"Once Upon a Time" fans were shocked when "Frozen" snow queen Elsa showed up in the last seconds of the fairy tale show's season finale – they didn't even get a chance to recover from Regina (Lana Parrilla) having her heart broken yet again! Is this the end of Outlaw Queen?
Fans probably can't stand the long wait to see what happens next, but for right now they'll have to settle for the few details revealed in a May 12 report by TVLine. "Once Upon a Time" co-creators, Adam Horowitz and Eddy Kitsis, were kind enough to answer a few burning questions about all the two biggest surprises in the season finale.
Some fans believe that the character with icy powers might not be Elsa at all. It was pointed out that Princess Abigail (Anastasia Griffith) was wearing a blue dress that looked suspiciously like the "Frozen" heroine's gown, and others speculated that her character might be the White Witch from Narnia or even a resurrected Zelena (Rebecca Mader). However, Adam Horowitz made it clear that the woman unveiled at the end is actually Elsa.
"That is Elsa," Horowitz said. "We fell in love with the movie 'Frozen' when we saw it, my daughters are obsessed as is Eddy’s son… It is something that ever since we saw it would gnaw at us, 'Is there a way to fit it into our world?' And we cooked up a way to do it. We pitched the studio and the network and they were kind enough to say, 'Go do it.'"
It seems like Rumple (Robert Carlyle) thinks that Elsa is a force of evil – after all, she was locked up in his vault with the other magical items that he sees as being extremely dangerous. However, he wasn't always such a nice guy, so it's possible that Elsa is just another person that he's used and abused. As Kitsis pointed out, Elsa's "Frozen" character was just misunderstood. However, her "Once Upon a Time" counterpart might be out for revenge now that she's free. Maybe Mulan (Jamie Chung) will melt her icy heart – the warrior woman will return someday, and she needs a new love interest now that her last two are married to each other.
Elsa could be the sister of Glinda (Sunny Mabrey). The Oz witch does look a lot like the "Frozen" queen, and fans did see Glinda surrounded by ice and snow in "A Curious Thing." The producers confirmed that Zelena (Rebecca Mader) will be appearing in future episodes, so perhaps the snow queen has a connection to Oz and the Wicked Witch, and maybe fans will learn that connection in flashbacks.
During season 4 of "Once Upon a Time," Elsa might not be the powerful sorceress who runs away and shuts herself off from the rest of the world. Instead a brokenhearted Regina could choose to flee from her pain. She was furious and hurt that Emma (Jennifer Morrison) potentially ruined things with Robin Hood (Sean Maguire) by bringing Marian (Christie Laing) back to Storybrooke. Many fans were confused by the Marian storyline because Robin Hood previously said that his wife died of an illness after giving birth to their son Roland (Raphael Alejandro). However, the season finale seemed to imply that Marian was killed by the Evil Queen in the timeline that Emma and Hook (Colin O'Donoghue) altered. Robin made things even more confusing by telling Regina that his wife's death was his fault because he put her in harm's way.
Luckily, Kitsis and Horowitz said that they'll clear things up next season. Horowitz explained, "To clear it up: In Season 2 we saw Marian ill, which is why Robin was trying to steal the wand from Rumple. And then she was cured, and she went on to give birth to Roland. In Season 3, Robin Hood talks about how he lost his wife — not from the illness but a whole separate thing. So something clearly happened that we’ll explore next season, where they were separated and she died — and he certainly didn’t think the Evil Queen killed her. There’s a story there to be told."
Maybe Robin lied about his wife's illness killing her in "Quite a Common Fairy" for some reason, and maybe whatever he did to put her in harm's way will play a part in ruining his relationship with Marian. Or perhaps "Once" will introduce a "Final Destination" storyline in which Marian has to die – one of those creepy wraith things could get her out of Regina's way. Marian was also sick all the time, so her mysterious illness might take her life. Just don't give up on Outlaw Queen just yet.
Horowitz and Kitsis said that Regina is obviously upset by Marian's presence, but she's not going to revert back to being the Evil Queen who Oncers first met. "She has changed and evolved, and this doesn’t change that," Horowitz said. "What it does is it changes the way she reacts to this. That’s the drama for us — how does this 'new' Regina deal with this kind of adversity? We’re throwing a challenge in her way. This is not about her suddenly becoming that character we met three years ago."
Maybe the "new" Regina will take a page from Emma's playbook and flee Storybrooke to escape her heartache, leaving everyone else to deal with Elsa. The co-creators did say that the show will be visiting new realms during season 4, so perhaps Regina will decide to get away from it all by heading to the frozen land of Arendelle.
Do you think that the new Regina will run away from her problems during season 4, and do you think that Elsa will be truly evil or just misunderstood like the "Frozen" character? Stay tuned to see who gets cast as the snow queen (Kristen Bell would be an interesting choice, don't you think?). Oh, and one more question: Are you upset that "The Princess and the Frog" character Tiana hasn't been introduced yet?