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This article focuses on the Wish Realm version of Rumplestiltskin.

Mr. Samdi: Trying to get back to your beloved has made you the worst version of you.
Rumplestiltskin: Well, I find that really insulting. I mean, I'm the worst version of me.

Mr. Samdi and Rumplestiltskin (Wish Realm) to Weaver src

Rumplestiltskin, also known as the Dark One and the Crocodile, is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. He débuts in the tenth episode of the sixth season. He is portrayed by starring cast member Robert Carlyle, and is the Wish Realm version of Rumplestiltskin.


After Third Curse

In this realm created by the Evil Queen's wish for Emma to have never been the Savior, Rumplestiltskin purposely injures his own leg during the Ogre Wars, and much like his other self, receives a prophecy from a seer about a boy who will eventually become his undoing. In this realm, he is still the Dark One and the Queen's magic instructor. He gives her the Dark Curse, but she fails to cast it and is later defeated by Snow White and Prince Charming. Rumplestiltskin is locked up at some point in the dungeon of the Evil Queen's old palace, where his powers are rendered useless, leaving him incapable of escaping from the confines of his prison. ("Wish You Were Here", "Knightfall", "Homecoming")

After being locked up for quite some time, Rumplestiltskin's first visitor is Hook, who surprisingly has not come to exact his revenge on him but wants his help in obtaining magic that can free his daughter, Alice, from a tower. Since the dungeon prevents Rumplestiltskin from using his magic, Hook agrees to free him if he helps him in return. Rumplestiltskin consents to the deal, telling him tells him about Maui's fish hook, a magical item in Captain Ahab's possession, which can shatter any prison. When Hook later returns to the dungeon with the fish hook, he is unexpectedly followed there by Ahab, who mocks him for aiding the Dark One and needing his help to save Alice. Ahab demands a public duel with Hook so others can see him for who he really is, while Rumplestiltskin insists Hook free him first and he can destroy Ahab for him. After Hook declines Rumplestiltskin's offer and instead consents to a pistol duel with Ahab, the Dark One is left in the dungeon, still trapped. ("Knightfall")

One day, Regina comes to seek out Rumplestiltskin. He has no interest in helping her and recalls how she failed him with the curse, however, Regina clarifies the Evil Queen he knew was not her as she is not from this reality. Rumplestiltskin becomes intrigued by her claims that this world he resides in is not actually real and it was made to trap Emma. Recalling Emma as the Savior, Rumplestiltskin considers that he can help her after all if she frees him from the dungeon. Regina declines, even when Rumplestiltskin implies letting him out won't do any harm, especially since he's apparently not real. When she still refuses, he reveals Emma became the Savior is because of Regina since every Savior needs a villain as a reminder that the world needs saving from evil. To further persuade Regina into letting him out, Rumplestiltskin reminds her that she doesn't have a way back to Storybrooke after rescuing Emma. He promises her a magic bean, to which Regina finally consents to freeing him. Afterward, Regina prompts him for the bean, and he tells her to meet him tomorrow at noon by the lake to get it. Regina prepares to leave, but Rumplestiltskin points out she also needs to look the part of the Evil Queen if she wants to push Emma into becoming the Savior. When Regina morphs into more Queenly attire, Rumplestiltskin giggles with approval and urges her to fulfill her mission. ("Wish You Were Here")

The next day, Rumplestiltskin arrives at the lake with the bean and overhears Emma telling Regina about her concern about what the Dark One will do now that he's free. After giving them the bean, he takes his leave, saying that he is off to raze "fake" villages. ("Wish You Were Here")

Sometime after this, Rumplestiltskin goes to a tower to track down the woman he loves, Belle, only to find all that is left of her is her bones after she was kidnapped and starved to death by the Evil Queen. He then rescues Regina and Robin as they are being held captive by the Sheriff of Nottingham, but when Regina requests his help getting off her cuff, he reveals how Belle died. Despite Regina's insistence that she is not accountable for the Queen's actions in this realm, Rumplestiltskin decides he still wants someone, namely her, to pay for what happened. After escorting both Regina and Robin into his castle dungeon, he notes that it's been a while since he has flayed someone so he'll have to clean his tools first before getting started. However, while Rumplestiltskin is away, Robin manages to picklock the dungeon door so he and Regina can escape. ("Tougher Than the Rest")

Rumplestiltskin later travels to an unnamed realm where he encounters Sir Henry after he has just lost a princess' favor to another prince. Henry is displeased to see the Dark One and draws his sword on him, stating that he is not in the mood for his games. Rumplestiltskin wants to offer him a deal, but Henry knows better than to trust him since all his deals come with a price that he is not interested in paying. The Dark One insists he should consider it as he can give him whatever he desires, though Henry states he will be all right as he is. When Rumplestiltskin suggests that may be so, Henry rebukes him for threatening him. In response, Rumplestiltskin seizes his neck before letting him go as he suggests it's simply an observation and if he changes his mind, the offer still stands. Henry declines once again and calls out the Dark One for his manipulative tactics in making people feel desperate enough to believe they can only get what they want from doing the wrong things. He professes that he will find his happy ending by doing the right things without Rumplestiltskin's help. Henry then turns to leave as Rumplestiltskin suggestively murmurs to himself that only time will tell. ("Homecoming")

After Fifth Curse

At some point, Sir Henry's attempts to find his happy ending fail and he eventually consents to a deal with the Dark One. Rumplestiltskin eventually leaves the Wish Realm and arrives in Seattle in the Land Without Magic. Once the Dark Curse is broken by the older Henry of this realm, Rumplestiltskin's counterpart, Weaver, confronts Mr. Samdi about stealing a book that contains his memories with his version of Belle. Weaver almost kills Mr. Samdi but stops upon remembering Belle, and Mr. Samdi begins to taunt him for having turned into the worst version of himself. Before Samdi can finish mocking Weaver, Rumplestiltskin stabs him in the back and kills him, acting insulted as he considers himself the worst version of Rumplestiltskin. He then tells Weaver that it's time they got better reacquainted. ("Is This Henry Mills?", "Homecoming")

After killing Samdi, Rumplestiltskin gags Weaver, places an cuff to disable his magic, and hides him behind a wall waterfall in Samdi's office. He then kidnaps the older Henry's wife and daughter and traps them in a snow globe in his castle in the Wish Realm before pressuring him into giving him Weaver's dagger if he wishes to see his family again. Rumplestiltskin explains the necessity of the situation, in that, if Weaver forfeits his Dark One powers to the Guardian so he can reunite with Belle, he himself will lose his powers as well, and then expresses disgust at how love has made his lesser half weak. Later, Rumplestiltskin purposely cracks Tilly's looking glass so that he can manipulate where Henry, Roni, Rogers, and Weaver end up when they go to the Wish Realm to rescue Henry's family. For Henry and Roni, he sends them to his castle, where they encounter his father Peter Pan, whom he is holding prisoner in a pillory, and his castle guard Cruella, whom Henry and Roni trap in a dog cage. As for Rogers and Weaver, he sends them to the Wish Realm replica of the farm to remind Weaver of the coward he has always been, though Rogers manages to procure squid ink from a mermaid. Upon Roni and Henry discovering Jacinda and Lucy are now trapped in the snow globe, Rumplestiltskin appears to remind them that the only way he will let them go is if they fulfill their end of the deal. Henry is unwilling to exchange Weaver's happy ending for his own and Roni wants to figure out an alternate way, but Rumplestiltskin gives them limited time by creating a snowstorm inside the globe, telling them they have until midnight before Henry's family dies. ("Homecoming")

Returning to the farm alone, Weaver gives the dagger to Rumplestiltskin, professing that he is the perfect loophole for being free of his powers. Rumplestiltskin gladly takes the weapon from him but is then paralyzed because Weaver coated the blade handle with squid ink. Weaver prepares to kill him with the dagger before Roni bursts in, with enough time passing for the ink's effect on Rumplestiltskin to wear off. Rumplestiltskin knocks Roni out and magically chokes Weaver as he tells him that he was never after the dagger, but wanted to stop the Seer's prophecy by killing the boy who was foreseen to be his undoing: Henry. When adult Henry obtains the Author's pen and ink, Rumplestiltskin seizes both from him before young Henry comes in, revealing he made a deal with the Dark One to get his happy ending. After Roni, Rogers, and Weaver join them, Henry is given the pen by Rumplestiltskin, who dictates out loud to him to write the Guardian's powers out of existence. Once it is done, Rumplestiltskin teleports Henry, Rogers, and Weaver into the same crystal ball world as Jacinda and Lucy, though Roni is left behind to allow young Henry to punish her for killing his grandparents and taking away his mother. ("Homecoming", "Leaving Storybrooke")

Later, Rumplestiltskin makes a new spell, one which allows him to create storybooks for each person in the Wish Realm to condemn them to prison realms where they live out their unhappy endings. Since potent darkness within the Author is needed to open the portals to the realms, the Dark One has the Blue Fairy brought in as a test subject for the spell. Rumplestiltskin carefully guides Sir Henry into reliving how satisfying it was for him when he cut Roni earlier with his knife, to which a vortex opens and pulls the Blue Fairy into it. Just as Weaver finds magic to enable himself to rip out the Dark One's heart, Rumplestiltskin informs his other self and the heroes that they are too late. Sir Henry, whose heart reaches its peak of darkness as he attempts to kill Roni, enabling Weaver, Tilly, Margot, Rogers, and Henry's prison portals to open, however, the portals close without absorbing any of them after Roni persuades Sir Henry to turn away from his darkness. Weaver, who lost his immortality and power because Rumplestiltskin used the Author's pen to remove them, uses his last chance of defeating the Dark One by ripping out his own heart and giving it to a dying Rogers. This sacrifice kills not only Weaver but also Rumplestiltskin, who can do nothing as he crumbles into nonexistence, due to the Darkness being destroyed by Weaver's sacrifice. Trembling in fear, his last words are a forlorn, "No more Rumple?". ("Leaving Storybrooke")

Magical Abilities

  • Telekinesis - Ability to control the movement of the environment.
  • Teleportation - Ability to magically teleport oneself and/or others from one location to another.


Production Notes


See also


  1. Abrams, Natalie (May 4, 2018). Once Upon a Time reveals final villain. Entertainment Weekly. “"One of the most fearsome villains that has ever been on the show was Rumplestiltskin," executive producer Edward Kitsis tells EW. "Wish Realm Rumplestiltskin is a version of Rumplestiltskin without Baelfire or Belle. So, you are talking about a Rumplestiltskin without hope. He is unleashed."”
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