Before taking a three-week hiatus, 'Sleepy Hollow' provides a solid fifth episode with "John Doe." This week, "Crabbie" aka Crane-Abbie uncovers the lost Roanoke colony destroyed by a plague-carrying horseman. As the residents' earth-bound souls reside behind a spiritual veil, a horseman entices a suriving child spirit into human form to inflict viral pain on the contemporary Sleepy Hollow residents. Of course, "Crabbie" saves the day by returning the flesh-made Roanoke child to his colony and baptizing him in healing waters.
Directing-wise I enjoyed this episode's slower more fluid pace facilitating a smooth transition from the opening dream sequence into modern day with an amazing blue-green lens filter effect. After talking to 'Sleepy Hollow''s production cast and crew at New York Comic Con 2013, I have a better understanding of the producers' plans, but unanswered questions re-appeared in this week's episode. The show continuously introduces, mysteriously drops and re-introduces characters. After John Cho's character disappears, subsequent episodes don't mention a missing corpse or police car. The headless horseman disappears and no surrounding town describes a murdering colonial solider. Now, Abbie's sister disappears and neither Abbie nor Ichabod confirm that she is in the asylum for six more months or traveling Sleepy Hollow under Abbie's conservator position. Plus, I wonder about Corbin's abandoned cabin (or whoever owns the place now). Why didn't the conspiracy-focused sheriff in a dangerous job in his mid-50s have a will? Although we see development on Ichabod's living situation by moving in, is Abbie's sister fine with that? Also, I have a bone to pick about Ichabod's back-story. Oxford constitutes multiple colleges. So, technically, wouldn't an old shool Oxford professor just list the campus he works for i.e. Blackfriars? Plus, I doubt a main, universal number would confirm Ichabod's position. For example, if I want to confirm a friend teaches at a Penn State campus, I'd have to call each campus. Wouldn't the ex have to call each English/History/Humanities department at each Oxford college to confirm if Ichabod's a tutor or professor? If he's doing it from the office, wouldn't the Captain notice the bill? Considering Ichabod stated on multiple records that he's a time traveler, why has the entire police staff (save the Captain and Abbie) forgotten that? Finally, I don't quite get the Sleepy Hollow residents. Despite multiple violent murders, NONE of the Sleepy Hollow residents move; yet, the possible hint of an old-timey plague does it? Really?
Although writing wise and directing wise this episode provied solid, the production staff seemingly reduced the "Crabbie" chemistry (which Nicole and Tom humorously denied) while boosting the Katrina-Ichabod marriage. I hate to admit it, but the humorous "Crabbie" bromance draws me each week as a viewer. With the improved writing/directing, I could enjoy the show without it. But, why drop a good thing? All the same, at this point, Ichabod's increasing perfection is almost annoying. NOW he's a nobleman AND a tracker AND he walks on water? Mison promised in the interview we'd see more fear beneath Ichabod's bravado. We do see hints when Abbie soothes Ichabod for staying in the present-day: "Believe me when I say you belong in sleepy hollow in the here and now." Is that foreshadowing? Considering Katrina is clearly not in the here and now, what does that mean? Also, considering Ichabod's the MOST open-minded uber-liberal EVER, why would Katrina hide her Wiccan ways? Is Katrina as good as we think and, is it Katrina hidden in the veil?
As you can tell, this was a solid, but pretty middle of the road episode. While I don't have much to say, I'm impressed with Tom Mison's Middle English dialect. Mison, like Ichabod, appears impossibly perfect and it came across in the interview with his posh accent yet hints of devilish humor. But, going back to Middle English, it takes a while to read 'Beowulf' or Chaucer in original Middle English dialogue fluently without losing rhythm. Of course, Mison, like Ichabod, masters it.
Watch this spot next week, when I post my New York Comic Con interviews with the cast and crew. 'Sleepy Hollow' returns the first Monday in November.
"You and I have very different definitions of what's old." - Ichabod
"It's a language you, too, are familiar with. English." -Ichabod
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