Aside from a brief glimpse of a pregnant and ill Marian when we first met Robin Hood in the season 2 episode "Lacey", the only mentions of her in Once Upon a Time have been Robin Hood reminiscing about her, his regrets that her death was his fault. But no mention of how she died, or when. Until the season 3 double episode finale "Snow Drifts" and "There's No Place Like Home", when a portal set in motion by Zelena sends Emma and Hook to the Enchanted Forest, but back in time. To the moment Snow and Charming first met...
Warning, from here on out spoilers abound for the season 3 finale!
Both episodes of the season finale take place after Zelena has been defeated, and while the town is getting ready to celebrate the Coronation Ceremony (potluck at Granny's!) of Snow and Charming's new son, Prince Neal. Their main purpose is for Emma to solve her lingering issues with committing to her family and finally realizing that Storybook is her home, the place and people she's been missing all her life. It takes her traveling to her parents' past, watching her mom almost die, being a stranger to her, to realize that they (and Storybrooke) are her home (much to Hook's - who did not want her going back to NY - joy).
But what interests us, for the purpose of this blog, is the introduction at last of Maid Marion! Or here simply Marian.
In a Back to the Future - worthy moment, Emma has screwed up her parents' first meeting (when Snow originally stole Charming's mother's wedding ring), stopping them from going down the path that makes them fall in love with each other, and thus risking her own future existence. Her and Hook's plan to fix that involves getting Snow to break into Midas' Castle, during the ball to celebrate Charming's engagement to Midas' daughter, to steal the ring which she will give Hook in exchange for passage aboard the Jolly Roger away from the Enchanted Forest. But things go awry, Emma (present helps her escape and gets caught in her place and taken before... Regina! Regina throws her in the dungeon for aiding Snow's escape. In the dungeon she meets a woman in shackles, one she had seen in a village earlier, captured by Regina and her soldiers (and whom Hook had stopped Emma from trying to rescue as they weren't supposed to change the past, anymore than they already had...).
Emma manages to pick the lock on the cell, but can't bring herself to leave the woman behind to be executed by Regina. Next day Hook warns her of the consequences, says she should have left the woman to die as was always meant to happen, and who knows how this would change the timeline! Emma's solution "We'll take her back to Storybrooke with us!" This requires knocking the poor woman unconscious because of course she only wants to leave and find her family and doesn't believe their stories about the future...
After a few more incidents, they finally make it home. The woman joins everyone at Granny's for the Coronation Ceremony, is of course terrified when she sees Regina, and then delightfully shocked when a familiar voice says "Marian?". Our mystery woman is Maid Marian herself!!! Who was destined to die on the Evil Queen's orders back in the day because she wouldn't reveal Snow's hiding place... now in the present and ruining Regina's chance at a happy ending and true love with Robin Hood! Oops!
Happy Regina and Robin:
Hook (introducing himself to King Midas, at a loss to find an alias) "I am Prince..."Emma: "Charles, Prince Charles. And I am Princess Leia"
Henry (and us!) got a good kick out of that one later when Emma told the tale! :p
Straight from Sherwood:
- Maid Marian
- Robin Hood