SLEEPY HOLLOW: Abbie and Jenny Confront the Past in “Sins of the Father”
BY The Screen Spy Team
Published 6 years ago
By Chris B.
Sleepy Hollow continued its promising forward momentum on Friday on a variety of fronts.
All of the plot tendrils are starting to wrap together into a thick, twisted rope. Will it be a noose or a lifeline? Only time will tell, but “The Sins of the Father” gives us a new perspective on just how important ties to the past can be, and not solely in the vein of Crane’s Revolutionary history. Yes, it has flashbacks, but not of the tortuously forced Betsy Ross variety. (I’ll pause while you breathe a joyous sigh of relief…)
Atticus Nevins returns, engineering his own capture with the sole purpose of extracting August Corbin’s very first file on the occult. We see how the two engage in a rouge mission at the end of the first Gulf War, stumbling accidentally upon a ghoul and its scarab remote control. This is what galvanized both Nevins and Corbin into the world of supernatural artifacts. While Nevins may have lost his spleen to Pandora when their business deal went south, he did gain a convenient spot in his gut to tote the scarab until he forfeits it to the creature to garner his own escape. He gets the better of Team Witness, but Nevins’s manipulation is small-time compared to the shadowy conspiracies of our very own government (Cue Fox Mulder’s smirk), something he learns as Jack Walters introduces him to the FBI’s special retirement plan via Glock 22. Corbin’s file is now the property of the man who is pulling Daniel Reynolds’s strings, but what consequences that will have are ominously uncertain.
Jenny and Abbie each confront their father, approaching him with different goals. Jenny seems intent upon ripping him to shreds for abandoning his family and never looking back, but she hears out his hard-luck story and the reassurances of his pared-down Dad version of the “It’s not you, it’s me” speech. Abbie, however, approaches him with an entirely different goal. Her confrontation of her father, coupling the all-business adult who wants information about her mother with the little kid who misses the comforting voice that once read and sang to her, wrenches the heart. Nicole Beharie’s subtle emotional bubbles (i.e., the struggle of Abbie to use her own voice to tell her father how she fondly remembers his) always gets to me. (If the writers ever allow her to let loose, like in the emotional outpouring to Crane that she desperately needs to do, it will be amazing!)
This episode also highlights Abbie’s struggle to deal with her past ten months in the Catacombs. Abbie has taken on a divided self, navigating a tenuous tightrope as she wills herself to be normal while something eats at her grip on reality from the inside. Her inner conflict is gaining ground; the obsession with the mysterious symbol (which she traces in her own blood last week) now appears in a glowing hallucination on the glass of the FBI conference room, covers the pages of her journal, and has its own hidden shrine on her garage wall. The toll it takes on the important things in her life is obvious as well. Her shaky marksmanship and rapid-fire flashbacks cause her to hesitate to shoot the ghoul, nearly costing Ichabod his life. Not to mention the fabulous Italian meal–complete with flowers, candles, and wine—that she shuns.
Crane is complimentary and happy and warm, and in response, Abbie is cold as ice. Ouch. (Abbie, girl, I know you’ve a lot on your mind, but come on! ) The long shot that ends the scene, of Crane in the distance from the perspective of the uneaten food and neglected table, was utterly desolate.