Sleepy Hollow “Mama”
Written by Damian Kindler
Directed by Wendey Stanzler
Sleepy Hollow raises the bar this season with a disturbingly great episode that features some frank depictions of mental illness and suicide, in addition to having demons and ghosts running around. Somehow the balancing act works just fine, and the added heart-string tugs of Abbie and Jenny’s mom being one of the ghosts leads to some great bonding and background information about the Mills sisters.
What we do know of Abbie and Jenny’s mom before this episode wasn’t much. We know she has issues and was eventually committed to an asylum (the responding officer has become the new Sheriff), and Abbie and Jenny were then dumped into the foster system, leading to their rift. We know she had died, I can’t remember if it was specifically stated that she killed herself, but I think so. And because of all the strange and spooky stuff that has happened on the series, it is understood if not specifically stated that she might have been less crazy than it seemed. That turns out to be true, and we get to see a whole lot more of Lori Mills, including interactions with her daughters as they grew up as well as the spectral version running around the asylum.
Patient bodies are piling up at Tarrytown, the psychiatric hospital that Frank Irving is currently staying at and Jenny Mills and Lori Mills are former patients of. Three bodies in three days, all of which are suicides. Abbie is specifically assigned by Sheriff Reyes because of her knowledge of dealing with weird events, as demonstrated by the doomsday cult she helped bring in. Her family connection to the place is also a plus, and it means Jenny will be along to help, as she’s familiar with the location.
Ichabod is MIA because he has a cold, which leads to some cute character moments and him mentioning that he fought at Saratoga while having dysentery. But he’s no match for being sneakily drugged by Nick Hawley, who tags along. A view of the video of the latest suicide shows the room wasn’t empty when he died, there was someone in the corner. Thanks to the magic of the cameras having a night view mode (Enhance! ENHANCE!) we see the ghost of Lori Mills chanting in the corner!