First let me apologize for the late posting. I was away and unable to post after this episode aired, but here it is now, a summary and discussion of season seven, episode four. I prefer to think of it as the Halloween episode.
It was so exciting to have an episode that took place on Halloween. Fans were treated to seeing their favorite characters in costumes throughout the time in Seattle. Though the Halloween theme did not play directly into the storylines for the episode the holiday made for an exciting backdrop change. As well as the Halloween theme viewers were also treated to the guest appearance of a fan favorite character, Belle. It had been announced at the end of season six that Belle was among many of the original cast members who would not be returning for the new season. Of course many of the fans were disappointed. Her love story with the infamous Rumpelstiltskin captivated viewers from early on in the show. Their love story followed the lines of the fairytale, Beauty and the Beast. Episode four brought back the beautiful, Emilie De Ravin to reprise her role as Belle and give the story of Rumple and Belle some closure.
As usual there will be spoilers ahead for events from season six and season seven so please be aware as you read on.
Rumple and Belle's, or better known as Rumbelle, story ended in season six with a bit of a reunion for the couple as they had been through a separation after the birth of their son. Their newborn son had gone through a transformation himself and returned to them after being kidnapped only days after being born as a full-grown man. The effects of living in a town of story book characters and magic. Their son, Gideon, had been kidnapped by the Dark Fairy and was trained in the ways of evil and dark magic. While away with the Dark Fairy, time moved differently causing him to age quickly. When he was properly trained and old enough, he was sent on a mission to return to Storybrooke and kill the savior, Emma Swan, for his capture, the Dark Fairy. Upon learning that their son had returned to the town a full-grown man with dark magic, Rumple and Belle decided they needed to help rescue their son and teach him that a life of darkness would get him nothing but an empty heart, though Belle and Rumple had different views on the best way to help their son causing them to remain at odds throughout most of the seasons wrap up. It was not until the season finale when, with the help of their friends and Emma Swan they were able to defeat the Dark Fairy and save their son from her clutches that the couple finally reunited. The wrongs they had recently experienced were set right once again when adult Gideon was transformed back into an infant. Which for fans was not a new concept as they had seen something similar happen to the character of August, leaving season six to end with the couple ready to raise their son together as they had always planned.
At the announcement of De Ravin's departure from the show, fans wondered what that would mean for Rumple. Season seven started off with the familiar face of Robert Carlyle, the actor who portrays the character of Rumpelstiltskin, though in season seven he carried the new name of Weaver. Much like the few remaining cast members from the first six seasons, the classic Once Upon A Time characters were given a makeover. The former pawn shop owner of Storybrooke now works in the city of Seattle as a detective.
Other than his name and occupation, not much was given on the character formally known as Rumple until episode four. This episode focused on his story, or rather filling in the gaps of his story. The episode opened in the quiet town of Storybooke with Rumple and Belle preparing to throw Gideon his first birthday party. The couple remark on the change the town has undergone since peace had found it's way to everyone living there. It was in that moment Rumple decided to give his gift for his family to Belle.
Staying within the characteristics of the famous character, Belle has always wanted to see the world. She has always wanted to visit new places and learn about new things. She wishes to live a life beyond her books. Which is exactly how she ended up entangling herself with Rumpelstiltskin in the first place. Though due to various circumstances and curses Belle was never able to act on her wishes. Since finding love with Rumple she did not mind very much. Her dreams had changed over time, but Rumple still wanted to give her the life she had always dreamed of, so on their son's birthday he gave her an empty photo album and told her that he wants them to fill it with all the adventures they share together. He explains that there is nothing keeping them in Storybrooke anymore.
The touching moment was quickly forgotten as viewers were brought to present day Seattle, with Weaver, or rather Rumple, talking to the neighborhood's shot caller, Victoria Bealfrey. Victoria had been allegedly attacked by one of Weaver's informants. Viewers know the informant to be Alice of Wonderland, as she was introduced in the season premiere. Though Victoria went and did some digging of her own to discover that the informant known as Tilly is meant to be on medication but has not been taking it. Victoria tasked Weaver with the job of getting Tilly or rather Alice to take her medicine again.
When Weaver attempts to talk Tilly into taking the pills Victoria gave him, Tilly refuses. She quickly explains that the pills make her foggy and forget important things. The audience watches as she tries to explain why this world they are in is not their home and how they are living, behind masks as she put it. Weaver does not seem to buy into Tilly's notions but for one reason or another agrees to hear her out. He arranges to follow her to a secret spot where she can show him what it is she has been trying to explain.
Fans of the show sit eagerly on the edge of their seats waiting to see if she will really be able to make him believe. In season one of the show it took several attempts for Emma Swan and the other characters to finally believe in who they really were. Fans now wondered if that would be the same for Alice and Weaver in this episode.
While Weaver follows Alice down the rabbit hole so to speak fans watched flashbacks of Rumple and Belle growing old together. Having enjoyed their time of adventuring they decide to embark on one final journey. Rumple became known as the Dark One which was were all of his wealth and power came from, but throughout the previous seasons it became clear what a burden being the Dark One truly was. Rumple attempted to rid himself of the title but failed each time. Most often due to the fact that he was not ready to let go of the power. In season seven episode four Rumple finally decided he was ready and no longer wanted to waist more time as the Dark One. He wanted to live a life with his family and die a normal death along with them.
After years of research and studying Belle and Rumple finally discover a way to rid themselves of the Dark One's burden. Just in time for Gideon to go off to college. With their son grown they decide to travel to the edge of realms. A place which for any Disney and Pixar fans was very reminiscent of Paradise Falls. They discovered if they waited there for the sun to be at it's brightest and to set then they could dispose of the dagger that held Rumple's power. So the couple happily built a house at the edge of the falls and spent their final days there in bliss. The entire scene with Belle and Rumple building their house and sharing loving moments together seemed like it came right out of the Up movie montage. The montage ended with an elderly Belle climbing up to open the curtains but losing her balance. An identical scene took place shortly after Belle and Rumple first met. It was a scene that displayed the feelings that were starting to blossom between the pair. It was fitting for their story to end in a similar fashion. Just as he had done before, Rumple caught Belle just in time.
Though he caught her, Belle was clearly very old and those would be her final moments. The pair shared a touching moment after Rumple attempted to heal his beloved. Belle stopped him and explained that this was all part of their journey. She told him that once they arrived she realized that the passage they had been following to dispose of the dagger did not mean the actual setting of the sun. It meant a metaphorical sun, or rather her. Belle needed to die in order for Rumple to rid himself of the dagger.
The end of one of the show's greatest couples came with a lot of tears, memories, and touching moments. Gideon arrived home to help burry his mother and comfort Rumple a short while later. He and Rumple talked about what the next steps would be in getting rid of the dagger. Gideon offered to take the dagger and keep it safe, but Rumple did not want to burden his son with the dagger. He told Gideon that he would give the dagger to the Guardian as the instructions stated.
Fans are now left wondering who this Guardian is and if they will make an appearance on the show. The flashback ended shortly after the conversation with Gideon and Rumple with no sign or hint to the Guardian. The viewers were transported back to present day Seattle where Tilly was still attempting to explain everything to Weaver. She trusted him. Though he betrayed her trust by offering her a sandwich which contained her medicine within it.
Rushing against the clock and the affects of the pills, Tilly brought Weaver to her secret place and searched for something she promised would make him remember. As the medicine began to take hold Tilly appeared holding a chipped tea cup. She displayed it for Weaver to see. She expected some kind of big reaction, and honestly so did most of the fans. The chipped tea cup meant a lot to him in previous seasons. It had always served as his connection to Belle. Though he did not recognize the cup at all. So without wasting anymore time Tilly grabbed Weaver's gun and aimed it toward him. When Weaver asked her what she was doing she replied that she was doing what he told her to do. Then she pulled the trigger.
The episode began to wrap up with Weaver in the hospital. He awoke after having a vision of Belle. Then he spoke to officer Rogers, also known as Captain Hook about releasing Tilly. Weaver did not want to press charges. A short while later Victoria entered the hospital room and reprimanded Weaver for letting Tilly go. Weaver retorted by threatening the rich and well connected business woman. He claimed to know things she did not want him to know or to get out. With that Victoria stomped off and the fans of Once Upon a Time were convinced that Rumpelstiltskin had awoken from the curse.
Considering Rumple had been somewhat immune to the previous curses it made sense for him to be the first character in this new city to learn the truth. However with truth comes power. In the past Rumple always craved power, so now fans are curious what he is going to do with this new power of his.