Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Sketch-a-Week: Give Us the Hook!

I'm a big fan of the show Once Upon a Time, so I was really excited when I saw that they put Captain Hook in it. I was excited... until I saw what they did to Hook. He became a pretty-boy with a sleezy attitude and a dumb sense of humor. Forget the elegant, somewhat homicidal, gentleman pirate captain you're familiar with. They renamed him, made him much younger, cut his hair, and took all the menacing crazy out of him. This is like Hook Light, and I'm not happy. But would you be if one of your favorite storybook villains became a watered-down, womanizing lackey?

Perhaps one of the reasons I had trouble with Once Upon a Time's version of Hook was that I'd already seen this:

Jason Isaacs fit the role of the slippery, devilish, handsome, maniacal pirate like no other. And no other followed until the role was adapted later in the miniseries Neverland. It's a prequel to the story of Peter Pan that won me over completely.

Neverland's Hook, played by Rhys Ifaan, was surly, half-cocked and brilliantly low-down. I would call that man captain, for sure - especially with two guns pointed at me.

And who could forget Dustin Hoffman in the movie with the wonderfully succinct title (Hook)? Poncy, vain, and comically sinister, much like Disney's Captain Hook. As Hook, I thought he was spot-on.

These varied portrayals of Captain Hook prove two things to me: he doesn't need to be pretty to be charismatic and appealing, but he does need to be himself. I guess there just wasn't room for Hook's real personality in Once Upon a Time. His role took a backseat to the evil queens and Rumplestiltskin, leaving only one male villain for me to admire.

I've since resigned myself to the fact that the Hook in Once Upon a Time isn't the same Captain Hook from J.M. Barrie's novel. But I can't stop imagining what it would look like if the real James T. Hook did show up as a younger version of himself.

Yep, that's about what it would look like.

I even found a perfect soundtrack to listen to while drawing his piratey badness. Nox Arcana's album Phantoms of the High Seas, specifically this song:

Does anyone else feel the same way I do about this particular pirate captain?


  1. I totally agree! I was so disappointed to see what they did with Hook! I both love once upon a time, and the sinister Captain in Barrie's novel and in Hogan's movie. Hook is not a bad character in OUAT, he's not HOOK, that's all.

  2. Hook in Once Upon A Time looks like one of the bachelors about to accept a rose (bleh). I'm finding many of ABC's more dramatic shows (Ravenwood, Pretty Little Liars, whatever that show is with a teen boy accused of a crime he didn't commit) at times have great ideas, some decent casting for certain people, and then the rest of the people just "blend in", even those meant to stand out. They end up looking nearly alike or too similar. (Eyes, nose, features, not necessarily hair color and overall look.) You feel as though you're looking at someone's entire family or a town of cousins, not a varied cast of actors with various personalities and acting abilities. Not as if I have casting talents or expertise, just an observant eye and too much disappointment with what a character could have been, "if only."

    Your Hook is far more believable. He could never have tried out for a boy band...or even wanted a ticket to see one in concert! He looks like a man of distinction ^_^.

    What do you think of Peter Pan (in OUAT)?


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