Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Sleepy Hollow, Season One, Episode Five: John Doe

A young girls is walking through the woods picking up leaves and a little boy is watching her through the trees.  His clothes are very dated and she asks him if he is lost and wants to play.  When he hesitates, she tells him that it's okay.  He quickly loses sight of her and ends up being chased by a horned warrior on horseback.  He runs until he sees a road, and then crosses.  When the warrior hits the road he disperses into what look like locusts.

Abbie and Ichabod are settling into the cabin and Abbie asks if he wants to stay in this old place.  Ichabod tells Abbie that her definition of old is very different from his and adds that the cabin will be a great change from the motel he has been staying at. Abbie suggests that they speckle the bullet holes and Ichabod turns away.  Abbie has to tell him that it's fine to admit that he doesn't know what a word means and that the cabin is an idle setting for him because it is rustic and by the lake.  Abbie wonders if Corbin meant for them to find this place.  Ichabod struggles to open a razor and Abbie informs that he needs scissors to deal with the plastic. Ichabod then asks if he looks out of place for this century and Abbie assures him that he looks good for two hundred but suggests a change of clothing wouldn't hurt.

They get a call about a child passed out by the road and Abbie and Ichabod decided to go and check it out. When they get there, Abbie learns that witnesses say the boy was unaccompanied and of course Luke has to throw in a comment about wishing that Abbie was unaccompanied as well. When Luke questions whether Abbie is tired of playing babysitter, she tells him that he doesn't have a clue, before being called away by Ichabod.  Ichabod is looking at the boy's hands and points out that his veins have gone black.  Ichabod questions whether this is a common ailment in this time and if the garment the boy is wearing is also time appropriate. Abbie says it looks like he boy got lost on the way back from a renaissance fair.  The boy starts to speak in middle english and when Abbie questions what he is saying, Ichabod tells her that it is the type of English spoken in the middle ages.

Abbie is looking through the missing persons files and tells Ichabod that this is the only hope to identify the boy.  Frank walks over and adds that until then, the kid is a John Doe.  Abbie starts to explain the term John Doe and Ichabod informs Frank that the boy speaks Middle English.  Frank snarks about the kid being from King Arthur's court. Ichabod says that the boy said about the evil girl and Abbie adds that there is no trace of the boy, even in local Amish communities. Frank says that he contacted the CDC and tells Ichabod that they are going to need him to question the John Doe.

When Frank walks away, Luke catches him and says that there has been a lot of talk about Ichabod.  Luke points out that Ichabod was a suspect in a murder and is now a consultant. Frank does not bat an eyelash and asks if Luke is having a problem because of his history with Abbie. When Luke says no, Frank informs him that Ichabod's knowledge of the beheadings make him an important adviser.

The CDC has the hospital on quarantine and Ichabod calls it the stuff of nightmares, adding that this sort of containment will only scare the boy more.  Abbie says that they have to do this to keep the contaminated air contained. Ichabod snarks asking how they survived without plastic. When Ichabod walks over to the member of the CDC, he is told to ask what drugs the boy has taken, where he is from and what he has eaten.  Ichabod finds the questions harsh and says that he plans on treating the boy like the child he is.  Ichabod starts to speak to the boy and we learn that his name is Thomas. Thomas apologizes for the following the evil girl and says that he was forbidden from leaving his home.  Abbie pipes up that they see kids being kidnapped everyday and Ichabod snarks about the boy being taught Middle English. Not perturbed, Abbie points out that this is one way to keep Thomas from asking for help.  Ichabod says that the boys is lost and disoriented.  When Ichabod asks Thomas where he is from, Thomas answers Roanoke.  The CDC officer gets on his radio and quickly announces that he wants all of the hospitals in Roanoke, Virginia contacted.

Back in their work space, Ichabod suggests to Abbie that they are not looking in the right place and that Thomas means Roanoke the first English colony in the new world. Abbie agrees that they found a kid who looked like he stepped off the Mayflower but suggests that this does not mean that a colony that vanished from North Carolina hundreds of years ago has relocated to Sleepy Hollow. Ichabod points out that there have been stranger events recently.  Abbie gets a call saying that Thomas's disease is starting to spread and the EMT who treated him is infected and that a few of the nurses who treated him are sick as well.  Frank worries that this may be an outbreak. Ichabod says that they are onto a theory and Abbie quickly cuts him off and hangs up the phone.  Ichabod says that they have to move quickly because if Thomas carries a plague from half a millenia ago that the effects could apocalyptic. Abbie suggests they head to the woods where they found Thomas.

The EMT who worked on Thomas starts to have a seizure and sees a horseman riding towards him before dying.

In the car, Abbie says that word must have spread about the virus because it looks like people are leaving town.When they get to the location of where Thomas was first sighted, Abbie wonders who was more sarcastic, Jefferson or Adams.  As they walk through the woods do east, Abbie wonders if they are heading in the right direction.  Ichabod pauses when he sees a broken spiderweb about Thomas's height and points out that he still sees the footprints he has been tracking since they began.  Ichabod snarks about Abbie's smart phone.

Luke has a conversation with another officer about Ichabod and reports that they are to keep their heads down and do what they are told. Luke questions what an Oxford history professor knows about serial killings in Sleepy Hollow and wonders if Ichabod is who he says he is.  The officer says that obviously Frank knows something they don't  and suggests that Luke let it go.  Luke says that he is going to make some calls.

Ichabod finds a plant that closes up for days in response to human touch and pronounces that Thomas has been there.  Abbie questions where he learned to track like this and Ichabod replies, "fox hunting." Ichabod adds that though he is pleased that he left his past behind him, his father was a nobleman and he had a regal upbringing. They continue and find different footprints from Thomas's and Ichabod suggests that they belong to the evil girl Thomas mentioned. Abbie points out that they stopped and Ichabod suggests that the girl was never even there to being with.

At the hospital, Frank is talking to the CDC talking about the angles they are looking at. Officer Devon Jones asks why everyone seems much sicker than Thomas. The CDC tech says that immune systems react differently and that Thomas must come from a very different place than theirs.  It seems that Thomas's blood work shows the presence of antibodies and a lack of other present in their culture and there is no evidence that Thomas has ever been vaccinated against anything. The CDC says to inoculate everyone else against this disease that they need to identify it and have come across nothing like it in their data base. Frank informs them that Abbie and Thomas are following Thomas's trail now.

Abbie and Ichabod come to a bog and they stop at a tiny Island. Ichabod picks up a stick and puts it into the water only to have it rapidly sink.  Ichabod then takes a leap of faith and starts to walk. Abbie momentarily panics, then asks how he knew this way would be safe.  Ichabod indicates markings on a tree and says that they indicate a hidden path. They make their way across and into a village.The people come out to meet him and say that they are in Ronoake.  Abbie notices that the villagers are all infected.  Abbie and Ichabod make their way through the village and Abbie says that they all have the black veins but don't seem sick.  They are ushered into a cabin and Ichabod says that Thomas was raised in a community that hasn't changed in hundreds of years.  Ichabod then asks one of the locals why they left Ronoake and learns that the land was cursed by the horseman of pestilence. He infected everyone even the youngest. A ghost appeared to them and guided the colonists there to protect them.  Ichabod asks how come they are all doing so well and learns that the disease cannot effect them in Ronoake but when Thomas left, he brought the pestilence with him. They learn that this is what the horseman wanted all along. Ichabod and Abbie learn that Thomas must return to the colony to keep everyone safe.

Alone, Ichabod warns Abbie that they now have another horseman to deal with. They have to deal with the horseman of pestilence otherwise known as conquest. Ichabod believes that pestilence started this plague hundreds of years ago, but the Ronoake colony contained it and stopped the horseman from riding forth.  Ichabod says if the disease manages to spread this time that the horseman of pestilence will come to Sleepy Hollow and join forces with the horseman of death. Ichabod suggests that bringing Thomas here will be the answer.   As Abbie looks into the woods, she sees a horseman and tells Ichabod that they have to get moving.

Back at the hospital, more people are getting sick, even those wearing protective devices. Ichabod says that the cure seems to lie within the colony but Abbie points out that the CDC is not going to let them take Thomas, especially to a place no one else believes exists. When they arrive at the hospital, they see a bunch of new people infected. When Ichabod checks his arm, he has also been infected. Ichabod believes that he was infected when he first interacted with Thomas.  The CDC quickly take Ichabod into custody, as both he and Abbie struggle. Ichabod suddenly goes limp and goes into a dream state and sees Katrina.  They kiss and Katrina says that Ichabod is not well and she knows this because he is there.

At the hospital, Luke gets a call about Ichabod saying that they have no knowledge of Crane.  Ichabod is still lying in bed and admits to Katrina that he is sick and that others have died from this.  Katina says that they are in purgatory and points to some who are moving on.  Apparently the horseman of death is moving these souls.

Abbie approaches Frank and tells him that he needs to help her get Thomas and Ichabod out of the hospital.  Frank makes it clear that Thomas and Ichabod are not going anywhere and adds that he needs Abbie on the streets, stopping people from entering town.

Ichabod asks Katrina why she is trapped in purgatory, as Abbie heads to the chapel to talk to God.  Abbie asks if Crane will be safe at the lost colony because it is trapped in time like him.  She asks for a sign and when nothing happens Abbie gets up.  A woman walks into the chapel and puts her hand in the holy water.  Abbie gets a flashback to the colony with Ichabod saying that something in the environment keeps the colonists safe.

Back in purgatory, Crane asks why his wife is in purgatory but before she can answers, he is pulled away and awakes back in the present.  Abbie again confronts Frank and argues that she needs to get Thomas and Ichabod to the village, adding that the water there could help them. Abbie points out that water is used to purify and Frank asks if they need to be baptized in the water.  When Frank asks if this is really going to work, Abbie replies that she has no choice but to believe.

Frank says that when the CDC move to transfer Ichabod and Thomas that Abbie can break them out.  Frank promises to cover her and do his best to transfer the remaining victims there, if this turns out to be the cure. Abbie drives off in an ambulance with Crane and Thomas.  Later we see the three of them in the woods and Crane tells Abbie that Katrina is in a place of purgatory for souls caught between good and evil.  Crane stops and tells Abbie that they are losing Thomas, as the horseman of pestilence makes his way through the woods.  Abbie says that Thomas is weak but still has a heartbeat. When Abbie suggests they get moving, Crane says that he is weak and suggests Abbie goes to Ronoake and bring the colonists back with her.  Abbie does not believe that she can go on without Ichabaod and even quips that they all look the same to her.  Abbie injects Crane with adrenaline as the horseman moves ever closer.  They get to the colony with the horseman hot on their heels and the horseman enters the village.  When Crane stands up in the water, the horseman disappears.

Ichabod tells Abbie that the waters provide a cure and they suddenly find themselves back in the woods, watching as the woods disappear.  Ichabod realises that Thomas and the other settlers were dead all along and that Thomas returned to flesh and blood when he entered their world. Ichabod tells Abbie that she stopped the horseman because she had faith in being one of the witnesses.  Abbie's phone rings and it's Frank, who informs her that everyone is recovering.  Abbie tells Icahbod that everyone in town is going to be fine and adds that she knows how hard it must have been hard for Ichabod to adjust.  Abbie adds that she thought that Ichabod might choose to stay in the colony and say that Ichabod belongs in Sleepy Hollow in the here and now.  Ichabod suggests that they head home and they walk out of the woods.  Ichabod says that they are going to need more than faith if and when the horseman of death returns.

In the woods we see a horse by the river alone until the headless horseman rises out of the river.  In his path he leaves fire in the woods.

Okay, I actually think this episode of Sleepy Hollow is the best one so far.  It depend on giving us the constant reminder about how special Americans are and how the yanks are destined to save the world because of this specialness.  It did however choose to play with a historical fact but I wasn't upset by this one simply because no one really knows what happened to the colony; whereas last week the decided to play with the Boston teaparty in order to make their narrative work.

I do like that Abbie finally got around to believing something.   I know that Abbie is Sleepy Hollow's Scully but she has already seen enough in five episodes that the whole doubting Thomas routine was getting quite irritating.   I also like that she was the one who ended up saving Ichabod.  It helped to balance their partnership more.  This was also aided by the fact that Abbie had to reassure Ichabod on several occasions during the episode.

As aforementioned, I do believe that this was the best episode to date but that does not make it good.  I still find that Sleepy Hollow takes itself far too seriously and do not find it interesting to watch.  It's the sort of thing to turn to rather than watching paint dry, but certainly not for real entertainment.