In the penultimate scene of the last episode of the third season of The Fall Rose is reading the The Frog Prince fairy tale to her daughter. It's the original version of the fairy tale, where the frog transformation is triggered by the princess not kissing, but hurting it.

Why has this fairy tale been selected for this scene? What is the symbolism behind it in the context of the show (or this particular episode) events?

2 Answers 2


The only explanation I have is: Disney's (and society's) version of the tale has a young girl acquiescing to the unpleasant experience of have the male frog in her bed. Which is even creepier when it turns out it's not some strange frog, it's some strange dude. So a man, in frog form, bullying his way into a young girl. Messed up. The second version has a different ending: the frog doesn't turn into a prince because the princess accepts him and his behavior as is. He changes because the princess refuses him as he is--she literally throws him against the way. This ties back to how the doctor character mentions that he believes women are stronger than men, and how women should hurry up and take control of the world. Which is patronizing to hear when you're a woman and because of your gender are forced to deal with dangers and discriminations that you didn't sign up for. But the symbolism is, women taking control of the world back from men. or at least control of themselves. and this is what the princess does: she refuses to submit to male behavior that she finds unacceptable. The 'happy ending' doesn't come from a woman's submission, but from a man changing in response to a woman.

  • Kindly add everything in single answer only
    – Ankit Sharma
    Commented Jun 2, 2017 at 5:59

The show is called The Fall. One wonders why.

The fairy tale quote mentions a fall.

"But when he fell down, he was not a frog, but a prince with beautiful friendly eyes. "

Is the show trying to suggest that Gibson had to break Spector for him to change? Is it saying that his murder of the child-rapist inmate was a sign of Spector being beautiful and friendly? While I can see how killing a child-rapist may feel just, Spector also bashed his therapist's face in mercilessly. I don't see that as "beautiful and friendly."

It was an amazing and haunting show. I'm still trying to understand its conclusions.

It can be noted that there are clear "falls" (not ones that turn out "beautiful" like the frog tale, however): Burns' professional and emotional descent, Stella's seeming brokenness after being beaten viciously by Spector, Anderson's once-again destroyed arm/career, Sally Ann's desperate suicide attempt. Spector' fall, I think, was the loss of the protection his sick acts had afforded him against the horrors and pain of his past. Stella--almost cruelly--made him feel those keenly, and in so doing stripped him of his cocky stoicism.


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