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This article focuses on Kathryn Nolan's Storybrooke persona.
For her Enchanted Forest counterpart, see Abigail.

I've always had this irrational fear of leaving Storybrooke, like something was holding me back... is that crazy?
—Kathryn to Regina src

Kathryn Nolan is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. She débuts in the third episode of the first season. She is portrayed by guest star Anastasia Griffith, and is the Storybrooke counterpart of Abigail.


For events occurring before the casting of the first curse, see Abigail.

During First Curse

After the casting of the Dark Curse, Kathryn becomes the wife of David Nolan. Though false memories implanted by the curse, she remembers having a heated argument with her husband, which ended once he stormed out of the house and never returned since. One fateful day, she learns from mayor Regina that David has been a patient in the hospital and was rescued after wandering into the woods since waking up from a coma. She hastens to the hospital and reunites with him. She thanks the efforts of Mary Margaret, who saved her husband's life. ("Snow Falls")

While David is still in recovery, Kathryn brings along old photos from their life together in an attempt to help him remember. She shows him a photo of their dog, Ajax, which he seems to recall. Though Kathryn is not supposed to see him outside of visiting hours, she can't help but approach David while he is out on doctor ordered walking exercise and hands him his favorite baked muffins. ("That Still Small Voice")

Following discharge from the hospital, she surprises David at home with a party filled with their close friends, though he doesn't recognize anyone. They briefly converse with Dr. Whale, who took care of David as a patient. Despite the happy front, Kathryn senses that her husband is drifting farther away. She hides out in the kitchen while Regina notices and pushes her to go be with David. Kathryn earns a friendship out of Regina, who knows what it's like to lose someone she loved due to her own unwillingness to fight for him. She goes to look for David and asks around, but cannot find him. After the party is over, Kathryn attempts to get closer to David by kissing him, but he pulls away and states that it doesn't feel right. Later, Kathryn is bombarded with a decision from David's choice to leave her. Devastated, she can do nothing, but finds him on the house doorstep one night. He decides to give their marriage a try. ("The Shepherd")

In an effort to reconnect, they drive to the diner during the mornings. While Kathryn waits in the car, David goes to pick up coffee for them. During one upcoming storm in town, she goes with Regina to the pharmacy to grab supplies. One of these things is a pregnancy test, which spills out from her shopping cart when she bumps into Mary Margaret. As she picks everything up, Mary Margaret hands back the test and wishes her luck. The test turns up negative for pregnancy, and she only tells David after finding out. In a discussion with him, she is still unhappy with the state of their marriage. David promises to try harder and suggests they attend therapy sessions together. ("7:15 A.M.")

Kathryn applies to a law school in Boston and is accepted. Over dinner, she tells David the news and her hopes of moving to Boston with him to start afresh. Kathryn suggests that, rather than recreating their past together, they should make new memories in a different setting, which is perhaps something their marriage needs. While she is looking up possible housing options in Boston, David apologetically rejects the notion of moving away with her. He breaks it to Kathryn gently that they can't be together due to not connecting, but this shouldn't keep her from her dream of law school. Heartbroken, she runs to Regina in tears and informs her of what transpired. Regina has a strange reaction and mutters something about a home wrecker. Kathryn pushes her for the truth when Regina is reluctant to share the information, and is handed some photos Sidney secretly took of David and Mary Margaret having an affair. Kathryn is furious that Regina, who she considered a friend, kept all this from her. She leaves to march right into the school hallway, roughly brushing past the gym teacher, Jim, to confront Mary Margaret with a resounding slap across the face that leaves bystanders and the schoolteacher herself stunned. As Mary Margaret starts to apologize, Kathryn unleashes anger towards her for David's flimsy excuse that they weren't connecting in the marriage rather than admitting the truth. Shaken, Mary Margaret is surprised to learn David did not tell Kathryn about the affair. Kathryn vehemently declares the two of them deserve each other, and stomps off. After having time to cool down, she comes to terms with the affair and realizes what David and Mary Margaret have is real love, and writes a letter to her ex-husband encouraging them to stay together. Later, Kathryn apologizes to Regina for her earlier actions. She is still planning to move to Boston and tells her about the letter for David. Kathryn voices fears she's always had of leaving town, which indirectly hints at the Dark Curse's effects. That night, she packs everything up and begins driving out of town. ("What Happened to Frederick")

Unbeknownst to Kathryn, Regina and Mr. Gold have conspired to make her disappear so Mary Margaret will be blamed for murder. On the drive out of Storybrooke, Kathryn crashes her car. She is kidnapped and held as a prisoner in a room. During this period, food and water are always provided for her, though she never sees anyone. After some time, Kathryn is drugged and wakes up in a field outside of town. Weakly, she manages to crawl the entire way to the alley behind the diner where Ruby, in disbelief, alerts Sheriff Emma to her. ("The Stable Boy")

Kathryn is taken into the hospital to undergo a detox and filter out the drugs in her system. Emma comes to take a statement from her, to which Kathryn recounts everything from the car crash to how she ended up in the alley. She is genuinely confused and shocked when Emma alludes that Mary Margaret was set up for her murder. Later in the day, while resting up, she is startled awake by David's presence in her hospital room. He apologizes for everything that occurred between them, which she accepts and sadly admits perhaps they were not meant to be. ("The Return")

After First Curse

After the breaking of the Dark Curse, Kathryn reunites with her true love, Jim, and they begin living together in her house.[1]

The devious Pan infiltrates Storybrooke by previously switching bodies with Henry and sets out to cast his own version of the Dark Curse. Regina puts a stop to it by undoing the curse she cast, but also getting rid of Pan's curse in the process. As a price, Storybrooke will be wiped out and all residents will have to return to the Enchanted Forest. Once Regina's task is done, everyone except Emma and Henry, who left town on the mayor's request, is engulfed by the curse's purple smoke. ("Going Home")

For events occurring before the casting of the second curse, see Abigail.

During Second Curse

A new curse is cast by none other than Snow White; returning the Enchanted Forest inhabitants to Storybrooke. However, as a result of Zelena's interference, everyone's last recollection is the final day in Storybrooke when Regina stopped Pan's curse. ("Witch Hunt", "A Curious Thing")

Regina, after bestowing Henry with a kiss of true love, breaks the second curse. Like everyone else, Kathryn regains her lost memories of the missing year in the Enchanted Forest. ("A Curious Thing")

After Second Curse
In a diner celebration welcoming David and Mary Margaret's newborn son, Kathryn attends the party and engages in conversation with Granny. Suddenly, the townspeople notice a stream of light radiating to the sky, which is the activation of the Wicked Witch Zelena's time spell. ("Snow Drifts")



  • The surname "Nolan" is of Irish origin derived from the word "nuall" that means "noble, famous".[2]

Character Notes

Production Notes

  • Kathryn is one of the secondary characters whose story showrunners Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis cogitated to include tidbits of in a Season Six feature, but decided it might draw too much the attention away from the main storyline.[5]

Set Dressing


  • "What Happened to Frederick" shows that the day Kathryn disappears, and the day before, is a school day. On the first day, she learns about David's affair and confronts Mary Margaret at school where students and teachers are milling about. When Kathryn decides to leave Storybrooke, she apologizes to Regina for "what happened yesterday" (when she took her anger out on Regina) while Emma seeks out Henry at school. On the same day, Kathryn departs, and Regina burns the letter. However, according to Kathryn's phone records, she disappeared on a Sunday.[7] In the U.S., school classes are not in session during weekends.
    • At the end of the episode, Kathryn has been missing for twenty-four hours; meaning that this episode takes place the day after she disappears. David tells Emma that he last spoke to Kathryn "yesterday afternoon" (and stresses that he is telling the truth), but also says that he hasn't spoken to her since ending their relationship. However, "What Happened to Frederick" shows that David broke up with Kathryn the day before she disappeared. In addition, Emma says to Sidney that David told her that he didn't speak to Kathryn the day before she disappeared, though, in fact, he said he did. This complicates matters even more so when Emma discovers that Kathryn did talk to David on the phone the day she disappeared, but "Red-Handed" and "Heart of Darkness" establish that he doesn't remember the phone call because of a memory blackout.
  • In "The Stable Boy", Kathryn's first name is misspelled "Katherine" in the Storybrooke Daily Mirror.[8]


Note: "Archive" denotes archive footage.


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