Review: ABC's new drama 'The Crossing' has binge-worthy feel

NEW YORK -- Entertainment reporter Sandy Kenyon shares his review of ''The Crossing.''

The new drama is unusual enough that one of the stars of The Crossing was surprised to learn ABC had ordered the series. It looks and plays like a program you might want to binge watch on a streaming service like Hulu or Netflix.

The victims of what appears to be a shipwreck are in fact refugees from the future who have made The Crossing, or gone back in time 180 years to the present day.

"We were running away," a little girl tells the local sheriff played by Steve Zahn. He asks, "You were running away, from what?"

Leah replies, "the war."

"But there's no war here," he says.

The little survivor says simply, "There will be."

Leah has been separated from her mother, played by Natalie Martinez.

"I come from the future, where I'm a soldier," Martinez said. "So it's going to be very tough for me to confide in him and trust him when I know him to be a certain way, especially towards us."

The folks from the future have genetically enhanced abilities, which is very clear from her first big action sequence.

In fact, there's no shortage of action, but that's not what The Crossing is all about.

"His character can relate to the fact that I'm a mother who's trying to look for her daughter, and he can relate to that because he has a son, and he kind of sees that," Martinez said about Zahn's character. "That's one thing we kinda have together."

And that, according to Zahn, is the emotional core of the show.

"That's why I like it," he said. "You know, I'm not attracted to sci-fi, really. I'm not. I never watched Star Trek. It didn't turn my crank. It has to be believable. It has to be real."

The Crossing is grounded in reality because its creators consulted experts at NASA and futurists to see what might be possible two centuries from now.

"They always had an answer for everything," Zahn said. "Any kind of question you might have, about food, anything. 'What happens when you travel?' They had an answer for it."

Plausible is a word that comes to mind here, and that's why I like this one. Because like Steve, I'm not a huge science fiction fan.

The Crossing debuts Monday at 10 p.m. ET | 9 p.m. CT on ABC.
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