Once Upon a Time recap: 'Rocky Road' (2023)

Once Upon A Time Recap

Once Upon a Time recap: 'Rocky Road' (1)

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Once Upon a Time recap: 'Rocky Road' (2)

Once Upon a Time

S4 E3

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All right, so I was wrong: Elizabeth Mitchell is not playing Elsa’s birth mother after all. (Provided the Snow Queen is telling the truth about who she is, anyway.) Tonight’s episode does, however, reveal the true identity of Mitchell’s super top-secret character: She says that she’s Elsa and Anna’s aunt, their mother’s sister. And because we still don’t know her proper name, I’m gonna go ahead and start calling her Queen Frostine.

Like Elsa and Anna, Frostine and her sister, Queen Idun, are a blonde and a redhead, respectively. Like Elsa and Anna, they seem to have had a particularly close relationship, although one can bring snowmen to life and the other can only befriend them. And like Elsa and Anna, it appears that ice magic may have driven a wedge between the two: In the night’s second big revelation, Frostine tells Elsa that Anna trapped her own sister within that magical urn. Considering the flavor of Frostine’s motives (read: ulterior), it’s no stretch to guess that she may have put her niece in the urn—and that Frostine’s own sister, the now-dead Idun, may have trapped her own sister within that same object years ago.

And so Once continues to play its favorite game: Families Are Complicated, Y’all! A new baddie who’s secretly related to one of our heroes is hardly uncharted territory, but at least Mitchell’s presence is livening up the Frozen arc. And while I’m still not sure that Once has done enough to justify devoting this much time to characters from a movie that was released less than a year ago, season 4’s third episode did at least have a little more time to spare for the folks who have been around since the pre-“Let It Go” days. (Though we still don’t know what the deal is with that damn Fantasia hat.)

The fairybacks, however, are still a Fro-zone. Tonight’s center on Elsa and Kristoff—specifically, what happens to them after Anna leaves for Myst Mist Haven. They’ve heard no word from the plucky redhead, which is worrisome—and even worse, they’ve just learned that an army is amassing in the Southern Mountains. Its leader: Evil Prince Hans’ Muttonchops, which doubles as the name of my pick for the next Kentucky Derby.

Hans, you may recall, is the stealth antagonist of the movie Frozen. In the film, he wins over our hearts by sweeping Anna off her feet and finishing her sandwiches; shortly before its climax, he reveals that he’s been planning all along to marry Anna, kill her queenly sister, and take over Arendelle for himself. (Er… spoilers? I guess?) Though that scheme ultimately got foiled, in Onceworld, he’s plotting to seize the kingdom once more—and again, his plan rests on first neutralizing Elsa. This time, he intends to use a MacGuffin with which we’re already familiar: the silver urn that will, eventually, end up in the vault where Rumpelstiltskin stores his various gadgets, gizmos, whosits, and whatsits. (You want thingamabobs? Sorry, dearie, he’s fresh out.)

The Antifreeze Urn, wouldn’tcha know, just so happens to be chilling (sorry) in the Caves of Contrivance, a short journey from Elsa’s castle. So she and Kristoff head off to fetch it, bonding a little bit along the way. (It’s important to know that despite OUAT‘s weird vendetta against adoption and the foster care system, Kristoff, a human who was literally raised by trolls, seems pretty well-adjusted.)

NEXT: Down here at the pawn shop/It’s a nifty way to shop

It’s not long before they find the urn—and Elsa discovers that it’s got something rune-y written on it. (Maybe it says “I’m Shakin'”?) Though she could read her mother’s runic diary, these Futhark symbols are giving her some trouble—and she can’t resist the temptation to find out what they say, since it could answer some of the questions she has about the source of her powers.

And of course, that’s when Hans’ muttonchops show up, ready to grab the urn and suck Elsa in like a reverse snowblower. There’s a brief battle, but the bad guy gets the upper hand when he holds a knife to Kristoff’s neck; Elsa hands the urn over, then just stands there obligingly when Hans opens it, almost as though she’s forgotten that she has the power to do basically anything, including CREATE LIFE OUT OF THIN-ASS AIR. Anyway. Hans hits a snag when he learns that the urn wasn’t actually empty—it contained an Alex Mack-esque blob that soon resolves itself into none other than Frostine, who easily turns him into a Hansicle before heading back to Elsa’s for a night of bonding. Ladies and gentlemen, meet the ultimate Cool Aunt.

In the present day, of course, Elsa has no idea how she ended up stuck in the urn, or that Frostine even exists. (As Rumpel so eloquently puts it: Memory loss is “an all-too-common affliction around these parts.”) She gets the memo pretty quickly, though, when there’s another incidence of evil ice magic: Someone’s put a nasty freezing hex on Maid Marian, the same kind that hit Anna in Frozen. As far as Elsa knows, the only thing that can reverse the spell is an act of true love—and if recent Disney properties have taught us anything, it’s that this act probably won’t take the form of a smooch from a handsome dude. Though this doesn’t stop Robin Hood from giving it a shot anyway.

You’d think that this would be when the MBC and company summon adorable little Roland Hood to wake up the mother he thought he’d lost forever. You would, however, be wrong, because the idea doesn’t even come up. Instead, Emma and Charming set off to look for whoever cursed Marian, while Hook and Elsa head to Rumpelstiltskin’s pawn shop for answers.

Both parties end up tracking down Frostine, though they take different paths. Emma and Charming’s is led by none other than new series regular Will Scarlet—a.k.a. the Knave of Hearts, a.k.a. the only survivor of the train wreck that was Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, a.k.a. the ever-charming Michael Socha. After they come upon him in Camp Merry Men, Will informs them that while engaging in a little light looting, he noticed that the inside of the local ice cream shop was perfectly frosty even though Storybrooke’s electricity had gone out. Sure enough, he’s right that Frostine’s been keeping her wares chilly by using ice magic—though Scarlet scampers off before Emma and Charming can thank him. Or, you know, arrest him.

Hook, meanwhile, blackmails Rumpel into helping him—he correctly guesses that the Dark One still hasn’t given up his real dagger to Belle—then gets him to create a spell-trail that leads Hook and Elsa directly to Frostine. (Having set the first of many evil plans into motion, the queen is celebrating by putting on her best Evil Snow Gown and building an ice castle in the woods. As you do.)

NEXT: The Rumpelstiltskin of it all

Elsa is spellbound to see a woman who’s so like her: “She doesn’t look evil,” the other queen breathes. She changes her tune when Frostine freezes Hook in place and threatens to spear him with the Icicles of Damocles. Frostine also admits to freezing Marian’s heart. See, according to Frostine, muggles always grow to fear Snow Wizards. And in order to prove this truism to Elsa, she’s going to straight-up murder Hook, then watch as the townsfolk blame Elsa for his death. Sorry, Frostine, you just got downgraded from Cool Aunt to Crazy Aunt.

Alas, her wicked scheme is foiled by Emma, whose magic (when she decides to actually, you know, employ it) turns out to be a match for Frostine’s own. Frostine manages to escape without a trace before they can apprehend her—but at least we get to close out on a passionate Captain Swan kiss. Oh, and further evidence of the plot thickening (because it’s getting colder) (do you get it) (Frozen Frozen Frozen): Frostine has a clandestine meeting with Rumpelstiltskin—who a) totally knows who she is and b) knows that she and Emma have encountered each other before, though the savior can’t recall their meeting. Someone’s gotta start stocking Sneezy’s pharmacy with ginkgo biloba.


— Marian, unfortunately, is a solid ice statue at the end of the episode—though she’s still alive, because Regina had the foresight to remove her heart. That’s gonna end well.

— It will, however, probably not end as poorly as it would have if Robin hadn’t admitted to Regina that he couldn’t kiss Marian back to life because he’s in love with someone else. Swoon! Maybe they can just cast Marian as an ice sculpture at their wedding.

— Also, Henry’s officially going to help Regina find whoever wrote his fairy tale book. Wanna bet it was translated from a bunch of runes?

— Oh, and because Storybrooke don’t know nothin’ ’bout the democratic process, Snow, apparently, really is the mayor now, and Regina is totally fine with it. So things do change!

— Emma tells us not to forget about her “superpower,” even though she forgets about it, like, every other episode.

— Snow as mayor is worth it if only to hear her try to put a positive spin on little snags like that pesky ice wall: “For the time being, it does surround the entire town.”

— You’d think that just once, someone would pull Grumpy aside and say, “Listen, buddy—you’re awfully quick to stir up unruly mobs. Maybe we should think this one through for a few minutes?”

— We still don’t know how Will Scarlet ended up in Storybrooke; when last we saw his character, he was living happily ever after with his true love Anastasia in Wonderland.

— Emma correctly points out that everyone she’s had a relationship with since Once began—Sheriff Skinnyjeans, Neal, even Christopher Gorham the Flying Monkey—has ended up dead. Suddenly, her skittishness around Hook is making a lot more sense.

— Best line of the night goes to Hook, trying to explain a cell phone to Elsa: “It’s a device, for… talking.”

— He has some competition from an excited Elsa, bonding with Crazy Aunt Frostine: “Have you ever made a snowman and brought it to life? It’s the best!”

— Both of these, however, may pale in comparison to something Emma apparently says to Hook next week, after he goes through a magical rejuvenation: “So what do I call you now? Captain Hand?”

(Video) » OUAT | 4x03 - "Rocky Road" | Recap

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Once Upon a Time recap: 'Rocky Road' (26)

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Once Upon a Time

Everything you’ve ever read about fairy tales is true—the residents of Storybrooke are living proof.

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What happens in Season 4 Episode 3 in Once Upon a Time? ›

Episode Info

The town blames Elsa when a fatal icy spell is cast on Marian, not knowing that another resident has the same powers; Mary Margaret struggles to balance motherhood and leading the town.

Does hook come back from the underworld? ›

Episode no. In this episode, Zelena redeems after finding out that Hades tricked her. Meanwhile, in the Underworld, King Arthur shows up and helps Hook find out about Hades' weakness. In the end, Hook comes back to life.

Does hook come back to life in season 5? ›

Hook is eventually resurrected, but a bid from Mr. Gold to capture all of Storybrooke's magic results in the arrival of Mr. Hyde and refugees from the Land of Untold Stories to Storybrooke, as well as the separation of Regina Mills and her evil self, who wages war on Regina.

Does hook come back to life in season 6? ›

Snow turns that pixie dust over to Emma so that she can find Hook, hoping she'll find a way to wake the two of them later. Emma uses it, and right as Hook and Tiger Lily are about to die, she makes her way to them, sets them free, and gets Hook back to Storybrooke.

What happens in season 4 episode 5 in Once Upon a Time? ›

Regina reluctantly teams up with Emma to search for the Snow Queen after Sidney discovers her whereabouts, as flashbacks show a young Emma befriend a girl who, like her, is a runaway orphan.

What happens in season 4 episode 7 on Once Upon a Time? ›

Storyline. Emma captures the Snow Queen and interrogates her at the sheriff's station and Regina and Robin's relationship grows increasingly complex, as flashbacks detail information about the Snow Queen's life in Arendelle.

Is Hook a lost boy? ›

Among the many changes that Peter Pan & Wendy makes to its two source materials, the movie gives the dreaded pirate captain a backstory that is very much intertwined with Pan's. It turns out that Hook - or, rather, James - was the first Lost Boy that lived with Peter in Never Land.

Why does Hook turn evil? ›

In J. M. Barrie's original work, Hook is portrayed as an overly genteel Eton graduate who is obsessed with “good form”, and so the capricious and rather “cheeky” nature of Peter Pan drives him to vicious distraction.

Who does Robin end up with Once Upon a Time? ›

Robin Hood is engaged to Zelena, and eventually marries her.

Who is the villain in season 6 of Once Upon a Time? ›

Gideon (Once Upon a Time) | Villains Wiki | Fandom.

What happened to Emma in season 5 of Once Upon a Time? ›

Though Gold (Robert Carlyle) ultimately killed the Black Fairy, breaking the curse, the Final Battle was not abated — the Black Fairy had ordered Gideon (Giles Matthey) to kill Emma, who refused to murder an innocent, thus she sacrificed herself.

Why did Hook turn on Peter? ›

In subsequent Disney animation, Hook is voiced by Corey Burton. Hook seeks revenge on Peter Pan for having fed the crocodile his left hand and refuses to leave Neverland prior to this revenge.

Is Hook in season 7 of Once Upon a Time? ›

The Wish Realm version of Killian Jones, also known as Captain Hook or simply Hook, is the main character in the seventh season of ABC's Once Upon a Time.

Why isn t Emma in the last season of Once Upon a Time? ›

I was away from the family and my friends and I was not feeling like it was the right thing for my life to be so far away from my life. So I made the decision on that one to do what I felt was right for my life.” Morrison has moved on to writing and directing, among other things.

Is Emma Swan in season 7 of Once Upon a Time? ›

Emma Swan is a fictional character in ABC's television series Once Upon a Time and the protagonist of seasons 1-7, aka all seasons. She is portrayed by Jennifer Morrison as an adult, by Abby Ross as a teenager, and by Mckenna Grace as a child.

What is the saddest death in Once Upon a Time? ›

Neal's Death

Some fans might disagree, but losing Neal/Baelfire was arguably the most tragic death in the show. Neal was Henry's father, Rumplestiltskin's son, and Emma's first love. Henry spent most of his life without a father and Rumplestiltskin spent centuries trying to reunite and reconcile with his son.

Was Emma pregnant in Once Upon a Time? ›

He then aimed to derail Henry's pursuit of Cinderella and take claim the other Hook's life and wife. But once the news that Emma had been waiting to share with Henry got out — she is pregnant with her and Hook's first child together — the pretender pirate had a change of poisoned heart and aborted his plan.

What happens on season 6 episode 10 of Once Upon a Time? ›

In this episode, when the Evil Queen uses Aladdin to make Emma's secret wish that she wasn't the Savior a reality, Regina tries to save her, while Gold and Belle learn about the dangers awaiting Gideon.

What happens in season 5 episode 8 of Once Upon a Time? ›

It turns out that Hook was fatally wounded by Excalibur, and in order to save him, Emma tethered his life to Excalibur, which turned him into another Dark One. Emma tells him that she's sorry and says she had no choice.

What happens in season 6 of Once Upon a Time? ›

As dark and light collide, a new, and darker curse is unleashed, leading to the fall of all the realms of story. The final battle is fought and won, leading to the heroes earning their happy beginnings. In the far future, a new adventure begins for an adult Henry and his daughter Lucy.

What happens in season 6 episode 21 of Once Upon a Time? ›

Episode Info

Henry awakens to a cursed Storybrooke where Emma is in the mental hospital, and the Black Fairy is the new mayor; Gold tries to find out what has happened to Belle; Snow, Charming, Regina, Zelena and Hook try to escape the crumbling Fairy Tale Land.

How did Hook not age? ›

Hook didn't age because he went to Neverland 300 years ago and then spent the 28 yrs during the curse in the Safe Haven that Cora made to protect part of the EF. Cora didn't age because even in the Safe Haven, time was frozen.

Is Peter Pan the true villain? ›

In practically every incarnation, Peter Pan is the hero of the story, and the recognized villain is almost always Peter's sworn enemy, the feared pirate Captain Hook. The story of Disney's Peter Pan is decidedly more child-friendly than Barrie's original story, but the general premise remains the same.

Why can't the Lost Boys fly? ›

3. Fairy Dust was added later for health and safety reasons. Originally Peter and the Lost Boys could fly unaided, but after several reports of children injuring themselves attempting to fly from their beds, JM Barrie added Fairy Dust as a necessary factor for flying.

What is Peter Pan disorder? ›

Peter Pan Syndrome is a popular psychology term to describe people who find it difficult to grow up. They often have challenges managing adult responsibilities and maintaining adult relationships. Having difficulty with adult responsibilities can affect many people.

Why does Tinkerbell hate Wendy? ›

Personality. As a fairy, Tinker Bell is stated to be so tiny she only has room for one emotion at a time. This later causes her to try and kill Wendy, as jealousy is the only emotion she feels at the time.

Why does Peter Pan never grow up? ›

This disparity of thought between Peter and the children suggests that Peter is 'the only child who never grows up' because he is the only child who holds an unmitigated faith in make-believe. Another typically-childish trait of Peter is his cockiness, the trait which Captain Hook dreads the most in the boy.

What happens to Regina after Robin dies? ›

After Robin's untimely death, Regina is in a dark place, but she refuses to give up hope. As she tells Snow White that she believes Robin is at peace, the feather from his bow and arrow is shown floating in the background as a confirmation that he has moved on.

Does Regina ever find love? ›

Regina also begins a relationship with Robin Hood, who is revealed by Tinker Bell to be Regina's true love.

Who is Robin in love with? ›

Robin also seems to be very devoted to Luffy, as he is the only person whom she wants to get stronger for. This shows how great her dedication to her captain has become after the Enies Lobby Arc. Upon learning of Ace's death, Robin was very shocked and became greatly concerned about Luffy's wellbeing.

Who is the true villain in Once Upon a Time? ›

Rumplestiltskin, also known as the Dark One, Mr. Gold in Storybrooke, and the Weaver in Hyperion Heights, is the central antagonist of the series Once Upon a Time.

Who is the most hated character in Once Upon a Time? ›

Lucy. While there are a lot of Hyperion Heights characters that fans didn't love very much, Lucy is probably the most annoying and disliked. Her, and her mother Jacinda, but she counts more as a main character. Lucy supported the story, much like Henry did in the first season, pushing Emma's progress forward.

Who is the most powerful being in Once Upon a Time? ›

Strongest: Blue Fairy

Time and time again, the Blue Fairy proved to be one of the strongest people in the history of the show. Though she's supposedly the most powerful creature in all the land, she is not without limitations-- or mistakes as it was she who ultimately instilled the idea of the Storybrooke curse.

Why is Snow and Charming not in season 7? ›

After the season six finale, five more actors followed suit when their contracts ended. The other characters who will be gone next season are Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin), Prince Charming (Josh Dallas), Henry (Jared S.

What happened to Emma in season 7 of Once Upon a Time? ›

Ultimately, Wish Hook discovered Emma (Jennifer Morrison) was pregnant so he let her and Hook-Prime return to Storybrooke to get their happy ending, while Wish Hook and Regina stayed to help Henry on his new journey, which explains how Hook gets to stay on the show despite Emma's departure.

Who is Emma Swan's love interest? ›

Emma is in love with Killian, proving she is his true love. They also travel to a secluded area filled with flowers. Emma is also desperate to save Killian that she turns him into a dark one but later realizes that the man she loved died in Camelot.

Why do Peter Pan and Hook hate each other? ›

Captain Hook is Peter Pan's enemy because he cut his hand off—simple. Do we really need a whole movie where they're allies, but keep making winking references to their future enmity for the audience's sake?

Why did Pan cut off Hook's hand? ›

Answer and Explanation: In J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan; or, the Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up, Peter Pan fought Captain Hook and cut off his hand because the Lost Boys had dared him to: "Fight Hook, you say," He pondered, and touched his chin, "A dare, you say."

Did Peter Pan love Wendy? ›

Answer and Explanation: Peter Pan loves both Wendy and Jane, but only in the way that a son loves a mother. First, Peter has Wendy come with him to Neverland to be mother to his Lost Boys. When she tells Peter she has developed romantic feelings for him, he tells her that he loves her as if she is his mother.

What happens at the end of season 4 of Once Upon a Time? ›

“Thanks to the hero Regina's sacrifice, Isaac's villainous work was undone,” he scribbles. With that, everyone awakens in Storybrooke, exactly where they were when Isaac's spell was cast—and in the same condition, meaning Regina's not dying after all.

Who is the villain in season 4 of Once Upon a Time? ›

Existing fictional characters introduced to the series during the season include the main antagonists for the two volumes, the Snow Queen and the Queens of Darkness (a triad of villains including returning character Maleficent, and new characters Cruella de Vil and Ursula), alongside Elsa, Anna, Kristoff, the ...

Who was the evilest in Once Upon a Time? ›

Regina Mills (Lana Parrilla)

Regina Mills/The Evil Queen is the one who cast the Dark Curse, bringing everyone to Storybrooke and erasing their memories. Arguably, the entire run of the series is about her road to redemption, but when she was bad, she was very, very bad.

Who dies in season 5 of Once Upon a Time? ›

Hades (Greg Germann)

The god of the Underworld did not truly die until season five, when his love, Zelena, stabbed him with the Olympian crystal to save Regina.

Who is the father of Emma's baby in Once Upon a Time? ›

Hope Swan-Jones is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. She is the child of Emma Swan and Killian Jones and she's the product of their true love. She's also half-sister of Henry Mills and Henry (Wish Relam), and granddaughter of Snow White and Prince Charming.

Do Captain Hook and Emma have a baby? ›

Once they are brought back to the present, Emma gives birth to a baby girl named Hope and, along with Hook, attends Regina's coronation where she is crowned "The Good Queen" of all the realms.

Who does Emma end up marrying in Once Upon a Time? ›

Emma and Killian move in together, but Emma's uncertain future made their future even more precious since she finds out that she's meant to die in the final battle. They over this by focusing on their future together. Eventually he proposes to her with her fathers blessing. They get married.

Who does Regina end up with at the end of Once Upon a Time? ›

As Parrilla notes, Regina's happy ending does not include a love interest, but the character was briefly reunited with Robin Hood (Sean Maguire) in a dream during the finale — read more about that scene in our interview with executive producers Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis here.

What is the ending explained in Once Upon a Time? ›

The final timeframe is one that might ring a bell: August 8, 1969. In reality, this was the night when Manson's crew—Tex Watson, Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkel, and Leslie Van Houten—ransacked Tate's house, brutally murdering her along with Sebring and three others, and writing on the walls in pig's blood.

Does Regina end up with Robin Hood in Once Upon a Time? ›

Later, Regina goes to the camp and without warning kisses Robin Hood passionately, and he kisses her back. Regina eventually defeats Zelena and gets her heart back, then she and Robin continue their relationship.

Who is the evil queen sleeping with in Once Upon a Time? ›

However, Regina has her own visions of the near future and is secretly in a relationship with the stable boy, Daniel. One day, Regina saves a young girl on a runaway horse, only to discover that the girl is the king's daughter, Snow White.

Who cast the fourth curse in Once Upon a Time? ›

The fourth Dark Curse was cast by Killian Jones, also known as Captain Hook. Since he was the Dark One, when he crushed Merlin's heart, it was also Merlin's true love Nimue crushing it as Nimue was the first Dark One.

Who killed Robin in Once Upon a Time? ›

Robin was killed by Hades' (Greg Germann) Olympian crystal.


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