I like this show a lot. We watch it every week. But it's a really maddening show, because there are times it's so wonderfully written (thank God they've got Jane Espenson on the staff), and other when it is so...not (too bad they can't clone Jane Espenson).
:: Snow White / Mary Margaret is kind of irritating. She reminds me of the way Mary Ingalls was always depicted in the Little House books: insufferably good. The current storyline, of forcing her to do evil, could be interesting, but so far all they can figure out what to do is have her roll around in bed as she processes her existential crisis.
:: Regina / The Evil Queen is, by far, the most interesting character on the show. And Lana Parrilla plays her magnificently. She's the most three-dimensional character on the show, and Parrilla captures that beautifully.
:: The next most interesting character on the show? Robert Carlyle's Mr. Gold / Rumpelstiltskin. He seems to get the best lines, and so far, the writers have managed to keep him treading the line between good and evil in exactly the way a good Trickster character is supposed to do.
:: Come to think of it: Lana Parrilla will sadly be too old to play one of the Princesses when the totally inevitable movie of Princesses In SPACE!!! (not the actual title) gets made, which gives me a sad, because frankly, she'd be perfect for the older of the two. She has a very expressive face and a lot of range as an actress. (As opposed to Ginnifer Goodwin, who as Mary Margaret / Snow White seems to only have two expressions: happy smile and sad smile.) Robert Carlyle has a part waiting for him, too.
:: The worst character, by far, no competition, is Captain Hook. He is awful. The guy exudes zero menace, his sexual innuendos are embarrassing since he has no charisma or chemistry at all with anybody, he only serves to show up at inopportune moments to do something evil, and then he invariably gets his ass kicked. Hook isn't a character, he's a plot device, and a badly-acted one at that; every single time he shows up, any energy the show has gets sucked right out. The sooner the writers come to their senses and jettison this guy, the better.
:: I hope they never show August / Pinocchio as an adult wooden guy again. That was one of the creepiest damn things I've ever seen. Made that episode nearly impossible to watch.
:: I like the guy who plays David / Prince Charming, but his lips are distractingly red. Seriously, I've never seen a guy with lips that red before. Every time he's onscreen, at some point during the scene I find myself staring at his lips. And I won't lie -- that makes me feel a little strange.
:: Some of the mining of old stories and folklore is pretty creative. Some of it, though...I don't really know about. The last episode seemed to be going toward some kind of Asian lore, in a Big Trouble in Little China kind of way. I'm not sure where they're going with that.
:: I'm honestly not sure how much longer this show can last -- maybe one more season? My problem is that the worldbuilding feels increasingly tenuous. The town of Storybrooke can't interact with the 'outside' world? Well, OK...but it's a modern town, with all the modern trappings, so how do they get stuff? Where does the food at the store come from? How do they get gas for the vehicles they drive? It's a town, not a separate world.
That's about it. The second season starts winding down tonight...I think there are only three or four episodes left. I wonder how they'll leave things hanging?