Sleepy Hollow “The Kindred”
Written by Mark Goffman and Albert Kim
Directed by Paul Edwards
Sleepy Hollow both returns to bringing us monsters while continuing the Apocalypse storyline and tying up some of the loose ends that still dangled after the season premiere. We get introductions to new characters and begin the plot lines that will take us through the rest of the year.
The most important thing that happens in this episode is the monster, which seems not to be the case, but it is. The monster, called The Kindred, is created from parts of dead soldiers from the Revolutionary War. It was originally build by Ben Franklin (Timothy Busfield reprises the role, though with clothes this time!) but never finished. Abbie and Ichabod manage to finish the monster using the head of the Headless Horseman. The Kindred is said to be the match of the Horsemen of Death, and is seen fighting the Headless Horseman to a standstill. But as there are two Horsemen of the Apocalypse running around, the Kindred is outmatched, though Abbie helps a bit during the fight. What is interesting is the Kindred also helps Abbie, and seems to know the plan of the heroes, and most importantly, does not die at the end of the episode. In fact, the Kindred escapes into the unknown, so there is a random unknown monster running around.
The Kindred is important for several reasons. His origin as the result of a Frankenstein creation of dead body parts parallels Sleepy Hollow being the creation of a bunch of goofy science fiction and fantasy tropes that somehow work together into making an awesome monster of crazy. The Kindred grins and hisses at his friends, and knows their plans, helping them achieving it will providing an equal to the might of the supernatural Horsemen. Thus, I’m predicting random Kindred appearances throughout the series when the plot dictates that the main characters have to overcome something that should kill them. It’s also important that this is the first monster who isn’t killed or defeated in some manner. He escapes on his own terms after accomplishing his goals. Perhaps the writers realized that killing off all their monsters of the week was bad, because you can’t use them again. It shows how the monsters have grown to be a bigger part of Sleepy Hollow and are becoming entrenched in the mythology of the series.
A new Sheriff is in town with Sheriff Leena Reyes, played by Sakina Jaffrey. She’s no-nonsense and has a history with Abbie and Jenny, in that she used to respond to domestic disturbance calls to Abbie’s mom’s house when the girls were little. That and Abbie being late to meetings and heavy in the kooky monster conspiracies running around town put her and the new Sheriff at odds. Things grow more tense when Sheriff Reyes locks up Jenny Mills, who she catches with a bag full of weapons (that she was retrieving for Abbie and Ichabod!)
Sheriff Reyes also is at odds with Captain Irving, who we finally see in jail (and with a black eye because he got dumped in genpop!) Thanks to him telling the truth on a lie detector test about his daughter being possessed, he gets thrown into a mental institution and Reyes orders all sorts of nasty tests. As Reyes is being set up to be a tougher antagonist, it will be interesting to see how she reacts when the supernatural starts hitting the fan. All she’s done so far is complain about headless bodies in the morgue. Though I think this character has potential, they went a bit too far in setting her up to be disliked, she seems awfully eager to put Captain Irving through a lot of torture. Hopefully she becomes less of a stock character once she gets some room to breathe, and I have trust in the writing team after the last season that this will be so. I will say it is interesting an Indian actress is playing a Latina character on a show that has been conscious of race, though maybe Sheriff Reyes will be revealed to be part-Indian.
There are some good fish out of water scenes with Ichabod, who is unfamiliar with the story of Frankenstein (prompting Abbie to remind herself to give him a new reading list) and goes on an epic rampage in a bank when a teller tries to get him to sign up for a credit card. If you ever want to hear an English guy drop Adam Smith quotes against a banker on prime time, then this scene is awesome. Abbie gets some actual character development when it’s revealed she has some PTSD from her time in Purgatory, which is only natural. She also learned not to abandon Jenny, to the point where Jenny specifically confesses to the guns to keep Abbie from getting into more trouble with the new Sheriff.
Probably the worst part is the contrived reasons for having Katrina stay at the Headless Horseman’s house. They set it up as her being a mole for them to spy, but really? Add to that some ridiculous scenes where Abraham (the human version of the Headless Horseman) makes the case that Ichabod doesn’t love her as much as he loves Abbie, and that he would be a much better husband. This gets emphasized with Katrina seeing memories of Ichabod and Abbie, making it look like a bit is sinking in. This whole plot is junk, and I don’t believe for a second Ichabod or Katrina would leave her in the captivity of a madman, even if it is for spying reasons. The writers barely knew what to do with Katrina last season, and now they just made her a trophy that lives with the villains before the inevitable episode where she dumps Ichabod for the Horseman only to rediscover her love a wee bit later. Throw her back in Purgatory or something.
The torture tests on Captain Irving at the psych ward end up not happening, because Irving gets a new lawyer. Except that new lawyer is Henry Parrish, and thanks to a trick pen and the most obvious sign of him being evil ever, he manages to trick Irving into signing a contract in his own blood. So now we know the problems Irving will be having this year! Hopefully his family will pop up soon.
Jenny looks to be locked up for the time being as well. But that’s how we were introduced to the character, so it’s not a radical departure and we know Jenny is tough enough to get through this. The only problem here is we won’t have Jenny busting in with double guns to save the day every episode. Unless she gets really good at escaping each week, which she might.
Overall, this episode was good because of the cool monster the Kindred, who sadly is only in the last bit of the episode. But despite his brief time, he manages to make a good impression. The heroes have a rogue Skeletor fighting on their side, and that’s always good! The weak spots are all the plot points being set up, but by next week all the stories will be in full force and it should be glorious.