Sleepy Hollow: Deliverance Review

Childbirth has rarely seemed more devilish than in tonight's Sleepy Hollow. Here's our review...

The name of tonight’s Sleepy Hollow might have been “Deliverance,” but if we are going to borrow the titles from cinema classics about the worse kind of abuse, perhaps Rosemary’s Baby might have been more appropriate? Yep, Katrina is having a baby, and like Mia Farrow’s big screen trials and tribulations, it made for one hell of a delivery process.

The episode begins with some early and ever so fun Rip Van Wrinkle teasings, which multitask here as a “Get out and Vote” public service announcement. But I honestly couldn’t help but love seeing Ichabod reprimand viewers for treating midterm elections with more indifference than “American Idolatry.” Of course, they have to walk it back and give a history lesson of how the voting process has improved in 230 years, but the point was still well made.

Unsurprisingly, the focus of this Sleepy Hollow was on picking up directly after where the last episode left off: namely with Henry having his mama ingest one nasty looking bug. It was so nasty, in fact, even the Headless Horseman showed disgust this week when Henry began revealing his and Moloch’s new machinations. And just in case you thought that the Headless Horseman was still a conceivable threat to our heroes, Henry takes him out like he’s removing a decapitated bug from his living room. Yeah, this may be based on “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” but there is officially nothing left that’s legendary about this Horseman.

But the surprise of the night, at least for myself, was that Katrina was able to escape her new Hessian captors with great ease and quickly became part of the Scooby Gang with Ichabod and Abbie. Despite being the object of Ichabod’s ostensible desires since the first episode of season one, Katrina has shared fewer scenes with Ichabod in the 21st century than Abbie has had with Andy—which is remarkable considering Andy has been dead since the pilot. Seeing them together was curiously uncomfortable for these spouses as it was to watch. But it was also fascinating.

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For understandable reasons, Ichabod has developed trust issues with Katrina. First, she tells him that she is a witch. Who couldn’t along go with that? Then she reluctantly reveals that she also mothered their child without his knowledge. Oh and also, she was there at the secretly covered up death of his former fiancée. And did we mention she’s shacking up with the Headless Horseman these days?

Ichabod has much to distrust from his bewitching bride, yet for the first time in a long while, I have trouble doing the same. For the past dozen or so episodes, I have been predicting that she was secretly in league with Moloch. Yet, he did call her a “Shard of Hellfire,” and if she were his servant in any way, surely she’d also be open to being his vessel? Being mama to this network Anti-Christ has got to at least include free parking and other such indulgences?

But she was firmly on the pro-choice stance of not delivering Moloch to his apocalyptic term, which makes it much more difficult for me to see the shadow in her shady disposition. In any event, she allows Ichabod to have another of the best scenes of the season: whenever he shares time with John Noble. Henry Parrish and his old man going at it, this time in Frank Irving’s psychiatry wing, is better than any monster of the week beastie the make-up team can come up with. And Ichabod reaches out ever so earnestly to his son, only to be turned away. So, it would seem Henry chooses Moloch. But like Ichabod, I do not buy Henry’s protestations that he is completely gone. It’s probably just the tone of the series, but I still predict some redemption, even if it is in death, for Ichabod’s junior.

Eventually, Ichabod and Abbie discover that there is a macguffin, compliments of Benjamin Franlkin, which will stop Moloch’s birth. Quicker than you can say third act shootout, there is plenty of CGI sorcery on hand allowing them to stop Moloch’s monstrous appearance into our world.

As a whole, this was a crackerjack hour that while full of predictability also featured some of the nicer character moments of the season. Further, it appears that Katrina is no longer living with the Horseman, which I must say was a dead end plotline. They have delayed the inevitable love triangle long enough. The ramifications of seeing Katrina truly joining the 21st century, beyond her Ichabod (and audience) pleasing discovery of modern “Goth” witch clothes, offer plenty of new story avenues, such as already glimpsed when Abbie excused herself from Ichabod and Katrina’s first official reunion. For that reason, “Deliverance” really did birth some great story developments for our heroes.

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3.5 out of 5