SLEEPY HOLLOW Returns, But What Can Fans Expect From Another Soft Reboot?
Ichabod crane is all of us in Sleepy Hollow’s Season 4 premiere (ie. a bit sad and lost without Nicole Beharie’s Abbie Mills).
The new season, comprising 13 episodes, kicks off on January 6th, but is it the show’s final curtain call? Speaking at an Upfront press call back in may, FOX boss Dana Walden commented “We are not announcing a final season. We are not sure if it’s a final season.”
Clearly the Network is testing the waters with these new episodes, an unsurprising move given the strong fan backlash following Beharie’s departure from the show earlier this year. Will fans continue to tune in to a show minus its co-lead? Will Ichabod vanquish the forces of evil or will Abbie’s death prove one tribulation too many?
Much may depend on how familiar (or different) the format looks and feels to fans this season. With the additional exits of Zach Appleman and Nikki Reed, accompanied by season 3’s villains Shannyn Sossamon and Peter Mensah, a soft reboot was necessary, if only to give Ichabod someone to talk to this Winter.
What does this reboot mean for the theme and tone of show and its characters going forward? Let’s break down what’s different vs what remains the same.
Who Are These New People Anyway?
A collection of new characters gives Ichabod someone to talk to and bond with as he tackles new forces of evil this season.
Season 3 ended with Abbie’s soul in the wind, searching for some place, or rather some one to call home. Season 4 will see Ichabod and Abbie’s wandering soul colliding in Washington DC, where we will meet a collection of new heroes and villains.
Jake and Alex: This nerdy duo share an easy rapport and a love of all things ancient and creepy. Jake (Jerry MacKinnon) is the Mulder to Alex’s (Rachel Melvin) Scully. While Alex is at home tinkering with machines and ancient artifacts (sometimes sneaking them in through the back door to avoid security), Jake is the master of news and information. In fact, Jake has made it his mission to learn everything about Ichabod Crane and all previous goings on in Sleepy Hollow, so much so, he’s become an unabashed fan of Crane’s.
Equally enthusiastic (but perhaps less so with Crane), Alex is more at home with things she can see and touch than those of a supernatural flavor. Is it just us or is there a touch of Kate McKinnon’s Holtzmann in this character? (It’s not just us.)
Together Jake and Alex form the backbone of George Washington’s secret government agency, dedicated to investigating threats of the supernatural variety. Of course, until Ichabod showed up, there haven’t really been too many…
Malcom Dreyfuss: Season 4’s villain is a little unlike any we’ve seen before on Sleepy Hollow. Part Steve Jobs, part demon-raising psycho, Dreyfyss (Jermey Davis) is a laser-focused tech billionaire with a head of unruly nerd hair and a penchant for casting spells in the basement of his HQ. His closest employees also have some disturbing supernatural abilities. This may be the first time a Sleepy Hollow villain has made us want to laugh while shivering in revulsion.
Diana Thomas: Diana (Janina Gavankar), is straight talking agent from Homeland Security, who likes a man to be a man. Failed previous relationships include a blind date with a Katy Perry-loving vegan. Of course, the real reason Diana is alone probably has less to do with the Katy Perry-loving vegan and more to do with the fact that she doesn’t like new people. Or change. (Better buckle up, Diana. Things are about to get … changey!) Diana is also a single mom of one whose daughter has recently developed a worrying condition that may or may not be linked to Abbie’s death. Or Ichabod’s arrival. Or Dreyfuss’ plans. We’re not sure just yet.
Jenny Mills: Lyndie Greenwood’s Jenny Mills is back, and in case we were in any doubt, we will be reminded of her demon ass-kicking abilities right from the premiere episode. There’s a sadness to Jenny this season. She accepts that Abbie is not coming back, and wonders if her soul has come to rest in another witness.