Once Upon a Time (2011–2018)
User ReviewsReview this title
If you want to continue enjoying Once Upon a Time, do yourself a favor and rewatch the first six seasons.
Overall though, this show is great
It's simply about Emma Swan and the destiny she's unaware of. Before she was born a prophecy was foretold that an evil curse would befall all of the inhabitants a fairy-tale kingdom sending them to a world where they no longer remember who they are or the happiness they once knew. In the prophecy it is foretold that Emma would be the one to return and save them from the dreaded curse.
Now while there are many other characters in the story it is meant to revolve around Emma and the issues she must face in order to overcome the curse. The story shows much promise already and with no doubt it is sure to progress as the show continues. Morrison (Emma), Goodwin (Snow White), and Parrilla (Evil Queen) have already hit all of the right notes in just the first episode, Parrilla I loved mainly because she makes a very worthy villain in the show.
Even though it has only begun there is great room for success and progress. I think this could be the show of the fall/winter TV season to watch. If any one decides to watch just one show this fall then let it be Once Upon a Time.
This show is about 3 key elements, henry(the boy) he's basically like the guide he tells his biological mother(Emma swan) that the entire town is filled with fairytale creatures and that his adopted mother(Regina mills) is the evil witch that cast a curse upon the town and made everyone forget about their fairytale endings, and now its up to Emma to bring them back. The reason that this show works so well is that it introduces the very seldom seen both sides of the coin element. You see what it looks like in their "modern" town and then you see what happen in the past to lead up to the series of events. All and all it works just right. 10/10 We couldn't have asked for a better show keep up the good work!
Season 5 was a mess, a drawn out convoluted mess, and it just stopped being fun. It was downhill from there, and season 7 is just a different, inferior show sadly.
So please next season - improve acting, improve story line, be a bit more original, and get some good actors, seriously !
To be honest, 3-4 episodes ago I started ironing during them, as they just do not capture my attention any more .. Now it is more like - whatever...
I am really sorry about the show - it was so nice in the beginning, and now it reminds me an endless loop, like Lost (which is why I hated this one) I hope something will change..Or at least somebody is reading the commentaries, as people start to get frustrated.
I really hope the story lines stay as interesting every week. While I do agree with some of the reviewers here about the fairy tale parts being a bit unbelievable, everything else was perfect. Even the fairy tale parts were acted well. Great cast with believable chemistry.
I've been waiting for a show like this. As kids, we all grow up with these stories, it feels great to see it come to life mingled with reality.
Definitely on my list every week from now. CANT wait for the rest of the season! WOOP!
To be sure, it does not have a dark atmosphere and if you're looking for one, this is not the show. But I think there are a lot of dark and gory shows out there, so this one looks fresh and deserves a try by anyone who likes fairy tales and fantasy.
The cast is great. It is clear that there is much effort in that section. I believe I watched Ginnifer Goodwin for the first time and I knew that Jennifer Morrison was in the show, so when I see Goodwin I though she was Morrison. This might be due to my ignorance about the actress, but given the story, the resemblance makes some sense. I don't know whether this is intentional though.
Overall, pilot is a 10, and I hope it will continue this way.
The series formed by 156 episodes, 2011-2018 , developed in seven seasons , including colorful scenarios and state-of-art FX . Fantastic series blending fairy tales , necromancy , witches , wizards , betrayals and curses , as the fate of happy endings lay in the hands of these unlikely new heroes. But unlike the "happily ever after" you may have heard about , their stories continue and end into twisted and complex denouements . Displaying a lot of flashbacks revealing the World of Fairytales where take place conflicts between King Arthur and Merlin , between Snow White and the Evil Queen , between our StoryBrook's characters and the dark beings and anything else . Among these roles establishing numerous relationships that are deeply forged , while others are destroyed . Many references have been taken from ¨Lost¨ series as well as a lot of actors and actresses from Lost have shown up in this series , including as follows : Lana Parrilla, Emilie de Ravin, Rebecca Mader, Jorge Garcia, Alan Dale , Naveen Andrews , Elizabeth Mitchell , Patrick Fischler, Daniel Dae Kim, among others . This is a nice series by two splendid creators : Adam Horowitz, Edward Kitsis . It's plenty of worderful happenings with magic , monsters , witchery , incredible heroes , and all of the characters we all know from stories growing up as Robin Hood ,Captain 'Hook' , King Arthur , Merlin , Cruella De Vil , Peter Pan , Mulan , Maleficent , and many others .
The motley group of protagonists , Lana Parrilla : Regina Mills or the Evil Queen , Robert Carlyle as Rumplestiltskin who was written specifically for him , Mary Blanchard is well played by Ginnifer Goodwin who really married Josh Dallas as David Nolan or Prince Charming , Colin O'Donoghue : Captain Killian 'Hook' Jones , Emilie de Ravin : Belle French , Rebecca Mader : Zelena , Beverley Elliott : Granny Lucas , Sean Maguire : Robin Hood , Lee Arenberg : Leroy , Meghan Ory : Ruby , being well accompanied by great guest stars such as : Jamie Chung as Mulan , Gabrielle Anwar , Barbara Hershey , Etham Embry , Diana Ramirez , Alan Dale , Giancarlo Esposito , Tony Amendola , Eion Bailey , Sarah Bolger , Sonequa Martin-Green , Emma Caufield , Sebastian Stan who married Jennifer Morrison , Agnes Bruckner , Tzi Ma , Jorge Garcia , Christopher Gorham , Oded Fehr , Amy Acker , Joaquin de Almeida , Richard Schiff , Robin Givens , John Rhys-Davies , Brad Dourif , among others . The series was well directed by a plethora of TV professional directors , such as : Michael Schultz , Kate Woods , Nina Lopez-Corrado , Steve Miner , Ralph Hemecker ,Antonio Negret , Ron Underwood , Guy Ferland , Jon Amiel , Mario Van Peebles , Mick Garris , Michael Waxman , David Boyd , Greg Beeman , Andy Goddard , Alex Zakrzewski , Ernest R. Dickerson , creator Adam Horowitz , Rob Duncan , Eriq La Salle , Jennifer Lynch , Craig Powell , Bryan Spicer and even Lana Parrilla herself .
As a viewer if you're looking for a TV show that challenges you and makes you think, you're at the wrong place.
As a viewer if you're looking for weak plots, weaker plots and weakest plots, congratulations.
I know what you're thinking, why did I consider a show based on fairy tales for intelligent TV viewing?
I hadn't. It was by complete chance that I stumbled upon the first episode and it intrigued me. The first season was done remarkably well but as with most shows the problem generally arrives after the first season.
Second season was made up of a lot of about-turns and the general tendency of this show is, if there is a snag in the storytelling, throw in more characters. The amount of irrelevant characters they put and pull: amazing. For that, I guess, we can give the writers credit. It does cause people to overlook how tedious the story progression is.
And as all shows, when nothing goes right, sprinkle romance.
Again, you might ask, why would I not expect romance in a show based on fairy tales?
Because it started out as a good adventure based show, I could actually see it turning it into the likes of Merlin where the focus is more on the fictional setup. By season 3 all their magical back-stories were, I don't know put on hold maybe, and they had 2-3 new guys for the love stories. There never was a chance to get invested in those love stories/triangles as they were sudden and lacking any emotional growth.
If they lose half the unneeded cast, try to find one story which the show can stick to, give the characters a break-free path to grow upon, this show might regain it's charm. Otherwise, well a lot of people liked Twilight (The similarities are uncanny when we compare twilight to the main lead Emma Swan's so-called romantic 'problems'), and I guess if this made it to fourth season, a lot of people like this too.
I have to admit I stopped caring around halfway season 2 but I still made myself watch till the end of season 3 because I kept feeling like this was such a wasted opportunity and oh this could have been so much more than a soap drama. I guess that's the only reason I care enough to write this review even though I'm not gonna continue watching it. It's just sad to see so much potential executed so badly.
I never watched Lost seriously. I found that show more pretentious and self-involved and just confused, never deep. I was always afraid this show would fall prey to similar script problems. Even so I had to give it a try.
That the first episode was weak isn't entirely a fault. The whole hour was exposition. We had to get from the story books to Storybrook before the real action could begin. The second episode actually had good transitions from past to present. I also wanted to be impressed the 3 main lead women.
And though I despise Disney-fication of fairy tales, I must say that turning Jiminy Cricket into a psychiatrist and a possibly corrupt one at that is a stroke of brilliance.
Ginnifer Goodwin's Mary Margaret Blanchard/Snow White isn't much of an actress sadly. She seems to have escaped directly from a senior class play onto the set of this show. I think it was Dorothy Parker who criticized Katherine Hepburn as having an emotional range of from A to B. Ms. Goodwin is much less gifted. Lana Parrilla's Mayor/Wicked Queen struts angrily about the set and snarls when she's not whining. She's neither wicked enough to be a wicked queen nor pathetic enough to gain sympathy. Her tragic back story is just a cliché. Ms. Parrilla needs a script and a verbal dope slap or two from her director if she doesn't give us a richer, more nuanced evil queen yet all she has is horrible, flaccid, clichéd writing. I knew that the show was in trouble when the writers' love affair with psychological; gobbledygook explained Lana Parilla's character as a poor, misunderstood victim of a more evil mother and thwarted love. I think the writers decided that she really does care for Henry and can't be all bad. But a fairy tale must have a focus of evil against whom all other must strive. Making Regina wishy-washy necessitates Barbara Hersey's Cora as the ultimate evil. Even this duplicative mess hasn't taught the scriptwriters a lesson and we're in danger of having Cora excused as an overwhelmed mom just trying to do right by her ingrate daughter.
I like Jennifer Morrison. Her Allison Cameron on House was one of a very few actors who weren't blown off the screen by Hugh Laurie. Her Emma Swan in the initial episode was one of the best things in the hour. However, she has no script worth playing and she's fallen into the trap of lazy actors who rely on standard expressions, mannerisms and deliveries if their directors aren't pushing them or they aren't pushing themselves. Unfortunately the writers haven't given her much with which to work. The crux of her problem is that there's just no chemistry between her and Jared Gilmore's Henry.
I've been a fan of Barbara Hersey's work for decades. Her best hope in this series is for Cora to find a quick death so that she escapes further embarrassment.
As for the men, what is Josh Dallas doing on camera at all? I understand that the show needed a pretty boy for Prince Charming he started the show in a coma and as far as I can see has never come out of it.
Robert Carlyle's Rumplestiltskin/Mr. Gold grabs the camera the moment he enters and holds it until his but too often descends into a lot of scenery chewing. Still even he can't work from the vast emptiness that passes for a script.
I've kept watching for about 2 and a half years hoping week in and week out that this show would grow into something extraordinary but I've given up. Just because these fairy tale characters are archetypes doesn't give license for them to be as flat as the pages of a story book. Rather it offers the opportunity to show us ourselves through them. The greatness of fairy tales is that they deal in absolutes. There is definite evil. There is definite good. Usually the hero or heroine of the story must make a journey of discovery from which he or she returns wiser, more mature and more powerful. Upon the main character's return he or she is equipped to overcome life's obstacles. There is precious little ambiguity. All clouds hanging over the characters clear and the couple, if there is one, can love "happily ever after" exactly because they have the experience to overcome difficulties that are far more petty than those they have already faced. Once Upon a Time founders about in a sea of ambiguity and bad writing and has just become unwatchable. It is infinitely less interesting than Grimm on NBC which also has far better writing. And it's a lot less go-for-broke exuberant and edgy fun than SyFy's Lost Girl. ABC needs to toll the bell, close the book and snuff the candle to exorcise this turkey from its roster even a second hour of the gawdawful America's Funniest Home Videos would be an improvement.
From the same show's writers comes 'Once upon a time', starring Jennifer Morrison(House MD) as Emma swan a loner who on her birthday is visited by her son(Henry)(Actor:Gilmore) whom she had given up for adoption a decade ago. While trying to get him home ,Henry tries to convince her that she is a part of the "Fairy Tale" world like all of his neighbors in 'Storybrooke'. He even points out that his mother(Parilla) is 'evil'. Emma of course, never believes him. After meeting his teacher Mary(Goodwin), she realizes his life is not unlike hers. Orphaned at birth, lonely and in need of love. She also sees why Henry would find it hard to like his adoptive mother who she thinks is a "Hard ass".
Meanwhile, like their previous series, the writers have infused this one too with parallel flashback sequences. It takes place in the fairyland where snow white(goodwin again) and her husband-prince are trying to find ways to beat the evil queen's(Parilla!) impending curse.
The pilot hits the right note everywhere. There is not a moment of unnecessary drama, action or even unwanted CGI. Morrison seems at ease with her role as a clueless 'chose one' , who needs to slowly unravel the mystery of the town. The supporting characters seem perfectly cast and the child actor Gilmore does real fine acting for a 10 year old. The plot looks promising too.
However if past instances have taught us anything it is that even great series can take a fall by- 1. Running out of good ideas(like Heroes) 2. The channel canceling it abruptly due to poor Nielsen rating(V).
If 'Once upon a time' can survive these two dreaded pitfalls, then we may have a potential 'LOST' in making. This one is surely the season hit!