Saturday, December 3, 2011

Honeycrisp or Red Delicious? Jiminy Cricket or Jiminy Grasshopper?

Please know that despite these criticisms I am enjoying Once Upon A Time. Yes, I have issues with the series; of course I do. I care about the material very much. That doesn't mean I throw the baby out with the bathwater. By definition I am a fan and enjoy tuning in. I do, however, think that certain things are worth commenting on, especially considering this is a fairy tale blog. I hope all this is understood by other fans and any of the production that may come across this. It's all fantastic fodder for discussion - and about fairy tales, no less!

I know, I know. It's kinda picky but it's bothering me as now I've seen the second more obviously incorrect visual-vs-script I've seen in ABCs Once Upon A Time. (Please know, I'm not looking for these to be critical - they're jumping out at me.) *

My first "visual frowny" came when Regina-aka-Evil-Queen was picking apples from her personal orchard and offered what she called a Honeycrisp to Emma Swan. Except, it wasn't a Honeycrisp. It was a Red Delicious (the difference is obvious to anyone who buys apples regularly). Turns out I'm not the only one who's noticed either. I've seen a few "creased-forehead-posts" around the internet mentioning it, like this one HERE which fellow fairy tale blog readers may have seen).

Here's a visual for you with the comparison:

Source HERE
 See what I mean?

I'll come back to this one in a minute. For now, let's look at the most recent one that caught my eye.

Last week, we saw Archie Hopper (aka Jiminy Cricket) in fairy tale land, both in human form and transformed to... um... and insect. Being very familiar with Disney's Pinocchio, in which Jiminy does vaguely represent a cricket, I was surprised to see human-Jiminy become, what appears very much to be, a grasshopper.

Here's the design by talented artist  Jared Krichevsky for the ABC's series:
Design for Once Upon A Time's Jiminy Cricket-as-insect

It's a little harder to find a strong visual to give you for grasshopper vs cricket but there are many descriptions - like HERE - which outline the differences, including visual ones, clearly. Here's one, which, although is an illustration, shows you most clearly:
Source HERE.
 According to these, we have a nocturnal grasshopper as our Jiminy Cricket, although he does have large cricket eyes.

But back to the apples...

The Jiminy Cricket design aberration is niggly-annoying, I'll admit, as many people confuse crickets with grasshoppers but it's not nearly as annoying as getting food wrong. Why? Because food in fairy tales is very important. I appreciated THIS ARTICLE HERE, titled "Feeding Snow White", by insightful author Paula Young Lee, which also had issues with the Red Delicious-not-Honeycrips being offered Emma Swan, and have had it in my posting queue since before I decided to try blogging again.
Of course, I’m nitpicking—but with a purpose. The apple-breed mix-up is a handy symbol for a larger pattern: Food has always played a surprisingly important role in the Snow White tale, but the significance of that food has been erased over time—and, with it, much of what this seemingly familiar story once meant. Once upon a time, this tale was, in part, about the restoration of rightful royal authority. And you can see that more clearly if you know something about what people used to eat.
 Go on and read the rest of the article. It explains the apples gaff but goes on to talk about how illuminating the 'original' request of the Queen's is in asking for Snow White's organs. You'll be nodding your head and begin to understand why I just HAD to say something.

Oh, and if you like that, you'll like this too: I've had this article bookmarked for many years now but go back and read it often. Considering the dark side of fairy tales are coming to our screens with a vengeance at the moment, it's definitely time for another read through "Snow White," "Sleeping Beauty," "The Juniper Tree," "The Virgin Mary's Child": The Wicked Cannibal Queen.

Enjoy. :)

*One of the things that's annoying me most about this series is actually the lack of research but that's really a different topic and a different post - if that's worth writing at all, since really I'm just so pleased to be tuning into fairy tales twice a week at this point!


  1. Wow! I didn't even notice. But now that you've mentioned these discrepancies, I feel that I can admit that I'm a bit more frustrated at the lack of research, too. My biggest frustration is the constant Disney fairy tale referencing rather than the original folk/fairy tales. Disney really owns everything, now. :/

  2. So glad I'm not the only one complaining about this show's carelessness with details, although I hadn't even thought of the cricket/grasshopper thing until you mentioned it! As soon as I read the title of your post, I smacked my forehead and said, "How did I not catch that?!"

    I think of crickets as black and grasshoppers as brown or green with longer bodies, but perhaps that's not necessarily true everywhere.

    One could argue that because the show is based off of Disney versions, they made him look more like the cartoon Jiminy Cricket, who isn't very Cricket-like at all.

  3. Oh no, the link isn't working for the apple gaffe.

  4. @Renee of the Fae - the lack of research! Argh! Yes! (And for really basic things too.
    Disney owns ABC so while I'm not surprised at all the references am I kind of surprised that there seems to be very little, if any, "historical tale" input on the Disney characters. Big opportunity missed there IMHO but it's still early days. Maybe people looking up the original tales - since there IS quite a bit of aberration from the Disney versions and people are discovering the early tales all over again - will encourage the writers to dig a little deeper. But, as I said - it's early days and it's the 1st season. Curious about how this aspect of things will develop (hopefully it will).

    @Tahlia Details, details - yes - continuing annoyance - except with internal decor/decorating. There are some very nice touches there. Re Jiminy (that always looks like it's spelled incorrectly!) I still think the animated Jiminy looks more like a cricket than the live OUAT one! (eyeroll)

    @Kelley Link fixed - thanks! (It's the same as the above link but just put there again to encourage you to click through and read). :)

  5. I work in a grocery store. As soon as she said the word "honeycrisp" (which sell for like 60 cents more per apple because they're amazing) and I saw what was in the basket in her hands, I started to hopehopehope that she wasn't going to claim that what was in the basket were honeycrisps.
    And then she did.

  6. What about when Mary Margaret Blanchard was teaching a class on how to make bluebird houses and was clearly holding a blue parrot-like bird, not a bluebird. That's what bugged me first, then the apple... wonder if they do this sort of foolishness SO THAT people blog about it...

  7. I didn't think that the parrot-like bird could be a bluebird since I was pretty sure bluebirds are either wrens or thrushes (they're thrushes), but I got the apple gaffe right away being from Minnesota where the Honeycrisp was first cultivated.

    Surely, with all the special effects (and they are wonderful!) they could have sprung for some aluminum chainmail instead of woolen knits sprayed with silver paint!

    And I wonder how many of the cast have caught pneumonia over the years, since many or most of the outdoor scenes appear to have been shot in winter or early spring! "Anything for art" must have taken on a whole new meaning!

  8. I just started watching this show, and I've been harping about the apples all morning to my sister. I can't believe they didn't bother to get the right variety. I like the show so far, though.

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