Today's election day! Have you voted? Abbie Mills and Ichabod Crane want you to. Also I guess Katrina's pregnant with Moloch, but I think we can all agree how little we care about that. Let's mostly just vote.
Ugh, okay fine, we'll talk about the whole episode. But let's be clear that of all the things this season has done, giving Katrina a demon pregnancy (or another demon pregnancy, depending on what you make of all those crows smacking against the windows as Katrina birthed JeremyHenry) is maybe the worst. Hawley is extraneous, Irving abandoned, and Jenny rendered invisible, and this episode is STILL the worst.
It's a lazy device, lazily executed, tries way too late in the game to make Katrina a player in the main cast, and somehow creates very weird ripple-effect beats through the entire episode that slow down momentum and lose the stakes. This episode also reinforces the weird amnesia we're in where things start fluffy, get intense, their ostensible purpose is put on hold while Ichabod goes after Katrina, and then things get reset at the end on coffee dates and funeral beers.
So, the fun part: Abbie votes! Ichabod trumpets how he fought for freedom, and Abbie (who sounds like she's had a long week putting Ichabod in his place over stuff) cuts that short. After pointing out she would have been turned away "two times over" for being a woman of color, which seems like a serious softballing of the slavery situation Ichabod was knee-deep in, Ichabod is forced to admit that lack of universal suffrage was an issue, even if it clearly doesn't excuse low turnout now. Kids these days certainly get passionate enough to vote for "American Idolatry." Abbie tries to correct him. Ichabod, archly: "I know what it's called."
Ugh, this is even sadder given the episode they're in for.
Meanwhile, Katrina's forced engagement to Abraham Headless is already going south, since she assumes he's poisoned her and his defense sounds shaky even to him.
"Okay, yes, I colluded with your son and the Devil to snare you for my prize so you could be forcibly inducted into the netherworld and forced to be mine forever, where I have since ignored your every wish for independence as I try to murder the man you love and several innocent townspeople in the service of the Dark Lord, but I would never do whatever THIS is! How can you think that?"
But he really hasn't done this, as everyone sorts out once Henry shows up and drags her away as Abraham calls out for her (and she for him, because any port in a storm), and John Noble throws a couple of demonic grins in his wake just for funsies as he immobilizes Headless by – opening the windows with the power of his mind.
Oh, show. You can be so delightful when you want to be.
(Also, I know this has been sort of the least of the show's subplots, but Abraham is way lower on the phone tree than he was last season. Last season he had Moloch on speed dial! This has to sting.)
Katrina escapes and makes it out in a matter of seconds, which should be a thrilling moment of freedom but mostly makes me wonder if the board of the local reenactment society has been bombarded with Sheriff's-office calls for the last year.
Back at the voting booth, in a glimpse of an interesting subplot we've let go for several weeks, Reyes shows up with her friends, and Ichabod rather astutely points out that being excluded from Reyes' good graces must be difficult. But honestly, the more important voter:
Rudy Noble! Momentarily taken over last season by the demon, grumpy liaison for Reyes' introduction, and exposition conduit here. You keep recurring, Rudy Noble.
Once the colonial redhead has been ID'ed (we know it's not Caroline, don't we? Don't we), time to race to Katrina. I guess.
Okay, I'm sorry, I can't even muster any exclamation points. She's pregnant with a demon thingee and they 're pretending they don't know yet and it's just so sad to watch this happening to everyone. The only cool part of this whole business is Abbie arranging their escape:
One: Abbie Mills is the most decisive aspect of the Crane marriage. Two: Really? That's what you found for Katrina to wear, in everything the hospital lost and found had to offer. No comfy cotton plaids? None at all? That's interesting.
While Abbie single-handedly tracks the guys to their lair and figures out their plan (WHERE IS JENNY, oh my god, this is literally what she has trained her whole life to do and we know she is not busy), Ichabod and Katrina hang out in the archives, and they realize the Macguffin from last week is "birthing seed of Eastern origin" (uh huh), and that Katrina's pregnant with a demon we'll all pretend for another ten minutes isn't Moloch.
Ichabod, notably, gets instantly furious at the idea that it's Abraham's, slamming his way around the archives, which is both a semi-expected continuation of the tension of Katrina's many lies from the Halloween episode, and also a red flag for Katrina ditching him for her own sake, because sir. Seriously. The lady's trying to survive, okay? You do what you have to. You are somehow not doing much to help her, so she's making all the rules right now, and you can sit down about it.
By the way, just imagine, for the rest of this episode, Abraham on the floor of the cabin in the woods, unable to move until sundown, just lying there, being headless, the sad trombone of the demonic afterlife cadre. It will be more interesting than the demon fetus.
A physical representation of their marriage, and this subplot.
Katrina, for some reason, makes a plea to think the best of Henry. Abbie can't even believe what she's hearing: "He told us point blank he means to help Moloch raise hell on earth. How does anyone come back from that?"
When Ichabod steps in, it gets even better: "Do not let your feelings for him affect our mission." Okay, I am honestly not sure you have a mission right now, given how this season has gone, but that's some amazing bitchface.
Ichabod, who somehow keeps all his fingers after this move:
You know what, Name-Dropping Jesus? Save it.
Of course, Ichabod has never done anything but tell Abbie to set her feelings aside while he follows his feelings approximately one hundred percent of the time, so he suggests they call a vote about whether to approach Henry and ask him nicely to take the demon pregnancy out. (Wait, what? How is Henry their option to undo this? Katrina banished a soul last week, does she have no other powers? Are there no covens that could help? Why do they think Henry would help them at all, ever?) Abbie, in a way that had better get addressed later, concedes the vote: "I can do the math."
And so Ichabod sets up a one-man sting using Irving, which means Orlando Jones had to go to set and get all dressed up and sit around all day waiting for the lighting crew and the sound crew to set up, and then go in and do this scene like 6 times for coverage, for ten seconds of TV where he introduces one white dude who controls him to the surprise presence of the white dude he's helping.
That said, their scene itself is hilarious, because John Noble doesn't care what show he's on, he's going to do what he wants, and Tom Mison will match the tone of whoever he's in the shot with, so they end up having a bitch-off about King Lear and getting increasingly angry at one another until Henry finally points out that the love Ichabod keeps talking about only ever demonstrably extended to Ichabod, not to him. He was off making golem best friends with his one terrifying doll while Katrina was doing coven stuff!
I HATE YOU, DAD. I'LL HOLD YOUR HAND IN HELL.
Katrina, meanwhile, is asking Abbie to kill her rather than let her give birth to Moloch.
Welp. (That is the face of a woman who is glad someone else said it first so she wasn't the one to suggest it.)
Ichabod taunts Henry to eat his sins and see "the depth of my suffering" about his son, which is the most self-centered thing I have heard Ichabod say in about ten minutes. He grabs for Henry's wrist anyway, and ends up seeing Jeremy's suffering instead, which is maybe the angle he should have taken in the first place, as the child version of Jeremy runs screaming through the woods, searching desperately for a redemption arc.
So, since Henry has just walked out of that trap like he has the last six, it's back to the church to talk to Katrina some more. "Evidence of good in him is not proof that he will change," Ichabod points out, but Katrina brings up the two centuries in Purgatory she spent wondering about everything, and there's never any topping that.
Poor Katia Winter. Imagine her excitement when she got called to a set that was neither the carriage house nor the insect infested woods, and then realized she'd be sitting in a church with a pregnancy belly.
Good thing there's a Macguffin in the bad guy headquarters that can reverse the whole thing and Benjamin Franklin wrote a paper about it! Time to hit the dial-up. "It sounds like a swine being strangled," he says. Okay, that one's cosigned, Ichabod. (The Macguffin they discover is literally a prism that you shine sunlight through onto Katrina so the power of Aurora Borealis can heal her womb. They don't even care any more.)
Since they need an army to storm the place Abbie got into all by herself with no problems earlier, they bring the whole thing to Reyes and frame it as a doomsday cult who believe a bunch of hilariously obviously untrue things, but also have a pile of guns, and so should be arrested. It's a bold move, but the BS approach is admittedly dash cunning of them, for this-episode definitions of "dash cunning."
This is kinda my face about a lot of this right now.
During the Sheriff's Office bust, Abbie and Ichabod head for the safe, where Ichabod tries two esoteric combinations before Abbie can't take it any more: "They're a fricking evil cult. Try 666!" (It works. Ichabod is mortified on their behalf. Oh show, so close to being fun!)
Ichabod carefully lifts the slab out, peering at it intently. What Abbie's doing in the meantime:
(This whole room is so creepy, I can't even.)
Sheriff Reyes is impressed with Abbie! Abbie's thrilled, but makes sure Crane gets his due. Reyes, hilariously unable to even worry about that guy: "What did you say you did, again?"
To which Ichabod answers, in the episode's only moment of brilliant clarity: "I'm a criminal profiler with an emphasis on acts of historical imitation."
Such a great one. That cover story is a seriously renewable resource. Great work, you two.
Back at the church, Katia Winters screams for a million years as Ichabod very seriously shines a prism on her and Nicole Beharie wonders what the hell is happening to the season right now. Then the demon baby disappears and they think maybe she's dead.
And so did I! Okay? I hoped against hope that maybe this was a surprise write-out of Katrina that would make Henry really regret things just like Ichabod had promised, and make Ichabod super guilty about it all. I was almost so excited, and I feel like a terrible person for saying it, but she wasn't breathing and I was totally fine with it. I am sad she woke up.
As if proving my point, the earnest, palpably boring reunion of the married couple hasn't done the actually-interesting twosome any favors.
Plus, turns out Ichabod is still sympathetic to Henry and is looking forward to finding the good in him right around sweeps.
You know what's going to end up happening at this rate? Abbie and Jenny are going to start bringing Abraham to these fights just to get a deciding vote on whether or not to go after Henry. And I am actually super into that idea, frankly. Let Abbie befriend Abraham. Let her make out with the headless ripped guy. It makes no less sense than anything has this season, and it's better than Hawley, and I am just not sure where this season even thinks it's going any more, so they might as well. You can fist-bump without a head. Ichabod will be sorry! They'll allllll be sorry.
I want to believe, Sleepy Hollow, but you are making it hard.
This needle needs to move, but it isn't, because your story isn't. I know you can race to the finish. You just need to get started on that. Check with Jenny and Irving, I bet they have a plot handy. In the meantime, everybody vote!
Next episode: a succubus and a nightclub scene. This had better be good.