"Rocky Road" is the 69th episode of Once Upon a Time.
When an icy spell is cast on Marian, which will ultimately freeze her heart and kill her, the Storybrooke residents place the blame on Elsa. But unbeknownst to anyone, a mysterious woman who runs the town's ice cream parlor has the same powers as Elsa and is trying to frame her. Emma and David find former Merry Men member Will Scarlet rummaging through Robin Hood's tent, and Regina teams up with Henry to try and discover who the author of the fairytale book is, while Mary Margaret is having trouble balancing her duties as leader of Storybrooke and mother to young Prince Neal, and Hook begins to suspect that Mr. Gold is still in control of the dagger that calls upon him to be the Dark One. Meanwhile, in Arendelle of the past, Elsa and Kristoff set off to stop Hans from attempting to take control of the kingdom.
Previously on Once Upon a Time...
Emma meets Elsa inside of the ice wall, who reveals she is searching for her sister. ("White Out") Rumple confesses the the departed Neal that he has started his marriage to Belle with a lie, having given her a fake dagger. ("A Tale of Two Sisters") Robin Hood introduces Regina to his recently resurrected wife, Marian, who soon learns her husband is with the formerly Evil Queen. ("A Tale of Two Sisters") Grumpy, Granny, and Happy tell ask what Mary Margaret plans on doing about the power outage, as she is the new mayor. ("White Out") Elsa tries to melt her ice wall away, but realizes she is unable to. ("White Out") The Snow Queen leans against a wall in her ice cream parlor, but it starts to magically freeze. ("White Out")
A happy family.
On the streets of Storybrooke, Robin Hood walks with his wife, Marian, and son, Roland. "I know this town might seem strange at first," Robin says to his wife, "but you do get use to it." He adds on that Roland loves it there; he gets to see the boats at the harbor, eat at Granny's Diner, "and ice cream," Roland adds. "Ah, yes, how could we forget about ice cream," Robins exclaims. Roland asks if they could get some now, but Robin thinks Marian has seen enough of "strange things" for one day, and that they should get back to the camp. "Please mom, Regina let me," Roland pleads. The mention of her husband's former girlfriend puts Marian in an awkward position, but she tells him "sure," and they then head into the ice cream parlor, Any Given Sundae.
Tampering with ice cream? How dare ;o
"Rocky Road for the little man," the ice cream vendor says as she hands Roland his ice cream. This puts a smile on the little boy's face; he thanks the woman. "You're welcome," the vendor tells him, "And his dashing father," she says, handing Robin his Rocky Road ice cream, "And I don't believe I've met the beautiful mother," the vendor says to Marian. Robin introduces her to the vendor, who states that it is lovely to meet her, and shakes her hand. Having learned of what Marian has gone through, she offers Storybrooke's newest resident something on the house, and proceeds to ask what flavor she'd like. Marian doesn't know, however, as she has never had or even heard of ice cream before. "In our world, the flavor choices for ice were dirt and mood," Robin tells the vendor. The woman tells Marian that in this world, they've made some improvements. "Trust me, there is no problem that cannot be solved with a bit of ice cream," the vendor says as she scoops Marian a cone. However, as she turns around to put extra toppings on it, the vendor uses magic to put a mysterious spell on the ice cream. She proceeds to hand the cone to Marian. Robin thanks the vendor. "No, thank you," she says, "seeing a happy family like yours in here really warms my heart." Robin and Marian smile as they each take a bite of their ice cream. The two of them, plus Roland, leave. The vendor watches them.
ONCE UPON A TIME
Belle's one contribution to this episode.
"I'm sorry to disappoint you, but I've never seen her before in my life," Gold tells Emma, at his pawn shop. Belle, Hook, and Elsa watch a the heated confrontation between Gold and Emma takes place. The latter asks if Gold is telling the truth, then how did Elsa end up inside the urn that was locked in his vault of terror. Gold says that if Emma wants to know how Elsa ended up there, then to ask her herself, as she is standing right there. "She did," Elsa interrupts, "but I don't remember. Something happened to my memories." Gold points out that many objects fall into his position, referring to everything he has in his shop, and that he cannot know the history behind all of them. "Only if there is something in it for you, right mate?" Hook says. Gold replies that that may have been true once, but recently his life has been turned upside down. He lost his son, gained a wife, "So you might say, I've decided to turn over a new leaf." Emma reminds the Dark One of her "super power", she can tell if he is lying. Gold suggests a better idea, however, simply have Belle use the dagger to command the truth. Belle refuses, stating that Rumple does not have to do this. "No, no, Ms. Swan wants proof, and I'm happy to cooperate," Gold insists. Belle reluctantly agrees, grabbing the dagger and holding it up, "I command you, Dark One, to tell them the truth." Gold replies, "The truth is just as I said. I had no idea there was someone inside there, I know nothing about Elsa, or her sister, but I wish you the best of luck finding her." Elsa sighs, having gotten no where.
Bitch no, I'm duh queen.
In Arendelle of the past, Elsa walks around her castle nervously, wondering if anyone has heard signs from Anna, or if anyone has any clue where she could be. "Since you asked me ten seconds ago? Nope," Kristoff says, "She's gonna be fine. I've seen Anna fight wolves and snow monsters and that idiot from the Southern Isles." "Hans." "Whatever his name is. The point is, she can take care of herself, so stop worrying." Elsa tells her future brother-in-law that she can't just sit there, and that she is going after her. Kristoff reveals that Anna told him Elsa would try that, and she told him to stop her. "Well you can't, I'm the Queen," Elsa replies, grabbing her things to leave. "Which is exactly why you need to stay in Arendelle, as you told her," Kristoff says. Elsa stops and looks at the future Prince. Kristoff comments that Anna was right, logic and reason do work on Elsa, "Right now your kingdom needs you more than Anna." Elsa states that her sister knows her too well. Kristoff tells her that it's not hard to see: she's a softy beneath that "obey me, I'm the Queen" thing. Elsa asks why Kristoff's compliments are always so aggravating. "Well I start out that way, but you'll warm up to me," he replies. Elsa smirks.
Elsa tells Kristoff he ain't goin' no where.
A general bursts through the doors. He apologizes for barging in, but he has received news from one of his scouts. Elsa asks if they have found Anna. The general tells her no, but that they discovered something else on their search. He hands Elsa a letter; the Queen reads it, and her expression appears to be upset. "What does it say?" Kristoff asks. "There's an army massing in the Southern Mountains heading for Arendelle, led by Prince Hans." Kristoff appears worried, but assures Elsa that he knows every inch of those mountains and to let him sneak up there and see what the prince is up to. "I didn't realize the official Arendelle ice master and deliverer got a say in matters," the general remarks. "He doesn't," Elsa replies. She then tells Kristoff that he is not going anywhere, as it is too dangerous. "Ah, there you are warming up to me. You do care," Kristoff says. Elsa replies, "My sister wants a wedding, it's probably best the groom be alive." Kristoff says he'll be real careful, but Elsa won't hear of it, she tells him he is staying right there in the castle, "As you said, I am the Queen of Arendelle, so let me be Queen and handle it."
Back in present day Storybrooke, the door to the mayoral office opens, and in comes residents of the seaside town. Mary Margaret stands, Prince Neal in her arms, as she welcomes the residents, shaking some of their hands as they take their seat. David approaches his wife, shaking the hand of a resident as he does so, asking if she needs any help with the baby. "Oh no, I got it," Mary Margaret says, rocking the baby in her arms. David asks if she's sure she wants to run the first meeting while taking care of Neal. Mary Margaret nods, stating that she is a natural multi-tasker. "Well maybe, but you're juggling a lot right now," David says. Mary Margaret agrees, adding that she is gaining more respect for court jesters everyday. David asks one more time if his wife is sure she can handle this, but the new mayor reminds him that they took back a kingdom, she can do it.
Is she dead yet? Is this arc finished?
Mary Margaret and David head into the room where the town's residents are sat. The former welcomes everyone, going into a speech about how for so long, the room they are in was a place to be feared, but now she wants every citizen to feel welcomed and included. The camera pans over to Robin Hood and Marian, who smile at one another. "So if you could just refer to the meeting agenda that I printed," Mary Margaret says. The residents do so. Archie speaks up, asking for the mayor to explain what this ice wall is. "Oh, that's item four and we'll get to that in a minute." "I vote we skip items one, two, and three, show of hands," Leroy exclaims before raising his own. Everyone else agrees, wanting to know what is going on. "Fine, no, I can be flexible," Mary Margaret says, accepting the demands of her people. She assures them that the ice wall is nothing to worry about, but for the time being, it surrounds the entire town. This causes the town's residents to panic, "Are you serious?" Leroy shouts. Baby Neal starts crying; Mary Margaret assures them, once again, that there is nothing to worry about, as she tries to get Neal to be quiet. "We've been through all of this before. I'm not worried about the wall, I'm worried about who made it," Leroy exclaims. Mary Margaret looks at her agenda and states that item five: it was Elsa, a friend. Leroy states that she is the one who froze his truck; Granny adds on that she also made the snow monster that almost killed Marian. Marian speaks up, assuring that she is fine. David says that he has spoken to Elsa and they will clear all of this up, there will be no more danger of any kind. However, Marian begins losing hearing of everyone, her insides begin freezing, and she collapses, unconscious. Robin catches her, calling her name. He looks up, worriedly.
Operation Mongoose is in motion.
Nighttime at Granny's Diner, a woman is seen entering. The camera changes to a closeup of Henry drinking cocoa, topped with cinnamon. Comic books are dropped onto the bar he sits at - the camera pans up, revealing it to be Regina. "I didn't know which ones you were reading these days," she says as she sits down next to him. Henry thanks his mother, commenting that they are much better than algebra. He tells her she didn't have to do this, however. "But I wanted to," she says, "but don't get use to it." They both chuckle as they each pick up a comic book to look it. "Isn't it funny how these are just ink and paper, but everything in your storybook is real? Makes you wonder who wrote it, doesn't it?" Henry looks over at his mother, "The storybook? No one knows." Regina doesn't take this as an answer, however, stating that her son has read it cover to cover, surely there's a clue as to who wrote it. Henry, now thinking something's up, asks what his adoptive mother is up to. Regina sighs, "These stories about me in the book, I was written as a villain. And things never work out for the villains, so I wanna find out who wrote this book and make them - ask them - to write me a happy ending. Is that crazy?" Henry shakes his head, stating that this is the best idea she ever had. They just need to find the clues. "Wait, you'll help me?" Regina asks, surprised. "It'll be our own secret mission," Henry replies. Regina smiles, wondering if it's going to be like that "Operation Viper you had with Emma?" "Cobra," Henry corrects. He then begins thinking about names; Regina suggests Operation Mongoose. Henry agrees. The door to Granny's Diner opens, Robin Hood enters. He approaches Regina, asking if they can talk. The formerly Evil Queen hops out of her seat to speak with her true love. She asks what he is doing there, and he reveals something has happened to Marian. "I'm sorry, but I didn't know who else to turn to. I need your help," he says worriedly.
Robin Hood, Regina, and Henry enter the mayoral office, Robin asking how Marian is. "Not good," David replies, watching over Robin's wife, "she's getting colder." Robin hurries over to Marian who lies unconscious on the couch. Mary Margaret, who holds Neal, thanks the formerly Evil Queen for coming. "Don't thank me till I've done something," she says. Regina then notices a painting of birds on the wall; she asks whose idea it was to put that up. Mary Margaret confesses, saying that she thought she'd put her own personal touch on the office. "Well you've succeeded, hideously," Regina says, approaching Marian. "Is there anything you can do?" Robin asks. Regina seems unsure, commenting that this is strong magic. She says she can't stop it, but she might be able to slow it down.
True love's kiss... or nah.
Emma, Hook, and Elsa enter the office, the latter asks what has happened. "Perhaps you should ask your friend," Regina says, coldly, "after all it was her monster that attacked Marian." Hook defends the Ice Queen, who also speaks up, stating that this is not her magic, someone else had to have done this to Marian. "Oh, and we're suppose to trust you?" Regina asks the ice magician. "You can trust me. If she says it was someone else, then it was," Emma speaks up. Henry asks how they're going to break the spell. Elsa reveals the only way to break a freezing spell in the act of true love's kiss. "True love's kiss..." Regina utters. "Alright, then there's no time to lose," Robin says as he gets down on his knees. Regina looks away, not wanting to see her true love kiss someone else. Robin kisses Marian, but nothing happens. "What's wrong? Why isn't it working?" Robin asks. "I've seen this once before," David speaks up, "when Frederick was turned to gold." Emma asks who Frederick is; Henry replies "long story." "So the cold is acting as a barrier? Is there nothing we can do?" Robin asks. Regina states that every cure is different and that she needs more time to study this one, she say as she feels Marian's ice-cold face. "I'm gonna go find who did this before it happens again," Emma says, getting ready to leave the office. Regina comments that she hopes Emma is bringing backup. "What the hell is that suppose to mean?" the savior asks. Regina says that between the snow monster and ice fortress, the savior needs a lot of saving these days. Emma says that she will be fine and starts to head out the door. Hook stops her, however, saying that he should go with her. Emma refuses, telling him to take Elsa to the sheriff's station and to keep her out of sight. Hook tries to argue this, but Emma won't hear of it and leaves the office.
Kristoff disobeys his Queen.
It's nighttime in Arendelle of the past. Kristoff rides through the woods, quietly in the night, atop of his reindeer, Sven. "I am doing what Elsa said," Kristoff says to his reindeer. The animal grunts. "Well, the spirit of it anyway," the ice merchant corrects. Sven looks up at his owner, who finally breaks down, admitting that he is disobeying his queen, "but she'll be glad, Sven, you'll see. She just doesn't know it yet." Kristoff hops off of his reindeer, telling him to stay put. Kristoff makes his way through some bushes where he discovers a camp set up. "Wow, he wasn't exaggerating, he really does have twelve brothers," Kristoff says to himself.
Hans' plans are revealed.
Hans is seen sat by a fire, reading a scroll. "Hans," his older brother, Jurgen says, "more wood on the fire. It's freezing." Hans tells his brother that he's busy and to do it himself. Jurgen, feeling insulted, asks, "Now is that anyway to treat your big brother? Maybe I'll throw you on instead." Hans stands up, telling Jurgen that he'd be wise not to insult the future king of Arendelle. There is a moment of silence before all twelve brothers burst into laughter. Franz asks, "Don't you think it's a little early to be sizing the crown, Hans?" "Remember what happened the last time?" Jurgen adds on. Hans, clearly irritated, states that he remembers what happened the last time, but the last time he didn't have this. The young prince holds up the scroll he was looking at - a picture of an urn. The twelve brothers seem surprised.
Which Kristoff reports back to Elsa.
"Even if they had enough men to storm the castle, I'd freeze them before they reached the gates," Elsa says, from inside her castle. "It's posturing," the general says, "Prince Hans has seen what you can do." "And he knows how to defeat her," Kristoff says, entering the room. Elsa asks if he should be somewhere else, hinting at him to leave. Kristoff confesses to going to spy on Hans. This upsets the queen, who states that he disobeyed her. Kristoff tells Elsa to punish him after he tells her what he has found. The ice merchant goes on to tell that there is an urn, hidden in a cave in the North Valley that has the power to trap people like Elsa. "People like me?" the Ice Queen asks, confused. "With magic," Kristoff answers, "Hans wants to use it against you and then invade Arendelle." The general speaks up, asking that if this is what Hans truly has planned, then for the queen to let him bring the fight to the prince. Elsa won't hear of it, refusing to risk so many people's lives. She states there has to be a way to avoid war. Kristoff tells his future sister-in-law that he knows that valley better than Hans and his brothers do. He asks Elsa to let him take a few soldiers and he'll destroy the urn. "You can bring one," Elsa replies, "me."
Dat smile doh...
Back in present day Storybrooke, a group of people stand in a circle outside of Granny's Diner. "Elsa's the problem. Today it's Marian, tomorrow she could freeze the whole town." Leroy states. "As much as I like to move the hot cocoa," Granny comments, "someone has got to stop her." As Leroy and Granny start walking, Archie stops them, stating that they cannot just condemn the Ice Queen without all the facts. Leroy tells the therapist to look around, "Who else can turn people into popsicles?" he asks. "It's Elsa and we all know it. She has got to be stopped before she hurts someone else." As the group continue walking, they pass the ice cream parlor, Any Given Sundae. The ice cream vendor, the true culprit of Marian's predicament, is seen finishing writing something on her outside board. When hearing Leroy accusing Elsa of what has happened, she stands up, a wicked grin appearing on her face.
K, she did not seriously almost walk off a cliff, did she? :|
In Arendelle of the past, Elsa and Kristoff are seen trudging through the woods. The Ice Queen asks her soon-to-be brother-in-law if Hans said anything else about the urn. Kristoff replies that all the young prince said was it could trap people like Elsa and that it's really old. "Do you understand what that means?" the Ice Queen asks. She goes to explain that this means there must have been others like herself; she always thought she was alone. Kristoff argues that she isn't alone, she has Anna. "And I love her, but we're not the same," Elsa replies. "Yeah, I got that," Kristoff says sarcastically. Elsa tells him that he knows what she means; they're sisters and she loves her, but she has this magic. She then states that Kristoff should understand, as he grew up with rock trolls. "So?" Kristoff asks. Elsa replies, "You're human and they're, well, rocks." Kristoff chuckles, stating that they're family and just wanted what's best for him, "I guess I never have felt alone." Elsa says she wish she could say that, however, Kristoff grabs her arm, telling her to watch out as she almost walked off of a cliff. This scares the Ice Queen for a moment; Kristoff welcomes her to the North Valley. "The cave is about 100 feet straight down," the ice merchant says, pointing down below them. "Not a problem, would you prefer a slide or a spiral staircase?" Elsa asks, getting ready to use her magic. Kristoff stops her, however, warning her that Hans might see it and be right on top of them. Elsa asks what Kristoff has to suggest. The ice merchant pulls rope out of his bag, throwing it over the cliff, "Something a bit more rustic," he says.
Peek-a-boo, I see you.
Back in present day Storybrooke, Hook and Elsa hide in a narrow alley, the former trying to escort the latter to safety. Hook looks out and sees a black couple walk by, he tells Elsa to wait until they have gone. "Coast is clear," he says, starting to move fast. He looks back and sees the Ice Queen standing there; she tells the pirate that she is not going with him. This clearly annoys Hook, but Elsa states that there is someone out there with powers like her's and she needs to find out who. She can't just hide out in some sheriff's station. Hook tells Elsa that she's luck because they're not going to the sheriff's station, as it was in the other direction. Elsa asks what is in the direction they're going in, and Hook says "with any luck, danger." Hook begins walking, followed by an intrigued Elsa.
Meanwhile, in the woods, Emma and David approach a campsite. "Robin and Marian's tint is up ahead," David tells his daughter, "so what exactly are we looking for?" Emma replies that whoever cursed Marian has the same powers as Elsa, so maybe they left a trail. David suggests they split up and look for anything cold. The father and daughter part ways, David heading further into the woods, whilst Emma searches the campsite. The blonde hears noise coming from Robin and Marian's tint. She whips out her gun, aiming it at the tint. She tells whoever's in there to come out. A hand sticks out of the tint, opening it up, and a man steps out - Will Scarlet. He stands up and puts his hands in the air. Emma asks who he is, and why is he in that tint. "It depends who's asking," Will replies. "The sheriff's asking." "I never did like sheriffs much," Will also adds that Emma seems like a decent one, so he's sure she won't shoot him in the back. After a moment of silence, Will takes off running through the woods, Emma chasing after him. The sheriff soon trips over a log, however, resulting in Will getting away. Emma gets up to continue the chase; meanwhile Will keeps running, but is tackled to the ground by David.
Will meets OUaT people.
Emma catches back up to them; David pulls Will to his feet, asking where he was going. Emma explains how she fell, David says that it's alright, which is why they have two sheriffs. "Two sheriffs? Bloody hell, that's not even fair, is it?" Will exclaims. Emma asks who he is, so Will explains he was once one of the Merry Men until he and Robin Hood had a falling out. "So what were you doing in his tint?" Emma asks. Will reveals he heard what happened to Marian, but he knows something that might help. Emma asks what it is, Will states that he is a thief, is now and always will be. He goes to tell that while during the blackout, he was making his way through Main Street when he broke into the ice cream parlor and saw the strangest thing - the ice cream was still frozen - after no electricity for hours.
And more Sleeping Beauty.
At the mayoral mansion, Marian's body lies unconscious on the couch. Regina states that the ice is making its way to her heart, and that once it touches, she's dead. Robin Hood appears heartbroken, asking if there is nothing she can do. Regina sighs, revealing that there might be something, but Robin would have to trust her completely. "I do," Robin states. "Then I'll send Henry to my vault to get what I need," Regina replies. The head Merry Man asks Regina what she is going to do, to which the formerly Evil Queen replies, "Something drastic."
Hook blackmails Gold.
The camera zooms in on Mr. Gold examining something under a microscope. The door to his pawn shop opens, but the Dark One apologizes, stating that he is quite busy today. "And here I was hoping for a warm hello from the newly reformed Mr. Gold," Hook says, entering the shop, followed by Elsa. Gold reminds the pirate that this is still a place of business, and unless he has something to offer, Gold can be of no help. "Well as a matter of fact, I do have something to offer you," Hook reveals, "my silence." Gold looks up, a bit worried. Hook goes on to explain that he knows that the dagger Gold gave Belle is a fake. "Is that right?" Gold asks. Hook nods, stating that he has spent a long time hunting the Dark One, he knows him better than most, and he would never let someone have power over him - not even Belle. "And you expect her to believe you without a shred of proof?" Gold asks the pirate. "Well I could ask her to summon you with the dagger, and when it does not work, proof." Gold comments that that is a very dangerous insinuation. "So we have a deal?" Hook asks. Gold smiles, "I do hope Ms. Swan's worth it." Hook calls Elsa over, letting her know that Gold has agreed to help. The Ice Queen holds out a strand of hair to the Dark One, telling him that it is Marian's and someone has cast a curse on her; they need to know who it was. Gold takes the hair and tells Elsa, "Well, you're in luck. Magic can change form, but never be destroyed." Gold changes the hair back to its natural state - snowflakes. The magic is similar to Elsa's but still not quite the same. "Much like a snowflake, each person's magic is unique," Gold says. "Poetic, now how does that help us?" Hook asks. Gold reveals that magic seeks out the creator of it, so if he sets it free, it'll find its way home. Gold blows the magical snowflakes; Elsa and Hook watch.
Archie tells Mary Margaret it's okay to let it go sometimes.
Mary Margaret opens the trunk to her car, holding Prince Neal in her arms. She has trouble getting the stroller into the trunk, having to only use one hand. Archie approaches her, commenting on her predicament. The new mayor claims to be alright, just having a little trouble with the stroller. She finally gets it to collapse; Archie chuckles, commenting that he cannot believe how complicated things must be for her, with having taken over as mayor and raising a newborn, "It's just a lot to take on, even for Snow White." Mary Margaret states that she can handle it, as they say children grow up so fast, and she doesn't want to miss a second of it. "Yeah, because you missed it with Emma," Archie replies. An offended Mary Margaret recalls that she doesn't remember scheduling a session. Archie apologizes, exclaiming that he can't help himself, but Mary Margaret does not need to spend all of her time with Neal. If she lets him go for even a second, the baby will be just fine, "and you'll be even better. I promise." Archie walks away; Mary Margaret watches him, thinking about what he just said. Neal begins to cry.
Emma and David make an icy discovery.
Emma looks through the blinds at the closed ice cream parlor, Any Given Sundae. "I don't know, it looks pretty normal in there," she exclaims, looking up at Will. "It was bleeding cold in there, I'm tellin' ya'," the thief replies. Emma argues that maybe it's because it sells ice cream. "During the black out?" "Says the guy who's trying to avoid jail?" Will argues that he may be a thief, but he is no liar, and he can "bloody well" prove it. The thief kneels town and begins picking the lock. "Really, you think breaking in again is gonna help your case?" David asks. Will goes on about how it takes steadiness and concentration, but Emma gets in the way, picking the lock faster, stating that shes got it. "You do?" David asks surprised. Emma replies, "Neal taught me a few things." She opens the parlor door and enters, followed by David and Will. The trio look around; David says it doesn't look like there's anything, but is interrupted by his daughter who tells him that there's no cooling system, thus proving Will to be right. The thief tells the sheriff to check the back and it'll prove everything. Emma and David enter the back room and see it is frozen with ice. "Well look at that," Emma exclaims. "It looks like we owe Will an apology," David adds on. However, they hear the door to the parlor open. They head out and see Will has escaped and has taken the money from the cash register with him. Emma prepares to go after him, but David stops her, reminding her that he isn't the most important problem at the moment. "So I just let him go." "Then you'll find him." "Will I?" the savior asks. David asks what is going on; she doesn't reply. "Emma, I'm your father, talk to me." Emma confesses that it's Regina, she's right, "it's like I can't save a cat from a tree right now, it's like I'm the anti-savior." David tells her that she is being too hard on herself right now, they all have bad days. He goes on to say that she cannot lose fate right now. The camera zooms out to show plastic snowflakes dangling from the ceiling.
Hook and Elsa chat.
Real snowflakes fly through the woods, leading Hook and Elsa to the magician who formed them. Hook uses his hook to carve an X onto a tree. Elsa asks what he is doing, to which Hook replies to is leaving a trail, commenting that is more accustomed to out running bad weather than following it. "Snow isn't bad," Elsa replies, "and we're following magic." "I try to outrun that too." Elsa chuckles. Hook asks what's so funny, so Elsa says that Emma has magic and he clearly does not want to outrun her. "More like the other way around," the pirate replies. "Maybe she feels the way about pirates as you do about magic," the Ice Queen comments. Hook states that he has worked to change, though being a fan of pirates is not necessarily a bad thing, in particularly a charming one, "like me-self." "I think your self-appreciation has blinded you to a simple fact, this isn't about you, it's about her." "Is that right? A few short days and you know Emma so well?" Hook asks the Ice Queen. Elsa states that they're a lot a like. When you have the weight of the world on your shoulders it's hard to let people in, to trust them, even when they want what's best for you. Hook and Elsa continue walking.
Elsa has a decision to make.
In Arendelle of the past, Elsa and Kristoff walk through the cave, the latter holding a torch to guide them. "There's the urn," Kristoff says, pointing to a silver urn that rests on a ledge in a rock. "See? I told you we could beat Hans the old fashioned way," the ice merchant says. Elsa appears impressed; Kristoff adds on, "Now let's destroy it." "Do you mind if I use my magic now, or would you rather hack away at it with your ice ax?" Elsa replies. Kristoff jokingly says his hacking arm is tired, stating that the Ice Queen should do the honors. Elsa smiles, thanking him. Elsa goes and picks up the urn; Kristoff drops his torch into the torch holder. Elsa examines the urn when magical writing appears in a language unknown. "I think these are ancient Fotoc ruins," Elsa exclaims, "I can't read it. What do you think it says?" she asks, holding the urn out to Kristoff. He doesn't take it, however, saying, "Uhh, dangerous urn, keep away. Just a guess." He then asks if they can just destroy it and get out of there already. "What if it can tell me there are others like me. I'm the only one in my family born with magic, I'd like to know why." "Elsa, I know you want answers, but right now we can get rid of that urn for your own good, and Arendelle's." Elsa ignores him, stating that she wants to know what it says and she may never get another chance. "Elsa, you have to trust me on this," Kristoff says, trying to take the urn, but Elsa refuses. However, footsteps are heard walking through the cave. "Someone's coming," Kristoff exclaims, "Hans." Elsa and Kristoff turn and see Hans entering, followed by three of his brothers. "The urn," Hans demands, "get it." The three older brothers draw their swords to attack. Elsa uses her magic, however, to shoot ice at two of them - Franz and Jurgen - stopping them from nearing her. A third brother pulls out his sword to attack, but Kristoff defends the Queen. Kristoff kicks the brother to the ground, but Hans points his sword at the back of Kristoff's neck. "Enough witch, unless you want your sister to be a widow," the young prince threatens. Kristoff's smart-mouth replies that technically Anna wouldn't be a widow, as they are not married yet. This annoys Hans, who pokes Kristoff's neck, causing a stinging pain. "Hand it over," Hans says to Elsa, referring to the urn, "now." Elsa doesn't know what to do.
Hook dials the "Emma" button.
In present day Storybrooke, the snowflakes continue leading Hook and Elsa through the woods. "I'd say we're on the right track," the pirate says, when noticing ice on trees and the ground; Elsa agrees. They see a figure walking through the woods. "There she is," Elsa exclaims. Hook pulls the Ice Queen down to the ground with him, hiding from the mysterious snow magician. Elsa is amazed by her as she uses her powers. Hook pulls out his phone, resulting in the Ice Queen asking what it is. "It's a device for... talking. I don't bloody know, I press the Emma button and she answers usually." Hook calls Emma, but after a few seconds of waiting, it goes to voicemail. Hook leaves a message, telling Emma that they found the person who froze Marian and to get to the west edge of the woods immediately. He hangs up, but sees Elsa looking over the log. He pulls her down, asking what she thinks she's doing. Elsa apologizes, but she has never seen someone like herself before. "She doesn't look evil," the Ice Queen adds on. Hook reminds her that looks can be deceiving, "so let's just stay out of sight. I have a rather fondness of ice burgs, but what rather avoid being turned into one." Hook and Elsa continue watching the mysterious ice cream vendor.
The Snow Queen works her magic.
Meanwhile, in Arendelle of the past, Elsa has yet to turn over the urn to Hans, who has a sword pointed at the back of Kristoff's neck. "This is the man she is to marry?" Hans asks with a chuckle. Kristoff replies that at least her never tried to kill her. Hans defends himself, "I didn't try to kill her, I left her to die." "Important distinction," Kristoff sarcastically replies. Hans says that he'd be happy to kill him, however. Elsa pleads for him not to hurt him, so Hans demands the urn. "Elsa, don't. It doesn't matter what happens to me, just don't let him have it," Kristoff says. Hans prepares to kill Kristoff, but Elsa stops him, agreeing to give him the urn in return for Kristoff's freedom. Elsa apologizes to Kristoff for not listening to him and destroying it when she had the chance. Kristoff reminds Elsa that if Hans has the urn and traps the Ice Queen then Arendelle is doomed. "No, it's isn't. I didn't trust you before which is why I have to trust you now. You have to find Anna and save Arendelle," Elsa says. Kristoff sighs; Hans motions for one of his brothers to grab Kristoff while making the exchange with Elsa, who frees a trapped Franz and Jurgen. Hans takes the urn, a wicked smile appears on his face. Hans asks his brothers if they want to make fun of him now. "I showed them, now I'll show you," the evil prince says, turning back to Elsa, "You don't belong in this world, you don't belong anywhere. Which is why I'm going to put you somewhere, where it's like you don't even exist." Elsa's eyes begin to water; Kristoff watches in fear. Hans opens the urn, dumping out the liquid that was inside. As it makes its way to Elsa's feet, Hans goes to say the citizens won't care when he takes over Arendelle, as they'll finally have a real ruler. Elsa watches the liquid splash. "Not a monster like you," Hans adds on; Elsa is in tears. Everyone begins to notice the liquid from the urn, however, thus making everyone nervous. It begins taking a human form. Once the transformation is complete, the liquid from the urn is revealed to be none other than the Snow Queen. "No one thought to check if it was empty?" Kristoff asks. Hans asks what's going on, and who is the woman. "From what I just heard, I think you would call me a monster," the Snow Queen replies before using her magic to freeze Hans. The other three princes run away, horrified. "You, you saved me," Elsa says to the Snow Queen. "I know from experience, no one should be trapped in that urn," she replies, "especially someone as special as you." The Snow Queen then notices Kristoff, asking who he is. Elsa assures the woman that it's okay, as he is her friend. Kristoff smiles.
Hook and Elsa continue watching the Snow Queen in present day Storybrooke. Hook exclaims that they've waited long enough and that it's time to find Emma. As they get up, however, Hook's feet are frozen to the ground. "I'm sorry, but I'm afraid I can't let you leave," the Snow Queen says, standing behind them, holding her hand out, prepared to use magic once again. Elsa demands the Snow Queen let go of Hook immediately, but the snow magician refuses, "Not when you and I have so much catching up to do, my sweet Elsa." "Catching up? You know her?" Hook asks, upset. Elsa states that she has never seen her before, but the Snow Queen corrects that she has simply forgotten. Elsa doesn't believe she could have possibly forgotten someone like her, but the Snow Queen tells her that it was the magic of the rock trolls, "They pull memories. They pulled quite a number on you, I'm afraid." Elsa asks why the rock trolls would do that to her. "For the same reason they did it to your sister, Anna. Some memories are too painful." "You know Anna?" the Ice Queen asks, surprised, "What happened to her." "The same thing that happens to every ordinary person, eventually they grow to fear us." The Snow Queen then reveals that it is Anna who go her trapped in that urn, but Elsa doesn't believe her, "You're lying." "Am I? Look at the people in this town. They're ready to burn you with a steak." "Because of what you did to them." "You mean that woman, Marian? Oh, it was an accident," the Snow Queen lies. Elsa sees through this, stating that she did it so everyone would blame her. The Ice Queen then asks why. "I was trying to teach you a lesson," the Snow Queen replies, approaching Hook, "Eventually, everyone turns on people like us, even friends, even family, they're just waiting for a reason," and with that, the Snow Queen causes ice chunks to form over Hook, aiming towards him. Elsa asks what she's doing, as she tries to use her magic to stop this. "Don't worry, I've neutralized your magic. When your friend is found, they'll think you're responsible, and they'll turn on you. They'll treat you as the monster they truly see you as, and you'll know that I'm right."
The savior has come to save the day.
As the Snow Queen gets ready to dispose of Hook, she is interrupted by Emma and David's arrival. "Hey, Dairy Queen," the savior shouts. The Snow Queen appears surprised, uttering "Emma." Emma asks if they know each other, to which the Snow Queen replies "of course not," however she still appears to be surprised, "your reputation proceeds you. You really think your magic is a match for mine?" she asks. "There's only one way to find out," Emma exclaims before using her magic to knock the Snow Queen to the ground. David rushes over towards Hook and begins using a knife to punch out the ice holding the pirate down. The ice chunks above them begin to lower, however. The Snow Queen looks up, and makes them drop, but Emma uses her magic to throw David and Hook into the air and to safety. Emma asks if they're okay, to which David replies that they're fine. David then asks, "Where is she?" when realizing she's gone. Elsa turns around, not seeing the Snow Queen in site. "She's gone," Emma exclaims, out of breath.
The Snow Queen assures Elsa that they'll find Anna together.
"Have you ever made a snowman come to life?" Elsa asks the Snow Queen excitedly as they walk through the Ice Queen's castle. "It's the best," the Snow Queen replies before asking if Elsa has tried building an ice palace yet. "Yes, you have to see it sometime," the Ice Queen responds. The two women chuckle; the Snow Queen looks around the room, a depressed emotion appears on her face. She stares at a painting on the wall, something Elsa notices. She tells the Snow Queen that it's her favorite painting of her parents, "I feel like it gets my mother's smile just right." The Snow Queen agrees, leading Elsa to asking if she knew her. "Yes... she's my sister," the Snow Queen confesses, adding on that once learning Elsa was queen, she wanted to wait for the right moment to tell her niece the truth. She asks if she overwhelmed the Ice Queen. Elsa states that she didn't, before changing her mind and saying that she did a bit, actually, "Mother never told me she had a sister." The Snow Queen appears hurt before telling her niece that she's sure her sister was just trying to spare her a very painful history, "You see, I was trapped in that urn by people who fear magic liked ours, but that was a long time ago and now I cannot wait to see my beloved sister again. Where is she?" This leads Elsa to confessing that the former Queen of Arendelle was lost at sea. "My poor, darling girl. You must have felt so lonely when she died," the Snow Queen replies. Elsa says that now it's just her and her sister, Anna, but now she's missing and she fears something has happened to her. "We'll find her, together," the Snow Queen promises, "That's what family is for."
Emma worries that she may have a connection to the Snow Queen... if they're related then I quit.
Back in present day Storybrooke, Elsa sits in the dark, outside, depressed. Meanwhile, Emma, David, and Hook converse behind her, Emma stating that there is no sign of the Snow Queen anywhere, not even tracks. David notices there is something wrong with his daughter. He tells her that they'll find the Snow Queen and for Emma not to let Regina shake her confidence. "It's not that, it's this Snow Queen. It's not like she just knew Elsa, she knew me too." David reminds her that she is the sheriff, and the savior, and royalty, so pretty much everyone in Storybrooke knows who she is. Emma doesn't buy it, "There's something more," she exclaims, "it's like when she said my name. I, I don't know, it sounded familiar." David assures her they'll figure it out, but for today, she did good. She stopped the Snow Queen, and that is pretty impressive. Hook suggests they keep searching, hopefully find the villain's lair. "So you can almost get yourself killed again?" Emma asks the pirate, "That's exactly why I told you to go to the sheriff's station." Emma walks over towards Elsa, asking how she's doing. "That woman was lying about my sister. She would never trap me in that urn," the Ice Queen replies, "She was lying about the past. I just wish I knew the truth." Emma explains that she's learned the past has a way of revealing itself, so she assures Elsa to just give it time, "We're gonna find her, Elsa. Your sister, Anna, and this Snow Queen. My gut tells me you two are just pawns and this is about something more." Elsa wonders what makes Emma say that. "I brought you to this world, but it was an accident. The Snow Queen - she was already here. I'm starting to think it wasn't just some curse that brought her to Storybrooke..."
And even more Sleeping Beauty.
Marian's frozen corpse continues to lie on the couch in the mayoral office. Regina looks over the body as Robin Hood walks through the door, "Roland's with Little John now," he tells his true love, "I wish I could've told him I did everything I could." Regina sighs before telling Robin that even true love's kiss cannot solve every problem. "There's a reason that kiss didn't work," Robin confesses, "it's not what everyone thinks. I'm in love with someone else." A shocked expression appears on Regina's face before a sincere smile, "You are?" she asks. Robin nods, confirming this. Regina understands, however, that Robin still has to go back to Marian, after all, she is his wife. Robin apologizes for dragging Regina into this. Before Regina can reply, footsteps are heard from outside, and Henry enters the room exclaiming, "You really need to clean that vault out, but I found it," before taking off his backpack to retrieve something. Regina asks if Robin is still sure he wants her to do this; the Merry Man nods affirmatively. Regina then proceeds to plunge her hand into Marian's chest and forcefully rip out her heart. The formerly Evil Queen states that while the ice hasn't touched Marian's heart yet, they can keep her alive. As Henry holds out a box for Regina to put the heart in, Robin asks if his wife will simply remain in this state - alive, but frozen. Regina nods, "Until we find a cure. And I will find one." Robin appears unsure.
Summa dat Captain Swan lovin'.
At Granny's Diner, Hook sits at a table outside, having a drink. Emma exits the building and Hook calls out for her, begging him not to let a man drink alone. Emma tells him that she is not in the mood, not for a drink or a man, simply rushing past him. Hook jumps out of his seat to chase after her, apologizing for not listening to her that day. Hook tells her that he knows she feels like she has the weight of the world on her shoulders, but at some point she has to trust him. He uses his hook to grab her arm, stopping her from getting away. "That's what you think this is about? That I don't trust you?" Emma asks. Hooks asks if that's not what it's about, to which Emma replies of course she trusts him. "Then why do you keep pulling away from me?" the pirate asks. "Because everyone I've ever been with is dead." Hook doesn't know how to respond. "Neal, Graham, even Walsh," Emma continues, "I lost everyone. I, I can't lose you too." Hook assures Emma that she doesn't have to worry about him, for if there's one thing he's good at, it's surviving. He then pulls Emma in close, passionately kissing her in the middle of the street.
Meanwhile, deep in the woods of Storybrooke, the Snow Queen walks alone. She comes to an open area, appearing to be in search of someone. The camera reveals Mr. Gold to be sitting on a rock behind her. The Snow Queen turns around, having felt his presence. "Don't worry, dearie," Gold assures, "it's only me." He apologizes for things not working out the way she wanted. "They will," the Snow Queen states. "We shall see," Gold replies before standing to his feet, "And uh, did Ms. Swan remember you?" he asks. The Snow Queen answers negatively, to which the Dark One comments that that is good for her, because it could happen, "And you wouldn't want that now, would you?" The Snow Queen doesn't respond. "Are you sure you don't want my help?" Gold asks. "When I'm ready to make a deal, I'll come to you," the Snow Queen makes clear. The Dark One replies, "A moment I eagerly await." He then adds on that she should find some shelter, "it's getting quite frosty," and with that he walks away; the Snow Queen grins.
Rumple explains how magic works.
Elsa leads a group out to the barn of Zelena's old farmhouse, sharing the story of how she was released from the magic urn. She points to the center of the compass-like carvings made by the Wicked Witch during her reign of terror, and states that she came out over there, and once free, she simply destroyed her old prison. (See "There's No Place Like Home") "Well we should see about that," Rumplestiltskin exclaims, being one amongst the group Elsa has brought with her. He turns to Belle, asking to borrow the dagger, and so the beauty complies, removing it from her purse and hands it to her new husband. Hook notices this and eyes the couple with suspicion, while the Dark One carries on that the funny thing about magic is that it can never be destroyed completely. As he kneels down and uses the dagger to scoop up the dust remains of the urn, putting them into a small vial, he states that it simply lives on in other forms; "Magic survives," he finishes, handing the dagger back to Belle.
Emma tries giving Elsa hope.
"As what, dirt?" Emma asks, but Rumple waves his hand over the vial of the urn's remains, magically making it appear more clear. He tells the Savior that it's much more than dirt, but that the urn could neutralize any magic placed inside of it, which is why Elsa remained trapped. And even though the urn itself appears destroyed, the dust from it contains the very same power, only weakened form. The Dark One warns Elsa that the next time she wishes to destroy something like the urn then for her to be more careful, because one sprinkle of the dust and all her magic would temporarily vanish; "Good thing I have it safe and sound." He then turns to Belle, asking if she's ready, to which she confirms that she is. The couple then head off, with Hook silently turning back to watch, his suspicions having risen. Meanwhile, Elsa is distraught, for they've gained no information on how she ended up inside the urn or where Anna is. "No, we're just starting," Emma assures, "I promise you, we're going to find your sister." Elsa doesn't appear entirely sure though.
- The title card of this episode features the ice cream parlor, Any Given Sundae, amidst a snowstorm.
- The title of this episode was revealed by executive producer/co-creator Adam Horowitz, via his Twitter account, on July 30, 2014.
This outing scored a 2.7/7 among 18-49s with 7.92 million viewers tuning in, a 18% drop from the previous episode.
- In a review from Entertainment Weekly, Hilary Busis mentioned several good points about this episode, including this one: "And so Once continues to play its favorite game: Families Are Complicated, Y'all! A new baddie who's secretly related to one of our heroes is hardly uncharted territory, but at least Mitchell's presence is livening up the Frozen arc. And while I'm still not sure that Once has done enough to justify devoting this much time to characters from a movie that was released less than a year ago, season 4's third episode did at least have a little more time to spare for the folks who have been around since the pre-"Let It Go" days. (Though we still don't know what the deal is with that damn Fantasia hat.)"
- Amy Ratcliffe of IGN rated the episode 7.5 out of 10, saying "Tonight's Once had entertaining points and featured an intriguing entrance for the Snow Queen. She's a quieter sort of villain, and that's a nice change. We inched closer to finding out how Elsa got trapped in the urn and where Anna is, but the episode fell flat in a few places because characters didn't act like themselves."
- TV Fanatic gave the episode 4.6 out of 5 stars.
Gallery of photographic stills released to promote the episode.
- ↑ Adam Horowitz tweet.
- ↑ "Sunday Final Ratings: 'Once Upon A Time', 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' & 'Resurrection' Adjusted Up; 'Madam Secretary' Adjusted Down", by Sara Bibel, TV By the Numbers, October 14, 2014.
- ↑ "Once Upon a Time recap: 'Rocky Road'" from Entertainment Weekly (October 12, 2014)
- ↑ "Once Upon a Time: "Rocky Road" Review", by Amy Ratcliffe, 'IGN, October 12, 2014.
- ↑ Once Upon a Time Season 4 Episode 3 Review: Rocky Road from TV Fanatic (October 12, 2014)