Sunday, February 28, 2016

Sleepy Hollow, Season 3, Episode 12: Sins of the Father

Much of this episode was a monster of the week episode – and it was perfect for that.

Our main enemy was a ghoul controlled by Atticus Nevins – the old enemy who worked with old August Corbin (the old Sheriff, Joe’s dad, Jenny and Abbie’s mentor who guided them to the supernatural) who was using the monster for his own nefarious means and to ostensibly hold on to his crumbling empire (what with him being badly gutted by Pandora and then having to go on the run, all kinds of old lieutenants are now muscling in on his former territory and now being badly icked).

The gang does their usual excellent job of following twists and turns, running down clues, discovering the man who was actually coming to them for help was actually the one behind it all along, followed by a big shiny fight with the monster which they eventually destroy… though with Atticus escaping

I’m brushing over all of this not because it’s not good – because it was: it was well acted, well paced and great fun to watch – but because they details don’t matter to the overall show. It was fun, it was good and it was a great backdrop to approach what this episode was really about: recap and review

Everyone has gone through some various issues these last few episodes and this episode puts them all in one place for us to examine and recap to remember where we are.

The case lets us see Jenny, Joe, Abbie, Ichabod and Sophie work together – and continue to do so well

We have Abbie, struggling badly with her mental health after her ordeal in the catacombs. She’s hurt and hurting and having trouble adapting and getting back to where she was before. Ichabod is simultaneously caring while not intruding, similarly Jenny acknowledges Abbie has a problem, is there for her, but not pushing it beyond what Abbie is comfortable with. This is important, it’s vital they’re there to care for her but not to push past things she isn’t ready to deal with yet. When Abbie says she’s processing something or not ready to deal with something, they back off. I appreciate that a lot.

There’s also the Mill’s father – he’s met both sisters this episode. Neither of them lace into him with huge amounts of rage, but both make it clear that they’re not his biggest fans either. They strike a balance between not ruling out a relationship with him, but also not letting him just pick up as a father either. They both centre their mother in their discussion and what she had to struggle with with the supernatural and mental illness (a special concern to Abbie) alone. They don’t rake him over the coals but their disapproval is there and sharp. Again, it’s nicely done with a nice insight into their issues, their history and their concerns. When he offers to help Abbie with what she’s going through she declines – because she has people for that. Read: she has a family and he’s not really in it.

Which also works well with Joe’s concerns and issues with his father who he fought neglected him, addressing some of them and growing closer to Jenny.

We have some growing development of Pandora and the Hidden One – after the hints last week, it’s again circled around this week that Pandora is coming to resent the Hidden One’s abusive control and treatment of her

And some more meta – several episodes ago we had Reynolds meeting with some shadowy guy who was interested in Abbie and apparently knew about the supernatural. This episode that same guy again contacts Reynolds, still interested in Abbie. He’s also the one behind Atticus – all of Atticus’s actions this episode were to get one of August Corbin’s old files on something called the “9 sites of powers.” In case we didn’t realise the shadowy hidden agents were bad guys, the man also shoots and kills Atticus. Whatever they want Abbie for will definitely not be good.