Hades And The Wicked Witch Meet Cute On Once Upon A Time
Is the most villainous bicycle ride in history also the most romantic?
Happy "Your Mom Doesn't Love You As Much As She Loves Your Sister" Day!
What's the occasion? In an Oz flashback, it's Zelena's birthday! Actually, no it's not; it's the anniversary of the day her mom abandoned her. She doesn't know when her actual birthday is. BYOB.
What are the refreshments? One solitary green cupcake -- that goes completely uneaten.
Whose big public scene will everyone be talking about tomorrow? Zelena who has summoned CGI Scarecrow to her lair in order to steal his brain. With it, and a few other items, Zelena can time-travel back to when her mom gave her up so she can...kill her? I'm a little unsure about her plan here. Doesn't matter, because the Munchkins sent word to Kansas, and now Dorothy's here to stop all the fun. With an assist from Toto, Dorothy and CGI Scarecrow flee the witch's castle.
Baby On Board (To A Trip To Hell)
Alert Type: Amber Alert.
Issue: Hades is holding Rumple captive in Hell and forcing him to construct a portal to Storybrooke so that he can steal Zelena's baby. Hades can travel back and forth from hell whenever he pleases, but he can't bring anyone alive back without Rumple's portal-making skills. Hades promises to maybe, possibly consider ripping up Rumple's contract -- which promises his second-born to Hades -- if the portal works.
Complicating Factors: While Rumple builds the portal, Zelena is working her own plan to steal her baby back from the heroes. She disguises herself as the Blue Fairy and almost snatches the brat from Belle's grimy paws, but the real Blue Fairy shows up right in the nick of time to stop her.
Resolution: In that same nick of time, the portal opens in the baby's nursery. Belle and the baby fall in, and Zelena jumps in after them. They find themselves in the underworld, but not exactly on the other end of the portal where Hades expected them. Oh, and Zelena's magic is gone.
Spoiler: Everyone wants this fucking baby, huh?
And What Are These Two Nerds Up To?
What is everyone's favorite milquetoast royal couple up to this week? Well, after trading their human breath for a hot tip from the proprietress of the diner from hell, Snow and Charming head to a "haunting booth" so that they can call up their baby in the non-underworld and say "hi." It's only a one-way call, but at least their child will faintly hear their ghostly voices on the wind and question his own sanity. Later, Henry the Storyteller confirms that their child did, in fact, hear their voices. And that's all that happens with Snow and Charming this week. Woo.
Love, Hate & Everything In Between
In the middle of terrorizing the Munchkins for their disloyalty, Zelena is interrupted by Hades, who appears in Munchkinville to offer his services. As a fellow villain, he claims to be a fan of her work and an enemy of all things good, including one Dorothy Gale. He promises Zelena to help her overcome her greatest deficit -- Oz's love Dorothy and hatred of Zelena -- so that she can achieve her goal of time travel. Obviously, Zelena plays hard to get and zaps back to her castle by herself.
Equally as obviously, Hades is there waiting for Zelena. After taunting her a bit with her self-pitying birthday cupcake, he fills her in on why he's really come looking for her. He heard Zelena's trying to travel through a time -- a near-impossible feat -- to seek revenge on her sister for not being sentenced to life as the hated sorceress in Oz. Turns out Hades has some sibling issues of his own. With the time-travel power, he'd also like to return to the place of his birth so that Zeus will end up the guarding the underworld while Hades becomes the god of everything else. On top of that, he also wants to restart his still heart by finding and kissing his "one true love." Since Zelena is the only person he knows more hated than him, she does seem to be the best candidate. She finally agrees to let Hades help her.
Plot Lightning Round
In a Storyteller trance, Henry wrote about Snow and Charming's dumb plan to contact their child. Surprise surprise: not even their friends care about Snow and Charming or their brood. They ask Henry if he can concentrate harder and write them a story worth reading about -- maybe one that helps them escape the underworld -- but Henry just throws a teen hissy and whines about the sanctity of his creative process. Henry: still the worst.
Belle having run off with her baby, Zelena shows up at the heroes' Hell-condo to ask for their assistance. They agree, but only if she promises not to do anything super-shady or evil, which you'd think would be a good thing to make everyone promise before doing anything on this show.
Belle, baby in hand, wanders into a random building -- which just happens to be where Hades has been keeping Rumple! Once he realizes why his portal didn’t work the way he had planned (because Zelena's unexpected third body), Rumple explains to Belle how he sold his soul and promised his second-born son to Hades. Belle points out that he only has the one kid, to which Rumple gestures to the baby growing in Belle's womb. She's initially thrilled until she realizes that her baby is has been promised to the dark one. Then she's not too thrilled.
Rumple says he'll use "all his powers" to defeat Hades, and explains to Belle that he's become Dark One again -- a new and improved Dark One! He has the confidence and bravery to use his powers in a way he couldn’t before. Belle isn't too pleased with this development, but Rumple mows right over her. He tells her she didn't fall in love with the man behind the beast -- she fell for him because he was the beast. If she can just get over him being evil incarnate, they'd have a really nice life together! Belle tells Rumple she won’t decide anything until he takes care of the whole "promised their child to the Greek God of the Underworld" thing.
Traipsing through the forest in search of Belle and the baby, Zelena kills time by inquiring as to what heinous non-D&D name Robin's saddled their baby with: "Brittany? Karen?" Robin says he hasn’t named her yet because he wants to get to know her first, like he's some commune hippie. Unfortunately, he hasn't had time to get to know her what with all the adventures he's had to go on, which is somehow Zelena's fault. Regina takes the opportunity to persuade her sister that embracing love and chivalry and all that hero nonsense will make her happier in the long run, but Zelena's not interested in discussing her moral alignment until they find her baby.
And look! They found her baby! Belle just happened to be wandering the same stretch of woods with Robin and Zelena's baby. Robin embraces his child, but when Zelena asks if she can feed her with the bottle she brought over from Storybrooke, they all look at her like this:
But she seems genuinely remorseful, so Robin hands her over. Everything's going great until Zelena's finger flashes green, indicating the return of her powers. Regina tells Zelena to give the baby back, but they've already made the mistake of handing the scorpion her frog. "Not ever," Zelena says before zapping them in the face and teleporting away. Unfortunately, once she finds a safe space to bond with her baby, she finds a scratch on the brat's face caused by her magic. And now her magic is gone again so she can't even fix it.
A Bicycle Built For Two Unhinged Sociopaths
Situation: Hades takes Flashback Zelena to the crash site where Dorothy first arrived in Oz to begin their search.
What makes it awkward? There, Hades pulls a bike from the wreckage and presents it to a skeptical Zelena. And then he rides the bike with Zelena sitting his lap and they giggle like schoolchildren together. Zelena yells, "It's like a broomstick with wheels!" It's...something.
How is order restored? Hades crashes the bike and they both tumble off, still giggling, landing like this.
Somehow they contain themselves from making sweet, evil love there on the forest ground. Hades tells Zelena all she has to do is bewitch the bike and it will take them straight to Dorothy. So...okay then.
Fight! Fight! Fight!
Dorothy vs. The Witch
Hades and Zelena ride their whimsical bicycle of love to the cottage where Dorothy and CGI Scarecrow are hiding out. Now that they've ridden a bike together, if you know what I mean -- I mean they've ridden a bike together -- Hades professes his newfound, manufactured infatuation with her. She gives him a sexy smirk, implying that she might be open to taking a tandem Hoverboard ride with him in the future, before marching up to the cottage. Immediately, Zelena hexes Dorothy frozen, and then plunges her hand into CGI Scarecrow's head and plucks out his brain, killing him. (I know he's just a CGI scarecrow, but seriously, it's weirdly gruesome.) Dorothy tells Zelena she can do whatever she wants to her, but that she'll never be afraid of the witch. Now that she has the brain, though, Zelena no longer has any use for Dorothy. She tells Dorothy she would kill her, but instead, she wants to keep her alive so that everyone in Oz will know Dorothy failed and can no longer help them.
Right. You know how else they would have known that? If Dorothy were dead.
Winner: Dorothy, because Zelena is bad at her job.
Wrap It Up
The heroes search through a neighborhood, calling out for Zelena and the baby. After realizing that she can't keep her child safe with (or from) her magic, Zelena emerges from a house and hands the baby back over to Robin. She confesses to knowing why Hades wants the baby: so that he can use its baby innocence to time travel. No joke. Distraught and alone, Zelena walks back into the house.
Back at Hero HQ (Hell Division), everyone coos over the nameless baby, who we learn is nameless because "Hades can do stuff with names." To keep her completely safe, Regina suggests that Robin take her to the forest, the only place he's "ever truly felt at home."
Then, fucking Henry runs downstairs to tell everyone how he wrote about Neil hearing Snow and Charming's ghost-o-gram. Fucking great, Henry. Snow announces that now she's ready to escape Hell, because I guess she was all "Que Sera Sera" about it before.
In Flashback Oz, Zelena returns to her castle to find Hades preparing her a victory dinner. She cautiously asks whether this doubles as a farewell dinner, and he tells her no. "When we were on that bicycle, and I had my arms around you, I felt something I haven't felt in eons," he tells her. "My heart fluttered." Cue a classroom of third-graders putting their index fingers in their mouths and screaming, "BARF!" Hades makes to kiss Zelena, but she suddenly decides that she's had enough. She gets out of her chair and accuses him of manipulating her into restarting his inactive heart so that he can proceed to steal her CGI Scarecrow brain and use the time travel for himself. And even if really did love her, she thinks he wouldn't want her to enact her revenge because...love? I think? It's all very confusing but Hades takes the hint and leaves -- but not before warning her that she'll regret her mistake. Like you say to the people you love!
Meeting in the middle of a Purgatorybrooke intersection, Hades and Zelena are reunited after all these years. He assures her that his bicycle-fueled feelings back in Oz were genuine and that he was only trying to steal her baby so that she could have it back, not so that he could use it to time travel and kill Zeus. He turned Purgatory into Storybrooke for her so that she could live the dark version of her sister's life, which she's always envied. Zelena actually seems to trust Hades, but now she's pissed she handed over her kid to the heroes in order to protect her from him. He offers to help get her back, but Zelena says she has to do it herself. She turns to leave, which is when Hades tells her that he discovered the date of her birthday, which he "tortured out of a miller's daughter."