Show: ABC’s Once Upon A Time
Featured Characters: Snow White and Prince Charming
Once Upon A Time‘s Snow White and Prince Charming quickly became the ultimate fairytale couple when the show first aired. The series could’ve done such an extraordinary job with them if the writing didn’t focus as closely on the plot, but regardless, more often than not, they embodied true love adorably. They were unbreakable, and though we couldn’t usually trust where the writing would lead, we could always trust that Snow and Charming would make it through everything.
Snow and Charming define everlasting; no matter what life threw at the two, they’d find a way to be together—to be one, through every curse, every obstacle, and every separation. They overcame all challenges, and later, they physically shared a heart. Stronger than ever before with every passing season, their love stood as a beacon of hope despite all the antics that continually ruptured. Though the show made them a bit more vanilla than they could’ve been, the adaptation allowed one of the most mundane fairytales the chance to be gorgeously hopeful.
Snow White and Prince Charming: The Embodiment of Hope
In simple terms, Snow and Charming gave viewers hope—they were always an excellent reminder of unparalleled goodness even while most of the people in their lives didn’t deserve the grace they bestowed.
What exactly did “I will always find you” mean? There’s the magic behind it, sure, but more than anything, it was always about hope. Their love was written to prevail as a light to showcase that determination matters more than anything else. While six seasons and twenty-two episode arcs made many of the storylines repetitive, much of the first season is where their love is at its best. As their story came to us with a twist in the amnesia trope, the development is what led to rooting for them until the very end. In those trying times, their story exhibited what true love is supposed to be like. We sat with bated breath week after week to see how they’d find each other before the curse broke, thrusting their fairytale into motion.
Whether Snow is splitting her heart into two pieces or Charming is jumping in front of an arrow to protect her heart’s virtue, their love consistently defines selflessness. It’s adorable, genuinely and purely, to think that Charming would rather injure himself than see her heart turn dark. Their type of love revolutionized the idea that bringing out the best in a partner is what’s most vital.
Snow and Charming have been through more heartbreak than we could ever imagine anyone going through. Still, they’ve continuously actualized the conception that goodness and love have a way of benefiting people more than anything else. They kept authenticating that at the end of the day, no matter how successful, terrible, tiring, or heartbreaking, everything is more beautiful when a person is with their true love. It’s inspiring that Snow was still open and forgiving despite everything they’ve been through with evil villains taking time away from their babies.
There are many ways in which the series could’ve allowed them to be an even better couple if they didn’t consistently sideline them to favor arcs surrounding Regina. Sure, she was always going to be a significant part of their story, given her connection with Snow, but more often than not, she took precedence when it should’ve been Emma. This isn’t to say that we don’t have some incredibly beautiful moments with the two of them and their kids (Emma and Graham (no, I will not call him Neal)), but those moments were always fleeting. The audience deserved to see them as a family more frequently because, with every lost opportunity, both Snow and Charming would’ve wanted more. And for a couple with so much love to give, the audience deserved to see them spread it more. And they did, even while the writing tried to push them in a completely different direction. Perhaps if the show were airing today on a streaming channel instead of on network television with 22-episode arcs, the writing would’ve been less convoluted, allowing their love story a better break than the constant battlegrounds they walked through.
But, unfortunately, it is what it is. And Once Upon A Time let Snow White and Prince Charming’s story get messy with time travel. Yes, they found their way again. No, they never broke up or went through any silly hurdles, but they deserved far more as a couple with this much potential. They earned the chance to explain the soulmates’ arc. And they also deserved not to have their happiness continuously threatened by having there be conflicts where the plot forces itself in the way of their story. Flashbacks and flashforwards were fun for context, but for the overarching story, it took time away from developing them further.
Still, Snow and Charming were a constant reminder that it’s better to remain humble and open because these choices don’t ignore the problems left in the world. Instead, it equates to knowing yourself and understanding that the greatest happiness can be found in the smallest moments. It’s going to bed at night knowing that whatever tomorrow brings, you have loved and are loved because there’s no form of happiness greater—whether it’s platonic or romantic, love is everything, and theirs was a healing balm in Once Upon A Time.
Together they would always be unstoppable. Snow White and Prince Charming would always be each other’s strengths in times of weakness—the safe place to fall when the world spins too quickly. Parts of them continued to see each other and loved one another because they couldn’t bear ignoring the spark bursting through them.
There’s also the matter of allowing them the chance to be brought to life by gifted actors (and real-life couple), Ginnifer Goodwin and Josh Dallas, for it made their story that much sweeter to unfold. It brought a sense of comfort knowing that this story kicked into motion a love story outside of the scripted text as well. Ultimately, it was clear that it’s impossible to keep Snow White and Prince Charming apart because their souls are so steadily intertwined that no matter where they are or how the world tries to tear them apart, they’re complete in ways no one else will understand. They’d feel the absence and profound weight of the other’s love, drawing nearer to them in every timeline.