Sleepy Hollow: 1.09 - Sanctuary
Spoilers ahead - if you don't want to know about episode 9, don't read below
Ah, the thanksgiving or "holidays" episode of the great American serial. The tradition of wrapping thanksgiving into TV serials is a long one, and it's quite fitting that Sleepy Hollow, which owes so much to the history of Modern America's beginnings, chose to dwell on this topic in this latest instalment. Whilst families are getting together, and Jenny is planning a feast, Ichabod is several centuries lost with his witchy beloved imprisoned in the beyond and feeling more than a little blue. Luckily, another strange turn of events is just around the corner to take his mind off things when a rich heiress visits her new house, a place well know to Ichabod's Katrina, and finds herself kidnapped by the foliage. Well Billionaire heiresses don't just go missing, so Crane and Abbie are soon hunting her down in the decidedly creepy mansion with a real roots problem. Abbie is being sent visions about Katrina coming to this house to have her baby, a child unknown to her husband, and Ichabod gets all horticultural once he learns of the evil that shrubbery has done him in the past and now.
It sounds silly, doesn't it? I always remember watching The Evil Dead for the first time from a highly dubious source and giggling with incomprehension at the bit with the trees taking advantage of one of Ash's female companions. Sleepy Hollow had me in the same mood this week. You see evil vegetation doesn't chill my bones or turn my blood cold, heck it barely does anything other than put me in fear of the titters. The tree man and his designs on the annoying rich woman - not the greatest single story idea of the series so far. This haunted house element was all atmosphere and scurrying around in the dark, and probably best when Ichabod went pruning with his axe and a couple of centuries of angst. More interesting were the efforts to fill out Jenny and Captain Irving as the supporting characters, with Irving's estranged family visiting and the tensions evident there - what a cop with attachment issues, no! A few new mysteries started there as well - just what has caused Irvings daughters disability?
The main development though was the news of the Crane offspring. Why hadn't Katrina told Ichabod, what has become of the child, it is imprisoned like its mother? Well, you, like me will have to wait and see for future episodes and I for one will wade through a duller one like this weeks for the very tempting sounding "The Golem" next up.
The promo looks great with witches and shit, so here's hoping for a great mid-season finale as Ichabod searches for his son. As the series broadens its scope a little its perhaps inevitable that the action may get more prosaic or less bonkers, but here's hoping that the putting history, genres and fables in the blender approach endures as this is why the last few episodes have been such great entertainment. This week was weaker, but still good clean nonsensical fun...
Sleepy Hollow is shown in the UK on the Universal Channel and iTunes as well