Sleepy Hollow Season 3, Episode 6
“This Red Lady From Caribee”
Posted by Sage
Fox announced their winter schedule this week and with it, a change that could really benefit Sleepy Hollow. When the network scheduled the front half of Season 3 to face off against Scandal on Thursdays at nine, we were like “????” Shonda owns Thursday nights, and may her reign be ever merciful. A move to Friday sounds like a death knell to some, but anything’s got to be better than going head-to-head with Olivia Pope. Plus, Fringe held that Friday night slot for several seasons. The X-Files was a Friday night show too, once upon a time. It’s a good-luck spot for genre television. So be chill, fandom. We’ve survived so much worse than this.
On to this week’s rankings!
Pandora is nothing if not efficient. She came to Sleepy Hollow to do a thing (six things), and six episodes in, she’s checked all the boxes on her list. Pandora needs to teach an organizational effectiveness course, and Moloch needs to take it.
This week, the mysterious lady is tending to the sixth bloom on her tree, “the flavor of fear.” We learn for certain that the blooms themselves are the weapons, or rather, the destructive emotions they represent. The creatures that Pandora conjures from her box are merely the distribution apparatus. And for this bloom, she requires “a most skilled emissary.” She recites a little rhyme and a swarm of red insects appear. They take the shape of a woman (me in my notes: “Carmen Sandiego Bug Lady”) who Pandora names as the “Red Lady From Caribee.” I don’t like bugs, you guys. Even the kind that wear couture. (That costume though.)
Ichabbie’s first brush with the Lady happens in the courthouse on the day that Crane is meant to defend himself from those pesky smuggling charges. As they get closer to the courtroom, they find people fleeing in fear, including Crane’s lawyer. The judge, a man Abbie had just been describing to Crane as calm and just, is ranting from the bench. There’s a criminal element that must be stamped out, he raves. And he lashes out angrily at anyone who suggest he maaaaybe stop hearing cases for the day and take care of those hives that are clearly consuming his body. (Another triumph for the Sleepy make-up department. Y’all are gross, and I love it.) He orders the bailiff to take out her weapon. Crane steps in front of the few people still left in the room (swoon) to speak to the judge. (“Ichabod Crane, for the defense.”) Before he can get much out of him, the man keels over and dies. Crane catches a glimpse of the swarm escaping through a vent and notes it in the ol’ photographic memory.
Back at the archive, Crane and Abbie do their Buffy research on this new threat. The judge died instantly of a brain aneurysm. And the only piece of evidence at the scene was a dead Jack Spaniel wasp, an insect that’s native to the Caribbean. As usual, a detail that just happens to match up to the past sends Crane flipping through Grace Dixon’s journal. She was once called to a military camp in Pennsylvania by Betsy Ross to help tend to a sick and paranoid General Washington. (I’m sure it wasn’t meant in this way, but I still think it’s hilarious that Grace described Betsy instead of naming her. Low-key shade.) The ladies figure that Washington had been bitten by a Soucouyant, a demon “of Trinidadian origin.” Hence the wasp. Grace tends to Washington with a tonic she prepared, but she warns Betsy that it’s not a cure. (Washington: “Dying is easy, young man, living is harder.”) The only cure is to kill the creature itself. Betsy arms up and leaves the tent. And if only these flashbacks could follow Betsy when she goes and does actual heroic things, maybe a) she wouldn’t be so insufferable, and b) Crane and Abbie would know what the sweet Jesus they’re supposed to do in any given situation instead of having to guess.
Abbie gets a call from Danny. There’s another dead body to deal with. This one is a suburban mom – the President of the PTA. She collapsed after checking hundreds of books out of the Sleepy Hollow library and building a pyre for them. Thank you, thank you, thank you, show, for characterizing book burning as a paranoid act. Bless you for this. Funny that Danny warns Abbie that if they can’t put a stop to whatever is causing this mania soon, “they’ll have a big problem” on their hands, re: public panic. This is a SMALL-ASS TOWN. You’re telling me that two healthy, well-respected people went insane and then dropped dead WITHIN THE SAME DAY and people aren’t freaking out yet? Where are the news crews? The other cops? DOES ANYONE CARE? No one outside of Abbie, Crane, and Danny are ever talking about these murders. Sleepy has a problem with scope that could be easily solved by inserting the voice of the town somewhere. May I suggest Perd Hapley as a capable news anchor? He’s got references.
I digress. Abbie pops on the phone to Crane and points out that the swarm is targeting people in positions of power. (“And look at me, profiling a bug.”) Danny returns from inside of the house and his demeanor is markedly different. He snaps at Abbie to get in the car and chastises her for letting her personal life interfere with work when she tells him it was her “roommate” on the phone. He’s driving erratically and questioning her about her motives. He rages that Crane can’t really be a historical consultant (ding ding ding) and that Abbie is obviously out to steal his FBI glory (wrong). Abbie notices a growing hive on his neck and knows immediately what’s up. Danny stops the car in the middle of the woods and drags Abbie out of the front seat, tossing away her phone. And then this happens. I call this move the “Bitch, you thought.”
Crane and Abbie descend into some ancient ruins that they’ve never seen before. (HOW? Again: small town. Where are these things hiding?) And I don’t know where or how Crane obtained a canister of prussic acid, but my head already aches from plot inconsistencies. I’ll let it slide. Pandora looks like she’s been waiting for the Witnesses to show up, and she’s as calm as ever. In fact, she thanks them for their service. (“Calling beasts out of the box was easy, you did all the hard work.”) She’s downright complacent watching Abbie destroy the hive and the Lady along with it. The sixth blossom is already blooming, and there’s nothing the Witnesses can do to stop it. “Bear witness,” she purrs, as her tree opens to admit her entrance. She disappears, and it seals back up. Later, Crane notes that trees are often points of entry to the underworld in literature, supporting the theory that Pandora has a boss who’s even more powerful than her. She’ll be back, the Witnesses agree. And they’ll be ready for her. Or them.
The sass-factor was relatively low in this episode. Things to do, bugs to squash. If I weren’t so tired of Zoe already, I’d have more enjoyed Crane and Abbie ribbing each other about their love lives. I’m firmly in the shipper camp of “yes, but not yet,” so I’m good with some platonic relationship talks. Theoretically. But I’m afraid I checked out whenever Zoe was mentioned, because I just don’t think she and Crane are at all compatible. Think about his other WCWs: Betsy, Katrina, and Abbie. One of these things is not like the other, and it’s Zoe’s “i’m just a wittle history fangirl and you’re so smart” thing. Crane wouldn’t respond to that. Not the Crane I know. I do enjoy his consistent weakness for fruity beverages, however.
More of Danny and Abbie’s history was revealed in this episode, and god, finally. Reynolds, you poor bastard. While he’s still suffering the effects of the bite, Danny lets some personal stuff slip to his ex. Personal stuff like he’s still madly in love with her. And god love Grace Abigail Mills, because her reaction isn’t one of shock or guilt. She just hears it and processes it, and continues to do everything she can to save his life. (“Nothing I didn’t already know.”) I’ve liked getting to know Danny so far, but this line brought out some major side-eye:
Look, buddy. It’s not Abbie’s fault that she’s an actual goddess on earth and that you’re into her. You desiring her isn’t something she’s done to you. Abigail Mills does not string men along, and she does not play games. I’m assuming that she ended things with Danny, and end them she did. If he wants to moon over her forever, that’s his concern. “We’re fine,” Abbie tells Crane about “her” Agent Reynolds. “And he’s not mine.” And vice versa, you fuck.
THE FRIEND ZONE DOES NOT EXIST. 2/10 Donut Holes.
Ichabbie, I can wait for. But Joenny is so on right now.
Last week, Reynolds approached Abbie with a photograph of Jenny dealing with Sofie, one of Atticus Nevins’s main operatives. He’s the center of an FBI investigation, so whatever business Jenny has with him, Abbie needed to tell her to hold off. This week, Abbie visits Jenny at Mabie’s to update her and offers to break the news to Joe herself that he’ll have to stop digging into his father’s mysterious past. Jenny isn’t having any of that, because they “started this thing together” and that’s how they’ll finish it. She feels some ownership of Little Joey Corbin’s emotional well-being, and really, I’m fine. Also, she has no intention of walking away. So there’s that.
Being the resident medicine man, Joe is charged with brewing up Grace’s tonic for Danny. He and Jenny visit one of Jenny’s various off-the-beaten path resources, Azzaca, the proprietor of a shop that deals in herbs and medicines. And friends, like I said above: Azzaca ships it real bad. He basically congratulates Jenny on finding a good one (It helps that Joe offers him cash for the ingredient they need.), and even offers them some Irish moss to keep them energized during “those long nights.” Let’s hear it for having no filter. Joe and Jenny even do the thing where the people who are attracted to each other protest too vehemently and in almost total harmony that they’re soooo not a thing. Azzaca thinks they’re full of shit, and so do I. I am living.
No extreme Ichabbie moments this week, and that’s okay by me. As much as I hope this Zoe thing is wrapped up sooner rather than later, it wouldn’t become Crane at all to be giving his partner the eye while he’s wooing another woman. Still, there were instances of unconditional support and other disgusting and noble things like that.
Head canon is that Joey kept that Irish moss just in cases. 7/10 Fist Bumps for Joe/Jenny shippiness alone.
Goddammit, Joey. You were doing so well. Young Corbin played Atticus Nevins so completely that my entire Twitter timeline was crying over his apparent double-cross of Jenny. The idea of Joe Corbin being another opportunistic treasure hunter ready to screw over Jennifer Mills was unspeakably distressing, which just goes to show the impact this character has already had on the fandom. If he ever gets tire of EMTing, Joe should look into acting. Or at least try out for Sleepy Hollow community theater. Because, damn, I believed it.
Nevins knew August Corbin. And according to him, he knew him well. A grain of salt there, since Nevins is not a nice guy and has reason to play up his familiarity with Corbin’s dark side in the interest of shaking up Joe. At the very least, there’s still more to August Corbin than Jenny, Joe, and the audience know. (“You’re exactly like him. You’re drawn to the darkness and you can’t look away.”) Against Abbie’s specific orders, Joe dangles the Shard in front of Nevins in order to find out the meaning of two strings of numbers on the back of a old photograph of Atticus and August in the service. They’re Swiss bank accounts, Joe tells Jenny after they MASTERFULLY shake Nevins and his entourage down. “And you believe him?” Jenny asks. I…but…if that information is suspect, then what was the whole point of the meeting? I don’t think that either Jenny or Joe knew that the Shard actually opened, so the purpose wasn’t to see what Nevins would do with it, right? (Also, that prop looked cheap af, sorry guys.) But back to why I’m mad at Joe: he watched Nevins put a glove on before he handled the red disc inside the Shard. And then he failed to warn Jenny to handle it with care when she got her own hands on it. The disc, which Nevins referred to as the “power” he was seeking, dissolves in Jenny’s hand, and that’s no good. When Azzaca touched Jenny’s hand earlier in the episode, he had a premonition and told Joe to look out for her. “Watch yourself, sis,” he said. “Your fate has changed.”
At New York Comic Con, witer/producer Raven Metzner hinted that a character would change sides during the course of this season. But I ask you, hasn’t Jenny Mills been through enough? The power of Shard is now inside her. (WHY DIDN’T SHE GO BACK TO AZZACA AND TELL HIM? Surely he would have been able to offer some kind of help off “the red list.”) The episode ends on Jenny’s scattered nightmare: strange symbols, a couple of skulls, and animalistic eyes in a human face. Your basic harbingers of demonic possession. Does the Shard have a connection to Pandora’s bigger plan? Will Jenny be a pawn in that plan? Can she at least make out with Joe once before the darkness takes her? Time will tell.
PROTECT JENNIFER MILLS. 8/10 Golems.
Thoughts For The Archive
- Well, now I’m hungry for Korean barbecue.
- When Abbie wants Crane to go off on American history, she tells him to “play the hits.”
- In addition to everything else it does, Pandora’s tree grows earrings.
- “I’d like to give you a history lesson.” – Pandora reminding Crane that the world didn’t begin in 1771.
- “Prussic acid, very unstable.” “Right now, so am I.”
- “You’re making a big mistake.” “That’s my specialty.”
Kim will be your recapper for next week’s episode! What did you think of “This Red Lady Of Caribee”? Let’s talk it out in the comments.”