BOOM! Studios debuts 'Sleepy Hollow: Providence'
The wait for new episodes of Sleepy Hollow may still be a few months away, but fans eager for more adventures from Ichabod, Abbie and Jenny won’t be without their favorites for long. BOOM! Studios has officially announced the debut of Sleepy Hollow: Providence, a new comic series by Eric Carrasco with art by Victor Santos. The new comic is a follow-up to the last year’s popular four-issue miniseries from Marguerite Bennett (DC Bombshells) and Jorge Coelho (Polarity), as well as this April’s Sleepy Hollow: Origins one-shot by Mike Johnson.
Released this week, Sleepy Hollow: Providence will tell a new kind of mythological story, one that Carrasco calls “deeply weird.” Having come from the Sleepy Hollow writer’s room, Carrasco brings both an imaginative trove of ideas, as well as a deep enthusiasm forthe show’s characters.
“The great part about this kind of show is that it’s always kind of ripe for the Star Wars expanded universe thing of the novels, the comics, the tie-ins,” Carrasco told EW. “And that was one of my focuses when I went to work on the show. I was an assistant in the writer’s room for season two, and it’s a super hands-on place because there are a lot of sandboxes the show plays in. You’ve got colonial research because of Crane, you’ve got monsters and supernatural magic research to do at the same time, and you’re also keeping track of that sprawling, internal mythology of the show to make sure we don’t self-contradict. I was very into the show bible and doing a lot of research and pitching monsters. That spiraled into me helping on the previous Sleepy Hollow comic book arc that that we were doing, and that’s how I met Dafna Pleban, who is my editor on this.”
While some TV and movie writers struggle with making the jump into comics storytelling, Carrasco admitted he shifted between the mediums pretty seamlessly, thanks to the fact he was working with the same material and characters. “I’m sure that one day I’ll have to do this when I don’t so intimately know the show, and I don’t have input from the writers…and I’m terrified for that day,” he said. “But Marguerite [Bennett] did a fantastic job, and the team and Mike [Johnson] who wrote Sleepy Hollow: Origins have all done a terrific job. They all hit the voices perfectly. I think what I brought to it from the show was just that I had a chance to know where they were going with it. And they were very welcoming about ideas.”
Carrasco teased the story lines for Providence, and said the miniseries would spotlight Jenny Mills, Abbie’s sister, who has been a prominent fixture in the story. “One of the things about the show is you have to keep the train moving a little bit. There’s not a lot of time for tangents,” Carrasco explained. “So there’s a lot of Jenny by necessity showing up with just the right item they need, and you sense that she had to go fight some smugglers or dodge bobby traps or do something really cool to get it. I really wanted to dig deep into the Indiana Jones/Tomb Raider life of Jenny Mills and see her acquire one of those magical objects, and dig into her world just a little bit.”
So, just how much of her world are we digging into? “Jenny goes on one of her acquisition trips,” he said, “and she comes back with this magical object that everyone’s fighting over called The Spike which has supernatural powers — ominous supernatural powers that can be used for evil, with a capital E.” According to Carrasco, she also meets the keeper of The Spike, a mysterious young Amish girl named Emily. Together they bring The Spike back to Sleepy Hollow to Crane and Abbie for safe keeping. “But a biker gang is not far behind,” he said. “It’s a biker gang based out of the U.K. that’s coming after this thing, who wants it really badly, and is willing to kill anyone who gets in their way.”
Carrasco also assured fans that the story will sync with Sleepy‘s upcoming season. “It is totally linked to what’s happening in season 3,” he said. “And we worked with the writers on the show to make sure it jived with their plans for upcoming story lines. It’s actually set just a month after season two ends. The show has this time jump that we’re doing as we go into season 3, so there’s this nice little pocket that we get to fill with this kind of story and expand the universe.”
Familiar faces are bound to pop up, as well, and Carrasco revealed that we’ll see Adam from Adam’s Antiques from season 1. “We’re going to see another face or two from season 2, and then we’re going to see a lot of artifacts and supernatural weapons come back,” he said. “Because we sort of realized our heroes are sitting on top of a lot of powerful objects that they could be taking advantage of to fight their enemies with, you’re going to see them really use those in this arc.” Carrasco also noted that while he wanted to make sure he took care of fans, his goal in creating the comic was two-fold. “We tried very hard on this arc to do two things that are almost contradictory: to make it accessible to people who haven’t even seen the show, but also make it really rewarding and essential for Sleepyheads and the fans,” he said. “Because I asked for a lot of easter eggs for the background of the panel and cameos from people and things in seasons 1 and 2, and Victor [Santos] was lovely and obliging and packed a lot of details into these panels.”
Sleepy Hollow: Providence follows the model of its predecessor, in that the book will span four issues before it wraps up prior to the show’s premiere this fall. “This is an open and shut self-contained mini, and it will have a totally satisfying end,” Carrasco promised. “There are some things that we leave a little bit dangling just in case…not loose ends, just ways we can continue.” Although Carrasco joked he left those loose ends in “for job security,” he’s quick to point out that right now, there are no current plans for another book — as much as he’d love to continue. “I have no ideas, no plans right now and obviously I’m not privy to everything the show’s planning,” he said. “But this will be a fun little four issue.” And by “fun,” Carrasco means he’s taking every opportunity to make the book a must-read.
“There’s some Matt Fraction homages,” Carrasco said. “There’s a pretty clear Matt Fraction homage in issue 2 that he hopefully doesn’t get mad about [laughs] and as with pretty much everything I write, there’s a little tiny Gilmore Girls stealth illusion if you look closely in issue 1.” Carrasco, who called his comic “one part Witness, one part Sons of Anarchy, and one part Gilmore Girls, also noted, “It’s rooted in Amish folklore and in the myth of the Wild Hunt, which is where the bikers come from. So if you’re playing along at home, I feel like you’ll be able to figure it out along with Crane and Abbie. And you’ll be able to spot how we’re doing the magic trick, and how we’re going to pay this all off in the big finale in issue 4.”
Sleepy Hollow: Providence is in comic stores Wed., Aug. 12 and the trade paperback of Sleepy Hollow will be available in late September in comic shops and bookstores. Check out exclusive preview pages from Sleepy Hollow: Providence below.