So this past week we got the second episode of the new show Sleepy Hollow, and in an effort to offer more of a review than a recap, you’ll get a bit more of my opinion than a simple retelling. So, on to the episode!
We open with Crane running in the woods from all four horsemen, now I like that the horsemen will be different, and each one being unique, but in general I feel like this show is going too big too soon, and I’ll address that further, by the end of the review. Any way Crane is dreaming, and just before the horsemen can get him he’s pulled into an underground tunnel, where Katrina is waiting with some vital information about how before the horsemen there will be an “army of evil [that] will make way for them”. Now I actually like the concept of this dream reality, and since the next episode will, based on the monster-of-the-week, likely center on it, I’m happy to explore it, but I feel like Katrina will become too convenient over time.
Mills is having a rough morning, as two officers who had corroborated her story last week recanted, and there’s the issue now of how exactly Dunn snapped his neck. Footage of the cell he was in shows him getting up, and running head first at the mirror… which I’m pretty sure would only cause a concussion, and maybe require a trip or two to the chiropractor… but this is a show where supernatural events take place, and I honestly expected them to look at the recording of the CCTV and just see it go all fuzzy, and being unable to prove what exactly happened to Dunn. Captain Irving will be leaving for a bit, so he’ll be giving Mills “some latitude”, but warns her not to “embarrass” him (that’s a bit how I felt about the show at the end of this episode, but I’m getting ahead of myself).
During this conversation , they addressed Ichabod and the fact that while Irving certainly believes that Ichabod fully believes that he’s a man out of time, that he couldn’t be, because that would be crazy. All of this was inter-spaced with scenes of Ichabod following the instructions on labels for various things in the hotel room he’s being kept in. I love watching him learn new things, it adds humor to the show, and supports it’s premise, that Ichabod, while being very intelligent, and having a unique source of information, is finding himself in a world he doesn’t understand, in a way complimentary to Mills. Speaking of Mills, when she goes to pick up Ichabod, it’s like they’re back at square one. While I understand her doubts, Ichabod is frustrated at her backtracking when he tries to explain his dream, and she just doesn’t buy it. What she did buy though, was a a bag of doughnut holes for Ichabod, something he initially refuses, and then is astounded by how delicious they are. I enjoyed that in this scene. What I didn’t like about this scene though (and apologies for this tangent) is how Crane and Mills seemed like they may become this generation’s Mulder and Scully, in that Crane like Mulder went into everything already accepting things Scully considered impossible. Here’s where the Scully and Mulder comparison starts to breakdown though. In X-Files, which was mostly a case-of-the-week show, it made sense that even if on some episodes Scully would give in to Mulder’s theories, each week brought something new for them to debate. However when it came to certain story arcs, while Scully was always a true skeptic, at a certain point, she’d go along with what was happening, and she wouldn’t backtrack unless there was some new evidence to support her skepticism. With Mills, there’s nothing to support this new skepticism, because even though Sleepy Hollow is going with this monster-of-the-week format, like Buffy and Supernatural have before it, they’re already establishing a serialized story arc.
Which brings us to the next scene with them in the car and Mills is skeptical of not only Katrina having been a witch, but that she was able to hide it from Ichabod. What Mills believes even less, is that in addition to trying to save her own life by keeping her witchcraft secret, but that Katrina (according to Ichabod’s assumptions) was also doing it because she was helping to protect Sleepy Hollow, and again the fate of the world. Now it reminds me of this interview with Damon Lindelof, Lindelof (whether you love him or hate him) points out that these days saving a town, or even the state of California, isn’t enough anymore. And while he was talking about films, I think the same thing applies to TV. You see in Buffy, for the longest time, she was just protecting Sunnydale and its residents, and in Supernatural, there were hints at a bigger picture, but mostly until about season 4, it was just Sam and Dean going on “hunting trips”. Saving the world came later, not first, and so I’ll say again, I think Sleepy Hollow is getting too deep with the mythology too quickly, because after they save the world… what’s next?
Anyway, back to the episode. The demon isn’t done with Dunn, and revives him in the morgue and gives him instructions, and causes him to choke up a pendant of some sort. Now I’m fine with Dunn sticking around, and I could even argue that the demon only killed him to keep him out of suspicion as he did the dirty work, but two things about Dunn felt a tad ridiculous. And one was this awful scene with Dunn’s snapped neck… it was just poorly done, I don’t even know why they over did it. I also dislike the fact that (just like in season 8 of Dexter) NO ONE seems to notice that Dunn took a police car. What, do cops no longer keep tabs on their vehicles?!?!?!
What I did like about this episode though was the scare factor. The “monster” this week was a witch who’s revitalization from a walking charred corpse hinged on the consumption of the ashes of the ancestors of those who burned her at the stake.
There were definitely a couple of times that I jumped in these scenes with the charred witch, and I love that about semi-scary shows like this.
But the fact that when she was whole again she magically had a skimpy corset and skirt felt silly. I get that this is FOX, not HBO, and she has to have clothes on, but then the skeleton that Dunn dug up for her, should have had clothes with it or something. Also, in these tunnels under the police station, I think they’re great, and I’m fine if they were boarded up and undiscovered, but that concept is lost when said “secret” tunnels have metal walkways and railings. Finally, when they blow up the gun powder down there, (that again would have been discovered if the tunnels were maintained)destroying the witch, you really think that no one at the police station heard that? Who am I kidding, the cops don’t notice missing cars, so I guess they won’t notice an explosion below their building.
I do think that getting more personal information on Mills was nice, regarding her relationship with Corbin. And I like that out of that relationship, we get him as her “guide” if you will. I didn’t really care for her dating history in the episode, but what I also like is the chance to see her sister, who we’ll likely see more and more of. The fact that her sister fully trusts her senses, even though it keeps her in a mental asylum, I think will bring an interesting balance to the show.
So overall I’m still very much into the show. I’m really enjoying Crane adapting to this new life, and it balances the fun with the fright! It, like most shows with a supernatural element requires a suspension of disbelief, and I can give it that, but certain plot holes like Dunn stealing the car, the maintained tunnels, and the witches clothes do take me out of it. So it’ll get “some latitude”, I just hope it doesn’t embarrass me in the long run.
Thanks for reading, feel free to leave comments below.