Icon Heroes Once Upon A Time Ornaments
review by Teresa Martin and Mauri Lazaro
Just in time for the Holidays, Once Upon A Time ornaments have been released by Icon Heroes.
The ornaments come in a package perfect for restorage.
The pictures do not do justice to how lovely these pieces are. They are metal, die cut, have a good weight, and approximately 3 inches. The graphics are sharp and the colors stark.
One of the immediate delights in this set is that it features Henry, the character often overlooked in many other Once products.
The ornaments also provide fun opportunites for mixing with corresponding Disney characters and creating Once themes.
The Stiltskin family:
Are these ornaments worth buying? Yes! And considering the quality, the $49.99 price is reasonable. Oncers can enjoy these on their trees this season and for many to come.
Purchase the ornaments here
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By Amy Hood- @AmyLia403
Oncers were thrilled when Funko put out their line of Once Upon a Time Pops, which currently include Regina, Emma, Hook, Snow, Charming and Rumple. There was an exclusive Regina put out at San Diego Comic-Con last year and the sounds of disappointment could be heard around the world when we realized how hard it was to get one! Well Evil Regals and Pop addicts, there is a NEW Regina Funko POP, and she is only available at BoxLunch Gifts (in store and Online until she sells out!)
If you've never heard of BoxLunch Gifts, (@BoxLunchGifts on Twitter) they are a growing company with a cause. Think all of your favorite Geeky things in one store. Sort of a Hot Topic/ThinkGeek shop meets charity. BoxLunch Gifts donates funds for meals to Feeding America. Every $10 you spend, they will donate a meal. As an added bonus for you AND Feeding America, if you sign up for the BoxLunch Gifts newsletter online, you get a 25% off coupon and they donate one meal just because you signed up! This Regina is fantastic so grab her up while you can! Now, lets take a look at her up close...
by Ashley Benson - @MitigatedText
In the beginning of May, hundreds of die-hard Oncers gathered in Schaumburg IL to participate in one of the first licensed Once Upon a Time conventions in the US. The guest list boasted an impressive lineup and the entire affair was watched over by Grumpy himself as Lee Arenberg served as Master of Ceremonies. This event is still fairly new and there are some kinks to be worked out, but it was exciting to see so many fans in one place for one purpose. Many of the attendees I spoke with told me this was their first con and I hope Creation Entertainment’s event served as a gateway to the con world for many fans.
Review by Teresa Martin (@Teresa__Martin)
I knew that a Rumplestiltskin Daggerletter-opener by Icon Heroes would be a lot of fun, but I was not prepared for how aesthetically pleasing it would be. The details from blade-to hilt are replicated accurately.
Once Upon A Time In Disney World
by Mia Bennet
As Once Upon a Time goes into its 5th season, it continues to become increasingly more popular at Walt Disney World, Florida. I visit Disney World continuously, and I'm always on the lookout for anything Once Upon a Time related. Since 2011, Disney World has put up Once posters in their bus headers, parks, and the Transportation and Ticket Center where guests load onto monorails and buses. These draw attention and many people are spotted taking their picture in front of them. The posters that I have seen include Season One posters of Emma, Snow, and Rumple, Elsa, and since July 2015, the classic poster of Regina's eyes with the red apple.
My Day with Emilie de Ravin
by Mia Bennet--@must_be_mia1
Scrolling though Twitter and seeing a post from Florida Supercon announcing that Emilie de Ravin would be attending was like a dream come true. I immediately knew that I wanted to attend. After many years of watching her in interviews and as Belle in Once Upon A Time, I knew that it would be a chance that I wouldn't want to miss. She seems so warmhearted and down-to-earth, and when I'm given the possibility to meet cast members, I jump at the opportunity. Luckily, my mom and I scored tickets and we attended the con on the 26th of June.
Review by Ashley Benson - @MitigatedText
It’s that time of the year again, time for nerds and geeks of every shape and size to flock to the West Coast in search of spoilers, swag, and sunburn. It’s San Diego Comic Con. And of course among these fans are Oncers, taking advantage of this year’s Once Upon a Time offerings. There were a variety of events, both within the walls of Comic Con and outside them, that captured the interests of OUAT fans and I have the pleasure of participating in a few of them during my adventures in San Diego.
I arrived early in the week to beat the rush as San Diego Comic Con, or SDCC for short, boasts an impressive 130,000 plus attendees each year. So it behooved me to get in town early and avoid long lines checking into the hotel. I was also keen on getting a good look at the wraps on the side of Petco Park. Each year ABC dominates the space with advertisements, mostly for Once Upon a Time, and this year was no exception. Grimly looming over the Hall H line was the Dark Swan herself. On the gloomy grey day I first encountered this ad, I have to say it was a bit intimidating to stand under it and have those black eyelash wings stare at me.
While the emphasis in the advertising was on the Dark Swan this year, the ABC booth, which has had Once Upon a Time elements in past years, took a different route for SDCC 2015, focusing on the upcoming Muppets TV show. Con attendees were ushered into Stage 2 and the set of “Up Late with Miss Piggy” where they watched a short promo for The Muppets on the “studio” monitors before being invited to sit at the ABC photo booth. Through the magic of technology, guests would get a set of four photos taken with a random muppet, though sometimes the Evil Queen would sneak in the frame. Taking a goofy or memorable photo and tweeting it out using the hashtag #themuppets or #onceuponatime was the only way con goers could receive a ticket to the autograph signing for either show. This essentially replaced the pin situation from former years and while the OUAT element was still rare, the lines were shorter for the booth this year, making the odds better to get a photo with the Evil Queen. Plus, the photos were a fun, customized souvenir!
The third week of June has become the established time that Oncers from all over the world gather in Paris, France, for two days of the Fairy Tales Conventions. It was my second time attending this Xivents event and it did not disappoint.
I arrived in Paris two days before Fairy Tales III began, giving me plenty of time to check into the hotel and visit a few locations that have personal meaning to me. The venue for the convention was Les Esselieres in Villejuif, a ten minute walk from the metro station, and a five minute walk from La Ferme des Barmonts, a hotel where many of us stayed. Thus it was easy to trek over to pick up passes on Friday afternoon.
Here began the first snag in the event. They were late opening and the line creeped, only letting people in five at a time. Because of the heat and lack of shade in a very long wait, I chose to go back to the hotel and wait until 6pm when it would be cooler. The line-time average was two hours; it was made pleasant though by starting conversations with those around me, introducing ourselves and sharing our love of Once. Many wonderful Oncers also helped me practice my limited French-speaking abilities. I was also thrilled to reconnect here with many of the friends I met last year and to meet in person Twitter friends.
The first day of the event, I woke early and was glad that I took the time to pick up my pass the night before. There was quite a long line and many I believe did not make it in for the first panel. And the panels! The Frozen cast opened up the con and it was a great start. The format was Q and A and there were many highlights as they bantered about bringing Frozen to life, the costumes, and their favorite moments. You could tell that they really enjoyed being on OUAT. Seeing them was one of my favorite parts of the con. As much fun as the Frozen panel was, the second, with Jennifer, Meghan and Colin, brought the house down before it even started. For many, myself included, this was the first time seeing the three actors in person, and people were on their feet cheering before they even entered the room. I was right along with them, so thrilled especially to finally see Jennifer, the woman who plays the iconic center of OUAT. Needless to say, Colin got quite a lot of cheers and screams. And I was so happy to see Meghan, much missed from the show. It was like a reunion. Some around me were in tears as the three took the stage and I was nearly with them. It was just so exciting! The later panels with Victoria and Lana were also hilarious. They had us in stitches. Most moving though was when Jennifer told us that the art, web pages, and articles fans create do not go unnoticed. Then she thanked us for all the love that we pour into OUAT. In response, the audience broke out in a lengthy, thunderous applause. For me it was not just in gratitude for her comments, but also thanking her for giving us the same.
The Spooky Report
By Three Ghouls - Amy (@Amylia403) Ashley (@MitigatedText) and Mauri (@DarkDearieMauri),
Mauri: Another year at Spooky Empire’s May-Hem featuring Halloween Extreme down, I had a blast! On Friday I took advantage of the Brad Dourif and Alex Vincent photo op. Even though Alex is always at Spooky, Brad isn’t, so it was a rare opportunity to get a picture of them together. Then Petey Mongelli, owner of Spooky Empire, had brought his Chucky movie replica doll for the photo, so then you had Alex, Brad, and the Chucky doll photo op. I couldn’t pass that up! I love dolls, and I brought my Mr. Gold/ Rumplestiltskin doll with me because I thought it would make a hilarious picture. Chucky makes a deal with Rumplestiltskin to take over Spooky Empire. The Chucky doll was bigger than I expected. Chucky could have stomped on Rumple. I also got a picture of Rumple with Zoso himself, Brad Dourif. When I met Mr. Dourif he was polite, but reserved. He really didn’t comment much, but when I got my photo op I was first in line and they were still getting set up in the photo room. Brad was standing there and I was maybe a couple of feet from him, and as the girl was putting down a tape line to mark where the line was supposed to stop before you got your picture taken, Mr. Dourif looked down at the tape and commented, “That tape is bright.” And the girl said, “Yes, it’s pink.” Then Brad said, still looking at the tape, “It’s hot.” That’s his humor; dry corny puns. He was so funny. After my photo op I got an autograph from Ernie Hudson. I picked out a picture of him as Poseidon on Once Upon a Time, and had him write the quote from Ghostbusters, the same one that I used for my movie trivia for Once Upon a Time Fans on Facebook. “If someone asks you if you’re a god you say, “YES!” He laughed while he was writing it down. Then I got an autograph from Kathy Najimy, and her handler remembered my purple dress from Enchantacon. After getting my first round of goodies, I spent the rest of the time doing what I like best: taking pictures of everyone in their amazing costumes. I adore all the costumes and there were a lot of great ones this year. My favorites were Seymour and Audrey two because I love Little Shop of Horrors, The Key Master from Ghostbusters, Abraham, from The Walking Dead, and Tucker and Dale from Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil.
Ashley: I had a very unique point of view at this year’s Spooky May-hem as I was a volunteer, or to be more specific, a Media Guest Assistant in the American Horror Story: Freakshow room. I was often seen by fans this weekend traveling to and from events with Rose Siggins who played Legless Suzy on the show. Working so closely with the media guests made me appreciate all the hard work that goes into an event such as Spooky. I really enjoyed my amazing time with Rose Siggins and find that I am grateful we were paired together since she is a truly inspiring, no-nonsense woman and mother. Our conversations over the weekend are something I will always remember.
A Reception Fit for a Queen: Regal Con 2015
by Zach Van Norman
Two concerts. Four Q&A’s. Four parties. Seven panels. Eleven guests. Hundreds of attendees.
This was Regal Con 2015.
A convention created by Roxy Nazari and her team at REN Entertainment, Regal Con 2015 was geared towards ABC’s hit television series Once Upon A Time. And while some of the attending guests have made appearances at other conventions around the country, Regal Con presented a unique opportunity for die-hard Oncers to connect with actors on their favorite show in a more intimate setting.
It all began on Friday morning as attendees arrived at registration to collect their ticket packages, though events weren’t scheduled to begin until the afternoon. I was unable to attend the first panel due to interviews with guests, but was offered the hosting spot for the trivia game, which became a combination of in-depth discussion of Once and a knowledge game about the show; winners were rewarded with autograph tickets. It was a blast hosting the game and guiding a conversation about the show. (Special thanks to Roxy for giving me the opportunity.) The trivia contest was followed by a panel reviewing cosplay, which included an incredible Maleficent costume based on the character’s live-action film appearance. Afterwards were photo ops and autograph sessions, which occupied a few hours of the afternoon.
Review by Gareth Hughes
Following on from the success of Marvel's first Once Upon A Time graphic novel, 'Shadow of the Queen', comes 'Out of The Past', a collection of 4 short stories featuring long established fan favorite characters. Written by OUAT writer and co-executive producer Kalinda Vasquez and Corinna Bechko, all the stories are considered canonical and tie into official show continuity. Though with a show as sprawling in scope as Once, deciphering where in the timeline the stories fit is sometimes like cracking the Enigma Code!
Chapter One: "Dead In The Water"
Art by Pascal Campion
The first chapter focuses on a young Killian Jones and is set prior to his fateful encounter with the Dark One. Killian and his crew are caught in a dangerous storm surge that threatens to tear apart the Jolly Roger. Faced with the destruction of the ship, Killian has no choice but to steer the Jolly Roger into a cursed stretch of water known as the Leviathan Shoals.
Leviathan is a sea monster referenced in the Tanakh, or the Old Testament. The word has become synonymous with any large sea monster or creature. In this version of the tale, the water surrounding the monsters lair is reputed to drive men into madness with horrific visions.
The resulting effects of the water bring a familiar face back into Killian's life, tying into plot strands from season three of the show. Killian's actions during the story once again hint at the hero beneath the pirate, as well as revealing more about how the grief and tragedy of events in his life have impacted him. The outcome of the story is left ambiguous, leaving doubt in both Killian and the readers mind as to whether what he experienced was real or not.
Chapter Two: "Truth & Daggers"
Art by Betsy Peterschmidt
The second story focuses on Belle and Rumple and is set during the early stages of Belle's tenure as a servant within the Dark Castle. The story touches on the sacrifice that Belle made by giving up her freedom to serve at the castle, one aspect being how Belle is now perceived by people within the local village. Many of the villagers are fearful and distrustful of her due to her involvement with Rumple. This plot thread highlights just how isolated Belle is and just how much she has given up. These small moments of realisation to her situation add layers to Belle's character that are sometimes missing from the TV show.
The main thrust of the plot involves her reunion with an old childhood friend, Samuel, who has been gravely injured in the Ogres War. Turning to Rumple for help in nursing her friend back to health, Belle soon discovers that all is not what it seems with Samuel.
"Truth and Daggers" is a playful, fun little story which also explains how Rumplestiltskin came to be in possession of Pandora's Box, once again tying into season three continuity.
By Ashley Benson
Convention season has started early this year. This past weekend fans of all fandoms flocked to Miami for the very first Magic City Comic Con. Even though this was a first year con, it certainly didn’t feel like one. This has to do with the fact that the folks who ran this con are also responsible for Florida Super Con and Animate! Miami. So the convention was in good hands and from where I stood ran very smoothly.
For fans of Once Upon a Time, this convention offered the opportunity to get up close and personal with a number of fan favorites, including Sean Maguire, Lee Arenberg, and Robbie Kay. This convention also marked the first appearance of Christie Laing at a fan event. Unfortunately, there were also last minute cancelations. Georgina Haig, our very own Once Upon a Time Elsa, was set to appear and there was much excitement surrounding this considering it would be her first convention. However, she had to cancel at the very last minute due to filming obligations. Very lucky for us fans, the wicked Rebecca Mader stepped up and filled in for her.
At this convention I saw very unique set-ups in terms of photo ops and panels. Both were actually in the same room, a large ballroom with the panel seating on one end and the photo ops and attendee registration at the other. I actually enjoyed this set-up because if you had a photo op time that conflicted with a panel, it was possible to listen to the panel while you waited in line. This also allowed for guests to crash each other’s panels, which definitely happened in the case of Once Upon a Time. The panels were also open, so you could come and go as you pleased. There wasn’t any pressure regarding getting seats or missing any of the action that sometimes happens with cons.
Aside from the photo ops, our Once Upon a Time guests were available in the autograph area to sign photos and take selfies. But the highlights of the convention for Oncers were the panels. There was one every day which allowed single day attendees to get in on some of the OUaT action. We had a panel with Sean Maguire and Christie Laing, one with just Rebecca Mader, one with the entire cast of attendees, and one that featured Robbie Kay. This final panel was my favorite as it was the final Once Upon a Time event and the panel was crashed by Sean, Rebecca, and Christie, making for some of the funniest and memorable moments at the con, as well as a fantastic finale for us attendees.
Months ago we were treated to the announcement that a set of Once Upon a Time trading cards were to be released by Cryptozoic Entertainment. After many date changes and several changes to the box content set up, they have finally arrived. In this Oncer’s opinion they were definitely worth the wait! The cards are absolutely gorgeous visually. The quality of the cards themselves is fantastic. The extras in each box are things any fan would love.
Each box contains a complete base set of 45 cards. For those of you who have collected trading cards in the past, you will appreciate not having to buy multiple boxes and make trades/purchase individual cards just to complete your base set. There are also 2 chase cards, which are special individual character biography cards, in each box. These are random, so there is no way to tell which characters you might get. Where your base set is complete, the chase set of 9 cards is not, so herein lies the “trading” part of the trading cards. The chase cards are called “The Price of Magic” set. I personally love the hunt of trying to complete a set, and the rush you get when you find that one piece you’ve been searching for. If you are incredibly lucky, you might find a sketch card, which are only placed in one out of every 25 boxes.
By Ashley Benson
When I walked into the Marriot hotel the Thursday night before DragonCon, I thought I had gotten my dates mixed up. Everywhere you looked there were fantastic, intricate costumes, intense conversations about the latest episodes of several TV shows, and just general merry making, all before the con even started. My introduction to DragonCon, to seeing the joy in all these attendees, truly showed me the heart of what this convention is all about and that’s the fans.
DragonCon has become a staple of the Atlanta Labor Day weekend for about 28 years now and in that time it’s grown, attendance topping out at about 62,000 people this year. DragonCon is very unique in that it is held between five different host hotels, with programming and vendors in each hotel. I will admit it, I got lost. A lot. Even after attending the media tour, I often would get turned around in crowds and find myself in the Hilton with the gamers when I meant to be in the Hyatt with the comic book artists. However, by the third day I was navigating the skybridges between hotels like a pro.
There was a strong Once Upon a Time presence at this year’s DragonCon, from both cast members and fans, which was fantastic to see. Aside from Rebecca Mader, Robbie Kay, Giancarlo Esposito, Lee Arenburg, Sean Maguire, and Beverley Elliott, who all participated in the numerous OUaT-centric panels, Amy Acker, Emma Caulfield and Kristen Bauer were also in attendance. It was a full house! Each actor was available in the Walk of Fame, which is an autograph area that was open throughout the con. Most fans could walk right up to their favorites’ table and have a little chat while getting a picture signed. There was virtually no wait and the actors were able to be generous with their time, which allowed for many special moments with fans. It was very nice to walk up and say hi or get an autograph and have a quick word without being rushed away. I was fortunate to be able do a few interviews while on site as well, one with Beverley Elliott and the other with Rebecca Mader. Both interviews can be found here and here . It was very nice to take about ten minutes, slow down the day, and talk about the show with two of its actors.
Besides the Walk of Fame, our Once Upon a Time team could be found chatting it up on stage during four different panels that were brought to us fans by the American SciFi and Fantasy Media fantrack. With one panel a day during the length of the convention, there was naturally going to be some repeat questions, but for the most part the fans ran the show, stepping up to the microphone and asking questions ranging from inquiries of characters’ theme songs, to heartfelt reminders of how hugely this show has affected the viewers for the good. The best advantage to having a panel a day was accessibility. I didn’t feel the anxiety I normally do when I try to get into a panel at a con. I knew that here, there would be a seat for me with my fellow Oncers. In addition to these panels with the cast, there were two fan panels that occurred during the week. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend due to conflicts in my schedule, but from what I heard spirited debate and conversation arose from both.
Another huge part of DragonCon is the parade, a showcase for the city of Atlanta of the ingenuity and creativity fans have when it comes to costuming. We Oncers had our own cosplay meet up, and the level of detail and care put into these costumes was astounding. Pictures of DragonCon OUaT costumes can be found here. Cosplay is an essential part of the culture of DragonCon and the parade is the ultimate celebration of that. I actually walked in the parade, dressed as Granny, and was rewarded with a unique perspective. It’s one thing to just say that a community supports a con and another entirely to see that support in the faces of families standing ten rows deep along the city streets, waving at Elsa or Snow White. To look up and see every single level of a parking garage bursting with people hanging over the edge, cheering at the cosplayers below. That image has stayed with me.
The thing that many veteran DragonCon goers stressed to me again and again was that this is a con for fans, by fans. And that showed in my experience in Atlanta. Sure, we were all tired by the end of the holiday weekend, but we were all happy, Oncer and actor alike. This is a convention that actors want to attend and it shows in the positivity and celebration that occurs within those five hotels during those four crazy days. And you better believe I will be back next year.
Ashley is a professional event planner, OUaF Forum Administrator, convention enthusiast, and resident sass master. When she's not tweeting up a storm, Ashley also finds the time to write reviews for Once Upon a Time atSpoilerTV.com. Feel free to contact her at @mitigatedtext
By Ashley Benson
It always baffles me that the biggest pop culture event of the season can pass by in a blur. Four days can seem like only four hours since every minute of San Diego Comic Con is packed with so much to see and do, especially for the dedicated Oncer. Once Upon a Time continued to shine at Comic Con, bringing fans from all over together to celebrate our favorite fairy tale show.
This year ABC decided to branch out from the single show format of their booth and created the ABC Castle, a fan experience that brought SDCC guests up close and personal with several ABC shows. Guests entering the castle could audition for The Quest, sing-a-long with Galavant, or take a photo to commemorate 10 years of Lost. However, the biggest draw this year was once again the pins. A visit to Mr. Gold’s Pawnshop allowed SDCC guests the chance to uncover one of five different show pins, the arguably most sought after being Elsa’s urn from the OUAT episode “There’s No Place Like Home”. If you collected all five pins, you gained entrance to different autograph sessions, including the one for Once Upon a Time. The exclusivity of both the pins and the signing created a similar situation to last year, with fans taking many turns through the ABC Castle in hopes to succeed in earning its treasures. I got very lucky and snagged an OUAT pin on my first go around during Preview Night.