Once Upon a Time Review: I Am Your Father!

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Did anyone realize that when Peter Pan said he needed to find the heart of the truest believer he literally meant he needed the boy's heart?

Once Upon a Time Season 3 Episode 8 proved that it was going to take more than lovely thoughts to reunite Henry's heart with his body.  And that was the least of the revelations.

Son vs. Father

Let's rewind to the Neverland of the past...

Rumpelstiltskin was once a young boy who longed for a family. What he got was a selfish conman for a father.

I couldn't figure out where it was all going to lead when Rumpel and his dad landed in Neverland but I knew it had to lead back to Peter Pan.

As the evil shadow of Neverland taunted his father up above, poor Rumpel held on to his doll and begged for his father to return. Unfortunately, when he did it was a far worse nightmare than anything that boy could have imagined.

How heartless does a man have to be to let his son get ripped away so that he can live the life of a spoiled child? No wonder Rumpelstiltskin turned to the power of the Dark One. He had almost no power at all for the early parts of his life. The one person he should have been able to trust abandoned him. Then his wife left him because she was bored with their life.

But the revelation that Peter Pan was actually Rumpel's father totally floored me. It ranked up there with watching The Empire Strikes Back when I was 9. I never saw it coming.

And as if that wasn't enough, Pan swapped Pandora's box and sent his grown son inside.

I suppose it shouldn't have been much of a shock that he'd take his own great-grandson's heart and leave him to die.

If I had any complaints about the episode it was that I wanted to see more of Regina and Emma working together.  I really enjoy it when these two team up and their scenes just weren't long enough to satisfy me.

Hook gave us our one small moment of humor when he responded to Emma in this Once Upon a Time quote

Emma: We need to talk.
Hook: I've found that when a woman says that I'm rarely in for a pleasant conversation.

I hated that Hook got left behind as did Snow and Charming, but I'm assuming they'll have their roles to play in this saga sometime soon.

As for Henry, his desire to play the noble hero was so idealistic it was a little hard to take…

I know all magic comes with a price. Saving magic must come with a price too.


Pan played on all of his doubts about his parents and all of the lies they'd told him in the past. It was a sad moment when he chose to believe Pan over them.

One thing I'm hoping for is that Regina gets her hands on Peter Pan. She'll have no qualms about ripping that heart straight out of his chest and I'll enjoying seeing it if it happens.

So is Rumpelstiltskin truly banished for all eternity? Will David ever be able to leave Neverland and can anyone save Henry?

Kudos to Once Upon a Time. Not many shows truly surprise me but Rumpelstiltskin's connection to Peter Pan was an awesome twist. I can't wait to see what they have in store for us next.


Editor Rating: 4.7 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (111 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.


I do have a question though - that I just thought of. Whose shadow is that? The shadow was there before Rumple's dad became Pan - what's that story?

@ Robin Harry

That has never been explained. I personally don't care if they ever address it because I don't want them to get too far afield of our core characters. If it relates to the history of the main conflict, then address it. If not, they should pass.


I liked this episode ,finally they all team up together for Henry.I surprised to knowing that Peter Pan is Rample's father ,really no one expect that .I love Regena and Emma doing magic together they made really good team .about Henry, I think Neverland cause damage to his brain ,how he can trust of Peter pan instead his family?
it's right that Peter pan and Rample they both abandoned of his own son but at least Rample felt regret immediately,and Peter pan seemed like he is proud with he have done.


I love the show, but I was very disappointed with this episode and
I was not surprised at all that Peter Pan was Rump's father. To be honesty, I have been let down by the last 2 seasons because the show is no longer about fantasies, it is about the drama that happens in our lives. People in the real world fight about who will have the rights of their children. The show has become a soap opera and I would like to just say good luck trying to have another season. The whole Peter Pan story has gone on longer than enough. The writers should either "fix" it or just give up. Sorry but the truth hurts.


Great episode. I was really suprized to find out that Peter Pan is Rumples father I wonder when the others will find out because you know at some point they will. I can't believe Henry gave Pan his heart now he's dead. I don't think he'll stay dead Regina, Emma and the others will find away to save him and kill Peter Pan. Can't wait till the next episode.


Just thought of something else, last season, Henry wanted to destroy magic bc of the damage it had done to his family. So bc Peter Pan said magic must be saved, he believes him over his parents to save it. I want Peter Pan to have a ripped out heart courtesy of Regina and honestly I would not care if they killed Henry. He is so annoying. I think Baelfire is going to let Rumple out of the box and then they will learn Pan's true identity. I hate the idea of having to wait 2 weeks...😢


Anyone else wish Mary Poppins would drop out of the sky, give Pan a good talking to, and send him through a portal back to his room where he's grounded?


I really liked this episode and did not see Peter Pan being Rumples father coming. It's odd, because I know that Peter Pan is selfish and does horrible, evil things, but so has Rumple, so has Regina and Regina's mom. I do believe there is good in Peter, I think he truly would have wanted to reconnect with Rumple if he had chosen not to put him in the box. When he chose to let Rumple go, you could see that he was conflicted about it and had convinced himself that Rumple was better off without him. When Rumple was being carried away, they look on Peters face was one of sadness, not triumph. Yes, he was willing to sacrifice Henry, but who was Henry to him? He was just a means to an end. Rumple was planning to kill Henry to save himself too, after hearing that prophecy. That only changed later. I would be interested to see if Peter does something surprising at the end, where we see a little bit of the good in him, maybe right before he is defeated. I think everyone is being too hard on Henry. He is just a kid and he is an idealistic one with a really good heart. He also believed Wendy was dying and that if he didn't do what he did, that she would die. They should have told them what Wendy said, and that it came from Wendy, that might have convinced Henry. I really like Henry, always have and I have to admit that I was crying when he put his heart into Pan. I don't want him to be killed off, I really like him. Also, I kind of want Emma to be with Hook, but I'm not sure that's where things are going to go. Also, I cannot wait for Regina to meet Robin Hood. Can't wait for the next episode!

@ jen623

I don't see anything redeeming in Pan at all. He's perfectly willing to kill his own great-grandson to keep living, even though he knows that's not the natural order of things. He knows, and has known, exactly how Henry is related to him for a long time. Pan has extended his life way beyond what it should be just so he can live like a carefree little boy. But, Rumple has risked his life for Henry's several times, even after knowing what might happen to him. Even more telling, Rumple has risked his life for Belle. Meanwhile, Pan locks up Wendy for a hundred years. Nope...I see NOTHING redeeming about Rumple's father whatsoever.


For a kid who was shown to be really smart since season one, Henry sure is making some stupid choices. Why would he believe Pan over his parents???? Um hello Pan is the one who kidnapped you and all of a sudden you believe him because he wants you to save magic???? This was the only major plothole in this episode. Other than that, Rumple's story was awesome especially how we never saw it coming that Pan was his father. Can't wait to see where this show goes next.


Henry is getting annoying... he used to be smart in season 1 what happend??? plus, the kid actor in puberty does not help us to believe that he is an 11 year old naive kid

@ Sarah

Sarah, 11 years old IS puberty. That's 6th grade, or middle school age, where we live. Officially, Henry is a "tween."


And the winner for playing the rol of the most stupid kid in the world is.........Henry, Congratulations, your three parents must be so proud of you tonight. I mean really, how can anyone be such an idiot? Believing the nastiest person ever over his family? I actually don't care if he dies.

@ elisa

I'm actually thinking that killing Henry would be a great catalyst for some excellent stories. It's risky. I can't think of any series that has killed a main child character. But, going forward, I don't see Henry's role being very important once he unites his family. Then what happens? Happy endings all around? BORING!

@ KansasGuest

After last week I decided I would prefer he dies. Him dying would send Emma to a dark place that we haven't gotten to see her explore yet, and maybe push her and Regina together even more to avenge his death. I would much rather him die than have a redo of season 1 and her breaking the curse by saving him.

@ kandi1212

Good ideas, Kandi!

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Once Upon a Time Season 3 Episode 8 Quotes

Emma: We need to talk.
Hook: I've found that when a woman says that I'm rarely in for a pleasant conversation.

If you save magic you'll save us all but to do it you have to truly believe.

Peter Pan