Mr. Sandman / bring me a dream / make it an episode of Sleepy Hollow that I’d like to see…
Between travel schedules, ‘jobs’, and familial commitments, lovers of Sleepy Hollow Tanya and Mooch don’t always get the chance to watch an episode within the week after its initial broadcast. Fortunately, at least one of the pair does. Even more fortunately, the other of the pair is more than willing to guess wildly about what actually happened.
The podcast may still occur, one of these days.
T: WAH my Gmail looks scarifying.
M: … you put on a Halloween skin?
T: It’s on the genric weather one – but it went creepy. Stormy creepy. There must be a weather warning in [town where Tanya’s Gmail is set]. ANY WAY – throw some predictions out. Or hopes. Or whatever.
M: I predict you’re going to get flattened by a tornado whose warning you ignored.
T: Clearly I was excited by SOMETHING in this episode as I immediately texted you.1
M: Very true. You never do that. Normally you are a rock on a stormy sea.
T: I keep my feels very quiet and subdued, so as not to HEY.
M: Before I even hazard a guess though – you said you had more thinks about this episode than feels. Has that shifted? Are you now all with the feels?
T: Feels and thinks can be very interconnected. I am feeling some things; I am also thinking. And thinking some things that have associated feels.
M: This is great, we don’t even need to discuss the episode.
T: YAY I’m *superb* at this!
M: You are! You deserve some pie.
T: Also, this episode totally made me gloat to my mom, who was playing Draw Something during the entire episode. Her response to my gloating? “What is this thing your father drew? It has too much hair.” (answer: kanye. so yes, it had too much hair)
M: Okay, so… Let me think.
T: (I also want you to know that i am a bum and just ordered hot chocolate from room service as dinner.)
M: The first three episodes of this season have been like the last third of last season in terms of general interest, but like that dreadful stretch early on in terms of the writers apparently having dropped a month’s worth of scripts on the ground, lost several pages, and shuffled them up. Metaphors!
T: Well don’t expect this episode to be miraculous in that regard.
M: I expect nothing! The preview makes me think this is a more monster-of-the-week episode, where this Pied Piper is a weapon being used by… I will guess Moloch, not Henry. And the episode thus leaves most of the series continuity by the wayside EXCEPT Ichabod totally knows something about this specific demon/undead assassin whatever SO…
M: It was connected to something the British were trying to do to win the war and my first thought was Benedict Arnold for some reason but they did that last week so that’s about all I’ve got at the moment.
T: Nope, not Benedict Arnold.
M: See, I can’t remember a single instance where a kidnapping was important in the revolution. Like, actual kids.
T: uh-HUH. Well.
M: Guide me! Lead me along, like the pied piper of yore!
T: Turns out A) there was a legion of child fifers that got on the wrong side of evil or B) this is a family curse that continues to play out in modernity or C) Henry explains it but I was totally creeped out by his smile and missed half the explanation.
M: Fifers! I totally forgot about that. Man, that would be a good connection – not to mention upping the spooky quotient for the show Children-of-the-Corn style.
T: (Ordering hot chocolate for dinner: BEST decision)
M: But I’m thinking B. Because this show wants to be a soap opera.
T: DAMN YOU. Yes.
M: Ha! The fifers were a great misdirect though.
T: Thank you ::bows:: Of course it’s a family curse! And of course Ichabod knows the family in question, and of COURSE he has pithy mean things to say about the forefather in question. Aside: besides Evil Abraham, *did* Ichabod have any friends? He’s very judgey.
M: I’m guessing this family has never been mentioned previous to now?
T: Lancaster. I don’t think so? But… and here’s the surprise! … there’s a connection to Abbie and Jenny.
M: Wait, let me dig this out of my brain… the Mills’ ancestor was midwife to Henry’s birth, right?
T: Yes, but you’re thinking too hard.2
M: I just wanted to properly situate my ignorance.
T: Okay: Abbie and Jenny. We know Reyes had their mom committed, but there were processes for the kids to become a ward of the state, etc, right?
M: The Lancasters took them in?
T: Close. But no. And, actually there might be a reason for that…
M: Reason for that not happening?
T: Yeah. Unclear, but a possibility. So: Lancasters didn’t take them in… but… Lady Lancaster had a career and it was …
M: Family court judge? Social worker? School bus driver?
T: DING DING on the second one. So, by dint of this relationship, we’re supposed to know that LL is loving and caring and looks out for the kids under her charge. She said some things that turned Abbie’s life around, and Abbie quotes them right back at her when her daughter disappears
M: (pause) Fair enough. I buy it. (I’m wandering back and forth from the computer because I’m suddenly starving and need to make a sandwich or something.)
T: Oh okay. I need to make more hot chocolate. And eat pulled pork. Mmm.
M: …you ordered a hot fudge sundae and a pulled pork sandwich?
T: No, I ordered hot chocolate and I had leftover pulled pork from my jaunt to Taylor, TX for bbq. BUT I digress. Why do we always end up back to food? Tie-in: there is a distinct lack of eating in Sleepy Hollow. No wonder Ichabod wears skinny jeans.
M: Oh, well done.
T: I also went on a pie jaunt today…
M: SLEEPY HOLLOW.
T: Okay. so we have a family curse, inexplicably tied to a dude with a flute, and a missing little girl. And Abbie knows the mom, and Ichabod knows the revolutionary dude-father.
M: Little girl missing today and now.
M: So revolutionary dude-father is the mom’s great great something great grandfather.3
T: The episode is pitched as a missing kid episode – but this is Sleepy Hollow, so OF COURSE it isn’t that simple. Next question: how much police procedure is spouted?
M: Hmmm… was the portly officer with the buzz cut involved?
M: Because he’s very good at not saying anything police-y at all, despite wearing a uniform and standing in a police station. Like, seriously, I love him, whatever his name is, but he could just as easily be a desk manager at a septic tank service company.
T: This was clearly an ‘all you non-principals, take a vacation’ episode. ‘And some of you principals, too.’
M: Oh? No Henry at all?
T: Henry was there. And Irving, briefly. But the episode really hinged on asking “What is a good mother? When your choices suck, what does a mother do?” I really do think this is the What Happened to Mrs Mills season.
M: Okay, my guess: a ton of police procedural talk – Amber Alerts, grid searches, K9 units, behavioral profiles…
T: Welllll…. Ichabod did get an alert on his phone. And…. that was kind of it.
M: Oh, I was wrong.
T: It happens. So: mother totally believes in the curse. why?
M: DO NOT tell me it’s because she had a sister who got taken.
T: SHE DID!
M: No! Oh for…
M: And so we get parallels upon parallels all episode long.
T: Better – she adopts FOUR BOYS because the curse strikes girls on their 10th birthday. (Which is maybe why she didn’t adopt the Mills?)
M: One of the boys coughs a lot, one of them is always hungry… I see where this is going.4
T: And then, as happens, she gets pregnant ANYWAY and bam: baby girl.
M: And ten years later bam baby girl gone.
M: Oy. Did she not adopt the Mills because she feared bringing girls into the house, or is it just never discussed?
T: It’s never discussed; that’s my conjecture. Sooo it took Ichabod and Abbie a STUPID long time to look up whether the curse had actually struck before. And of course it’s been striking since Daniel Lancaster hired the pied piper to kill off a regiment of British soldiers who were harrasing his daughters.
M: Wait, does Today Mom have the same family name as Back Then Grandad?
T: I don’t think so? I wondered about that too. She just has a ton of his artifacts.
M: Okay, that mildly excuses it. Otherwise it would be ‘Huh, I once knew a man with that name and his family… WAIT A MINUTE!’ And the episode would just be 30 minutes of chase scenes after that. And commercials. Half of which would be for Sleepy Hollow itself.
T: So the pied piper slays the regiment with his crazy musical abilities, and then daddy-o Lancaster stabs him so there aren’t any witnesses. Regeneration and curse is born. Instead of commercials and chase scenes, Ichabod has to talk legend for a good while, slam Lancaster’s family, find the pied piper’s flute and accidentally hypnotize Abbie, and then stumble on…
M: Wait, with his musical abilities? Like, he actually uses music to kill them, not just distract them?
T: Yes; the flute has hypnotic abilities.
M: …and he sends them over a cliff?
T: The music lures them, the British regiment he stabbed, the girls… he keeps. He weakens them and then he a) makes a dress of their skin, b) scalps them and weaves their hair into his own
M: Well, were they great big fat girls?
T: c) harvests their bones for his next flute
T: d) turns them into DAMMIT
M: There was a creepy shot of Ichabod holding a bone thing in the previews!
T: I had a whole skincare product line set up, boo. So he turns their tibias or femurs or something appropriately boney into his next flute – one girl each generation.
M: Wait, go back – were you going to say d) he turns them into skin care products which are sold in high end boutiques SOMETIMES TO THEIR OWN MOTHERS?
T: YES. Dammit. IT WAS BRILLIANT. AND HIDEOUS. And you guessed too fast! Bah.
M: You… clearly have low blood sugar. The hunger is warping your otherwise sweet mind.
T: There might have been a toe-necklace option, too…
T: ANYWAY – guest star. Who comes back?
M: Lessee… Abbie gets hypnotized and… they need to get ahold of someone who can help Abbie…
T: Off they go to save the girl, following hypnotized Abbie, and they stumble over…
M: Oh… hmm. Not John Cho that would make NO SENSE in this episode. Stumble over as in dead body?
T: They stumble over a live but injured body.
M: Who do I know who got injured this season… Irving escaped the nuthouse and cut his thumbs on the fence?
T: Nope. He’s still in Tarrytown.
M: Terrytown, please.
M: You watch your mouth. Okay… woods… injured person… a Hessian? The piano teacher is dead…
T: Who hangs out in the woods already and possibly might be wanting a bone flute…
M: Aside from your coworker? Wait, wait, I’m asking the wrong question – have we seen this person before?
M: Okay, and based on your description I’m thinking I’ve forgotten several episodes. Erm, the native american chief from episode 3?
T: Well you didn’t ask WHY this person might want a bone flute.
As is usually the case on my Wendesday evenings I must inquire – why would this person want a bone flute?
T: They might be going for a lot of $$ on the black market. or possibly a collector has hired someone to find it?
M: The Pantene Privateer!
T: YES. Hawly Holly Holi is back! AND he has a new name for Ichabod GUESSITGUESSIT.
M: Beyond Shakespeare.5 Einstein would be too clunky. So…
T: And not really old enough. Or time period-y enough.
T: Nope. Think literature. He’s keeping it in the English lit wheelhouse. And, um, think novels. Because Ichabod uses a lot of words.
M: Yeah, I was going there, but this guy seems like he wouldn’t necessarily be period-perfect. Jane Eyre.
T: Oh CLOSE.
M: Jane Austen?
T: YES but I need a TITLE.6
M: Pride and Prejudice?!
M: That’s… oh, that’s actually perfect.
T: …and Ichabod is all like “WHAT NO ME UH fine declaim declaim declaim”
M: But it’s so perfect I found it stupid on first thought. Wait… so this hypnotizing… it kind of turns people into zombies, no? The writers may actually have done an episode-long joke right there.
T: AHAHAHAHA ::cough:: I hated that book. There were no ninjas though; just Privateer Hair.
M: I thought the concept was brilliant and I had no interest in reading it.
T: I read it aloud with a southern accent and that made it okay. But still bad. But at least amusing to me.
M: Were you alone when you were doing this?
T: ANYway. Privateer hair is like “I want the flute, and some dude in a costume leaped out and attacked me and the girl is in there oh you have a bit of time to rescue her BEFORE SHE BECOMES A FLUTE” “Oh yeah I don’t believe in the curse” “Oh yeah she’ll be a bone flute soon” “But I don’t believe in the curse”.
M: You’re saying you were unconvinced by his protestations.
T: It sounded like the writers had forgotten what they had just written.
M: Surely that couldn’t be the case here! Anyway, blah blah girl gets saved, Abbie demurely pouts her thanks to all involved, and… did the privateer have something that could destroy the piper once and for all?
T: Well: they get the girl home.
M: Piper nowhere to be seen.
T: …and then Ichabod realizes… wait a second! Mum Lancaster did not look happy!
M: Which means everything’s totally fine. Aww snap – this is going somewhere marginally interesting!
T: To The Archives! This is when they finally do their research.7 Turns out that, back in like the 1930s, one girl was saved by the townspeople. As in, recovered and not killed… and then the rest of the children of the house sickened and died.
M: Ah! So Mom KNOWS the piper will come back to exact vengeance on her brood. Does this all end with her stately home being esploded?
T: Nope. Though Ichabod does steal a sword.
M: Is rock music involved? Like how they defeated Noriega?
T: Nope again. So: Ma Lancaster. What does she do?
M: Well, she should offer to sacrifice herself.
T: Remember: she’s loving. And a social worker. She’s all about the greater good. And she can’t sacrifice herself – it has to be a 10 yr old girl, or all the kids of the family get it.
M: New plan: she offers to have another kid, but one she doesn’t like much, and in ten years the piper can totes grab that one.
T: … No.
M: C’mon, that’s brilliant!
T: This episode is subtitled “Moms Are Bad At Choices”
M: She’s about to take her blood daughter back, even though it means dooming the (presumably teenage) boys. terrible choice. But with some good outcomes – ‘Welcome back sweetie, have some cookies, I guess we’ll be able to make that craft room now with all this extra space.’
T: The opposite! She takes the girl BACK into the woods. Hellooooo psychiatry bill.
T: …you’re speechless with the horror.
M: No, I was getting ice cream, because apparently I don’t eat enough calories. Oo, I can make my own breakfast burrito tomorrow! I have all the parts!
T: First single from your band.
M: ‘I have all the parts’? Not bad… So, you’re saying sacrificing one to save four is the wrong choice?
T: I’m saying it’s a terrible choice. Which, apparently, is all that moms gets to make in this show! Mrs. Mills, Katrina, Lady Lancaster. (You forgot Katrina’s a mom, didn’t you?)
M: Yes, but what choice did she ever make that was wrong? That church in purgatory seemed cozy and well maintained, especially with the golem there to protect the kid.
T: CLEARLY wrong because: Henry.
M: Are we done with the episode yet?
T: Well, they have to go vanquish the thing itself. And then Hawley is all like “Give me the bone flute!” and Abbie’s like “No way!” and snaps it in half and hands it over.
T: And a Hessian comes and buys it from Hawley, despite it being broken. And then the Hessian gives it to Henry, who crushes it with a mortar and pestle and grins most creepily so, you know, BAD NEWS. And a golem DOESN’T LOVE YOU LIKE A MOTHER DOES. And, um, Irving signed his soul over to Henry. That blood signature? that was his soul going to the horseman of war.
M: Brilliant. That’s actually well played. And it makes Irvving’s appearance last episode even more underwhelming.
T: Will Reyes save him, do you think? That would be interesting. OKAY:
M: Go back a sec – how did they vanquish the piper?
T: Oh – noise cancelling headphones.
M: Srsly? Oh, for them. Of course.
T: And a well-placed spear.
M: A… spear?
T: Yeah. Abbie spears him.
M: WAIT. What was he playing if they had the flute and broke it?8
T: It was underwhelming.
M: No, this is an issue! How many bone flutes are lying around this town unnoticed?
T: He can whip his swords around REALLY REALLY fast and, um, physics.
M: ……. huh?
T: Yes. Exactly.
M: …. I don’t care enough to try and comprehend the last two minutes here.
T: Right, well, he gets dead.
M: You had an OKAY which we left dangling…
T: YES!! You haven’t figured out why i Iexted you so delighted at the end of the episode.
M: Better than mortar and pestle and grinning Henry, better than Irving’s soul being lost for the time being…
T: On this point, I almost think you’re actually a writer, or have the ear of a writer for the show, and are PLAYING me.
M: No, I just know from ridiculous.
T: But whyyyyyyyyy was I so delighted?
M: Does the horseman of famine finally show up? If so, is he Det. Handsome reborn?
T: That didn’t happen. but it might.
M: It totally might! John Cho?
M: Then I don’t care. Wait, lemme think…
T: It’s relevant to *me*.
M: But Tanya, I don’t think of anyone but myself.
T: No pie for you, Mucciolo.
M: Back to guessing: Katrina took a full breath!
T: Actually: there was no Katrina in this episode. (Also no Reyes, and I think no Jenny, either.) So, sadly, no.
M: So she might have taken a full breath.
T: Pics or it didn’t happen.
M: Did they eat pie at the diner like Abbie used to with Sherrif Clancy? I miss Sherrif Clancy…
T: Noooooo – but closer!
M: Is it pastry-based?
M: Oh. So no Bella’s shout out.
T: Well, they were at an eating establishment.
M: … and something Ichabod said delighted you to no end.
T: Something he …. drank …..
M: He ordered a fancy coffee!!
T: HE HAD A CAPPUCCINO.
M: ….. AHAHAHA
T: HE’S A CAPPUCCINO MAN
M: Did he wax poetic about his choice?
T: He diatribed on the price of fancy coffees being equivalent to that of three good horses and isn’t it a crime yadda yadda, oh this is very good.
T: So that’s where his nonexistent paycheck will be going from now on.
M: And next week, a disparaging comment about macchiatos while he hand grinds some artisanal beans.
T: Hahaha yep. Also he learned how to drive – because friends let friends drive their police cruisers.
M: I totally forgot about that.9 So is the episode worth watching?
T: He drinks a cappuccino. Of course it is! And Henry is UBER creep. The episode doesn’t really advance much, except for Irving’s storyline. And now Henry has the flute dust, so that’s portentous.
M: Yeah, I was going to ask earlier – this could have gone in any slot this season, right?
T: Yup. They’re assembling a cast of characters who knew Abbie and Jenny as girls, and their mom as she was going through her torment. Plus Hawley came back–and it almost looks cutesy-romantical between him and Abbie in the preview for next week. But really – coulda been anywhere in the season.
M: It’s still so piecemeal. Like, they get where they’re going, and use the pieces well, but only with a lot of running around and disjointedness in between those times where they use the pieces well.
T: And really: they wasted the pied pier’s death. That was just unsatisfying. And Hawley ends up more a nuisance than a help which… could be interesting?
M: That’s going to be his role. Any sort of flirting going on will cause Ichabod’s hair to go up due to his platonic lurv for Abbie – the ‘threat’ needs to, at the start at least, be flawed to give him reason to huff into his well-trimmed beard.
The conversation then meandered into general comments on needing sleep, and included the phrase “oh lord bahahaha sigh. ‘murrica” We’ll let you guess who typed what.
- It was a surprisingly prompt turnaround, yes. ↵
- Subtitle for every discussion about this show. ↵
- He’s quick, right ladies? ↵
- He definitely didn’t see where this was going. ↵
- Name of my next band. -M Approved! – T ↵
- The lament of all this site’s writers. -Ed. ↵
- See kids? Pays to stay in school. ↵
- Clearly Mooch is forgetting that he’s the one asking for an out of order recap here, so just ignore him. ↵
- Not like it was the central focus of the preview or anything, because they knew no one would care about the monster of the week. ↵