Character: Rumplestiltskin/Mr. Gold
Original Release: September 25, 2016 (US)
Running Time: 44 minutes
The sixth season premiered on September 25, 2016 and the last episode of the season aired on May 14, 2017.
The characters must defend Storybrooke from the combined threat of Mr. Hyde and an unleashed Evil Queen while the mysterious fate of saviors leads to Emma learning about the savior before her, Aladdin (Deniz Akdeniz). The ongoing war on light and darkness ultimately leads to the arrival of the creator of the Dark Curse, the Black Fairy (Jamie Murray) as well as the final battle that was prophesied before the casting of the original curse.
6x01 - "The Savior" (original airdate: September 25, 2016)
In the past, Aladdin, a "Savior", is taunted by Jafar over the inevitable downfall of all Saviors. In Storybrooke, refugees arrive from the Land of Untold Stories. Emma experiences tremors and visions; an arrested Hyde helps her receive an oracle's vision of a hooded figure killing her.
Guided by Morpheus, Gold enters Belle's dreams to lift the sleeping curse; he tries to renew their love, but she rejects him. "Morpheus" reveals he is really their unborn son, and desired this outcome. Belle wakes and leaves Gold. Henry convinces Regina that Hades may have lied about Robin Hood's soul having been destroyed. Zelena moves in with Regina but, after learning her sister blames her for Robin Hood's death, moves out and is approached by the Evil Queen.
6x02 - "A Bitter Draught" (original airdate: October 2, 2016)
In the past in the Enchanted Forest, the Evil Queen offers to aid the revenge plot of Edmond Dantes, The Count of Monte Cristo, if he kills Snow and David. When he falls in love with Snow's handmaiden, he reneges and flees with her to the Land of Untold Stories to save her from poison. In Storybrooke, the Evil Queen recruits Zelena and uses Edmond's heart to set him against Snow and David; Regina kills Edmond to save the others, and realizes she retains the capacity for darkness.
The Evil Queen declares that the undesirable "untold stories" will be played out. She gives David evidence that his father's death was not accidental. Belle lives on Hook's ship; in a deal with Gold, the Evil Queen will not harm her or the baby. Emma tells Archie about her visions and notes that Regina isn't present in them and could be the hooded figure.
6x03 - "The Other Shoe" (original airdate: October 9, 2016)
In the past in the Enchanted Forest, Cinderella meets Prince Thomas at the ball, but flees when she believes he loves her stepsister Clorinda; Clorinda actually plans to elope with Thomas' footman, Jacob, but her mother, Lady Tremaine, abducts her to the Land of Untold Stories after forcing Cinderella to betray Clorinda's location. In Storybrooke, Ashley hopes to reconcile with Clorinda.
Aided by the Evil Queen, Tremaine lures Ashley into a trap for her and Jacob. Ashley protects Jacob; Clorinda reunites with him and forgives Cinderella, while Tremaine is arrested. Emma struggles to control her magic. Whale helps Jekyll recreate his serum, while the Evil Queen and Hyde form an alliance and she releases him. Snow White wants normality, but David secretly investigates his father's death; Gold provides information in exchange for David delivering a message to Belle.
6x04 - "Strange Case" (original airdate: October 16, 2016)
In the past in Victorian England, Jekyll petitions the Academy of Science for membership but Dr. Lydgate rejects him. Rumplestiltskin arrives and magically perfects Jekyll's serum; Jekyll transforms into Hyde, who blackmails Lydgate for Jekyll's membership. Mary is Lydgate's daughter and Jekyll's unrequited love; she and Hyde fall in love. Jekyll accidentally fatally defenestrates Mary; he frames Hyde.
In Storybrooke, Gold imprisons Belle on the ship to protect her from Hyde; but it is Jekyll who tries to kill Belle in revenge for Rumplestiltskin's role in Mary's death. Hook saves Belle by killing Jekyll, and Hyde dies of identical wounds; Regina asks Emma to kill her if necessary to stop the Evil Queen. Gold warns Belle that their child will need his protection. Mary Margaret resumes teaching, and her assistant Shirin inspires her to draw on her life as Snow. Shirin is secretly Princess Jasmine, working with the Oracle to search for Aladdin.
6x05 - "Street Rats" (original airdate: October 23, 2016) NO ROBERT
In the past in Agrabah, Aladdin seeks a magical weapon for Jasmine, to save the kingdom from Jafar; he is the weapon and a Savior. Jafar tempts Aladdin with magical shears that can sever him from his fate as the Savior and from his resulting death. Aladdin rejects Jafar and saves Jasmine. In Storybrooke, the Oracle is murdered.
Emma helps Jasmine, hoping Aladdin's survival ensures her own. Having faked his death, Aladdin reveals himself to Emma and confesses that he doomed Agrabah by using the shears, which he gives to her; she asks Hook to dispose of them, but he secretly keeps them. The Evil Queen impersonates Archie to learn of Emma's visions, and convinces Zelena to turn Archie back into a cricket.
6x06 - "Dark Waters" (original airdate: October 30, 2016)
During the Dark Curse, Captain Nemo abducts Hook and invites him to join the crew "family" of his submarine, Nautilus, in their quest for the "Mysterious Island", which is the Land of Untold Stories. Hook discovers the first mate is his half-brother, Liam, and decides to leave to avoid confrontation; but Liam attacks him, instead mortally wounding Nemo, who steps in. In the present, Archie is freed.
Henry confronts Hook over lying about the shears, and Liam imprisons them on Nautilus. Hook opens up and Henry accepts him as family; they save each other and dispose of the shears. Modern medicine saves Nemo; he, Liam, and Hook make amends. Emma and Aladdin discuss being a Savior. Jasmine reveals that Agrabah vanished. Snow supports Belle at her ultrasound. The Evil Queen seduces Gold and offers the retrieved shears in exchange for help taking Snow's heart.
6x07 - "Heartless" (original airdate: November 6, 2016)
In the past, fugitive Snow and shepherd David separately travel to Longbourn; she to flee the kingdom and he to sell his struggling farm. Without ever seeing each other's faces, David saves Snow from a bounty hunter and she repays him with money to save the farm, deciding not to flee. Their hands touch and a magical sapling is created. In the present, the Evil Queen threatens to destroy Storybrooke with River of Lost Souls water unless Mary Margaret and David hand over their hearts. They learn the sapling could stop the Queen, who destroys it just after they find it. But it has shown them their previous meeting, and they conclude that their love can endure anything; they surrender themselves. The Queen casts a sleeping curse on their hearts; because they share Snow's heart, the curse affects them both; each can wake the other but immediately succumbs to the curse, so they can never be awake together. Regina uses Gold's relationship with the Queen to separate the latter from Zelena, who earns Gold's enmity by exposing his schemes to Belle.
6x08 - "I'll Be Your Mirror" (original airdate: November 13, 2016)
Regina and Emma try to magically trap the Evil Queen in the World Behind the Mirror, but she traps them there, where the Dragon is already imprisoned. Henry prepares for a date with Violet; the Queen impersonates Regina and tries to manipulate him but he recognizes her. Emma and Regina discover Sidney was building a mirror portal out of the world and try and finish it, but the Evil Queen forces the Dragon to attack Emma and Regina, using his heart, and tries to make Henry kill the Dragon with the Hammer of Hephaestus; he instead uses it to free his mothers. Mary Margaret and David adjust to living in shifts. Belle asks Zelena to help her escape Storybrooke via magical portal, and they form an alliance with Aladdin and Jasmine. Aladdin steals the Genie's lamp and the Sorcerer's wand from Gold's shop, but Gold takes the wand back from Zelena and puts a magical tracking device on Belle. He asks the Queen to kill Zelena, as the connection between his and Zelena's hearts protects her from him.
6x09 - "Changelings" (original airdate: November 27, 2016)
In the Enchanted Forest, while served by Belle, Rumplestiltskin abducts a baby to use as bait for the Black Fairy, the mother who abandoned him; she escapes without answering his questions. In the present, Belle receives advice from her unborn child while Gold becomes increasingly unhinged. Resenting Gold's order to attack Zelena, the Evil Queen accelerates Belle's pregnancy; Mother Superior delivers Belle's son, Gideon, and sends him into hiding; Gold vows to find him. As the Genie has been freed, Aladdin takes his place. Zelena and Regina continue to feud. Emma obtains the sword from her vision.
6x10 - "Wish You Were Here" (original airdate: December 4, 2016)
The Black Fairy abducts Gideon. Emma discovers the sword can kill the Evil Queen without hurting Regina. The Queen steals the lamp and wishes Emma to an alternate reality where she was never the Savior; Regina follows her. David and his allies take the lamp from the Queen, who is turned into a serpent by the hooded figure, revealed to be the adult Gideon. Jasmine wishes herself and Aladdin to Agrabah. In the "wish realm", Emma lives as a princess until Regina traumatically restores her memory. Regina frees Rumplestiltskin in exchange for a magic bean, but the portal to Storybrooke closes while Regina is distracted by the appearance of Robin Hood.
6x11 - "Tougher Than the Rest" (original airdate: March 5, 2017)
In 1990 Minnesota, a young Emma is told by a teenager that she has the power to change her fate. In present day, after they miss their way out of the Wish realm, Emma and Regina find another option for escape when they come across August, who agrees to help create a new portal. Regina goes to find Robin Hood to see if he would've been better off without her. After Regina finds Robin, they're caught by the Sheriff of Nottingham and later by the Wish realm Rumple.
Robin believes Regina when she tells him about their being in an alternate reality. Emma discovers that August was the teenager she met back in Minnesota and inspires him to complete the portal. Emma, Regina, and Robin return to Storybrooke, where Gideon explains to Gold and Belle his intention to kill Emma so that he can acquire her savior powers and kill the Black Fairy, a move that has David furious and Belle concerned. Emma and Gideon finally meet for the battle, but Emma survives, choosing her own fate. Gideon retreats, proclaiming this far from over. Gold and Belle decide to work together for the good of their son.
6x12 - "Murder Most Foul" (original airdate: March 12, 2017)
The events of how Robert, the father of David and James, was murdered are detailed in a flashback, in which Robert learns what happened to James after he ran away from King George. With help from Rumple, he tracks him to Pleasure Island, but their reunion is cut short by King George, who orders Robert's execution. His death affects David in the present day after he sees visions of Robert and asks Hook to help him, despite his being reformed. When Hook becomes concerned that David is taking this investigation too far by going after Albert, he intervenes and brings David back to sanity.
Hook is also worried about whether David will give him his blessing to marry Emma, but David does. Meanwhile, Regina tries to get the Wish Realm Robin assimilated into Storybrooke, but soon questions why he agreed to follow her, as it turns out that he had something else planned after he steals a chest from the vault. The truth as to who really murdered Robert is revealed when August gives Hook missing pages he took from Henry's book. When Hook sees an illustration of David's dad, he recognizes him and recalls murdering him during a robbery in the Enchanted Forest so that there was no witness to his crime.
6x13 - "Ill-Boding Patterns" (original airdate: March 19, 2017)
During the First Ogres War, Beowulf leads a fearsome charge on the battlefield in the Enchanted Forest of old. After every last soldier had been slain, Beowulf surrenders to death just as Rumplestiltskin intervenes, killing all the ogres. Hailed as a hero in the village, Beowulf is irked by Rumple's new title. He creates a ruse to lead Rumple to his demise. Fearing he would not be able to follow through on protecting the villagers without Dark Magic, Rumple bestows his dagger upon Baelfire as an insurance policy. Following a turbulent exchange and threat to frame Rumplestiltskin as a murderer, Beowulf retreats. Feeling the pressure of his threat, Bae commands his father to kill him.
Rumple later doses Bae with a memory potion to erase the ordeal from his mind and restore his innocence. In Storybrooke, Rumple recognizes a familiar pattern in Gideon, who makes strides in his quest to kill Emma Swan at the cost of The Blue Fairy's vitality. Hook worries about the repercussions of telling Emma his newly unveiled secret. Meanwhile, Emma unknowingly forces a proposal after happening upon Hook's engagement ring. Robin of Locksley attempts to flee the town, but to no avail. The Evil Queen escapes her reptilian confinement and indoctrinates Robin.
6x14 - "Page 23" (original airdate: March 26, 2017) NO ROBERT
In the Enchanted Forest, The Evil Queen is in search of a spell that will help her end Snow White for good, but her father has love in mind for his daughter and leads her on a quest to Cupid's Arrow. However, The Evil Queen rebrands the arrow to follow hatred and discovers that the person she despises the most is herself. In Storybrooke, The Evil Queen and Regina face off in a final confrontation.
Just when Regina wins the upper hand, she remembers the Evil Queen's self-loating and evenly splits the light and the darkness in their hearts, to share their love and hate and allow the Evil Queen to reform. After Emma calls off the engagement, Hook decides to board the Nautilus with Captain Nemo. Hook later changes his mind following a conversation with Snow but, before he can return, Gideon hijacks the vessel and sends it out of Storybrooke.
6x15 - "A Wondrous Place" (original airdate: April 2, 2017) NO ROBERT
At a loss for hope, Regina suggests a "girls' night out" for Emma with her and Snow. While at the bar, she confides in the mixologist and sheds a tear. Meanwhile, the Nautilus is transported to the Enchanted Forest, where Aladdin and Jasmine board. They have yet to locate Agrabah and are growing weary. After Hook and Jasmine confide in one another, the vessel is irrevocably damaged and Jasmine uses a genie wish to relocate the group to the island where Jafar is located. They discover a cabana belonging to Ariel and Prince Eric. Ariel has collected a genie lamp that houses Jafar.
Jasmine is able to sway him into divulging the location of the hidden Agrabah before defeating him with magic dust. Through true love's kiss, Aladdin and Jasmine, along with Hook and Ariel, are transported to the restored city and Aladdin's genie curse is broken. Ariel supplies Hook with a means to reach Emma. Emma receives the message and Gideon, no longer masquerading as the mixologist, threatens that he will use her tears to keep Hook from returning to Storybrooke unless she helps him kill the Black Fairy. Flashbacks to Ariel and Jasmine's first meeting show the princess falter under Jafar's trickery.
6x16 - "Mother's Little Helper" (original airdate: April 9, 2017)
In Storybrooke, Gold reveals to Emma and Snow that the Black Fairy is his mother and that the Dark Curse Regina cast was created by the Black Fairy. Emma agrees to help Gideon kill the Black Fairy, but is double-crossed by Gideon and left to die at the hands of a giant spider. Gideon opens a portal with the sword, allowing the Black Fairy to slip through into Storybrooke. Meanwhile in the Enchanted Forest, Hook wagers the Jolly Roger for a magic bean in a game of cards with Blackbeard.
As Blackbeard and Hook go through the portal, it malfunctions thanks to Gideon and the duo ends up in Neverland, on the run from the remnants of Peter Pan's Lost Boys. Back in Storybrooke, Henry experiences a disorienting shift in his Author powers, so he and Regina seek help from the only person who can aid them: the previous Author, Isaac. Isaac reveals to Regina and Henry that they are nearing the end of the story in which the savior must fight the Final Battle. Flashbacks reveal the abuses the Black Fairy inflicted on Gideon and that the Black Fairy ripped out Gideon's heart and is controlling him to kill Emma.
6x17 - "Awake" (original airdate: April 16, 2017)
Regina works feverishly to wake Snow and Charming from the Sleeping Curse. Gold comes face to face with the Black Fairy, the powerful enemy Emma must fight in the Final Battle. Hook, still in Neverland, meets up with Tiger Lily, who gives him a piece of an ancient fairy wand to aid Emma in defeating the Black Fairy. Gold confronts the Black Fairy over her manipulating Gideon with his heart and she maintains that Storybrooke would be destroyed if the two of them fought.
A pixie flower allows Emma to open a doorway to Neverland and rescue Hook, who then re-proposes properly. The townsfolk gather around Emma's sleeping parents and each take small amounts of the Sleeping Curse unto themselves, diluting it and allowing Snow and David to finally reunite. In 1993, a pixie flower awakens Snow and Charming from their cursed selves, but an awakened Rumplestiltskin tells them they must make a difficult decision to ensure that Emma fulfills her destiny as the Savior.
6x18 - "Where Bluebirds Fly" (original airdate: April 23, 2017)
In Zelena's past, her childhood friend Stanum asks for her help in finding the Crimson Heart, a magical artifact that would be able to restore his human form after having been cursed by the Wicked Witch of the North to slowly turn into tin. Zelena's refusal to give up her magic leads to her betraying Stanum, as she keeps the Heart and leaves him to become the Tin Man. In the Present, The Black Fairy tempts Zelena with an offer to join her, only to have Zelena oppose her instead.
Regina is brought into the chaos by trying to stop her sister and they find the Black Fairy and Gideon in the crystal mines, with the Black Fairy tricking Zelena into utilizing her unstable Dark Magic to strengthen her for the Final Battle. Realizing that there is nothing left for her back in Oz, Zelena decides to help the residents fight back against the Black Fairy by using the Crimson Heart to give up her magic, thereby undoing the mess she made in the mines. Emma then uses her magic and one of the crystals to bring Mother Superior out of her coma with some help from Regina and Zelena.
6x19 - "The Black Fairy" (original airdate: April 30, 2017)
The origin of Rumplestiltskin's true destiny is revealed, as his mother Fiona learns from the Blue Fairy and Tiger Lily that he was destined to become The Savior. When Fiona fears for her son and chooses power over protecting Rumple, it results in her becoming the Black Fairy, and the Blue Fairy banishing her to the Dark Realm. In the Present, as everyone looks for the missing wand, Gold brings Gideon and Emma into the Dream World to search for Gideon's heart, where the events of the flashbacks unfold.
Gold then confronts Fiona, but she reveals the real reason behind why he was abandoned. Gold later retrieves Gideon's heart and tells everyone that the Black Fairy is dead, paving the way for Emma and Hook's wedding. However, Gold and Fiona make a deal that will see the Final Battle go forward, with Emma being the Savior that will fight in it. Meanwhile, Regina helps Zelena adjust to life without her powers.
6x20 - "The Song in Your Heart" (original airdate: May 7, 2017)
In the past, Snow makes a wish that grants the entire Enchanted Forest the ability to use the gift of song as a strength, which also spreads to Oz as well. When Regina becomes affected by the wish, she finds a way to end it before the first curse takes place, but the Blue Fairy, who granted Snow the wish, tells Snow and David that the wish will be part of Emma's destiny. In Emma's past, her chance to make use of her talent is held back by being told she'll be alone.
This would come back to taunt Emma in the present day, as Fiona returns to use that weakness to take Emma's heart before unleashing a new curse on her wedding day, with help from Gold by freezing her family. When Henry discovers the page in the book that reveals the song in Emma's heart will make her stronger, not only does it embolden Emma, it stops Fiona from crushing her heart, but Fiona still tells Emma that the battle will continue. On her wedding day, Emma and Hook finally marry, just in time for the dark clouds of the Black Fairy's curse to erupt from the clock tower and engulf them at 6:00 PM, setting up the final battle.
6x21 & 6x22 - "The Final Battle - Part 1 & 2" (original airdate: May 14, 2017)
Fiona's curse alters Storybrooke, institutionalizing Emma and leaving only Henry and Gold "awake," while sending Emma's other allies to their home realms. The Final Battle begins over Emma's belief; if she stops believing in the realms of story, they will be consumed by the Darkness and cease to exist. If all the realms are destroyed, Fiona would gain unchecked powers and be able to break the Laws of Magic at will. In the Enchanted Forest, the banished characters gather at Regina's castle; David and Hook obtain a magic bean and the Evil Queen sacrifices herself, holding off the Darkness to delay the group's destruction. Fiona convinces Emma to destroy the book, but Henry hand-draws one that restores her belief in time to save everyone in the castle.
Gold kills Fiona, who had hidden Belle and turned her into a coward; this breaks the Curse, which restores everyone's memories and reunites them in Storybrooke. However, Gideon is still under orders to kill Emma. Gold attempts to free Gideon's heart; however, a spell cast by the Black Fairy prevents him from doing so. Emma lays down her sword, allowing Gideon to impale her; this releases Emma's light magic and ends the battle. With both Gold and Emma having chosen good, Gideon is returned to infancy and the realms are restored, and those who died in the crisis are revived. The characters embark on their "happy beginnings." Many years later in the New Enchanted Forest, an adult Henry vanishes while defending his daughter Lucy from an unidentified entity. Guided by Tiger Lily, Lucy travels to Seattle, where Henry no longer remembers her.