Once Upon a Time

Season 1 Episode 4

The Price of Gold

Aired Friday 8:00 PM Nov 13, 2011 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (11)

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out of 10
378 votes
  • Gone Baby Gone

    An interesting take on the Cinderella yarn, ''Once...'' manages to offer up another strong contender for why this is one of the best new shows to come around in quite a while. It mixes all of the right ingredients to keep things both grounded and, at the same time, as light as air. Rumpelstilskin has his greasy fingers in everyones dinner, and this episode, in particular, is more centered around him and his penchant for making deals than on Cinderella herself. Naturally, Emma's rash decision to make a deal with Mr. Gold down the line, while noble, will obviously bite her in the apple-bottomed ass! It's still unclear whether or not Mr. Gold knows of his fairytale past, it's really difficult to say, but that's what makes this show so fun.
  • interesting episode...

    This episode is by far the most intriguing so far. It may not have been what we were used to thus far, but that by no means it was not good. In fact, it raised interesting questions about Rumplestiltskin that really get one's mind thinking. I mean, really... why would he want Cinderella's baby? Why, in fact, would he want any baby? And one could easily think of how he asked Snow for the NAME of her baby. But that's not the same thing, now is it? He is an intriguing character and Robert Carlyle could not be doing a better job at playing him.

    As for those who re disappointed that teh storyline here is not the Cindereall story we all know and have heard 1000 times.... isn't 1000 times enough? This is not a historical documentary; it is a fictional show that alters, intertwines and gives new shape to these old fairy tale characters. If you want a rehashing of the stories that were read to you as a child, then go to the library and head to the kids' section. This is a new take and I am thrilled so far by it
  • Very different storyline, but just as good as the others, if not better.

    I guess it's fair to say that this episode's storyline was not quite the same or similar to the first three. It branched out into a totally different storyline, and the characters like the Evil Queen, Snow White and Prince Charming played very minimal roles, both in past and present.

    Aside from that, the storyline was actually extremely interesting. We learnt more about Rumpelstiltskin, a.k.a. Mr. Gold, as well as Cinderella. Storyline didn't og how I expecfted, and it certainly branched off the traditional Cinderella story, but that's not a bad thing! It made it unpredictable and very enjoyable!

    I'm interested to know whether or not Cinderella will play any sort of a major role throughout the future episodes, but even if she doesn't, this episode could have some extreme ramifications for Ema, in many ways.

    Keep it up, OUaT!!! I'm loving this show after just four episodes and I can't wait for more!!! :)
  • Not what I expecting, but it wasn't bad either..

    The episode is split into Cinderella's deal with Rumpelstilskin, and the consequences of her choice in Fairy Tale world, and the events that followed Ashley's deal with Mr. Gold in Storybrooke.

    Okay, so it wasn't the tale I was expecting. What I thought we'd see was Cinderella dealing with her evil stepmother and stepsisters, and then escaping to the ball, and meeting her prince where she'd then have to deal with Rumpelstilskin or the evil queen. A re-inactment of the original story with a twist basically. Instead I got a pregnant Cinderella trying to save her baby alongside a prince who barely had precense. I didn't enjoy the Fairty Tale world part very much, however I did think the scene where Cinderella tried to get Rumpelstilskin to sign the contract was quite exiting.

    On the other hand, I loved the StoryBrooke parts of the episodes!!! There was character development for Emma. You can see she regretted giving her son up, and it shows in how determined she is to help Ashley. Everything she did for her makes her a hero in my oponion and that deffinately makes me want to root for her. I loved the speech she gave her about how she needed to make things happen, and then it was followed by another beautiful speech about how she shouldn't run away.

    Anyway, yes, it dosen't have the mystical umph and exitement the previous 3 had, and Cinderella wasn't as likeable as Snow White, which is odd considering I preffered Cinderella growing up, but it was entertaining, and well written and It dosen't deserve less than a 7 :D
  • Review: The Price of Gold

    This episode told the story of Cinderella in the flashbacks, and Ashley's pregnancy in the present-day.

    This was the first episode that really disappointed me. The casting for Cinderella wasn't that great. The character wasn't very likeable, especially because she was portrayed as rather dim, not reading the contract, and making a deal with Rumplestiltskin even though he killed the Fairy Godmother.

    I really didn't like the major change in the Cinderella story... I've loved the twists so far, but this one totally distorted the original story and Rumplesiltskin felt forced in.

    The present-day tale of Ashley was't that engrossing, plus it was frustrating to see Emma make a deal with Mr. Gold and now she owes him. It would have been better if Emma had used the law to force Mr. Gold's hand.

    There were some good moments with Henry and Emma, though, but overall, the casting and writing both contributed to this being a mediocre and disappointing episode.
  • Not quite as clever as the first three episodes, but still the best new show on television.


    I didn't love this episode quite as much, but I can't quite put my finger on why. I think the first three were just so brilliant in their storytelling that this one paled by comparison. Also, I thought Cinderella's prince lacked presence. It made me realize how much fairy tales are told from the female POV, and the princes are often just supporting characters. We have strong female leads: Emma, Regina, Snow White, Cinderella. With only two prominent male secondary characters, the Sheriff and Rumplestiltskin. I am loving Emma more and more, the way she stood up to Gold was impressive. Now I cringe to think what "favor" he will demand of her when she agreed to the deal. He already has a hold over her, because Snow White told him the name of her daughter. That's what's fun about this show: it always makes you want to know what will happen next.

  • This episode was very disappointing i was not expecting this


    They showed first African american character, the fairy god mother, and they did not even let her be alive for 30 seconds .. she appeared and instantly was killed they did not even let her finish what she was saying. ... i mean she was talking and they did not even let her finish her introducing her self and zap ... dead!!! ... this is new low in the rule that African american artist must die first in any movie... it was sad

  • 104


    So the show overall is pretty hokey but it's something original for once, and I'm liking the cast and the story lines so I'm going to keep watching. This was an interesting take on Cinderella, I like how they don't make the story exactly like it is in the story books. The comparisons to real life continue to amuse me.

    In my opinion, they need to shove Ginnifer Goodwin center stage most of the time, she's clearly the strongest of the cast and seeing what she did on Big Love, I know she has the potential to work wonders on this show.

    Jennifer Morrison is pretty good, I definitely will always miss her as Cameron on House but she's doing well and at least this role is better than her insufferable How I Met Your Mother role. Anyway, good episode, interesting twists, weird ending (socks under the bed, wha..?), overall entertaining hour of television.

  • "The Price Of Gold" is all about people changing their lives.


    There are different ways for people to change their lives. Sometimes people have to change their lives because life changes. Isn't it annoying when someone just says the same thing over and over again? It's a bad habit of the Once Upon A Time writers, and David H. Goldman continues to smack the audience over the head with a theme, but "The Price of Gold" is actually the best episode of the series thus far. There's a fair share of forward momentum for the story and Jennifer Morrison gets a lot of screen time, but the biggest improvement is in the flashbacks, as Rumpelstiltskin takes the spotlight for a revised Cinderella story.

    Last week's episode gave a us a different version of Snow White and Prince Charming's courtship, but there wasn't a big twist to any of the essential elements of her story. The Evil Queen, Huntsman, and seven dwarves never appeared in the flashback, focusing instead on a mangy Snow White flirting in the woods and fighting some trolls. This week's flashback begins with Cinderella sweeping as her stepfamily goes to the palace ball, and when her Fairy Godmother appears, Rumpelstiltskin incinerates her to get his hands on her magic wand. The familiar fairy tale is no longer so familiar, and the flashbacks are suddenly a lot more interesting. Prince Charming and Snow White are also brought into the mix, and seeing how the characters intersect and affect each other reveals the storytelling potential in the flashbacks.

    Cinderella makes a deal with Rumpelstiltskin to get her fairy-tale evening at the palace, and the imp returns at Cinderella's wedding ceremony to tell her that the payment for his magic is her first born. Meanwhile, in Storybrooke, 19-year-old Ashley is forced by her boyfriend's father to sell her baby to pawnbroker Mr. Gold, who will apparently give it a good home. When Emma gives Ashley a rousing John Locke-inspired speech about people not being able to tell her what she can't do, Ashley runs away with Gold's merchandise. He hires Emma to track down the pregnant thief, and when Ashley wants to keep the child, Emma confronts her own fears about being a mother. She realizes that she is ready to change her life to be closer to her son, because, as Snow White tells Cinderella on her wedding day, "Anyone can change her life."

    Gold hires Emma under the pretense that she has stolen something from him, but he proves to have more devious intentions than just getting back the child. The dark curse used by the Evil Queen was given to her by Rumpelstiltskin, and it's entirely possible he's the bigger bad on this series. Hopefully that's the case, because Robert Carlyle is giving us a much more dimensional villain in Mr. Gold than Lana Parilla's Regina, who continues to be a caricature. Maybe because she's aware of her true self she doesn't need to hide under a façade of humanity? Or maybe the writers don't know what to do with her. Carlyle turns up the camp considerably as Rumpelstiltskin, but it works specifically because of the quiet menace he brings to Mr. Gold. And then there are moments when Rumpelstiltskin goes from ham to horror, like his scene after Cinderella's prince disappears. Sitting in a cage with wide eyes, he shrieks, "In this world or the next, Cinderella, I Will Have That Baby!" Suddenly he's not an imp, but a demon. And he's angry.

    My opinion of Henry remains the same, and he's around for most of the episode as Emma deals with her mommy issues. When Regina tries to run Emma out of town by exploiting her nomadic past, Emma decides to lay some roots in Storybrooke. Goldman finds a clever way to connect the Henry/Emma scenes to the flashbacks by turning their detective adventure into Henry's Cinderella story, complete with last-minute shoe drama. Henry spends the perfect day with his mom, and when he runs upstairs to be in his room by the time Regina gets home, he leaves a sneaker on the stairs. It incorporates the big dramatic moment of the fairy tale into Henry's story, and Regina yells at him for leaving his shoes on the stairs, but otherwise his day has a happy ending.

    He might be on the nose, but Goldman does strong work showing the juxtaposition between reality and fantasy in a less contrived way than last week's episode. Combining the Cinderella and Rumpelstiltskin fairy tales creates a coming-of-age morality tale about a girl that gets everything she wants, but is punished for not accepting the consequences of her actions. As Cinderella is punished for her actions, Emma is beginning to forgive her own, and decides to take a more active role in Henry's life. After deciding to keep the baby, the father of Ashley's child comes to her hospital room to see his newborn daughter, Alexandra; sometimes fairy tales end badly, and sometimes reality can turn out better than fantasy.

    There haven't been many Fables parallels in the last two episodes, but this week has a big one: Emma's new job. In Fables, Snow White is the deputy mayor of Fabletown, and Sheriff Graham offers Emma a deputy sheriff position this episode, which she accepts. We don't have confirmation that Graham is the Big Bad Wolf beyond his tracking abilities and facial hair, but if he is, that makes him Sheriff in both stories as well. Sheriff Graham is also the subject of this week's wonderfully soapy cliffhanger, revealing that he's flirting with Emma but sleeping with Regina. I wasn't expecting the series to go in that direction, but any relationship development is going to help get these characters into more interesting, complex situations, no matter how forced those developments may be. I just hope they don't waste the opportunity for a really obvious "he's a dog" joke.

  • The Price of Gold


    The Price of Gold was a perfect episode of Once Upon A Time and I really enjoyed watching this episode because the story of Cinderella is explored and the writers, actors, and over all production were all awesome and on par with the series so far. It was really nice to get more back story aboutRumpelstiltskin and his penchant for making deals with high prices. Henry forces himself on Emma as she does some more investigating and the Regina has an intense meeting with the Sheriff. I like where this is all going and look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!!!

  • ABC's Once Upon A Time does it again; another terrific episode!


    This episode "The Price of Gold" was wonderful; very thought provoking and insightful, especially with Rumpelstiltskin's mysterious link to Cinderella. The episode was original and very well written. This show is really becoming one of my favorites and i usually do not like these "fantasy" type shows, but this one is so well written and has a great cast as well. I enjoyed this episode because it really took us deeper into the "real world" of these great characters and still had a great "Fairy Tale World" part as well. Thank you ABC for giving this show a chance.