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‘Once Upon A Time’ Season 4 Episode 17 Recap: “Best Laid Plans”

once upon a time best laid plans

There were numerous secrets and revelations in this week’s Once Upon A Time. It was hard to keep up.

The secret David and Mary Margaret were keeping from Emma was revealed. The fate of Maleficent’s child was shown and the author was revealed –- or at least one of the authors. What the author can do also shed light on why Gold and the other villains want him unleashed from the book.

Mary Margaret and David’s actions in the past prove anyone has the ability to do things that hint of darkness and evil if it deals with their child. They did just that when, after touching a unicorn’s horn, they each see a vision where their future child Emma could become good or evil. Set upon an alternate path by a roadside peddler they happen upon, the Sorcerer who tells them there is a way to ensure their child will be a hero. All they have to do is transfer any chance of darkness into a blank vessel, meaning another child.

In a surprisingly little amount of contemplation, Mary Margaret and David decide they will transfer the darkness to Maleficent’s child since they assume he or she will be evil anyway. When they steal the egg that holds the child, Maleficent’s pleas go on deaf ears as Mary Margaret and David take the egg with the intention of returning it after the spell has been cast.

To the couple’s horror, they find out after the Sorcerer does the spell that the child can’t stay in the enchanted land and is sent to another realm –- the one they are in now. It is a moment they both carry with them for over 30 years.

Mary Margaret and David spend most of the episode trying to find ways to keep Emma from learning what they have done. They even contemplate burning the page of the book the author is being held captive in even after Henry shows them he has found the key to free the author. In the end, they decide to tell Emma the truth. Emma is not pleased with what they have done. In fact, she walks out on them — not even Hook can console her.

Emma takes the page with the author in it and goes to see August, who is recovering from his ordeal. She finds her parents there and to their chagrin she uses the key to unleash the author. But not before August tells them the author is just one of many -– it is a job not a true calling. Before the author is released, a flashback shows the current author went beyond recording history and began to manipulate the stories. For his actions, he was trapped in the book by the Sorcerer and his apprentice.

When Emma releases the author, David and Mary Margaret are shocked to find it is the peddler they found on the road that led them to the path of the Sorcerer. Before Emma can ask him the questions she has burning inside her, he escapes.

As for the fate of Maleficent’s child, Gold shows her where the child went after it was sent away. The baby girl was adopted and her name is Lily. The same Lily whom Emma befriended while in foster care. Does Lily have true darkness in her and does Emma have pure goodness? Will the two meet and clash after what their parents have done?