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Home TV RECAP: ONCE’S “Smash the Mirror” Puts Storybrooke in Peril

TV RECAP: ONCE’S “Smash the Mirror” Puts Storybrooke in Peril

BY The Screen Spy Team

Published 7 years ago

By Meredith Loftus

A two-hour installment of Once Upon a Time was exactly what the show and its audience needed. “Smash the Mirror” housed various plot lines, tied up loose ends and set the stage for last three episodes of the year. The two hour installment offered us laughter, high drama and all those emotional feels we’ve come to expect from ABC’s sweeping fantasy series. (The only downside is waiting an extra week to find out what will happen next!)

Let’s start in Arendelle where the past is finally revealed…

In true Once Upon a Time fashion, this episode began with a rider on a horse. In this case, it’s Ingrid, riding off to a remote cave where she hides the Sorcerer’s hat. She then takes a trip to the Enchanted Forest to pay a visit to the Sorcerer’s Apprentice. There she requests a meeting with the mysterious Sorcerer in order to make a deal with him in completing her “perfect” family. She is able to persuade the Apprentice by revealing her upper hand in having the hat. The Apprentice reveals that he will make her request known to the Sorcerer, but it will take some time. Luckily, she has all the time in the world.

As Elsa is preparing for the return of Anna, Ingrid comes to plant seeds of doubt in the bond between Elsa and Anna by telling her that Anna has been keeping secrets from her sister. Ingrid tells her that Anna is locked up for trying to attack her. She even shares the story of Gerta’s betrayal to Elsa to make her claim more believable. Just when it appears that Elsa has bought into Ingrid’s lies, her bond with Anna proves to be stronger as she frees Anna from the dungeon, returns the snowflake necklace to her sister, and creates a plan to defeat their evil aunt.

The best plan to defeat Ingrid is to trap her once again in the urn in which she was originally found. Elsa, Anna, and Kristoff search in Ingrid and Gerta’s childhood room. There they find a broken mirror with a piece missing and a frozen Hans, who has the urn in his possession. The plan is simple: Anna will go back to the dungeon with the urn, Ingrid will then come to meet out punishment to Anna for her treason, and then Anna will trap her in the urn. Unfortunately, Ingrid is one step ahead as she was hiding in the urn; she is released and traps Anna instead. There she tells the original tale of the Shattered Sight curse, which involves a broken mirror of dark magic. The curse of Shattered Sight is enacted when shards from the mirror of dark magic is put in the eyes of some victim, who then can only see the worst qualities in the people around them. Ingrid pulls out the missing shard from the mirror in her childhood room and curses Anna.

While under the Shattered Sight curse, Anna is reunited with Elsa but begins to express the loneliness and resentment she felt when Elsa shut her out of her childhood all those years ago. Anna throws her snowflake necklace in the fireplace, and Ingrid walks in trying to convince Elsa that she is the only one who can truly understand her. Ingrid tries to get Elsa to freeze Anna, even though Anna is trying to place Elsa in the urn. Elsa refuses, and Anna traps her in the urn, but not before Elsa breaks the curse by saying to Anna three powerful words: “I love you.” With the spell broken and Ingrid hurt over losing Elsa to the urn, she gives in to her dark side, freezing not only Anna and Kristoff, but all of Arendelle as well.

Alone in her frozen masterpiece, Ingrid receives a visit from Rumpelstiltskin. He marvels at Ingrid’s work and retrieves the snowflake necklace from the former fireplace. Rumple also takes the urn with Elsa inside as leverage against Ingrid. In exchange for the urn, Ingrid needs to give him the Sorcerer’s hat. Ingrid goes to the cave, from the beginning of the episode, and digs up the hat. As she begins to summon Rumple, the Apprentice appears and pleads with Ingrid to not make this deal with the Dark One, but instead, she should hold up her deal that she made with the Sorcerer. In exchange for returning the hat to the Apprentice, the Apprentice will give Ingrid the name of the third sister and a portal to where she will eventually be found; the Sorcerer knows that Emma has not been born yet. Ingrid decides to take the Apprentice’s deal instead and is given the scroll with the prophesy about Emma becoming her new sister. The Apprentice opens a portal to our world, and Ingrid enters our world circa 1982. A new round of waiting begins as she waits for the savior to be born.


(ABC/Jack Rowand)


Now to the main action in Storybrooke…

After a night of hiding out in her yellow bug, Emma is awoken to the reality that her powers are still out of control. Henry finds her in the forest and tries to calm her down. Unfortunately, this proves disastrous as Emma accidently hurts Henry with her magic. Just as he leaves, Ingrid arrives on the scene to encourage Emma to accept who she really is. Emma refuses to accept the part of her that is capable of hurting those she loves most and drives away. Scared, she seeks help from Rumple, who tells her of a spell that will remove her light magic once and for all. He tells her to meet him at an abandoned manor on the edge of town at sundown. What she does not know is that after she leaves his store, Rumple throws away the scroll that contained the spell, making it clear that he has other plans in mind. He intends to collect her and her magic in the Sorcerer’s hat.

On her way to the manor, Emma calls Snow to check on Henry. She also informs her that she is planning to get rid of her powers for good. Snow tries to apologize for her actions the day before, but Emma is more concerned about protecting her family from herself so she hangs up on her mom. She is then stopped by Ingrid through the magic of her mirror. Ingrid tries to warn Emma about Rumple’s true nature of helping her. Because Emma knows Ingrid wants her for her powers, she continues on the manor.

Emma arrives at the manor, leaving her phone with countless missed calls from Hook and her family in the car. She meets Rumple inside, as he has prepared her “solution” in another room. All she has to do is just enter it. Emma questions his motives for helping her, in which he does not give her any real reason to trust him. When she asks him what he would do if he was in her situation, he tells her that he would not give up his powers. He reveals to her that even though he has done good things in the past, he is still addicted to the power and has no intention of changing that. Rumple does see Emma as a hero and reminds her that she is not him and she always does the right thing. With that, Rumple leaves to stop Hook from entering the manor. Elsa manages to find Emma before she walks into the room where the hat is. Elsa comes to the realization that in order to control the powers, its more than just accepting love from others; it is also about loving yourself and accepting all parts of yourself. Elsa reaches her arm out to Emma, and she accepts it. This finally calms Emma down and gains control over her powers again.

Happy reunions continue as Hook finally enters the manor and greets Emma with a hug and a passionate kiss. Hook makes it very clear that he always has and will be accept all parts of her. Hook leads Emma and Elsa outside to be reunited with the rest of her family. Snow and Charming both apologize for ever wanting Emma to give up the parts of her that make her special. This happy reunion is completed with Emma demonstrating new control of her powers by putting fireworks in the sky. A happy ending is exactly what this family needed.


Outlaw Queen finding more than answers…

As far as Regina and Robin Hood, we pick up the morning after Robin gave into his feelings for Regina. After a night of “pleasurable sleep” Regina and Robin face the reality of their situation. As much as they want to be together, Marian is still alive and a current complication to their undeniable attraction to each other. Regina laments on how she wished she could have gone into the bar when Tinkerbell told her to go in after Robin many years ago. This brings up Regina’s current mission in Operation Mongoose. Robin wants to help, but Regina turns him from the idea, further declaring they do not need have any more alone time together. He agrees, but that does not stop him from stealing the storybook and seeking out the help of Will Scarlet. Will gives Robin a brief history of what life in Storybrooke was like during the curse and where they might be able to find answers about the book: the library. After spending hours trying to find any kind of clue as to who the author of the book could be, Robin receives help from the storybook itself in the form of a a loose page. When Regina arrives at the library, Robin shows her the page depicting the two of them together in the bar back in the Enchanted Forest. Apparently, Regina’s fate could have been played out in various ways and the author has pages to account for it. Regina sees this and finally starts to believe that hope for a happy ending is actually possible for her. Put a quarter in the hope jar, Regina!



(ABC/Jack Rowand)


The Price of Power

Rumple makes a visit to Ingrid in her snow cave after Emma leaves the pawn shop. Once there, he informs her that he intends on collecting Emma and her powers in the Sorcerer’s hat. Ingrid tries to stop him, but he traps her temporarily using the remaining magic from the urn that Elsa was trapped in. He only needs to betray Ingrid and Emma to get exactly what he wants.

Hook tries to find Rumple in his pawn shop after hearing that Emma intends to remove her powers. He knows exactly what Rumple intends to do to Emma after assisting Rumple in trapping the Apprentice a few episodes ago. After seeing evidence that Emma had indeed been in the pawn shop, Hook calls Emma again, only this time in the voicemail, he reveals the truth about Rumple’s plans and his involvement in them. In trying to be a better man for Emma, he allowed himself to be manipulated by Rumple and potentially lose Emma forever. After this voicemail, he sees the map of the manor’s location.

Hook arrives to the manor only to be stopped by Rumple trapping him against the fence. Hook is forced to witness the loss of the woman he loves all over again – as with Milah. However, when Emma chooses not to enter the room with the hat, Hook is visibly pleased.  Rumple reveals to Hook his ultimate plan of being free from the power of the dagger forever. The final ingredient that Rumple needs for that is the heart of a person who knew him before he became the Dark One. Unfortunately for Hook, he is that person and Rumple rips his heart out. Hook is now under Rumple’s control until such time as the Dark One collects enough magic to make the spell work, after which Rumple will kill Hook. After Hook’s reunion with Emma, he collects the hat, still not revealing his predicament to her.

Ingrid is eventually free from the power of the urn dust, and she puts on one of her ribbons that she got back from Rumple in the previous episode. She then sends the remaining two ribbons to be attached to Emma and Elsa. These ribbons, powerful from the true love between Ingrid’s sisters, are now being used to harness Emma, Elsa, and Ingrid’s powers to finally enact the Shattered Sight curse on the town. The episode closes with Ingrid breaking her mirror and spreading the shards of hate to the people of Storybrooke.

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