Once Upon a Time hits the high seas with Captain Hook’s back story in ‘The Crocodile.’ What’s not to like about this amazing episode? If it’s even possible, OUAT keeps getting better. ‘Crocodile’ is a tour de force for Robert Carlyle and a dream episode for Rumpelstiltskin/Belle shippers or “Rumbelle” fans.
The episode begins with Mr. Gold/Belle’s relationship deteriorating. Belle (Emilie de Ravin) has a nightmare about Mr. Gold reverting back to Rumpel’s old ways and she sees Gold practicing magic in the basement. Gold continues to keep secrets from Belle which prompts her to leave. Belle stops at Granny’s, makes friends with Ruby and proceeds to go to the library in hopes of starting a job and a new life. Belle, however, is kidnapped by orders of Belle’s father and is sent to the mine to have her memories erased of her old life.
In a kick ass magic scene, Gold pulls Belle’s mine cart back before it can go over the town line and saves her memories of her life in Fairytale Land. The subsequent scene in the library where Gold admits to Belle he’s a coward and uses magic as a crutch is perhaps the most powerful and heart wrenching scene yet in Season Two. I’d be surprised if any Rumbeller had a dry eye by the end of the episode.
‘The Crocodile’ also has an excellent back story finally revealing what exactly happened to Rumpel wife. We see how his wife reviles him and spends time carousing at a tavern instead of coming home. Rumpel’s wife seems incredibly cold and selfish even by Regina’s standards.
There is another heartbreaking scene when poor Rumpel rushes on to Hook’s ship to rescue his wife who’s been captured by pirates. Hook challenges Rumpel to a duel and of course Rumpel can’t fight due to his bum leg. After Hook’s cruelty, you don’t feel sorry for the captain when Rumpel appears later as the Dark One to take Hook up on that sword fight. ‘Crocodile’ offers a great twist when it reveals Rumpel’s wife now is with Hook and wants to exchange the last magic bean in Fairytale Land if Rumpel will let them go.
The biggest shock comes when Rumpel murders his wife as payback for leaving him and Bae. ‘The Crocodile’ adds a lot of clever twists to the Captain Hook story with Rumpel recast as the crocodile that takes Hook’s hand and revealing the dubious magic bean trader is Mr. Smee. I can’t wait to see what havoc Hook is going to wreak on Storybrooke once he gets the magic portal to work.
We Are Both
Broken (Season 2 premiere)
A Land Without Magic (Season 1 finale)
Heart of Darkness