Sleepy Hollow took a step back in the right direction with Monday night's episode "For The Triumph of Evil" but I'm still not convinced it knows where it is going. A case in point being another freak of the week episode.
To further drive home that point Abbie once again made it clear that seven years of this are ahead of them. Really? Seven years of one demon at a time? What kind of army is this? Who's in charge?
If it is our mirror demon buddy, then he has a lot to learn about evil hordes. Is this really what the writers have in store for us? At least Katrina wasn't around to drop cryptic clues. And speaking of the absent Katrina, Katia Winter who portrays Katrina has now been demoted to fourth place in the new, new opening.
I liked the new opening. It was stylistically cool, neatly paced and very informative. Too bad the "previously on Sleepy Hollow" bit told us the same thing just seconds later.
So before I turn this into another b*tch fest about what I didn't like, let's talk about the good stuff.
The Sandman himself was very well conceived and it also had roots in American Indian mythology as, "Ro' kenhrontyes". Well played. The Producers said they would dig deep into mythology and they succeeded here. The Sandman reminded me of the "Pale Man" of Pan's Labyrinth fame. A ghoul with a capital G.
His power was also well adapted to the story. It seems if you deny your past or someone you love or trusted then your betrayal has earthly consequences that first plays out in a dream. Turning a blind eye does not serve you well and Abbie's denial of her sister's childhood claims finally came back to haunt her.
(During that final fight with the Sandman when Crane lost his arm to the sand I thought he was going to draw out the ancient Indian symbol in it to ward off the demon. A missed opportunity there.)
If there is another thing that Sleepy Hollow does well it is the inclusion of minorities. The American Indian got representation in this episode and theirs is a culture rich in mysticism, faith in their forebears and a healthy respect of nature. There is much to be mined here.
I thought Tom Mison did an excellent job expressing his pain when he learned of the fate of the Mohawks. He was stunned. They were the model of what was to be the structure of their newborn nation. How could such a rich culture be just cast away?
Anyone that reads this blog can tell you I am a big fan of symbolism. The mirror makes it return to Sleepy Hollow and I always find this an effective device. Mirrors are literally and figuratively a reflection of our selves. They are evocative of portals and they often expose a side of us we would rather not see.
To have demons pass through them or invoke them as dark reflections of our past is always bonus time for me. (It must be the Fringe fanatic in me.)
Doors are good too!
Especially the kind of door that beckons you in a dream state. Red doors are especially forbidding as their mythology goes all the way back to the Old Testament. Fans of the TV show, "Being Human" know what kind of importance doors can pllay.
Once again, Sleepy Hollow used the Dream State as a device. Some may find this tiresome but I don't think it's worn out it's welcome yet. It better not, it seems the only way Katrina can communicate with Crane. Dreams are rich in symbolism and their use should provide a worthy mechanism for this show. Hopefully other culture's dream lore will find a way into this show.
Anyone else get an X-Files vibe when the car rolled into the scene? Mulder and Scully were always arriving at the scene in a car, especially after a commercial break. To have the car enter upside down was a treat. Not subverting but inverting our expectations!
Are we to understand that everything hangs in the balance with our two main characters?
The "Batcave" of Ichabod and Abbie is a treasure trove of clues and symbology. I wonder ifit will remain static or will new things be sprinkled in every week? I think I saw a Raven and definitely a bust of George Washington. Was there a mirror or is that just asking demons to walk in
Here's a gripe to close out this post. How the heck did Irving find the Batcave so quickly? I think we all can assume he knows more than he is letting on. The sign gag was funny but seeing the ex-boyfriend was "ugh" worthy.
So, like I said, a step in the right direction. Richer mythology, funny gags, cool symbolism and minority inclusion. Just lose the freak of the week thing!
(Unless it is the Headless Horseman, I love that guy. Can't wait till he gets his head back!)