For the main reality character, see Apprentice.
For the Wish Realm character, see Apprentice (Wish Realm).
"The Apprentice" is the fourth episode of Season Four of ABC's Once Upon a Time. It was written by Andrew Chambliss & Dana Horgan, and directed by Ralph Hemecker. It is the seventieth episode of the series overall, and premiered on October 19, 2014.
After Emma asks Hook out on a real first date, Hook visits Mr. Gold and asks for his hand to be reattached so that he can embrace her with both hands. But magic always comes with a price. Henry and Mary Margaret try to offer hope to Regina when she becomes frustrated over not being able to find a cure to save a frozen Marian, and Will Scarlet attempts to break into the Storybrooke library to find a special book. Meanwhile, back in the Fairy Tale Land that was, Rumplestiltskin is after a magical box that the Sorcerer's apprentice is guarding, and he may use Elsa’s sister Anna to help him get it.
The Apprentice is sweeping his basement, when an unknown Dark One intrudes, later revealed to be Zoso. The Dark One knocks him aside and attempts to open a box, but is repelled by an enchantment placed on it by the Sorcerer. The Apprentice tells the Dark One that the box cannot be opened by someone who has succumbed to the darkness in their heart. The Dark One vanishes in a rage, and the Apprentice says that no Dark One will ever open the box.
Anna arrives at Rumplestiltskin's castle and talks to him about the disappearance of her parents. Rumplestiltskin offers to help if she puts the contents of a vial into the Apprentice's drink telling her that the Apprentice is an evil man. Anna states that she will do "whatever it takes" to find out why her parents visited the Enchanted Forest and Rumplestiltskin comments that he loves when people say they will do whatever it takes. Anna goes to the Apprentice's cottage and after a brief conversation she has a chance to put the vial's contents into his tea but instead decides to throw them into the fire thinking that it is poison. Anna arrives back at Rumplestiltskin's castle and informs him that she gave the contents of the vial to the Apprentice. Mr. Gold says that is good because it is an antidote to a poison he was given yesterday. Anna, horrified by this, tells Rumplestiltskin the truth and says they must go back to the cottage. They look in Rumplestiltskin's crystal ball and see the man succumbing to the poison by turning into a mouse.
They go to the cottage and Rumplestiltskin states he won't change the man back if they find him because the Apprentice is protecting the box. Anna realizes that Rumplestiltskin is the person who poisoned the Apprentice. He goes on to tell her that the man is just the first line of defense. In order to open the box he needs magic from someone who faced their inner darkness and succeeded as he was planning on Anna not giving the antidote. Anna says that she doesn't have inner darkness and Rumplestiltskin reminds her that due to the contract she will spend the rest of her life in his tower. Rumplestiltskin taunts Anna by stating that Elsa will be heartbroken since Anna left because of her and become a monster. He also states that the wedding will now be off. Anna refuses to accept this and holds a sword to Rumplestiltskin's heart, demanding him to rip up the contract. He urges her to run him through with the sword, but she collapses after having thought about actually killing Rumplestiltskin. Anna sheds a tear, which Rumplestiltskin collects on his dagger which allows him to open the box. Anna chides Rumplestiltskin for using love as a weapon, but he replies that love is a weapon, it is just that he knows how to wield it more than others.
Rumplestiltskin emerges from the vault with the box and Anna tells him to tell her what happened to her parents since she helped him retrieve the box. Rumplestiltskin tells Anna that the King and Queen of Arendelle arrived on his doorstep seeking a way to take away Elsa's powers forever. Anna argues that her parents loved Elsa, but Rumplestiltskin argues that their actions implied that they feared her. He tells her that they did not find what they were looking for, but the box contains the Sorcerer's hat which can take away any person's magic. Rumplestiltskin states that the hat will make him unstoppable when the hat has enough power. Anna tells him that the Apprentice could stop him, but Rumplestiltskin states he is no longer there. However, the Apprentice, now in the form of a mouse, jumps onto Rumplestiltskin's hand and bites him, causing him to drop the dagger. Anna picks up the dagger and realizes that she can control him with the it. Anna uses the dagger to force Rumplestiltskin to give her the box, and saying he will never harm either of the sisters and their family, as well as commanding him to turn the Apprentice back into his human form. He agrees and sends Anna away in a puff of red smoke, before screaming in a fit of a rage.
Back in Arendelle, Kristoff is talking to Sven when all of a sudden, Anna appears. The two embrace and share a kiss. She tells Kristoff that her parents left Arendelle to find a way to get rid of Elsa's powers, and Anna says she has no idea what to tell Elsa.
Mr. Gold opens the box in his shop and produces the Sorcerer's hat. Emma arrives at Granny's Diner and asks Hook out on a date. Hook makes Emma promise to let him plan the date. She leaves and on the way to her car she notices a puddle underneath it that was not there when she entered. Mr. Gold arrives at his shop to find Hook sitting on a counter. Hook asks Mr. Gold to reattach his hand because Hook knows that Belle has a fake dagger. Mr. Gold does so but warns Hook that he is no longer the man that hand belonged to and attaching it may have unforeseen consequences. David and Mary Margaret are shown helping Elsa at their loft by going through the census records. Emma asks their opinion wearing a dress for her date with Hook and all three are breathless. Hook arrives and presents Emma with a red rose from his newly restored hand. Emma is impressed by Hook's dating clothing. Hook tells Emma to refer to him as Killian. When Emma and Hook are having dinner at Tony's, they are noticed by Will Scarlet who tries to exit without them noticing but accidentally knocks wine on to Emma's lap. Hook grabs Will and tells him to apologize to Emma in a menacing voice. When Emma recognizes him from the incident with the ice cream shop Will runs from the couple. Hook looks at his hand and begins to wonder about Mr. Gold's warning.
Regina and Henry are going through Regina's stores of potions in her vault and cannot find something that will unfreeze "Marian". Henry surmises that Robin Hood is still in love with Regina because true love's kiss did not unfreeze her. Regina says that this time Henry may be too young to fully understand everything. Hook walks Emma home and at the door to the loft they share a kiss after Emma jokingly invites him in for coffee with her parents. During the kiss Hook notices his left hand again acting aggressively. Emma walks inside and has a brief conversation with her parents, who are eager to hear about the date. Hook runs into a drunk Will Scarlet trying to break into the library and punches him in the face when Will refuses to stop. Hook again is put off by his hand controlling his actions and tells Will that if he informs anyone of what happened he will be a dead man.
As Mr. Gold is preparing to go home in his car Hook enters the passenger door and tells Mr. Gold to replace his hand with the hook. He refuses, saying Hook should've heeded his warnings. Hook threatens to inform Belle of the dagger, but Gold then tells Hook that he has swapped the daggers and that Belle has the actual dagger. Mr. Gold says he will replace the Hook once Hook does a favor for him. He refuses to give Hook a definite date or time and Hook states he can find a way to remove it without magic. Mr. Gold tells Hook that since his magic restored the hand, only his magic can take it off. Enraged, Hook thrusts the hook into Gold's chest. Mr. Gold is unharmed, stating he would have thought Hook would have learned the first time he tried to kill Rumplestiltskin. Hook states that it wasn't him that did that, and Mr. Gold states that the next time he may harm someone else who he cares about. Hook states he will do whatever it takes and Mr. Gold says that he loves it when people say that. He tells Hook to meet him on the docks in the morning.
Emma is driving through the town when her car spins out on a small patch of ice. She chases the Snow Queen and demands to know why she is being followed, but the Snow Queen vanishes. Belle calls Emma and tells her to meet her at the library because there is a situation. Will Scarlet is seen in the library next to a bottle of alcohol and a copy of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Mr. Gold finds Hook sleeping on the docks and wakes him. He produces a broom and tells Hook it is going to help him find an old friend. When Mr. Gold lets go of the broom it begins walking off and he tells Hook to follow it. Mr. Gold and Hook arrive at a red house in town and knock on the door. The Apprentice answers the door and Mr. Gold tells Hook to force him into a chair. Mr. Gold then opens the box and produces the hat. The Apprentice tells Mr. Gold that no Dark One ever succeeds with the hat, stating that he will never have enough power to use it. Mr. Gold then uses the hat to pull the man into the hat and increase its power.
Back at Mr. Gold's shop he swaps Hook's hand for the actual hook, but says that their deal is not done. Hook says that it is done because he saw Mr. Gold use the real dagger to open the box, which means he is still lying to Belle. Mr. Gold produces a video tape with a recording from the house they just left, threatening to reveal it to Emma. Hook states he only did it to rid himself of the cursed hand to be a better man, and that Emma will understand that. Mr. Gold then reveals that the hand is not cursed, but it allowed Hook to be "the man he really is." Mr. Gold states the hand allows him to be his true pirate self and embrace his darkness. Hook threatens that he'll have no problem "crushing Belle's heart" with the truth of Gold's deception and Mr. Gold states if that happens, he will "lose" Emma. For his threats, Gold states that Hook now serves him for as long as he lives, anticipating the "fun" they will have together.
Emma visits the sheriff's station to talk to Will Scarlet and shows him the book he was found next to. He tries to say it has no meaning to him. Emma looks at his eye and asks what happened. Will sees Hook arrive and claims that he does not remember what happened to his eye. When Emma asks him about his hook being back, Hook states that Mr. Gold's magic wasn't what he had hoped it would be. David, going through documents with Elsa, tells Emma that the Snow Queen's alias, Sarah Fisher, is nowhere in any Storybrooke records stating that she did not arrive at the town via the curse. Hook, Emma, David and Elsa all look at each other wondering how the Snow Queen arrived at Storybrooke and Emma asks what she wants with her. Henry tells Regina that they need to talk to his other grandpa, Mr. Gold, about finding out who wrote the book to find the author. Regina says that Mr. Gold will not want to help her, so he goes to the shop and tells Mr. Gold that he wants to work at the shop. Henry states that because his father is dead Mr. Gold is the closest link to him, Mr. Gold agrees to let Henry be his apprentice, but tells him not to touch anything. Then, Mr. Gold hands him the broom he and Hook used to find the Apprentice. After Mr. Gold leaves, Henry begins to sweep the floor (in the same manner the Apprentice was sweeping earlier).
Belle and Mr. Gold are walking down a dock at the harbor. Belle asks her husband if he's sure he doesn't want her to help out at the pawnshop, but Gold laughs and says that he ran the shop for many years without her and he is sure he can manage a few days on his own. He says that he knows how important the library is to her, adding "You get it going again". A grateful Belle says that she is lucky to have ended up with someone like him, but Gold says that he is the lucky one. The two of them then share a kiss, before Gold asks her to go tend to her books.
Regina and Mary Margaret
The recap video at the beginning of the next episode, "Breaking Glass", contains an excerpt from a deleted scene from "The Apprentice", where Regina is in her office, discussing Robin Hood's commitment to his wife with Mary Margaret. ("He's honor-bound to stay with her. Therefore, I have to save her.")
- The title card features an enchanted broom.
- The title of this episode was announced by Adam Horowitz via his Twitter account on August 12, 2014.
- While shooting the scene where Emma asks Hook out, causing the dart he's throwing to miss completely, Colin O'Donoghue threw the dart without looking and accidentally hit the bullseye. His reaction ruined the scene. The clip was included in the DVD/Blu-ray blooper reel.
- A sequence where Hook cut off his re-attached hand with a "meat cleaver or something" was scripted, but the network thought this was far too dramatic. The idea was later reused in the Season Five premiere "The Dark Swan", where Zelena uses a knife to cut off her own hand.
- Storybrooke's radio station is called WOLF 98, and is the "home of the original party animal". This can be heard on Emma's car radio as she is driving though town.
- The Snow Queen's adopted alias in Storybrooke is Sarah Fisher. There was a Storybrooke business called "Sara's Old Fashioned Ice Cream", which happened to be located right next to Mr. Gold's pawnshop (the ice cream shop is gone by the time of "Fall", due to the fact that the real-life version in Steveston Village closed down). However, Jane Espenson has clarified that the other ice cream shop did not belong to the Snow Queen.
- The Apprentice's house number is 1940, which is the year Disney released Fantasia.
- Josh Dallas and Georgina Haig wrote an "extremely fascinating and revealing" story while filming a scene.
- The Enchanted Forest flashbacks occur in various places of the overall timeline.
- The Arendelle flashbacks occur after "Rocky Road" and before "Family Business". (For more details, see the Arendelle timeline)
- The Storybrooke events take place after "Rocky Road" and before "Breaking Glass". (For more details, see the Land Without Magic timeline)
- Mr. Gold was first shown to be capable of reattaching severed limbs/appendages in "The Doctor".
- Zoso's future fate is explained in "Desperate Souls".
- The hand in the jar, which Hook wanted back, is the hand he lost in "The Crocodile".
- Geppetto's parents's puppets are seen in the background in Rumplestiltskin's castle. How they became puppets is explained in "That Still Small Voice".
- One of the potion ingredients that Henry finds in Regina's vault is dragon scale. The same ingredient was used in Zelena's memory potion in "A Curious Thing".
- Another ingredient found by Henry is adder's fork. Hook finds the same ingredient in the vault in "Heartless".
- David says that he and Snow White never got the chance to send Emma to a ball. Mary Margaret previously talked about her about her dreams of sending Emma to her first ball in "Lady of the Lake". She eventually gets to send Emma to a real ball in "The Price".
- When Rumplestiltskin reveals that he knows Anna's real name, he refers to names as his "stock and trade". His habit of treating names as important is also referred to in "Pilot", "That Still Small Voice", "Queen of Hearts", "Manhattan" and "Changelings".
- Hook and Emma talk about what happened during Emma's date with Walsh in "New York City Serenade".
- Emma says that she needs her own place to live, which she eventually gets in "The Price".
- The crystal ball Rumplestiltskin uses to spy on the Apprentice, was brought from Oz by Jefferson in "The Doctor". It was also used to find Snow White in "Snow Drifts", and to spy on Anna in "White Out". It was also used by Neal to locate Emma in "The Heart of the Truest Believer".
- When stabbed by Hook's hooked hand, Mr. Gold comments on the first time the pirate stabbed him in the same way; referring to events in "The Crocodile".
- Rumplestiltskin uses tears to perform magic, which he also did in "Second Star to the Right".
- The Apprentice is freed from the Sorcerer's Hat in "Operation Mongoose Part 1".
- This is not the first time Mr. Gold uses magic to alter a security tape; he also did so after he "killed" Zelena, as seen in "Snow Drifts".
- Mr. Gold refers to Belle as "the only light in my life"; echoing a similar comment he made in "A Land Without Magic".
- Emma discovers an image featuring the Red Queen, who is Will's lover. Their backstory was explored on the Once Upon a Time spin-off, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.
- This episode features Elsa, Anna, Kristoff and Sven from the movie Frozen as well as their homeland Arendelle.
- The man and woman eating spaghetti at the restaurant are a reference to the famous scene from Lady and the Tramp. The waiters are dressed like Tony, the kelner from the movie, and according to the menu, the restaurant itself is called Tony's. The candles in a bottle and the table cloths are similar in appearance to the items in the famous movie scene.
- When Will tries to break into the library, and when Belle finds him the next morning, he's holding a bottle of MacCutcheon Scotch Whisky. This is a fictional brand featured on Lost.
Fairytales and Folklore
- This episode features the Apprentice and the magical broomstick from the poem "The Sorcerer's Apprentice", Rumplestiltskin from the "Rumpelstiltskin" fairy tale, the ugly duckling from the titular fairytale, Captain Hook from the Peter Pan, the Snow Queen from the fairytale of the same name, as well as the Knave of Hearts from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, who is also Will Scarlet from the Robin Hood ballad.
- Rumplestiltskin says to Anna that names are his stock and trade. This is a reference to the "Rumplestiltskin" fairytale, where the titular character consents to give up his claim on the miller's daughter's unborn child if she can guess his name within three days.
- After Emma's car skids on the ice, the car radio host takes a request from Rip Van Winkle, who is looking for a classic song to wake up to. This is a reference to the American short story of the same name. Rip van Winkle previously appeared in a deleted scene in the Season Three episode "Nasty Habits".
- Rumplestiltskin says he needs one of Anna's tears, a reference to the "The Snow Queen" fairytale, in which the titular character also needs a tear; one of Gerda's.
- Emma found the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll beside Will in the library.
- Mr. Gold agrees to let Henry be his apprentice and hands him a broom, a reference to "The Sorcerer's Apprentice".
- The part where Emma says to Hook, "You look...", and Hook answers, "I know", is a reference to the scene in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back where Princess Leia tells Han Solo that she loves him, and he answers, "I know".
- As Emma is driving through Storybrooke, the man on the radio says, "That was Left of the Dial by The Replacements"; a reference to a song on the rock band's 1985 album Tim.
8:1 Exemption clause has defined specified [illegible word] and limitation caused during the evaluation of signed contract may set a maximum on the amount of damages the party may have to pay if there is a failure of some sort of the [two illegible words] [image ends]
1:1 Acceptance of this contract dictates the unconditional agreement to this offer. This being "created contact". Here-in being written by his Royal Highness before acceptance any offer can be withdrawn, but once accepted this contract is bind [sic] on both sides. Any conditions that may have been effected as per a counter offer must be accepted by both parties.
2:1 Representing the undersigned agent is hereby appointed by his Royal Highness to act on behalf of no other person than the undersigned (known as the principal). The amount of authority to deal that the agent has is subject to agreement between the principal and the stated agent. However, otherwise, third parties can assume the [sic] Mr. Gold has full powers to negotiate this contract.
3:1 Collective agreement shall state all terms used for agreements made between the undersigned. This covers more than this one organisation. Although these can be seen as breach of future contracts, this contract is governed by the territorial law of rights, not contract law.
4:1 Comfort letters will not be issued. Documents issued to back up this agreement do not have any contractual standing. This is to be issued by a parent or associate company stating that the group will back up the petition of the small company to improve its trading position. This contract does state they are not intended to be legally binding [two illegible words] regarding letters of comfort.
5:1 Confidentiality within this binding [illegible word] is to protect confidential information if it has to be dictated to another party. If this is to occur during negotiations for this contract, the parties may need to divulge information about their operatives to each other. In this situation, the confidentiality agreement forms a binding contract not to pass on that information whether or not the actual contract is ever signed.
6:1 Certain Considerations [sic] within this contract pertains to each side which must give some consideration to the other. Referred to as the quid pro quo. This is the price paid. Which is not to exercise a right to access over somebody else's land in return for a payment would be a valid contract, even if there was no intention of ever [illegible word] right [illegible word].
7:1 Exclusion clause - Do note that within this contract that are [sic] intended to exclude one party from [illegible word] if stated circumstance were to occur. They are types of exemption clauses. This shall be traded through interpretation of them strictly and, where possible, in favour of the party that did not write said contract. Exemption clause may [illegible word] in the governing body by regulations that tender them ineffective but note that these regulations do not cover retractions.
- The cover illustration on the book that Will Scarlet steals from the library is a colorized version of one of John Tenniel's illustrations from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
- The same illustration is in Henry's storybook in Season One premiere "Pilot".
- The page that Will tore out ("Alice attended to all these directions, and explained, as well as she could, that she had lost her way. ‘I don’t know what you mean by your way,’ said the") is from Chapter 2 of Lewis Carroll's sequel Through the Looking-Glass. The accompanying illustration is based on Tenniel's illustration for the chapter. Interestingly, the show version kept Tenniel's black and white background, but Alice has been edited away and the Red Queen has been replaced with a similar but brand new, full color version of the character.
- When Mr. Gold transforms the hat in the backroom of his pawnshop, there is an open book lying on his desk in the bottom left corner. It appears to be the same prop that was used for Jafar's book on genies in the spin-off show Once Upon a Time in Wonderland – the top of the page features the same unique motif as the pages in Jafar's book.
- Two alchemical symbols—Grades of Fire and Fire of Circulation 1 — are printed on the page, inside the illustration of a circle.
- The rest of the symbols are characters from the reconstruction of the mysterious Emerald Tablet, one of the pillars of Western alchemy, and said to be inscribed with the secrets of the universe. One interpretation suggests that the inscription describes seven stages of alchemical transformation—calcination, dissolution, separation, conjunction, fermentation, distillation and coagulation.
- The other book on the table contains an illustration by Dionysius Andreas Freher, a German mystical writer who lived from 1649 to 1728, who is most famous for his extensive commentaries on Christian mystic Jakob Böhme. The picture was published in an eighteenth century British publication of Böhme's works: The Works of Jacob Behmen, The Teutonic Philosopher, vol. 3, from 1764.
- This episode reveals that Gold has kept Captain Hook's hand in his pawnshop. A severed hand was sitting on a shelf in the pawnshop in "The Outsider" while Mr. Gold conversed with Belle on the phone.
- A severed hand was also on a pedestal in Rumplestiltskin's castle in the Season One episode "Skin Deep". It is even mentioned in the episode script, where a "withered hand" is listed among the many objects in the Dark castle. The hand is most noticeable when Belle walks away from the cupboard after she takes out the vase.
- The hand can also be spotted in the background when Emma and Hook return to the castle in the Season Three finale "There's No Place Like Home", when Ingrid and her sisters pay a visit to Rumplestiltskin in "The Snow Queen", in Belle's dream in the Season Six premiere "The Savior" and when Rumplestiltskin shows up with Jack and Jill's infant son in the Season Six episode "Changelings".
- A severed hand can also be seen lying on a pedestal in the Underbrooke Pawnshop in the Season Five episode "Souls of the Departed" and "Firebird".
- The prop hand can be seen in close-up on a Flickr set photograph from the pawnshop set from Season Five.
- In Rumplestiltskin's castle, the runic symbols Fehu (ᚠ) and Eihwaz (ᛇ) are engraved on a hammer which resembles Thor's Mjölnir. This can also be seen in "The Snow Queen".
- Emma is wearing a Blur Leather Ria Snake Print Leather Jacket over a James Perse Lightweight Cashmere Stripe Tee (both are no longer available).
- Mary Margaret is wearing a Crocheted Hem Crop Sweater from Topshop. (no longer available).
- For her date with Hook, Emma dons a pair of Gucci Beverly Patent Leather T-Strap Pumps in Blush (no longer available). Her dress was custom made by the costume department.
- Hook's new leather jacket was custom made by the Vancouver-based company Oceandrive Leather.
- Regina is wearing a James Perse Women's Raw-Seamed Cotton Jersey Tee (no longer available).
- Belle is wearing a RED Valentino Crown Print Skirt and a pair of Jimmy Choo Sepia Kidskin-Napa Colorblock Platform Pumps in Black/Nude (both are no longer available). She wore the same shoes back in the Season Two episode "The Crocodile".
- Hook and Emma's dinner date was filmed inside the restaurant Tapenade Bistro in Steveston Village, which doubles as the town of Storybrooke on Once Upon a Time.
- According to the owner, no alterations were made to Tapenade Bistro's s interior other than changing the tablecloths.
- On Once Upon a Time, the restaurant is called Tony's. However, Tapenade Bistro is also a Storybrooke location: In the Season Two episode "Tiny", Anton gets stuck in a hole outside this restaurant. In the Season Two finale "And Straight On 'Til Morning", Greg Mendell is burning papers near the same building.
- In addition, the Underbrooke version of Tapenade Bistro appears in the Season Five episode "Sisters".
- The Apprentice's cottage also doubles as four other cottages on the show:
- It is used as one of the cottages in the village of Camelot in the Season Five episode "The Broken Kingdom". This can easily be seen from the identical architecture and window panes and the identical pattern of the brick stones (the ones around the window are easiest to compare).
- A redressed version of the cottage doubles as the exterior of Brennan's cottage in the Season Five episode "Swan Song". The wooden floor on the Apprentice's front porch has been replaced by a stone floor and climbing plants have been added to the walls to make the cottage look different.
- The same set doubles as the exterior of the Woodcutter's cottage in the Season Five episode "Sisters". Although the cottage was heavily redressed to double as the Woodcutter's home (most noticeably, the roof of his cottage has a completely different shape, and the chimney is in a different position), the door, the window panes and the pattern of the brick stones (again, the ones around the window are easiest to compare) are the same.
- The cottage was once again reused, for Fiona and Malcolm's cottage, in the Season Six episode "The Black Fairy". This can be seen from the identical pattern of the brick stones (the ones on the right hand side of the lower half of the door are easiest to compare). The Apprentice's roof tiles were replaced with a thatched roof for this episode.
|French||"L'Apprenti Sorcier"||"The Sorcerer's Apprentice"|
|German||"Der Zauberlehrling"||"The Sorcerer's Apprentice"|
|Portuguese||"O Aprendiz"||"The Apprentice"|
|Spanish||"El Aprendiz"||"The Apprentice"|