One of Fox’s newest offerings for the coming fall season is a twist on classic story called Sleepy Hollow. In an attempt to drum up some fan interest and critical buzz, the show screened its pilot episode during its Friday afternoon Comic Con panel. While so many people waited in vain to get into Hall H for Game of Thrones panel, the group that collected in Ballroom 6A received quite a pleasant surprise.
Aside from a few rather absurd moments in the premiere, the Sleepy Hollow pilot was surprisingly competent. The chemistry from series stars Nicole Behaire and Tom Mison is present right away. This crazy conceit puts them together, but the two leads work well enough together that you can forgive the absurd nature of their unlikely partnership. While I rather enjoyed the pilot, I find it difficult to imagine Sleepy Hollow having a long shelf life on Fox.
As for the panel, a lot of the discussion centered around the inspiration for show. Alex Kurtzman mentioned several different motivations for the show. They really like the idea of having a Rip Van Winkle aspect to the show. They believed it allowed the show to avoid time travel and gives them an opportunity to revisit important aspects of American history. Since this iteration of Ichabod Crane is a soldier in the American army under George Washington, some discussion of the American Revolution is to be expected with this series. The creators really stressed the importance of getting the mythology correct.
Several of the actors were also in attendance, and they were able to share a little bit about their characters. Tom Mison was originally concerned about adapting a beloved character for television, but mentioned he liked the idea of the fish-out-of-water aspect to the story. Nicole Behaire discussed the importance of Abby’s past experiences, and how they will inform her decisions going forward. Orlando Jones was very cryptic about the role of his character, Captain Frank Irving. Sadly, the man getting credit for playing the Headless Horseman was not in attendance. However, several Headless Horseman did make their way into the ballroom.
The creators said the pilot was put together in a very short period of time. They truly should be proud of the work they did. The show has lots of good elements and is worth a look this coming fall.