What works so well about the new teaser for ABC’s Resurrection isn't just the gut-wrenching sight of a man who's realizing his deceased son has somehow returned to him. It’s the moments leading up to that, which really drive the emotion home, as they show Kurtwood Smith’s character Henry responding his son Jacob, and you can see that for a moment, he’s completely forgotten that Jacob died thirty years ago. That loving recognition and familiarity is as fresh as it ever was decades earlier. And then the shock settles in when he realizes what he’s seeing. We get a second reaction when Frances Fisher's character also sees him.
How has Jacob come back from the dead? That is the question and likely the main mystery of ABC’s new drama, which based on the novel The Returned by Jason Mott. If you’re hoping to cheat and use the book to spoil yourself on this mystery, you’re out of luck. It hasn’t even been published yet, and it’s not due out until after ABC’s drama premieres this March.
The story is set in Arcadia, Missouri, though Jacob (Landon Gimenez) surfaces on the other side of the planet, waking up in a rice paddy in a rural Chinese province. Omar Epps plays J. Martin Bellamy, the immigration agent who takes him home. We get a glimpse of him in the above teaser. As Jacob died thirty years ago, his parents (played by Smith and Fisher) have aged some since then, but he doesn’t seem to have noticed. He's only happy to see his father. Is he even aware that he died?
Naturally, Jacob’s parents want answers, as does the town sheriff, Fred (Matt Craven) whose wife drowned trying to save Jacob. Devin Kelley plays Fred’s daughter, Maggie, the local doctor. And Mark Hildreth is on board to play the town’s pastor. I’m thinking science and religion will both want to have their say in this event, which sounds as though it’s just the tip of the iceberg for a bigger mystery tied to the town and its residents. Maybe Arcadia’s purgatory and they’re all dead! Wait, that sounds familiar…
Here’s the longer trailer that ABC released last Spring when the pilot was officially ordered to series.
Resurrection premieres Sunday, March 9 at 9:00 p.m. ET on ABC.