"Snow Falls" is the third episode of Season One of ABC's Once Upon a Time. It was written by Liz Tigelaar and directed by Dean White. It is the third episode of the series overall, and premiered on November 6, 2011.
At Henry's urging, Emma convinces Mary Margaret to pay a visit to a comatose John Doe in the hospital and to read to him from the storybook. But Mary Margaret is stunned at the outcome of her visit. Meanwhile, back in the fairytale world, Prince Charming meets Snow White for the first time in a most unexpected way.
A coach containing Prince Charming and his fiancée, Abigail, makes its way through the woods. She complains about the bumpy ride and how they should have taken the Troll Road. They come to a tree blocking the road, and Prince Charming gets out to help his men remove it, and realizes that it has been cut down. Meanwhile, a thief reaches into the coach, steals a package of jewels, and rides off.
Prince Charming goes after the thief, knocks the person off their horse, and discovers that it is a woman. She knocks him in the head with a rock, leaving a cut on his chin, and then rides off on his horse. As he watches her go, Prince Charming vows that he will find her, no matter where she goes.
Mary Margaret is at the diner chatting with her date, Dr. Whale, who is busy admiring Ruby, the waitress. When she realizes it is not going well, Mary Margaret leaves. She notices Emma Swan living in her car on the streets, because no one will give her a room. Clearly pleased that Emma stayed for Henry Mill's sake, Mary Margaret offers to let Emma stay with her, but Emma warns that she is not the "roommate type".
The next day, Mary Margaret is volunteering at the hospital, and she notices Henry sitting with John Doe . He asks what is wrong with the patient, and Mary Margaret explains that he has been there as long as she has been volunteering, and no one knows who he is or what family he has. Henry questions her certainty that she does not know who he is, but Mary Margaret assures him that she does not. Henry meets with Emma and tells her that he has found her father, Prince Charming, and that he is the John Doe patient. He shows Emma the storybook and points out that Prince Charming and John Doe have the same scar on the cheek. Henry believes that the curse is keeping John Doe and Mary Margaret apart, by keeping him in a coma. Emma does not believe it, but Henry insists that they have to get Mary Margaret to read the story to the coma patient, to remind them of who they are. Emma agrees, but says that she will ask her. Emma then talks to Mary Margaret and suggests that she play along with Henry's idea, so that he will realize that he is wrong on his own, when nothing happens. Mary Margaret admits that it is a good idea, and Emma tells her that they will meet at Granny's Diner the next day, for breakfast for a full report.
Mary Margaret starts reading the fairy tale book to John Doe, telling the story of how Prince Charming chased the thief and then fell in love with her. As she reads, John Doe suddenly grabs her hand. She summons Dr. Whale, but he says all the instrument readings are still steady, with no changes. He suggests that she might have dozed off and imagined things, and then tells her to go home and get some sleep. Once Mary Margaret leaves, Dr. Whale calls Regina Mills and tells her what happened, including the fact that Mary Margaret was involved and that there was some minor brain-wave fluctuation. At home, Mary Margaret resumes reading the story to herself.
Snow White prepares to leave her crude home in a log, taking her few possessions with her. She steps out and immediately is snagged in a trap, set by Prince Charming. He demands that she return the pouch with the jewelry, but Snow White says that she has sold them. She points out that he must have hundreds of jewels, but Prince Charming says that one of them was his mother's ring, which he planned to give to his fiancée. Disgusted, Snow White says that it must be a marriage of convenience, because no one marries for true love, and Prince Charming defends it as being a necessary union. When Snow White refuses to return the jewels, Prince Charming threatens to turn her over to the Evil Queen, who has sentenced her to death for murder and treason. Snow White agrees, and Prince Charming releases her.
Emma Swan meets Henry at the diner, and Mary Margaret comes in to tell them that John Doe grabbed her hand. Henry is pleased and says that she has to read to him again, and Mary Margaret immediately races off, telling Emma that he may not be Prince Charming, but that she must have reached him somehow. When they get to the hospital, Sheriff Graham is there and informs them that the patient has gone missing. Regina is there, looking into the matter as well, and demands to know why Emma is there. She realizes that Henry lied to her, when he said he was going to the arcade. Henry wonders aloud what Regina had to do with John Doe's disappearance, and Emma points out that it is unusual that she would be there. Regina explains that she is the patient's emergency contact, after she found him by the road years ago and brought him to the hospital. Emma offers to help find him, but Regina tells her to stay out of it and walks away with Henry.
Graham begins organizing the search and talks to the two employees, Leroy and Walter. They check the security tapes, and Emma realizes it is the wrong tape. When they find the right one, they confirm that, four hours ago, John Doe walked out, on his own, into the nearby woods.
Snow White leads Prince Charming through the woods to where she sold the jewels, and he notices her holding a necklace. She tells him not to worry about it, but he snatches it away. He realizes that it is filled with dust, and she explains that it contains fairy dust that can transform an adversary into a harmless form. Prince Charming figures that she plans to use it on the Evil Queen and points out that Snow White has a lot of anger. The thief explains that the charges against her are false and that she only lived because the Queen sent the Huntsman to rip out her heart, but he took pity on her and let her go. Snow White tells Prince Charming that she only wants to get enough money to leave for another realm, and she thought the coach belonged to the Queen. They come to a stream, and Snow White asks for a drink. When Prince Charming agrees, they drink and she shoves him into the water and runs off. However, when the Evil Queen's Black Knights find her and close in, Snow White realizes that Prince Charming still has her necklace.
Graham, Emma, and Mary Margaret follow John Doe's trail. While the sheriff goes ahead, Mary Margaret asks Emma how she became a bail bondsman. Emma replies that she has been doing it as long as she can remember. When Mary Margaret pushes the issue and asks about her parents, Emma says that she never did find her parents. Henry sneaks away from his mother and comes to find them. He tells Mary Margaret that John Doe is looking for her.
The lead Black Knight prepares to kill Snow White, when Prince Charming arrives and kills him with an arrow. He takes on the second knight, while the third one snatches up Snow White and rides away. Prince Charming grabs an arrow and manages to shoot the knight, killing him, and Snow White rides back. She points out that he saved her, and Prince Charming says that it was the honorable thing to do. He reminds her that they need to get the jewels, and Snow White says that the troll group she sold them to are just over the next rise.
Mary Margaret does not believe Henry, who insists that she needs to stop and let John Doe catch up to her. Emma tells him to go home, but as Henry argues, Graham calls them over. He has found John Doe's patient tag with blood on it.
Prince Charming and Snow White arrive at the Troll Bridge and proceed on foot. The trolls climb up over the edge to surround them, and Snow White tries to negotiate for the ring. They suspect it is a setup and attack, and the lead troll has his men search Prince Charming. They find Snow White's necklace and toss it to the ground, and then find the poster for Snow White and realize who she is. Prince Charming grabs his sword and drives them back, and Snow White grabs her necklace and runs. However, the trolls grab Prince Charming and prepare to kill him. Snow White returns and uses the fairy dust to transform the trolls into insects, saving the prince, but using all of the dust. He thanks her, to which she retorts with his words, that it was the honorable thing to do. They continue on with the jewels.
By following the trail to the old toll bridge, the group finds John Doe lying in the stream. They pull him out, and Mary Margaret begs him to come back to them, and to her. She administers CPR, and he finally revives. Looking up, he says that she saved him, while an astonished Emma looks on. John Doe admits that he does not know who he is, and Mary Margaret tells him that he will be okay. They take him to the hospital, and Dr. Whale works on him. A woman runs in, calling the patient "David", and Dr. Whale ushers her back. Regina arrives to confirm that the woman is Kathryn Nolan, the man's wife.
Prince Charming gives Snow White the gold back, and she gives him the ring. He comments that it is not her style, and she tries it on. He stares at her for a moment, and then Snow White agrees that it is not her style and hands it back. Prince Charming offers her the rest of the jewels, but she says that she has what she needs. He wishes her well, and says that if she needs anything... and Snow White finishes the sentiment: "he'll always find her". They say their goodbyes and go their separate ways. Snow White turns and looks back, hesitating for a moment, and then continuing on.
Kathryn comes over to Mary Margaret, Emma, and Henry in the hospital, thanking them for their help. She explains that she and her husband had been having marital problems, so she had told him that, if he did not want to be married to her, he should leave. She had assumed that he left town and did not know that he had been injured. Now Kathryn has a second chance, to say she is sorry. Dr. Whale tells everyone present that David is physically okay, but he has no memory of his past life. Dr Whale suggests that David's first instinct was to find something familiar, and Henry says he was looking for someone. As Kathryn goes to her husband, Henry goes to get his backpack. He whispers to Mary Margaret that David had been going to the bridge to look for her, and that they belonged together. As Regina leaves with Henry, Emma catches up to her and points out that Kathryn's story sounds fake. She points out how convenient it is that Regina just now found Kathryn, and Regina says that after Emma went over the tapes, they checked past tapes and found out that David mentioned Kathryn's name in his sleep from time to time. The mayor tells Emma that true love won out and, that thanks to Emma and Mary Margaret, the couple will now be together forever. Regina says that not having someone is the worst curse imaginable and leaves. Mary Margaret watches as Kathryn and David embrace. He looks up at her and seems to recognize her, while Mary Margaret looks at the ring that she is wearing. Later, Mary Margaret is at home when Emma arrives at her doorstep and says she wants to take her up on her offer of a spare room.
This scene is included on Once Upon a Time: The Complete First Season.
"Responsibility" (Scene 25)
Emma, Mary Margaret and Sheriff Graham watch the security tape that shows John Doe exiting into the woods. They leave and Graham calls for backup. Emma wants Mary Margaret to stay behind, but she disagrees and wants to go with them. Mary Margaret feels it is her fault that David woke up and ran off. She threatens to go off on her own. After hearing that, Emma agrees to let her come.
- Footage from Snow White and Prince Charming's scenes were re-used in the Season Three finale "Snow Drifts" and "There's No Place Like Home", which combines old footage and reshoots.
- Josh Dallas bears the same real-life chin scar as his character Prince Charming.
- Mary Margaret's statement to Emma, "I'm a teacher, not a nun", refers to the fact that, in the original script, Mary Margaret was a nun.
- In the scene where Snow White is captured by the Evil Queen's henchmen, Ginnifer Goodwin tweeted that the horse ran into her and sent her flying with injuries to the hand and face. She went to the emergency room for stitches and later came back to work.
- The water was very cold when they filmed the scene where the amnesiac David is lying unconscious in a creek and Josh Dallas almost froze, but the crew had a hot tub nearby to warm him up between takes and scenes.
- For the part where Mary Margaret revives David, Ginnifer Goodwin was taught CPR by a medic, but it "looked bad". Jennifer Morrison then taught her how they did it on the latter's old television series House because CPR is more dramatic on-screen.
- The Enchanted Forest flashbacks occur immediately after the events of "The Shepherd", concurrently with "Snow Drifts" and "There's No Place Like Home" and before "Ariel".
- The Storybrooke events of this episode occur after the events of "The Thing You Love Most" and before the events of "The Price of Gold". (For more details, see the Land Without Magic timeline)
- Prince Charming and Princess Abigail first meet during the events of "The Shepherd". The scene of the pair in the carriage, as well as Snow White preparing to attack it, is also further explored in that episode.
- How Snow White became a bandit, is explained in "Heartless".
- This episode shows Snow White and Prince Charming's first meeting. Their storied relationship is explored throughout much of the series, notably in "Pilot", "7:15 A.M.", "Heart of Darkness", and "Lady of the Lake".
- Prince Charming's line to Snow White, "You're a girl", is repeated in "Broken" from Aurora to Mulan.
- The counterpart of the mysterious Dr. Whale is revealed in "The Doctor".
- The history of the ring Prince Charming carries is explored in "The Shepherd", and future events involving the ring are shown in "A Land Without Magic" and "Lady of the Lake".
- The wanted poster of Snow White is revisited in other Enchanted Forest flashback episodes such as "Child of the Moon" and "The Evil Queen".
- The hinted origins of Snow White's drastic change from pampered princess to on-the-run thief are shown in "The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter" "Red-Handed", "Child of the Moon" and "The Evil Queen".
- Regina's shirt, which Henry lets Emma "borrow", is the same shirt Regina wears in "That Still Small Voice", "The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter", "We Are Both" and "Into the Deep".
- Unbeknownst to David Nolan and Mary Margaret, this isn't the first time David has awoken from his coma. The first time it happened was in "Awake", but neither of them remember it due to both of them drinking a memory potion.
- Snow White's brief monologue in describing her turbulent relationship with the Evil Queen is expanded in the past flashbacks of "The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter", "The Stable Boy" and "The Evil Queen".
- Where and how dark Fairy Dust is created, is revealed in "Mother's Little Helper".
- Mary Margaret asks Emma how she fell into this job. The origin of this story is explained in "Firebird".
- Some of this episode's scenes are reused in "Snow Drifts" and "There's No Place Like Home", which center around Emma and Hook's accidental interference in the past with Snow White and Prince Charming's first meeting and efforts to set the timeline back on the right path. The title of "Snow Drifts" is a reference to this episode's title.
- How Prince Charming fights with some Black Knights, even though he has just become a prince from a shepherd, is explained in "White Out".
- Mary Margaret has a ceramic blue bird figurine on her nightstand. This is a reference to the blue birds in the Disney film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
- During his date with Mary Margaret, Dr. Whale misunderstands and asks, "Something about you wanting fifteen kids?" 15 is the third of the Lost numbers.
Fairytales and Folklore
- This episode features Snow White and Prince Charming from the Snow White fairytale as well as the daughter of King Midas from the Midas myth.
- When Henry opens the storybook, next to the illustration of Prince Charming, there is an excerpt from the story about Charming and Snow White trekking through the woods:
[image begins] Prince
[image begins]know who she
[image begins] agility, cun-
[image begins] woman. And
[image begins]ce the mud is
[image begins] on the idea
[image begins] Prince leaps
[image begins]e on the
[image begins]w he must
[image begins] his armor
[image begins] the dagger
[image begins]al for battle, are
[image begins] oot chase. And the thief is so
[image begins]ne seems to glide over the foliage and
[image begins]ppear into the thickets.
As the Prince moves deeper into the forest the trees
[image begins]ock out the sunlight. The woodland creatures whisper
[image begins]eir echoing songs. They are on her side, he thinks to
[image begins]mself. She is companions with the wild. Perhaps she's
[image begins]scendant of wolves. Of unwanted children abandoned in the
[image begins] only to be adopted by the most terrifying of beasts
[image begins]ised in the traditions of hunting raw
[image begins] This is who she could be he decided, and knew
with fear as she declared her evil [four illegible words; presumably "intentions to the king-"]
dom. "Soon, everything you love, everything [illegible/page ends; presumably "all of you"]
love, will be taken from you. [illegible/page ends; presumably "And from your"]
suffering, will rise my victory. The Queen [image ends]
to face Charming and Snow. I shall [illegible/page ends; presumably "destroy your happi-"]
ness if it is the last thing I do.
Having made her wows, the Queen [image ends]
to walk away. But Charming [image ends]
Queen's threat go unanswered [image ends]
threw it at the evil woman. [image ends]
her, however, the Queen [image ends]
smoke. The sword hit [image ends]
- In "Pilot", a page from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was seen in Henry's storybook. The opposite page contained an excerpt from the fairy tale of "The Golden Bird". In this episode, the excerpt from "The Golden Bird" has been replaced with a story about how Prince Charming set the trap for Snow White:
[image ends] [three illegible words], it was that she
[image ends] place inside and out... and he did not.
[illegible word] Prince would charge through the front door only to
discover that she had fled through a secret back door.
He would need a better plan. And as he gazed skyward,
the Prince noticed a sturdy tree limb extended directly
over the entrance to the hideaway. It gave him an idea.
Inside the Prince's travel pack was a number of
useful tools, from daggers and hooks to salves and oint-
ments to soothe a variety of burns and wounds. But the
pack also contained rope and netting for setting traps.
[image ends]nd if the Prince worked carefully and used his materials
[image ends]perly, he could construct a trap large enough to catch
[image ends] thief. The Prince worked quickly and quietly, think-
[image ends] entire time of the priceless ring that was so close
[image ends] yet so far out of reach. Finally, the trap was
[image ends] he swung the rope over the tree branch and
[image ends] trap high above the entrance to the thief's
[image ends] Then he tied an expert snare and laid it
[image ends] doorstep.
[image ends] allowed himself a tiny smile as he pictured
[image ends]uld look like swinging gently in the
[image ends]nd no honor, and woman or not, the
[image ends] giving her a much-deserved comeup-
[image ends] his sword and hid behind a nearby
- The text page about Snow White reads:
Snow White's hideaway contained all the comforts of home
but was by no means the castle she was accustomed to
as a child. The small coal hearth could heat the tree but
would scarcely have sufficed in keeping the mice warm at
home. Her table wasn't big enough to accommodate more
than one visitor, not that she ever had any, where her
father's table in the dining hall seated hundreds of royal
guests and kingdom officials. But despite the meek humble
nature of her forest hideaway Snow paused for a moment to
reflect om how she would miss it before continuing to pack
her belongings for a final time. Urgency welled inside her.
She laced her riding boots and stuffed an extra cloak into her
satchel. She swept the stack of gold coins resting on the
modest table into her sack. Her riding cloak fit snugly over
her shoulders and as she was about to leave the cave there was one
final item. Dangling from a hook rested a simple gold neck-
lace holding a glass bottle.
Snow grabbed the necklace and paused. Something about
this necklace [illegible]ed Snow to her very core. Her face
[two illegible words] and the sweet memories of her past life were
[five illegible words]d, replaced by something much darker.
[four illegible words] the memory down but it was impos-
[illegible/obscured]ing. Too dark. Too wracked with
[illegible/obscured]ppiness. The unmistakable face of the Evil
[image ends] Snow's memory. Finally, with a deep,
[image ends]Snow gingerly tied the bottle around her
neck. This was something special to her. It was both her
greatest hope and a reminder of her darkest days. An on
another day, we may have seen more clues to help discover
what this tiny bottle meant to Snow. But on this day, [image ends]
there was no time to linger. There was only time for one final [image ends]
sweep of her home, then a silent farewell before Snow exited
the tree trunk.
Snow put her hood on and tried to shake away the jittery
her trip down memory lane had left her with. But
for some reason, Snow's nerves weren't calming down.
Suddenly, Snow had a terrible realization... someone was
watching her! But by the time she felt the Prince's eyes on
her, it was too late. Snow planted her foot right in the
middle of the Prince's snare and with a shocking snap and a
blur of dizzying motion, Show found herself suspended high
in the air. Trapped like an animal.
As Snow swung in the air, her stomach sank with the
realization that she'd been tracked. The, as she watched
the Prince emerge from his hiding place, her eyes flashed and
her face went red. It was him?! How could she have let
herself be tracked by someone who had never even cooked a
a meal for himself a day his entire life? Snow saw the look
on his face and knew exactly what had driven him to find
her. It was the ring. It must have been even [image ends]
than she'd anticipated. And with just [image ends]
Snow knew exactly how bad a d[image ends]
- The jukebox sitting in the corner of Granny's Diner is an old Seeburg HF100R jukebox from 1953.
- The drawing on Snow White's wanted poster is copied from a promotional photo of Snow White for Season One.
- The white table lamps on either side of the sofa in the Mayor's office are Bronte Table Lamps from Robert Abbey. In the Season Six episode "Page 23", Regina and her serum counterpart knock over one of the lamps while they're dueling in Regina's office.
- Anglo-Saxon runes are etched into a wooden beam across the entrance to the Troll Bridge: ᚹᚳᛉᚳᚾᛁᚠᚱᛁᚳᛁ (note that some of the characters are mirror-inverted). However, they produce nothing but gibberish (WCXCNIFRICI) when translated.
- The floral dress Mary Margaret wears for her date with Dr. Whale is the same one young Emma wears at the Portland convenience store in "Tallahassee".
- The day after she read to David, Mary Margaret is wearing an Equipment Mina Cropped Lace Blouse in Bright White and a pair of Anthropologie Checked Crops (no longer available)'.
- The bandit outfit Snow White is wearing while on the run is the same outfit that Regina wears in the Season Four episodes "Operation Mongoose Part 1" and "Operation Mongoose Part 2". Snow White also wears this outfit in the Season One episodes "7:15 A.M.", "Heart of Darkness" and "An Apple Red as Blood", the Season Two episode "The Evil Queen" and the Season Three episodes "Snow Drifts" and "There's No Place Like Home".
- During the scene with the fallen trunk blocking the path of the horse carriage, a horse wrangler with a blue baseball cap is visible in the bottom's center left of the screen. It is noticeable when Abigail screams, "Please help me!".
- The date on the monitor over John Doe's hospital bed is "06 Nov 09", but "Selfless, Brave and True" establishes that the first episode of the show takes place in October 2011.
- As the trolls search through Prince Charming's belongings, one of them finds Snow White's wanted poster. A second later, the poster is pulled out of the bag a second time.
- Some scenes of the episode were filmed in the forests behind the Capilano University in North Vancouver.
- During Prince Charming and Princess Abigail's journey to the castle for their engagement ceremony, they travel on "the high road beyond Midas's castle". This indicates King Midas' castle is not too far off from the Royal Castle itself.
- The trolls turn into snails instead of cockroaches after being hit by fairy dust.
|French||"Le Pont des Trolls"||"The Troll Bridge"|
|German||"Der Fall Snow White"||"The Case of Snow White"|
|Hungarian||"Az első búcsú"||"The First Goodbye"|
|Italian||"La cosa giusta da fare"||"The Right Thing to Do"|
|Polish||"Zakochana Śnieżka"||"Snow White In Love"|
|Portuguese||"Neve e Paixão"||"Snow and Passion"|
|Spanish||"Nieve derretida"||"Melted snow"|