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‘Sleepy Hollow’ S4 preview: Meet Crane’s new crew

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Is Crane going to lose his head in Season 4? (Photo credit: FOX via Twitter)

 

I guess having a severe case of “Crane on the Brain” even leaves Ichabod with a heavy head in hand, as we can see in this unsettling key art for “Sleepy Hollow” Season 4.

With less than one month to go until “Sleepy Hollow’s” Abbie-less premiere (Friday, Jan. 6 at 9 p.m.), FOX gifts fans with this doozy of a teaser. Ichabod Crane (Tom Mison) has lost his head! Yet he will continue to “Carry on.” It is a fitting illustration given some of the fandom’s reaction to the show’s tumultuous third season.

The series, Ichabod, and fans will enter a new terrain when “Sleepy Hollow” returns. The team has tragically lost Abbie Mills (Nicole Beharie) and Joe Corbin (Zach Appelman).  Ichabod has been recruited by George Washington’s secret agency, so he will now be fighting the supernatural and revealing twistory in our nation’s capital, Washington D.C. That likely explains why Jessica Camacho, Lance Gross and Nikki Reed are no longer series regulars. Sophie Foster and Daniel Reynolds probably don’t have the necessary clearance for Crane’s new line of work. And, let’s face it, Betsy Ross is old news at this point. However, we can find comfort in knowing that Jenny Mills (Lyndie Greenwood) is sticking around. Phew! Here’s our first look at Crane’s Crew:

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SLEEPY HOLLOW: L-R: Janina Gavankar, Jerry MacKinnon, Tom Mison, Rachel Melvin and Lyndie Greenwood. SLEEPY HOLLOW Season Four premieres Friday, Jan. 6 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2017 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Mathieu Young/FOX.

Let’s break it down and meet the newbies, shall we?

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SLEEPY HOLLOW: Janina Gavankar. SLEEPY HOLLOW Season Four premieres Friday, Jan. 6 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2017 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Mathieu Young/FOX.

Janina Gavankar joins the series as Diana, a Homeland Security agent working closely with Crane. TVLine originally described her as:

“A single mom and former military officer who’s currently a Special Agent for Homeland Security. She’s got a tough, take-charge personality, punctuated by a wry sense of humor. She also has a softer, more caring side which emerges when she’s with her young daughter. Initially she doesn’t believe in the supernatural, and that creates conflicts with Crane. They also clash because they have different ways of approaching missions: While he’s methodical and research-focused, she’s active and task-oriented, which is reflective of her military training.

She rarely talks about the father of her child — a person she cared for, even though she never saw a life together with him — but she’s fiercely devoted to her daughter and will do anything to protect her, an instinct Crane appreciates. After her partner goes down in the line of duty, she and Crane will find common ground in their shared sense of loss. And the two of them will quickly realize they have another important point of connection — though not one anyone would expect at first.”

Given the teasers we’ve seen and little hints dropped along the way, one theory among Sleepy Heads is that Diana’s daughter, Molly (played by Oona Yaffe) could be the new Witness. Molly could be the reason Ichabod and Diana share an “unexpected” connection. Some fans shrug at the idea of a child Witness, but I still think it would be better than a potential/forced love interest. Let’s face it, there’s no replacing Abbie or Ichabbie. It would be hard to stomach seeing Ichabod grow emotionally intimate with a new woman, especially if said woman just happens to be his Witness soulmate. However, we wouldn’t mind seeing Ichabod adorably bond with a little girl. Right?

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SLEEPY HOLLOW: Oona Yaffe. SLEEPY HOLLOW Season Four premieres Friday, Jan. 6 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2017 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Mathieu Young/FOX.

Speaking of Molly, here’s what Deadline had to reveal about the potential new Witness and other newcomers:

“Molly…bright and poised ten-year-old…creative (she’s got a talent for art) as well as athletic (she’s a standout in soccer), and she has a maturity beyond her years. Part of that comes from her mom, who’s always taught her to be strong and independent, and part of it comes from having grown up as the child of a single parent. She’s often been in situations where she’s had to fend for herself. But none of that has dampened her natural curiosity about the world; she sees herself as an explorer at heart—an instinct that quickly bonds her with Crane.”

First off, who wouldn’t be instantly taken with Crane? Of course she’s going to bond with a man who embodies mystery, adventure, and chivalry. But we know there has to be more than that to their bond. Maybe we aren’t giving “Sleepy Hollow” enough credit by assuming she is the new Witness. Perhaps Molly will be the key in helping Ichabod in his quest for his new counterpart. We’ll find out soon enough, but we know there must be something special about this mother-daughter duo and we are very curious to discover what that is. At the very least, these character descriptions imply that “Sleepy Hollow” is bringing in complex and layered female characters. That is always a good thing, so we’re keeping our hopes high for this seemingly smart and nuanced pair.

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SLEEPY HOLLOW: Jerry MacKinnon. SLEEPY HOLLOW Season Four premieres Friday, Jan. 6 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2017 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Mathieu Young/FOX.

A couple of fellow braniacs round out Crane’s crew: Jake Wells (Jerry MacKinnon) and Alex Norwood (Rachel Melvin). Here’s their deal, according to Deadline:

“Jake Wells, an endearingly eager but slightly obsessive research analyst who works in a forgotten federal archive cataloguing reports of supernatural activity. Even though he’s been relegated to the fringes, Jake enjoys what he does since he’s had a lifelong fascination with unexplained phenomena and weird fringe theories. But his interests have always left him somewhat isolated, which is why meeting Crane changes Jake’s life. For one thing, Crane proves to him that all the weird and wacky stuff he’s been documenting is actually true. But just as importantly, Crane becomes both a mentor figure for Jake as well as a much-needed friend.”

Awww, so we know Crane finds a welcoming buddy in Jake. This guy sounds like the perfect candidate for “Supernatural’s” The Men of Letters or “The X-Files.” I’m sure we’ll see Jake and Ichabod try to out “know-it-all” each other. It will also be interesting to learn how much Jake really knows about the supernatural. Could he have insights on Crane’s mission as a Witness? Provide leads on where the new Witness can be found? He sounds like a valuable asset for Ichabod and Jenny. But Jake doesn’t work alone in the archives.

Alex is “a self-taught engineering prodigy who works alongside Jake in the

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SLEEPY HOLLOW: Rachel Melvin. SLEEPY HOLLOW Season Four premieres Friday, Jan. 6 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2017 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Mathieu Young/FOX.

supernatural archives. Whereas Jake handles information and news, Alex is all about artifacts and machines. She has the ability to break down the most complex problems to its simplest components, a talent that gives her the ability to improvise weapons and gadgets when needed. Never formally educated, she gained her skills through real-world experiences. Her direct and bracingly candid attitude seems designed to keep people at arm’s length. But once she trusts you and lets you into her inner circle, she’s loyal to a fault.”

Again, it sounds like Team Witness has found another useful asset. Alex seems to have MacGyver skills in the field, which can come in very handy when up against unknown supernatural/magical weaponry. It is difficult to accept change, but Crane will apparently have some perks working in D.C. Sleepy Hollow could not provide him with too many resources. They had to resort to bounty hunters and black market dealings that opened themselves out to a whole lot of evil. Maybe Team Witness will be able to gain the upper hand faster with an agency backing them.

Of course, nothing and no one will ever compare to Abbie and her soul bond with Ichabod. But, I think we should enter the new season with open minds. Last season had more issues than Abbie’s death. Pandora and The Hidden One were not particularly fun foes like Henry, Katrina and Headless/Abraham were. They were downright annoying and overstayed their welcome. Plus, the way they ultimately went out was anti-climactic. Casting already indicates that this season’s villain will be far more entertaining.

According to TVLineJeremy Davies will play Malcolm Dreyfuss, “eccentric and

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SLEEPY HOLLOW: Jeremy Davies in the “Columbia” Season Four premiere episode of SLEEPY HOLLOW airing Friday, Jan. 6 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2017 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Tina Rowden/FOX

outspoken tech mogul who became a billionaire before the age of 30, and has since been seeking other worlds to conquer. In many ways, he is a dark mirror to Tom Mison’s Crane, since he represents capitalism and democracy gone awry — a perversion of the American dream that Crane and the Founding Fathers fought so hard to establish.”

For starters, it it nice to learn that Crane will face-off with a human foe throughout the course of the season. After battling mythical gods and evil forced, it will be a refreshing change of pace. Unless Malcolm turns out to be a disguised deity or working for some new evil power. Whatever the twist, Davies is a stellar actor, so his portrayal should be riveting either way. How and why will Crane fight his foil? Only time will tell.

Given that Malcolm gains his riches by having a control in the tech world, you can’t help but wonder if he has minions working for him, such as a young YouTube sensation. Deadline Deadline reports that “Once Upon A Time’s” Robbie Kay has been cast in a recurring role. He’ll play “Logan MacDonald, a handsome Internet star loved by tween girls around the world — including Molly.” So it appears that wise-beyond-her-years Molly has a weakness. Will she be lured into Logan’s web? Will he pose a supernatural threat that only Team Witness can defeat? We can’t wait to find out!

Well, there you have it, Sleepy Heads! I thought we could all use a handy guide since there are so many changes in store for Season 4. Hopefully this helps you out. What are your first impressions of Crane’s Crew? Please share your thoughts!

It might take some time before we can refer to them as “Team Witness,” but we’ve got to call them something, right? So far, I think the “soft-reboot” looks promising. In the wise words of Ichabod Crane…

have-faith

“Sleepy Hollow” Season 4 premieres Friday, January 6 at 9 p.m. on FOX.

 

UPDATE: Check out my video preview/review of the Season 4 premiere, “Columbia.” Watch it HERE.

 

 

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