Sleepy Hollow Recap: Appetite for Transgression

Sleepy Hollow Season 1 RecapYou’d be hard pressed to find someone in the TV-loving world who couldn’t find something to like about this week’s Sleepy Hollow. The very strong episode has baseball, Fringe‘s John Noble and the Hug Heard ‘Round the World – aside from a new pair of pants for ol’ Ichabod, what more could you want?

During the hour, we also witness Mr. and Mrs. Crane’s first meeting, and we are enlightened on the circumstances that made Ichabod decide to fight against the British. But seriously, all I can think about are those last few minutes. Because they’re AWESOME. Let’s review what happened in “The Sin Eater.”

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PLAY BALL! | In a nod to the World Series that pre-empted Hollow for a few weeks, we find Abbie and Ichabod taking in a local baseball game at the beginning of the episode. He looks mildly baffled as she lights into the umpire, so she explains America’s pastime. She loves the sport for three reasons: its traditions (“no matter how crazy the world gets, it makes you feel safe, like everything’s OK”), its teamwork (“the players have to have faith in each other and watch each other’s backs”) and its failure to discriminate (“and that’s the American dream.”). Ichabod does a little misguided heckling of his own before the game wraps and Abbie offers him a ride home. He declines, choosing instead to take a walk that brings him to Katrina’s grave. A second too late, he realizes he’s being watched. Then a tranquilizer dart hits him, and as men approach him with a bag to put over his head, everything goes dark.

CREEPY DREAMS ARE MADE OF THESE | An oblivious Abbie is driving along to Billie Holiday’s “God Bless the Child” when she kinda falls asleep and is transported to a scary old house with lots of candles. A baby is crying somewhere, but all Ab finds is the most terrifying rag doll ever constructed… and then the Headless Horseman is upon her. A voice calls her into another room, where it appears that she’s stumbled into Miss Robichaux’s Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies. But then the veiled, chanting women around the Ouija board vanish and only Katrina is left.

Ichabod’s wife introduces herself to Abbie and, in short time, says that Lt. Mills has to hustle and find someone called a sin eater because Ichabod’s blood link to the Horseman is going to mean his death before the next sundown. (I know it sounds rushed there, but it’s not much slower-paced in the show. When this show decides to go gonzo, you’ve gotta just fly with it or get left in the supernatural dust.)

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DON’T FEAR THE EATER | Good thing that Jenny, for whom Capt. Irving helps Abbie procure a 24-hour furlough from the loony bin, tracked a sin eater for some time when she was Sheriff Corbin’s personal Carmen Sandiego. The Mills sisters realize that their man, Henry Parrish, spent a long time sanctifying death-row inmates before basically falling off the face of the planet two years back settling in Hartford, Conn.

Abbie puts the hard press on Henry, who just wants to be left alone after a lifetime of ridding people of their ugliest transgressions. (Side note: I didn’t realize how much I missed Noble until I had him on my screen again. Very psyched that he’ll be back a few more times this season.) But when Abbie bumps into him, her connection to Ichabod is so strong that his location pops right into Parrish’s mind: Crane is being held in the tunnels under Sleepy Hollow, behind a door marked with the square and compass that make up the Freemasons’ symbol.

SINS ALL AROUND | Indeed, while the Mills sisters have been looking for Henry, Ichabod has been proving that he is, indeed, himself to a bunch of his fellow Freemasons. The men who kidnapped Crane want to know the first time he heard the phrase ordo ab chao – Latin for “Order from chaos.”

Long story short, Ichabod was ordered to kill a freed slave accused of treason, but instead chose to let the man go free. The man, Arthur, gratefully tells Ichabod to use the Latin phrase as a password with Katrina, who (along with Commander George Washington) will help him find his new, British Army-deserting path.

But before Arthur can get far, another Redcoat shoots him dead. Crane charges the shooter; as they fight, it’s clear that the man is a blue-headed demon. Based on this and another (Grimm-esque) scene earlier, it appears as though the British Army was riddled with otherworldly nasties. A badly injured Ichabod manages to shed his uniform coat and stumble to Katrina, whom he’s just met but whom he feels like he’s known forever. He whispers “Ordo ab chao” then collapses in the doorway.

VIDEO | Sleepy Hollow Stars, EP Parse Ichabod’s Special Name for Abbie

A MAN’S GOTTA DO… | Having verified his identity, the Masons welcome Ichabod… and then tell him he’s gotta kill himself in order to end the Horseman’s reign of terror. It’s at this point that the Mills sisters bust in and Abbie is all, “Um, HELL NO.” But Ichabod nobly argues that it’s for the greater good, so he must do it – and that thre’s no time for her to bring him to Henry. She puts up a fight until he raises his voice slightly, saying, “Abbie, this is the only way.” It’s the first time he’s called her by her first name, and it’s not lost on either of them.

And here begins the scene which could be subtitled “This recapper can’t believe the following exchange is affecting her so much because the series is clearly not going to off one of its very pretty leads in the sixth episode of the first season, so why is there a giant lump in her throat?” I don’t think I’m getting soft in my advanced years; I just think that Nicole Beharie and Tom Mison softly, gently kill it as they sit across the table from each other and prepare for Crane’s death.

Let’s just run down the many ways this scene wrecked me. How about when they both start to cry as he notes he is “most grateful” for having known her? Or when they frantically clasp hands when he admits that he’s terrified by what he has to do? Or when he asks her to leave and she refuses, so he merely replies, “I’m so sorry” as he quaffs the poison? Someone needs to get Henry to sanctify me, because I’m dying over here.

EAT UP | Speaking of the sin eater, he suddenly appears and seems much more jazzed to be part of the proceedings. By bleeding Ichabod’s palm, he helps Crane summon the spirit of Arthur, who’s got no beef with the fact that Ichabod basically got him killed. It was all part of the journey, Arthur says without malice, noting that Ichabod’s regret over the act is what the Horseman is “feeding on.” (Side note: Wait, I thought the Horseman was all about the sin in Ichabod’s soul. Metaphorical po-tay-to, metaphorical po-tah-to?) Anyway, Henry does his thing – which involves dipping a piece of bread in Ichabod’s blood like he’s at the Williams-Sonoma olive oil tasting station – and Ichabod and his Hessian nemesis are decoupled.

Crane stands and announces “He’s gone,” which sends Abbie into his arms. Both of them seem so happy and relieved; she sasses him and he uses the word “admonition,” and nothing is wrong in my world for a few minutes. That is, until the Horseman rises and makes his way to Ichabod’s empty grave…

Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Is my prone-to-‘ship heart making too much out of Ichabod and Abbie’s interactions during the hour? Did you love Capt. Irving’s brief yet funny appearance? Sound off in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Was pretty awesome. Maybe John Noble can be a regular.

  2. iMember says:

    Two weeks without an episode, and then this fabulous episode comes!! I’ve now realized just how severe the pain will be once this season is over and we’ll have to wait till fall of next year to see what happens next!

  3. Mandy says:

    I ship Ichatrina, even if they are married, they are not the easy ship. Shipping Ichabbie is too much easy, I hate when writers put a ship in the viewers throat, is not fun at all.

    I love Katrina a lot.

    • Molly says:

      I don’t really ship anyone. This is one of the shows I watch because I enjoy the mythology, not because of the romance. There are, of course, shows that are both for me (like Buffy or the X Files) but not this one.

      • Jane says:

        Thank you. Why can’t we just watch shows without trying to put people together? I watch this and other shows for the story not to try and force people together and while are at it can we please put a stop to the stupid practice of combining names?

        • Kasia says:

          I’ve started watching the show for the story. I was really interested in the mytology and don’t get me wrong I still am but somewhere along the way I unintentionally have started to ship Ichabod and Abbie a little bit. It doesn’t mean though that all shippers see only the couple they’re interested in and are blind to the main story.

    • Tony says:

      Is there really any way for this show to end without Ichabod and Katrina reunited? Either by his death to save humanity or by some how him freeing her from where she’s being held. If he can be brought back from the grave I can see her being saved from purgatory.

      • hml says:

        I’d like to see Ichabod and Katrina end up together too, especially after last night’s episode.

      • ChellemaBelle says:

        Completely reminds me of Lost’s Penny & Desmond. Still thinking of the long-awaited phone call brings a massive lump to my throat. (Ok, and tears gushing like the baby I am.)

    • Laura says:

      I don’t know what’s this obsession is about Ichabod being with Abbie. I feel fans are taking this too far. I for one have not accepted Abbie as of yet. She comes across a bit of a snob and rolling her eyes at Ichabod sometimes. People need to give Katrina a chance. Don’t know what the hatred towards her is, but that is Ichabod’s wife. They really need to quit shipping Ichabod and Abbie. I do hope they explore more of Katrina and her relationship with Ichabod in upcoming episodes. If the writers keep giving fans more shipping on Ichabod and abbie than this show is done.

      • meem says:

        Have you never watched television and followed its social media before? This is what people DO–going back 20 years to the X-Files, at least. And its their right. You have the right to not pay any attention to it. I didn’t “ship” Mulder & Scully, and I don’t “ship” Ichabod and Abbie, but I certainly understand why people do.

      • Sam says:

        Abbie a snob? WTF?!?!

      • Melissa says:

        KATRINA’S DEAD LALALALALALA I love going back to read this old ignorant comments. Katrina was ALWAYS a plot device; deal with it.

    • meem says:

      Yes, I mean, how dare the writers make their male and female leads–in their show about a man and woman fighting off the apocalypse together–actually like each other, respect each other, and show a little bit of affection toward each other! The nerve! SMH

  4. meem says:

    Totally agree about the pre-suicide scene. Wow, that was incredible, even though we KNEW he wouldn’t die. Crazy good acting.

    • gdv says:

      I’m glad I was not the only one so affected by that scene. I was fighting back tears, even though I knew there was no way he’d actually die. Amazing acting. Tom Mison deserves some recognition (please, Golden Globes!!).

      Speaking of Mison’s charm, my heart totally melted when Ichabod bowed to Abbie after the baseball game. Then, when they hugged at the end of the episode, the way he was looking at her made me think he was going to kiss her for a second! Ahhhh! So amazing.

      This felt like part 1 of a 2-part finale; but it’s only episode 6! I have never been this invested in a new show this quickly, except maybe Lost. Kudos to the writers and actors for doing such an awesome job so far. I’m a huge, huge fan.

      • meem says:

        I haven’t been this invested since The X-Files. In other words, it’s been a looooong time. (Ichabod & Abbie are Mulder & Scully 2.0. Discuss.)

  5. Annie says:

    This show just keeps getting better and better! So, any thoughts on the deal with Death finding Crane’s grave??

  6. selina says:

    Mison is just incredible. I need to sit down in a quiet room and think about that episode. All I know is that I dont want Mison to ever leave our screens

  7. caro says:

    If Tom Mison doesn’t become a film star after this series I’ll eat my hat

  8. Alichat says:

    That suicide scene was just so expertly done. And my favorite line of the episode…”I don’t know what the hell that means. Just say yes.” LOL!!

  9. judy says:

    The show is brilliant but a lot of that is to do with the chemistry between Tom Mison and Nicole. Mison in particular brings so much to the role. He must be thrilled with the part. He’s the perfect romantic hero.

  10. Emma says:

    Loved the episode tonight. My new TV addiction! Anybody know the actor who played the mason interviewing Crane? I know him from somewhere and it is driving me crazy!

  11. For a brief moment my heart was like oh no he is a goner but my head was all the wiser (thank goodness)! Glad to have Sleepy Hollow back as part of my weekly television viewing rotation!

  12. meem says:

    I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but Crane actually called her “Abbie” at the end of the pilot. And I’m sure they all wish he hadn’t!

  13. sarah says:

    Yep, I thought I could remember a couple of times he’d called her Abbie. Can’t remember exactly when, though – guess I’ll have to go rewatch the eps!

    • Alice says:

      It’s always been Miss Mills or Lieutenant . Jenny had been called Miss Jenny, according to the custom that the oldest sister is called by the last name and all the younger sisters are called by their first names. But they very deliberately never had him call her Abbie.

      • Alichat says:

        meem and Sarah are correct. In the pilot, as they are walking down the hall to talk to Officer Brooks, Ichabod is telling Abbie about what he’s figured out concerning Revelations and them being the two witnesses brought together for 7 years, and he says “You said, after the woods you lost your way, but perhaps you were called to something Abbie.” I believe that’s the only time prior to last night’s ep that he’s called her Abbie. I remember at the time thinking it odd that he called her Abbie and not Miss Mills or Lieutenant since he’d only recently woke up and would still be addressing people as he would have in the 1700s.

        • Alice says:

          oops! I totally missed that! Just saw the producer tweet about it. According to the writers, during the pilot “Abbie wasn’t listening. #women.”

          • Alichat says:

            Really?? That was the producer’s reply to the continuity error?? Sheesh! LOL!

          • meem says:

            That’s hysterical. They are receptive, though. In the pilot they incorrectly called it the Book of Revelations (plural). Since then, it’s been corrected to Book of Revelation.

  14. Carter says:

    I know this is gonna sound very low on the totem pole of greatness that is this show but I kinda missed the longer intro tonight. I like intros I guess.

  15. JeffDJ says:

    Really enjoyed the episode. Loved seeing John Noble on my TV again! And are we to believe James Frain isn’t a bad guy? The dude is always a villain, isn’t he?

    • TVPeong says:

      Hahahaha I thought the same thing. Doesn’t he always play a villain?

      • Alice says:

        He once played the nice guy in this Natalie Portman movie, Where the Heart Is. It was the first role I saw him in. So now every time I see how good he is at being evil I kinda feel upset that he got the girl in the end of that movie. Like…maybe Forney wasn’t really a nice guy after all!

    • Jules says:

      I thought the same thing. James Frain and Mark Pellegrino – these two are always the villains wherever they turn up. Unitl proven that they are, I’m always wary of them being “good guys”.

    • Julie says:

      He was also a nice guy on a season of ’24.’

  16. George says:

    I like this show but for the love of everything can soneone get this man some modern clothes!! It drives me nuts. Walk him into an express or a gap. There has to be a mall in that tiny town. Other than that the show is great it just drives me nuts that so many episodes in he’s still wearing clothes he was buried in. That stuff has to stink.

    • iMember says:


      Also, they’ve shown him washing it before.

      • Katherine215 says:

        Washing or not, those clothes are still 200 years old. They can’t possibly last forever. I wouldn’t mind a nice sweater and some jeans on Tom Mison. They cannot have Ichabod shave or cut his hair though.

        • gdv says:

          I hope he keeps his peacoat, or they get a modern-day one that looks similar to the one he wears now. But it would also be funny if Ichabod made a comment like he “wanted to keep his dignity” or something, and hence refused to dress in modern clothes. :)

          • meem says:

            I think this is what is going to happen. Recent interviews on set show Mison still wearing the same outfit, yet he says that the clothing this will be addressed soon. My prediction? Tries it and rejects it. They have to be near to filming the final episode, and he hasn’t changed yet.

        • meem says:

          Well, Ichabod is 200+ years old, too, and he didn’t age. Follows that the fabrics on his body didn’t age, either.

    • meem says:

      No no no no!!!! Crane must keep his period clothes. At the very LEAST he must keep the wool coat and boots. I don’t care if poor Tom Mison melts away wearing wool in the North Carolina heat and humidity, Ichabod Crane needs his coat!

  17. Nusaiba says:

    I’m so glad someone recaps this show on tvline. I thought it was a spectacular episode and for leading into the last 8 which are supposed to be INTENSE, I thought it did a great job.

  18. TVPeong says:

    Nicole Beharie is really bringing her A-game. The silent tears, all the emotion.

  19. Doug says:

    That was a good episode, John Noble is always able to bring the awkward weirdness when needed. The whole ‘drinking poison’ thing was a bit weak though, fake, unbelievable tension that was just hand-waved away and not addressed. Was it super-magical guilt-poison, that only works on people with a guilty conscience? Must have been since the Sin Eater seems to have not only broken the bonds, but countered the poison as well. I rewound a couple of times to see if I missed something, but remained unsatisfied. Oh well.

    • meem says:

      Parrish said that he could remove the poison and possibly also the sin from Crane’s body. He was sure about the poison, unsure about the sin, but both were cleansed.

  20. RyG says:

    what else has the actor who played Arthur Bernard [the black guy in the 1800s] been in?

  21. Trenton says:

    Glabor was in this episode!!!!!!!

  22. Elliot says:

    Awesome! I wept all through the poison scene, they nailed it. And both Abbie’s profession (“I though I’d finally found someone”) and his “after all these centuries, to find my way to you”..they both clearly feel they are meant to be together and not only as Witnesses. I love how the writers have just made that OK, even though we have the sticky wicket of the somehow-to-be-ex Mrs. Crane. Perhaps she will end up with Irving?

    Nicole Beharie is riveting to watch, whether she’s ordering around her boss to save crane, or glaring down the masons in the hallway, or simply holding Crane’s hand.

    Mison was wonderful.
    And for pity’s sakes, guys, get over him wearing period clothes. He rocks them, it’s part of the neo-steampunk thing Orci and Kurtzman have going on with the look of the show, it’s a FANTASY.

    *snif* it was nice to see John Noble again, too.

  23. Jennifer says:

    I love this show to pieces but I’m scared for his inevitable “make over”. If they make him look like a douchey hippster so help me… ): (

  24. Marc says:

    Dear Lawd, I confess that I swooned a few times last night, first when he finally called her Abbie, when he held her hand, when she declared that she wasn’t walking away, when they hugged. Funny thing though is that I still adore Ichbod and Katrina and is charmed by their first meeting and relationship. I can respect what Crane and Katrina had and still have while enjoying and hoping for something deeper to eventually happen between Crane and Abbie; and if Crane and Abbie remain the closest of friends for the entire series, I still will be happy.

    Seeing John Noble, all I can think about is adorable Walter and it endeared me to the show even more. This is good, very good.

    • Alice says:

      I agree! I loved seeing more of Katrina. It’s hard to become invested in her well being without knowing her- so I’m glad we see her background. I loved the scene where she barged in and demanded to take care of Arthur. Although- how is it that after all that Ichabod never knew she was a witch? AND I loved all the Ichabod/Abbie scenes. Since we’ve seen more of them I’m already totally invested in wanting them to be happy. I find the fact that the writers are choosing to let the characters openly acknowledge how important their friendship is rather than hiding it for 4 seasons to be very refreshing. Like “Yes, he’s important to me.” BAM. Deal with it, moving on.

  25. Dan says:

    I’m really enjoying Crane’s wardrobe I wish I could wear clothes like those and look as good.

  26. sarah says:

    love john cho wish he was in it more, then the show would be perfect

  27. Sptaz99 says:

    John Noble is so awesome, he is a ridiculously talented actor.

  28. kimberly says:

    I’d be happy if Ichabod and Abbie remained close friends, no shipping necessary. The love they feel as friends is perfect! I actually teared up during Ichabod’s near death scene, knowing full well he was going to live. Their exchange was so sad! To top everything off, there was John Noble. I’m loving this show!

  29. Sheila says:

    I love, love, love this show! I’m into all the characters and can’t wait to see how this all plays out. Ichabod…Abbie…Katrina…all the chemistry and passion are beautifully and tastefully expressed with the right amount of angst, humor, and affection. The supporting characters are pretty powerful in their own right as well. And John Noble!!! Ichabod’s ‘death scene’ was perfect! I cried even though I knew he was the lead character and not likely to die in the first season.

  30. AK says:

    Thank you for the recapping the heart breaking moments of Ichabod and Abbie preparing for his death. Watching it I almost forgot that the main character should survive for show to go on. I found the scene more powerful than sin eater appearance. And the embrace and Ichabod hugging Abbie as she was a little girl..My husband has called Leftenant Mills tough little girl. I enjoy incredible Crane-Leftenant magic but expect to get to know Katrina Crane better in coming episodes. Ichabod loyalty and love (which make “mundane a marble”) give all of us married women hope that our husbands care and loyal to us even when we are in purgatory.. At least for a while..Ichabod is a married man until some kind of clarification of Katrina’s fate. I don’t believe that Katrina can be and would be ever brought to real world from the place she is in now. But she has a wealth of the past I would like to know about.