Saturday, November 19, 2011

Once Upon a Time is Terribly Addicting


One of this fall’s TV season standouts is ABC’s Once Upon a Time. After only two episodes, the show was rewarded with a full season order and with good reason too.
Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz, the brains behind the fabled series were also behind another little show, Lost, also on ABC. In a live telecast presented on Facebook last month, the two compared the two series stating that Lost was about redemption and Once is about hope.

Ginnifer Goodwin is Snow White
"For us, that’s what a fairytale is. It’s that ability to think your life will get better,” says Kitsis. “It’s why you buy a lottery ticket—because if you win you get to tell your boss that you’re quitting and you get to move to Paris or wherever and be who you always wanted to be. And that’s Cinderella, right? One day she’s sweeping up and the next she’s going to the ball. Adam and I just wanted to write about something hopeful that for one hour a week allows one to put everything aside and have that feeling that your dreams just may come true."

Lana Parrilla is the Evil Queen
Like Lost, Once spends about half of each episode with flashbacks. In this case, the flashbacks are of fairy tale characters in their settings that we are familiar with except that all of them know each other. For instance, Snow White and Cinderella are friends. The premise of the show is this: At the wedding of Snow White to Prince Charming (Ginnifer Goodwin and Josh Dallas), the Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla) surprises the couple with a curse that will ruin all of the character’s happy endings. This is done by sending all of them to live in the modern world, in a small town called Storybrooke with no memory of their former selves. Here, the queen serves as the town’s mayor. The link between the two worlds is Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison), who is apparently Snow White’s daughter. She escaped the curse right after she was born. As a teenager, Emma became pregnant and gave her son, Henry (Jared Gilmore), up for adoption. Ten years later, Henry has found Emma in the “real” world and brought her to Storybrooke to help break the curse.

Robert Carlyle is Rumplestiltskin
The show is hard to describe, but terribly addicting. Even though there is an ongoing story, each episode is its own story as well. Each show leaves you satisfied and yet wanting more. The cast does an incredible job playing their characters. Robert Carlyle is an incredibly creepy, Rumplestiltskin, Parrilla is perfectly evil as the queen, and Goodwin couldn’t be any more innocent than Snow White herself.

Josh Dallas is Prince Charming
For those sensitive to themes of magic and witchcraft, it is worth nothing that every time a character chooses magic, they seem to get in trouble. In the recent episode, “The Price of Gold,” Rumplestiltskin says that every contract made with magic comes with a price – a price that is greater than they were expecting. (Side note: Read the fine print!)


Jared Gilmore and Jennifer Morrison
as Henry and Emma Swan
Once Upon a Time is a show that the whole family can enjoy and can lead to some interesting discussions. It is sort of this generation’s Wonderful World of Disney. There is no gray area – the “good guys” are good and the “bad guys” are bad. The stories are simple and yet complex. There is no “agenda” to the show – just good story telling.

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