By Curt Wagner
9:36 PM PDT, October 22, 2011
If you can get over your giggling at the fairytale premise of ABC's"Once Upon a Time"(7 p.m. Sunday, ABC; 2.5 stars out of 4), you're probably going to delight in the new drama from the writers of "Lost."
That's a big "if."
Here's the idea: Characters from a fairytale world that includes Snow White, Prince Charming, Seven Dwarfs, Gepetto, Jiminy Cricket and Rumpelstiltskin have been magically transported by the Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla) to modern Storybrooke, Maine, without memory of their original identities. Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin), for example, becomes Mary Margaret Blanchard, a teacher on her way to becoming a spinster because she just can’t find her Prince Charming, until he comes along in the form of an unidentified coma patient (Josh Dallas).
The Evil Queen has now taken the form of the town’s evil mayor, who adopted a child, Henry (Jared Gilmore), who reads a book a fairy tales given to him by Mary Margaret like it’s a crystal ball. It tells the story of all the townfolk’s real identities and can be used as a roadmap to expose his adopted mom’s wicked ways. He seeks out—oh, wait, spoilers!
Anyway, Mayor Regina/the Evil Queen feels her grip on the town and her control over the fairytale folks are threatened by bounty hunter Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison). When Emma, Henry and Mary Margaret meet up, they begin to unravel the mystery in hopes of getting everyone back to their fairytale home.
You can tell a couple of “Lost” writers—Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis—created the series, and that “Lost” co-creator Damon Lindelof was a consulting producer, whatever that is. The story slingshots back and forth from the fairytale world to Storybrooke, and the mystery and intrigue seem like they will build and build and... You get the idea; resolutions could come slowly.
Yet Horowitz and Kitsis are clever and playful in how they insert the fairytale characters into the present day, which kept my interest even when, as I said earlier, I was chuckling. But maybe that's a good sign the show will remain enjoyable. “Once Upon a Time” is just as charming as a prince.
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