Van Helsing to lead broadcast-friendly police procedural for CBS

Lockerbie showrunner Jonathan Lee will write the series that sees Van Helsing teaming up with FBI agent Mina Harker to solve crimes.
Dracula - 1931 film.
Dracula - 1931 film. / Culture Club/GettyImages

Famous monster hunter Van Helsing is making his way to primetime with a new crime procedural series in development at CBS that will see Dr. Abraham Van Helsing working alongside his ex, FBI agent Mina Harker, to solve some of New York City's "most harrowing cases," per Deadline.

The character of Van Helsing was first introduced into the horror lexicon through Bram Stoker's classic 1897 gothic horror novel Dracula. In the original story, Van Helsing is a jack-of-all-trades type character, as he's not just a doctor but a polymath who doubles as a scientist, professor, philosopher, and more.

Deadline reports that Jonathan Lee (Lockerbie) is writing, with Elementary creator Rob Doherty set to executive produce. The series won't be produced in-house by Paramount but instead by Lionsgate Television. Prolific producers Sarah Timberman and Carl Beverly are executive producing as part of their overall deal with Lionsgate.

Van Helsing has appeared in many different Dracula iterations over the years, usually depicted as one of the Count's most cunning nemeses. He's been portrayed as a parapsychologist a few times, too. While most associate him with vampire slaying, Van Helsing is also a more general monster hunter, and that's the angle presented by the CBS series.

One of the most popular renditions of Van Helsing is from the 2004 action horror film starring Hugh Jackman as the titular character. From 2016 to 2021, Syfy aired five seasons of Van Helsing, centered on Kelly Overton's character, "Vanessa" Van Helsing, and Robert Eggers' upcoming Nosferatu features a Van Helsing-inspired character in Willem Dafoe's Professor Albin Eberhart Von Franz.

The premise of this show doesn't particularly excite me, as it sounds like almost every other police procedural airing on CBS. I'd like to see the writing and production lean into its horror roots with tonal similarities to NBC's Hannibal or Fox's Sleepy Hollow (without the behind-the-scenes messiness), or even the short-lived CBS procedural Clarice, but I'm anticipating vibes more akin to Grimm, which isn't necessarily a bad thing if the writing is sharp enough.

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