Episode 503 “Siege Perilous”
This week, there were a knighting, a kidnapping, and a magic mushroom!
In Camelot, our intrepid heroes were in Merlin’s lair studying his books trying to figure out how to free him from the tree while not permitting Emma to do anything. Snow suggested that there might be a way to communicate with Merlin and ask him for answers. So they looked in a book and found they needed a particular toadstool. Regina put a big question mark on a piece of paper to mark the page, and David and Arthur went off to equip themselves to look for the magic mushroom.
Apparently they weren’t in too much of a hurry since they had some rather lengthy exposition by the Round Table. They talked about the Seige Perilous, which was the most prominent chair around the table and was once reserved for Lancelot before he betrayed Arthur. David informed him that he and Snow heard that Lancelot was dead. David talked about the legends of Arthur. All the while, Merlin was still stuck in the tree and Emma wasn’t getting any better. Eventually, a servant brought in a chest with magic items collected by the knights. One of them was an eternal flame that they would take along with them. Then, finally, they left.
The two had some bro time chatting in the woods when they came upon the magic toadstool across a pond/lake/river/something with a loose bridge of boards floating across. David went across alone since he didn’t think the boardwalk would hold the both of them. He cut off the toadstool, and on the way back across, was attacked by sword-wielding magic suits of armor. What a lousy security system. Good security would have attacked before he got the magic mushroom. By waiting until the toadstool had already been cut off, isn’t it too late for security? Anyway, after delivering a few it’s-only-a-flesh-wound decapitations, one of the suits dragged David into the water. Arthur, who stood on the sidelines during the ordeal, finally helped him out of the water.
When they got back to shore, David realized the toadstool was gone. Then they had some male bonding time chatting about who they were as individuals. Then Arthur said he had a place for someone like David.
Back at Camelot, there was a lavish ceremony where David was made a knight of the Round Table. But instead of Percival’s seat, Arthur gave him the Siege Perilous. Not bad for someone who so bravely attempted to rescue a toadstool.
Snow took their baby out of the chamber where she was being disturbed by the noise of the celebration. Outside the room, she ran into … Lancelot! He told her that Arthur was a villain and that Camelot wasn’t what it seemed. But of course. It would have been too simple for Once Upon A Time otherwise. Later on, Arthur was alone with Guinevere in the Round Table room with the chest with magic items. He pulled out of his pocket … the toadstool! He said he had to think about his kingdom first.
In Storybrooke, the dwarves (minus Dopey of course) were working in the mine with a wheelbarrow full of gems which have yet to make the dwarves rich. Emma showed up and took Happy’s pickax before disappearing. She said that she learned as the Dark One that if something has your name on it, you hold onto it. Then she disappeared in a poof of black smoke.
In the sheriff’s office, Regina had Merlin’s book with the drawing of the toadstool and the paper with the question mark on it. She said the writing was clearly hers. I guess she figured she drew rather distinctive question marks. But it was a clue that they were looking for the toadstool at some point for some reason. Then the dwarves stormed in and complained about Emma and her taking Happy’s ax. When Regina and the dwarves had left, David had a meltdown and complained to Snow about the obvious things that we already knew about while Snow was the one trying to keep him calm.
Oh, the ways that they fill time on this show. At least they kept it interesting. Unfortunately, it didn’t add anything we didn’t already know.
Then after Snow left, Arthur entered, still wearing his suit of armor. After all, who needs comfortable clothes when you can have heavy metal plates all over you? He informed that the chest with the magic items had appeared, nearly empty. There was a magic bean inside that could take all his people back to their realm in an instant, and it was missing.
At the Camelot Campground, David, Arthur, and Arthur’s squire were looking into the nearly empty chest which previously contained magic relics. The lock had been pried open. The squire said it could have been the Dark One. But David wasn’t so sure, but had an idea of what the next move would be. So they borrowed a chalice from Belle at Gold’s shop. David told the people it was the Chalice of Vengeance and would identify whoever was the thief. Then Arthur’s squire did the Red Riding Hood shtick with a hooded cape and took off on horseback. David and Arthur strangely had trouble catching him in a pickup truck which undoubtedly had more horses. At least it made for a good chase scene. They eventually got him though with a wooden plank. The squire said he didn’t see any bean, but he took the other stuff to hurt Arthur.
Walking through the campsite, David (conveniently, of course) came across the magic toadstool underneath the side of a tent. He, Regina, and Snow thought that it would be the chance to talk to Merlin. Then Arthur visited the squire locked in a jail cell, still in full armor no less. Then it’s revealed that the theft was Arthur’s idea and there was no magic bean. Then Arthur
petted his cat while he revealed that since they couldn’t go home, he would build a new Camelot there once the others were out of the way. Then he gave poison to the squire to keep him quiet as any good James Bond villain should.
Emma’s attempt to use Happy’s ax to break the stone containing Excalibur failed. During the failed attempt, Hallucination Rumpelstiltskin was taunting her. He said that it would take an actual hero to pull the sword, and they both knew who that would be.
While talking with Robin Hood at Granny’s Diner about the miracles of sonogram pictures on smartphones, Killian got an order and a message to meet Emma on his ship. On the ship, Emma wanted a dinner like old times out at sea. Killian wasn’t going for it since it wasn’t like old times. He wanted to know what was behind the door and what her deal was. As much as I like the Dark Swan twist, seeing the divide between the two of them isn’t as enjoyable. I’m hoping for a good payoff to this.
So Emma kidnapped Mr. Gold and woke him up in the dungeon basement that now contained Excalibur while being taunted by Imaginary Friend Rumpel. She told him that she would make Gold into a hero with the purest of hearts. Then he could do something for her in return.
There were a few nice twists in this episode. Most of them quite good, such as the reveal of Arthur as a villain in disguise. But as necessary as it is, the rift between Emma and Killian is a bit annoying. Perhaps I expected more from that storyline. But overall, the season is still heading in a good direction.