Monday, September 22, 2014

Sleepy Hollow Review - Episode 12 - Indispensable Man - "Zombie Washington sends his regards."

With a short delay...we continue towards the end of the first season of Sleepy Hollow. Who will live? Who will die? Who will tell Ichabod that anything on FOX News isn't meant to be taken as a factual statement?

Anyway, let's go and find ourselves an "Indispensable Man".

"It is possible that I may have appeared in The Time Machine."
As this episode progresses, the events of the last episode hang heavy over one character in particular, Captain Irving. The rest of the law enforcement community have a lot of questions for him. And, no, "the devil made me do it" isn't going to fix this.

But we know now that it seems like Ramirez is alive. How alive isn't clear. But the deaths we saw seem to be the only ones.

Irving's colleagues are grilling him. They don't want to, but there's a dead cop in the mix. There is no sign of any outsider entering the cabin they were in. So they are left with a cop, a woman, and a paralyzed girl as potential suspects.

"Were just trying to vaccinate you daughter against the blight that is
sketch comedy."
As much as he isn't thrilled about being suspected, when he sees that they are testing his daughter, he is troubled. It was her body that was doing a lot of the damage we saw. She may have not been in control, but that is hard to show under the law.

Irving is in crisis the whole episode. He wants to protect his child from unfair blame and trouble. So he goes for the only move he thinks he has.

He takes the blame for the deaths, and surrenders himself.

"I always knew appearing in Father of the Pride would come back and haunt me."
It seems like one player is getting pushed off the board. This is effectively the end of Irving's part in this season. He's cutoff and out of communication. Will this be permanent? Will there be a way to clear him? Guess Season 2 will answer that question.

But with the captain gone, I'm still left with a burning question. Why is there still no new sheriff in town?!

In the main part of the show, Ichabod is still pondering the information he gained in the last episode, a hidden date in George Washington's bible. It's seems to be written by Washington, but it's a date that follows Washington's death. What does it mean?

"Please enjoy some Tranya, a traditional Virginian beverage."

It leads him to flashback to a meeting with Washington. Washington acts super cryptic and weird. He lays out a lot of allusions that now sound like Ichabod was meant to fight on long after everyone else was dead, and to then rise like Lazarus.

This then leads Ichabod to realize Lazarus is also a sign of where in the bible more information is hidden. Excited, he races off to find Abbie.

"Geez. Abbie. Is this anyway to treat a Nice Guy(TM)."
Over with Abbie, she's got some company. Undead Andy. He sneaks in creepily behind Abbie, as he usually did in life, I imagine. Then announces himself. This leads to the inevitable conclusion.

Abbie ties him up.

He acts all frustrated. He just needs to get the bible from Abbie, and then he can give it to Moloch. Easy enough.

In return, Abbie can have a place of honor in Moloch's reign over the world. ...And maybe she can date Undead Andy too? Aren't the perks piling up.

He then warns her that Ichabod will give up Abbie's soul to Moloch. It's prophesied. (This is something Ichabod also noted Moloch sating after his last meeting with the demon.) But all that this proves is that Moloch has a big mouth.

Not getting his way, once Abbie has turned away, Undead Andy disappears.

Does he actually control that? Can he do it at will? Can he do it when no one is looking? Or, does Moloch do it to him when Moloch thinks it's sufficiently dramatic?

Meeting up with Ichabod at the Archive, they exchange notes...after Ichabod kvetches about his phone, and how he wants a newer cooler phone. Abbie goes through her Andy Time. Ichabod explains his recollection of Washington, and begins unveiling the hidden message in the bible.

It seems that Washington was well aware of Ichabod's destiny. But when your a general you're expected to keep up on those sort of things.

When Washington learned he had a fatal sickness, he took steps with some wielders of magic to resurrect himself. ...GEORGE WASHINGTON ROSE FROM THE GRAVE!!! Happy Halloween to come, everyone.

"Argh!...Zombie George Washington...Write!"

Having come back half-dead, he was linked to both worlds. With this knowledge he wrote down a map that could be used to pass, as a mortal, between the worlds. A how to guide for getting to Purgatory and back.

Cue Credits!

After the credits, we get the inserted conflict, as Abbie is now worried that Ichabod will do something stupid, and let Moloch get his hands on the map. And Ichabod is worried that Abbie now thinks he may betray her.

It's a small rift. Still, do either of them really trust Moloch to be honest with them? And, so far, Ichabod hasn't abandoned the cause to chase after ways to save his wife. But maybe things will be revealed.

They decide to trust each other and the story is allowed to move along.

"Abbie? Stop squeezing my hand."
Trying to figure out where Washington and the map were laid to rest, they note that Reverend Knapp (from the first episode) was present at Washington's resurrection. Damn, magic immortal is cool.

So Knapp lived from the Revolutionary War right up to the first episode. And he's just hung in the show's background. I hope we might get some insight into him and the warlocks he's with in the next season.

The pair intuit that cursed prayer beads used in the spell for Washington may have been Reverend Knapps prayer beads. So they may be in town. And being cursed, they will be full of sin, which a friend of theirs is skilled in reading.

So they need the Friendly Neighborhood Sin Eater, Parrish, to help and see if the beads offer any clues to where Washington was laid to final rest. Once they have him, they head out to the graveyard and look for Knapp's grave.

"Let's open this grave quietly, so no one...Who left all those car lights on
with the high beams going?"
They get inside the sarcophagus and find the reverend intact, though the obviously had to sew his head back on. The beads are around his neck.

Parrish is overwhelmed by the beads. A spell on the beads causes Parish to be burned. Abbie wants to back off. But Parrish is eager to continue, to unveil the secrets.

The effort knocks him on his back, but he sees a vision of Washington being taken to be buried along a shore line. But now he needs to rest, and not be  bothered.

Abbie takes Ichabod aside and they close up Knapps grave. As they do, Abbie makes it clear that she needs to know that Ichabod will know when to pull back on his efforts to enter Purgatory. If it will cost lives, cause the end of the world, or something else dark, he needs to be ready to give up.

Abbie Mills patented "Have You Not Been Paying Attention" look.

And I like this conversation. This isn't about whether Ichabod will betray Abbie. It's about whether Ichabod will be so focused on his goal that he'll let something slip, like falling for one of Moloch's ruses.

Having finished their talk, they suddenly realize that they aren't alone. They're under attack. The shadowy, hissing, clawed creatures are back. They race around them, and pounce. Unfortunately for them, they are still utterly useless against gunfire. One bullet and they explode like a Power Ranger Putty. I guess they work better with more surprise, or in larger numbers.

Oh no! Their dreaded secondary attack! Second hand smoke.
"I broke the Third Commandment a few times when that thing hit me."
Back at the Archive, they patch up Parrish, who had been hit during the fight. He's still his dry humored self.

They decide that Washington must have been buried near Sleepy Hollow. They also know it was one of the islands near the city. So they get to studying the maps for the most likely site.

"Is this the end of Undead Andy?"
Elsewhere, Undead Andy heads back into the underground of Sleepy Hollow. He is running around and screaming for Moloch. He then is beset by a swarm of some unnatural insects that pin him to a wall and then cocoon him.

"Maybe Abbie will date me now."
Sometime later, Undead Andy emerges as...something different. Really, he's looking like the makeup work used on one of the Exorcist prequels (No, the other one.).

But he is changed, and no longer seems human. He's stronger and more deadly now.

He then heads off to go after Abbie and Ichabod.

Abbie and Ichabod decide on the most likely island and head there with Parrish. Searching the island, they find a marker that points to the tomb of George Washington.

Being the sensible one, Abbie let's the guys go first into the
mysterious tomb.
Turning the marker, eventually a hidden door in the ground opens. Damn. I do love ancient secret tombs. They have amazing architecture and engineering. Engineering that functions perfectly hundreds of years later. But it is a standard trope of the genre. And when magic is involved, you let things slide.

Inside it's what you might imagine for a masonic tomb. Pyramids and Eyes. Serene statues. References to ancient history. (Granted, an actual mason might snicker at the imagery use.)

"I've forgotten. Are we looking for the Holy Grail, America's Secret
Treasure, or Zombie George Washington?"
Looking around, they avoid the booby trapped pyramid in the middle of the room, and instead go to a seal honoring Washington's favorite Roman general. Cincinnatus. Ichabod spots a place to put his masonic ring, and he opens the wall. Out comes Zombie Washington...No. Out comes a sarcophagus with a long dead Washington in it.

"Just so we're agreed. If Washington pops up, I will be taking his head off."

As it emerges, the lamps all light up across the tomb. And then the top of the sarcophagus comes off. (Maybe we'll get Vampire George Washington? ...No.) And Washington did lie here. Still does, in fact.

"Heeere's Andy!"
They pull out the map, and feel like one hurdle has finally been dealt with. But then a new bigger one appears. Undead Andy 2.0 appears and yanks a giant stone into the door of the tomb, blocking it up. That leaves the trio trapped inside with Andy. He leaps down and they realize that something has changed, and it's not just his haircut.

Abbie quickly finds the gun isn't going to work on his as he rushes at her through her shots, and destroys the gun. He then knocks Ichabod into a lamp, starting a fire. Then he begins throttling Abbie, demanding the map.

Then Parrish steps in and starts dredging up Undead Andy's regrets and pain. He knocks Parrish away, but seems to be stunned by the experience. He tells Abbie that if the map isn't destroyed Moloch can use it to win the war. Then he asks her to kill him, before he goes evil again.

"And this is how the Mills say goodbye."

She takes a crowbar and slams it through his head. All the way through. (I could critique, but every show, like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, screws with the physics of this.) Andy goes down.

They then try to find a way out, and Ichabod figures that the masons would put a secret exit in the tomb. (...Because...Why not! I have a secret tomb, I'll demand a secret exit in it.)

As they begin opening the secret exit, Andy decides that dead isn't better, and rises. The hole through his head seals up, and...Why doesn't Moloch make more lackies like this? Hard to take down. Regenerate to life from fatal blows. His plans would go way better if he did that. Eh, what can you expect from supernatural super villains?

"Fuck. What does it take for you to take a hint?"

As he rises to attack, Abbie gets a crazy idea. Shoot the booby trapped pyramid in the middle of the room. So she shoots at a lever sticking out of the pyramid, and finally hits. And then the tomb hits the fan.

The ceiling begins breaking up and crashing down. As Andy tries to reach them, he's hit by larger and larger chunks of the ceiling, finally falling.

The trio race outside, and take a breather. Ichabod covetously eyes the map they now have. But Abbie emphasizes that Moloch is desperate to get the map, so it shouldn't be allowed to exist any longer. Ichabod struggles with the idea, but finally decides to let the map go, and sets it alight.

Parrish objects, but Ichabod says it must be done. Quickly, the map is just ash.

"Listen! They just have to rewrite Season 2, okay?"

After that, Ichabod is distraught. His first real chance to save his wife is gone.

Or, is it?

Ichabod sits down and begins sketching. Sketching out the lost map. Remember, he does have a photographic memory.

Photographic memory, but can't remember the grocery list.

So the map isn't so lost. But what might be still because of it?

Let's see in the finale!


This was a fun episode, beside the fact Irving's life is being thoroughly trashed. The whole adventure is enjoyably absurd. Zombie Washington. Masonic tomb. Immortal warlock priest.

The idea that Abbie is doubting Ichabod, in regards to betraying her is a bit much. The "witnesses" are supposed to run on faith, but come on! When she's written to be concerned that Ichabod will risk too much to get to his wife, that seems a reasonable concern.

It was also nice to see Parrish the Sin Eater again. Still a fun bit of characterization. And seeing as how the season has been going, you have to be a little concern watching the episode as to whether they would off his character this episode. They still could next time, but you get to caring for the character.

We also see what seems to be the end of Undead Andy. He's been radically changed, and then he's stuck under piles of stone. ...You know he could still be around. I guess we'll have to see if he resurfaces in some form. Maybe next time he'll have bat wings.

Annoyingly, I joked many months ago about not having season 1 of the show reviewed before season 2 started. If we are lucky I can have the finale up by tomorrow. Hey, it's not like I see new episodes of Sleepy Hollow until Tuesdays. So I it will almost be like I'm on schedule.

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