Madeline is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. She is the mother of Cruella De Vil. She debuts in the eighteenth episode of the fourth season "Sympathy for the De Vil", which was her only appearance.
Madeline and her husband had a daughter named Cruella who was very troubled. Madeline one days hears a thud in the parlor room where her husband is having tea and discovers that he has died from a heart attack. Fearing that this would have an even worst affect on Cruella's already disturbed mind, she goes in her room to comfort her, expecting to see her crying, but instead, she sees a hint of a smile on face. Madeline assumes that she is imagining it, but discovers trumpet flowers on her table and realizes that Cruella had poisoned her own father. Madeline chooses not to go the authorities, but decides to keep her close thinking that she can fix her. When Cruella tries to escape, Madeline sends her trained Dalmatians to bring her back and locks her in the attic. Madeline later remarries twice and Cruella kills her next two husbands too.
Years later, she goes in Cruella's room and discovers her listening to a radio. She realizes Cruella stole it and decides not to let her go outside anymore. Cruella begs her to give her permission to leave the house just once but Madeline refuses. A man then come and knocks on the door. He reveals that he is a reporter, but Madeline gets rid of him. When she discovers Cruella is missing, she uses her Dalmatians to track Cruella and finds that she was with the reporter (Isaac) last. Confronting him, she explains to him that Cruella lied to him about her (Madeline) killing her husbands, with Cruella being the true murderer. She explains Cruella's disturbed behavior since childhood, but he doesn't want to believe this and tells her to go. Before she leaves, she warns him of Cruella's violent nature and tells him to stay away, for "she takes what you love, and then destroys it."
She returns home and sees Cruella. Madeline commands her Dalmatian to attack Cruella, but Cruella uses her newly found powers to control her mother's Dalmatians and commands them to kill her.
Isaac, to his horror, realizes Madeline was right about Cruella's psychotic ways. Isaac then uses his Authorial powers to make Cruella unable to kill, no matter how much she desires, preventing more from suffering the same fate as Madeline and her husbands.