/ Tuesday, October 9th, 2012

by Makena W.

Did you ever wonder what it would be like if your Disney favorites crossed over from the world of fantasy to our world of reality?  Would Cinderella really marry Prince Charming?  Would Belle choose the beast to spend eternity with?  Would the Dwarfs really show their personalities in their behavior? Would the Evil Queen only target Snow White?   All this and more is revealed in the ABC hit series Once Upon A Time.  Season 2 has just begun.  If you haven’t found it or are a little intrigued about who you may encounter, here is a quick rundown of the cast of characters.

Background Information
All fairytale characters live in a legendary, mythical world. Snow White is best friends with Little Red Riding Hood, Belle falls in love with Rumpelstiltskin and so many more things you didn’t learn from the original fairytales.

**WARNING:  SPOILERS OF SEASON ONE START HERE.  If you don’t want to know what happened, please scroll down until you see a message explaining that the spoilers are over.**

The Curse:  The Evil wasn’t always evil.  She fell in love with a man named Daniel, but was forced to marry someone else, who had a daughter named Snow.  Snow White found out that the Evil Queen doesn’t love her father, and the Evil Queen tells her that she has to keep the truth a secret.  Snow isn’t the best at keeping secrets, and tells the Evil Queen’s mother.  Her mother confronts the Evil Queen about it and kills Daniel.  The Evil Queen would never forgive Snow for indirectly killing her love.  Fast forward awhile and you see a pregnant Snow White and Prince Charming’s wedding, which gets interrupted by none other than the Evil Queen.  She threatens to put a curse on the whole kingdom as revenge on Snow White.  The curse is that all citizens of the kingdom get sent to another world where they don’t remember anything – who they are, who they love, and so much more.  Rumpelstiltskin helps create this curse.  Snow White has her baby and names her Emma.  Luckily, Gepetto built a wardrobe that can save only one person.  Of course, baby Emma gets placed and the wardrobe and becomes invulnerable to the curse.  A prophecy is then created that only Emma can save the citizens when she turns 28.  She has to figure out on her own how to break the spell.

Emma Swan: Emma is 28 years old when the show begins, the age where she is able to break the curse to save everyone.  Unfortunately, she is unaware of this along with everybody who is cursed.   She isn’t as “girly” as you would expect a princess’s daughter to be.  She is very headstrong and stubborn.  Emma has grown up alone and celebrated her 28th birthday on her own, until a young boy by the name of Henry knocked on her door and claimed to be her son.  She had put her son up for adoption years ago but didn’t believe that this could be him.  Henry tells her about the curse and that she is the only one who could save them.  Henry also informed Emma that he thinks that her mother is Snow White.   Emma dismisses his suggestions and tells him that fairytales only happen in books.   Henry begs her to travel to the town of Storybrooke, Maine which is where he lives.  Overtime, she starts to have an unusual connection to Henry and Mary Margaret, his teacher.  Emma decides to stay in the town of Storybrooke and also begins to believe that the curse is real, but she has no idea how to save the town or its people.

Regina Mills:  Regina is one of the only a few people who remember the fairytale world and the curse. Of course she would, because she created it.  Regina is the Evil Queen.  She and Mr. Gold work together to make sure Emma doesn’t interfere with the curse, so that they would remain in power.  If the curse is broken, everybody would remember that she is responsible, and her power would be gone – that is if she doesn’t get killed by the citizens of Storybrooke first.  Regina is even in power in this little town in Maine serving as its mayor.  She won’t let anything get in the way of her power.   She has abused Mr. Gold’s alliance and taken advantage of him.   She is pure evil with the only good thing about her being her undeniable love for Henry.

Henry:  Henry is ten and was put up for adoption when he was just a young boy.  He was adopted by Regina Mills – otherwise known as The Evil Queen.  He lived a very strict and unhappy life.  His teacher, Mary Margaret, realizes this and gives him a book titled “Once Upon A Time”, which has many classic fairytales in it along with pictures of some of the characters.  Strangely, these photos resemble people that he knows in Storybrooke.  He starts to believe that the fairytales actually happened in a parallel universe.  Nobody knows how Henry knew about the curse, and we don’t know if he is from the fairytale world.  He is very passionate about his belief of fables.  At one point in the series, Emma decides she is leaving Storybrooke.  She goes to tell Regina that she will still visit Henry and wants Henry to travel to see her.  When she returns to her house, Emma tells Henry that Regina made her a delicious apple pastry.  Henry is positive that it contains poison and demanded that she threw it out, but she didn’t.  To prove his cause and to make sure Emma didn’t eat it, Henry took a bite from the poisoned dessert.  He falls over, unconscious.

Mary Margaret:  Mary Margaret is a grade school teacher, and Henry is one of her students.  She loves animals and is one of the most caring people in Storybrooke.  This proves that she is Snow White in the other world.  She picked up on Henry’s attitude and gives him a book filled with stories to expand his imagination and make him happier.  Regina finds out, furious that she, the one who led her to do all this, might help break the curse.  Henry tries to convince Mary that she is Snow White, but she doesn’t believe in the curse.  When she meets Emma, they have a very unusual connection.  Mary also meets a man named David and has an unusual connection with him also.

David Nolan:  David is Prince Charming in the other universe.  However in Storybrooke, he falls in love with a girl named Kathryn and they get married.  When David meets Mary, he has a relationship with her that is very odd.  Meanwhile Kathryn and David are fighting frequently, and decide to divorce.  David then pursues dating Mary.

Mr. Gold:  Mr. Gold owns a pawn shop in Storybrooke.  In the other world, he is Rumpelstiltskin.  He loves manipulating people, getting things from them and giving them basically nothing in return.  He is allies with Regina Mills, and they work together trying to get Emma out of Storybrooke before she realizes the curse is real.  Unfortunately for him, his love Belle (Yes, the Belle from Beauty and the Beast) is locked up by Regina, to use as bait for Mr. Gold if necessary.   Mr. Gold is unaware of this until after he helps Regina with many things.


New episodes of Once Upon A Time premiere Sundays at 8 Eastern Time on ABC.  If I had to give you any advice, it would be to make sure you have a lot of time for this show – you get addicted fast! Season Two just started on September 30th. That episode, along with a recap of season one, are available On Demand for free.  My recap is a little brief (there are so many more stories behind the characters and their actions!) and is also missing a few other storylines which include Officer Graham, Maleficent and Pinocchio. This season Mulan, Captain Hook and Mary Poppins are being introduced to Storybrooke.  Watch to see what happens when fantasy becomes reality!

See ya real soon!  (Or should I say, “Magic is here, my dearies!”)
~Makena W.


Quote of the Week:  “The one thing no one can escape …. Destiny.” ~ Mr. Gold/ Rumpelstiltskin



3 thoughts on “The Magic is Coming: A Review of ABC’s “Once Upon a Time””

  1. Blake says:

    Alas, I had to skip over the spoilers because I’m only 7 episodes in, BUT I did want to say that I just started watching the show a few weeks ago on Netflix and I’m really enjoying it so far. It failed to register with me over the past year that it’s basically a primetime show about Disney, which is right up my alley. Regina makes Lotso look tame!

  2. Lorraine Pfaller says:

    Interesting that you have a review on this “Disney” site. I was just telling family how the show is incorporating more Disney in its storyline. Last year Snow White with a blue bird, this year Mulan is a character and Beauty and the Beast Belle has “Chipped” a teacup which later Beast cherished.

  3. JimmyMackey says:

    I don’t mean to be all sappy and everything, but the second episode made me sad. It showed me how devastating the effects of abuse are with each generation and how a person can be hurt so badly that they end up hurting others too. Perhaps Regina and Mr. Gold will find a way to redeem themselves after all. Honestly, I wouldn’t have even thought about watching if I hadn’t seen it on my PrimeTime Anytime recordings yesterday. It’s a pity I didn’t see the premiere but the shows delete themselves after eight days. Now I can’t wait to find out how they’re going to get back, and who is going to win, Rumplestiltskin or The Queen.