Tonight’s Sleepy Hollow was an exciting dabble into the real stakes of the coming war with Ichabod’s interrogation of the Horseman and Andy’s reluctant agreement to help. Also bolstering the ranks were Jenny and Frank as “Necromancer” delved into the Horseman’s backstory which was very connected to Ichabod and Katrina. Though the episode had potential to be great, I can’t get over Sleepy Hollow’s persistent misuse of Katrina as a character.
But we’ll get to that later.
First, the Horseman was once Abraham (Neil Jackson), who was once Ichabod’s best friend and Katrina’s fiance before Katrina broke off their engagement because she didn’t love him (and loved Ichabod instead). Who knew Ichabod’s back story would be so soapy? Katrina’s rejection left Abraham distraught so when Ichabod told him of the true reason Katrina broke up with him, things got violent, and Abraham “died”.
However it wasn’t Ichabod who killed Abraham (though they did have quite the sword fight). Abraham’s real killers were the Hessians, but Moloch can be attributed with Abraham becoming the Horseman of Death. Since he sold his soul to Moloch, he’s been hoping to find Ichabod and kill him as payback for “stealing” Katrina away.
This was a great turn for Ichabod’s character who is certainly likable though he hadn’t been overflowing with character up until this episode. “Necromancer” had him agitated and overwhelmed, his buttons being systematically pressed by the Horseman once it was made clear he had a connection to Katrina. Ichabod’s been presented as a smart, gentlemanly and at times goofy but overall good man. This episode certainly didn’t refute Ichabod’s goodness or status as hero, but it provided layers to him that had been missing before this.
The story of Ichabod and Abraham’s relationship was interesting so I wonder why Abraham and his death weren’t the great sin the Sin Eater had to cleanse him of a couple of episodes back. If Abraham’s been the Horseman the entire time, why was Arthur Bernard’s death the big thing that had Ichabod eating away at himself and allowing the Horseman to take advantage of him? Why wasn’t it this which also pushed a lot of Ichabod’s buttons? This didn’t have the icky racial implications or Ichabod’s weird guilt about Arthur’s death.
We’ll never know, but I’ll take some solace in the tepid relationship between Ichabod and Katrina having a bit of energy added to it. It’s still a mild relationship, but at least Ichabod showed some emotions related to her. That being said, we have yet to see how Ichabod and Katrina fell for one another. The flashbacks leapt in as Katrina had realized her feelings for Ichabod, and then focused solely on Ichabod and Abraham so the mystery of how Katrina and Ichabod fell so hard for another has yet to be solved.
Murkier is the effect this has on the Horseman’s character. It’s so petty that this nearly demonic killing machine is fueled by vengeance (and a little dose of misogyny) as well. The reason Katrina’s currently kicking it in purgatory is because Moloch plans on giving her as a “prize” to Abraham once he and the Horsemen successfully bring on the apocalypse. This turn should open up the door to more development for Katrina, but this episode has me wary about it. Abraham was agitated with her rejection and humiliation of him. His keeping her as a prize is just as much a punishment for Katrina as it is a reward for him. So the Headless Horseman is really just a manchild who still can’t accept that Katrina didn’t love him. And somehow he’s sure Katrina will love him after he’s helped adapt the Book of Revelations to real life and murdered her husband.
To be fair, the dude is technically without a brain as it was connected to the head that he’s been lacking for a few hundred years.
This turn should provide some development for the consistently and woefully underdeveloped Katrina. But “Necromancer” gave all the attention to Ichabod though it would have made perfect sense for Katrina to pop up and have some kind of reaction. Instead all of the reactions are given to Ichabod. Assuming Katrina’s rescue becomes vital, I hope she gets some development of her own.
In the Mills corner, Abbie was mostly relegated to keeping Ichabod from imploding, but her scene with Andy gave me a smidgen of the answers I’d been wanting for them. It was confirmed that Andy has some unrequited feelings for Abbie, which Abbie and Ichabod took advantage of it to get Andy to help them speak to the Horseman (because Andy’s the necromancer and the Horseman can speak through him). Despite his reluctance, he came around after Abbie batted her eyelashes and tenderly touched his hand. I suspect Andy knows that Abbie isn’t returning his affections (and is unlikely to do so), but he still wants to be in her good graces, and Abbie’s willing to take advantage of that if she needs to.
We also got some further explanation over Andy’s role in the coming apocalypse. Though he acted of his own free will when he was alive, now that he’s dead and his soul belongs to Moloch, he has no choice but to do as Moloch orders. Though I wonder what would happen if Moloch demanded that Andy hurt Abbie in some way. Since Andy’s been most adamant about protecting her, is there a chance he could push against Moloch in some way.
Is the hold Moloch has on Andy different from the hold he has on Abraham? It must be if Abraham makes a multitude of attempts on Ichabod’s life despite Moloch’s order not to kill him. Or perhaps it is the same, and the Horseman’s powerful enough to resist. So maybe Andy could do the same if motivated.
Also in the land of Awesome Things That Need to Happen More Often, Jenny teamed up with Irving to stop the Hessians looking to free the Horseman. Though Jenny and Abbie didn’t have a lot of time to interact one-on-one (though the two of them running through the tunnels with guns was nice), Jenny’s scenes with Irving almost made up for it. There’s a chemistry between Lyndie Greenwood and Orlando Jones that I hope is revisited, and apparently Abbie isn’t the only Mills sister Irving has trouble sticking to his guns with as he got over Jenny’s authority issues pretty quickly.
Next week’s “Sanctuary” involves a haunted house that holds some information about Katrina.
Leave your thoughts in the comments.