alibi online
Free Will AstrologyAlibi's Personals
 V.20 No.44 | November 3 - 9, 2011 

Idiot Box

Once Upon a Crime

“Grimm” on NBC

The second of this TV season’s new, fairy-tale centric dramas is NBC’s “Grimm.” Unlike ABC’s occasionally preposterous and decidedly ungrounded “Once Upon a Time,” NBC’s fantasy series at least has a clear-cut identity. It is, simply put, a standard-issue police procedural ... with monsters. While that might not be as creative a premise as “Once Upon a Time,” it does give the show an easy access point for viewers who might otherwise be put off by a show that requires a major suspension of disbelief and a lot of explanation.

“Grimm” comes to us from some of the people behind “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel”—which is about as good a pedigree as you’re going to get in fantasy/horror television. The series centers around Nick Burckhardt (former MTV “Road Rules” contestant David Giuntoli), a homicide detective in Portland, Ore. During a particularly baffling string of serial killings, Nick learns from his eccentric aunt that he’s the last in a long line of monster hunters known as “Grimms.” (Yes, you could pretty much substitute the word “Slayers” and you’d have the premise of “Buffy.”) In this world, legendary monsters are real, hiding from the sight of mere mortals and wreaking occasional bloody havoc. Only Grimms have the ability to spot these creatures. With his aunt out of the picture (cancer, don’t ya know), it’s up to Nick to find and destroy these monsters-in-disguise (the Portland-based ones, anyway).

Play Youtube Video
“Grimm” is fairly straight-ahead detective fiction with Nick and his police partners investigating the crime of the week. At some point, of course, it becomes clear that trolls or evil fairies or whatever are the guilty party, and it’s up to Nick to stop them. He’s aided in this quest by Eddie Monroe (the colorful Silas Weir Mitchell from “24,” “My Name Is Earl” and “Prison Break”), a “reformed” big bad wolf who wants to atone for his previous sins. The idea here isn’t exactly a world of storybook characters come to life. Unlike “Once Upon a Time,” we aren’t likely to see Cinderella or Pinocchio any time soon. Instead, the idea suggested is that fairy-tale compilers the Brothers Grimm were monster hunters themselves and incorporated many of the creatures they saw into their writings.

The biggest complaint about the show, oddly enough, is that it isn’t quite fairy tale enough. Although the plots superficially resemble classic fables (“Little Red Riding Hood,” “Goldilocks and the Three Bears”), the monsters all seem to have the same generic demon look about them. (Stand them next to the scowling vampire creatures of “Buffy” and you’ll have another match.) A little more imagination in the enemies and a bit more variety in the crime stories and “Grimm” might have something solid. Right now, it lacks a certain ... magic. As it stands, though, it’s an atmospheric crime drama with some creepy horror elements and the occasional funny one-liner—a welcome-enough edition to a slow Friday-night lineup.

“Grimm” airs Friday nights at 8 p.m. on KOB-4.

Tomorrow's Events

Trolleywood at Albuquerque Museum of Art and History


Climb on board a completely-custom, uniquely-Albuquerque, open-air trolley and embark on a tour of locations from movies made in Albuquerque.


New Mexico Labor Film Festival at Center for Progress and Justice


Better Call Saul Watch Party at Tractor Brewing Wells Park

More Recommended Events ››

  • Select sidebar boxes to add below. You can also click and drag to rearrange the boxes; close using the little X icons on each box. To re-add a box you closed, return to this menu.
  • Because you are not logged in, any changes you make to these boxes will vanish as soon as you click to another page. If you log in, the boxes will stick.
  • Latest Posts
  • Web Exclusives
  • Recent Classifieds
  • Latest User Posts
  • Most Active Users
  • Most Active Stories
  • Calendar Comments
  • Upcoming Alibi Picks
  • Albuquerque
  • Duke City Fix
  • Albuquerque Beer Scene
  • What's Wrong With This Picture?
  • Reddit Albuquerque
  • ABQ Journal Metro
  • ABQrising
  • ABQ Journal Latest News
  • Albuquerque
  • NM and the West
  • New Mexico FBIHOP
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • Only in New Mexico
  • Mario Burgos
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • High Country News
  • El Grito
  • NM Politics with Joe Monahan
  • Stephen W. Terrell's Web Log
  • The Net Is Vast and Infinite
  • Slashdot
  • Freedom to Tinker
  • Is there a feed that should be on this list? Tell us about it.