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Sleepy Hollow – S1E11 – The Vessel

Previously, on Sleepy Hollow: “The Golem

It’s been three long, holiday-filled weeks, but Ichabod, Abbie, and the rest of the Sleepy Hollow Scoobies are back to battle the forces—erm, the horses—of the evil.

While we were apart, it looks like Abbie took Icky to do a little holiday wardrobe shopping. Change out his shirt for a plaid flannel and he could be the East Atlanta Special! He’ll have to lose the attitude, though. No hipster will have him as their king if he thinks that skinny jeans are a sign of the impending apocolypse…even if he is correct.

Sleepy Hollow | Skinny jeans

Back to business, Icky has got to figure out what Moloch meant by threatening Abbie’s soul, even though Abbie thinks this riddle was meant for him to chase his tail.

Over at the police station, Irving is having the cocoa vendor raked over the coals to figure out what he meant about possessing the Cap’n’s daughter. He’s got Morales with him, replete with shit-eating grin (is that foreshadowing, or is he just a jerk?) as well as Morales’s nameless blonde buddy from a previous episode. With no prior infractions and a clean polygraph test, the cocoa vendor seems to be innocent, but you can’t fool a Cap’n—he knows something is fishy here. With no info coming from the cocoa vendor they need to pull in the woman who bumped into him in the park and (unbeknownst to Cap’n Irving) was possessed by the floating demon.

Oh, well here’s the woman now! Super nice of her to show up at the police station to see the Cap’n; if only that pesky demon would stay in one place. Now it’s possessed one of the policemen, and before long Cap’n gets another creepy-voiced phone call about his daughter’s soul. The call is coming from inside the precinct! The voice wants Washington’s bible or the Cap’n’s daughter’s soul, which it explains by writing in disappearing blood on the wall in front of the Cap’n. Cap’n storms into the main room, trying to find the creep on the phone, and as he attacks one of his poor policemen, the demon hops again and walks right out the door in the body of Morales’s blonde buddy cop.

Not at all visibly shaken by this ordeal, Cap’n gets on the horn with his favorite priest, who confirms that the devil can absolutely take over a human soul. He orders Cap’n to get his family to a safe place where he can meet them…so Cap’n makes a stop to see Ichabod and Abbie at the batcave, naturally. Or rather, to see the bible that is causing such a fuss. Ichabod knows from conversations with his dead wife that the bible is the key to defeating evil, even though so far it hasn’t really been more helpful than any other non-historical bible.

Going through Sheriff Corbin’s notes, Abbie finds an entry that sounds just like the demon in question—body hopping, people left with no recollection, etc. Since Corbin made a video recording of his “findings”, Abbie pops the disk in to find her sister Jenny on the screen, 19 years old and all sorts of demonic.

Sleepy Hollow | Jenny on television.

Jenny doesn’t remember any of the demon possession, which seems to be pretty standard for this particular demon, and would rather hand over the bible than relive something she can’t even remember. The catch-22 is not lost on any of them that they need the bible to defeat the demon to save Macy, but the demon is demanding the bible in order to let Macy live! They sit down to watch the video, hoping for a clue…and instead get a pasty, sweaty, full-on possessed Jenny, predicting Corbin’s death and promising to kill Abbie. Jenny rushes to turn off the video, apparently now remembering that she threatened Abbie’s life, and makes a hasty exit, refusing to rehash the past just to help save poor Macy.

Oh, Cap’n…the first rule of a secret safe house is to not tell anyone, especially your best Lietenant’s ex-boyfriend and his adorable demon-possessed buddy! This is Horror Movie 101 stuff!! While Cap’n unloads the ex-Mrs Cap’n and Macy into their new slightly-secret hiding spot, adorable buddy cop and Morales help unload the trunk, up until buddy cop unloads a little demon action into Morales (and not in a homosexual kind of way).

Ichabod finds Jenny still in her car, and has to navigate the standard car-full-of-trash-and-brassieres in order to slide in and a have a chat about what it means to be a Mills’ sister. For the sake of Macy, he convinces her to give up her story, and Jenny finally obliges. Turns out Jenny was getting herself locked up on purpose to make sure she couldn’t get too close to Abbie; she knew that the demon wanted to kill Abbie, and had to do what she could to keep her sister safe.

Taking a page from the Winchesters, Cap’n’s priest lines the windows with salt and sprinkles holy water on the doorstep, while Morales and buddy (Jones, by the way) scoff, although one pokes fun cause he’s a demon and one just cause he knows nothing. The laugh is on them, though, as Demon Cop discovers he can’t actually cross the salt barrier. He taunts Jones into messing up the salt line, and then as a way of thanks breaks his back and throws him in the bushes.

Back at the batcave, Ichabod is mastering the art of hogging the remote, but stumbles on something interesting in Jenny’s possession video—salt! Corbin also used salt to trap demons. But even more interesting than that is what possessed Jenny says during her video. Figuring that demons usually speak backwards (common knowledge, far more so than using salt), they listen to the audio backwards to discover that Demon Jenny references Ancitif, one of Moloch’s legion of demons sent specifically to destroy apostles. (Sleepy Hollow writers sure spend their time researching, which is part of what makes this show so fantastic. Ancitif is the main player in the Louviers Witch Trials of 1647 that Abbie mentions). Since Corbin has a reference book that seems to contain all of the demons and their weaknesses—maybe someone could take a day and read it? Maybe be a step ahead of next week’s evil? —they find that all they need to exorcise Ancitif is a church-blessed lantern. Easy peasy! Oh, you mean it has to be a specific lantern ordered by Benjamin Franklin to be used in demon fighting…well that does make it more difficult. Or it would, if Jenny didn’t already know where to find it!

Sleep Hollow | Surveillance

Cap’n sets up surveillance video on his safe house, and at about 5 minutes too late everything looks copasetic. Macy goes off to study her books, giving the ex-Mrs. and Cap’n a little time to reminisce about that horrible disfiguring accident that their daughter was in. Cap’n takes a walk to the pier to take a call from Abbie, who relays the good news about the lantern, but is interrupted  AGAIN by another call coming from inside the house (the Cap’n’s theme for this week, to be sure). He answers Det. Morales’ call to discover that Morales is the demon! And Cap’n is out of time—it’s already sunset!! Cap’n sprints back to the house as doors inside start slamming shut. He discovers Morales’ body lying on the floor next to Macy’s now empty wheelchair, and as she screams for her daddy from the next room, he runs in to find her floating in the center of the room, possessed by Ancitif. Sure would have been handy to have a priest around the house at a time like this…

Sleepy Hollow | Floating Macy.

Sometimes it pays to have a criminal on your side. Jenny directs Abbie from the backseat to the house of the Millers, some of her former “friends” who also happen to be Doomsdayers–or“sensible folk”, as Ichabod calls them. She knows for a fact they have one of the lanterns in their Apocolypse Shelter, but since they’re a little itchy on the trigger finger, it will be easier if she just sneaks in and steals it. Or rather, if Abbie just sneaks in and steals it. Baby sister can’t get arrested while out on parole!

Oh hey, there is a priest in the house! Cap’n’s priest starts the exorcism but it quickly goes awry. Macy’s limbs start to grow and stretch and her face contorts; Ancitif is showing his true form. The demon quickly dispatches the priest, and demands Washington’s bible in exchange for Macy’s soul and the ex-Mrs. Cap’n’s life. The Cap’n gets on the phone with our trio to let them know that their time is up, subtly tipping them off that he’s going to the batcave to get Washington’s bible and also that Macy is the newest victim of Ancitif.

Jenny tries to walk Abbie and Ichabod through the tripwires and surveillance on the Miller compound. Maybe it would have been easier for Jenny to just do this herself…They make it to the door of the bunker and step in to find rows and rows of supplies, from gas masks and canned goods to religious relics. While Crane waxes on about the Mills’ sisters committing crimes to save each other, Abbie locates the lantern that is just out of Ichabod’s reach. Instead of pulling up a stool like a sensible man, he gives Abbie a sexy boost and the lantern is theirs…until they walk out of the bunker door to find themselves surrounded by floodlights, guns, and fanatics.

Sleepy Hollow | Caught

Ichabod tries to talk reason into these upstate rednecks with Southern accents, but instead gets an earful of poetry? These are some educated Doomsdayers, quoting Jonathan Edwards’ famous sermon about the realities of Hell. Icky senses a kindred spirit in Mr. Weaver, the head fanatic, and appeals to his since of reason by explaining that the end of days is actually upon them. His rousing speech gets a shot gun pointed right at his head, but all of a sudden Jenny appears behind all of them, fully armed. She spent her time picking the lock on the squad-car’s gun safe, and now is ready to save the day! She promises Weaver that the lantern will be returned, and Weaver acquiesces, since he never could say no to Jenny…which also means that they could have just asked for it in the first place instead of sneaking around theiving it. The heroes rush off with a peal of tires to head back to the batcave.

Sleepy Hollow | Badass Jenny

The Cap’n also has a little lock-picking ability, but as he opens the bible’s case he finds it empty. Ancitif taunts Cap’n about his daughter’s accident, and Cap’s decides to appeal to the little girl inside the demon. This is the time, of all times, that he picks to apologize for her accident, and it almost works…until Ancitif grabs the ex-Mrs. by the throat and flicks Cap’n across the room.

Jenny appears from around the corner, and she and Ancitif have a show down. Seems when she was possessed, Ancitif was merely acting on Jenny’s inner anger towards her sister—not all of that Abbie-murdering talk was from the demon. Ancitif tries to appeal to Jenny’s still-dark soul, but Abbie steps up and taunts the demon right back for only picking on children.

Sleepy Hollow | Abbie and Ancliff.

She suggests the demon take her on for size, and as the demon rushes on Abbie it is thrown back by the secret salt line that Ichabod placed while the camera wasn’t on him. He steps out from a locker (?) and shines the light of the blessed lantern into Ancitif’s face. As he is exorcised from Macy’s body, he tells the crowd that the plan is already in motion, and that the evil cannot be stopped by the Witnesses, and then is thrown back to Hell in a spectacular display of light and good CGI. Macy wakes up not knowing what has happened but ultimately safe and in an uncharacteristic display of non-angry emotion, Jenny cries a single tear while Abbie gives her best big-sister hug.

Taking a break at the cabin, Ichbod makes the weirdest cocktail ever while Abbie wonders if Cap’n would have really turned the bible over to Ancitif. Would have turned the bible over if Ichabod hadn’t hidden it first, she means—sneaky Ichabod, trying to be one step ahead of demons everywhere! Crane is actually making a solution to read the invisible ink in Washington’s bible, and as he spreads it over the pages and in glowing highlighter yellow a date appears: December 18th, 1799. The words are written in Washington’s own hand, except that G. Dub died 4 days before the date listed. How in the world could he have written a date on a piece of paper before he died? Did Washington just write a future date in his bible, or did he somehow (and more likely, in Sleepy Hollow) write it after he expired??

Next week on Sleepy Hollow: A two-hour (or two episode) season finale. If you’re on the east coast, be ready to start an hour early at 8 PM, and cross your fingers that either John Cho or the Headless Horseman make an appearance!

About Robyn Horton (94 Articles)
Robyn grew up a military brat whose parents let her indulge in her love of literature, mythology, movies, musicals, and Kings Quest (without telling her how nerdy they were). She is now a reformed graphic designer with a husband, two dogs, a Sweeney Todd themed bathroom, and a burning need to know how many books really can fit in one house.

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