Once Upon a Time (2011–2018)
1 user 6 critic

The Outsider 

Gold's plans to cross the town line to find his son without losing his memories are thwarted by Hook, forcing Belle to intervene, as flashbacks show her befriend Mulan on a quest to destroy a beast.


David Solomon


Edward Kitsis (created by), Adam Horowitz (created by) | 2 more credits »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Ginnifer Goodwin ... Mary Margaret Blanchard
Jennifer Morrison ... Emma Swan
Lana Parrilla ... Evil Queen
Josh Dallas ... David Nolan
Emilie de Ravin ... Belle French / Belle
Jared Gilmore ... Henry Mills (as Jared S. Gilmore)
Meghan Ory ... Ruby Lucas
Robert Carlyle ... Mr. Gold
Tony Amendola ... Marco
Lee Arenberg ... Leroy / Dreamy
Jamie Chung ... Mulan
Beverley Elliott ... Granny Lucas
Chris Gauthier ... William Smee
Julian Morris ... Prince Phillip
Colin O'Donoghue ... Captain Killian 'Hook' Jones


Mr. Gold finds a way to cross the town boundary without losing his memory but his efforts are ruined by Hook, forcing Belle to try and save his plans. Back in the fairy tale land, Belle seeks adventure by trying to destroy a monster that plagues the town. Along the way, she meets and befriends Mulan. Written by Nadia Nassar

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

13 January 2013 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The object/animal/person in this episode is the Yaoguai. See more »


The PA plates on the car at the end of the episode are on both the front and rear of the vehicle. Pennsylvania license plates normally are only mounted on the rear of cars. See more »


Prince Phillip: Maleficent. An evil sorceress from my kingdom determined to do everything in her power to keep me apart from Aurora, my true love. So she exiled me to this land and turned me into a monster. I tried to warn the villagers, but no one understood what I really was. Except you.
Belle: Well, you're not the first beast I've faced.
See more »


References The Shawshank Redemption (1994) See more »

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User Reviews

Don't give up on this episode
26 January 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

When 'Once Upon a Time' first started it was highly addictive and made the most of a truly great and creative premise. Really loved the idea of turning familiar fairy tales on their heads and putting own interpretations on them and the show early on clearly had clearly had a ball. Watched it without fail every time it came on and it was often a highlight of the week. Which was why it was sad when it ran out of ideas and lost its magic in the later seasons.

The previous two episodes "Queen of Hearts" and "The Cricket Game" saw a return to form for Season 2 and 'Once Upon a Time' after a three episode dip (all three decent episodes still but Season 2 showed several times it could do much more than just decent). Both of them took major strides in the right direction in terms of plot advancement and characterisation, expanding on what is already known and introducing new ideas while not having any contradictory elements.

Major strides in the right direction that is continued with "The Outsider", which sees the imaginative parallel of real life and fantasy flashback but also saw the story and relationships being propelled and characters finally coming into their own. It has its silly moments, something the previous two episodes avoided, but the heart and tension is there.

A lot of credit is due putting Belle in the spotlight and finally making her interesting, something that was long overdue. Emilie De Ravin shows more personality and emotion here, now that she now has more to work with.

Her chemistry with Robert Carlyle's Rumplestiltskin (showing once again a more sympathetic side than the standard villain) is heartfelt and poignant, that with Jamie Chung's feisty Mulan is fun and that with Colin O'Donoghue's sinister Hook has tension. Other characters play just as crucial a role, few are wasted apart from Julian Morris' Prince Phillip having relatively little to work with, but it's these characters that are spotlighted.

Visually, "The Outsider" is a very handsomely mounted episode, the settings and costumes are both colourful and atmospheric, not too dark or garish and never cookie-cutter. It is photographed beautifully too. The effects are not as sloppy here. The music is haunting, ethereal and cleverly used with a memorable main theme.

Humour, mysterious intrigue, charm and pathos are beautifully balanced, the corn and unintentional humour seen in the three episode dip between "The Doctor" and "Queen of Hearts" are not just toned down or minimalized, they are also not obvious. Regina/Evil Queen has the best lines that add a lot to her character. The story, in the Storybrooke and fantasy flashbacks, is compelling and paced solidly without trying to do too much.

Performances are all strong, with De Ravin, Carlyle, Chung and O'Donoghue giving the best performances.

Overall, a great episode that shouldn't be given up on. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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