It’s been three weeks since we were treated with two episodes of Once Upon a Time and we learned who Hook’s daughter was, as well as Victoria Belfrey getting arrested.
This episode kicks off with a flashback of Rapunzel trying to lead her family to food, which results in being trapped by Mother Gothel. Rapunzel is willing to give up “anything” to save Marcus and her daughters Anastasia and Drizella, so she agrees to be locked up in a tower with the promise that she’ll never see her family again.
In Hyperion Heights, Victoria is in jail, but she’s trying to get out by making a deal. First, she faces Drizella, who makes her contempt for her mother clear as she tried to stop her from resurrecting her sister. Drizzy leaves and Detective Weaver comes in to also antagonise Victoria, but ends up making a deal after she lets him know she’s in on his secret. She picks on him about Belle and so he becomes her chauffer as she’s let free on account of an “unwarranted arrest” by Rogers. But he lets her know that he knows of her true title: Rapunzel.
Rogers is not happy to see Weaver and Victoria in cahoots, so he decides to snoop around in the storage room and proceeds to discover a box full of files with everyone’s faces on them—Victoria, Drizella, Jacinda, and himself.
Victoria’s first stop is Jacinda’s house to deliver paperwork solidifying her deal to return custody of Lucy. Lucy hopes Jacinda will invite Henry over again, but he’s currently out-of-town. Victoria says that all her cruel treatment of Jacinda was a test to see how much she was willing to fight and that she has now passed.
We then move to Victoria’s backstory—when she was Rapunzel, she was trapped in Gothel’s tower for six years and ticked off every single day on the wall until she saw some lanterns floating by that gave her an idea. She uses a pair of scissors and a long braid rope to free herself. But her homecoming isn’t a happy one. Anastasia has kept a torch lit for her (literally), but Marcus has moved on. He’s married to a woman named Ceceilia who’s raising her daughter Ella. Drizella’s connection to her mother has also been tainted with time.
Marcus insists that he still loves her, but he also loves Ceceilia and doesn’t want to give up his new life. Mother Gothel then shows up and pretends to admire her resourcefulness in escaping the tower. She vaguely points out that although she’s been physically reunited with her family, the emotional disconnect is so vast that she might as well be still in the tower.
Gothel tells her to use her poison mushroom to take Ceceilia out of the picture and Rapunzel declines at first, throwing the offering into the fire and reminds Gothel that Ceceilia is innocent, but Gothel puts a new unburnt one on her mantle for when the time is right.
Back in Hyperion Heights, Jacinda consults with Nick to see if the paperwork Victoria has delivered on Lucy is the real deal. Surprisingly, the documents check out and finds herself kissing him briefly before pulling away. She does want Lucy to have a relationship with him, but they aren’t going to become a couple again.
Killian approaches Tiana to follow-up on the broken door lock. Weaver has already been there, but Tiana spills all she knows including a drawing of the mystical dagger that was used to jimmy the door and the odd intel that Weaver asked her if she “felt anything” while holding it.
Victoria and Weaver’s next stop is the mausoleum where she recovers a bag filled with the essential ingredients for her Anastasia resurrection project, and although Drizella and Gothel are hot on her trail, they wait to go in until she has left. Weaver tries to relate to her, even talking about Baelfire but she isn’t deterred. She tells Weaver that he’ll get his information on the Guardian once Anastasia is awake again. He and Gothel exchange a conversation and they produce the knowledge that he’s just allowed something terrible to happen by helping Victoria.
We switch back to another flashback and learn that Rapunzel did use the mushroom and while it didn’t kill Cecelia, it did scare her off. She and Marcus grew closer and just as they were about to share true love’s kiss, Anastasia and Ella fell beneath the ice where they were building a snowman. Marcus dove in after them, but only came back with Ella.
Rapunzel is furious and takes Anastasia to Gothel to try to save her. Gothel is able to seal her last breath but she wants to lock her away in a tower in hopes that she’ll be the fabled Guardian—a person who’s goodness is absolute and unbreakable, the way Rapunzel was before using the mushroom. Rapunzel turns against Gothel and banishes her to a tower (savage!).
In Hyperion Heights, Victoria goes to see Lucy at school and she tries to wave her wicked step-grandmother away, but is lured in by the sight of Henry’s book. Victoria is honest about her history as Rapunzel (which is shocking) and even admits to poisoning her grandmother. But then she starts turning all that intrigue against Lucy, by telling her that fairytales are real but happy endings aren’t. She says that Jacinda and Henry will never get together and tells Lucy that Jacinda has been making out with Nick. She tells Lucy to let go of her belief in happy endings and takes one of Lucy’s tears.
Lucy leaves, with Weaver and the rest of the force on her trail, when Rogers confronts Weaver. He wants to know why there is so much secrecy, and Weaver tells him that he’s trying to find Belle. Rogers believes him, and offers to help him.
Lucy makes her way home, not speaking to Jacinda. Just then, Victoria places her hijacked tear on Anastasia’s head. Anastasia gasps and Lucy collapses into Jacinda’s arms. Drizella is watching her sister and mother, and walks away crying.
That was an intense, emotional ending. The overall episode was very interesting. I never would have seen Rapunzel as Victoria coming, ever, so that was a shock. I hope Lucy still believes, even after Victoria’s horrific speech.
What did you think of ‘One Little Tear’? How shocked were you at this episode? Sound off in the comments below!