Fairytale TV: Syfy gets in on the magic with Neverland
Retro TV shows and reboots looked to be all the rage this season, but fantasies and fairytales have proven to be the dark horses set to win the Fall 2011 ratings race. Now, Syfy is getting in on the magic.
While Charlie's Angels and The Playboy Club crashed and burned right out of the gate, fantastical hybrids Grimm and Once Upon a Time have been ratings magic this fall. Now, Syfy is getting its own sprinkling of fairy dust with the mini-series Neverland, an origins tale that goes back to a time before Peter Pan (Charlie Rowe), Capt. Hook (Rhys Ifans) and The Lost Boys knew Tinker Bell (Keira Knightley), pirates Smee (Bob Hoskins), Elizabeth Bonny (Anna Friel) and Starkey (Cas Anvar), or the magical land they inhabit.
Syfy's upcoming two-night movie event, which premieres Dec. 4-5, couldn't come at a better time. Primetime's fairytale reboots are ruling their time slots this season, with NBC's Grimm even beating out CSI: NY and Fringe this week. Once Upon a Time has also had a magical start and while it couldn't beat out football love this week, it still topped the rest of the competition.
In contrast, the highly-hyped Charlie's Angels and The Playboy Club have already been canceled, while Pan Am is waiting with bated breath to hear its fate. Some critics are confident ABC's adventure in the sky drama won't last through it's first season, but with a fresh order for five additional scripts, the show's future doesn't seem quite as up in the air as some suggest.
Pan Am is fighting to stay in the game and managed to hold steady with 5.5 million viewers this Sunday, but that number was a big drop from lead-in Desperate Housewives, which had over 9 million viewers. It also pales in comparison next to Once Upon a Time's almost 12 million viewers earlier the same night.
Syfy's Neverland: What's the story?
As with all the fairytale dramas afoot, Syfy's Neverland is a rebooted, fresh take on a very familiar tale, promising to be a "story you never knew about a place you know by heart." The origins tale from writer/director Nick Willing (Syfy's Alice and Tin Man) looks back to a time before Peter met Wendy, hated Capt. Hook or even knew of Neverland.
When the action picks up, Peter is an orphan and street urchin taken in by Jimmy Hook, a gentleman of London who has fallen from grace. Hook secretly manages a network of young pickpockets and thieves — aka the Lost Boys before they were lost — and smart new addition Peter quickly becomes the dedicated leader of the gang.
After the boys steel a magical orb for Hook, they find themselves in Neverland, a mystical world that seems rife with opportunity and adventure. However, Peter soon becomes embroiled in a fight to save Neverland and battle lines are drawn. Peter Pan falls in with Tinker Bell and Aaya (the character formerly called Tiger Lily and played by Q'orianka Kilcher); while Hook is lured in by the 18th century power-mad pirate captain, Elizabeth Bonny.
SheKnows suspects that by battle's end, Neverland will look like more like the world viewers "know by heart."
Syfy's NeverlanD Trailer
Neverland premieres on Syfy in a two-night event on Sunday, Dec. 4 and Monday, Dec. 5. Check out the Neverland trailer for a sneak peek at the action.
Image courtesy of Syfy