‘Once Upon a Time’ Recap: A Darling New Take on a Classic Tale (Season 2, Episode 21)

Once upon a Time

This week’s penultimate episode of Once Upon a Time took us to a brand new, yet oh-so-familiar world: Kensington Gardens in Victorian London. That’s right, fairytale fans, we’re starting to learn the truth behind what happened to Bae after Rumplestilskin abandoned him and how he stayed so young (and cute) for all these years. Meanwhile, in Storybrooke Emma and Neal learned all about Tamara’s dark side, what really happened to Greg’s father, and a shocking twist that left us with one very important question: Where did Neal go?! Read on for all the bewitching details from “Second Star to the Right.”

Fairytale Land Flashbacks: The episode picked up right where we left off with Bae back in Season 1 when his father chose magic and power over family and love. Bae found himself alone in a brand new world: Kensington Gardens in Victorian England and when we fast-forward six months we see that he’s cold, dirty, and very hungry. Bae snuck into the open window of a posh flat and after stuffing his face with as much bread as he possibly can (clearly he doesn’t know the damaging effects of carbs) he met the ultra-sweet Wendy Darling.

In fact, the entire Darling family is the epitome of kindness because they invite Bae to stay with them and be apart of their family — something that Bae has never really had. Bae soon found out that there is magic in this world but it’s a dark type of magic called “The Shadow.” Wendy and her brothers are intrigued and delighted by the shadow saying it can change into all sorts of fun shapes and can fly around but Bae warned the children not to go near it because all magic comes with a price.

Of course, Wendy doesn’t listen and she lets The Shadow whisk her away to a far off place called Neverland where there are no adults and you never grow old. Bae is devastated but just after dawn Wendy returns to the Darling house with a solemn look on her face declaring that she was in Neverland for much longer than just a night. “I guess time works differently in Neverland,” she whispered to Bae. Wendy told Bae that although Neverland had it’s perks, (mermaids, fairies, etc.) at night all of the children would cry for their parents because once you step foot on the soil, you can never leave. The Shadow only let Wendy return because he wanted a boy in her stead.

The next night, the Darling children prepared to fight off the dark creature but they are no match for The Shadow’s powers. In order to save the Darling children, Bae sacrificed himself to be The Shadow’s victim and take off flying through London as the Neverland Lord’s prisoner. Just as they were about to reach the new land, Bae wrestled free from The Shadow’s grasp and fell into the sea—only to find himself upon the Jolly Roger and looking into the smoldering guyliner-ed eyes of Captain Hook.

Storybrooke Sacrifices: The psychotic twosome — Greg and Tamara — have Regina strapped down to bed and they kept mumbling on and on about how proud the “Home Office” is going to be with all of the magical data they’ve collected. They believe that magic is “unholy” and it should never belong in this world, so they’ve snatched her three magic beans, temporarily disabled her magic, and found the trigger that could destroy all of Storybrooke. (But they don’t know the trigger can do that… yet.)

Emma was determined to find the truth behind Tamara because she has a hunch that she’s an evil, man-stealing, b**ch, and Snow is determined to find Regina because she still feels terrible for the whole killing-her-mother thing. Neal and Emma begin searching on the beach and the have a sweet heart to heart where Neal revealed how horrible he feels for letting Regina go to jail in his stead and he has thought about her everyday and wishes things had turned out differently.

Snow and Charming discovered where Regina is being held captive by using a spell that they obtaineded from Rumple. The he spell allows Snow to see through Regina’s eyes and feel everything she was feeling — which was immense pain because Greg was basically electrocuting the queen to death in order to learn what really happened to his father. As it turned out, Regina killed Greg’s father shortly after Greg’s chubby past-self left Stroybrooke and she buried him at their old campsite.

While Snow and Charming were busy letting The Blue Fairy restore Regina back to health, Emma and Neal discovered that Tamara is, in fact, a taser-wielding psycho who never ever loved Neal. Ouch, that hits you right in the gut…  literally as she shot Neal in the stomach. Just as Emma was about to kill the magic-crazed fake-fiancé, Tamara threw down one of Regina’s magic beans and a portal to the unknown opens in the middle of the floor and Tamara snuck away. Emma and a very wounded Neal tried to escape the swirling green vortex, but the floor started to break and Neal hung on to Emma’s hands for dear life.

Neal worried that their son will left an orphan and he told Emma that she has to let go saying, “Henry can’t lose both of us, and grow up like we did.” (It was all a very sweet Titantic-esque moment.) The twosome exchanged “I love you’s” and Neal slipped through Emma’s grasp and fell through the portal into an unknown world while Emma is left heartbroken and devastated. Meanwhile, over with the two magic-hating loons, Tamara revealed that the “Home Office” knows what the trigger can do and they are tasked with an important and deadly new mission: “We have to blow Storybrooke off the map!” Yikes. 

What did you think of “Second Star to the Right?” What realm do you think Neal ended up in? Were you surpsied to learn about The Shadow and the perils of Neverland? Cast your spell in the comments below!

Follow Leanne on Twitter @LeanneAguilera

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