“Going Home” – ONCE129

Green smoke turns purple (3x11 Going Home) Once Upon a Time podcast


All magic comes with a price and for both our villains and heroes, the price they have to pay is going home. Only to where?

What a great mid-season finale! Daniel said that he’d do an interpretive dance if someone would sponsor a better TV for the team to watch Once Upon a Time. Anyone want to sponsor?

Looking back is so cool. Many scenes tie in so much with the pilot episode. While it ended in a not-so-happy ending, the episode wrapped up by answering so many questions, which makes it so interesting

It was shocking to see Blue Fairy came back from the dead. However, it was a bit awkward to see Rumple kiss his father. Although the scene seem sweet, it’s just a bit awkward to see both their faces an inches apart from each other.

In the Past

In the Enchanted Forest, the Blue Fairy told Snow that “One day, when the time is right, our story will reveal itself to her. ” It sounded like the Blue Fairy heard a prophecy but may not have been sure what it meant. Or maybe she hadn’t thought of writing the book yet? Being someone that is full of hope, could Blue Fairy have something to do with writing the book, or getting together the fairies into writing the book so that when time comes, Henry would find the book? How did the book get to Mary Margaret’s closet? Who put it there?

There was also a theory that August (Pinocchio) had something to do with writing the book because he had the typewriter. Did he co-wrote the book with the fairies?

This ties in so much with Storybrooke, which is all about hope. In the past, when Henry got the book, it said October 2011, meaning that he only has the book for only about two weeks before he found Emma, which was on October 23, 2011.

Family Tree assignment (3x11 Going Home)
In the past, Mary Margaret talked to Henry because he didn’t turn his assignment again, which is about his family tree.

Hope seemed to be the big theme of the episode. In the Once Upon a Time book, the foreword read:

The approach we took was to dig into the world of these iconic figures and find what it was about them that touched us so deeply. What we discovered was a powerful force that seemed to connect all these tales. Hope. For us, that’s what a fairy tale is. It’s the ability to hope that your life will improve. It’s the same reason we believe people buy lottery tickets—if you win, you get to quit your job and move to Paris. Or pursue whatever dream eludes you in your daily grind.

These days, hope is especially important and relevant to our lives. We wanted to write something that, for one hour each week, could transport our audience to a place where they could set everything aside and remember the hope they felt as children reading these tales for the first time. That feeling of hope—that one can transcend the circumstances into which he or she was born, or that one can find, no matter how difficult it seems, true love—was the idea we wanted to build upon, and thus, Grimm’s Fairy Tales became a jumping-off point for our show. The cherished place they hold in our hearts is what led us to delve into these characters and explore the icons we grew up with.

In the same scene, Mary Margaret also told Henry about fairy tales, “Fairy tales are a reminder that our lives will get better if we just hold on to hope. Your happy ending may not be what you expect, but that’s what makes it so special.” And even something that she said to Emma in the pilot episode, “Believing in even the possibility of a happy ending is a powerful thing.” It was so awesome to see how hope ties in from the beginning of the show up to where we are now.

Mary Margaret as Snow (3x11 Going Home)

When Henry found the page where he saw Emma’s name, could it be what triggered him to investigate? If so, that would mean Rumpelstiltskin had something to do with the book.

Smoke surrounds story book (3x11 Going Home)

With them showing the book being enveloped by the smoke, it seemed that this part of the story is wrapped up. Seeing the book being swallowed by the smoke seemed like the end of the story arch of the book. But will it be the the last time we will see the book? Can Hook find it for Emma and Henry?

In the Enchanted Forest, on the other hand, Rumple was seen with a shawl that belonged to Baelfire. It was the one he used to enchant so that he could cross the town line and not lose his memory.

We have also seen Emma giving birth to Henry 11 years ago in Phoenix. Looking back, as well as the one they showed in the present, it seemed that there were a lot of differences from what we’ve seen in the episode The Heart of the Truest Believer and the one in the present.

Hook and Tink meet in Neverland (3x11 Going Home)

It was also great to see a bit of Hook, Smee and Tink in Neverland, as well. Now that we have known about Rumple being Pan’s son, it made more sense how Pan helped Hook get out of Neverland. Timeline wise, this could have happen a long time after Tinkerbell lost her wings, and maybe just a few days before the Evil Queen’s curse hit. On the other hand, it was still unknown how Tinkerbell got to Neverland. Did Peter Pan have something to do with it as well?

We have seen Hook drink from his Rum bottle so many times. Did he ever run out of Rum? We’ve never seen it empty.

Tink told Hook that her wings got clipped a long time ago, but it seemed that Hook always believed in her.

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At Present

Storybrooke is gone. But will it be the last time we will ever see of it other than flashbacks?

Panry rips out Felix's heart (3x11 Going Home)

Pan-as-Henry brought Felix to the well, the very same well where Rumple dropped the true love potion; the one that brought magic to Storybrooke. But why the well? Is it because the well is where lost things are returned. So does this work for the curse because it was lost and it will be returned?

Pan also mentioned that Love can mean many things; it doesn’t just come from romance and family, but also from loyalty and friendship.

Jared S. Gilmore and Robbie Kay both did a great job playing each other. You could definitely see the switch in the characters while playing one another’s role.

Poor Rumple, Malcolm admitted to him that he never loved his son. Not even a look of remorse; referring to Rumple as a parasite that hindered him from doing what he wants, making him worse than Cora, who had to ripped her own heart so that love wouldn’t be her weakness. Pan, on the other hand, had his inside; even had two inside at the same time.

The Black Fairy's wand (3x11 Going Home)

Just coming out from Regina’s vault, the good guys talked about the Black Fairy’s wand. Tink said that the Black Fairy was one of the most powerful fairies ever, well verses in dark magic, but was exiled by Blue, taking the wand afterwards.

I just wanted to note something Tinkerbell said. She said that the Black Fairy was very powerful in dark magic and that the Blue Fairy “exiled” her. That suggests that she is still out there somewhere and could come back. I think the Black Fairy will be a witch of some kind, as there are a lot of stories about witches that have not yet been told. I think we’ll see her soon, as they tend to drop clues of what is coming and I don’t remember them mentioning her before. I thought the wand that could switch Pan and Henry back and Rumble knowing how to use it was a little too convenient – though a great time saver.

— Gareth

Who is the Black Fairy? Was it the blind witch in Hansel and Gretel’s story? Moreover, we have never seen Rumple use a bad fairy’s wand, only the good fairy’s. Was it because only dark magic comes with a price and not good magic?

Page in Rumple's book 2 (3x11 Going Home)Page in Rumple's book 1 (3x11 Going Home)
Down in Mr. Gold’s shop, Rumple was seen flipping through pages of a book. What could the pages in the book mean?

Emma also speculated about the life that she could have had if she kept Henry, leaving out how she’d never have known her parents and everyone would have been trapped in Storybooke forever. Same thing when Henry told Regina in the end how he shouldn’t have found Emma and just stayed with Regina and the curse forever.

In Mr. Gold’s shop, Snow showed Emma the unicorn mobile that was supposed to hang over her crib. Emma said she liked the unicorns. In heraldry, the unicorns is a symbol of innocence. In “The Doctor” we saw Regina getting magic lessons from Rumplestiltskin in which he instructed her to take the beast’s heart. At first, Regina refused on the principle that the unicorn was innocent, to which Rumple replied, “Nothing is innocent.” Eventually, Regina was convinced to take the heart of the unicorn, which set her on the path towards dark magic. And in the first part of S3, we saw Regina give Emma lessons in dark magic, as exemplified when Emma lit a fire or when Emma helped Regina cause a lunar eclipse. Could Emma being pictured beneath the unicorn symbolize that Emma, like Regina, might be further tempted towards dark magic in the second half of S3?

— slurpeez108

With Regina teaching Emma magic, is there a possibility that Emma could be swayed into dark magic, as well? If Regina taught her to channel anger to use magic, and Rumple telling her about channeling love and who she wants to protect, is Emma also destined to go her own dark way?

We finally got a somewhat idea as to why the Shadow ripped the Blue Fairy’s shadow. If the Shadow was after the wand, then that explains why it took her shadow. Was the Shadow also looking for the black wand, that’s why he fly off to where Blue’s body lay, not out to attack the good guys here, that’s why they could easily “hide.”

So the shadow, which was a part of Neverland, is destroyed. That has to have consequences. Also everyone who had their shadow took and appeared dead is revived now that the shadow is destroyed? So does that mean Greg/Owen is alive again? As far as I know no one buried him. And what about all the other people pan apparently stole the shadow from? Is Greg/Owen alive?

— Scott

Is Greg alive as well? Moreover, if the shadow’s death freed everyone else’s shadow, then what happened to Neverland if the shadow was the sole inhabitant? Was this actually Pan’s shadow and not the original inhabitant? How is it that shadows are attracted to light, but also can be destroyed by the same thing? Now that the sole inhabitant of Neverland is destroyed, is it possible that Neverland got destroyed, too?

Tinkerbell finally got her wings back and when she did, Tink stayed back with the Blue Fairy.

No matter where Rumpelstiltskin may be, can we assume now that Peter Pan is truly gone?

Back in Mr. Gold’s shop, it was a bit surprising not to see Pan’s eyes change like what happened in the episode, “Save Henry.” Perhaps it was because Pan’s eyes was closed so they decided not to show it?

Pan freezes everybody (3x11 Going Home)

In the town square, they found Henry with the help of Granny. It was also cool to see the seven dwarves, as well as Archie Hopper, even if it was only Grumpy who had a speaking line.

When Pan woke up in Mr. Gold’s shop, Pan told his son how Rumple became a hindrance of how he wants his life to go. Isn’t Pan father of the year?

It was also revealed that Pan was the one who made the cuff that restrained Regina, and later Rumple, from using magic, indicating that Pan manipulated everything from the beginning.

It was a bit disappointing at first when his first instinct when he was restrained off his powers to go back to being a coward. Fortunately, as he was about to cut his hands off, he came back to his senses and thought of The Dark One’s dagger, risking his life for the greater good. But where is he now? Is he really dead? How was Rumple’s death led to Pan’s demise?

Rumple stabs Pan (3x11 Going Home)

When Rumple’s shadow was back inside his body, did he also got some of his magic back, giving him the ability to defeat Pan?

Just a clarification, Rumple also stabbed himself when he stabbed Pan in the back. You could see the pain in his eyes when the dagger hit Pan’s back. Here are some of the feedbacks we got from some of the listeners:

Didn’t the previous dark one try to kill himself and he could not. He needed someone else to kill him & take over the dark one powers. So how can Rumple kill himself along with his father?

— Jill

Hey guys, So let’s assume Rumple is indeed dead (que Vader, NOOOOOO) How does this fulfill the prophecy? Everyone seems to be glossing over that, probably from the trauma of actually losing Rumple, but I digress.

— Chris

I think that Rumple killed Pan and died himself. What we know is that a person who kills The Dark One becomes the Dark One himself. If Rumple kills himself through Pan, then there is no next Dark One. Thus, The Dark One disappears.

— Floria

About Regina, there would be no point for her to be evil again, because she cannot hurt Snow and Charming in fairy tale land due to Rumple’s spell in season 2. So maybe she will work against the danger Hook mentioned with Snow and Charming or will reconcile with Snow now that her only family (Henry) is gone.

A theory about Rumple: when Rumple died, he showed none of the pain or struggle that Pan did, … I think the undoing was Rumple losing his “dark oneness” and maybe he ended up back in fairy tale land. I think Pan is dead, because we saw his youth being stripped away so, yeah, he’s dead, but Rumple maybe (and hopefully is) a different story. Thanks for the great podcast!

— Nikki

As far as the future holds, I don’t think we have seen the last of Rumple or Pan, and I think Adam and Eddy wouldn’t kill off a character to beloved and essential to the show…Taking to twitter the lack of goodbyes to him from the cast and himself is a good sign of what’s to come….

— Onceabeliever

I don’t think Rumple is dead. Even though the cuff blocked his magic, his dagger is also magical so I think when he stabbed Pan with it and they both disappeared, that Rumple used the dagger to somehow teleport to another realm or location. Why else do you think the ultimate death of the dark one would end up being a flash of light instead of just death? Rumple has cheated death before and seeing that his “Undoing” was his father in the form of a boy, his prophecy has finally come to pass, but maybe instead of death it was redemption of the past and maybe striping away his magic, becoming a hero by sacrificing himself to save the people he care most about. So I’m willing to believe that we will see Rumple in maybe Enchanted Forest or maybe even in [New York] to meet Emma. I also believe that we will see Storybrooke again. Even though the book looked as if it di sappeared with the town, I suspect that this book will be a main focus in the second half. If the Blue Fairy did indeed create the book, it has to have magical properties why else do you think they hinted in the flashback with Blue Fairy and Snow?. Maybe it’s the key to magically bringing back the town and it’s residents and even helping Henry to believe again. Love to hear your thoughts. Thanks for the podcast!

— David

Does this mean that Rumple isn’t really dead yet? Rumpelstiltskin is one of the most beloved characters, if he is dead, how come the other actors haven’t bid goodbye to the actor, Robert Carlyle? Did Rumple just lose his being a Dark One but not really died in the process? Is the book going to (magically) appear in Emma’s closet now, just like what happened with Mary Margaret? If Rumpelstiltskin isn’t completely dead, could there be a possibility for us to see him in New York?

Regina was forced to say goodbye to the thing she loves the most in order for her to break the curse. Regina also added, “I can never see him again, it’s the only way to undo what she started. Breaking the curse would remove the town. Everyone will go back to where they came from, preventing them from returning.” From what Regina said, it seemed that everyone who will be back in the Enchanted Forest will retain their memories, except Emma and Henry. Regina also told Emma that while Emma can take him because she’s the savior, Emma and Henry will both lose their memory of everything that has happened in the past year, leaving everything back to being stories again.

In addition, Regina also gave Emma and Henry something good off the new curse, by giving them good memories; good life for Emma and Henry. In Emma and Henry’s new alternate past, she has never given him up, and that they were always together. Judging from this, it seemed that Regina, and Rumpelstiltskin have both redeemed themselves.

Is Emma also into Hook when he told her that there will not be a day that will go by that he wouldn’t think of her? With Hook in New York with Emma, and Neal stuck in the Enchanted Forest, can he finally have an equal chance to winning Emma over Neal? Are we going to see Neal die in the Enchanted Forest?

Before Emma and Henry left Storybrooke, Regina clarified, When the curse washes on us, we will all go back. Nothing will be left behind, including your memories. It’s what the curse does. Storybrooke will no longer exist, it won’t ever have existed. So these last year will be gone from both your memories. We will be back from being stories again.” It seemed that the curse itself did one thing — remove Storybrooke and bring everyone back in the Enchanted Forest. Regina also said that their past won’t be real, but their future will.

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One Year Later, New York City

Eddie Kitsis and Adam Horowitz both said that they are aware of Jared S. Gilmore’s age, and made the time move up a year ahead to keep up with his age.

By the way, the clock was shown 8:15 am. Nice nod to Storybrooke.

Does that mean that Emma’s still a bail bondsperson, only now she’s a mother to Henry?

Henry water's plants (3x11 Going Home)
In Emma’s bookshelf, two books can be seen: Polar Star and something by Gore Vidal, who was known for his works on several novels, plays, the screenplay of the Ben Hur movie. Coincidence or planned?

Hook knocked to Emma’s door to tell her that something has happened to her family. What exactly happened to them? If the curse is broken and undone, did anything happened to the Enchanted Forest as well, or will they find their old land how they left it?

Despite what they showed with the winter finale, certainly there are still a lot that we are yet to know.

Emma was also seen wearing the other circle necklace that she used to wear back in Storybrooke. She also wore some kind of band in her wrist, perhaps to cover up the tattoo?

Does Emma still has magic in her? If she does, and she did magic one way or another, will it help her recover her and Henry’s memory?

If Emma and Henry both have alternate pasts, what did Emma told Henry of his father? Did she still tell him that his father was a fireman who died rescuing a family.

Sad News: This episode is going to be Jenny’s last day in joining the podcast. We will miss you, Jenny! Anytime she wants to come by and say something, she’s always welcome to come back and join us again!

Once Upon a Time won’t be back until March 9th but don’t worry, the show will only be off air for 11 Sundays. Once Upon a Time in Wonderland also returns March 6. What are your thoughts about the next half of the season? Share us what your think by sending us an email, commenting below or joining us in the forum!

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  • Rams

    Will you guys watch the promo for S3.B and talk about it in the podcast?

    • http://DanielJLewis.net/about Daniel J. Lewis

      We probably will. If not us, then Hunter will probably share something with us.

      • Rams


  • slurpeez108

    You mistakenly said that Neal didn’t say goodbye to Emma. He did. He said, “This isn’t over. I’ll see both of you again.”

    • http://DanielJLewis.net/about Daniel J. Lewis

      I thought we said he didn’t say goodbye to Henry. Faithfully,

      Daniel J. Lewis

      • Jacquelyn

        Says it to both really. He claps Henry’s shoulder. And at the town line, he is hugging Henry before Regina holds out her hand to bring him over and explain his and Emma’s new life.

      • slurpeez108

        Jenny compared Hook’s goodbye with Neal’s goodbye to Emma. Jenny claimed Neal didn’t say anything to Emma except, “I’m going back there,” which Neal never actually said. Emma did. Neal’s reply to her was that he’d see both her and Henry again. I just want to set the record straight, because Neal and Emma’s story isn’t done.

        • http://DanielJLewis.net/about Daniel J. Lewis

          Hmm. I guess I misheard during that part. I totally agree. We’re not finished with Emma and Neal … unless Neal dies in the Enchanted Forest. 😛

          • slurpeez108

            Nope! Not going to happen. You said the same thing about Hook earlier, by the way, and he’s still alive and well. :)

  • DG

    I really wish you would have mentioned a tv purchase prior to Black Friday… I would have stood in a Walmart mega line to grab you a tv JUST so I could see the interpretive dance. HA! Love the podcast!

    • http://DanielJLewis.net/about Daniel J. Lewis

      Ha ha! I didn’t get the idea until after Black Friday because I realized that as great as the deals were, we still couldn’t afford to upgrade from our little 27″ CRT.

      February is actually a great time for TV sales. I’m thinking of doing a special crowdfund campaign.

      • DG

        Jenny!!! No!!! *wipes away a tear as I just finished the podcast*

  • Clessidor

    “Down in Mr. Gold’s shop, Rumple was seen flipping through pages of a book. What could the pages in the book mean?”

    Well it’s definetly a spellbook. On the first screenshoot theere are latin words on it. These are quotes from the work of the Archpoet, an anonymous author of the 12th century.
    The right page is an alphabet which looks similar to three occult alphabets Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa published in the 16th century. But I’m not 100 percent sure if it’s exactly one of these alphabets or if it’s just a similar one from that time periode.
    Also there are astronomical and alchemist symbols on some of these pages.
    But I’m not sure if this pages does have a meaning or if they are just made to look like it is a medieval spellbook/grimoire.
    We’ve already seen spellbooks before. Cora’s book had also medieval latin quotes, the occult alphabet and alchemistic symbols in it. The book the Red Queen and Jafar read in “Forget me Knot”, too.
    So it seems that all spellbooks in the OUAT-Universe look like this.

  • Phee

    The thing Emma wears around her wrist is Graham’s shoelace. JMo tweeted about it a couple of months ago.

    • http://DanielJLewis.net/about Daniel J. Lewis

      Oh yeah! I forgot about that.

  • Juan Felipe

    I’m angry at Rumple for dying instead of shooting Pan in the head wile he slept.
    Also I think Rumple wasn’t holding him with a bear hug but that the shadow got inside him to hold him.

  • Matt

    With regards to the book I thought it was interesting that the purple smoke went over and around it, rather than through it (if you look very carefully). We normally see the smoke just ripping through stuff. I’m wondering if the book is protected from magic?

  • True Believer

    Loved this take on the winter finale! Especially the part you added in with Felix saying: “RIIIIIIP!” that made me laugh out loud :) and thank you for making homework so tolerable, I love listening to the podcast while I’m doing it.

    Also, the band on Emma’s wrist is a shoelace from Graham’s boot. I forget where I heard this from, but it was Jennifer Morrison’s idea for Emma to keep it. Now what that means for a possible future mention of Graham or another look at him, I don’t know. Perhaps you could speculate on this? Anyway, love the podcast and keep up the awesome work!

  • lovefairy

    What if the black fairy is the wicked witch of the west? it makes since, she wares black, she’s evil, and she was in the promo for the up coming season. that would also connect her to Regina because she could have taught her the dark magic.