Once Upon A Time Presents: Beauty and the Baby-Snatcher

In Once Upon A Time's episode "The Changelings," we met Rumplestiltskin's (Robert Carlyle) mom, and would you believe she abandoned him? Talk about an out-of-left-field, never-seen-before twist! Where do these writers come up with these unprecedented turns of plot, each more original than the last?!

I'm being disgustingly snarky of course, because as you obviously know this whole series is about parental abandonment and literally every character has been abandoned by their parents or seen them die tragically right before their eyes. I used to think someone up top in this show's producing roster was working through some family issues but it's pretty clear this is just the writing room's favorite shortcut to make us care about whatever new character they've wrangled into a Halloween costume this week.

Yes, it turns out Rumple's mom is the Black Fairy, a character we just heard about this episode, and that is why he hates fairies so much, a characteristic we just heard about this episode, when he chased down and aged up a fairy.

And that is also why he stole a baby in the flashback segment of this episode, to lure his mom down for a chill talk about how she abandoned him as a baby without even giving him a name.

Except I'm pretty sure Rumple was stealing babies here there and everywhere in the previous five seasons? What exactly has he been doing with all those babies? Are we supposed to believe he has just stolen them to lure his fairy mom into brief awkward tête-à-tête? Also, why were we ever OK with him stealing those babies? And why was Belle (Emilie de Ravin) OK with him stealing those babies?

The whole point of the much-beloved story of Beauty and the Beast (soon to be made manifest in live-action flesh starring Emma Watson as Belle!) was that, even though the Beast looked fearsome and off-putting, he was kind, courtly, and noble. He was handsome on the inside.

But when OUAT reimagines Rumple as Beast in flashback episodes, he is cruel and vaguely sadistic to Belle. Having her fall in love with a Beast who is ugly on the outside and on the inside kind of misses the point of the story. It's less about loving someone authentically and more about, well, Stockholm syndrome. (Could Belle's 36-year-old Dream Son explain this to her?)


OUAT has backpedaled hard on Rumple's redemption arc. Not only has he been basically abusive to Belle this entire season, he's made the Evil Queen his side piece and then tried to bully her into killing her own sister (something the Forever Alone Evil Queen actually tried to pull off, but she was thwarted by Nice Regina and her Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band Jacket).


When Rumple dumped the Evil Queen she hit back, hard, putting the aging potion in Belle's tea so that her pregnancy came to turn in 9 seconds instead of 9 months. Seems like a pretty sweet deal, to be honest, but it was a real dealbreaker for Belle. And she had told Rumple specifically that if he tried this crapola on her, she was going to leave him like, FOR REAL this time.


Terrified that Rumple would steal her baby and use the shears to cut him off from his fate, Belle decided the only option was to send her minutes-old newborn off with the worst character in the entire series indefinitely.

Rumple's wholehearted dismay at this escalation reminded me of redemption Rumple and you know what? I really miss that guy. I also miss Reassuring Redemption Belle, who believed in Rumple and loyally defended him through thick and thin. I am not sure how things got so far off the track at this point that Belle has sent her one and only son flying out the window with the equivalent of a pigeon in a tutu for his "best chance," but that's where we find ourselves currently -- and frankly, listening to Belle and her "Beast" bitterly dress each other down every episode offers all the fairy tale fun of watching your parents get divorced.


And of course, this most bitter and heartbreaking turn of events was engineered by the Evil Queen, who put the Rapid Pregnancy Spell Powder in Belle's tea to push the couple apart.


Yeah, all in all a depressing albeit soapy little episode. And next week, of course, we're headed into the winter finale, which will mean some kind of wacky time travel and Emma in a princess dress so, too late --I'm already excited!

QUESTIONS...

-Why is Belle's Dream Son aged up to like 40?

-Why is Belle's Dream Son dressed like a monk?

-If you had to give your newborn to one person in Storybrooke to raise, who would it be and why?

Once Upon a Time airs Sundays at 8/7c on ABC.

This article originally appears on TV Guide.com.

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Dec 11, 2016
I died laughing over this review
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Dec 01, 2016
If I could pick one person to raise Gideon it would be Belle! For gosh sakes she's his mother.
Second pick would be Rumple, that's his father. Kid would be safe.
If I had to pick for *my newborn... CPS

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Dec 01, 2016
Can someone help me so I don't have to watch again?
1 What is his fate that the baby's going to be disconnected from?

2 How does being cut (or not cut) from your fate keep you from deciding that’s what you’re going to do anyway?

3 How does cutting him from his fate mean Rumple can hang out with him?

4 How does sending him away keep Rumple from being able to use the shears on him? Or finding him?
5 Or being kidnapped by him? He's Obviously great at kidnapping infants and there can't be that many in Storybrooke who look like him...
6 What are the paternity laws in Maine? For the United States?
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Nov 30, 2016
I think we got a winner here. Majority of the vote for "If you had to give your newborn to one person in Storybrooke to raise, who would it be and why?" is Regina.
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Nov 29, 2016
I think they mentioned the dark fairy not the black fairy before and the dark fairy dust or wand. Anyway i loved how the evil queen got one over rumple who needed to be put in his place. Though Regina saving Zelena was great the explanation kinda sucked but then at least it shed light to the fact that being a hero doesn't being having every good quality bestowed upon mankind. A hero can have some grey areas like Regina not forgiving Zelena but also not trying to destroy her life. The Blue Fairy has proven time and again that she is completely useless. In I'll be your mirror we all saw how she helped out Snow and Charming and today as well she sucked. Anyway the finale promo is interesting and well long live the queen!!!
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Nov 29, 2016
I'd consider Regina, Granny, and Rumple as potential parents- NOT Blue!
Right this minute, I would even consider sending my son off with Henry- but he's 14. The 2 of them could study algebra and swordplay together
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Nov 29, 2016
I kinda like Morpheus- he's cute and mysterious, and if that "strand" isn't an umbilical cord, I'm returning my yth U. correspondence diploma. The fact that prenatally he's already smarter than at least 1 of his parents doesn't hurt either.

We did hear about the Black Fairy briefly, earlier on- wasn't it her wand that they used at the end of the Neverland arc? At Blue's funeral? My theory is that Blue kinda hates Black because she had a baby daddy, which Blue didn't (I do wonder what happens to the kids she hijacks...) I wish I had seen Black's costume sooner- lots more pizazz than Blue's!
Rumplestiltskin solved his daddy issues by icing dad- twice. Just to make sure. Maybe this is next on his "to-do" list? His statement to EQ that he plays a very long game makes me think that he wanted the pregnancy to drag out a while- maybe luring Mom to meet her new grandbaby?
Belle has every right to be pissed- no time for an epidural, or even a doctor. Surprised Snow wasn't there, though- too busy grading papers?
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Nov 28, 2016
Belle's son looks as he does because he is still using the image of Morpheus.
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Nov 28, 2016
1. Why is Belle's Dream Son aged up to like 40? Because the writers plan to bring him back next season so he will be the Love interest of the EQ.

2. Why is Belle's Dream Son dressed like a monk? Have no clue. I am still trying to figure out why the writers have ruined Belle and Rumple.

3. If you had to give your newborn to one person in Storybrooke to raise, who would it be and why? the new Regina. When she is not running around chasing the Charmings and Co. She has a study job as Mayor, dresses awesome most days except for this episode, and she raised Henry by herself and lets face it, Henry is the most normal person on the show and that is saying something.

4. I am not liking the season so far. I think the writers went in to a really weird direction of this show and they have no clue how to dig themselves out of the spot they are in. So I am really hoping that the winter finally clears up a lot of their mistakes. Though I won't hold my breath.
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Dec 01, 2016
"I am still trying to figure out why the writers have ruined Belle and Rumple."

Thank you! Me too.
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Nov 28, 2016
The problem with this season is that it is just all over the place and has nothing to do with the previous one. I mean Hide got the town from Gold (which he did nothing with it) then he brought the people from that town here (and did nothing with it) then he made a pact with the evil queen... and umm... yeah, still nothing.

Then we have Emma's vision which really goes nowhere this season. Does anyone really care about it? I don't recall anyone (myself included) even bothered with the guessing game.

Rumple and Belle's story has been done to death.

Jasmine and Aladdin are totally pointless. Also, couldn't they just do the following:
Wish #1: Take us to Agriba.
Wish #2: Destroy Jaffar or whatever evil will be there
Wish #3: I wish Aladdin will be free...

Seriously, how on earth is this even an issue when Snow clearly mentioned her father finding Genie Sydney knowing that's what he did.

Speaking of which, Snow knew about Sydney? But didn't Regina frame her father's murder on him? You'd think she'd resent him the slightest for it.
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Dec 01, 2016
I don't care about Emma's vision because I know it means nothing. There are no stakes here.

About Snow and Sydney: The characters seem to read the scripts and know everything we know, then they forget everything and anything at random. The price of magic?

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Nov 28, 2016
Considering the ONLY kid we saw in town grow up properly and not being abandoned every 5 seconds is Henry... I'd give him to Regina.
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Nov 28, 2016
If I had to give my baby to anyone, it'd be Rumple. If it was in his interests. He's still the only competent person in town.

Also, my theory of Rumple being an emotionally-dead zombie a la Daniel since 3x11 gains more and more credence every episode. Rumple's real soul is facepalming somewhere on Mt. Olympus.
I thought it was pretty obvious that his hatred of fairies came from the fact that the Blue Fairy was responsible for sending Bae to another world... which fuelled him for 300 years, remember? I don't get why they had to rewrite that and give him another magical immortal parent.
How is it even possible that Rumple's entire family ended up becoming evil supervillains separately???

I can't even pretend to give a s**t about Regina's dumb evil clone trying to kill her dumb evil sister.

Also, I haven't managed to see the most recent episodes(they're coming in slow over here), but does Aladdin have anything to do with anything? It sounds like all the new characters are window dressing this season. I know we want more focus on our main cast, but seriously, the only real storyline we've had is that the Evil Queen and Rumple are kind of pissed off.
In the glory days of season 1, everything was tied together in both Storybrooke and the flashbacks. In the decent days of season 2, at least there was always momentum and a feeling of an ongoing drama. How did the show turn so stale?
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Nov 28, 2016
Actually I assumed that Rumple doesn't hate fairies as much as he hated their Storybrooke counterpart. Originally, they said the fairies were nuns and he hated them before gaining his memories.

During the initial beauty and the beast episode, Rumple thought Belle was dead while Regina secretly kept her to be used as a weapon against him. Regina told Rumple that Belle's father sent her to a convict where the nuns tortured her because of her relations with him and so she died, hence Rumple despised nuns.
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Nov 29, 2016
Rumple didn't like Blue even before Bae disappeared- their magics didn't mesh, as I recall. Was this was the Dark One's magic or his mom's legacy? I did wonder about Rumple's mom, once we met his dad- and the spinning ladies (they made me think of the Fates, which argues Rumple might have known about the shears most of his life...)
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Dec 01, 2016
I also thought it was because Bae went to the fairies and they helped him disappear.

It was never about his mom until just now when they, just now, decided his mom was a fairy.
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Dec 01, 2016
I admit, I wondered who Rumple's mom was- before the scene in the forest, I thought it was Blue!

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Nov 28, 2016
If I remember correctly Rumple never had his memories erased by the original curse. Regina confronted him early on and he admitted he knew who he was the whole time. So he hated the sisters because they were bitchy to him and because of what they did as fairies.
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Nov 29, 2016
Not exactly. Rumple did have his memories wiped out, however, he put a fail safe that will let him remember when he heard Emma's name. That's why he asked Snow to tell him her name in the first episode, and the episode ends with Rumple hearing Emma's name in Granny's.
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Dec 01, 2016
I also thought he always had his memories and that he wanted to know Emma's name so he could know for sure it was her.
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Nov 28, 2016
I could've sworn Rumple's hatred of fairies has been mentioned at least once or twice before...
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Nov 28, 2016
They have always been a thorn in his side but Blue helping open the portal Bae fell into and not helping Rumple open another seemed to be he beginning of his real hatred. He has seemed to delight in killing them in the past. Like when he vaporized Cinderella's and took her wand.
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Nov 29, 2016
Do I recall correctly that he despised them for giving magic away? As though it was a personal affront? He said at one point that they were the root of all the problems with magic...
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Dec 01, 2016
If he did, he was probably right.

The fairies have all that magic but don't seem to be to big on really helping anyone unless they have to.
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Nov 28, 2016
Was I the only one disturbed and very disappointed by the explanation Regina gave to Zelena about saving her? That she ended up there to STEAL from her sister??? That she saved her, because "that's what heroes do"??? I mean... WTF???? Regina's redemption arc has been the only solid one so far for me and they ended up making her say that? Regina saving Zelena was the best moment for me in the entire ep, how she was ready to risk killing herself if it meant the EQ wouldn't hurt even one more person... And then she said the worst possible thing and ruined everything... Come on! Shame on you, writers! Shame on you!

But Lily... Sorry to have to tell you this, but they have been mentioning the black fairy for seasons now... They used her wand many times... And they have been dropping hints about Rumple hating fairies every time he has an interaction with them... There was no surprise here.

Also... The OUAT fandom has been speculating that the blue fairy was actually the black fairy, but YAY! She's not! Jaime Murray is!!! And i love her! I hope i get to see more of her! Even if it's on that show...
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Dec 01, 2016
Love Jaime Murray too.
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Nov 29, 2016
I was disappointed by that lame speech too- thought they could have done so much much better! But then Regina and Zelena wouldn't be angry at each other next season, which they seem to require...
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Nov 30, 2016
If i have to be blunt... What they need is really low on my priority list. Even the fact that she said, she saved Zelena because she's a "hero" now, makes her everything BUT a hero! Heroes don't say "That's what heroes do". That's why Snowing has been bugging me so much for seasons! They keep giving speeches about what heroes do, but guess what! Heroes say "That's what a decent human being does."! And... fuck it, they could have made her say "I saved you because i couldn't bare another person to be hurt by her (EQ) and that doesn't mean i don't still blame you." ... They could have wrote "Because you're still my sister and even if i can't stand you, i don't want you to die."... But no! They wrote "Because that's what heroes do.". And in that moment i fucking wanted to slap Regina. And i love her! But she deserves that slap!
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Dec 01, 2016
Would pay money to see you slap her in that moment.


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Dec 01, 2016
I would pay money to be offered that chance! :D
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Nov 28, 2016
Sarcastic back stabbing Rumple mocking Queen is back... Finally!
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Nov 28, 2016
"would you believe she abandoned him? Talk about an out-of-left-field, never-seen-before twist! Where do these writers come up with these unprecedented turns of plot, each more original than the last?!" Lol, the sarcasm is rich with this one.
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Nov 28, 2016
Hopefully we see more of the black fairy, as she was a nice addition .
Good review as always.
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Nov 28, 2016
How come captain Swan seems to be the go to problem solving duo now?
We get it already writers swan queen bad, unless you actually want to turn around this shower of sh*t in which case swan queen is your only way to go
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Nov 28, 2016
If I had to give my newborn to one person to raise?
Regina. Say what you will, but Henry turned out alright, and I think he's the only one who isn't deeply psychologically flawed.
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Nov 28, 2016
Except for that one time when she abused him throughout season 1. Just saying. He didn't leave town because he was getting too many cupcakes.
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Dec 01, 2016
Agreed I like Zelena or Rumple as parents better. They clearly love their kids. Also it would give them believable redemption reasons to change = good story.
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Nov 28, 2016
This comment has been removed.
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Nov 28, 2016
Rumple always hated fairies because Blue gave that magic bean to Bae in SE1. That wasn't introduced just in this ep. And i do believe there was a mention of Black Fairy somewhere...something about a wand of hers that they had to use...and they did, in a CHURCH. Someone back me up on this.

1: Her dream son is 40 because he never moved out and wasted his life.
2: See answer one.
3: Granny. Cuz she don't f*ck around and would raise them right. Unless it's a girl then she would totally let her me the town ho.
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Nov 29, 2016
You are correct about the Black Fairy. Her wand was reputedly even more powerful than Blue's. Argues that she may have been Blue's boss?
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Nov 28, 2016
To be fair, Ruby may have had a thing for leaving very little clothes, but I do not remember her doing any actual "hoing".
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Nov 28, 2016
*be
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Nov 28, 2016
Excellent review again, Lily! Hitting every note of the unrealistic plotline and unoriginal plot idea!!


At this point, I am certain that Shady is the one who forced Black to give up her child, that drove Black crazy, so she starts stealing babies.
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Nov 28, 2016
If I have a new born, I am definitely giving it to Regina. She is the only person who clocked in the most parental hours. Or Zelena is a reasonable candidate too, better than Snowing and fairies.

Evil Queen's performance was top notch. When she said, "Ok yes, I did the actual dosing" I was squealing so hard. Her spicy level is just right. I don't know how Lana Parrilla prepares to play her. She just breaths life in the characters.

Regina is kinda too righteous and almost boring now... And she totally burned bridge with Zelena. Wonder how they will recover from that.

Also, I am convinced that Shady Blue is Black Fairy. You never see them in the same place at the same time.
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Nov 28, 2016
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Nov 28, 2016
Regina's jacket is still a sweet deal compared to whatever hippie thing is Emma wearing.

The monk dress could be explained by shipping him off with the shady blue fairy.
And I cannot believe that H.G.Wells is Rumple's mom.
Well, before I would say I'd give the kid to Regina as she seems to be the only one experienced in actually raising a child instead of abandoning it for whatever purpose it serves the plot, but I have this feeling that she and Zelena kinda misplaced baby!Robin already, so probably not a good idea. Yes, after the last episode Regina decided that her son is in the high school and she is done with raising kids. By the look of next week's promo she is going to travel to FT!AU and bang princess Emma or whatever she is into these days.

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Nov 28, 2016
To be fair, we did hear about the Black Fairy before this episode. Long before. Way back in Season 1, Episode 3. Snow had some of her dust, and used it to turn the trolls into bugs. And thus we saw it again during S3's time travel extravaganza. But mainly we heard about her during Season 3, Episode 11. The heroes had to get her wand from Blue -- who was, like, dead at the time and then not -- so that they could use it to switch Pan and Henry's bodies back. Personally I've always wanted to meet her, and I found the twist that she was Rumple's mother cool! Though really I wanted her to be the shady, shady Blue Fairy's true self.
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Nov 28, 2016
I am still bothered by the disturbing image in my head of where was Shady hiding that wand. Three years later I am still disturbed. Also, 3x11 was the last decent episode of OUAT and for all intents and purposes the show could have just as well ended with Emma and Henry leaving for New York while everyone else is eaten by purple smoke. Sad, but still decent ending to what has later became a total s***fest.
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Nov 28, 2016
3x11 is the only sensible finale of OUAT, but it's not exactly cleancut either. The Peter Pan arc was pretty boring for the most part, and season 4 had lots of great elements to it. Even season 5 had good ideas, even if they weren't executed very well.
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Nov 30, 2016
That is the problem - there were some good plot ideas, but they were poorly executed. If season 5 was indeed about the legend of King Arthur and Emma's fight with darkness, it could have been good. Instead, it has become Once Upon a Hook and running around with beards in tow. If season 4 wasn't struggling to gain audience based on currently popular franchise and instead focused on the development of already existing characters, it could have been fun at times. If Hood just left with Marian to live their happily ever after, I'd happy watch Regina get over it and move on with her life. Instead we got some seriously far-fetched soap opera plot twists, everyone being related to everyone and characters that just won't stay dead. Remember when people on the show actually stayed dead like Graham or Cora?

And spoilers say that we would be subjected to more undead Hood and I just hate his face at this point, my childhood hero has become adulterous forrest hobo that just won't stay dead and I just can't anymore.

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Nov 28, 2016
Oh, and Rumple's hatred for fairies has been well-established too. Back in Season 1, Episode 14 Leroy questioned why he hates nuns, for he seemed to take pleasure in the idea of evicting them, and he assured that he has his reasons. I thought it was to do with Blue giving Bae the bean that meant he was separated from Rumple, but ig there was more to it. His contempt for them has been well-shown through the series, like when he had Hook vaccum them all up in that hat back in 4a.
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