Lana Parrilla as the Evil Queen/Regina

I’ve been waiting years to file a story with, “Once upon a time…” as the lede. Finally got to do it today in The Star with this feature on the launch of two dramas with a fairy tale hook: Once Upon a Time (premiering Sunday at 7p.m. on CTV and 8 p.m. on ABC) and Grimm (next Friday at 8p.m. on CTV and 9 p.m. on NBC).
Not sure the world is waiting for TV dramas based on fairly tales–Pushing Daisies blossomed then went to seed just a few years ago as a “forensic fairy tale”–but at least they are different from the vast majority of the hour-long dramas introduced this season.
Once Upon a Time works best I think. The series stars Jennifer Morrison from House as one of the residents of Storybrooke, Maine, a parallel world where fairy tale characters like Snow White, Prince Charming and the Evil Queen live modern lives under different names. Seems they’ve got amnesia, and they don’t know they have separate identities as classic fairy tale villains in that other world. Probably some spell Disney cast to avoid paying royalties.

Robert Carlyle as Rumpelstiltskin. Go Scotland 

Morrison plays Emma Swan who has a foot in both the modern world and the fairy tale world. Ginnifer Goodwin (Big Love) plays the dual role of Snow White and Sister Mary Margaret Blanchard. A very diverse cast, including Raphael Sbarge (Jiminy Cricket/Archie Hopper), Lana Parrilla (Evil Queen/Regina), Robert Carlyle (over-the-top fun as Rumpelstiltskin/Mr. Gold) and Giancarlo Esposito (Magic Mirror/Sydney) all dive into duel roles.
See what the critics over at TV Worth Watching think about both these new shows here.

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