Scripted network television needs all the help it can get to compete against reality shows and cable channels developing more and more original content. So who can blame them for having not one, but two new shows this fall that borrow a little magic from the literature of fairy tales?
Last Sunday night, ABC premiered Once Upon a Time to an audience of 16 million, at least a few watching in Austin on KVUE. From the producers of Lost, the show takes the world of fairy tales and tosses it into a dull reality.
Cursed by the wicked witch, Snow White and her friends are doomed to life in a small town with no idea who they really are or the happy endings that have been stolen from them. Her daughter, however, escaped the curse and is now the only person who can set things right. An ensemble cast of stars like Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Morrison, and Robert Carlyle bring classic characters to life.
Tonight on KXAN at 8 pm, NBC will premiere their own take on fairy tales with Grimm. Turning the fairy tale aspect into a twist on the traditional cop crime show, it stars David Giuntoli as a homicide detective who discovers that not only does he have to serve and protect Portland from criminals, he is also one of a select few hunters, called Grimms, who can see the supernatural threats which surround us.
This show also comes with some impressive producer credentials, with Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel among their past credits. Whether it will earn itself the same cult following remains to be seen.
Fairy tales represent perhaps the most enduring literary genre, told to children and adults alike over the centuries in all forms of media. With these two shows, TV executives are hoping to tell audiences their bedtimes stories once more.