1. Rumplestiltskin's missing mother has been revealed to be the Black Fairy. After luring her in with an innocent child, Rumple wants to know why she abandoned him. She replies that she chose power over love. Will Rumple find out more about his mother's choices?
Joanne: I am hoping that we find out more about the Black Fairy's backstory. Why did she abandon her child? Did she do it out of choice or was she forced to? Was Malcolm really Rumple's father or was Rumple left with Malcolm as a changeling? Questions, questions, so many questions left unanswered. Now, after meeting both his father and mother, I believe the cards have always been stacked against Rumple.
Sam: I do want to know more about the Black Fairy. I wonder how long Rumple knew his mother was a fairy? This revelation makes me wonder about the role of Fate in Once and how all the tales are woven together.
Teresa: Rumple having fairy blood to me explains a lot about his life and his choices. I agree with Joanne that this revealed the deck was stacked against him from birth. He has always had conflicting magic warring within him, and his addiction to magic, like a crack baby, was sadly given to him biologically from his mother. Never has he been seen on Once receive the help he needed with this. It can also explain why Belle demanding cold turkey has never worked. Him going through the 12-Steps and also how the Black Fairy and Malcolm hooked up is one awesome story waiting to happen!
2. Belle, with the help of the Blue Fairy, has baby Gideon whisked away. How will Rumple find him? Did Belle make the right choice?
Teresa: I think Rumple has many tricks up his sleeve to find Gideon, and I'm not entirely sure he is wrong in that. Belle threatened from 6x01 to take his son away from him and hid away before he did all the weird and wrong things later. If she was mad at him, fine. But she should have left the kid out of it. I have seen many a man almost lose his mind when a mother threatens what Belle did. It is horrible and pushes the man into desperation (we all know Rumple is a Desperate Soul). Hence, I see the "magic" in this dispute in real world terms--the mother threatens that the father will not see his child, the man responds by filing an injunction (the magical version being the wrist cuff), the mother counteracts, and Blue is the equivalent of Social Services taking the child into the foster system. The scary part is that this "system" is a very bad one: the shady fairies. So in my opinion, Belle was wrong, especially knowing what she does about the Black Fairy. She gift-wrapped her son for the Black Fairy to kidnap. Unfortunately, she is not thinking clearly and we know more than she about what is really going on.
Joanne: Rumple could use blood magic, in my opinion, to create a locator spell to find Gideon. He has all sorts of magic at his disposal to find the baby. Belle acted on the only information that she had. She did what she felt was right, but I think she is being manipulated by her dreams or visions of Gideon. Her judgment has been clouded and I feel that she acted to hastily sending the baby off with the Blue Fairy.
Sam: I think that recovering Gideon will be what brings Belle and Rumple back together. I don't fault Belle for sending their baby away. She is not the first mother on Once to send a baby away to "give them their best chance." Snow and Charming, Emma and even Gepetto all made that choice. Belle's choice is in direct contrast to what we learned about Rumple's mother who like Cora and Pan abandoned a child for selfish reasons.
3. Aladdin takes on the role of genie to help Jasmine, will her wishes be granted and Agrabah be saved? Will Aladdin be trapped forever as a slave to the lamp?
Joanne: I don't think Aladdin remembered to read the fine print on being a genie when he clamped on those magic bracelets. He will be at the mercy of anyone who is in possession of the magic lamp. He gave up his free will and will be forced to hurt his friends if a villain, like the Evil Queen or Jafar, gets a hold of the lamp. The only way to get free of the lamp is for the master to wish the genie free. It will probably work out for him, but there will be some unforeseen roadblocks along the way.
Sam: Those of us who watched Once Upon a Time in Wonderland may know a little more about genie lore, and it's never as easy as just making a wish. Magic still has a price. It was a very brave thing for Aladdin to do, becoming the genie. He gave up his free will and made himself a slave to the owner of the lamp. That's a big deal! Since I believe in happy endings, I expect that Aladdin and Agrabah will be saved in the end.
Teresa: I'm not so sure. Becoming a genie makes people lose their free will. The Wonderland genies, Cyrus and Will, got lucky in that both ended up becoming genies to their true loves and ended up free. Aladdin may not be so lucky. I don't think though he will forever be trapped as a genie, because that would just suck.
4. Gold and the Evil Queen have severed their relationship. Did the Evil Queen make a mistake, not killing Zelena, and making an enemy of Gold, who considers her just a pawn in his long game?
Sam: There is nothing better in this show than watching Rumple and the Evil Queen have a heated, verbal showdown! Nothing! For me this Hate-ship is better than any Love-ship. Rumple will always outsmart everyone in the end.
Teresa: Making an enemy of Gold is never a good idea. Like Sam, I like their relationship as it has been for the last five seasons, and am glad it is back. Thank goodness too that the whole GoldenQueen thing is over. In my opinion the concept and choice for Once to go there, especially so graphically, was a grave blunder. Frankly, I hope that Rumple, or even better, Belle, ends up killing the Evil Queen (or give her the punishment of forcing her back into Regina).
Joanne: The Evil Queen made a big mistake. Never get on Rumple's bad side. He has a long memory for old grudges, take Captain Hook for example. I really think that there was no real attachment on Rumple's side. He was just playing her, but now that she has defied him, Rumple will work against her and make her pay for her mistake.
5. Favorite Scene?
Joanne: I loved the scene where Gold went to the library to use his magic on Belle and get the baby from her. It was a heinous plan, but Belle talked him out of it. He could never really hurt her and he made the choice not to take the baby.
Sam: I agree with Joanne. I was happy and relieved to see that when it came down to really hurting Belle, Rumple's better judgement and love for her and their child won out and he made the right choice. Now he just needs to set up better wards around his shop to keep the Evil Queen out!
Teresa: Ditto to all. It showed also that Rumple is being written back to where he was S1-3: a man who would never hurt Belle. I welcome that.
6. Favorite Quote?
Joanne: "I play a very long game and you, you're nothing more than one of my pawns."~Mr. Gold
Teresa: "I would never hurt you Belle. Never."~Mr. Gold
7. Anything Else?
Joanne: As I mentioned before, I really would like to know more about the Black Fairy and her backstory. There are a lot of unanswered questions about her choices and why she steals children.
Teresa: Black Fairy all the way! And I hope to see the promised "dawn" in the Winter Finale. I think it will lift fans' spirits. I want that joy for Oncers more than anything. I also look forward to the alternate universe. I think it will be fun!