Sleepy Hollow Season 1 Eps 7-9 (TV Show Review)

Sleepy Hollow is one of those shows that kind of slips under the radar for a while before quickly coming out explosively. The first six episodes, while really good in almost all respects, still skirted with some expected stuff. The stakes were high, the tension was always high, but still the show felt somewhat limited in scope. As you’ve no doubt seen from my previous reviews, I really enjoyed the six episodes, in particular the chemistry between the two leads Nicole Beharie and Tom Mison, who might as well be the 2013-2014 television programming season’s breakout stars for me.

Episodes seven to nine did much to up the tension even more, and increased the scope of everything, whether we talk about character backstory, or the stakes involved, or just the character drama involved. Additionally, episode eight in particular hinted in a big way that there is a very big story arc involved for the first season. Additionally, episodes seven and eight marked the return of the Horseman to the show and that in itself is worth every single second of those episodes. And episode nine really did a number with giving us more of Katrina’s backstory and had a huge reveal for Ichabod. Suffice to say, I really enjoyed these three episodes.

Sleepy Hollow Logo 0001In episode seven, we get a recounting of the events of the Midnight Ride, the famous event of the American Civil War which marked a turning point (or so I understand). Of course, it is worked in that the Horseman of Death was involved, as was Ichabod, except in a tangential way. Given Ichabod’s current status, we learn the truth of those events and see how it has impacted the present, and get hints of the Horseman’s latest objective, which involves killing off all the Freemasons in the town of Sleepy Hollow. The episode also deals with something major that I was really looking forward from the get go: what if the heroes are able to capture the Horseman? How would they contain him and counter his powers? That is essentially the concluding scene of the episode.

In episode eight, we pick up straight off from the end of the previous episode and we finally learn the identity of the Horseman. The demon Moloch transformed a normal human being into the Horseman of Death, and in this episode we finally get to see how he did it, why he did it, and what the Horseman’s personal vendetta against Ichabod is. It was something completely unexpected and I was pretty shocked when the reveal happened. Let it not be said that the show’s writers don’t have a singular creative vision for keeping viewers interested. For me, this episode marked a huge turning point in my love for the show and this is where I was convinced for sure that Sleepy Hollow is indeed one of the best new shows on television for this season’s programming.

In episode nine, we step away from the Horseman for a bit and delve into an old mystery of Sleepy Hollow, something that ends up having a deeply personal connection to Ichabod given that Katrina is involved in it, very directly. One of the mysterious things about the show has been what happened to Katrina after Ichabod was apparently killed fighting the Horseman. It is something that remained uncovered by the story until this episode, though we know that she is caught in a sort of purgatory by Moloch and is kept imprisoned on his whim. Episode eight gave us a big reason for why that might be, but episode nine really goes to great lengths to explain more, and I loved every moment of it.

Episode nine is where the grim darkness of the show really began to hit home. This was a very personal episode for both Ichabod and Abby and there were several moments where I almost cried because of how desperate things seem to be for them. This was also the episode where Ichabod really let his frustrations out and let his pent-up anger take reign. It was quite fascinating to see him let loose with his emotions, a stark difference from how calm and controlled and British-ly proper he usually is.

At the risk of repeating myself from the previous reviews, the chemistry between the show’s leads really has been electric. There have been a few hints of romantic attachment between them, but it has thankfully been kept incredibly subtle and low-key, which is just perfect. Abby is not in a place where she wants to deal with something like that and Ichabod is still in love with Katrina and is focused on saving her. Having the two of them get romantically attached to each other would be counter-productive and isn’t anything that I’m looking for in the show at this time, especially given the big reveal of episode nine. Nicole Beharie and Tom Mison have been damn awesome throughout and it is their performance that has really helped the show be such a big success, at least for me.

All the supporting characters, whether we talk Orlando Jones’ Frazier Irving, the Horseman, Moloch, Katia Winter’s Katrina Crane, Lyndie Greenwood’s Jenny Mills, or any of the others, they have all been supremely good. Jones and Winter in particular are two of the major supporting cast and their performances have been as great as that of the two leads. Every time that I tune in to the show, I can’t get enough of any of them. As a single unit, the entire cast is one of the best I’ve seen in a television show for quite a while, especially when the genre is horror-thriller. Each character is wonderfully developed as well, so that helps in the overall sense.

Sleepy Hollow Cast 0001

These three episodes didn’t really have any pacing issues, not that I could spot any. Episode nine kind of got dragged out a bit too much, but the second half was jaw-droppingly awesome so I am most definitely not complaining about that.

The show’s production values remain top-notch as ever. This isn’t a show that requires that much in the way of special effects, and everything is quite low-key but in that framework and context, the production team is still doing some great work. Watching the Headless Horseman, or Moloch, or the monster from episode nine is always a thrill, as are the recreations of the Civil War era, whenever we get to see those.

So yes, overall, nine episodes in and Sleepy Hollow still remains a top favourite.

More Sleepy Hollow Season 1: Eps 1-3, Eps 4-6.

Posted on January 12, 2014, in Review Central, Sleepy Hollow, TV Show Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

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