Prince Charming is running around fantasy land, looking for Snow. Where is Snow? How can I be with Snow? But instead of finding Snow, he finds Rumpelstiltskin (or Rumpel finds him). Rumpel promises to help Charming find Snow, but only after he completes this one convenient plot point. See, Rumps has known what the Evil Queen was up to all along
I was pleasantly surprised that the writers (showrunners Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz) chose to have Emma realize the truth so early on in the episode -- we may say it was long overdue, but that jolt certainly gave the episode a shot of adrenaline that powered it all the way through to the final moments without ever stopping for breath. It was deeply satisfying to see Regina, Rumple and Emma finally operating on a (mostly) level playing field, with Emma finally feeling righteous enough to truly take Regina on. Obviously, that equality won't last for long, since Rumple once again stacked the odds in his (and, inadvertently, Regina's) favor again by managing to bring magic into our world at the episode's climax.
For once upon a time boxset season 1, as executive producers Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz promised, "A Land Without Magic" was a total game-changer -- and Once will be an even stronger show next season, thanks to its revelations.
Baelfire is still missing and August's identity is still a mystery, although I'm more convinced than ever that the clues are pointing us towards Pinocchio. These range from the overt (His previous interactions with Ruby and Emma, relating to whether or not he's a liar -- and this episode offered us definitive proof that he is.
I'd love it if the show somehow managed to lure Sebastian Stan back to be a regular next year, too; Jefferson is such a compelling and dark-edged character, and I'm wholly invested in seeing him reunite with his daughter.