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

Snow Drifts 

When Zelena's time portal re-opens and sends Emma and Hook into the Enchanted Forest of the past, their actions have dire consequences for the future.


Ron Underwood


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




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Ginnifer Goodwin ... Mary Margaret Blanchard
Jennifer Morrison ... Emma Swan
Lana Parrilla ... Regina Mills
Josh Dallas ... David Nolan / Prince Charming
Emilie de Ravin ... Belle French
Colin O'Donoghue ... Captain Killian 'Hook' Jones
Michael Raymond-James ... Neal Cassidy (credit only)
Jared Gilmore ... Henry Mills (as Jared S. Gilmore)
Robert Carlyle ... Mr. Gold / Rumplestiltskin
Tony Amendola ... Marco / Geppetto
Lee Arenberg ... Leroy
Beverley Elliott ... Granny Lucas / Granny
Chris Gauthier ... William Smee
Anastasia Griffith ... Kathryn Nolan / Princess Abigail
Rebecca Mader ... Zelena


In this the first part of a double episode, everyone in Storybrooke joins Mary Margaret and David as they prepare to celebrate the birth of Emma's brother but the time traveling portal that Zelena created before her demise comes to life, and takes Emma and Hook back to the Enchanted Forest before the events of the original curse. Written by Steven

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

11 May 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?


During Emma's flash back a child is handed a Mickey Mouse doll. This is the very first reference, physical or implied, to him in all 3 seasons despite the series being based on Disney characters. See more »


When Snow White climbs down the castle's wall during her escape, Emma and Hook are coming out of the turret's door twice. See more »


Emma Swan: Belle.
Belle: Sorry, do... do we know each other?
Emma Swan: Oh. Sorry, no. Um, Mister... Rumple... the Dark One, um, told me about you.
Belle: Did he?
Rumplestiltskin: No. Go away and, uh, read a book, or whatever it is you like to do. Come back and clean later.
Belle: You-you could ask nicely.
Rumplestiltskin: I could also turn you into a toad.
Emma Swan: [under her breath] It's a miracle you two fall for each other.
See more »


References Back to the Future (1985) See more »

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User Reviews

Quality hasn't drifted
26 April 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 3 was a very solid one, for me there wasn't a misfire and even the weakest episodes ("Lost Girl" and "The New Neverland" as far as the previous episodes go) were decent. "Going Home" and "A Curious Thing" were especially special of the numerous great episodes. "Snow Drifts" is for me one of the particularly brilliant episodes.

There is story advancing, lots of momentum and character progression, and everything concerning the past is highly intriguing, entertaining and emotionally impactful. A good deal happens but it doesn't feel too much. Any twists and revelations may not be as huge as other episodes, but "Snow Drifts" isn't devoid of them.

Particularly good here are how Rumplestiltskin is written, always one of my favourite 'Once Upon a Time' characters and "Snow Drifts" does nothing to change that, and Hook and Emma's witty but also beautiful chemistry. Found it easy to root for Emma, and didn't think her too passive or overwrought, she's written pretty poignantly.

Can't fault any of the acting, there is a lot of meat for everyone to sink their teeth into which all do with aplomb. Robert Carlyle and Jennifer Morrison in particular.

Furthermore, "Snow Drifts" 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 main theme.

Writing has the right balance of humour, pathos, mystery and intrigue.

Overall, wonderful. 10/10 Bethany Cox

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