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Friday, September 20, 2013

Sleepy Hollow Debut: Sleepers, Dollar Bills, and Witches

A pretty good debut of Sleepy Hollow on Fox last Monday, with a story that in effect combines two Washington Irvington characters, the sleeper Rip Van Winkle and the headless-horseman-fighting Icabod Crane.  There's a time-jumping from the Revolutionary War to present - via witches' spells - clever depictions of a man from the past suddenly appearing in our day and age, good locale, and some good action as well.

If anything partaking of time travel, including just deep sleep for centuries, is a big plus in my book, anything partaking of witches usually is not.  I'm also no fan of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and death personified - which would be the headless horseman in this series - but the time jump and my proximity to the town of Sleepy Hollow in the real world are tipping the balance, at least for now.

Icabod's sudden immersion in our current world is handled well.  A dollar bill with Washington's picture - George not Irving - goes a long way to convince him he's here.   His reactions to women wearing trousers, African-Americans working for the police - he was against slavery even in his own time, he tells us - get the story off to a nice start.   So does Abbie his partner,  who has a hint of chemistry with Icabod.

Judging by the first episode, this looks to be a series in which major characters will be dropping like flies - an approach to television first introduced back in the 1980s in the short-lived V series (sequel to the several mini-series).   Three major characters were dispatched by the headless horseman, at the beginning, the middle, and the end of this first hour.   We'll see whether this will be a hallmark of the series or just a clearing of the deck for the first episode.

The shots of the Hudson and the Tappanzee Bridge are good.   The bridge in reality is scheduled to be torn down and replaced.  It will be interesting to see how Sleepy Hollow handles that - assuming it lasts that long, which I at this point sorta hope it does.


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