Sleepy Hollow – Season 1, Episode 3 – “The Root of All Evil” – War the Strategist

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We continue our review of “Sleepy Hollow,” with the third episode of the season, “The Root of All Evil.” This episode is great at showing us more how War’s mind works and how he seeks to isolate Abbie and Ichabod from their allies while causing turmoil in Sleepy Hollow.

The episode was written by Melissa Blake and Donald Todd and directed by Jeffrey Hunt.

The premise is that War has brought a coin that can cause people to betray their cause and family. It is a coin that turned Judas and the coin that turned Benedict Arnold and now it’s in Sleepy Hollow. It is here we see him first try it out and later use it to hurt Sleepy Hollow at the core when it is given to Jenny after we find out that the new sheriff put her and Abbie’s mother in the mental institute. From here the story unfolds.

Here is the assessment of the episode:

The Pros: Katrina – We only see her for a little while but she is using her position to turn the Horsemen against one another as Death feels angry at having to stay hidden and has to be told to “Take it up with Moloch.” As to why he’s not being used. We see that she is still torn over her feelings over Henry though and points out to the Headless Horseman that Henry is still connected to her since he chose to stay at the home he was born in.

Jenny – This is a great Jenny episode! We see her hatred towards War and the Sheriff for how she put their mother into an asylum. War as Henry takes advantage of this and gets her the coin and it is only through her friend Nick Hawley, Abbie talking her down and Ichabod that prevent her from shooting the sheriff.

Ichabod Crane – From his friendship with Benedict Arnold and us learning through him that Benedict was a victim of dark magic, his issues with Nick Hawley whose ego is just as great as Ichabod’s and the Sheriff asking him for evidence of his existence…Ichabod has a lot going on as well as Abbie bringing up that Katrina chose to stay with the Horseman of Death and that she is the wife of the Horseman of War so she doesn’t trust Katrina for when it comes down to having to face War. Ichabod still has all this sinking in, but it’s new information…and he’s called out “letting” Katrina stay with the Horseman of Death. We see him visit Detective Irving secretly in the asylum too and warn him that the safest place for him may be staying if War is his lawyer trying to get him out. Leaving Detective Irving once more with a dilemma.

Abbie – Abbie is fantastic in this episode! We see her call Ichabod out on his bias towards his wife, we see her talk Jenny down on killing the sheriff so they can find the truth and she is active throughout the entire episode, eventually getting her mother’s file and finding out demons were haunting her mother and that she always regretted not being able to raise Abbie and Jenny.

Detective Reyes – We see more complexity in her character when she gives Abbie the file on her mother after she asks Abbie why Abbie hacked her account. We see that she does care a lot for them and is in  difficult situation. It is great seeing her by the book approach cause trouble though since Ichabod has no files of his existence and Henry is active in Sleepy Hollow.

Detective Irving – Is secretly visited by Ichabod who tells him of War keeping Abbie and him from the Detective and that he best stay in there if he wants to stay safe since War can’t have good designs on him. We see him left conflicted after since he’s been a prisoner for a while now and wants to live again, even if he desires to protect Sleepy Hollow.

The Horseman of War / Henry Parish – Henry is a lawyer and we see him using that to get the coin to turn Jenny against the sheriff and use his position as a lawyer to play with Ichabod. “Aren’t you proud your son became a lawyer father?” He has great designs and we see he’s designed a board of Sleepy Hollow where he marks the bombing by one of the people who the coin changed. It is for this reason and the fact that he won at the end of Season 1 that he is the one to be most feared at this point. Death is a warrior and Moloch is a force of nature kept beyond the vale…War is a complex reality.

Okay: Nick Hawley – Not a bad guest star and character, but he vanishes after he catches the coin in Holy Glass, so we still don’t know where his allegiance is and he was most wit, not so much character there. We never got his motivation beyond money. Wasn’t bad, just wasn’t given much.

This was a solidly great episode and one of my favorites. I’d highly recommend it for how it explores War, Abbie and Jenny and that it makes Detective Reyes more than just an antagonist. She is one of the good guys shown by War trying to get Jenny to kill her. This gives me hope for what is it come, though I would not mind her or Irving become one of the other 2 Horsemen.

Final Score: 9.6 / 10. Not perfect because Nick Hawley wasn’t fully explored as a character.

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