According to Variety, the hour-long pilot would focus on characters Charles Rowland and Edwin Paine, two recently deceased individuals who decide to stay on Earth and solve supernatural crimes. These two characters already exist in another HBO Max DC Comics show, “Doom Patrol”. In this series, actors Sebastian Croft, whose most notable role to date was playing young Ned Stark in “Game of Thrones”, play Rowland and Ty Tennant will play Payne later in the current season. There is no news, however, that these actors will reprise their roles for the “Dead Boy Detectives” pilot.
Speaking of “Doom Patrol”, Berlanti Productions via Sarah Schechter, David Madden and Greg Berlanti himself will be producing the pilot. Berlanti is also behind “Doom Patrol” and other HBO Max shows, most notably the DC series “Titans” and the critically acclaimed “The Flight Attendant”. Steve Yockey, whose previous writing credits include “Supernatural,” “The Flight Attendant,” and “Doom Patrol,” is on board to write the screenplay as well as the executive production. “Doom Patrol” showrunner Jeremy Carver is also executive producer of the “Dead Boy Detectives” pilot. There is no news yet on who will direct, although Variety reports that filming will begin in November.
“Dead Boy Detectives” is just Gaiman’s latest creation to find its way onto the screen. Recent years have seen adaptations of Gaiman’s “American Gods” novel, and the popular “Lucifer” is based on his DC character. Both shows move away from Gaiman’s original works, but there have been other more faithful adaptations such as Amazon’s “Good Omens”, which is based on the book by Gaiman and Terry Pratchett and where Gaiman was also a showrunner. Amazon and Gaiman are moving forward with the second season of “Good Omens” as well as an adaptation of Gaiman’s novel, “Anansi Boys”. Gaiman is also involved in bringing his “Sandman” DC comic book characters to the screen in an upcoming Netflix series.
From what we know so far, it doesn’t appear that Gaiman was involved in the adaptation of “Dead Boy Detectives”. Considering the creative team overlap with “Doom Patrol,” this feels more like a spinoff from that show than anything else. Whether we’ll ever see it on HBO Max remains to be seen – they need to turn the pilot on before the streaming service decides to go ahead with a full series order. In the meantime, we can watch one of Gaiman’s many other adaptations or check out “Doom Patrol” on HBO Max.