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Once Upon a Time

Once Upon a Time TV showNetwork: ABC
Episodes: Ongoing (hour)
Seasons: Ongoing

TV show dates: October 23, 2011 — present
Series status: Has not been cancelled

Performers include: Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Morrison, Robert Carlyle, Lana Parrilla, Jared Gilmore, Josh Dallas, Raphael Sbarge, Meghan Ory, Jamie Dornan, Beverley Elliott, Lee Arenberg, David Paul Grove, and Gabe Khouth.

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TV show description:
The premise of this TV series is that many of the storybook tales that we were told as children are actually true, and fantastic characters like Pinocchio’s friend Jiminy Cricket (Raphael Sbarge) actually existed.

In Fairy Tale Land, Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) is truly the fairest of them all. After being awakened from the Queen’s sleeping death by her Prince Charming (Josh Dallas), Snow is on her way to happily ever after. Unfortunately, the Queen (Lana Parrilla) crashes the wedding and vows that she will yet enact her revenge on the couple and everyone in the land.

Once Snow becomes pregnant, her anxiety about the evil Queen’s threat prompts her to seek knowledge of the future from the only person who can see it — Rumplestiltskin (Robert Carlyle), a malevolent trickster and expert in black magic. Imprisoned in their dungeon, Rumplestiltskin makes a deal; information about the Queen’s plans in exchange for the name of Snow’s unborn daughter.

He tells Snow White & Prince Charming that the Queen created a powerful curse, one that will send everyone from Fairy Tale Land to a horrible place, one where they will be deprived of their happy endings. He also shares that, if they can keep their unborn daughter safe from the curse for 28 years, she will return to them and they will be able to undo the Queen’s curse. Snow honors her deal and gives Rumplestiltskin the child’s name, Emma.

After learning of the curse, Charming allies with other forces of good to find a way to stop it. A wardrobe is fashioned out of a tree that will be able to save one person. The plan is for pregnant Snow to be the one. Their plan is compromised however when Snow gives birth to Emma. Since the wardrobe can only protect one, Charming and Snow decide to place newborn Emma inside alone, hoping that she will someday return to free them. With the curse on the way, Charming barely has time to place his daughter in the wardrobe before he is fatally stabbed.

Flash forward to the present time where we find Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison), a 28 year-old bail bondswoman from Boston. She’s strong-willed but still not quite at home in her own skin. Abandoned at birth, Emma grew up in the foster care system where she learned self-reliance and to not let anyone get too close.

When Emma was 18, she got pregnant and decided that the best thing to do for her infant son was to give him up for adoption. When Henry (Jared Gilmore), her now 10 year-old biological son, runs away from home and hunts her down, Emma agrees to drive him back home to Storybrooke, Maine.

During the ride, Henry tells her a seemingly outrageous story, that everyone in Storybrooke is a fairy tale character trapped in time by the Evil Queen with no memory of who they truly are. He believes that Emma is the long-lost daughter of Snow White & Prince Charming and that it’s her destiny to free the enchanted inhabitants.

Of course, Emma doesn’t believe a word, but when she gets to Storybrooke, she can’t help sensing that the town and its residents aren’t quite as they seem. When Emma returns Henry to her adopted mother, Regina (Lana Parrilla) tells Emma to leave town and stay out of Henry’s life. Emma knows she doesn’t quite belong in Storybrooke, but decides to stay, and strange and mysterious things begin to happen.

Mary Margaret (Ginnifer Goodwin) is a charitable, sensitive elementary school teacher who hides a deep personal loneliness. She recognizes her student Henry’s own unhappiness and gives him a fairy tale book with the intent that he find some hope. Henry devours the stories in the book and becomes obsessed with the notion that it describes real characters and events.

Mary volunteers at the Storybrooke General Hospital where she tends for a handsome young man, John Doe (Josh Dallas), who’s been comatose for as long as anyone can remember. Day after day, she cares for him and replaces the flowers at his bedside, oblivious to their romantic connection. Nobody knows if he’ll ever wake up but Henry has some ideas.

Archie Hopper (Raphael Sbarge) is the town’s resident psychiatrist, a bookish eccentric who’s never without his signature umbrella. Tender and sincere, he’s been treating young Henry and is cheerfully welcoming of Emma’s presence in his life. Though Archie is obviously a man of sound conscience, Regina seems to be pulling his strings somehow.

Storybrooke’s dashing lawman is Sheriff Graham (Jamie Dornan). He’s level-headed, competent, and a man of action. Perceptive and diplomatic, he has an easy rapport with everyone in town. Graham is independent and always does what he thinks is right, regardless of whatever grief he may get from his boss, the mayor. Despite all of these clues, Henry remains unsure of Graham’s Fairy Tale Land identity.

As the mayor of Storybrooke and Henry’s overbearing adoptive mother, Regina (Lana Parrilla) senses a very real threat that Emma presents to her relationship with Henry. She immediately takes action to run Emma out of town, somehow mobilizing the entire town population to hassle Emma during her stay. Regina projects a calm, cool, and collected appearance, but there’s a dark, tempestuous side to her that lies just beneath her Stepford-manicured surface.

The town’s most wealthy and influential citizen is Mr. Gold (Robert Carlyle). From real estate to politics and even into the personal lives of his neighbors, Gold’s knowledge and involvement is virtually infinite. In fact, he’s got his hands in so many goings-on about town that it’s downright creepy. In addition to owning just about everything in town, Gold also operates the local pawnshop, where he spends most of his days curating the various items he’s collected over the years and making deals with the townsfolk.

The epic battle for the future of all worlds, modern and fairy-tale alike, is about to begin. For good to win, Emma will have to accept her destiny and fight like hell.
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{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Laurie January 20, 2013 at 9:06 am

AWESOME SHOW!! They better not cancel this one!! I always tape 2 at a time, cause I can’t wait for next one!! LOL

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K. Mark June 29, 2012 at 10:57 am

Does anyone know when the show will be returning?

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admin June 29, 2012 at 3:18 pm

K. Mark » In the fall but ABC hasn’t announced any dates yet.

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C. Newton June 28, 2012 at 9:41 am

My whole family loves this show! I heard rumors of “Once Apon a Time” being cancelled=( and was very upset. But now I see there will be a Season 2!!! Thank you sooo much….
I look forward to watching again!

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lorraine May 15, 2012 at 5:13 am

can somebody give me the competition numbers to enter they were to quick for me thanks

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april May 14, 2012 at 9:47 am

I love this show. One of the few my whole family can sit and watch together. So happy it’s coming back.

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lee April 15, 2012 at 11:36 am

Keep it coming! Love it! Nice to be able to sit down & watch something with my 11yr old daughter that we both enjoy! Fantastic job as well as the twist & turns from fairytale to present day. Please do not even consider cancelling & continue to entertain us for many more seasons!!!

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anita mccullough April 3, 2012 at 10:56 pm

i thought once upon a time was supposed to be on channel 7 in australia and if it is when does it start

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C. Iseminger March 29, 2012 at 4:24 pm

My husband and I joined this show several episodes from the beginning. We are still trying to get a few folks figured out….BUT WE HAVE BECOME OBSESSED with it!!!! Please do not cancel this show. I have no idea if it is in any danger of being canceled or not, but we love it and don’t want to see what happens with everyone. I can’t believe the little things we have learned that we never knew about the Fairy tale characters!!!! Thank you for making a show “outside” the box!!! We get so bored with the same old shows being done with a “new” twists…yeah right!

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Rochelle Lewis March 11, 2012 at 10:17 am

Love this show. Please don’t ever cancel.

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Jo December 20, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Well as an adult fan of fairy tales and cartoons, I find it very refreshing and nice for a change to see a show that I could sit down and watch with my kids and not be worried about all the bed hopping going on…There is hardly a TV show on these days without sex and violence in them…Sex and violence have their place I suppose but I DO NOT want to see it on every channel, on every show , at every time of the day and night! My goodness some of them might just as well be soft core porn…Even the so called family shows and shows geared towards teens, are terrible. You cannot tell me that the shows that are supposed to be about high school kids are decent entertainment, they are nothing but a sex fest of adults playing teens having sex with teachers and whoever else they decide to bed down with…What I want to know is where the heck are the good ole TV censors we had when I was a kid…I remember shows like Soap and 3’s Company and WKRP seemingly pushing the limits back in the day and networks were fined when they didn’t follow the rules! I miss innocent TV, there is something to be said about the way a love scene used to casually start with a kissing couple (NOT a suck fest, only normal kissing not smacking of the lips or playing tonsil hockey so you could actually see tongue and teeth) and than the camera would pan to the window and the light would go out or they would show a candles…?

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Jillian November 30, 2011 at 8:55 am

When I first watched this, I was not impressed. It was good but it felt like it was never ending. I kept watching and it has improved a lot. It really throws in things about fairy tale characters that you wouldn’t believe. I do hope this show last until the curse is broken.

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Amber November 7, 2011 at 8:43 pm

Well Alex, I guess my partner and I are 10 year olds, though our birth certificates would tell you we are 50 and 62 respectively with military backgrounds. We love the show. It is fresh and different and not at all childish.

Bottom line though is don’t listen to any of us. Give it a try and decide for yourself. We think you’ll be pleasantly entertained!

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Lisa November 6, 2011 at 8:13 pm

Love this show! Great cast, great story!

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Alex Writte October 24, 2011 at 1:27 pm

Please don’t listen to C.Williams. This was very VERY dry. Yes, I admit it had a “story” but it was so watered down.

This is good for 4-10 year olds.

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Kat November 30, 2011 at 9:59 am

This is a good show for anyone who enjoys a good story (the latest episode was written by the fantastic Jane Espenson) and still believes in happy endings. It kind of sounds like Alex Writte here tuned out after the first episode, which would be a shame, as it gets much better as it unfolds. My mother and I enjoy it immensely and we’re 20-something and 60-something, respectively.

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Kat November 30, 2011 at 10:01 am

Ah, I see now, Alex’s post was written after only the first episode ever aired. Now it makes more sense.

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C.Williams October 23, 2011 at 7:15 pm

That was by far, one of the best tv shows (and possibly movie) that I have seen in years. There is an actual “story” and multiple back-stories that will help carry this show for many seasons. I am so happy to see Jennifer Morrison in a starring role. She was really the only reason I held on to “House”. Also the fact that this show has 3 very gifted leading ladies is the icing on the cake for me!! I love, love, loved it and my kids did too!!

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