[This is a review of the Sleepy Hollow season 1 finale. There will be SPOILERS.]
The Sleepy Hollow season one finale is nothing short of spectacular, as Abbie, Ichabod, and the rest of the gang fight for the survival of the human race. There are twists, turns, and more whiplash than should be allowed in a two-hour event such as this, but creators Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman (Star Trek) deliver a finale that will leave us all begging for the return of one of the best new series on television.
Pulling off a quality finale is no easy task, and every show does it differently. HBO's Game of Thrones reaches its climax each season during the penultimate episode, leaving the finale as a setup for the following season. Unlike the aforementioned hit series, Sleepy Hollow has decided to let us taste all the delicacies in its final hour. In a show that has been as unpredictable as any since Lost, what else would you expect?
As with many of the reviews this season, it seems appropriate to begin by discussing the comedic aspects of these two episodes before tunneling into the horrors our heroes had to endure. Sleepy Hollow has not only given us terrifying moments and thrilling action sequences, but it has become one of the funnier shows on television. This may be blasphemous to say, but as far as comedy goes, Sleepy Hollow can at times outshine the "big boys," like Modern Family. Perhaps that is too bold a statement to make, but where can one watch a grown man make a declaration of love and devotion to Siri, as we all witnessed this week? Ichabod's observation of Abbie's numerous friends on her social networks was also a moment of pure hilarity: "How is it that you have 500 friends?" Drama and comedy are difficult to mix, yet Sleepy Hollow appears to do it effortlessly.
While the finale plays like a 2-hour non-stop-thrill-ride, it is comprised of two individual episodes. The first, entitled 'The Indispensable Man,' leads Abbie and Ichabod on a journey to find the map to Purgatory that has been buried with General George Washington. Tom Mison gives another stellar performance, as the wearied-faced revolutionary weighs the importance of saving Katrina over saving humanity. Even after coming to an "accord" with Abbie, Ichabod's photographic memory will not allow him to forget the map that will take him to his beloved.
Ichabod fulfilled the prophecy by giving Abbie's soul to Moloch, but it was not on the demon's terms. Abbie and Ichabod's ever-evolving relationship has been one of this seasons' strengths, and it was none more powerful as Abbie agrees to stay behind in Purgatory. It's important to note that many (this reviewer included) feel that at some point, Ichabod and Abbie could form a romantic relationship; however, it could be a detriment to the series to take such a path. How much more passion can the two show for one another as they embrace with Ichabod promising he will return for her? Sex, or any other kind of physical contact would only cheapen their love for each other. In the future, would you like to see a more romantic link between our two heroes, or is their friendship enough?
'Bad Blood' is the title of the second episode, where all the "bleep!" hits the fan. In another moment of comedic genius, Ichabod does get some new clothes from a Revolutionary War re-enactment site, but it's basically the same outfit he wore before. The tests that Ichabod and Abbie had to pass in Purgatory had similar themes, which were appropriate for their relationship. Each of our heroes had to confront their "father-figures," whom they so desperately wished to be reunited with. For Abbie, she just wanted to see Sheriff Corbin again, while Ichabod desired nothing more than for his father to accept him as he was. Sleepy Hollow has consistently done an excellent job developing backstories for its leading characters. Captain Irving's story, however, is another matter.
Orlando Jones has given some of his best performances over the last couple of weeks, as his family has come under attack by Moloch's minions. The problem is not the lack of character development, it's just not that interesting of a story. With all the drama and over-the-top action in 'Bad Blood,' the story of Irving turning himself in to save his daughter (Macey) is the least compelling character-arc on Sleepy Hollow. Hopefully, as the series continues to mature, Irving will be given something more interesting to do than be a side-story to the main plot. Like his counterparts (Ichabod, Abbie, and Jenny), Irving deserves a moment to shine in the spotlight.
Alright, so let's discuss the moment where we all went OMG! Henry is actually Jeremy, who is Ichabod's son, who turns out to be the Horseman of War, who breaks the second seal? Can anyone explain all of this madness? When John Noble first joined the cast as the "Sin Eater," there was speculation has to how big of a role the veteran actor would play. With this new twist in the finale, it appears we'll be seeing a lot more of him in season 2. Noble will undoubtedly be an incredible addition to the Sleepy Hollow rouges gallery, which already includes the Headless Horseman and Moloch. Now, before closing the book on this exceptional season, we should take a look at where all of our characters ended up.
It's safe to say, that no one is in a "good" place at the end of 'Bad Blood.' Abbie is trapped in Purgatory with Moloch, while Ichabod has been buried alive to face the same fate as his son Jeremy. Katrina, who in all honesty needs to be fleshed out more in season 2, has been captured by her one-time suitor Abraham Van Brunt (a.k.a. the Headless Horseman). As stated earlier, Captain Irving will most likely be awaiting trial for a crime he didn't commit and is unable to explain. Don't forget Jenny, who was knocked unconscious after a terrible car accident after a run-in with the Horseman of Death. Lastly, what do you think happened to Andy Brooks (John Cho)? Was he crushed under the falling rubble in George Washington's tomb, or do you think we'll see more of our troubled ex-police officer in season 2?
The wait for season 2 won't be easy, but like Ichabod and Abbie we must have "faith" that the series will return with the same vigor and reckless abandonment as its first season. Sleepy Hollow has yet to "play it safe" when it comes to crafting its characters and their fascinating stories. Like Ichabod said to Abbie before leaving Purgatory, "I choose to forge my fate with you" Sleepy Hollow. Where do you see the story going when the show returns in the fall?
Sleepy Hollow will continue this fall on Fox.