Sleepy Hollow is finally getting somewhere! Well…if you asked me where it was going as we head towards the season finale, I would have to say, “I don’t know.” But, if you asked me where it was headed as far as Ichabbie’s concerned, I’d say, “We’re headed towards the promise land, so don’t be worried.” This episode, “Dark Mirror”, probably gave us the clearest sign of the pairing coming together with this image:
— Sleepy Hollow Addict (@SleepyAddicts) March 7, 2016
I was mildly surprised to see Abbie’s lips on Ichabod’s forehead. So surprised, that I’m still not sure I saw what I saw. But it’s true. Anyways, let’s put a pin in this and talk about what happened in the episode itself.
How long has it been since we’ve seen a monster talk? Serilda wasn’t a “monster” per se, but she’s the last person I can remember who did talk at Team Witness to some degree. In any event, having the Jersey Devil aka Dr. Leeds monologue to Team Witness was a fascinating turn to the Monster of the Week. I hope we get more monologuing monsters in the future.
Dr. Leeds is a dark scientist who is all about gene splicing. For what reason? I don’t know, but it seems like it’s for the reason Patton Oswalt complained about in one of his standup comedies –”Science: We’re all about coulda, not shoulda.” Leeds just wants to put animals together just because he can. Are you that bored, Leeds, that you want to defy nature? How much white privilege can be injected into science that leads a person to think they can create something they shouldn’t? Yes, I said white privilege, because if we’re being real, scientists at this time still thought that Africans were “scientifically” sub-human, saying they had smaller craniums and less-developed brains. Old-timey scientists also thought Africans were less developed because of, as the scientists would say, Africans’ closeness to nature. The hubris of science then (and, in some cases, even now) relies on the thought that nature can be controlled and that all who respect nature are somehow dumb. Soapbox done. In any case, Leeds is a stupid idiot who ruins his life by becoming a genetic nightmare. Again: how much hubris do you have to have to drink a concoction created by the genetic makeup of several animals and still believe that you’ll turn out all right? IDK.
Anyways, Ichabod knew the Jersey Devil when he was just Leeds, and even then, Ichabod thought he was a weirdo. It’s something when Ichabod has a choice between leaving the person he hates–Benjamin Franklin–to join Leeds, and Ichabod decides to just stay with Franklin, who probably now seems more sane to Ichabod in comparison to Leeds’ off-the-hinges personality.
Also, over the course of the hundreds of years the Jersey Devil’s been around (how he’s existed so long, I don’t know), he somehow came into contact with the Hidden One, and now he’s a loyal servant. The Hidden One meets with the Jersey devil once again after he’s killed some runners (well, one runner and one parkour athlete), and tasks him with getting his eternal hourglass ready, ‘cause it’s time for the world order to begin.
I’ll go ahead and say that Team Witness actually fail this time, but the failure had to happen, because the show’s plot has to move along. What’s really at stake in this episode is the soul and mind of Abbie, because she finally has to come clean about her dependence on that crazy symbol. From some of the Jersey Devil’s writings, we did learn more about the Hidden One and his connection with the symbol. In particular, we learned that the Hidden One has a brother, who was always in the light, while the Hidden One was always in the dark. The Hidden One made himself appear the victim to Pandora, who helped him destroy (or imprison?) his brother. However, even with this knowledge, we still don’t know if the symbol truly belongs to the Hidden One or to the brother in the light. I can only assume that the Hidden One’s brother is good, since he was out in the open, so I hope that the symbol is actually associated with him (I wouldn’t put it past the Hidden One to co-opt his brother’s symbol.) If the symbol is actually associated with the good brother, it would slightly go towards my theory that Abbie connected with something good when she saw that symbol. Maybe that cave was actually a shrine or temple dedicated to that brother!
Ichabod and Jenny have long since known that something was off with Abbie, even though she was laughing with them at the breakfast table earlier that day. But when Ichabod finds out that Abbie’s been nurturing this symbol, he freaks out. He exclaims that the symbol is evil and, in so many words, states how he doesn’t get why Abbie would keep guard over such a thing. But there’s no time to get into the discussion about the whys and hows, because the Jersey Devil finds them!
When the Jersey Devil catches Abbie and Ichabod in his hideaway, he, of course, starts discussing how the Hidden One is the only way forward in the coming new order and then he unleashes his attack. He completely knocks Abbie out twice, and poisons Ichabod with his scorpion tail before leaving, thinking his nemesis is dead. Ichabod’s quickly dying, and to keep Ichabod focused on staying alive, Abbie gets Ichabod to talk her through making an antidote (because somehow Ichabod would just know the recipe). Right when she’s about to give the antidote to Ichabod, she trips and the antidote goes flying out of the mortar. That mysterious symbol, which has been cropping up all through this episode, including as a charm on a necklace in the Jersey Devil’s hideout, finally gets to Abbie one too many times. As she stares at the necklace, Ichabod’s fading away. It’s only when Abbie can’t hear Ichabod anymore that she realizes she might have just let him die. She quickly makes another antidote and force-feeds it to Ichabod, hoping against hope that he’s not dead. Even after her focus on it put Ichabod in even greater peril, Abbie still has to grab onto the necklace to keep herself calm. Ichabod miraculously comes back to, and Abbie realizes that she has to do something about this symbol.
Finally, back at home, she tells Ichabod about what the symbol means to her. Whether or not it’s a sign of evil, it’s something that kept her at peace while she spent her Year in Solitude. Ichabod chides himself for judging her, and states that he knew how some men who had gone through war had to do whatever they could to keep their minds together. It took a lot for them to get back settled into everyday life, and sometimes, they would keep certain habits or mementos that would help calm them. He apologizes for not understanding how she’s going through the exact same PTSD. Abbie finally, FINALLY, utters the words we’ve been hoping she’d say:
— Sleepy Hollow (@SleepyHollowFOX) March 5, 2016
“I need your help, Crane.” We’ve been wanting her to ask for Ichabod’s help ever since she came back from the dead zone! True to Abbie, she waits until she reaches a breaking point to ask for help, but at least she asked. Sometimes, you have to get to that breaking point before you actually realize you have a problem. Thankfully, it’s not too late for Abbie to get the help she needs and the support from Ichabod she’s been denying.
As I wrote above, even though the biggest development was Abbie reaching out to her Witness partner, Team Witness doesn’t stop the Jersey Devil from completing his mission (despite them blowing him up with the help of lightning). The Jersey Devil’s sacrificial blood achieves the goal of reigniting the Sands of Time (as I call it) and the Hidden One’s hourglass is back to full power. Now the countdown until the New World Order begins in earnest.
Meanwhile, Jenny and Joe are having relationship problems, if you call getting a new house a relationship problem. Look, I roll with Jenny on almost everything, but getting mad at Joe for getting you a new trailer because your old one is tear apart at the seams? GIRL, WHAT?! I know Jenny’s stuff was in a certain order and whatever, but it’s not like Joe didn’t think any of that stuff was important! He put it all in storage for Pete’s sake! I couldn’t even get to Jenny’s level of outrage, especially since it looked like that trailer cost a pretty penny. I get that Jenny’s main issue in relationships is giving over trust to someone else, but come on, now. Joe knows Jenny well, and I doubt Joe would try to hurt Jenny by throwing away her stuff. And I know that technically, you and your loved one are supposed to come to an agreement when it comes to finding a place to live. BUT STILL, HE BOUGHT YOU A NEW HOUSE, JENNY.
All right, some parting thoughts:
No Sophie Foster or Betsy Ross: It goes to show how needless Sophie and Betsy are that I completely forgot about them. I understand why the show feels like it should keep adding characters in order to flesh out the world, but without airtime being devoted to Sophie and Betsy, everything runs so much more smoothly. We don’t have to waste time dealing with a Fake Abbie and her Fake Abbie interjections, nor do we have to waste time going back to whatever miraculous thing Betsy may or may not have done with Ichabod. It was all about Team Witness, and even more important, it was all about Abbie and Ichabod and their bond. They’ll be back (Jessica Camacho is in some of the upcoming promo pictures), but for the fourth season, “Dark Mirror” should prove as a lesson about how characters should always add something to a show and should be good as to be missed by the audience.
The biggest Ichabbie moment yet: Abbie seems to have finally gotten to the point where she’ll show outward emotion towards Ichabod. Unfortunately, it’s also when he’s unconscious and near death (again). But we’re here now. She’s hugged and kissed him, and now she’s asking for his help. If you haven’t breathed a sigh of relief yet this season when it comes to these two, you can breathe it now. All they have now are each other.
What did you think of this episode? Give your opinions in the comments section below!
Monique Jones is an entertainment blogger/journalist. She’s written for Entertainment Weekly, Black Girl Nerds,Racialicious, and many others. She runs JUST ADD COLOR (originally called COLOR) and has introduced a new online magazine, COLOR BLOCK Magazine. You can follow her on Twitter at @moniqueblognet and the official Twitter for JUST ADD COLOR and COLORBLOCK Magazine,@COLORwebmag.