We wonder whether or not “Once Upon a Time” co-showrunners Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz are starting to finally get accustomed to all of the demands that they find the perfect person to play the Little Mermaid Ariel yet. We’ve followed the show religiously since the beginning, caught every episode, and even groaned when they did things that we didn’t quite like (see some of those early standalone hours), and we don’t think there has been a character as in-demand as she is.
So what is the problem holding her back from appearing? Well to be honest, there are many. You have to not only find the right place in the story for an Ariel appearance, but something that is financially responsible. Translation: We can’t think that an episode set underwater would be particularly cheap unless the effects were terrible.
Nonetheless, the season 2 finale clearly put the showrunners in a position where Ariel could turn up in Neverland, and based on what Kitsis said to Entertainment Weekly recently, the character’s debut may be closer to happening than it ever has before:
“Obviously Neverland brings up mermaids and it brings up fairies … We have ideas for Ariel. When we introduce her is up in the air because we’re still figuring out what we want to do. There’s a possibility we’ll see her. [She’s] one of our favorite characters … if and when we do it, we just want to make sure we do it right.”
We can probably all agree that this character will surface eventually, but she will not be the #1 priority for the show when it picks up in the fall. That instead will probably be introducing Peter Pan, who actually has a more relevant role in the storytelling right now.
Who do you want sporting a set of fins, and possibly singing songs with various sea creatures? (Okay, the character’s appearance will probably not be so literal.) We have more details on the Pan casting process and the state of that over at the link here.