When you’ve witnessed a headless entity wield a machine gun and you’ve battled a sleep demon in your scorpion-venom-tinged slumber, your bar for completely-and-utterly-messed-up might be set a bit higher than the average joe’s.
That’s gotta be the reason that Sleepy Hollow‘s Abbie and Ichabod barely pause when they encounter a fountain of evil, magical lava in this week’s episode, right?
Or maybe they’ve just spent their daily allowance of “What in the what-what?” on learning the horny demon’s name/agenda and finding out that Ichabod was an original member of the Tea Party. Regardless, let’s review what happened in “The Lesser Key of Solomon.”
JENNY, LOST AND FOUND | We pick right up where last week left off, with Abbie realizing that her institutionalized sister Jenny is on the lam. Abbie rushes back to the car, where Crane is waxing wistful about his long-lost wife, Katrina. They had “the kind of love that makes the mundane a marvel,” he muses – and I laugh out loud when it becomes clear he’s commiserating about love with the OnStar operator who helped him get into the car.
Back at the station, Crane begs Capt. Irving not to put out an APB for Jenny; he grants her a 12-hour lead before he begins a national search. (Side note: Irving has to have some kind of stake in this insane game, right? Otherwise, granting Mills’ wish is just foolish. And while this show is at times fluffy and often freewheeling, it is not foolish.) (Another side note: When was the last time Abbie and/or Ichabod slept? – and the Native American trance state doesn’t count.)
MISSED CONNECTIONS | In between bouts of working the phone, Abbie gives Crane an abbreviated story of her childhood: Her father left when she and Jenny were little girls, her mother had a nervous breakdown and had to be hospitalized soon after. “The state dumped us in foster care,” she says in clipped tones. After noting that Jenny has an extensive criminal record and a puzzling amount of international travel, Crane suggests visiting Jenny’s last foster family for any clues it might hold.
Abbie is severely unimpressed with Jenny’s final foster mom, particularly the way she has a new car in the driveway but her current kiddo is malnourished and sleeping on the floor. Abbie orders the woman to cough up what she knows about Jenny “or so help me, I will rain legal brimstone down on you so hard, it will make God jealous.” The whole time, the look on Ichabod’s face is saying, “Please Hammer, don’t hurt ‘em,” but Abbie’s threats work: The foster mom reveals that Jenny and Sheriff Corbin knew each other (!) and that she often escaped to a cabin nearby.
Crane and Mills break into the cabin (his “Imagine the delinquency we could perpetrate if we really put our minds to it” and her conspiratorial grin that follows are perfection). There, they find a gun-wielding Jenny; the pair realize that the home belonged to Corbin and that the late sheriff and Abbie’s sister were quite close. Once Ichabod rather awesomely gets the girls to drop the weapons they’re pointing at each other, the story shakes out: Corbin believed Jenny’s story about the demon in the woods, and he had her travel the world to “obtain rare objects.” One of these, a sextant (or tool for celestial navigation) turns out to contain the map to a very important piece of the Revelations-related puzzle: a legendary book of dark magic known as The Lesser Key of Solomon – and Ichabod has been in its presence before.
HARBORING SECRETS | Remember the Boston Tea Party? Turns out, Ichabod threw it – and the historical event was actually a distraction so that he (under George Washington’s orders) could retrieve a stone box containing a weapon that would help the British win the Revolutionary War. Though he managed to procure the box and send it to the general, Ichabod never saw what was inside.
Just then, some bad guys strafe the cabin with gunfire and steal the sextant, making it seem like Ichabod may be permanently in the dark as to the box’s contents. But one of the intruders is left behind as his cohorts take off, so Abbie & Co. tie him up and try to get him to talk.
Short version: He’s a Hessian – just like the Horseman – and he and his fellow acolytes of the horny demon have infiltrated all walks of life (“We’re your neighbors, friends”) in preparation for their leader’s coming. “We’re everywhere, growing stronger. Preparing for the inevitable,” he says. Guys, I figured it out: Demon, thy name is Joe Carroll! “Moloch shall rise,” he says in German, (eh, I was close) before somehow dislodging a cyanide capsule, swallowing it and dying.
GOIN’ TO THE CHAPEL | So the map is gone, and our gang is out of luck, right? Nope — Ichabod’s photographic memory FTW! He recreates the map, which sends the trio to the local Dutch Reform Church… where Moloch’s followers have used Tom Riddle’s diary Solomon’s book to invoke a fountain of lava that contains writhing, skeleton-like beasties. There’s a lot of shooting and fighting, then Abbie dumps the book in the roiling mess of evil, Jenny kills a guy and it all wraps rather neatly.
Back at the station, Abbie tries to right many of the wrongs she’s done her sister – starting by offering to be her conservator, which means she may be able to get Jenny sprung from the looney bin a few months earlier than planned. “I see who you really are, and I’m proud of you,” Abbie says. I’ve gotta say, the casting on this show so far has been spot-on; Nicole Beharie and Lyndie Greenwood are very believable as siblings with some tough feelings between them. And I’m more than a little entertained by what Jenny brings to bear on the Abbie-Ichabod relationship. (That car scene with the three of them was great.)
Crane wraps the episode with the news that Moloch is a demon referenced in Milton’s Paradise Lost – and the fact that they now know old hornball’s name is a big deal.
Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments!Follow @kimroots