Tonight on ABC their fantastical series Once Upon A Time returns with an all new Sunday November 1, season 5 episode 6, called, “The Bear and the Bow” and we have your weekly recap below. On tonight’s episode Merida (Amy Manson) goes on a quest to save her brothers and brings Belle (Emilie de Ravin) with her in a Camelot flashback.
On the last episode, in Camelot, as Mary Margaret and David attempted to retrieve the Dark One dagger, Emma used a dreamcatcher to look into the past to see how Merlin was transformed into a tree. Together, Emma and Regina figure out the critical ingredient they must acquire to free Merlin, but it’s a race against Arthur, who didn’t want Merlin released.
Meanwhile, with encouragement from his moms, Henry mustered up the courage to ask Violet on a date. Back in Storybrooke, the heroes broke into Emma’s house hoping to locate Gold, but what they found will give them a glimpse of Emma’s end game. Far from prying eyes, Merida set about the mission Emma had tasked her with and began molding Gold into the hero they need to draw Excalibur. Did you watch the last episode? If you missed it, we have a full and detailed recap right here for you.
On tonight’s episode as per the ABC synopsis, “Merida goes on a quest to save her brothers and brings Belle with her in a Camelot flashback. Meanwhile, a spell that will open communication with Merlin is found in Storybrooke; and Emma orders Merida to kill Belle, prompting a heroic fight from Gold.”
Tonight’s season 5 episode 6 looks like it is going to be as magical as ever so make sure that you tune in to our live coverage of Once Upon A Time at 9:00 PM EST!
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#OnceUponATime begins back in Camelot in the dungeon. Hook and David fight their way into the dungeon, beating up guards along the way. Merlin is also with them magicking people. Belle is also with them and Hook is impressed that Merlin can see the future when he hides them from passing guards with a wave. They find Lancelot in his cell and Merida asks if they’ll free her too. Merlin says the call bars are enchanted and Belle offers a spell book for him to look over. He does and the bars disappear.
Merida says Arthur took her wisps and she has to find them to save her brothers. Merlin says they must go and they’ll find another way. Regina tells Mary that Emma let slip that they found Merlin. Regina has the crimson mushroom and they can use it to summon Merlin, but only to someone that Merlin has chosen. Belle says Rumple could help them and says he’s no worse than Emma. The others won’t listen and they tell her it’s a risk they have to take that Rumple will get hurt.
Belle is mad and storms out. Gold sits staring at the chipped teacup at the makeshift camp in the woods. He takes it in his hands and says – forgive me, Belle. He kisses it and then shatters it. He uses a shard to untie his bonds. Back in Camelot, Belle asks Merida why she was in the dungeon. She says she followed the wisps to find her brothers. She says she was lead to the sea and the boat she hid out on was owned by Arthur’s men who threw her in the dungeon.
Merida hands back with Belle then knocks her unconscious with a rock so she can get away. Now, she brings Emma to the camp to see her progress with Gold but they find he’s escaped. Emma still has her heart and threatens her. She tells Merida she must try to kill Belle to make Gold into the hero she needs. Back in Camelot, we see that Merida is rowing a boat as Belle comes too with an achy head. Belle threatens her and she tells Belle she wants her to use magic to find her brothers.
Belle says she should have just asked. Merida complains the clans kidnapped her brothers to try and force her to relinquish her throne and says they won’t let her rule if she’s not married. Now, Belle looks over a town map and wonders where Emma is keeping Gold. She hears a noise behind the elevator door that goes into the caverns and picks up a weapon to protect herself. They open and it’s Gold. He says -she’s after me and Belle says he’s safe now.
Gold thanks her then says he wanted to let go when he was in the coma because he didn’t deserve to live but then heard her voice. He says if it wasn’t for her, he wouldn’t be alive. He thanks her. She says they need to go before Emma finds her. He says Emma wanted him to escape then says she’s trying to turn him into a hero to pull Excalibur from the stone. He says Emma will target Belle to try and force him to be a hero. Belle asks what they can do. He says the magic in the shop can help them.
Back six weeks ago, Merida and Belle lurk near a witch’s home. They sneak inside to use a cauldron to do a locator spell. They see a vision of the Southern moor and the three men who were vying to marry Merida. Then she sees her brothers brought in and bags taken off of their heads. They hear her enemies say they have no choice but to take Merida’s crown and punish her by executing her brothers. Belle says they still have time to rescue them from their fate. Merida says fate is the right idea.
She pulls out a scroll and says she needs to change their fate and needs Belle to do it for her. She reads the scroll. Zelena reads What to Expect when You’re Expecting and is annoyed that Regina has sent her only healthy food. Emma poofs into her cell and then poofs she and Zelena out of it and sits her down with onion rings and take out over at Emma’s house. Zelena sits and asks what kind of trouble that Emma wants to get into.
Emma tells her to eat up and says Dark Ones don’t judge. Zelena asks what she wants and Emma shows her the apprentice’s wand and says Zelena is the only one who has wielded Merlin’s magic and lived. Emma offers her freedom and protection for her assistance. Zelena says she’s heard that Emma has been acting out with next level darkness and tells her to have fun with her son resenting her. Zelena says some things – like a broken heart – can’t be forgiven.
Zelena says she has her only family problems and doesn’t need Emma’s. She calls Emma a bad influence and says take me back to my cell. Emma says she’ll need an ally soon and will take the deal. Zelena says she doesn’t mind being alone. Emma poofs her back to her cell. Belle tells Gold the coast is clear and they should go but he’s too scared. She says it’s just 100 yards away. She asks what is it and he says it’s his leg. He says it’s a reminder of what he was and when he fled the ogre wars.
He calls himself a coward and she says he walked for days on a broken foot to get back to his son. She says he made mistakes in his life, but that wasn’t one of them. She kneels and says she saw the man behind the beast and sees a hero now. She says he just needs to learn to see him. Back in the old world, Merida practiced her archery as Belle admires her skills. She says her father Fergus said learning to fight was just as important in a kilt or a skirt. She shoots dead center time and again.
She asks if the potion is done. Belle asks if she knows what the potion will do and says it will turn her into a bear. Merida says it changes your fate. Belle asks if that will make her strong enough to rescue her brothers. Merida says it will and Belle says she doesn’t need the spell to change her fate and says she can make her own fate with her wit and bow and that could prove to the clans she can be their queen. Merida says that Belle is wrong.
Belle and Gold make it into the shop with him limping. She hands him a cane and then an arrow fires through the glass into the shop. Merida comes in and says she told the Dark One that he wouldn’t be daft enough to come to his shop. She says he can’t resist the magic so now Belle’s fate rests in his hands. They hide behind a shut door but the arrow shoots right through the wood and pierces near Belle’s head.
Regina brews up the potion down in her vault and they have Arthur there. He says David told them everything and Regina hands over the mushroom. He hesitates and says it’s best that they do this alone. He says Merlin only delivered prophecies when he was alone with him. David consents and they step away out of sight. Arthur kneels then tosses the mushroom into the fire below the cauldron. Then he comes out and says it didn’t work. He says the spell fizzled out.
The others are disappointed. Merida breaks through the doors but Gold and Belle have moved on. She heads into the room and spots them hiding. It’s a reflection and she shoots out the mirror. She tells Gold to stop her and calls him a coward. She says be the hero they all need. She says forgive me and then Belle yanks the rug out from under her and knocks her out cold. Gold opens a safe and grabs a bag. He says this can keep them safe.
Back in the other world, Merida and Belle creep closer. She sees her three brothers blindfolded and tied to stakes. Belle asks why she needs the potion. She says she and her father fought invaders from another land. She says a man in a helmet came for her father and she shot to save him but missed and the knight ran her father through. She says her father is dead because of her. Belle says she lost her mother in the ogre wars and also blamed herself.
Belle says she had to forgive herself and Merida must do the same. Merida says that’s why the clans lost faith in her. She asks Belle for the potion. She hands it over. Now, Gold drives Belle to the town line and he says he has powder that will protect them. Belle says they can’t leave and he says Emma will keep coming until he gets what she wants. Gold says he couldn’t even protect her from Merida. Belle demands that he stop the car. He does and she hops out. She goes marching back into town.
Gold asks her to get back in the car. She says no. Belle says running never made anyone a hero and he says he’s not a hero. She says he was brave before. He says in the first ogre war, he didn’t cripple himself to get back to Baelfire, he did it because he was scared. He says he joined the Army to prove he wasn’t a coward but when he saw the wounded, he was scared and didn’t want to die. He tells her he’s a coward and that will never change. He begs her to get back in the car.
Belle says this is how he wants to protect himself. She walks off. Gold cries as he watches her go. He gets into the car and cranks it. He looks at the sign indicating the town line. Belle walks back towards town and finds Merida there. She says Belle should have followed her wee sweetheart. Merida says the Dark One isn’t taking any chances and she drinks down a potion. It turns her into a vicious bear. Belle is terrified and starts running.
Back in the other world, Merida watches the three clans talk about killing her brothers and says they will unite their clans and erase Merida’s claim to the throne. She shows up and says let them go. She pulls a bottle and drinks down the potion. She says he’ll be very sorry in just a moment. The others mock her. Nothing happens. She asks if Belle mixed it right. She says she just gave her water instead. Belle says if she used magic to win, the clans won’t follow her. She says she needs to do it without magic.
Belle tells her she knows she can do this. They tell her she can relinquish the crown and save her brothers. She says she’s the rightful queen. The three other leaders all take aim at her brothers and fire their arrows. Merida screams and fires her arrows. She shoots down their arrows in mid-flight. They draw swords then so does she. She says let them go. The other men of the clans scramble to untie them and kneel to Merida’s might. The leaders have no choice but to kneel as well.
Merida tells them they are lucky someone once taught her the value of mercy. Her brothers run to hug her and she tells them it will all be okay. Belle watches with a smile. Now, Belle runs through the forest. Merida, as a bear, is hot on her heels growling. Belle falls and takes a tumble. The bear stands and roars and Belle begs Merida to listen. She tells her not to do this. She roars but then is hit with a rock. It’s Gold. Belle tells him to run but he says he won’t do it this time. He tells Belle to go.
He faced off with the bear. The bear knocks him down then sniffs his face. He says do your worst. He grabs the bag of powder and throws it in the bear’s mouth. It’s anti-transformation powder and turns the bear back to Merida. Belle asks how he knew that would work. He says he didn’t know. Belle says he saved her and she knew he had it in her. He tells Belle she’s the one who saved him. They embrace. Back in the other world, Merida offers to help Belle with her quest.
Belle says she hopes she can find a way to save the man she loves but she won’t give up. Belle tells Merida she hopes their paths cross again. They hug and Belle gets into the boat and Merida pushes her out onto the loch. Back at Granny’s, Merlin looks at Apollo chocolate bars. Emma is there and says she has the strangest sense of déjà vu. He says the last time he saw one, a little girl had it. Emma flashes back to being a little girl at the movies and Merlin warning her about the sword.
He says she remembers and she says he was the usher at the theatre then asks how it was possible. He asks if she remembers the message. He says he told her she would have the opportunity to remove it from the stone. He says the sword will return to the stone and it’s more important than ever that she leaves it alone. He says the fate of everyone she loves depends upon that. Merida brings Gold to the basement and says he bested her.
Belle is with him too. Gold says as a former Dark One, he knows she won’t stop until he pulls the sword from the stone. He says he knows she won’t be able to resist making a deal. He says he will pull the sword in exchange for Merida’s heart and Merida says she wants to know where her brothers are. Emma shoves the heart back in her chest. Belle asks what if Gold can’t pull the sword from the stone. Emma says Belle will be sweeping up his remains.
Gold starts to pull it out then stops and tells Belle he’s sorry for everything in case this doesn’t work. He says he would make sure he was the man she deserved if he had the chance and says he would change everything for her. She says it’s never too late. He grabs the hilt of Excalibur and pulls it free. He’s stunned that it worked. Emma stares at it. He says a deal is a deal and throws it down at Emma’s feet. He says she has it but made one terrible mistake. He says she turned him into a hero.
She says there are heroes all over this town that haven’t stopped her. He says none of them are him. Regina tells Mary that she did the spell correctly and David finds the mushroom in the fire and they know Arthur lied. They wonder why he didn’t want them to contact Merlin. Regina says there was one other person in Storybrooke chosen by Merlin – the author. They bring in Henry and ask if he’s okay with this. He says Emma is still in there somewhere and they need to get her back.
Hook tells him he can do this. Henry drops in the mushroom and the cauldron bubbles then smokes and Merlin appears. Henry says his name and Merlin says things are worse than he feared. Regina says it’s Merlin’s voice mail. He says only Nimue can help them defeat the Dark One now. He looks behind him in fear then says – the Dark One has found me already. They wonder what Emma did to Merlin.