Verdict: B+ / 5
Once upon a time, in an enchanted land far, far away, an evil queen was scorned. Not only was she a supremely powerful witch, but she was also prepared to do anything to make Snow White and her Prince Charming suffer. So she cast a spell, a powerful curse that pulled all the fairy tale characters and creatures out of their forest, rid them of their memories, and put them in the real world –where there are no happy endings. A place where time never moves forward, where there is no magic and no joy. That is until a mysterious new woman comes to town – one that will make time resume and give hope to the people of town of Storybrooke. Her name: Emma Swan.
It’s the latest in a long line of fiction to TV moves. Indeed, the fairy tale genre has become increasing popular as it shifts into the 21st century with grim storylines and a little bit of dark humour – what’s not to love? The recent movies Red Riding Hood, Snow White and the Huntsmen and Hansel and Gretel have sparked major interest in the old tales and the best is yet to come in this new genus of shows and movies.
Once Upton a Time is a TV series on the rise. The witty storyline and modern twists to old tales we grew up with results in a successful show that leaves viewers with bated breath and wanting more. Unexpected twists and startling new discoveries are the order of the day as the show jumps back and forth between the Enchanted Forest and Stroybrooke – each episode developing on a character and giving a curious history about each as they try to find their happy endings once more.
But the absolute best thing about the entire show comes in the form of Rumpelstiltskin. Brilliant portrayed by Robert Caryle, Rumpel is the most powerful creature in the Enchanted Forest and thoroughly enjoys wreaking havoc with the original storylines. He is entertaining, amusing, frightening and endearing all wrapped up into one truly incredible character. Be careful what you wish for with this one – he will give you your heart’s desire, he always comes back to collect. Rumpel one of the reasons this show is so addictive (and also makes the scenes between Snow White and Prince Charming (gag) slightly more bearable).
Season one of Once Upon a Time is available on DVD in South Africa, and season two is currently screening on the Series Channel. Season three will kick off in the United States in September 2013, and should make its way here around six months thereafter. But this show is well worth the wait! Rumoured to be making appearances in season three include Peter Pan, Tinkerbelle and Ariel (The Little Mermaid).
Jennifer Morrison – Emma Swan
Robert Carlyle – Rumpelstiltskin / Mr Gold
Lana Parrilla – The Evil Queen / Regina Mills
Ginnifer Goodwin – Snow White / Mary Margaret Blanchard
Jarad Gilmore – Henry Mills
Josh Dallas – Prince Charming / David Nolan
Raphael Sbarge – Jiminy Cricket / Archie Hopper
Meghan Ory – Red Riding Hood / Ruby
Colin O Donoghue – Hook
Emile de Ravin – Belle