Sleepy Hollow, Episode 17 “This Is War” Broadcast September 22, 2014
Written by Mark Goffman
Directed by Ken Olin
The episode opens strangely, with Ichabod begging someone for something, only to find himself in his cabin, getting a 251st birthday cupcake from Abbie. He feels that something is not right, but the pair are called to meet with a professor of a historical society. Once at the building they find an armed guard with his head cut off. Knowing this telltale sign for the Horseman, they open their car to reveal a stash of weapons that would make the Winchester brothers envious. They enter the building to find it disheveled and the professor beheaded. Oddly, Ichabod witnesses a small plant instantly go through a growth spurt. Learning that the professor was a scholar on Benjamin Franklin, Ichabod reveals that he apprenticed to the “gasbag” under Washington’s orders. Knowing Franklin’s perchance for being overly clever, and feeling that a scholar would be likewise, he discovers a cache of hidden files. Once found, the Horseman appears and chaos erupts. The pair are able to chase him off, but Ichabod feels weak. Back at their hidden library at the police station, Ichabod comes across a photo of a key and realizes it was the key Franklin used for his kite, as he was there. Franklin was not testing for electricity, but trying to destroy the key, which he failed at. Crane discerns the key’s true purpose: it can open the door to Purgatory and allow anyone entrance or exit, without another soul having to be used in exchange. Such a key would give the demon Moloch free reign to enter Earth and start the apocalypse. With this revelation the opening credits began.
I was completely suckered by Mark Goffman’s script. I though Fox had done a Being Human error, and was showing this “season opener” out of order with a later episode. And I’m glad I fell for it. What happens brings back John Noble and Lyndie Greenwood’s characters, and I was so happy to see them. Ichabod is where he was left last season, as is Abbie, though she encounters a surprising soul that I thought was done with this series. The action of episode revolves around finding the key before Henry Parrish can and rescuing Abbie from Purgatory. There is also a very intriguing side story involving Katrina Crane, who was taken by the Horseman in last season’s finale. Tom Mison is still superb as Ichabod Crane, and his musings on modern society play second fiddle to his hilarious commentary on Benjamin Franklin. Nicole Beharie gets some nice solo time in Purgatory with a risk she takes, and her scenes with Mison have strong chemistry. Lyndie Greenwood is terrific, and no one can chew the scenery like John Noble. Katia Winter has only two scenes, but they hint at larger things in her future.
The good: Excellent resolution from the season finale, incredible Franklin commentary, great chemistry with the leads, and a conclusion that is “Magnificent.”
The bad: I’m overdosing on Purgatory. It needs to be seen, as that’s where Abbie is, but I’m hoping that the series stays away from this setting after all the times it was mentioned last season in regards to Katrina. However, this is a minor quibble. And no Orlando Jones? Boo!
The final line: It’s still supernatural fun with the impending apocalypse and the revealing of America’s hidden history. Overall grade: A
Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer’s Guide for several years with “It’s Bound to Happen!”, he reviewed comics for TrekWeb, and he currently reviews Trek comics at TrekCore. He’s taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for two years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.