Sunday, October 19, 2014

Sleepy Hollow (S2) Review - Episode 3 - Root of All Evil - "The other side of the coin."

Once more unto the breach for some Sleepy Hollow. Last time we got sent into the mangle. Are we out now?  No! My pinkie is still wedged in there! Ow!!!

So what is the "Root of All Evil"? Sometimes it's TV writers tormenting you. Other times it's, as the saying goes, money. How will money play into this episode?

Well I won't tell you let. Let's get to the troubles remaining from the last episode.


Irving remains locked in a psychiatric ward. When Abbie and Ichabod try to talk to him, they find they are barred by his lawyer. Henry Parrish.

So they are cut off, until later Ichabod comes up with a scheme. He visits another patient who seems to not entirely to communicate. Through that, he's able to contact Irving, and give him the bad news.

"This is so embarrassing. I didn't think you'd find out I was visiting other
patients."

Irving is in a bind. He's agreed to having Henry as his lawyer. And Henry has promised to get him out. It's been his only good news in a while. Without him, he may spend the rest of his life trapped in a psychiatric hospital.


What can he do?



Katrina continue to settle in, and spy on her son and the Horseman. She taunts Henry some, and points out that he's curious about her. And he has had an interest in her mother's old items. He's also moved into and restored the house he was born in. (You may remember that Ichabod burnt it down last season.) That is some commitment.

But he also chooses to take the bed he was born in, and then burn it up. Is it his contempt? Or is it his conflict?

Henry is still struggling to get home renovation.

Also, Katrina has gotten a little under the Horseman's skin.


Luckily, on the Jenny front, she's out of jail. 

She's still not in a great mood, as she still needs to do community service. And Reyes is really on her back. As she is being released, it does feel like she is goading Jenny some, comparing her to her deceased mother.

"Hope you don't mind if I am directly antagonistic, without really explaining?"

But her mood only worsens when she uses Abbie's password to look at Sheriff Reyes files. There she learns, as Abbie knew, that Reyes had contact with their mom back in the day. But she also sees that Reyes is the person that ended up getting their mother locked up in a psychiatric hospital. There their mom committed suicide, and left them to be orphans.

This surprises Abbie. But Jenny is just pissed. And she's angry that Abbie didn't tell her more before, and that she isn't as willing to go yell at Reyes.


Meanwhile, Henry is quite busy. He needs to do some banking.

"Give it a second and the teller will smell what else I deposited."
The result of that is that a teller at the bank holds the place hostage. Then Reyes shoots her.

"Okay! So it's agreed that nether of us want a free toaster."

Abbie and Ichabod are at a loss as to what has happen. Abbie can't believe that as nice and peaceful as that teller was that she'd snap.

Looking at the security footage they see Henry enter and deposit some money, and then they see the teller come off strange after picking up one of the coins deposited. Then she secrets the coin away.


"Hey, Chetley? How come we aren't called pounders? Get it?"

Ichabod recalls his history with coinage from the war. He had worked with Benedict Arnold to disrupt coin counterfeiting in the colonies. It was an effort by the British government to disrupt the colonial economy.

Operatives known as shovers would produce fake coinage to attempt to flood the market. It is an interesting area. Mostly people focus on war through arms. But economic disruption is an ancient go to tool. In looking at any conflict it can be interesting to see how money was used.


Ichabod ties some strange coins they found with a change in Benedict Arnold. He suddenly turned traitor to his friends. He surmises that the coin must have the power to bring out your hidden dark side, your worst thoughts.

But they don't know where the coin is now. It turns out it was taken by a young man working at a florist. His internal darkness drives him to build a bomb and blow up his boss.


Because of all of this, the coin ends up in police custody. But before they can get to it, Henry does. Seeing as Henry has an identity setup as a lawyer, he comes in to talk with his client, the bomber, and steals back the coin.

Ichabod tries to reason with him, but he proves diffident. Henrey is enjoying Ichabod's strife.

Then Ichabod gets in a talk with Reyes. When he tries to spark on argument about why he's free to visit the sheriff's office, she asks about his identification papers. ...And Ichabod has to go and get them.


This is something I am surprised by. No one in the last year has bothered to help Ichabod get the needed paperwork, He would need this stuff to function in many ways, like if he had to go to the hospital, he crosses the FBI, etc. I know Abbie and Irving may have an issue faking it. But Jenny or the Masons could have done it quickly. Sloppy work, team.


So Ichabod will want to avoid Reyes for awhile. Also, Reyes does seem focused on the team, Does she know something? Does she have some sense of an issue?

This is how new characters get added to the show. They interrupt a
Walk & Talk, and become part of the show.

We also get introduced to a new character this episode. Nick Hawley. He's our ner'er-do-well newcomer. A roguish fortune hunter who's worked with Jenny and helped her acquire items. But he works for the cash. He's our quasi-Indiana Jones/Lara Croft/Nate Drake.

He has some knowledge of evil coins like the one they are looking for. It ties to a set of 30 silver coins from antiquity. Quickly Ichabod figure that the 30 silver coins are tied to Judas's paymen for betrayal in the bible. ...So does that mean Judas was used? Or did his act curse the coins?

Now they have to get the coin...and they have to figure out how to handle the coin, without being corrupted.

It isn't long before they discover that Jenny has run off, and stolen a rifle from Hawley. They know she may have been corrupted. Abbie thinks that she'll be the target. But later she learns via GPS data that Jenny is heading to where Reyes has gone hunting.

"Are you mad? We surely can't do this without a zany plan."

Meanwhile, Ichabod and Hawley quickly figure out that one thing that can contain the coins is sanctified stained glass, like that found in churches. So Hawley uses Ichabod as a distraction as he "acquires" some holy strained glass.

So they have a little adventure. And it continues a theme of these two bickering with each other. Dawley tweaks Ichabod. Ichabod tries to outshine Dawley. Ichabod thinks Dawley is just a mercenary. Dawley thinks Ichabod is too far up his own backside.


With a method to capture the coin in place, they begin a chase for the coin.

Jenny is out in the woods preparing to kill Reyes. As she preps, Abbie and the others approach. Abbie tries to talk her down, and finally offers to take the shot for her, trying to make the point she should have and wants to stand by her sister. She knows her sister has often felt isolated and on her own. She doesn't want her to feel that way.

"Jenny. You know that will only make me mad."

So they get the coin away from Jenny, and contain it. Jenny is freed. And Reyes seems unaware of anything, which is a relief as I don't want to see Jenny back in jail this season.


In the aftermath, Abbie and Jenny reconcile. With all the stress of the finale of last season and the start of this season, they've probably needed a moment to restore how committed they are to each other.

Hawley disappears with the coin, much to Ichabod's annoyance. But he later reappears, saying it would be more valuable to find the whole set of coins. I guess this is supposed to be his excuse to himself for hanging around more and helping at some future point, (Also it's a reason for him to not just go sell a clearly evil item.)  He doesn't want to just say that he's curious about what they are dealing with.

"Don't leave home without it? What the devil are you referencing now,
lieutenant?"

He also gives Ichabod an ID! He's now legit in an illegitimate way.


NEXT TIME! It's time for the Piper Pied!It's time for a magic find! Time for some song and dance! Time to show to rhyme I can't!

____

The show continues to show the escalation of the war. Henry is slowing corrupting and turning people. But so far it is a little game, to keep the good guys off balance.

Henry even has built himself a model of Sleepy Hollow. Like a general he can track and plot his war on the world.



And Reyes perplexes. She is hard. Did you see walk into the bank and drop the armed teller in a flash? She seems to be pushing Jenny for some reason, and trying to reign in Abbie. It could almost be called hard parenting. Or, it could be a way to try and divide them.

I just don't know what her deal is. She is admitting to some things with Abbie, but she's holding back. But she is sharing. She even is breaking some rules to let Abbie have the records of her mother's time hospitalized.


Then Abbie learns that her mom was haunted all the time by images of demons. It was overwhelming and confusing her. It finally drove her to kill herself. Moloch targeted her.


Just like Jenny, she was put away for admitting what happen. It is just what's haunted their steps their whole lives. And mom was another victim of it.

So why is Reyes sharing. Guilt? Obligation? A hidden truth?


And we have out new guy. Hawley. He's our scoundrel. And like Hook over on Once Upon A Time, I don't trust him, or overly like him. But I generally am suspicious of his type. He will likely grow into a member of the team. ...Unless he really is on the other side. But he will no doubt help add to the level of action on the show.

And the good guys bench is really thin these days.


One issue is some of the effects in this episode. When they go into the forest to find Jenny, Ichabod notes all the black eagles in the trees. They are a sign of the power of the coin. And when I saw them in the episode, I couldn't help but notice how fake they looked. They just didn't work.


I would be tempted to compare it to Birdemic, but it isn't that fake or bad. The movement of many of them felt really unnatural. It just distracted me a little, and made me laugh. Of course they are unnatural birds in the show, but I don't think that was the intent. You'll have to see if you agree.