The Thing I Like About …

Sleepy Hollow (TV-2013):  Ichabod.

Ichabod Crane has been transported from his time – the late 18th century – to our time.  He faces a world much changed from his, but he accepts his circumstances with good humour and courage.  He welcomes learning about the new things around him, which makes his fish-out-of-water days rather brief.

Part of his acceptance stems from the fact that he is not so different from us as we might have imagined; he sees very quickly that the world in many ways is just the same as in his time  – bad guys are still bad, good guys are still good, people are people – and we see that, while he may sound like he walked out of a Jane Austen novel, he is perfectly “normal” (intelligent, sarcastic, and funny).

We live in a world where it bothers us if the coffee shop is closed today, or if there’s a new picture on our money, or if others aren’t doing/watching/listening to/liking exactly the same things we do.  We don’t like change, even when it’s the change we asked for.  We also live in a world where we think we are the culmination of civilization – that all that came before us are ignorant savages completely foreign to our “sophisticated” ways of thinking and living.  We forget what Ichabod knows – that people are people, that they always have been, and likely always will be.  We forget that people-being-people isn’t a bad thing particularly, so we criticize all that seems different, assume the worst, and resist growth, change, or learning.  We would be terrified and lost in Ichabod’s world, and often we’re terrified and lost in our own.

Neil Postman wrote a book called “Building a Bridge to the 18th Century” … thank goodness Sleepy Hollow took him up on his suggestion.  I look forward to seeing the world through Ichabod’s eyes.

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