“Once Upon A Time” recap (5.04): Sands of Avalon


Previously on Once Upon a Time, David got invited to join King Arthur’s Knights of the Round Table because he failed a quest miserably, Emma almost murdered Merida but then didn’t, and Regina told Camelot she was the Savior to try to save Emma from herself.

A long, long time ago, a tiny cocky boy named Arthur tells a little girl that he had a dream that a tree wizard told him he was going to pull a weapon from a rock and be king someday. For some reason, the girl is into this, and she giggles and smiles at him. A bully shows up and tells Arthur that his dreams are stupid and that this is a broken kingdom that will never have a king so he should just give up now.

But years later, never having forgotten this dream, a grown Arthur pulls Excalibur from the rock and comes back to the broken kingdom that’s now his. He hides the fact that it’s broken for them, and hugs his lady wife, who apparently is into the crazy, saying his quest has only just begun.

Years later, David and David talk about reunited the Dark One dagger with Excalibur and other boring dudestuff while Emma is in her castle room whittling to pass the time.


RumpleVoice tells her to listen to the whispers she hears and they lead her to Regina’s closet, where her dagger is being hidden. Regina’s too smart to just leave it lying around though, so there are some protection spells on it. RumpleVoice tries to convince her she can still magic it free, but Emma throws some magic at him instead. Since he’s not corporeal, the magic flies past him and almost hits a lurking Hook. That sound you hear is the collective groan of disappointment from the #queerytales crew when Hook enters the room unscathed.

Emma tells Hook that she can’t get the RumpleVoice out of her head and then goes catatonic. Her family and friends come in to check on her, worried, but Regina is the most worried of them all. She yells at everyone to stop their yapping and tries to make excuses as to why Emma was in her room in the first place, blaming the dagger and not the gravitational pull between them.  

OUAT 504-2“The closet?! No Emma’s not in the—oh, oh. The dagger closet. Sure, let’s go with that.”

David and Mary Margaret fight about whether they should trust Arthur or Lancelot and Regina poofs out so fast and oh how I wish she took me with her. I would rather watch Regina Mills brush her hair for 20 minutes than listen to David nearly pull something trying to use his broken version of logic.

Flashback Arthur is in a feverish rage, translating symbols and scrolls trying to figure out where the Dark One’s Dagger is. There are just three symbols he can’t decipher: star, eye, sun. Guinevere is worried about him, and just wants him to come outside and dance with her on her birthday. He says he’ll be out in a minute, and she goes out to wait for him. But Lancelot finds her first, asking her to dance as the flower petals he arranged are showered over them. Gwen realizes that Lancelot cares about her and her husband only cares about the Dagger, but they’re interrupted by Arthur, who has solved the fiddle. He’s off to find the Dagger, and tells Lancelot to stay behind and protect the Queen.

Five years later, David goes to see Arthur and confesses that he’ll do anything to destroy the darkness in the Dark One and will help Arthur restore Excalibur. He also tells Arthur all about Emma being the Dark One and Lancelot being back in Camelot/alive because he’s the worst.

In flashback Camelot, Lancelot catches Gwen being shady.

OUAT 504-3“If I don’t do something, I’ll be stuck in this plot line FOREVER.”

So he joins Gwen, who is using a magic gauntlet to the Dark One’s dagger, since it’s Arthur’s biggest weakness. They find a manhole with symbols on it, and Gwen touches the symbols she remembers Arthur rambling about: star, eye, sun. The manhole opens and the black goo oozes out and turns into a stairwell. For some reason, Lancelot and Gwen think this looks like a fun adventure, and descend into the darkness.

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