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Once Upon A Time 3×03 “Quite A Common Fairy” Recap


It’s not very fairy-like to ignore someone who needs help.

Unfortunately, the fae’s Queen B is back, and butting heads with the optimistic Tinkerbell. It’s Green vs. Blue. Grab some tissues, this week you’ll need it.

We open with Charming insisting that Snow take a break because you know, he was  poisoned last week, and clearly struggling. As Emma checks the map, the Dysfunctional Five (Charming, Emma, Hook, Regina, and Snow) realize that the location of Peter Pan’s camp has moved. Regina is quick to blame Emma for getting them lost, and a smitten Hook quickly jumps to the savior’s defense. It’s not Emma who’s lead them astray, the Captain says. Pan has relocated his camp. How will they find Henry if the camp continuously moves?

At said camp, Peter Pan throws an apple at Henry who snubs his nose at it. Henry doesn’t like apples, and Pan incredulously asks who doesn’t like an apple.

“It’s a family thing.”

Pan isn’t exactly interested in feeding Henry. He wants to play a game of William Tell.

This episode takes place in four different places, so it gets a little confusing. In the Enchanted Forest, Mulan and Robin Hood watch as Nealfire frantically searches his father’s dark castle in search of something that could make a portal. (Sidenote: Did anyone else catch Thor’s hammer?)

Nealfire informs the mighty duo of how treacherous Pan is. Cue the short version of Pan’s search for the heart of the truest believer à la Nealfire’s perspective. All the noise from throwing books and objects to the floor summons Little John and the Merry Men. Among the Merry Men is an adorable four-year-old He’s Robin’s son, and his name is Rolland. His daddy lovingly scoops him into his arms. Nealfire smiles, and it’s not because Rolland is a super cute kid.

Remember the kidnapping murderous shadow? Put two and two together. It’s not hard to see where this is going.

Back in Neverland, frustrated that they’ve been walking in circles, Regina once again suggests using magic. Hook chastises the hotheaded Queen saying that Pan would kill them, but more importantly him so that plan is a no-go. He suggests finding a fairy he encountered in his last stint on the island. Emma rolls her eyes and asks if it’s Tinkerbell. Hook asks if she knows her to which Emma responds, “Every kid in the world knows her.”

Regina goes full on NOPE to Hook’s idea which causes Emma’s Spidey Sense to tingle. Clearly the Queen’s hesitation to the plan is layered.

In the Enchanted Forest that once was, a young Regina is eating alone in her palace. Rumpelstiltskin pops out of thin air saying he thought she was dead. Regina didn’t show up to her magic lesson. Our Queen is depressed, really depressed. She wants freedom and options; she dreams of a life away from the King and Snow White.

Rumpel feeds into Regina’s fears about being alone, and tells her to bring her simmering rage to their next magic lesson. Regina starts pushing on the banister after the Dark One makes his fabulous exit. It breaks. As she plummets to her death, Regina’s rescued by none other than Tinkerbell (Rose McIver).

Tink and Regina share a heart-to-heart conversation in a small village. Tinkerbell is genuinely concerned for the Queen and tells her she will help save her. You know what she needs? Love. With love, she will find her happy ending.

In Neverland, Regina drops her handkerchief. A dark and wild looking Tinkerbell picks it up as she follows the Dysfunctional Five. The closer Hook leads them to Tinkerbell’s hideout, the more Regina pushes Emma to use magic. We all know that magic comes with a price, but the Queen is quick to say sometimes not using it comes with a price too. Regina is not happy because it appears there is no way she can convince Emma to deter from the current plan.

“You think it’s the best plan because your boyfriend came up with it?”

Hook and Charming are a bit ahead of the ladies, but at the word boyfriend, Charming’s head snaps to their conversation. Emma doesn’t get angry or even deny it; Emma plays it off like the idea is silly. But is it? Snow is the one who gets angry at the statement and yells at Regina that Emma has just lost Nealfire.

Our Queen and Savior have come a long way, ya’ll. She apologizes, because – after all – she is only worried about Henry. Emma gets it. You think that after being with Regina since she was a child, Snow would understand Regina’s outbursts, too.

Pan is dipping arrows in dream shade, and loading up a crossbow. He wants Henry to shoot an arrow at an apple on top of Felix’s head. The peer pressure here is intense guys. All the Lost Boys are egging Henry to shoot. He does, but he turns it at Pan who catches the arrow and smiles. He has something to show Henry.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the island, Hook pulls Charming aside to ask if he is going to tell his wife about being poisoned. Yes, our Captain is perceptive. The Prince shows his wound, and Hook sadly informs him he wont make it to the summer. Apparently there’s no cure. Tell your wife Charming. Of course,  the stubborn Prince refuses to do the sensible thing. He wants to try using pixie dust as a possible cure.

In the past, Tinkerbell is late for a very important date in the fairy kingdom. She flies into a room filled with colorful roses. There are several purple, yellow, pink, and blue roses but only one green rose. As Tink sneaks her way to it, the Blue Fairy emerges from within the green rose. Uh-oh.

Tink, according to Blue, has broken a lot of fae rules. Tinkerbell tries to explain why’s she late, and how she found Regina who desperately needed her help.

Blue proceeded to lecture Tinkerbell with the most hypocritical speech I’ve heard fall from her lips in all three seasons. I’m sorry Blue but why is it cool for you to come to the aid of the Dark One’s son but when Tink wants to save Regina who’s mother is Cora, Queen of Hearts, it’s somehow unacceptable? Why is Nealfire worthy of help from the fae, but not Regina?

Tink of course bites back – as she should – that Regina is exactly the type of person they should be helping. Blue of course spouts off about what’s considered “good.” Excuse me, but the Blue Fairy and her definition of good is convoluted. Regina at this point has not wandered down the path of darkness. Blue is judging Regina based solely on the actions of her mother.

If the Blue Fairy turns out to be some evil mastermind stringing everyone around to meet some dark agenda, I won’t be surprised. Moving on-

Tink doesn’t listen to Blue’s warning, and flies off to help Regina. You go girl.

Back in the Enchanted Forest, Nealfire is using Robin Hood’s debt to his father as a way to get what he wants. He is manipulating Robin into using his four year old son as bait. Think about that for a moment. Nealfire wants to summon Pan’s shadow using a toddler as bait. He’s so desperate to get to Neverland, he doesn’t even consider searching for another option. Yes, this is easy, but it’s wrong.

Robin Hood should say no. He has already lost his wife, and I mean come on, this is his son. Rolland is all he has. Nealfire continues to guilt trip Robin Hood by saying, “my father he saved her [his wife] and your son.”

For some ridiculous reason, Robin Hood agrees to help Nealfire…

The Dysfunctional Five continue about in the jungle. Regina falls behind, so Emma finally asks what the deal was with her and this fairy. Emma’s quite perceptive this episode, too. Regina lets her know that it’s complicated. Isn’t it always?

“My staying out of her sight is what’s best for Operation Henry.”

Say what you will about the Queen, but she loves her son.

Tinkbell of the past flies into Regina’s palace and covers her with pixie dust. “Helping you find your happiness, saving you, that’s what’s going to save me.”

She uses the pixie dust to find Regina’s soulmate, and the two fly off to a tavern. The man inside, her soulmate has a lion tattoo on his forearm. Tink gives her a moment to gather courage and runs off so she can let go of her anger and meet the man who will make her happy.

What makes Regina so likable, no matter how often she messes up, is how beautifully human she is. When Regina pulls open that door, she’s full of hope; she’s smiling. In an instant fear takes hold of her. She shakes and her eyes grow full of worry. She was terrified, and so she runs. The emotions she feels at this moment are so relatable and down to Earth.

I get why Regina chose to run. Anger is all she’s had since marrying the King. She had lost the man she loved, and heartbreak is never easy. Letting go of the past, opening up to love again, well, it can be incredibly hard. Poor Regina doesn’t even believe that she deserves to love again or be happy, and what’s so heartbreaking here is the entire show she’s had that doubt reiterated to her by so many characters. This is the first time I’ve seen a character believe that Regina’s love is worth having love. Tinkerbell believes this so much it hurts when you see that look on Regina’s face that she doesn’t believe it.

In Neverland, Tinkerbell is not happy when she jumps from behind a bush to greet Regina. She knocks her out with a sparkly pink powder.

Our motley crew arrives at Tink’s treehouse. Charming frantically searches for the pixie dust, but it’s not there. There isn’t much of anything in the treehouse. Emma comes to the conclusion that it’s just a place to sleep. Snow and her daughter have a moment of bonding here, because once upon a time she didn’t have a home when she was a bandit.

Charming finds Regina’s handkerchief, and they embark on finding their lost Queen.

Regina wakes in a cave to a very disgruntled fairy. She knows why Regina’s in Neverland, and she tells her there’s no way in hell she’ll help her get Henry. Apparently Tink has lost her magic, and used the poppy plant to knock out Regina. She holds up an arrow laced with dream shade to Regina’s neck. She’s become dark; basically she tells the Queen it’s all her fault.

In the past, Tink flies to meet Regina who is laying in bed troubled. Regina doesn’t want to let her down; Tink only wanted to help her, so a guilty Regina lied about what happened. She then turned around and blamed Tinkerbell saying the problem wasn’t the pixie dust it was her.

Regina always does this when she hurts; she lashes out and pushes those who care about her away. Tink, who in the past was so optimistic, didn’t understand that humans can fail, and she has been in Neverland struggling with why it didn’t work out with Regina. Regina and Tink are really similar. They are two peas in a pod wanting so desperately to believe in someone, that when they let them down it’s devastating.

Regina recognizes Tinkerbell’s on the path of revenge. Oh my, how far our Queen has come; she takes responsibility for her actions in the past and rips out her own heart offering it to Tink.

In the Enchanted Forest that once was, the Blue Fairy confronts Tinkerbell and strips the green fairy of her powers. According to Blue, she does not get a second chance. The Blue Witch Fairy no longer believes in her. Tink loses her wings and falls to the ground in tears. Blue flies off like what just happened is no big deal.

Tink is screaming at Regina; she’s hurting so much. Why did you lie Regina, she asks. “Was being happy such a terrible thing?”

Yes, it was. Regina admits she was afraid. She only had her anger, what would she be without it? Happy maybe but she wasn’t ready.

Tink and Regina talk it out. Regina warns her to not let revenge darken her heart the way she had. It’s too late, Tink thinks, but it’s not. It never is in this show.

Pan is a convincing kid. He’s selling Henry on the perks of staying in Neverland. Henry is stubborn, which gets him a laugh from Pan who compares him to Nealfire. He hands over the parchment he’s been carrying for hundreds of years. Henry throws it aside, but eventually he’ll look. He is a curious kid.

Peter Pan throws out the idea that maybe Emma isn’t the savior, maybe it’s Henry. Someone has to save magic, not just in his world, or Neverland but everywhere. Interesting.

Meanwhile, in the Enchanted Forest, Nealfire tells Mulan and Robin Hood how this is his second chance with Emma since you know he screwed up the first time. They bring in cute Rolland who stands in front of a window and says, “I believe.”

At first, nothing happens. Nealfire begs Robin for him to say it once again to which Mr. Hood flat out refuses. Suddenly, the window bursts open and in flies the demonic shadow. He reaches for Rolland, and Mulan slices at it with her enchanted sword. Nealfire jumps out the window and grabs hold of the shadow’s leg. They fly off to Neverland. I’d be surprised if this isn’t the last little Rolland sees of the shadow.

Mulan goes to check on how the toddler is doing, and Robin thanks her for saving his son. He offers her a place among his Merry Men. Mulan has something she needs to do first.

Bust out that box of tissues. This is the best scene of the entire night.

Mulan is watching as Aurora tends to her garden of flowers. When she asks if Philip is around, Aurora offers to go fetch him for her. I honestly stopped breathing a moment when Mulan said there was no need because she wanted to speak with Aurora. She loves her, and she was gathering the courage to tell her, and for a moment I believed it was going to happen. Then reality slapped me in the face. Aurora, beaming with happiness, tells Mulan that her and Philip are expecting a baby.

As they embrace, you can see Mulan’s heart breaking. Instead of telling Aurora how she feels, she decides to tell Aurora that she’s joining Robin Hood’s band of Merry Men. Mulan walks away as a tear slides down her face. She loves her. Mulan loves Aurora, and god it hurts to watch her walk away from the chance of possibly being happy.

The Dysfunctional Four -cause Regina is in the cave- surround Tinkerbell with their weapons. Regina runs out saying everything is fine, and they lower their weapons. Unfortunately, she has no pixie dust; poor Charming.

Hook asks for help as he gestures towards Emma. No way, she tells them. Then Snow offers her something she wants: a home. Tink agrees, and they decide to rendezvous back at their camp to discuss a plan.

Oh, remember this it’s probably important: Snow never found her home till she met Charming. Even now, that’s all she needs.

Henry looks at the parchment with the picture of him, and at the same time Nealfire is kicked by the shadow down into the Neverland jungle. He’s greeted by Felix.

Hook and Emma and sitting together. The Captain busts open a coconut and hands it to Emma who smiles and says thanks. They’re so relaxed, and the way he gazes at her when she isn’t looking is enough to make your heart melt. This is the third episode the two have shared a drink, and their interactions have become so natural now.

Tink watches the pair with wide eyes before moving to Regina who had pulled away from the others.

“Did you ever go back to find him? The man with the lion tattoo,” she asks.

“No,” Regina replies.

Tink calls her selfish because she didn’t just ruin her life by not going to find her soulmate. Tink thinks she’s ruined his life, too.

Back in the Enchanted Forest, Mulan meets up with Robin and his Merry Men. As they shake hands, you see his forearm, and in the most not-surprising part of the episode you find out that Robin Hood is Regina’s soulmate.

Till next time.

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Written by: Jessica Lee