Some time in the past, King George's wife was cursed with infertility. Eventually, he makes a deal with Rumplestiltskin to acquire a son for an unknown price. Due to George's influence, Prince James grows up to be an arrogant and prideful young man. Years later, when James has grown up, King George storms into his bedroom and interrupts a tryst between him and Jacqueline. He informs his son that the coffers of the kingdom are low due to his latest string of dalliances and that the treasury cannot hold out much longer. He also informs them of Anton's presence in the kingdom, and when Jack states she wants a crack at him, George informs her he does not want to use violence just yet, then sends James to check the giant.
Many years later, King George's kingdom is in need of gold. To address this problem, George has his son, Prince James, duel a Behemoth to impress King Midas. After James seemingly kills the man, George makes a deal with Midas; his son will slay the dragon terrorizing Midas' kingdom, and George, in return, will receive gold and other riches. Midas agrees, turns Prince James' sword into gold as a small payment in advance, and leaves. After Midas leaves, the prince is killed by the brute who they thought had been killed in the duel.
Shortly afterward, George says goodbye to his son's body as his knights take it away for burial. He tells his guards that he has already sent for someone to help them, and Rumplestiltskin arrives and makes a quip about the dead prince. The knights leave and George begs Rumplestiltskin to bring his son back. The imp concedes that not even magic could raise the dead, and tells him about the deceased prince's twin. In exchange, King George gives Rumplestiltskin the whereabouts of his family's patron, a certain Fairy Godmother.
The twin, "Charming," is brought to the castle where King George forces him to replace his dead son. Charming takes on James' identity. Charming successfully kills the dragon and presents its head to King Midas.
Midas, in return, brings forth his daughter and says that he valued her more than gold. He offers Prince Charming her hand in marriage. As Charming is about to refuse, King George pulls him aside and threatens to harm his farm and mother. The prince reluctantly agrees to the marriage and takes Abigail on a scenic carriage ride, where he meets the exiled princess turned thief, Snow White.
After the encounter with Snow White ("Snow Falls") , Prince Charming noticeably begins acting strange, and King George figures out that he has fallen in love with someone other than Abigail. He threatens Charming yet again, telling him to get that woman out of his head. Charming, as a result, writes a letter to Snow White in the hopes she feels the same about him as he does for her.
King George's men capture Snow White when she attempts to speak to Prince Charming, and throws her in the dungeons. When she breaks out with the dwarves Grumpy and Stealthy, his guards kill Stealthy and are about to kill Grumpy when Snow White offers herself instead. George then takes her inside the palace, close to Prince Charming's quarters, and reveals that he knows all about the love letter.
He says that she must tell the prince that she doesn't love him, otherwise, he would kill Prince Charming. Snow White says, "You would do that to your son?" and he roughly replies that Prince Charming is not his son. Once Snow White did as he said, he let her go free.
However, when Abigail arrives to the kingdom for the wedding, he orders the search for Prince Charming, who has run away from him. He later finds the prince at Snow White's newest hideout with Red Riding Hood, and tells his men that he wants Prince Charming's head, leading the two to escape on horseback.
Later, his men corner Prince Charming and Red Riding Hood in a clearing at nightfall, shooting flaming arrows at them in order to get them to move, but they stay put. Prince Charming blocks many arrows and Red decides to give him a head start. Prince Charming escapes, and Red turns into a werewolf and attacks King George's men.
After Prince Charming rekindles Snow White's memories of him when she was affected with Rumplestiltskin's forgetfulness potion, King George's men blindside them and capture Prince Charming, intending to bring him to George's kingdom for execution.
However, in the middle of the execution, the Evil Queen intervenes on Prince Charming's behalf, offering to purchase his life from George for all the gold Midas promised to give him. When George asked what Regina wished to do with Prince Charming, she planned on using him to get her final revenge on Snow White White and also promised to punish him in ways that would make him wish for a simple execution.
After accepting this deal, George's castle was later sieged by the combined forces of Snow White, the seven dwarves, Red Riding Hood and Granny, and an army of fairies in an effort to rescue Prince Charming before George traded him to the queen.
Prince Charming is imprisoned in the Evil Queen's castle, but with the help of the Huntsman, he escapes unharmed. Then, he bumps into Rumplestiltskin in the forest. Rumplestiltskin enchanted his mother's ring so that the closer Prince Charming is to Snow White, the brighter it will glow. He made a deal to help Rumplestiltskin hide a potion inside a dragon, and in return he is given the ring to find Snow White. Prince Charming is able to save Snow White after the Evil Queen put a curse on her that made her sleep for eternity. He broke the curse with true love's kiss and they lay low afterwards to avoid King George's men who are searching for them.
Some time later, Sir Lancelot leaves the Round Table for reasons unknown and King George makes him his general. Snow White, his "son's" fiancée, is captured by Lancelot, and he brings her to King George. At his castle, King George tells Snow White about his past with his wife, and how they fell in love and married, but she was cursed to never be able to bear children. As it turns out, he curses Snow White in the same manner by having given her a cup of water to drink from, which unbeknownst to her, has poison that makes her barren. He lets Snow White leave after that, and Lancelot decides to change his allegiance after seeing the kind of man the King truly is and chooses to follow her.
Although King George was successful in cursing Snow White, the curse was broken by the powers of Lake Nostos' waters, and she was able to bear a child, Emma.
Sometimes later, he joins force with the Evil Queen against Snow White and Prince Charming. However, his army is defeated.
After the curse, Albert Spencer is the Storybrooke District Attorney. He conducts an interview with Mary Margaret Blanchard regarding the disappearance and assumed murder of Kathryn Nolan. Mary Margaret ends up incriminating herself in this interview, which seems to satisfy Spencer.
Later, Spencer meets with David and warns him that he plans to make his life hell as revenge for ruining his plans for family as King George. Spencer tries to frame Ruby for Billy's murder, forcing David to protect her and choose his friend over the townspeople. Granny follows the scent of Billy's blood to Spencer's car and she and David find evidence that Spencer killed Billy. They stop him from killing Ruby in her wolf form but he escapes and burns Jefferson's hat, preventing them from opening a portal to rescue Mary Margaret and Emma Swan.
Years later, David confronts Spencer, having learned the man was involved in his real father Robert's murder. Spencer calmly admits to ordering Robert's death and had offered the man a reward for finding James beforehand, which was refused. Spencer starts to sadistically taunt David of a future his father probably had in mind if he succeeded in his goal of reuniting his family before he's silenced. David throws him a knife and they duel, with the former gaining the upper hand. Before he can kill Spencer out vengeance, Hook arrives just in time to pull David away and put Spencer back in his cell.
- In the sixth episode of the first season Rumplestiltskin told him that a Fairy Godmother protected his family, and she protected Cinderella so possibly they're family.
- In "The Prince and the Pauper" cartoon, the King was present. However, he was not seen, only listened by the poor sosie of his son. In this version, the King was dying and is described like a good and generous sovereign in contrast with King George's evil behavior.
- It's rather fitting that King George ended up in the asylum, given his terrible crimes and he more than likely suffered from the same delusion King Arthur did: that he needed to take control of the town because he had been a king.
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