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Big Revelations on SLEEPY HOLLOW Set the Pieces For a Tense Fall Finale

By on November 13, 2015

L-R: Nicole Beharie as Abbie Mills. Co. Cr: Tina Rowden/FOX.

By Jennie Bragg

Sleepy Hollow’s various stories started to converge this week and in a big way.

That shard Jenny and Joe have been chasing is somehow connected to Pandora. Jenny is having visions of the tablet that brought Ichabod back to Sleepy Hollow in the first place. Abbie’s FBI boss is now connected to the team’s pursuit of the shard in a new and very unexpected way. And Atticus is connected to Pandora. While Pandora herself didn’t play her usual role this week, she was still responsible for the baddies, who were conjured out of Pandora’s box by Nevins himself to go after the shard.

Jenny, of course, has absorbed the shard and now we know what that means: she absorbed its energy, essentially becoming the shard. This has two really bad implications for her. It makes her a target for Nevins, who still wants that shard badly. And, er, rather more alarmingly, the shard’s energy will eventually kill her. Abbie, Crane and Joe’s mission this week is to figure out how to protect her from the beasts Nevins conjures to get the shard back, while figuring out how to perform a “shard-ectomy.” Which, ironically, means spying on Nevins to learn whatever he might know.

Big Revelations

I admit, when I heard this episode was going to be mostly about Jenny, I was a little concerned. Not because I don’t like Jenny. I love her, everyone loves her, and having her in the the middle of the action every week has been one of the best things this reboot got right. But I worried that they were moving the show even farther away from its great asset: Abbie and Ichabod together. Yes it’s good, and logical, that Abbie and Ichabod’s world has expanded but the last two episodes, with the Bones folk coming over and then Zoe, Danny and Nevins last week, it seemed like Abbie and Ichabod had to fight for time together. They still had good moments, just not enough of them.

Thankfully, my fears were misplaced. The “Art of War” integrated the multitude of characters well, giving everyone good moments without seeming rushed or perfunctory. And as was promised, the Jenny and Joe’s story finally merged with Abbie and Ichabod’s story in a very unexpected way.

Those beasts Nevins conjured – beserkers from Norse legend, beasts who fight with an uncontrollable, single-minded fury – were classic Sleepy Hollow baddies. They resembled the minions that Moloch brought forth from Purgatory – as well as looking like they could have come out of any number of fantasy novels (take your pick: Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones). Unfortunately, there was an added twist. Crane works out that they should defeated by mistletoe – yes, as Joe said, “gosh who put that there? I guess we should kiss” mistletoe. (And really, Sleepy Hollow likes its mistletoe, doesn’t it?) But it turns out friendly mistletoe won’t kill these unstoppable killers. So instead, Abbie and Ichabod come up with a clever plan, a la the Weeping Angels in Doctor Who: If they can’t be defeated by others, let them defeat each other. This trick works, with the beserkers fighting each other to the death, but sadly that doesn’t end the danger for the team, as Nevins and Sophie return to give us a surprise twist.

Didn’t See That Coming, or Maybe I Did, a Little

A mid-season finale has to have big revelations and, even though we’re not there yet, this penultimate episode had two good OMG moments. One was Jenny and Joe’s kiss. Which, sure, wasn’t exactly a surprise. They’ve been hinting at something with those two since the start of the season. But I didn’t think they’d go there that fast. But they did. To be honest, maybe a little too fast. They might have wanted to squeeze a little juice more out of that buildup. But we know now that Joe *really* has a personal stake in this fight against the baddie, and that always makes the fight more urgent. That was one thing lacking last week – it didn’t seem like there was a lot at stake for the team in the fight against the Red Lady, cool and creepy though she was.

The other big OMG was Sophie revealing that she is an FBI agent. Not just that, but part of Reynolds team trying to take down Atticus Nevins. In a week filled with blindsides, that was a big one. As Crane would say, I have questions. What’s Reynolds’ game here? After last week’s revelation that he still carries a torch for Abbie, I figured that was the reason he always seemed to be holding something back from her when he talks about her future with the Westchester FBI. But clearly he’s been hiding a lot more and now his motives aren’t so clear. Is he really trying to help her so she can help him? Is he using her in some way, while focusing on his real protégé, Sophie? Was he just testing her with the Nevins assignment? If he was, it looks like Abbie may have failed that test in a spectacular way.

Abbie’s world is getting messy and needless to say, that does not sit well with her. I loved seeing Abbie and Jenny talk about their differences as sisters – control freak Abbie vs impulsive Jenny – and how it can cause tension but also means they complement each other. And Abbie is also taking this fight very personally, with her sister’s life at stake, while she’s grappling with the other personal angle – watching her FBI career ambitions in a slow motion collision with her duty as a Witness.

Crane is still the character with the least going on besides fighting baddies. When Crane and Abbie had their heart-to-heart talk in the woods, he ruminated on the challenges he’s facing: complicated citizenship paperwork and aggressive commercial development. Pretty weak stuff that doesn’t seem likely to have given him an existential crisis about his place in the modern world, but that’s what he’s got right now. The most poignant part of his speech was the idea of losing Abbie as she moves on in her career.

Though he may not be having a believable life crisis, Crane had plenty of good action this week. Thankfully the show seems to be edging away from the comedy relief version of Crane and back toward the sharper, snarkier version of Crane. He had a good sparring partner this week in Sophie. Watching them try to take the measure of each other and come out on top was good fun.

So, back to the trouble and strife. At the end of the episode, Jenny is gone. She’s with Pandora, who, it looks like, is the warm up act to a much bigger baddie, if Atticus Nevins is to be believed. Nevins, who seemed cool as a cucumber last week, was positively unhinged at the idea of angering whoever this new bad guy is. And it all seems to be tying into those tablets finally. Clearly plenty more to be revealed for next week’s mid-season finale, and beyond.

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