"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 title card features an enchanted broom.
- The title of this episode was announced by Adam Horowitz via his Twitter account on August 12, 2014.
- 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 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 (this ice cream shop is gone by the time of "Fall"). However, Jane Espenson has clarified that the other ice cream shop did not belong to the Snow Queen.
- The opening scene in the Enchanted Forest takes place "a long time ago", after the Enchanted Forest flashbacks with Merlin and Nimue in "Nimue", and at an unspecified time before "Desperate Souls".
- The rest of the Enchanted Forest events take place after "White Out" and before "Family Business". (For more details, see the Enchanted Forest timeline)
- The Arendelle events take place 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".
- 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 is 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.
Fairytales and Folklore
- This episode features Rumplestiltskin from the Rumplestiltskin fairy tale, Captain Hook from the Peter Pan story as well as the Snow Queen from the fairytale of the same name. It also features the Apprentice and the magical broomstick from the poem, "The Sorcerer's Apprentice".
- When Rumplestiltskin says he needs one of Anna's tears, it is a reference to the fairytale "The Snow Queen", 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.
- 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 "Nasty Habits".
- When Will tries to break into the library, and when Belle finds him the next morning, he's holding a bottle of MacCutcheon Scotch Whiskey. This is a fictional brand featured on Lost.
- 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 on [sic] 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 "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. 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 "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 "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 Savior" and when Rumplestiltskin shows up with Jack and Jill's infant son in "Changelings".
- A severed hand can also be seen lying on a pedestal in the Underbrooke Pawnshop in "Souls of the Departed" and "Firebird".
- 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 Lace Hem Crop Top 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 is 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 addition, the Underbrooke version of Tapenade Bistro appears in "Sisters".
|French||"L'Apprenti Sorcier"||"The Sorcerer's Apprentice"|
|German||"Der Zauberlehrling"||"The Sorcerer's Apprentice"|
|Portuguese||"O Aprendiz"||"The Apprentice"|