Sophie Lowe Joins A&E's 'The Returned' But How Is it Different From 'Resurrection,' Exactly?
A&E's new series The Returned is beefing up its cast. According to Deadline, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland star Sophie Lowe will star in the spooky new series, along with Kevin Alejandro of True Blood and Mat Vairo of Revolution who have also just signed on to the project. Already on board the series is Mark Pellegrino of Lost , who will reunite with Lost' s co-showrunner Carlton Cuse. Cuse wrote The Returned's pilot episode and will executive produce the show. (Let's hope this series has a more satisfying ending than Lost did.)
So, what is The Returned actually about? Based on the French series of the same name — which itself was based on the 2004 French film They Come Back — the series follows the people of a small town who get the shock of their lives when formerly dead residents come back to life. Alejandro will play the town sheriff who has to figure out exactly what to do about all of these, uh, "new arrivals" as strange events continue to plague the town.
I know what you're thinking — "Haven't we seen this show before?" The answer to that would be "Yes, yes we have." There are a surprising number of shows on TV lately with similar concepts — chief among them ABC's just-renewed drama Resurrection . So what's the difference between all of these shows? Here's the synopsis for each of the new, supernatural dramas that seem eerily similar to one another.
The Returned (2012)
The French Canal+ series — the French title is Les Revenants — follows the villagers in a small mountain town who are shocked to find their loved ones have returned from the dead, as seemingly healthy and normal as ever. Among the returned are Camille, a 15-year-old who died in a bus crash and is now years younger than her twin sister, and Simon, who has doubts that his apparent suicide was really a suicide. The first season of The Returned was eight episodes and was renewed for a second season. Sundance Channel has acquired the rights to the series — including the upcoming Season 2 — and is scheduling the show for late 2014.
In the Flesh (2013)
This BBC series also features people returning from the dead — or, rather, the undead. After a zombie apocalypse ravages a nation, the government finds a cure to turn the zombies back into regular, law-abiding citizens. Unfortunately, the former zombies can't forget about the horrible things that they did when they were dead... and they aren't exactly embraced by the community. Sigh.
Okay, so this gets a little confusing. Resurrection on ABC has no affiliation with the French series The Returned, but is based on the novel The Returned by Jason Mott. This series kicks off with an immigrations officer returning a young boy named Jacob to his home in Arcadia, Missouri — only to learn that Jacob has been dead for 30 years. Within days of Jacob's arrival more formerly dead people begin to spring up in Arcadia. With the dead's original bodies still remaining in their coffins, the only question now is who, exactly, these people are.
The Leftovers (2014)
This series is essentially the concept of Resurrection... in reverse. In this highly-anticipated HBO series, two percent of the world's population has mysteriously vanished, leaving "the leftovers" to wonder exactly where their loved ones have gone... and why they were left behind. The series premieres June 29 on HBO.