Though she had a black spot on her heart in Season 2, Snow White is often as good as they come — and the non-black-spotted Ginnifer Goodwin is always a pleasure to talk to.
We caught up with Goodwin at a roundtable discussion at this year’s Comic-Con to get the scoop on what is coming for Once Upon A Time’s third season, which begins with a trip to Neverland.
“It is fraught with good intentions,” she says of the journey. “I think I can tell you that our intended destination is reached, and I can tell you that we’re going to have to put our egos aside and come together, if we’re not going to kill each other before we get there.”
Once they get there, they’ll have to get used to a new setting with different rules. “We’re going to have to figure out who can help us here, because the rules of every realm are completely different, and we know that. We would never be so foolish as to try to use our tactics, our enchanted Snow White-Prince Charming world tactics, in another realm,” she says. Snow will also have to deal with the conflict of sorting her feelings after the whole darkness-in-her-heart thing that has transpired.
“This is the cross she bears throughout the beginning of the season,” she says. “I’ve only seen a couple of scripts, and I know very little of what’s to come after the first couple of episodes, but I do know that, sort of like the characters are all going to have to come together, Snow herself is going to have to come together. She’s going to have to reconcile these two disparate ends of herself in order to be useful to anybody there. She’s torn in two at this point, and she’s going to have to figure out what parts of Mary-Margaret, even, she’s going to hold on to; and what parts of Mary-Margaret will actually drag her down,” Goodwin confirms.
“Last year it was, for her, about living in the middle, and I think this year, it’s about stepping it up and creating a new character. I mean this as Snow White. I think that she’s realizing that living in the middle — she thought it was going to be playing it safe, but instead it was disastrous. So it’s more that she needs to change,” she continues. Ginnifer openly admits that Snow’s innate ability to trust everyone is not always the best thing to do. “I think that trust is one of her biggest downfalls,” she says. “It’s one of her biggest flaws. She gives everyone the benefit of the doubt all the time. I find it incredibly annoying! It’s like, well, gee, isn’t it a shocker that the Queen lied to her again? The only thing I do find interesting in terms of that is that she’s endlessly right to trust Rumple, which I can’t figure out as an actress, what it is that they have coming, that is why he does always do right by them somehow, and Snow White is trust that he will. But yeah. She gives everybody like 4,000 chances. She’s a bit of a doormat in that way,” she admits.
Goodwin says that Snow’s happy ending would involve “living with Prince Charming and Emma and Henry and seven dwarves, or eight, in the castle in the Enchanted Woods.” But well before that happy ending comes, she’ll have to deal with Neverland, and, at some point in Season 3, Goodwin’s long-time hope of seeing the Little Mermaid on the show will be fulfilled. Is she hoping that Snow White and Ariel will interact.
“On dry land, yes,” Goodwin says. “After our siren episode in the first season, I have no interest in ever diving into that tank again. And also, we shoot in Vancouver B.C. and it is always raining, so I’m wet enough. But, I do hope to interact with her when she does appear on dry land. And we know she gets her legs, so, there you go,” she says, before taking a moment for clarification. “I mean in the story. I don’t mean in our story! I’m not making any claims about what happens to Ariel in our story! I just mean in the story of the Little Mermaid.”
Once Upon A Time Season 3 begins September 29 on ABC. Read some of our other content related to the show!