‘Once Upon a Time’ Recap: Snow White’s Love Triangle Takes Center Stage

once upon a timeS1E13: While last week’s episode of Once Upon a Time centered around Mr. Gold’s complex fairytale past, this week’s story focused back on the on-going love triangle between Mary Margaret (Snow White), David (Prince James), and Kathryn (Princess Abigail). And though we know Mary Margaret and David are destined to be together, the writers are certainly keen to play with our emotions — bringing hope that the two star-crossed lovers will finally end up together before throwing yet another obstacle into their path. Is it frustrating? Of course. But if all the stories were tied up in a neat little bow at the end of each episode, then the show would lose the mystery and intrigue that we’ve grown to love.

And what about that mystery man who’s been mysteriously lurking around Storybrooke with Henry’s stolen book? Well, his intentions are still unknown, but we do find out his name (and no it’s not Grimm, like we thought). Plus, he’s taken a particular liking to Emma, however, it’s unclear if his feelings are true or if there’s another motive behind them. And let’s face it, when it comes to the characters on this show, anything is possible.

“I don’t want to marry you because my heart also belongs to another.” – Princess Abigail

Heartbroken from Snow White’s rejection, Prince James flees King George’s kingdom, to avoid marrying King Midas’ daughter, Princess Abigail. However, he is caught by Abigail herself, but instead of turning him in, she helps him escape. Like him, she loves another: a man named Frederick whom she was originally supposed to marry before things went terribly wrong. Frederick was accidentally turned to gold by her father’s curse while attempting to save his life during a carriage ambush. 

However, there’s legend of a lake with magical water that could possibly restore Abigail’s love to his human form. There’s only one problem: the water is guarded by a creature that drowns anyone who tries to take the water for themselves. No one has ever succeeded. Given that James has suffered through the pain of heartache, he vows to go and get the magical water to help free Frederick from his golden prison — that way at least one of them can have a happily ever after.


“I know it’s hard, but we have to tell her the truth about everything. About us.” – Mary Margaret

Back in Storybrooke, Mary Margaret pressures David to come clean about their secret relationship to Kathryn, especially after learning she wants to move to Boston with David to start law school. Mary Margaret knows that just coming clean about the whole thing would be the best approach, and David agrees. However, when time comes to actually tell Kathryn the truth, David chickens out and says he doesn’t want to be with her because he’s just not feeling a connection with her anymore. He makes no mention of his love for Mary Margaret and their on-going affair. Saddened by the news, Kathryn cries to Regina about the news, who “accidentally” lets it slip that Mary Margaret and David have been having secretly seeing each other for weeks now. She even has pictures to prove it. In a fit of rage, Kathryn goes to see Mary Margaret at school where she confronts her about hiding the affair. Of course, Mary Margaret is confused since she was under the impression David had been completely honest with Kathryn as to why he was ending things with her. When she discovers that wasn’t the case, she feels just as betrayed as Kathryn does and calls off their relationship, yet again. These two really can’t seem to catch a break.


“I can be anyone you want me to be.” – Siren

Back in the fairytale world, Prince James heads out in search of the magical lake, but while he’s retrieving the water, the creature appears to him — only it’s not a hideous creature like one might expect. It’s a beautiful woman – a siren – who lures people into the water by offering them the thing they most desire. At first, the Prince is completely unreceptive to the siren’s charms, but once she transforms into a vision of Snow White, his defenses break down and he begins to believe the illusion. He eventually snaps out of it in the middle of their kiss, but the damage is already done. Having dropped his sword into the lake, he’s utterly defenseless when the siren drags him to the bottom of the lake to drown. Vines reach up and prevent him from coming up for air, making things look pretty bleak for our beloved Prince. But luckily he finds a small sword at the last minute and stabs the siren with it, and cutting himself free.

Afterward, he brings the water back to Abigail and sure enough, its magic transforms her love back into a man. Upon removing his helmet, we discover that he’s a man Kathryn (Princess Abigail) bumped into in Storybrooke while on her way to yell at Mary Margaret. After seeing how happy the two of them are together, James sets off on a quest to find Snow White and fight for their love. On his journey, he even stumbles upon Red Riding Hood, who helps him realize that King George was behind it all and that he forced Snow to deny loving him. But before any plan can be made, King George and his soldiers appear and chase James and Red on horseback. Something tells me we’ve got a long way to go before Snow and James are ever going to be reunited.

“See, I have a policy. I don’t go out with guys who won’t tell me their name.” – Emma

Back in Storybrooke, we learn an interesting fact about why the mysterious writer stole Henry’s precious fairytale book. He’s actually adding pages to the book, even dying the new pages to match the color of the old pages, so no one would be able to tell the difference. Does this mean he’s the original writer of the book? One can only speculate. Perhaps he was sent to Storybrooke by outside force still not yet known to us. Either way, this writer definitely knows more than he’s letting on and has a bigger part to play in the grand scheme of things. Remember, Emma and this guy are the only two people who are able to come and go from Storybrooke, so that’s got to mean something as well.

He’s also taken a particular interest in Emma and asks her out for a drink, and she hesitantly accepts only after learning his name: August Wayne Booth. Oddly enough, he takes her to a watering hole that’s said to have magical powers (much like the lake in the fairytale world). Legend has it that whoever drinks the water from the well will have something returned to them that was once lost. Any guesses as to what Emma’s going to find? Henry’s book, of course! After their little rendezvous, Emma finds the book washed up right by her car and she quickly returns it to Henry. She shrugs the whole thing off as a coincidence, however, we know this August guy planted it there for her to find. So what does this mean? Given the fact that he’s contributing to the book and trying to help Emma believe in magical wishing wells, I’d say he’s rather determined to help Emma realize that everything Henry’s been saying is true — all the people in Storybrooke are real-life fairytale characters. This could seriously help bring Emma that much closer to breaking the Evil Queen’s spell and setting everyone free.

Meanwhile, Kathryn tells Regina that after some thinking, she realizes that her love for David wasn’t ever really real. David never looked at her the way he looks at Mary Margaret, so in an act of kindness she leaves them both a letter, telling them they should be with each other. However, she still plans to leave for Boston and to start a new life. But being that Regina is set on keeping Mary Margaret and David away from each other, she retrieves the letter before either of them can read it. And as for Kathryn, the last we see of her she is driving out of Storybrooke for good. However, her fairytale love, Frederick, happens to stumble across her crashed car on the side of the road — without her in it. Where she went and what happened to her are still unclear, but one thing’s for sure: Regina is definitely behind it. So much for friendship, huh? I guess we really shouldn’t be surprised that this happened. Like Henry always says — no one from the fairytale world is allowed to leave Storybrooke.

Are you happy Prince James is back to looking for Snow or are you getting sick of this whole back-and-forth between the two of them? What do you think happened to Kathryn? Do you think she’s dead? Sound off in the comments below or get at me on Twitter @KellyBean0415.