Apr 30 2012 10:55am

Once Upon a Time Season 1, Episode 20: Breaking Promises and Sporting Wood

Emma and August in Once Upon a Time episode 20*****SPOILERS*****

As the season nears the end, we see Once Upon a Time finally gather enough steam to really be enjoyable. This week’s episode had some really stellar moments. Some of it was a bit hard to follow and clichéd, but at least it’s beginning to answer some questions.

The episode centered around August the mysterious writer with the bad leg and serious interest in Emma, and tonight we find out why.

(Need to catch up? Check out previous Once Upon a Time recaps: Episode 14 | Episode 15 |Episode 16 | Episode 17 | Episode 18 | Episode 19)

We open the story with Henry telling Emma that there is a new story in the book, about Pinocchio, and it’s unfinished.

What we find out~

Geppetto in Once Upon a Time’s The StrangerWe see Pinocchio and Geppetto fighting off giant Whale Monstro; they are nearly swallowed but survive and are washed up on to the shore. The fairy comes and turns Pinocchio into a “real boy,” but says he must stay brave and true. To me, real boy Pinocchio looks kind of evil.

Mr. Gold dangles the ’Geppetto is your father’ carrot in front of August, in a Star Wars-type scene in the pawnshop. After Geppetto leaves, Gold gets really nasty and reminds August that his time is short and he has not persuaded Emma to stand up for the town. Gold goes a bit overboard on the “crazy train,” but I guess you can’t really blame him, since last week August pretended to be Gold’s lost son.

Geppetto learns about the curse from the blue fairy and also sees the wardrobe tree for the first time. Since the tree only has room for two, he coerces the fairy into letting one of those two people be Pinocchio. If she doesn’t agree to it—and lie to the council about it—he will not make the wardrobe.

August can leave Storybrook, and so can Emma! He takes her to a diner, where she was found as a baby. He tells her he was the one who found her and brought her to the diner in the first place. She is skeptical!

Geppetto and Pinocchio/AugustAugust/Pinocchio is turning back into wood because he hasn’t been true to himself or kept his promises. He takes Emma to the forest to see where the wardrobe came through, hoping it will jog her memory. He tells her she is the whole town’s only chance to be free and they need her! Emma melts down in another “Luke, I am your father" scene.  He shows her how he is turning into wood again, and she looks at him like he’s gone over to crazy town. He realizes she can’t see it, because her denial is so strong. She leaves him there and denies everything.

We see that Pinocchio is taking care of Emma in a orphanage, and is miserable and treated cruelly. He gets the chance to leave Emma, but remembers he has promised to keep her safe. He breaks his promise and leaves, thus setting more of the curse into action.

August goes to Geppetto and asks to be his helper. It is a really touching scene where I might or might not have cried... I mean NO, I didn’t... no crying.

Emma decides she’s had enough, takes Henry in a new amber alert low. Kidnapping.

What we wish we didn’t find out~

Henry in Once Upon a Time 1.20, The StrangerDavid helps Regina with a dead battery and then she invites him to dinner. At first he declines, and then feels sorry for her and accepts. After dinner they have a romantic moment. It’s so not good..and I may have thrown up in my mouth a little.

Henry has a talk with Regina, where he is very accusatory and tells her she’s evil and he doesn’t like her. I didn’t like this, it made Henry look like an ungrateful spoiled child.

All in all the episode was intense and full of answers. I have found myself enjoying the last few episodes with less snark and more interest.

What did you think?

Synde Korman talks music and books on her website Tombstone Tails, along with creating a line of literary jewelry on her etsy site Cemetery Cat Designs.

When she’s not herding cats or creating art, she works as a part-time bookseller. You can find her on twitter as @psynde.

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Marian DeVol
2. ladyengineer
I'm at the point where I'm not even watching the show on a regular basis. I read your re-cap to see if it is worth my time.
Tatiana deCarillion
3. decarillion
If nothing else, I love the costumes and sets. (The mayor's office, with that 'tree' wallpaper, is divine!).

Henry talking to his mother (Regina) that way-I can think of at least one mom I know that would've cracked him across the butt for that (not me!)

We haven't seen the ENTIRE backstory for the Queen, et al. Maybe she had a crush on Charming, in fairytale land, but he fell for Snow White, instead. That would be twice that Regina perceived Snow dissed her...
Nicole Neal
4. icecharm
I'm with ladyengineer, I don't watch this show regularly, but I make sure to read the recap.
Darlene Marshall
5. DarleneMarshall
Just caught up with the episode. Y'all were right, it was Pinocchio!

Aside from that, I'd still rather see Mr. Gold doing almost anything than watch Emma and August deal with their angsty past lives. Also, I can't imagine any court taking Henry from Regina and giving him to Emma. On what grounds is she going to claim Regina's an unfit mother? Regina raised Henry, gave him a safe and secure home and sees to his needs. What's Emma done for him besides get him to act out?

I'm with the Evil Queen on this one. Also, when I saw grown-up Pinocchio all I could think was, "Ewww...he'll give you splinters in your hooha!"
6. wsl0612
I agree w/you Synde, when EQ tried to put the moves on David, ugh! I enjoyed the back story fill-in and the modern day scenes with August and "dad". But kind of bothered by the fact that fairy tale boy Pinocchio had brown eyes and August has blue eyes! Casting error?
8. wsl0612
Synde - Well I was willing to give the red hair a pass due to aging but yes, it did seem like a very bad match between child and adult actors. Still, the actor who plays adult Pinocchio is very nice to look at :-)
Saundra Peck
9. sk1336
Hahahah..."sporting wood" is the first thought I had when he showed his leg!!!! I loved everything but the whole "feeling sorry for Regina" bit. Does David not care that EQ made everyone think Snow killed his wife? Really?!?!?!
10. crzytxgirl23
Someone needs to slap Emma and tell her to Woman Up! Crying because she doesn't want to save anyone is crap. Grow up, be the woman your son needs you to be along with all the supposed friends she made. And running away with him?? WTF? How is that ever a good idea? She is supposed to be the sherriff. I am so sick of her whinning. She is reminding me more of her father Prince.
Also, if the curse is supposed to happen and be broken when she is 28 does that mean that her next birthday will be when the whole curse deal is concluded? How much longer does that give her? Or the show?
11. @shley
I am getting really excited, and scared. .. everytime I get really into a show on ABC, they cancel it. DOes anyone know if ABC is planning to shoot season2 or is the end of season 1 the end of the story?
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