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"Once Upon a Time"
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Reviews & Ratings for
"Once Upon a Time" More at IMDbPro »

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45 out of 83 people found the following review useful:

Unsure whats with all the positive reviews...

Author: Spartan_420 from United States
14 January 2013

First of all I have watched every episode up to date hoping that the acting had to improve since it really couldn't get much worse, but I guess i was wrong. Everyone who is posting positive reviews must be on some serious drugs because it is awful. The plot is okay at best, but it is quickly descending. Snow white, the main character, is a joke, we spend majority of the episode making fun of her and her cheesy lines.

What upsets me the most and has encouraged me to come here and comment is all the users saying that this is one of the best shows of the year and of our time. The first season had something going and now it seems like they are making stupid things up as it goes. Only okay actors are rumplestilkin/Mr.Gold and the evil queen/Regina. So before wasting your time read my review.

Once upon a time is a complete fail compared to every other recent series and needs to be canceled to make room for better things. Putting this show up there with breaking bad, true blood, justified, walking dead, homeland, Dexter, and weeds is a such an insult. Please don't post comments if your are under 12 yrs old and like fairy tails so much that you completely disregard acting skill. Thank you very much and have a great day.

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9 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Sadly, this show has become childish and stupid

Author: krushmeat from New York City
3 November 2014

I used to look forward to watching this show. Now it's become so infantile, it's barely watchable. It's like someone at the top said, "let's make this more for kids", and they translated it to 'stupid kids'. Just as 'Once Upon A Time In Wonderland', the stupidity and childish nature of this show has pretty much done it in for me. Clearly the demographic that they're targeting is junior high school kids. Oh well. Goodbye Kitsis and Horowitz. I've enjoyed your creations before, but now they're simply banal. I guess you won't mind losing the intelligent portion of your audience, as long as you keeping setting your sights at the lowest common denominator.

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11 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

"Magic always comes with a price"

Author: Simon Bubach from Sweden
14 January 2012

This is a very innovative TV series. The evil queen wants her own happy ending, but "magic always comes with a price." It's a very clever idea, the whole series is made after that concept which makes it very unique.

All the characters are very likable except the little kid who can get a little too much sometimes. Occasionally, the series can be quite silly and goofy but I guess it is for it to be a family show but it feels stupid sometimes. But besides such trifles, it is a good television series that is exciting and fun.

It will be very exciting to see how the series continues. So far it has been very promising. One problem, however, (based on that it has been so successful) is that I'm not sure they have a good plan for a possible season two. I don't want this to become another television series that have a good first season but a bad second one.

Then finally, just to name Mr. Gold, he is easily my favorite character.

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12 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

My wife made me sit through this trash... horrible show.

Author: Marcus James from United States
9 November 2014

I was in the room while the wife watched 3 seasons of this show and by the end, all I wanted to do is castrate every man in the show, and drive a 12in spike into the skull of every princess/queen (good or bad) in the show. I have never seen more whiny characters in any show or movie in my entire 37 years of life. A lesbian emo nigh club would have more testosterone than the entire cast of this show combined (including men) and I am not even going to touch the plain stupidity of the characters from Rumple and the evil (lol) queen to Sniveling White and Peter Pan. This show is an embarrassment.

Even my wife, a huge Disney fan, made up apologetic excuses to keep watching the show. She just doesn't want her fantasy heroes and characters to suck so bad so she tried to find the good in the show and ignored all the bad.

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25 out of 44 people found the following review useful:

Super cheese feast .

Author: dhvn001 from United States
29 February 2012

The show has a promising premise , but that's about it. There's plenty of miscasts, overacting, and bad scripts to be found. After a few episodes, certain characters like the mayor and Emma really gets on your nerves with their grating personalities. Everyone seems to spend too much time arguing and plotting soap opera style. I wish the plot has better pacing and more depth. Poor Robert Carlyle, he deserves so much better. It's like seeing Kenneth Branagh in Wild Wild West. I wonder how big of a budget this show has? The scenery, costumes, and special effects all seem to be on the cheap side. It just makes the fantasy elements of the series feel underwhelming.

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26 out of 46 people found the following review useful:

Falls short from its potential.

Author: Krista T from United States
12 January 2013

First of all, I love a good fantasy or fairy tale movie/TV show. I somehow made it through 12 episodes of this show before I finally decided that any glimpse of grandeur were just that- a glimpse.

You follow the main actress who is the obnoxious reformed bad girl who gave up her son for adoption ten or so years ago, who is now just as obnoxious as she is. The adoptive mother is the evil queen, and her main role in the current day Storybrook is to tell the aforementioned bad girl to leave HER son alone. Bad girl doesn't listen because her new relationship with her son makes the storyline plod around.

Every character in Storybrook had a past life as a fairy tale character and every episode will retell the story of at least one of these folks in a new way, mostly they seem to be prequels to where most stories start off. They were trying to be fresh with their renditions, the mini plots are way too simple to have any drama to keep you hooked, so I am guessing that the people who LOVE this show are either preteens without standards or are easily distracted by fancy special effects/ Red's crazily inappropriate uniform for the café that she works for. Oh and for some reason it takes all 12 episodes that I watched for Snow White and her prince charming to finally quit beating around the bush and get together in the modern day. This show would definitely have benefited from taking inspiration from the early seasons of Desperate Housewives in terms of how to drive a dramatic romance.

Be prepared to role your eyes at the shenanigans that the characters pull seemingly without any consequences. Character development is minimal, except for Mr. Gold/Rumpeltiltskin or however his name is spelled. I'm pretty sure that he is the main reason I watched as far along as I did, and I seriously hope that he screws everyone over in the end. Another interesting character was one that the queen killed off early on in the most original plot of the entire first season as far as I am concerned, so now it is up to Mr. Gold to carry the shoddy and predictable plots/acting of everyone else. Yes, I am aware that there is a second season so my review is way behind the times,I seriously hope that they pulled a Harry Potter and chose a new director for the new season.

As far as a fairy tale mixer that I think is worthwhile, check out The 10th Kingdom. It dos something similar with the modern day getting an unexpected visit from fantasy land. While both are original, at least 10th Kingdom doesn't fall flat.

Two stars for Mr. Gold.

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32 out of 58 people found the following review useful:

Well, it started out good...

Author: kaiky4 from United States
4 March 2013

I had the highest of hopes for this show. It started out so well and the idea was solid. Now that season 2 is almost over, I've lost any enchantment the show had over me. The characters get dumber and dumber. Their actions no longer make any sense and fall so out of line with what any sane person would do in the situations they're put in, that it's almost not watchable any longer. Since I'm a a Lost fan, I'm going to hope the writers start to make these characters more watchable. I'm trying my hardest to stick with this show. But I won't lie, at this point, I don't care if the whole cast of good guys die off. They're too dumb to live.

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38 out of 70 people found the following review useful:

A decent idea with mediocre execution

Author: zgamer-1 from United States
23 November 2011

I do not think this idea had zero potential. Fairy tales have an immediate charm that could have served well for an intriguing series. Unfortunately, it has been squandered by the show's shortcomings. The first is the writing, which is almost straightforward to a fault. The dialogue has no snap or charm, with many lines just being mentally tuned out of my ears. The character are not fleshed out very well and are only distinguishable by bare bones traits, appearances or the fact they are a certain fairy tale character. There is also no emotion to the script, with many of the "sad moments" coming off so limply that they are clearly artificial.

The show also has a sense of cheapness that could have been a nice artistic touch had it not seemed like it was not intentional. The effects are shoddy, the costumes are store bought, there are apparently a very limited number of sets and it lacks artistry despite its belief that it looks fairy tale like. I think the directing is a huge problem there as to much of the pace and style play it too safe to be interesting. The pilot is a terrific example of the flatness with a terribly handled chase scene with a completely out of place song choice that just ends abruptly. This structure repeats quite often of start and stop.

One of my biggest gripes is the cast. There are some talented actors in the cast (Raphael Sbarge, Robert Carlyle, etc) but they are all mishandled and underused. The crying/emotional moments ring false, the line delivery is flat and overacting from people like Carlyle completely ruins certain scenes. Most of these people just lack charisma or screen presence despite how much the show attempts to manufacture it.

I cannot say it was just terrible, but it was completely dull. I never had a moment of excitement, humor or thrills at any point and I just had a sinking feeling that it would not improve. If it just was not so clumsy blending fantasy and reality, it could have performed better.

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57 out of 108 people found the following review useful:

This is a good show. Maybe the best one launched this year.

Author: delightful-life
31 October 2011

So many new shows came out this year, and this is one of the good ones (along with Homeland and Person of Interest) Its a fantasy show bringing two time-lines together, an ancient one with magic, witch-craft and all, and the present one. They keep switching between the two and its beautiful.

The protagonist is Jennifer Morrison (the girl in the initial House episodes). Here she sheds her normal soft self to a more bad-ass girl.

Ginnifer Goodwin (the youngest wife from the Big Love series), is as usual her sweet self, and looking really beautiful. She is Snow White.

The antagonist is Lana Parrilla as the evil Queen. Never seen her before in a lead role, and of all the cast, she was the best.

I have just seen 2 episodes, so its a little early to give a good opinion. But I would put it up there with Dexter, Fringe, etc.

Give it a try and tell us what you think.

Cheers. :-)........


Update after the 9th episode of season 1:

This is sort of a Disney series. Children will love it.

Quality has not been consistent. Some episodes were really good, and others passable. Also a little cheesy and predictable, good cheesy though.

Definitely more enjoyable than say Gossip Girl. So, mostly worth our time.


Update 2013:

I have stopped watching this show. After the initial novelty wore off, there was not much to carry it along. There are so many great shows on TV nowadays, this thing just does not match up.

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6 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Started good, but now it is getting bad

Author: patrickkemner
19 April 2016

Once Upon a Time started out a good light series for all in the first three seasons. I really liked it until the Peter Pan part which was overstretched and should have lasted three less episodes. After this, the Frozen part with Elsa and Anna was well executed and the casting for the actresses were right on the button, they were great, especially Anna. After the Frozen story, it seemed that the writers and directors rushed each of their idea afterwards, doing the complete opposite of the Peter Pan part. In season 5, it gets worse every episodes and it isobvious that the writers have no ideas anymore. They're at the crappylevel of the last seasons of Buffy, Heroes and other series that losttheir ways due to lack of ideas of overstretching the series with lesbians, cheap soap opera, etc. Don't get me wrong, I don't care if a show has homosexual stuff, or cheap soap opera, but when the show has not declared itself to be like that, then it is wrong. Once Upon a Time is not cheap soap opera or homosexual stuff, it's about fairy tales, the classic good vs. evil, magic and wonderful things in season 1 to 4. Season 5 they add the crappiest part with lesbians, cheap soap opera and so on, which has nothing to do with the theme nor with Disney or fairy tales. If at least they would add good drama in it instead of soap opera in wonderland (lol), that would have been a good addition, but it is not the case.

If you want to make a homosexual, drugs, or cheap soap opera series, do it from the start, don't change the recipe in season 5 because you ran out of ideas, just end the series if you ran out of ideas. Don't ruin the show like they did with Buffy and Heroes for example.

If the directors and writers would have been loyal to their series and developed their ideas more instead of rushing them down the throats of the fans, I would have given this series an 8 out of 10, but because the series is going downward and it is obvious that they have ran out of ideas and are just filling blank pages with pretty much anything without thinking, I'm giving it a 6 instead and that's just for the three first seasons.

Sorry guys, you should stop your series with season 5, because right now, you are not respecting your own series and you only show how much you lack ideas for your own stories. If I want to watch cheap soap opera or something else, I will not watch Once Upon a Time but those crappy series that passes in the afternoon on T.V.

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