Sleepy Hollow: “Paradise Lost” Recap

Is it just me or does anyone else feel like Sleepy Hollow just snuck up upon them all of a sudden? With all the talk about Winter Hiatus shows like Galavant & Agent Carter, I figured it’d be a few more weeks until our usual shows returned. Though with only one episode in, I am SO happy Sleepy Hollow returned early for the second half of its second season. So where to now?

We pick up almost exactly where we left off a month or so ago; but there’s quite a few time leaps. Not only do Ichabod , Abbie and Katrina awaken an undisclosed amount of time after the Midseason finale (Minutes? Hours?); but the majority of the episode takes place 6 weeks later with everyone trying to redefine their lives and make sense of everything thus far. This is as good a point as any for us to start making sense of things as well, so let’s begin our Recap/Closer Look at “Paradise Lost”

Exploring Different Religions, Apocalypses, Etc:

With The Horrid King defeated and the Horsemen of the Apocalypse defeated – or at least 2 of them – the Apocalypse according to the Book or Revelations seems basically over. Though evil has never existed in just one form or religion, and – as we learned from Clarke Wolfe’s sit down with Showrunner Mark Goffman – this season will begin expanding the roster. We got hints of it during the Fall season with the Gorgon and Hawley’s exotic weapons; and this season will push that forward even more.

Sleepy Hollow Paradise Lost Orion

For this first episode, we did remain in the Judeo-Christian sect; but with a different tale this time based loosely off of Milton’s famous Paradise Lost, the story of Lucifer’s fall among other things. So will this season be all of Paradise Lost? Not really, but this seasons main potential villain certainly represents the overarching theme in a brilliant parallelism. There will undoubtedly be even more exploration past this as Hawley began mentioning a Sumerian Demon Locator. Will this season start heading that way? Perhaps, but the world of good and evil is about to explode big time.

Paradise Lost – Orion & Lucifer:

As I just mentioned, Paradise Lost follows the tale of Lucifer’s fall; and this first episode – by the same name – was drenched in references and allusions to this famous tale. Perhaps Sleepy Hollow has just trained us to not trust anyone; but when Orion first appeared with his black wings, things just seemed a little too easy. Though it wasn’t until he revealed his name that the parallels to Paradise Lost and Lucifer himself would become apparent.

The name Orion is Greek for “rising in the sky or dawn itself”, which bears a strikingly familiar tone to Lucifer, which means “light bringer”. As the episode progresses we learn that he not only was trapped in Purgatory for a while (literal Fallen Angel) but also broke ranks in order to fight the fight the other angels refused to – which is an almost identical origin story to Lucifer himself breaking ranks. Additionally, when Abbie begins asking questions about God to Orion, he seems noticeably peeved and/or disinterested.

Abbie: “If you cant trust an angel who can you trust?”

Ichabod : “Lucifer was an angel”

With Ichabod ’s mention of Lucifer – and later apocrypha references to Orion – we know that he ISN’T Lucifer; but the parallels were still important to set up. Orion is revealed to be a harbinger of disaster. Though rather than try to avert it, he causes it in his zealous quest to purge any signs of evil and whatever it touched. In fact, his comments about the first born of Egypt, Sodom and Gomorra, and other disasters seems to place him as the re-imagined Angel of Death. So it’s only fitting that he’d have want a date with the Sleepy Hollow’s famed Horsemen of Death.

If Orion was truly defeated by the Horsemen of Death in Battle over 200 years ago – and subsequently placed in Purgatory – then that really gives an inkling into their respective power levels – as well as makes me miss The Kindred. Though Orion’s apparent power to absorb his enemies strengths with his halo is not only an ingeniously written power; but also quite frightening. Sure Ichabod destroyed; but what does that mean for everything else. Was this built up power released? Is Orion weaker? Can Orion just get another? With Orion still out there on a zealous quest – and Abby still possessing his charm – we will absolutely be seeing this Fallen Angel again.

Life Without The Role Of Witnesses:

With evil seemingly defeated – and everything a little TOO okay – we see how the crew begins to settle back into life, or rather try to. Jennie goes off to hit on the local bartender, while Hawley reveals it is actually Jennie whom he misses. Abbie on the other hand feels like she can actually focus on her life and career again – to which Ichabod asks about her settling down with a husband. Since the Pilot, we’ve seen Abbie as someone who doesn’t really get involved romantically with anyone. She doesn’t need a man; but will we ever get to see her find a romantic foil?

Speaking of romantic foils, Katrina and Ichabod’s post-witness life is much more complicated as the two take a break from their marriage. Katrina still feels guilty over Abraham becoming the Horsemen of Death and wishes to return him to his former self – even going as far as setting him free when Orion appears. Ichabod on the other hand has thrown himself more into the fight against evil – and even searches for it – as the reality of his situation is quite a bit to bear.

Paradise Lost Katrina Sleepy HollowKatrina constantly uses guilt and their marriage to force Ichabod into siding with her on tough subjects –ie: Henry, Abraham, baby Moloch, etc. She always asks for him to trust her, yet she shows him very little trust to make the right decision. I desperately want Katrina to become a fuller character, and this episode definitely started to set up some of her greater powers; but she still remains the ‘witch who can’t see clearly’. We got this literally last season when Henry’s spell blinder her to Baby Moloch; and see it again as she begs for Abraham’s salvation. She feels the evil is what made him do unspeakable things and that his humanity returning will fix it. Though if Abraham still harbors resentment in his heart for Ichabod, no amount of humanity will save him. Whatever becomes of Ichabod and Katrina, we’ll have to see; but I for one am interested in seeing them try to ‘date’ and kindle that romance anew since all attempts to ‘pick up where they left off’ have fallen flat.

Death In Sleepy Hollow – The Horsemen Runs Free:

As incredible as many of the characters on this show are, let’s face it: Sleepy Hollow isn’t Sleepy Hollow without Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horsemen. As the two members of the original tales/myths of Sleepy Hollow, these two have to be around for the show itself. We knew that I’ve already spoken about how Katrina sees Abraham’s humanity; yet Ichabod sees fury and rage as the only parts of Abraham’s humanity still intact. The deciding factors will come in the following weeks as we see if Katrina can indeed free him from the mantle of Death as well as if Abraham will refrain from killing during that time.

Though will this remove the Horsemen once and for all – or at least the Headless part? I feel like whatever spell this is has to do with the return of the Kindred – since he does possess Abraham’s head. Does that head – and thus the Kindred – represent the remaining good in Abraham. This could additionally explain why the Kindred fought to save Abbie and Crane in their first duel. Will the two pairs reunited save Abraham soul, or just make the evil take over completely? We’ll have to wait to find out; but there are a few other things we’ll need more clarification on first.

Irving Lives & Other Loose Ends:

HE’S ALIVE!!!!!!!! Irving is alive; but how? Well perhaps Henry summoned him back since he would gain possession of his soul upon his death. Though speaking of which, where is he? Henry is missing and when we last saw him he killed whom he thought to be his father – Moloch. Right now, Henry is probably doing some soul searching and figuring out his next move – as well as which direction it falls in. Will we see a redeemed Henry fighting for good now with his real parents, or will he still wage against them?

Then again, Irving could have just escaped Purgatory. As we learned from Orion, Moloch’s death was followed by a massive earthquake that not only free Orion but also many other souls trapped in Purgatory. Was Irving one of these souls to be freed; and who else was freed? Will we see Andy Brooks (John Cho’s character) return as well in the coming season?

Orion vs Headless Horsemen Sleepy Hollow

Misc Revelations:

  • Ichabod can be seen brandishing the same enchanted crossbow he used in the midseason finale.
  • It turns out that the title of “Witness” simply means to witness and not take part in the battle. Abbie and Ichabod ’s decision to fight against evil is what Orion finds so intriguing about them – those who will fight against their role, much like he has. Though with Ichabod being connected to Katrina – a witch – he has been tainted, which is why he sees Abbie as the purer of the two.
  • Despite the Crane’s pleas and hesitation to kill Abraham, Abbie still sees him as the headless monster that killed her mentor Sheriff Corbin.
  • Katrina’s recollection of the midseason finale is a little off where she attributes Henry’s slaying of Moloch to him saving her. While Moloch did command Henry to kill Katrina first, Ichabod begged Henry to kill him first instead, which of course led to Henry slaying Moloch. Henry slayed Moloch for his own reasons, not to primarily ‘save’ anyone.

God, I’m so happy Sleepy Hollow is back. Though I couldn’t help but feel very uneasy about a coming massive twist. Sure there wasn’t a huge unexpected twist in the midseason finale – since we knew Henry would be redeemed – but that’s because it was only midseason. Sleepy Hollow threw us a massive curveball at the full season finale last time; and I’m sure there’ll be another big one this season as well. So what is it? Are they all actually in Purgatory right now? WHAT?!?!?!

I don’t know what; but I’m sure as hell excited to find out. So stay tuned here for closer looks at each episode; and if you like Podcasts, check out the official Sleepy Hollow SleepyCast over at The Nerdist!

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