Oct 24 2011 1:07pm

I Want to Live in Storybrook: Once Upon a Time Episode 1

The cast of Once Upon a TimeLast night was the series premiere of Once Upon a Time, and I hadn’t planned to watch it. Five minutes into the show I was hooked—the setting was beautifully executed, and during the forest scene I couldn’t turn away.

Even though Snow White’s hair looked straight-up busted in every single scene (would someone get the girl a hairdresser, or at least a better wig?), the show was visually appealing and not overdone like True Blood. Had they gone the way of the fae on TB, I think I would have turned it off ASAP. The special effects were done in a way that weren’t overdone or far out there.

Prince Charming and Snow White in Once Upon a TimeThe show takes a different take on the witch’s curse to modernize the story. The witch curses Snow White and all fairy tale characters, in fact, causing them to  end up in modern times with no recollection of who they are. A small boy, Henry, happens to be Snow White’s grandson and knows that to fix the curse, his birth mother (Emma) has to do something. Thus he asks her to stay in Storybrook for a week, hoping she’ll help fight the curse. Henry is absolutely adorable and Emma kicks ass, which we saw in the restaurant scene.

Rumplestiltskin in Once Upon a TimeMy absolute favorite part was Little Red Riding Hood—they made her a hoochie! I love it! I can’t wait to see how they flesh out her character more to explain why she’s a hooch! Grandma saying “Are you going to sleep your way through Storybrook?” damn near killed me!

I asked one of my fellow bloggers, Synde, what she loved about the show, and she says she loves Rumplstilskin, how they’ve made him the perfect blend of maniac and deviant. His teeth slightly creeped me out, people. She also loved how they made it so twisted, and I totally agree.

I can’t wait to tune in next week and see what’s next!  Did you love it? Hate it? What was your favorite part of Once Upon a Time? We want to know!


Natasha Carty reviews Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy on her website Wicked Little Pixie and lives in Toronto, Canada, with her cat, Seamus.

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Stephanie Treanor
2. Streanor
As a Disney Princess junky i have to admit, i'm super excited about the
series. So tastefully done and a kick ass female heroine, bring it on!!

I have to say my only disappointment was the lack of hot men.. Prince
charming was just okay. I think it was the whole sword fighting with a
baby that kind of turned me off.

I'll guess we just have to wait and see what happens :)
Natasha Carty
3. WickedLilPixie
Stephanie - I agree, holding the baby while fighting wasn't awesome. The only hot guy was the guy Emma had the date with!
Darlene Marshall
4. DarleneMarshall
I'm trying to figure out who the sheriff is. Is he the Sheriff of Nottingham? L.Red RH's woodsman?

I'll most definitely be watching more.
EC Spurlock
5. EC Spurlock
I think the thing that most surprised/pleased me was a Prince who (a) acted like a king and (b) was clearly very much in love with his princess. The princes are usually one-dimensional afterthoughts in most fairy tales; watching him actively seeking to rescue Snow White, set up battle plans against the Evil Queen, stay beside his wife all through labor and personally fight to the death to defend his family made me want to cheer and root for him as well as his princess. Glad to see Emma inherited his fighting spirit, despite her clearly anguished childhood. They have put a lot of depth and personality into ALL the characters, and to me that is what makes a show worth watching.

Also I love the little details, like the glass unicorn mobile over the crib. This whole universe is well and truly thought out down to the last detail.

My only problem? I kept flashing back to "10th Kingdom" and expecting the trolls to show up... :-)
EC Spurlock
6. e_bookpushers
I really enjoyed watching this first episode. I agree there really weren't any hot guys but I think the story and the details in the setting ensured that was a minor thought not a disappointment. I also enjoyed trying to pick out who was whom from the fairy tales to their "real-life". I am seriously looking forward to the next episode.
Heather Waters
7. HeatherWaters
Am I really the only one who thinks Josh Dallas is hot?? That can't be true.

I feel like parts of the show could have been done better--don't know if it was the writing or directing or what, but the fairy tale stuff didn't totally work for me. It felt a little cartoonish? Maybe I just wish they'd gone darker/grittier, I don't really know. But I adore the concept, and overall I enjoyed the pilot a lot. I'll be coming back for more next week.

And I could totally see myself shipping Snow White/Charming.

@darlenemarshall -- I was curious about him too...
EC Spurlock
8. Dakota Cassidy
I dunno. I'm just not sure yet. There were parts that were really good for me, and pieces of it that made me roll my eyes (like the bounty hunter, clenched-jawed, no friends or family, loner, I'mma bad-ass in heels Emma). There's so much of that tortured character out there that I don't know if I'm up to it.

However, I dug Rumplstilskin and the sheriff. He was flat out hot, and I'll watch again next week just to see how they plan to sustain this :)
Natasha Carty
9. WickedLilPixie
@Darlene - I have NO idea who the Sheriff was but he was nice to look at!
@EC - I kept waiting for Flying Monkeys! lol
@e_bookpushers - We forgot the sheriff! He was nummy!
@H - I didn't want it any darker, that's what Grimm is for ;)
@Dakota - It'll be interesting to see how it goes, especially with Grimm starting on Friday night
EC Spurlock
10. Watcher
I was doubtful about this show at first, but by the end of the episode I was hooked. I just hope it doesn't get canceled after 2 or 3 episodes.

@darlenemarshall and @redline_
I also wondered about the sheriff because he seemed to be the only inhabitant of Storybrook not explicitely linked to a fairy tale character. I also thought he was hot and loved the hint of an accent (Irish, maybe?). I thought perhaps he'd turn out to be the evil queen's huntsmen who was supposed to cut out Snow White's heart but couldn't do it.

And I agree that Snow White's hair was crazy through the entire episode. Bad to the point of distraction.
EC Spurlock
11. BevQB
Snow White's hair? Yeah, enchanted birds nest maybe, huh? But what REALLY proved Snow needs grooming tips is those giant eyebrows in Storybrook. Is she doing double duty as one of the ugly stepsisters? lol

I found the show intriguing, but the jury's still out whether I'll continue to watch. I think it will depend on how fast/slow they let bits of the story unfold. Too slow and I'll get frustrated and give up; too fast and they run the risk of jumping the shark (unicorn?) trying to come up with fresh ideas.
EC Spurlock
12. Longstrider
EC Spurlock, my wife and I pulled out our 10th Kingdom DVDs immediately after watching this for another rewatch.
EC Spurlock
13. EC Spurlock
My suspicion about the sherriff is that they've taken a page from Bill Willingham and he's actually the Big Bad Wolf -- the one who made Emma run off the road in order to keep her in Storybrook.
cindy vinzant
14. cjv115
I liked the show cant wait for the next one i think the sherriff is the big bad woft to keep emma in storybrook
Synde Korman
15. SyndeKorman
Yeah... Rumplestiltskin was hot! Awesome article Nat!

can't wait for Grim
Tori Benson
I loved it!!! Im such a fairy tale junky. lol Loved Rumplestilskien (and everyone else). He made crazy look good. And I loved the Sheriff's accent. YUM!!!

My only problem was why on earth didn't they buld the wardobe in the bedroom?
17. Dragon
Great post. I love this show. I hope it does well so they don't cancel it. Rumple was SUPER creepy (in the best way :) I can't wait to find out the sheriff's fairy tale identity. And who's Henry's father, I wonder? You know that's going to be an interesting backstory.
Natasha Carty
18. WickedLilPixie
@EC - OHHHHH that makes sense! He is all beardy and hairy so yeah totally makes sense!
Brittany Melson
19. BrittanyMelson
I was hooked by the first episode. I laughed when Emma hobbled across the street in those high heels. Henry is so charming and cute. I thought the Sheriff worked for the Evil Queen and came for the baby when the Queen laid down her curse, but I could be wrong. The wolf idea is a good one. Can't wait for next week's episode!
Clare 2e
20. clare2e
I'm in on this one, too! I actually liked Cameron a lot more as scrappy, slightly scattered Emma, and Henry is cool, too. Right now, it's striking a nice balance for me between fantastic and grounded. (Yes, I think Prince Charming is adorable, too!) But schoolteacher SnowWhite's ears stick out with that hairdo and I agree about the eyebrows. Then again, I couldn't see why, in the first farytale scenes, nobody got that poor princess some undereye concealer. But that's all catty, petty, nothing stuff. When Rumple was Rumple, he was a little ridiculously histrionic--Pacino on helium. But, back in his persona as Mr. Gold, as intimidating and creepy as I could want.
I liked that it's obvious the world and goals aren't so simple and linear--I have hopes to find the Sheriff adorably evil, too-- and I expect more characters to pop up as we go. So far, so good. Now, I check out Grimm in a few days and see what's up there. . .
Jessica Turner
21. TheSpinecracker
Thanks for being our watchdog Nat! I'll have to give this a shot... now that it's got your (my) seal of approval.
EC Spurlock
22. CrankyAmy
First thought that popped into my head when the wedding scene came on: "What the HELL did they do to her head?!?"
Angela Clarke
23. angelgrace
I want to watch this, it looks great. Now all I need is it to air here in Australia.
EC Spurlock
24. Shark with Lasers
I got to see an advance preview of this, and I liked it a lot. Rumplestilskin is definitely an interesting antagonist, riding both sides of the fence, can't wait to see what he does next. And I like the opening sorties between Emma and the Evil Queen, I think this conflict will be the draw for me if the writing stays good. I'm a sucker for Good Mama versus Bad Mama stories.
EC Spurlock
25. JBody
This is a cute show, campy as all hell but quite watchable. I just have to say that I find the actress who plays Snow White has such enormous ears that I find them a huge distraction when she's on screen. She should have longer hair or a wig to cover them.
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