Poll and discussion: What did you think of “The Return”?

Once Upon a Time is back!

What did you think?


Last time, we started the discussion in the “poll thread” comments, instead of waiting for the recap. I thought that worked out really well, so maybe we could try it again.

My first-impression comments and questions are after the jump (warning, if you’re in a later time zone and haven’t seen the episode yet — there are total spoilers there):

The show faked me out! As the episode unfolded, and it seemed to be leading up to the revelation that August was Baelfire, I was so proud of myself that I had figured it out weeks ago — I thought I had outsmarted the writers — thought that the writers hadn’t counted on everyone pooling their wisdom on the blogs and figuring it all out in advance — and then — fake out! It wasn’t Baelfire after all! I didn’t see that coming until the moment August-whoever-he-is picked up the knife. Wow, great twist, show.

Loved the moment where Rumple was pawing at the ground, after it closed up after Baelfire had gone through, when Rumpel finally decided to go through, but it was too late. Rumpel is always a moment too late — first with Baelfire, then with Belle — and he must live with his regrets always.

So we finally got an explanation of the curse.

And Emma is throwing down the gauntlet and challenging Regina over Henry.

It feels like this episode is a turning point in the show.

Questions (been adding some new ones as I think of them):

Were you surprised at the twist, or did you see it coming?

Who did August call in the first scene? Was he calling Henry, or was it a secret accomplice?

Now who do you think August is? Do you think he’s Pinocchio? What is he doing in Storybrooke?

How does August know so much — he has a drawing of Rumpel’s dagger, he calls Emma the “Savior” — I guess he could have just read about everything in Henry’s book — but if August is not the author of Henry’s book, then who is the author? And if August IS the author of Henry’s book, then how did he know everything?

Where (or who) is the real Baelfire?

Or … could there be a double twist and could August be Baelfire after all?

52 responses to “Poll and discussion: What did you think of “The Return”?

  1. I have and I am still holding out that August may be Pinocchio. It was such a great fake out tonight. I think the writers took that bit of information from the boards and decided to have a little bit of fun with us. Remember the forum. One of the writers stated that someone may have already figured out who August was. I think that was a lead on to this week’s trick. Does anyone have any ideas about who the doctor is? I know that he is not a major character, but it’s driving me crazy.

    • I haven’t seen The Return yet because it airs tonight, but I’m also beginning to think that August might be Pinocchio.

      Emma was born in FTL, so technically she existed in the fairy tales as well. The wardrobe was built by Gepetto and Pinocchio, which sent Emma to Boston. As logic goes, if Emma had stayed in FTL she would been just another citizen of SB but as a newborn. So, if Gepetto knew about the curse, wouldn’t he just have built a separate compartment for Pinocchio to escape as well?

      • Pinocchio would not need an extra compartment because he’s made of wood. Maybe he’s made out of the magical tree that saved Emma.

  2. Funny enough…about a week after I made my prediction that August was Bae, I decided I was wrong and that be was Pinocchio (which he is, even though I hate the idea.) then as I watched the episode I stuck to that until the moment with Gold and Archie because it made me tear up. So I decided, to hell with the Pinocchio theory, he’s Bae. I’m goinf to be proven right. But no. Sigh. I cried a lot during this episode. Especially during what we thought was an amazing father-son moment. Anyway. Great episode. Loved it almost as much as “Skin Deep” which is a lot :)

  3. That father-son moment got to me too.

    Just thought of another question. If Rumpel created the curse in order to rejoin Bae, but if Storybrooke didn’t exist until the curse created it, then where did Bae go when he went through the green CGI vortex? Somewhere near where the future Storybrooke would be — maybe Boston??

  4. Also, if August is Pinocchio and he’s not supposed to lie, didn’ t he sort of lie (at least by omission) by leading Rumpel on and letting Rumpel believe he was Bae?

    • Thats probably why he need magic. He keep lying and its killing him.

    • I agree with Ava. That is why he is sick. because he is lying this whole time. And i believe that Bae did go to “real” world when he went through the vortex. Blue faery said that it was the last bean that would lead him to where there is not magic. He is somewhere out there and the writers are setting themselves up for more story in the season’s to come. I also believe that he is Henry’s father. Emma did say something about Henry’s father being a FIREman. even though it was a lie.

    • Perhaps August is Bae…did he ever actually admit or deny it?

  5. Kansas anyone? Am I the only one that saw that the license plate of August’s bike said Kansas and had the date of 1984. 1984 is 28 years from 2012…… Could August be from Kansas, if August is Rumple’s son, could he have gone to Kansas (another world, without magic) via a green tornado from the ground, anyone see any correlations to another story?
    So crazy…

  6. Also, there was Toto from the wizard of oz, so the Kansas theory is very possible

  7. The episode was at 03.00 AM in Spain, i was shocked, i liked it so much …now im sleepy but it was worth

  8. If Bae went to Boston, maybe he met up with Emma and he is Henry’s father.

  9. I thought that everything was too obvious for him to be Baelfire. The mother superior especially. August just told her what to tell Mr. Gold to get him to believe he was Bael. I thought that if it was that easy that it was a trap (before the Mr. Gold/August meeting) or the writers and actors were really bad. I settled on the first option. I think that the person he talked to on the phone may be Baelfire or that August really is Baelfire and he wanted to see if his father was really serious. Another option is that Baelfire is Henry’s dad.

    • Haha. I posted my comment before I read yours, but I completely agree that Baelfire could be Henry’s dad.

    • He could have been honest about looking for his father. After all, if he is Pinocchio, then Gepetto is his dad, and he’s in Storybrooke too.

  10. Anyone else think that Baelfire is Henry’s father?

    • I love that theory!
      Especially because I’m am cordially pissed off at August, it’d be nice to see a good Bae, even though technically Emma said he was a bad person.
      Oh well…I bet he’s not. And I’d take anyone over August the Faker Booth >:(

  11. Loved this episode. I was so sucked in.
    Didn’t Emma technically leave FTL before the curse was evoked? I think Pinocchio was in the wardrobe and that August is Pinocchio. Who was he talking to? I think it was Baelfire. I think Baelfire met Pinocchio and found out what happened with the curse. Then it took them some time to find Storybrook. They must have known something about the book. August knew/knows alot about Storybrook. He also knew how to convince Mr Gold. He knew what to say. That is because Bae has filled him in about his dad.
    Do you think Gheppeto sent Pinocchio to this new land with a plan? If he was in the wardrobe, why didn’t he stay with Emma?

    Also, do you think the magic that made Pinocchio a “real boy” is wearing off? That is why he is limping and said he was dieing because he is going to turn back into a wooden boy.

  12. I think August called the Blue Fairy on the phone and that the Blue Fairy really knows what’s going on in SB. They are working together get Emma to believe.

  13. I just love reading all of your theories!
    When we first met August, I immeidately thought was that he was Henry’s dad, but dismissed it, because Emma would surely recognize him, right?
    I now believe that he is Pinocchio, and that he needs the magic to keep him turning back to wood. I think he was carved from the same wood as the wardrobe, explaining why he can come and go from Storybrooke.
    I also really like the thought that his mystery accomplice on the phone was Bael, because that would explain his knowledge of Rumple. I am also leaning towards Bael being Henry’s son, since he is also able to leave Storybrooke.
    The episode was great, can’t wait to see what happens next!

  14. Yikes, sorry for all the typos!

  15. Gapeto only agreed to do the “booth” that saved emma from the curse if it could benefit his son as well. i think that they turned him into a real boy and he could only stay that way if he never lied again. August is “sick” because he is turning back into wood since he is lying so much.

  16. A couple of things I noticed:
    1. The big scar on the stranger’s neck – has he been to Wonderland?
    2. The writers through out a Harry Potter reference when Rumple mentioned “time-turner” – maybe Harry is the father, jk

  17. Just had a thought. What if the “booth” of August W. Booth was in fact referring to the wardrobe? That would be another clue towards Pinnochio.

  18. Do you think that they Blue Fairy/Mother Superior knows and is just not letting on to Gold and the Queen. Because if she is more powerful then Rumple in Fairytale Land, then how would the curse effect her? Won’t her power protect her from the curse especially since she sorta knew that Rumple was going to try to get Bae back?

    I don’t know why I am not a fan of August being Pinocchio but the signs are pointing that way so if the Blue Fairy knows, maybe August was talking to her in the first scene. She was the one that made him a real boy and since there is no magic in this land then she is helping him the only way that she can, plotting to get Emma to believe.

  19. I think it’s been pretty well established that August W Boothe is not Bae. I still stand by my weeks ago post that he is Pinnochio.

    I agree with the “cicifon” on how August may have come up with his name. “In August I went into the booth” LOL Hey, he was 7 at the time and couldn’t come up with anything better!

  20. Oops!!! I gave credit to the wrong poster! It was OUATcrazed that mentioned it.

  21. August must be pinnochio! Although I’ve been saying this from the beginning I do believe this episode confirmed it. The biggest clue was when Gold went to August’s hotel room and picked up the donkey
    paperweight/figurine-remember that pinnochio was turned into donkey in thr original/Disney story? August also sought advice from Mother Superior who is in actuality the blue fairy whom he sought counsel with in FTL. He also went to her and asked for advice because he was reuniting with his estranged father with whom he had a difficult parting with. An of course said father is Gepetto!

  22. Massive Spoilers. Read No further.

    The biggest clue to the identity of August was his paperweight. All the other charcters attributes have bled through their baubles of choice and this is no diffrent

  23. I also think that August is Pinocchio. Most people have mentioned a lot of the clues:

    1. The paper weight was a donkey.
    2. AWB = A wooden boy
    3. Pinocchio could have been made with the same wood as the wardrobe and crossed over when Emma did.

    The other thing I was thinking . . .
    4. The other clue is how August spoke with Emma about how water is magic. Based on some of the previews from next week it looks like Pinocchio was put into water to turn into a real boy.

  24. The name “August” — is related to the word ‘augment’ (as in to Lie, like Pinocchio, or maybe relates to his nose growing when he lied). Booth relates to the wardrobe?

What do you think?