A Tale Dark & Grimm

a tale dark & grimm tv show





Kristin Smith

TV Series Review

Come, hear the tale of Hansel and Gretel. But listen closely because everything you’ve heard thus far is only a fraction of the full story. Let me tell you what really happened. 

Hansel and Gretel, born of royal blood, were the epitome of beloved children. Each night, their parents would sing songs, tell them stories and tuck them in. They were the most perfect parents in the entire world. 

Until, of course, Hansel and Gretel’s father, the King, beheaded his own children (for no apparent reason) and then sewed their heads back on with a magical thread that somehow brought them back to life. 

After that, as I’m sure you can understand, Hansel and Gretel didn’t really want to live in the same palace as their creepy parents. 

So they escaped. And they journeyed through dark woods, encountered beastly humans, stood up to warlocks and went toe-to-toe with the devil himself–all to try to find the perfect parents. 

A Tale That’s Quite Dark and Quite Grimm

Introducing Netflix’s newest, animated version of Hansel and Gretel: A Tale Dark & Grimm. This TV-Y7 series is both creepy and weirdly dark, which I’m sure you already knew based on the title of the show (and my own subhead above). But let me tell you more. 

The very first episode finds Hansel and Gretel fleeing from their murderous father and meeting a woman who invites them in, feeds them sweets and then tries to kill them by stuffing them in the oven. Old news. But this show takes it a step further. We’re told that the Baker (the woman) began this craze by killing her own baby, eating it, and then developing a “taste” for killing children and baking them into pies. 

And while the series lightens up a bit (as far as the whole beheading and child eating goes) as each episode progresses, there’s still plenty of things parents need to know. 

This series is rated TV-Y7 and is thus present in Netflix’s children’s section. Perhaps it’s because of the animation, but there’s really too many conversations that revolve around blood and death, and then actual death itself, for this rating to feel suitable.  

And although this show slightly brightens through some episodes, has a happy ending and makes the point that there’s no such thing as a perfect family, it still leans on violence and shows the twins meeting witches, warlocks and even the Devil himself.

Episode Reviews

Oct. 8, 2021: “Chapter the First: Hansel and Gretel.”

Hansel and Gretel’s father, the King, beheads the twins and then sews their heads back on with a magical thread which brings them back to life. Afterward, Hansel and Gretel escape from their kingdom in search of the perfect parents. 

We see the King behead the twins, but as a shadowed puppet from afar (that means that while there is no blood, there is certainly talk of blood). A narrator shares the story of the Baker, a woman who had her own baby, then killed it and ate it. She then thirsted for the taste of children and killed many afterward and baked them into pies. Hansel and Gretel find a child’s shoe in the closet with a foot still remaining inside. The Baker is genuinely creepy, chases the children with a cleaver and talks often of death. The Baker falls from a second story window and is impaled by a candy cane. 

Hansel and Gretel encounter creepy creatures and dangerous wolves in the woods. Hansel asks Gretel, before they’re attacked, “would you rather die awake or in your sleep?” A crow narrator asks the audience if they’re too scared to continue watching the show, even as he goes into how death usually includes blood.

Hansel cries multiple times when he thinks of how he loves his parents but feels unloved. Gretel, on the other hand, tells Hansel to bottle up his feelings and burn them. The Baker tells the children that their parents never loved them.

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Kristin Smith

Kristin Smith joined the Plugged In team in 2017. Formerly a Spanish and English teacher, Kristin loves reading literature and eating authentic Mexican tacos. She and her husband, Eddy, love raising their children Judah and Selah. Kristin also has a deep affection for coffee, music, her dog (Cali) and cat (Aslan).

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