The Most Popular Character in 'Once Upon a Time', Ranked

Choose the character you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on May 21, 2024 07:19
Fans of 'Once Upon a Time', a series renowned for its blend of various fairy tale characters, often debate which character steals the show. Ranking these characters by popularity not only fuels engaging discussions but also gives new viewers insights into standout personalities. Such a list helps highlight the characters that have made a significant impact, pulling from a cast that intertwines classic tales with modern twists. By participating in the ranking of these characters, viewers can voice their preferences and see how their favorites stack up against the crowd. This dynamic ranking updates as new votes are cast, reflecting the current sentiment of the fanbase. It's a fun way to see which characters resonate most with the audience while allowing your voice to be heard in a real-time fan-driven showcase.

Who Is the Most Popular Character in 'Once upon a Time'?

  1. 1

    Emma Swan

    The daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming, Emma is the main protagonist who is known as the Savior.
    • Portrayed by: Jennifer Morrison
    • First Appearance: Pilot
  2. 2

    Robin Hood

    A skilled archer and thief, Robin Hood is known for his sense of justice and his romance with Regina Mills.
    • Portrayed by: Sean Maguire
    • First Appearance: Lacey
  3. 3

    Henry Mills

    The adopted son of Regina Mills and the biological son of Emma Swan, Henry is the heart of the family and the truest believer.
    • Portrayed by: Jared S. Gilmore
    • First Appearance: Pilot
  4. 4


    Also known as Mr. Gold, Rumplestiltskin is a complex antihero with a pivotal role throughout the series.
    • Portrayed by: Robert Carlyle
    • First Appearance: Pilot
  5. 5

    Regina Mills

    Also known as the Evil Queen, Regina Mills is a complex character who evolves from a villain to a beloved hero.
    • Portrayed by: Lana Parrilla
    • First Appearance: Pilot
  6. 6

    Snow White

    Known as Mary Margaret Blanchard in Storybrooke, Snow White is a central character with a storied past.
    • Portrayed by: Ginnifer Goodwin
    • First Appearance: Pilot
  7. 7

    Prince Charming

    Also known as David Nolan, Prince Charming is a fearless leader and Snow White's true love.
    • Portrayed by: Josh Dallas
    • First Appearance: Pilot
  8. 8


    Captain Hook, known as Killian Jones, is a notorious pirate who becomes a hero and Emma Swan's love interest.
    • Portrayed by: Colin O'Donoghue
    • First Appearance: The Crocodile
  9. 9


    Belle is known for her love story with Rumplestiltskin and her passion for books and knowledge.
    • Portrayed by: Emilie de Ravin
    • First Appearance: Skin Deep
  10. 10


    Known as the Wicked Witch of the West, Zelena is Regina's half-sister with a tumultuous relationship and a quest for redemption.
    • Portrayed by: Rebecca Mader
    • First Appearance: New York City Serenade

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About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular character in 'Once Upon a Time'. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or character is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 31 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each character once every 24 hours. The rank of each character is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

Additional Information

More about the Most Popular Character in 'Once upon a Time'

Emma Swan
Rank #1 for the most popular character in 'Once Upon a Time': Emma Swan (Source)
Once Upon a Time is a television series that weaves together various fairy tales and myths. It aired from 2011 to 2018 and gained a large following. The show takes place in the fictional town of Storybrooke, where fairy tale characters live in the modern world. They have forgotten their true identities due to a curse.

The most popular character in the series stands out for their complexity and evolution. This character begins as a villain but undergoes significant growth. They struggle with their dark past and strive for redemption. Their journey is compelling and resonates with many viewers.

This character's backstory is rich and detailed. They were once a powerful figure in their original realm. Betrayal and loss shaped their early life, leading them down a dark path. Their motivations are rooted in pain and a desire for control. This depth makes the character more relatable and human.

In Storybrooke, this character plays a central role. They hold a position of power and influence. Their actions drive much of the plot, creating tension and conflict. Despite their flaws, they show moments of kindness and vulnerability. This duality keeps the audience engaged.

The character's relationships are also key to their popularity. They have complex ties with other main characters. These relationships are marked by love, hate, and everything in between. Their interactions are dynamic, adding layers to the story.

Over the seasons, this character faces numerous challenges. They confront their past and make difficult choices. Their journey is one of self-discovery and change. They strive to balance their darker impulses with a desire to do good. This ongoing struggle makes them a fascinating figure.

The character's portrayal by the actor is another reason for their popularity. The performance brings nuance and depth to the role. The actor captures the character's inner conflict and transformation. This portrayal adds to the character's appeal.

Fans of the show often cite this character as a favorite. They appreciate the complexity and growth. The character's story arc is one of the most memorable in the series. It highlights themes of redemption and the possibility of change.

In conclusion, the most popular character in Once Upon a Time is beloved for their intricate backstory, central role, and dynamic relationships. Their journey from villain to a more nuanced figure captivates the audience. The actor's performance enhances this appeal, making the character a standout in the series.

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