Once Upon a Time (2011–2018)
1 user 6 critic

The Snow Queen 

Emma captures the Snow Queen and interrogates her at the sheriff's station and Regina and Robin's relationship grows increasingly complex, as flashbacks detail information about the Snow Queen's life in Arendelle.


Billy Gierhart


Edward Kitsis (created by), Adam Horowitz (created by) | 2 more credits »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Ginnifer Goodwin ... Mary Margaret Blanchard
Jennifer Morrison ... Emma Swan
Lana Parrilla ... Regina Mills
Josh Dallas ... David Nolan
Emilie de Ravin ... Belle French
Colin O'Donoghue ... Captain Killian 'Hook' Jones
Jared Gilmore ... Henry Mills (as Jared S. Gilmore)
Michael Socha ... Will Scarlet
Robert Carlyle ... Mr. Gold / Rumplestiltskin
Sarah Bolger ... Princess Aurora
Georgina Haig ... Queen Elsa
Sean Maguire ... Robin Hood
Elizabeth Mitchell ... Ingrid
Sally Pressman ... Princess Helga
Jessy Schram ... Ashley Boyd


Emma captures the Snow Queen and interrogates her at the sheriff's station and Regina and Robin's relationship grows increasingly complex, as flashbacks detail information about the Snow Queen's life in Arendelle.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

9 November 2014 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Cinderella gave birth to her baby in season 1 (2011) and in 'The Snow Queen' (2014) her baby should be a toddler, not a baby as seen during their mommy and me session. Edit: This more than likely is her second child which would explain why she's the one leading the class. See more »


When seen from behind the ear, Hook's earring is clearly a screw-back clip-on, not pierced. See more »


Ingrid: You want, in short, what all villains want.
Mr. Gold: And what's that?
Ingrid: Everything. And I want to give it to you.
Mr. Gold: What makes you so generous?
Ingrid: What you want is out there. And everything that I want is in here. Do what you want with the rest of the world. Storybrooke will be mine.
See more »

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User Reviews

An icy exterior but also a warm heart
24 May 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

When 'Once Upon a Time' first started it was highly addictive and made the most of a truly great and creative premise. Really loved the idea of turning familiar fairy tales on their heads and putting own interpretations on them and the show early on clearly had clearly had a ball. Watched it without fail every time it came on and it was often a highlight of the week. Which was why it was sad when it ran out of ideas and lost its magic in the later seasons.

Season 4 had a lot to live up after Season 3 being as impressive as it was. At this early stage of the season, one can see a lot of promise, some may argue that it is capitalising on 'Frozen's' success but there is much more to the season than that. This promise was apparent from the get go, with a great season opener in "A Tale of Two Sisters". "White Out" and "Rocky Road" were good if not as good and "The Apprentice" and "Breaking Glass" were very good.

After a dip in quality with "Family Business", Season 4 and 'Once Upon a Time' overall show themselves to be back on form with "The Snow Queen", the best episode for me since "A Tale of Two Sisters". It's like the Snow Queen herself, underneath the icy exterior and demeanour is a very emotional and surprisingly complex heart. So far Season 4 has shown that the show is doing far more than capitalising on 'Frozen's' success or being a marketing ploy like it could have been.

Found in "Family Business" that Belle's development and the character herself took steps backwards. They are an improvement in "The Snow Queen", but she is still not very interesting compared to the most focused on characters and some of her dialogue is weak again.

However, there is so much to like about "The Snow Queen" and there is not an awful lot wrong. It has a good deal of momentum, the characters are still interesting and true to character, not behaving idiotically, it doesn't feel like filler, it has entertainment value, nice character moments that mean a lot and a lot of heart.

Especially good in "The Snow Queen" are the characterisation of The Snow Queen and her back-story. Already she is proving herself to be a complex character and much more than a standard villain that she easily could have been, and her back-story is heart-wrenching, makes sense, is crystal clear without being simplistic and makes her a character to sympathise with as well as getting chills by.

Regina's character continues to have complexity and nuance, her deepening relationship with Robin is both intriguing and entertaining and Emma is not passive and generally is getting stronger all the time.

All the performances are delightful, particularly from Jennifer Morrison, who (as well as the character of Emma) has come on a lot, Lana Parrilla, a highlight of the show from the get go and doesn't disappoint, and most notably a remarkably nuanced Elizabeth Mitchell. A lot happens but it doesn't feel over-stuffed or underdone.

Furthermore, "The Snow Queen" is a very handsomely mounted episode visually, the settings and costumes are both colourful and atmospheric, not too dark or garish and never cookie cutter. It is photographed beautifully too. The music is haunting, ethereal and cleverly used with a memorable theme tune.

Writing has the right balance of humour, pathos, mystery and intrigue, no corn or cheesiness here. This aspect has come on such a long way since when 'Once Upon a Time' first started, much more complexity and nuance.

Overall, great. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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