"The Snow Queen" is the seventh episode of Season Four of ABC's Once Upon a Time. It was written by Edward Kitsis & Adam Horowitz, and directed by Billy Gierhart. It is the seventy-third episode of the series overall, and premiered on November 9, 2014.
Emma captures the Snow Queen and interrogates her at the sheriff’s station. But the Snow Queen uses her prior knowledge of Emma to try to persuade her into thinking that they are more alike than she could possibly imagine. Regina and Robin Hood’s relationship grows increasingly complex as they struggle to find a way to save his dying wife, Emma begins to see what she missed out on by not growing up and being a family with Snow and Charming when she sees how involved Mary Margaret is in baby Neal’s life, and Henry begins his after school job in Gold’s shop while trying to help Regina find a clue to the identity of the author of the storybook. Meanwhile, in Arendelle of the past, we learn about the origin of the Snow Queen and her familial connection to Elsa and Anna as we see her discover her spectacular yet deadly ice powers.
- The title card features the Arendelle princesses' kite.
- The title of this episode was announced by Adam Horowitz via his Twitter account on September 13, 2014.
- After shooting the scenes with Emma and Ingrid at the sheriff's station, Jennifer Morrison had to use ice on her hand after slamming the table over and over.
- The Arendelle events take place many years before "A Tale of Two Sisters". (For more details, see the Arendelle timeline)
- The Enchanted Forest events take place after Geppetto's parents are turned into marionettes in "That Still Small Voice" (the marionettes can be seen in Rumplestiltskin's castle), and many years before Anna visits the Enchanted Forest in "White Out". (For more details, see the Enchanted Forest timeline)
- The Storybrooke events take place after "Family Business" and before "Smash the Mirror". (For more details, see the Land Without Magic timeline)
- Robin Hood stops Will from leaving Granny's by throwing a dart at the door to get his attention in the same way Graham did to Emma in "The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter".
- The handcuffs used to neutralize Ingrid's Ice Magic have the same design as the handcuffs used to neutralize Regina's powers in "Heart of Gold".
- The gloves given to Ingrid by Rumplestiltskin is the same pair of gloves worn by Elsa in "There's No Place Like Home", "A Tale of Two Sisters" and "Smash the Mirror".
- Emma learns how to control her magic in "Smash the Mirror".
- What the Snow Queen whispered to Mr. Gold is revealed in "Smash the Mirror".
- This episode features Elsa, the queen and the Duke of Weselton from Frozen as well as their homeland Arendelle.
- The Duke's dances in a similar manner as in the Frozen movie.
Fairytales and Folklore
- This episode is a rendition of "The Snow Queen" fairytale, focusing on the Snow Queen and Gerda. Also featured is Rumplestiltskin from the fairytale of the same name, Aurora from the fairytale "Sleeping Beauty" and Captain Hook from the "Peter Pan" story.
- According to Emma, the language which Belle translated for her is Elvish, a fictional language invented by J. R. R. Tolkien, author of The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings.
- Ashley says to Emma that if she can't get Neal to sleep, she can just tell him he's going to turn into a pumpkin by midnight; a reference to the Cinderella fairytale.
- The language in the spell book that Emma and Elsa are reading is not actually Elvish. It contains an excerpt from The Book of Lost Tales by J. R. R. Tolkien, written in Anglo-Saxon Futhorc Runes. The excerpt is from the chapter about "The Tale of Tinúviel". The text transliterates as:
Eriol told them of his first
wanderings about the western havens, of
the comrades he made and the
ports he knew, of how he was one time
wrecked upon far western islands and
there upon a lonely eyot found an an [sic]
ancient mariner who dwelt for ever solitary
in a cabin on the shore that he had fash
ioned [sic] of the timbers of his boat.
More wise was he, said Eriol, in all matters
of the sea than any other i have
met, and much of wizardry was there in
his lore. Strange things he told me, of
regions far beyond the western sea, of
the magic isles, and that most lonely
one that lies beyond. Once long ago he
said he had sighted it glimmering
afar off, and after had he sought it
many a day in vain.
- Much of the text is repeated on both pages.
- Excerpts from the fairy tale of "The Golden Bird" and the Charles Perrault version of "Cinderella" can be seen when Regina flips through the storybook.
- One of the illustrations is "The Meeting of Oberon and Titania", a 1905 artwork by the famous English book illustrator Arthur Rackham, depicting a scene from William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream.
- An illustration of Snow White and Prince Charming kissing, is accompanied by a scene from "Pilot":
Queen's Dark Knights, fighting
his way towards the wardrobe
Gepetto [sic] had fashioned, the one
that would carry Emma to
safety. In one hand, the Prince
held his sword, slicing [illegible adjective]
at his enemies, while in the
other he held his newborn baby girl, clinging to her for
Having vanquished the knights, Charming opened the
door to the magical dresser. Tears in his eyes, the Prince
placed Emma inside the small opening. "Find us," he
said, and kissed her on the forehead. Charming closed
the door to the dresser, knowing that this would be the
last time he would see his beloved baby for twenty-eight
years. But deep down, the Prince knew that this was the only
way. He had to let Emma go in order to save her. He
also knew that one day, Emma would return to save
As Charming closed up the dresser, he was [illegible word]
ambushed by two unforeseen Dark Knights. The Prince
tried to fight them off, but they proved too formidable
for him. One of the knights pierced Charming's stomach
with his sword, and the Prince fell to the ground, [illegible word]
death. The knights checked inside the wardrobe, only to
[three illegible words] [image ends]
happily ever after.
[illegible word]. He and the [image ends]
[illegible word] the [illegible word] [image ends]
the forest. [illegible word] [image ends]
was quick. Rather [image ends]
[illegible word] well, as [image ends]
[three illegible words] [image ends]
the figure, [illegible word] [image ends]
to the ground, the figure's [two illegible words] [image ends]
the most beautiful woman that Robin had ever [image ends]
The woman told Robin Hood that [image ends]
Marian. Her parents were so poor [image ends]
the evil Sheriff's taxes. Instead, [image ends]
they had of any value − her hand in [image ends]
begged Robin Hood. If her carriage [image ends]
Sheriff's castle by daybreak, her p[image ends]
the forfeit. [image ends]
"I shall ransom you", said Ro[image ends]
"Then the stories are true." [image ends]
say there is a thief in Nottingh[image ends]
Sheriff himself. Our people [image ends]
Sheriff takes from one pocket [image ends]
Men steal from the other. [image ends]
Robin Hood had never [image ends]
manner before, and for the [image ends]
- The label on Mr. Gold's furniture polish says Black Cat.
- The gazebo where Ingrid meets the Duke is a redressed version of the prop/set used for the gazebo where Cora finds Jonathan in "Bleeding Through", and Bo Peep's gazebo in "White Out". Most noticeably, a new roof was added for the episode.
- At the sheriff's station, when Emma gives Elsa the spell book, you can, for a brief second, see two papers on the desk. One of them contains a set of handwritten notes, and is dated August 19. 1994. The other is transcript of a police interrogation:
CYRIL KEMPQ Where do you live?
A I live in a homeless shelter.
Q Do you know this boy?
A Yes, I know him. I saw him playing
Q Did you take this boy with you?
A It was me that took him, yes. You should say that. It was me.
Q Took who?
A The boy in the park. I don't know why. Anger I suppose.
Q Where is the boy now?
A I don't know.
Q Where did you hide him?
A I don’t know. I don't know.
Q You said that you took the boy. Where did you take the boy?
A (Refuses to answer).
Q Cyril, where did you take this boy?
Q What's your name?
A Cyril Kemp
Q What do you do for a living Cyril?
A I am an unemployed math teacher. I receive a small disability
pension. It's because of this problem I have.
Q What problem do you have?
A Something in myself when I sleep. The dream, you know.
Q Do you have a criminal record?
[the rest of the text is a repeat of line 1 to 15]
- Emma is wearing a Maje Gachette Cardigan (no longer available).
- Ashley is wearing a Tonal Tides Cardigan and a Patchworked Silk Peasant Top from Anthropologie (both are no longer available). Her shoes are Cole Haan Gilmore Wedge Flats in Paloma Suede Perf (also no longer available).
- Mary Margaret is wearing a Pink Tartan One-Pocket Trompe L'Oeil Shirt (no longer available).
- Henry's tie is the same one that Mr. Gold was wearing in "The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter", at the sheriff's station in "Desperate Souls", in "Heart of Darkness", and when he is reunited with his "son" in "The Return".
- Regina is wearing a Women's Crux Leather-Sleeved Wool Blazer from Helmut Lang (no longer available). She wears the same blazer in "Smash the Mirror" and "Enter the Dragon".
- This blazer was also worn by Kate Beckett on the Castle episodes "The Way of the Ninja" and "Child's Play", and by the titular character of the 2014 neo-noir mystery comedy-drama film Veronica Mars.
- The blazer has also been worn in public by supermodel Heidi Klum in March 2014, and by singer Kelly Rowland at the Roc Nation Pre-Grammy Brunch in Los Angeles in 2013.
- Belle is wearing a Free People Geometric Precision Pencil Skirt and a RED Valentino Wool-Blend Coat (both are no longer available).
- The epaulettes on the Duke of Weselton's shoulders are the same design worn by Gerhart and Alphonse Frankenstein in the Season Two episode "In the Name of the Brother", the Royal Palace Guards of Oz in "Heart of Gold" and the Season Five episode "Our Decay", and Captain Nemo in the Season Six episodes "Dark Waters", "Page 23" and "A Wondrous Place".
- The Burnaby Mountain Park doubles as Arendelle for the opening scene with young Ingrid and her sisters.
- The scene where Emma is sitting alone in her car at the end of the episode was filmed in North Vancouver's Greenwood Park. According to a prop sign, the in-universe name of the area is Rowan Hill Park. However, the sign does not appear on-screen.
|Finnish||"Lumikuningatar"||"The Snow Queen"|
|French||"Le Pacte"||"The Pact"|
|German||"Die Tragödie der drei Schwestern"||"The Tragedy of the Three Sisters"|
|Italian||"La Regina delle Nevi"||"The Snow Queen"|
|Portuguese||"Rainha da Neve"||"Snow Queen"|