr. Gold is talking with Geppetto. August immediately recognizes him, but does not say anything. Mr. Gold questions why August doesn’t say anything to him when he leaves, but August doesn’t reply. August tells him that Emma is too focused on getting custody of Henry, needing Mr. Gold to push Emma towards him so that he can get her to believe in the curse. Mr. Gold comments on his history, but tells him that he will give her a gentle nudge towards August.

Emma goes to see Mr. Gold about Regina, but Mr. Gold does not take her case. He tells her he knows how to pick his battles, this will not be one of them. Emma walks out, goes to see August. She tells him that she is just about out of options, and that he can show her the big picture.

David locks the shelter, eyeing Regina across the street struggling with her car. Regina says it won’t start just adding to her day. David offers her a ride home. At first she refuses, but eventually accepts. When they arrive at her house she offers him dinner. He declines, saying that he needs to be up early for work the next day. Regina picks up a blank notecard, stating Henry has left a note saying that he is having dinner with Archie after his session instead of coming home. Feeling guilty, David decides to stay.

August and Emma ride out to the forest, Emma questions where they are going. He tells her that they are going on a trip. She asks him what story, and he responds with “Mine.”

Regina and David - Once Upon A Time - The Stranger episodeDavid and Regina eat their dinner together. He compliments her lasagna, and takes her dishes. She thanks him for his kindness. He thanks her for taking care of him. She tells him the story of how she found him, after a late night of work remembering that she left her phone at the office. She turned around to get the phone, finding him on the side of the road. He was as cold as ice, if it was 10 minutes later it would have been too late. Regina moves in to kiss him but he rejects her, telling her things are great as it is. He thanks her again for dinner before leaving. Regina stares at the mirror in the hallway before smashing it with her glass.

Emma and August ride late into the night to a diner on the side of a road. Emma, angrily, asks what are they doing there. “You’ve been here before. This is the diner you were brought to when you were found” He tells her that he was the 7 year old boy that found her. “This is my story, and your story.” Emma questions why they are in the woods. He tells her this is where he found her. Emma doesn’t believe him, because she was found on the side of the road. August shows her the tree where they both came into the world. August tells her to believe that he is Pinocchio. She figures out that he edited Henry’s book, but it ends with her believing. She tells him that is not going to happen. While chasing after her, he collapses. August tells her where he was when he found out that she stayed in Storybrooke. He shows Emma his wooden leg, but it turns back to normal when we see it through Emma’s view. At least by her view, it is still normal by her eyesight. But he still sees the wooden leg. “You don’t want to believe. After everything you’ve seen, how can you not believe?” Emma and August fight. Emma doesn’t want the responsibility. He tells her, “You’re our only hope.” She tells him, “Then you’re all screwed.”

August and Emma - Once Upon A Time - The Stranger episodeAugust walks past Geppetto’s place, helping him with a clock that is jammed. He tells him his father told him how to fix it when he was a child. Geppetto tells him his father would be proud, but he tells him that he’s disappointed his father. Geppetto tells him that if he is trying to fix the broken promise, that if he had a son that would be good enough for him. August asks if he would be interested in taking on an assistant. Geppetto tells hims he wouldn’t be able to pay to which August replies, “That’s okay, I just feel like fixing things.” Geppetto brings him into his workshop.

Emma radios Henry there is a code red. She says its not an Operation Cobra emergency but needs to talk to him about them. Emma asks him if he wants to get away from Regina. Henry says of course. Emma tells him to buckle up, that they are leaving Storybrooke.

I find it interesting that of the characters to choose August to be, I think the Pinocchio arc is pretty interesting. I was absolutely convinced that August was a narrator. I’m glad to be proven wrong.

I have a genuine fear of a rushed ending happening next week. With the amount of filler this season, I worry that things are going to end too quickly for our dear families in Storybrooke. What do you think of the Pinocchio arc? What are your thoughts for next week?

If you missed the previous episode be sure to read our ‘Once Upon A Time: The Return’ recap to catch up.

  • Kevin

    Once upon A Time equals the last episode of Lost. Storybrooke equals the purgatory the cast of Lost was in where they lost their memories and had to remember who they really were. It is understandable that the writers are repeating the formula of Lost, but it is amazing that they have decided to take the formula of a single episode and turn it into an entire series. The formula is working so far, but can they stretch it out across several sasons?