“Sleepy Hollow”: Analyzing the “Deliverance” preview

The Examiner published this preview of “Deliverance,” and the mention of “Ichatrina” didn’t help the Ichabbie fans who seemed to have had a rough week, between the general concern of ratings, Katia Winter’s tweet, and other stuff.

TV Preview: Sleepy Hollow’s “Deliverance” A Turning Point and Test

Here are my two cents on what was discussed in the article, as well as some opinions on characterization.

Ichatrina vs. Ichabbie

Those that are “Ichatrina” fans will be taken on a journey of pure adoration for the couple, but also be reminded why we love Ichabod so much! The lengths that he goes to help his wife, even after all the lies, is nothing short of unconditional love. Though the two have been apart for centuries, it is clear to see how devoted they are to each other, no matter what is thrown in their path. Not only will the couple face an extraordinary circumstance, but Ichabbie comes to a crossroads of sorts where they will be tested like never before.

I realize this will sound patronizing to some, but I would suggest for everyone concerned about this episode to calm down a little. it’s past a given that we’d have to deal with Ichabod and Katrina’s relationship. Whatever’s laid out for their relationship has to play through. Also, of course, we know Katrina will survive. She’s in the “Heartless” episode (still out of colonial clothing, which shows just how deep the divide is between Ichabod and Katrina on a sartorial level).

I, like most people who watch this show, want to see Ichabod and Abbie together eventually. But it wouldn’t make any sense to have them together now when there’s so much up in the air emotionally with everyone. If you think the show is “terrible” now because Katrina’s been a focus, just imagine how it would be if Ichabod and Abbie prematurely got together. It wouldn’t be a deserved moment and fans would be up in arms since Abbie would, indeed, be The Other Woman in a married man’s relationship. Scandal is already doing the absolute most with that storyline as it is, and the implications in it are troubling; I wouldn’t want to see that messiness in Sleepy Hollow because that would turn me off the show completely.

If “Deliverance” will bring more clarity to Katrina, then bring it on. We’ve only recently become interested in her from “The Weeping Lady.” If we see pertinent flashbacks or get more info about Katrina, then I think it would serve the whole fandom, not just Ichatrina fans.

We also don’t know what the “crossroads” Ichabod and Abbie come to. I think that would bring a lot of interest to all Sleepy Hollow fans. I can already tell that the “crossroads” has something to do with what Katia Winter was tweeting about. A lot of people took her tweet a certain way, but her tweet only made me more interested as to what’s going to go down. If we’re going down the shipper route, keep in mind that Katrina and Ichabod acknowledge that a wedge has been driven between them. I would believe that the “crossroads” also has something to do with the recognition of this wedge.

Another thing—whenever Fox doesn’t release promos or pictures for a Sleepy Hollow episode means that something huge is about to go down. I believe they did this for the S1 episode featuring Grace Dixon and the revelation that Ichabod has a son. Whatever’s going to happen in “Deliverance” is going to be big.

Ichabod’s loyalty and why it matters to his Witness-hood

One thing that I like about Ichabod is his extreme loyalty. Ichabod’s loyalty is a point of contention that I’ve seen play out in many Tumblr arguments, and I don’t get it, personally. His loyalty is praised when he’s with Abbie, but is immediately discouraged when he’s trying to save his wife and son. My question is who wouldn’t try to save their family and preserve the little bit of normalcy they have left? It would be immoral, honestly, for him to not try to save them. If he didn’t go out of his way to try to save Katrina and Henry, that would make him callous and callousness isn’t what’s part of being a Witness. How could a person who calls themselves “Witness” save the world, but turn his back on his own family?

We already know that a Witness can’t save the world and blindly ignore their loved ones from Abbie’s relationship with Jenny. Through her ordeal with the Sandman, she was forced to face her mistake with Jenny and now they’re on the road towards having a better relationship. If Ichabod didn’t try his best to save his family, he wouldn’t be worthy of the title of “Witness.”

Compare Ichabod and Abbie’s actions in terms of familial relations with Henry. The reason Henry is one of Moloch’s soldiers is because he’s turned his back on his family. Yes, his life kinda set him up for a bad path, but Henry always had a level of choice when it came to Moloch—Henry made the deal to work for him, meaning he was active in the choice to make his parents’ lives miserable. I think the show is equating family to the idea of The Self; the Witnesses can’t have shards of themselves they’re ignoring while on God’s mission. But to do evil, it’s necessary to have shards of yourself ignored so your conscience can stay suppressed.

Henry’s turning point

The episode further explores Henry‘s allegiance, even as his father attempts to reach the humanity within him. It also reveals a part of his past that surprises Ichabod, which only fuels his desire to push his son towards redemption. Question is, will Henry allow this side of him to be ignited? How loyal is he to Moloch who rose him from the grave, only to realize the love he seeks will never be found in the monster?

Do I think Henry will be turned? I honestly don’t know. I still think that Joe Corbin had a good point when he told Ichabod to just tell Henry that he loved him, since Henry’s never heard that in his life. But after you allow a demon to invade your mother’s body, does that mean that Henry’s redemption is too late? There’s a certain point when it’s just too much. As I said in my recap, after Ichabod tries everything he can to redeem his son, he might just have to throw his hands up and feel good about at least trying to bring his son back to the light.

Just so it won’t seem like I’m contradicting myself about my “familial relations” point: It’s one thing not to try to patch things up. It’s a completely different thing to try your hardest and not get the desired outcome. Ichabod can’t be knocked for trying.

The promise of great performances

It’s incredibly well written and acted. Katia Winter shines like never before and Tom Mison’s scene with John Noble is nothing short of brilliant, definitely Emmy-worthy, proving once again how fabulously talented they are. Nichole Beharie’s performance also delivered, conveying a real struggle within Abbie as a tough decision is discussed with Ichabod. She’s sort of between a rock and a hard place, trying to walk the line of being there for her partner, while keeping their mission to stop the apocalypse center stage. How do you tell Ichabod he may need to sacrifice either his wife or son for the greater good of mankind? It’s a slippery slope.

I’m excited to see just how great these performances will be. That sentence sounds like shade, but it isn’t.

The episodes we’ve seen so far (apart from the season premiere) have been of the filler-plus category. They’re kind of meaningless in the long run, but have tidbits in them that will affect the story’s trajectory. I think the writers might have been aware of how the viewers’ patience might be tested, and I think this is what all of the episodes were building to.

Also, this episode is more than just a “ship war” episode. Abbie is facing a huge dilemma of having to tell Ichabod that he might have to give up on his wife and son. I believe that the moment in “And the Abyss Gazes Back” when Ichabod tells Abbie that he might have to give up on Joe is a precursor to this upcoming conversation. It seemed like Joe was gone for good, but Abbie was able to bring him back.

Abbie has to now tell Ichabod that he might have to give up on his family. Of course, the stakes were low with Joe in comparison to how entrenched Henry and Katrina are in the Apocalyptic fight, but the conversation will revolve around the same situation Abbie was in—when do you decide it’s time to give up on your family?

Just like how Abbie didn’t give up on Joe, I don’t expect Ichabod to give up on either Katrina or Henry because there’s always a chance (to him) that they can be redeemed. Will they be redeemed? I don’t know. Things seem pretty bleak and a simple incantation won’t solve these deeply-rooted Crane issues.

As far as Ichabod’s arc goes, it would seem that it’s been building up to the point where Ichabod will have to face the reality of his family. Abbie might have to confront him about the decisions in front of him, but he’ll have to make the choice about his family by himself. I would like to bring back the fact that Ichabod was abandoned by his own father when he left for America. I think Ichabod has been affected because of that and doesn’t want to become his father, in a way. He doesn’t want to give up on Henry if he doesn’t have to, even if Henry might bring him (and the cause) down. Ichabod’s decision re: his family won’t just be about Katrina. In fact, his reluctance now is probably more about Henry.

Again, I just want to stress that we might be able to learn much more about Katrina than before. I know the talk about this episode has been rough—the whole shipping issue and all—but this just might be the Katrina-centric episode that will give us the true picture of Katrina as a character.

I do have to say, though, that I hope we can finally see more of Jenny at some point this season. But this episode also promises no Hawley, who doesn’t do it for me, so there’s that.

Okay, rant-analysis over. What is your take on “Deliverance”?

Tom Mison as Ichabod Crane and Nicole Beharie as Abbie Mills in “Bad Blood.” Photo credit: Brownie Harris/FOX

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