Once Upon A Time had a stellar season three finale, in which [spoiler alert] everything turned out nicely for everyone—except for Evil Queen Regina, unlucky in love yet again. But the episode’s final moments offered a surprising Terminator nod, as a mysterious urn brought back from the Enchanted Forest poured out a bright blue liquid that transformed into the newest resident of Storybrooke. Viewers saw the back of a blonde woman in a shimmering blue gown, who then stripped off her long gloves, shot out some icy curlicues from her fingers, and strutted off, leaving a trail of frost behind her. Those who have been paying attention to pop culture this past year immediately identified this new character as Elsa, the Snow Queen from Disney’s mega-hit Frozen, which the show quickly confirmed on Twitter.
Elsa’s arrival is not all that surprising, seeing as Disney owns ABC, Frozen recently became the most successful animated film in history, and OUAT has brought in the Disney movie versions of classic Hans Christian Andersen characters before (such as The Little Mermaid’s Ariel). In an Entertainment Weekly interview with creators Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz, the duo confirmed Elsa also isn’t the only Frozen character on the horizon. Horowitz commented, “We’d be disappointed if Elsa was the only one we saw, but we’re not quite ready yet to tell you who else we may encounter,” with the pair expressing enthusiasm for Olaf, the magical snowman, as well as the whole of Arendelle, the land Queen Elsa reigns over.
In Frozen’s original script, as well as in the original Snow Queen tale, the queen was an outright antagonist—and the show does like to offer nontraditional versions of well-known characters. (A villainous Peter Pan, for example, with Captain Hook as a heartthrob). Hopefully Kitsis and Horowitz will suppress the urge to make Elsa yet another relative of one of Storybrooke’s current residents and keep the “let it go” references to an absolute minimum.