Once Upon A Time Recap S03E16: It’s Not Easy Being Green

A baby was dropped from a cyclone, and picked by a couple. The woman thought the baby was beautiful, but the man saw that the baby had powers, knowing that the baby was not like them. The wife was insistent, and kept the normal looking baby, taking Zelena to Oz.

The people of Storybrook mourn Neil’s passing. They lower his casket into the ground, and there’s heart break all around. Regina looks over at Henry, who still doesn’t know that Neil was his father. Hook watches the dirt fall. Rumple sits in his cage a broken man. One by one they drop the dirt upon Neil grave and turn away, Emma hesitates before doing the same. Rumple fought so hard to come to this world to be with his son, and now he is gone. Zelena asks if it was worth it, every bit of it was. Rumple tells her that he was family, something she knows nothing about.

Past, Zelena, still fair skinned, shaves her father. She nicks him with the razor, and uses magic to grab a towel. He jumps away from her, calling her wicked. She has no control over her magic, and he will not help her get control. In fear, he tells her that she is not his child. With her mother gone, he admits the truth, that they found her. Zelena is broken hearted, saying that she would rather be wicked than a drunk. He drinks because of her he says. Since she’s so much trouble, she leaves, off to see the wizard so he can help her find a family that wants her.

Emma shoots darts, hitting the center. Hook offers to paint a bull’s eye on the wicked witches back. He knows that she’s hurting, but he tells her that there are better ways to mourn Baelfire, his way requires rum, but Emma chooses to stick with anger. She told Henry that she will find his father’s killer, and she plans to. Hook offers to talk to Henry, to help make him feel better, to tell him stories of his father when he was the same age. Emma is thankful, but warns Hook to be careful with Zelena still on the loose.

Regina watches Robin, warily. Tink notices that Robin had the prophesized lion’s tattoo, but Regina is concerned about more than love at the moment. Robin comes over with drinks, apologizing if he upset Regina before. Regina introduces Robin and Tinkerbell, she wasn’t upset, just on the trail of a clue. Robin leaves, and Tink asks why she chased Robin away. Tink reminds her that had she given love a chance before maybe her life would have turned out less disastrous, Regina takes offense and Tink leaves her to her misery. The Charmings check in on Emma when Zelena arrives offering condolences. She wishes to make a speech, being responsible and all. Zelena hasn’t come for the baby today, but to pay a visit to her little sister, Regina. Everyone is shocked by the news, Regina included. Zelena announces that Cora lied, that they’re half sisters. Zelena has come bearing gifts, she’ll give her the day to get her matters in order, and at sundown, there’ll be a wicked show down. Neither girl is use to losing, but tonight one will.

Hook takes Henry down to the warf, another boat. There seems to be a theme when his mother is blowing him off Henry says, and it involves boats. Hook wants to share with him stories of his father before he met Emma, and Henry is interested in what he has to say. Henry climbs aboard.

David asks if Cora ever mentioned another child, and Regina is pretty sure she’d remember a sibling. Emma asks if there is any reason that Zelena would want her dead, but Regina can’t think of a reason. Tink and everyone else points out that Regina has a way of making enemies, and Regina isn’t planning on sitting on her hands. She’s going to find out what Zelena thinks she did to her.

Zelena arrives to visit the wizard. The guards let her pass, and she approaches the throne. The wizard has been expecting her he says. He sees all, his is Oz the great and terrible. He will show her what she seeks to know, but tells her that it won’t be easy for her. He shows her Cora, tells her that Cora abandoned her and a cyclone took her from that land to Oz. Zelena was left behind because she couldn’t give Cora what she wanted, royalty, and shows her her sister Regina. Regina became Queen. She sees Rumpelstiltskin, and Oz tells her that Regina too has the gift of magic, but she has been unable to development though he has been trying to teach her. Zelena’s jealous flares, Rumpelstiltskin should be teaching her. She offers to pay the wizard anything if he can get her there. He places silver shoes on her feet, they will let her go wherever she desires just by clicking her heels three times. In return he asks that she bring him something of Rumple’s. He warns her to be careful and wary of wanting what she cannot have.

Zelena clicks her heels and heads over to Regina’s. She becomes angered over all that Regina has. Rumplestilskin sees Zelena’s magic, and mistakens her for Regina at first. She proclaims herself Cora’s first born, and he doesn’t believe her at first, until he tests her and finds that she is who she says she is.

Snow questions if Zelena is telling the truth, but Regina hasn’t found anything to confirm or deny her claims. Regina finds a letter in Cora’s things, and Zelena is her sister. She doesn’t share the rest of the findings with Emma and Snow. It’s her fight and she’ll handle it.

Charming stakes out the location where witch fight will be. Emma tells him that Zelena warned against outside interference, and doesn’t want to take any chances. Belle is surprised that Zelena spoke the truth about her and Regina being sisters, but Emma tells them of the letter. Regina disappeared, and Tink wonders if they should go find her. Emma does plan to assist Regina, but first they have to take Gold out of the equation to give Regina a fighting chance. Belle hopes to get through to Rumple without the dagger.

Regina pours over her letter in the woods, when Robin comes across her. Robin isn’t there for a pep talk, but  to make sure Zelena wasn’t creating more flying monkeys in the woods. Robin is worried about her, and pick pockets her. He thinks deep down she wants to talk, and asks if he can read it. Regina lets him. It’s a letter to Cora, a complimentary letter about her first born, about her beauty, her power. She thought it was about her, but now realizes that it was about Zelena. Rumpelstiltskin thought she was the better witch, and Regina fears that there is no way that she could the fight.
Past. Zelena and Rumple walk in the woods. Zelena remains surprised that Cora never mentioned her, but seriously what would she say. So I had this other baby, but I left her in the woods and a cyclone took her away, oh well I have a future queen too. Rumple never suspected. He’s been working on a curse that he’s been working on for a long time, and he foresaw that it would be cast by Cora’s daughter, and until today he thought it would be cast by Regina, hence the training. Rumple wishes to see what Zelena can do. He blindfolds her, setting her up for a test, and sends her on a hide and seek game. He tells her to use emotion to unleash the anger, and she catches him quickly, with so much pent up anger. He tells her to think of happiness to reign in the anger, but he cannot give her that memory. He tells her his own story, being abandoned as well, but after every job there were meat pies, and his warm belly helped him forget who he really was. Zelena find her moment, the moment she felt like she wasn’t unwanted, when Rumple agreed to train her.

Tink and Belle head to Zelena’s, she’s gone, and Belle heads down to Rumple’s cage. He tries to send her away, scared what Zelena will make him do to her. But Belle believes, and tells him that all he has to do is try, to take her hand. He takes her hand, but as he draws close he tells her to run, to go. Zelena lurks in the shadows. Belle runs, and Rumple gives chase. Belle warns Tink, Emma and David that it was a trap, Zelena is just toying with them. Gold delivers Zelena’s warning that she will face Regina without interference, that the next time they try to stop her, he will kill them.

Henry ties all the knots in Hook’s book. He wants to know about his dad, but Hook isn’t quite ready yet. He shows Henry a sailing navigation tool, and how to use it. Hook once taught Neil how to use one once, and he plans to do the same with Henry. Henry stumbles over the fact that Hook seems to be the same age as his dad, that the more he learns about him, the less things make sense. Henry doesn’t want to learn how to navigate, but to hear a real story about him. He knows his mother is trying to protect him but he can’t feel anything about him being gone if he doesn’t know anything about when he was here. Hook understands that sentiment. He tells Henry not the how, but why he taught Neil to sail, because he had just lost his father. Hook thought the sea would help him lose his sorrow. There are parallels, Hook tells him, Henry has a lot in common with his father.

Zelena finds the proper attire for her witch attire, amulet and hat and all.

Past. Zelena makes Rumple a meat pie, but he tells her that she cannot stay, he has a lesson to teach with Regina. Zelena gives him quite the pout, upset that he’s still training her. She tells him that he doesn’t need Regina, that she’s more powerful, and going to cast his curse. Gold cautions her, reminding her of her father’s words. And warns her that her insides are starting to show, she’s tuning green with envy, literally.

The town is gathering at the scene of the witch-down. Charming wants to get everyone out of danger, but Zelena wants an audience. She threatens if Regina doesn’t show in five minutes she’ll let the dark one off his leash. Time is up, and Zelena asks Rumple who he wants to kill first. Emma steps in, wishing to give Zelena an alternative fight, but Zelena doesn’t want to fight her even if she is the savior. Zelena uses Rumple’s power to knock Emma back. Regina steps forward arriving fashionably late. She accepts that they shared a mother, but still doesn’t know what she did to her. Zelena is upset that Regina was even bored, and Regina slugs her.

Past. Zelena watches Regina brush her hair when she springs from the shadows with a razor in her hand. She doesn’t think that Regina deserves her life, Rumple’s teaching or their mother and when she stabs her, Regina disappears in a puff of green smoke. It’s Rumple. Envy makes people do crazy things he muses. She was tricked, and she failed his test. Her actions disqualified herself. Casting the curse comes with a steep price, she would have to give up the thing she loved the most, and that thing is him. Rumple reasons that he has the affect on people, but it doesn’t change the fact that she loves him, however much she protests her actions say different. That love makes her too dangerous, and therefore Regina has that job. Zelena’s green spreads further. He tells her unless she can take him to a land without magic, she’s of no use, but she can. She still has the shoes, but she isn’t interested in helping him anymore because he chose Regina. The only way he can have to shoes is if he kills her, and he plans to. She disappears on him, taught too well. She plans to see Rumple again, and vows that next time he will chose her.

Regina mocks Zelena’s jealousy, and brings down a street light. Zelena knocks it away. Regina got everything that she always wanted and she never deserved it. Zelena throws Regina into a nearby Neon, but Regina gets right back up, fireball in hand. Zelena puts the fireball out, everything that Rumple taught Regina he taught Zelena too, but Zelena was the better student. Zelena throws Regina through the clock in the clocktower. The Storybrook citizens watch with horror. Regina taunts her, tells her to kill her, but Zelena wants to destroy not kill. She plans to take Regina’s heart. She thrusts her hand to steal Regina’s heart, but it’s not there. Cora taught Regina to never bring her heart to a witch fight, and Regina throws that lesson in Zelena’s face. Zelena leaves empty handed, and flies off on her broom. Emma, Charming and Snow find Regina still alive. She wasn’t defeated. Charming asks what Zelena would want the heart for, and Regina knows that she stole Charming’s courage too. She’s collecting ingredients, but they have no clue what for. They’ve already lost their memories, and Snow wonders what else she could do.

Regina runs into the forest. She left Robin to protect her heart. She needed to find the one thing that she had that Zelena didn’t, her heartless mother. She stares at his lion tattoo as he hands her back her heart. Zelena is right about one thing, that she doesn’t always realize what she has when it’s right in front of her. She asks him to hold onto her heart for awhile longer. He questions her trusting a thief like him, but she tells him that you can’t steal something that has been given. He takes the heart, and reminds her that she still owes him a drink.

Hook returns Henry home to Emma. Emma tells Hook that Regina survived against Zelena, and thanks Hook. Hook tells her that she needs to tell Henry the truth about his father, that she cannot take Henry back to new York when this is all over, and pretend that none of it is real. Emma just thanks him again.

Zelena locks Rumple back into his cage. He taunts her about the meat pie. Zelena admits that Regina is clever, but knows its only a matter of time until she finds Regina’s heart. Rumple tells her that whatever twisted curse she has planned won’t change anything, that even if he had to do it all over again, he’d still chose Regina. Zelena tells him to just wait and see. She’s not casting a curse, but a second chance.

Zelena went back to Oz, throwing the guards aside. She asked the wizard to take her back into time, back to when her mother abandoned her. Oz laughed at her request, even his power had it’s limits. She pulled aside the curtain to find the wizard, it’s her flying monkey, Walsh! He admits that he’s just a circus conman, from Kansas. Zelena is angered that he’s not a real wizard. He tells her that its all part of the act, but the things that he collects are real, the shoes were real they took her to the Enchanted Forest. She feels duped, used. He tells her that what she seeks doesn’t exist, no magic is that strong. She has no use for him as he is. She needs a minion, and seeing the circus poster behind him gets the idea to change him into a flying monkey. If she is going to change the past, she has work to do. She uses the wizards floor to spy on her sister, hearing Rumple tell her that she’s the best pupil that he’s ever had. Her envy takes over turning the rest of her skin green, as she vows to complete her mission, change the past, and ensure that Regina was never born.


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