"Once Upon a Time" Idea?

I’ve been tossing around the idea of doing something following the basic premise of the “Once Upon a Time” television series. For those who have not seen it, the basic premise (at least in season 1) is that the Evil Queen (of Snow White) curses the fairytale characters to a Land Without Magic (our world) where they have different identities and no memory of their past lives. Season one tended to feature one main character’s original life story per episode, in concert with actions in our world. There’s a savior that comes in, etc. etc. Later seasons have a similar curse (it got kinda repetative) with bad guys becoming good, different fairytales / legends being introduced, an overriding Dark One, etc. etc.

It seems like there’s lots of opportunity for a series, but I’m somewhat concerned about getting rid of all the women in the fairytales. I mean, the were all written by str8s and so it’s always a princess geting her prince, and you lose some recognizability and therefore fun with that loss. But maybe I should re-read gymmuscle’s “The Change” series for some general idea of writing an all-male world … or, really, two all-male worlds: one original and one cursed.

Anyway, not sure on this one. Thoughts?

In general, I don’t care for the stories that use pre-existing characters (I’m trying to be nice - actually I vociferously dislike most of them). But your idea reminds me of I story I read a while back - either here or on MCstories - which is sort of like a famous film noir film (maybe someone here will recognize the film - I think it’s from 1946-47).

In the film, a guy awakes with amnesia and has no idea who he was but follows the clues in his coat pocket. He meets up with a woman and she helps him navigate the world - he finds his keys and address in the coat pocket so he figures out how to get home. But there’s more in his pocket, like a small personal phonebook. Eventually he meets up with the acquaintances in his wallet and realizes they’re all horrible crooks; he has no recollection or desire for that crowd. After talking with his new girlfriend, he resolves to pretend to be the person so he can foil their evil plans.

Seems to me that might make a nice mind control story with a little bit of sci-fi - perhaps involuntary mind-control - or the mind playing games - possibly fading in-and-out of memory and amnesia.

What don’t you like about stories that use pre-existing characters? I can see pros and cons, though I can also see how one might consider it a tad lazy?

“Lazy” was not a word that came to mind, but I can see what you mean. By choosing a pre-existing character, the author is relieved of creating the character themselves. Some authors definitely want that, so they can make the character act in ways different from his known background. When the author assumes you know the backstory, I find it makes the characters very empty - they’re merely templates, like a child playing with dolls of known superheros.

Perhaps it’s just my pickiness. For me, the enjoyment of the story comes in part not only by what happens, but with the creation of the characters. I’ve pointed to this story too many times in comments on here, but in Absman420’s story Pollination (NOT the series version!) there’s just a couple of lines, but they go far in depicting a not-too-smart character who is then obviously susceptible to the plant. A known character limits what you can do unless you provide explanation, and if you make that known character step outside what the audience expects of him, one would question why you use him in the first place.

I point to one of the best known stories on this site, rubbrsome’s Brain Feed - of course Dave changes throughout the story, but Jake also changes, becoming more hysterical. It’s almost as much fun watching him evolve as it is watching Dave. You can’t have that sort of unexpected character development when the character is known.

I read a story here. I think it was Kake or something. It was about a man who wandered off the trail into a forest where he finds Jake, the Tom of Finland character naked and tied to a tree. Long and short, the wanderer was Kake, Jakes lover, restored to his form and memory when he puts on the old knee high logging boots he used to wear in the stories. I like yours (and Kakes idea) where magical items make their way into this world and take you home

I sort of like stories that are variants out of ‘Fandom’ themes. I would love a story in the “Once Upon a Time” theme where Prince Charming (David Nolan) winds up getting bare-ass spanked by every other character in the series over one thing or another. Yeah, über kinky, but what can I say :blush:

Should be able to work some mind control into that…and imagine the variants.

Maybe you can implement a curse where the “town” is for some reason split in two sections: “male section” & “female section” that are in war or at least don’t like contact with the other side… and each side could be homo… so in male section all the characters are gay and in female all lesbians. Some main character can be exploring the male section and get to see or gets involved in all the action… and for the females, you can just mention about being in their side, and leave it like that (if you don’t want to write about them)… at least that’s how I set the beginning of the story