Happy day. Belle is back and oh, how I've missed her.
"The Crocodile" answered many questions I've had about some of my favorite Storybrooke characters and had me so enthralled that I didn't even realize I hadn't seen hide nor hair of Emma, Snow or Regina until the very end.
My practical side knows that the odds of Belle and Rumple lasting as a couple are slim at best, but the romantic in me never stops rooting for them. This episode gave me more hope than I've had in a long time.
But let's jump back to the fairy tale past. Rumplestiltskin may have been a coward but his wife was certainly no prize. She'd rather have a dead hero than a live husband and father for their son.
Mila was a party girl looking for adventure and a quiet life with her husband and son wasn't enough. Rumple had every right to be angry. Not only did she leave but she made him go back to Bael and tell him his mother was dead. That had to be one of the worst moments of his life. So I understood wanting to rip her heart out... but actually doing it was taking it to the extreme.
No doubt that moment of rage will now send Hook on a vendetta to kill Belle and remove one of Rumple's more important body parts. As a fan of Rumple and Belle I dread the coming confrontation. As a fan of the show, I'm eager to see the showdown.
Back in present day Storybrooke, it was wonderful to see Belle stand up for herself. She's been held prisoner for decades. She's finally free and it's about time she found out who she is in this new world. I'm thrilled that she's found a new friend to help her find her way and introduce her to pancakes and the awesomeness of syrup.
Ruby's becoming a powerhouse character that I want to see more of. It's about time we found out how the "wolf thing" translates over to the new Storybrooke. I'm wondering if there's more to it than that killer sense of smell. I'm hoping we get an episode that delves deeper into that soon.
I was proud that Belle refused to go to either her father or Rumple, even when Rumple rescued her. She needs to stand on her own two feet and what other job could be more perfect for Belle than running the library?
There were several other scenes that made me smile. Rumple asking Charming for dating advice was wonderfully sweet and just a tad funny. Charming's answer was perfect, as he said in this Once Upon a Time quote…
There's a difference between literal truth and honesty of the heart. Nothing taught me that more than this curse. | permalink
And finally, Rumple took the lesson to heart when he came clean with Belle, telling her the abridged version of the truth, which I understood. Too many gory detail would definitely scare her off, but this was certainly a step in the right direction when he admitted…
Magic has become a crutch that I can't walk without. | permalink
Can hope and love overcome evil and power? Again, the romantic in me hopes, while the skeptic in me braces for the worst.
But with Cora showing off her sparkly dirt, it's only a matter of time before she and Hook land in Storybrooke. Will they bring Emma and Snow with them?
Hope, love, revenge, power. Once Upon a Time wraps it all up in a sparkly, magical bow and it's a package I simply can't wait to open every Sunday.
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.