ABC’s Once Upon a Time season six episode three found much of the story centering around Cinderella, one stepsister, and her evil stepmother. It also delivered one of the most romantic kisses in the series’ history, but viewers had to wait until the end of the episode to see a fan favorite couple experiencing one of their happiest moments. Airing on October 9, 2016, the episode titled ‘The Other Shoe’ also revealed Hook to be an unexpectedly fun babysitter.
Snow (Ginnifer Goodwin) and David (Josh Dallas) accompany Regina (Lana Parrilla) to visit Hyde (Sam Witwer), with Regina bringing lasagna. They enter his cell and he’s already feasting on a gourmet dinner courtesy of the Evil Queen. If Regina lets him loose, he’ll give her the information. Otherwise it’s a no-go.
Henry (Jared Gilmore), Hook (Colin O’Donoghue), and Emma (Jennifer Morrison) go over Henry’s list of all the Storybrooke newcomers. They’re trying to figure out who might still be missing in the woods. Ashley (Jessy Schram) and Thomas (Tim Phillipps) show up with their young daughter, Alexandra, and Ashley wants to offer the newbies free babysitting. She needs the list to figure out who has kids. Hook proves he’s an adorable babysitter by putting whipped cream on his nose and making funny noises. (How sweet!) Emma smiles from the counter, watching Hook entertain Ashley’s child, while Ashley wants to know the scoop on his relationship with Emma. Will they have a fairy tale ending? He says they’re taking it slow and he’s still sleeping on a cot in a pirate ship by a pregnant lady who snores.
Flashback to Ashley/Ella sweeping up the courtyard when the Prince’s footman, Jacob (Max Lloyd-Jones), arrives with an invitation to the Royal Ball. Ashley’s wicked stepmom and stepsisters push her out of the way, insulting the footman as they drool over the invitation.
Inside the estate, Ella asks if she can go but they just laugh at her. She even shows them a gorgeous pink dress that was her mother’s which her stepmom promptly gives to her daughter to toss in the fire. Ashley retrieves it but it’s ruined. They laugh at poor Ella who has cinders on her… Get it? Cinderella. They leave her crying over the dress and who should appear but her mouse friend, Gus. A key falls from the dress and she remembers her mom telling her a story about a magic key just like that one that could take you to the Land of Untold Stories. She locks the key away, not believing in magic.
Emma visits Archie (Raphael Sbarge) and confesses she’s jealous of Ashley and her perfect family. She’s upset her magic is failing and she’s still having visions. She says she deserves a future which she can’t give to Hook, and she’s sad she doesn’t get her happy ending. Archie tells her it’s not about the ending but about how she lives her life.
Thomas tells Emma Ashley’s taken off and left a note saying she has to find Clorinda (Mekenna Melvin), her stepsister. Ashley took Thomas’ rifle and he thinks she might be going to kill Clorinda. Emma uses Cinderella’s shoe (not a glass slipper but a tennis shoe) to locate her.
Jekyll (Hank Harris) is working on a way to tell if the Evil Queen is still alive and how to destroy her. Regina, Snow, and David are helping him, but it’s no use. Regina’s tired of being one step behind the Evil Queen and Snow suggests she try to think like her. Regina figures out she needs to talk to Zelena. She leaves, and Snow’s worried their life is just “defeat and repeat.” David says it will be normal some day, and Snow says she wants to teach again and David is totally supportive. Then she looks down at Jekyll’s table of beakers and chemicals and thinks she knows how to help him.
Hook and Henry are practicing sword fighting with sticks and having a good time doing it. Emma walks up and Henry wants to come with them to find Ashley. Off they go, following the flying shoe.
Gus (the man, not the mouse) accompanies Cinderella to the ball, saying whatever she owes Rumpelstiltskin is worth it. She looks gorgeous and bumps, literally, into Snow White. They exchange compliments and Prince Thomas looks on, smiling from a distance. Cinderella and Prince Thomas flirt and then dance, and he asks her name but she doesn’t tell him. He calls her “The Girl with the Glass Slippers.” They’re having a wonderful time but he has to leave for a quick piece of business. After he walks, Cinderella spots him giving her stepsister a rose. Her stepmother approaches, telling her Thomas and Clorinda are laughing at her and that she’s just a big joke. Cinderella runs out of the ball, leaving her shoe behind.
Back in Storybrooke, David asks Gold (Robert Carlyle) where he got the coin the Evil Queen gave him. He wants to know if his father’s death was really an accident, and Gold checks out the inventory record. David tells him to name his price and Gold asks how badly he wants the deal.
Flashback to Cinderella and she’s holding onto her one remaining gold slipper. Gus, the mouse, reminds her about the magic key and Cinderella uses it to open a wardrobe cabinet. A portal is exposed and Clorinda stops her from leaving, telling her the Prince loves her. Cinderella thinks she’s being made fun of again, but Clorinda says the rose was actually from the Prince’s footman. They’re in love and getting married. Cinderella can’t believe it and Clorinda says she was only cruel to him when he came by the house because her mother wouldn’t allow the relationship. She apologizes for everything and says she’s off to meet her love and then they’ll leave and start their life together.
Back in Storybrooke, Emma, Hook, and David find Ashley and she definitely has Thomas’ rifle. Ashley says she’s not trying to hurt Clorinda, she’s trying to help her. She says Clorinda was never wicked, she was. Emma tells her she can change and fix it, and Ashley says she has to do it for herself, asking if Emma knows what it feels like when all of your happiness is a lie. Emma’s hand starts shaking and she says she does know that feeling. Ashley runs away and Emma’s magic won’t work to stop her. Hook pulls her in and hugs her.
Regina visits Zelena (Rebecca Mader) and sees the rattle and realizes the Evil Queen was there. Regina wants Zelena to give it back, telling Zelena she’s just trying to help her.
The Evil Queen asks Emma if she’s having trouble with her magic and Henry tells her to go away. She doesn’t, saying she raised him and she’s as much his mother as Regina is. Emma pulls Henry away and the Evil Queen says Regina didn’t have her happy ending because she wasn’t strong enough to let her story run its course. The Evil Queen claims to be strong enough to see it through, but gives Emma a heads up Cinderella’s story won’t end well. The Evil Queen wants to hurt Emma and that’s why she won’t let Cinderella have a happy ending. She’ll make all the happy endings turn to dust. She uses her magic to send Emma, Henry, and Hook away.
Belle’s reading a book about pregnancies when David shows up to give her a cassette tape from Gold. David delivered it as part of the deal he struck to get info on his dad, and Belle (Emilie de Ravin) takes it to help him out so he can say he fulfilled his part of the bargain.
Emma wonders if because Ashley was her first save, that means everything she did after that can be undone. Hook and Henry tell her to imagine she’s back working as a bail bondswoman since she doesn’t have magic. Together they figure out Ashley’s trying to find Clorinda and they use the book to find out what happened to her.
Another flashback shows the evil stepmother knows Clorinda is gone. Cinderella says the Prince is looking for her and he wants to marry her. The evil stepmom insults her, saying she looks like a trash bin. She finds the glass slipper and holds it hostage until Cinderella says where Clorinda went. She then shatters the shoe which was Cinderella’s only proof she’s the woman the Prince is looking for.
In Storybrooke, Ashley finds Clorinda and she’s been hurt. She promises to fix their story but it’s a trick and her leg isn’t really injured. The evil stepmother makes herself known, picking up the rifle and aiming it at Ashley.
Flashback again, and this time Cinderella’s locked in her house. The Prince and Snow White ring the bell and Snow knows Cinderella’s inside even if she doesn’t answer. Just then Gus makes his way outside and into the carriage with the key to the house. Inside, Cinderella’s cleaning up and she apologizes because she’s no one. The Prince asks her name and she tells him it’s Ella. The Prince gets on his knee and proposes, calling her Princess Ella. He slips a ring on her finger and they kiss! Snow looks on, smiling. Ella thanks Snow and then Thomas promises her new shoes, but she says there’s something she needs to fix first.
Clorinda tells Jacob about the special key, explaining where they’d end up if they used it. They agree to go and just then the evil stepmother comes and knocks Jacob out. Cinderella stops her stepmom and she shows them Thomas’ ring, saying she’s engaged. The evil stepmom is pissed and she takes the key, opening the portal and grabbing Clorinda before stepping through.
In Storybrooke, Ashley tries to explain she was just trying to help Clorinda and Jacob get their happy ending and that maybe that can happen in Storybrooke. Clorinda didn’t know Jacob was in Storybrooke, and Ashley tells her they’re actually standing in the barn at his farm. Evil stepmom appears with Jacob who she’s tied up and Clorinda is incredibly happy to see him. Stepmom explains the Evil Queen is helping her find the “missing pieces” of her betrayal. She’s about to shoot Jacob and instead aims at Ashley when she steps in front of the gun. Stepmom puts down the gun, opting to stab Ashley through the stomach. Emma, Hook, and Henry arrive right after Ashley’s been stabbed, but Emma’s magic isn’t working so she can’t heal her. Henry tells Emma she can do it and it works! Ashley’s healed and she apologizes to Clorinda who accepts. Emma and Hook hug and he says, “You did it, Swan.”
Regina, Snow, and Jekyll head to a garage that has a complete lab set up. And who does it belong to? Dr. Whale (David Anders), of course. He says they can help themselves to anything but what’s in the frig (warning them it’s not food). He introduces himself to Dr. Jekyll as Dr. Frankenstein. Jekyll’s impressed and Snow and Regina laugh over the Dr. Jekyll and Dr. Frankenstein tag-team. Then Snow gets the idea that these two could be really first-rate high school science teachers. Regina looks at her like she’s lost her mind.
Emma finally asks Hook to move in with her. She knows everything in life is uncertain, but says she can make some space in her closet full of red jackets for some black leather. Hook has a huge smile as he says he’d love to move in. They kiss, a long, lingering romantic kiss that ends with them touching noses.
David is still up late at night and he’s looking over the inventory note from Gold that indicates his dad wasn’t killed in the accident. He was actually stabbed and that means his killer could still be out there. Snow tries to convince him to leave it alone and not to seek vengeance. She reminds him they have a town, their daughter, and a son who really needs him. “It may not be epic but it is the most important thing we will ever do and it won’t happen if you’re off seeking revenge for some decades-old crime.” David answers by saying, “Being there for you…how could that not be epic?” He decides to burn the note but after Snow leaves the room he changes his mind.
Meanwhile Belle listens to the tape which is a good night poem from Gold.
The Evil Queen visits Hyde and she’s mad the savior won again. She still needs his help and he can’t do it from inside the cell. She gets rid of his handcuffs and opens his cell door.