Sleepy Hollow: Blood From a Stone – Acceptance (Recap/Review)

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Last week’s episode had Molly stepping in to save Ichabod from his overwhelming despair, and a noose, while this episode of Sleepy Hollow “Blood From a Stone” gets back to the main storyline in this season. Malcolm Dreyfuss and his search for those artifacts is the focus in this segment.

Peripherally, we have Diana accepting that Molly is the new witness after learning that her little one may not have to battle the evil demons at all. The path that Abbie Mills’ replacement takes is still all up to her.

Jobe, the demon who struck fear into the hearts of Jake and Alex, is not the big bad everyone assumed he was. Early in this episode, after the demon kills the conman preacher and takes his stone, another more powerful creature turns up and takes Jobe out with minimal effort.

Speaking a bit of latin defeats Malcolm’s buddy easily and the artifact now belongs to Ansel. “Blood From a Stone” gives us a bit of backstory on Dreyfuss and his obsession with collecting all the stones.

It seems that Ansel, Malcolm’s old business partner was “the face” of the company that Dreyfuss created. People ignored the shy genius with the bad haircut and instead gave all the credit to his partner.

Malcolm struck a drunken deal with Jobe; send Ansel to hell in return for all the credit and Dreyfuss’ soul.  Malcolm’s collection of the stones was all about cheating Jobe out of collecting on their deal. When the last artifact is collected Dreyfuss will become immortal.

Ansel spent in time in Hell working on a way out. He arrives to exact revenge on his former business partner by killing him and destroying their old company.

Apart from this demon heavy tale, there is a peripheral plot line which features Jake and his massive crush on Jennifer Mills. He actually “pays” Alex to put in a good word with their new team member.

The big reveal in this episode is that the broken bit of rock that Malcolm, and now Ansel, want to put back together is the Philosophers Stone. Ansel wants to erase his pain and become immortal while a terrified Malcolm is also after the everlasting life carrot so he can cheat on selling his soul.

There is one piece missing and that can be found back at Crane’s old stomping grounds; Sleepy Hollow.

Ansel is defeated as part of a team effort. Alex and Jake help Jenny to find a latin spell which will counteract the pissed of business partner’s magic. Mills arrives in the nick of time and neutralizes Ansel.

His reaction is to grab a tube of greek fire in order to burn everyone to a cinder. Crane throws a knife into the new demon and kills him. Ansel drops the tube of fire and Diana leaps into action and catches the glass full of internal fire before it breaks.

In all the confusion, Dreyfuss escapes. Later, Diana explains to Molly about being a witness and Mills, Alex and Jake realize that the last bit of the Philosophers Stone is in Sleepy Hollow.

It looks like the series will be shifting back to where things all began for Crane and his cronies.  It will be interesting to see if this move will bring Molly closer to being a witness and what other ghosts from season’s past will reappear.

As mentioned before, it seems like the show is taking the one stop forward two steps back approach to season four. The fate of Molly and just how she will fill in for Abbie Mills remains to be seen.

The theme of this week’s episode was acceptance. Diana accepting her daughter’s role in Ichabod’s quest and the new team members accepting their own place on Crane’s team, along with Jenny.

Sleepy Hollow airs Fridays on FOX.

 

Cast:

 

Guest starring Kamar de los Reyes as Jobe, Jessejames Locorriere as Preacher and Bjorn DuPaty as Ansel. 

Agents of SHIELD: Hot Potato Soup – Raising Koenig (Review)

MING-NA WEN

At long last Agents of SHIELD in “Hot Potato Soup” bring back the Koenig’s and allows the agents to work out that May has been replaced with a Life Model Decoy, aka LMD. It took Simmons to remember that Radcliffe did a complete brain scan of May when she was affected by the Darkhold “ghosts” earlier in the season.

Last week, Phil revealed that he gave the book to Billy as he is good at making things disappear. This week sees three of the Koenig’s who were all “raised” with LT Koenig (played by the brilliant Artemis Pebdani) who rules them all.

(It is all too tempting to paraphrase Tolkien here: One Koenig to rule them all, One Koenig to find them, One Koenig to bring them all, and in SHIELD  bind them. Sorry…)

The Koenig storyline was interesting and the introduction of LT gave the show a strong, and powerful, female slant. Simmons, who works out the May issue, May the LMD, Aida, Quake and finally LT are all uber capable.

ARTEMIS PEBDANI
LT Koenig ruling and binding them all…

On a sidenote: Pebdani must be super busy right now. Playing Linda on FOX’s Son of Zorn and nipping in quickly to play the “leader of the Koenig’s” on ABC. She manages to pull off both roles effortlessly and has become  a personal favorite.

This episode of Agents of SHIELD was impressive in terms of the LMD intricacy of plot and how each one empathizes with their original host. May, commiserating with Coulson while simultaneously trying to shoot him, and Radcliffe’s baiting of Fitz where the LMD tries to pull a Holden on him were highlights of the season.

The Koenig’s manage to help out to a degree but then blow it by giving the Darkhold to the wrong person. By the end of the episode the book has been lost, May is still MIA and The Superior believes, mistakenly, that Phil Coulson is behind all the issues in the Marvel-verse.

“Hot Potato Soup” had its fair share of laughs. The whole “who took my puppy” gag which prefaced Radcliffe’s realization that the Koenig they had in custody was the wrong one was truly funny.

Patton Oswalt killed it in this episode. Playing three versions of his character effortlessly and making each one funny, tough and “special.” The Quake crush was hysterical and it was fun to see Oswalt raising a little Koenig.

CHLOE BENNET
Agent Quake

(Sidenote: Loved the opening scene in the arcade and the self balancing hoverboards. The sequence then turning into a brief shoot em up with the Russian baddies being confused about their target was the perfect followup.)

The May LMD storyline actually had us feeling sad for the fake May and the LMD Radcliffe was revealing, unlike’s Agent May’s “clone,” it knew it was not the “real deal.” This storyline just gets better and better. The fake Holden even knows about Fitz’s problems with daddy…

Agents of SHIELD airs Tuesdays on ABC.

CAST:

Guest starring Patton Oswalt as Sam/Billy/Thurston Koenig, Artemis Pebdani as LT Koenig, John Pyper-Ferguson as Terence Shockley and Zach McGowan as The Superior.

Sleepy Hollow: The People v. Ichabod Crane – Molly Saves the Day (Review)

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Sleepy Hollow “The People v. Ichabod Crane” is centered around a demonic monster whose powers take the guilt of a chosen subject and use it against them.  A despair monster created to push their victim’s to kill themselves.

The black substance that attacked Crane in last week’s episode turns out to be the device by which the victim is captured. Crane is found, later in the episode, by Jenny and Diana, in a cocoon. He is held here while the drama plays out in his head.

Diana and Jenny are  becoming almost a permanent team, as are Alex and Jake who have a close call with Jobe. The episode’s highpoint was the reappearance of Kiwi actor extraordinaire John Noble as Henry Parrish.

In all honesty, this was a slow paced and somewhat boring episode. Any “courtroom” debate, whether it be of Crane’s own guilt or not, is going to drag. It was Noble’s interaction with Mison’s character that kept the entire thing from slipping into a sleep inducing event.

The further bonding of Jenny and Diana was interesting, but it really only served to solidify their partnership and to reveal Thomas’ Marine background, “Simper Gumby!”

Sleepy Hollow uses this episode to show Crane’s deep guilt over those he cannot save, on top of his guilt at losing Abbie. It also solidifies the bond between Ichabod and Molly, who saves him in the end from the despair monster.

Alex appears to be getting caught up in Jake’s enthusiastic acceptance of Crane and his mission. She may be the more pragmatic of the two but even Jobe’s disintegration of the Smithsonian guard does little to dampen her newfound ardor.

The trial of Crane was easily the most lackluster bit of the episode.  Even the saving of Ichabod was anticlimactic. Each episode so far has put Diana in the role of reluctant acceptance of Molly’s fate. Partnering her with Jenny has pretty much guaranteed that Agent Thomas was going to cave in sooner or later.

Little is seen of Dreyfuss, although his personal boogeyman and minion makes his presence very well known in this episode. We do know that Dreyfuss’ plans are on schedule and that things will become very busy for Crane and his little cadre of followers.

The show is not the same without Abbie Mills and that is probably a good thing. Although it would be nice if the former witness was allowed to return sometime in the near future. If the grown cop could be disposed of after three seasons a child surely will not last long at all.

Diana may well step in for Molly, as Jenny has for her sister, but it will not be the same. (To be fair, Thomas feels like a Mills clone sans the witness role.)

Sleepy Hollow airs Fridays on FOX.

Cast:

Guest starring John Noble as Henry Parrish, Kamar de los Reyes as Jobe and Onira Tares as Grace Dixon.

Agents of SHIELD: Wake Up – Melinda May (Review)

MALLORY JANSEN

Agents of SHIELD “Wake Up” answers a few questions while posing at least one more.  Will the Melinda May LMD (Life Model Decoy) somehow try to rescue the real Agent May? There is one more question, though, that begs answering…How long has Talbot been in Senator Nadeen’s camp and is he the other LMD that Radcliffe refers to?

The LMD storyline is very good. The camera work on the show has been concreting on odd angle closeups of the main players. Mallory Jansen as Aida has gone from being coldly pleasing to fairly sinister with those almost extreme zoom shots of her eyes looking pretty darned scary.

Kudos are in order for the fight scenes between May and Aida. The long running fight between the android and the agent were convincing and exciting to watch. Well done.

On top of the keeping May calm via those programmed fights with her captor, in her mind,  (which, incidentally, the agent keeps getting better at…) there was the Fitzsimmons reveal.

In the previous episode Fitz is seen talking to the Aida head and, apparently, checking the system out after being told to leave it alone. This week, Simmons catches Fitz out and accuses him of being obsessed with the robot.

She is wrong. Fitz is obsessed but with investigating his “friend” Radcliffe. He has suspected the not-so good doctor for some time. The end result of his work is that Holden is arrested and placed in holding. (See what we did there?)

It is interesting to note that in this episode, like the previous one, agents are shown acting oddly. This keeps the viewer guessing about just who the other LMD actually is. Mack and Yo-Yo, with their moment being spoiled by his rushing off and not participating in the mission.

Fitz with his apparent preoccupation with Aida’s severed head, Daisy with her odd reactions to things and so on. Even Phil is not acting “normally.” The big surprise, although not really as Talbot has always been a treacherous character, was the general being a lapdog to Ellen Nadeer, the woman who “killed” her own brother.

It does seem rather odd that Coulson missed this one. But then the operational head of SHIELD has been acting odd lately. His fixation on Melinda May and her cultivation of same, is also out of character. The two have always been close, but this close?

Another reveal had to do with May getting the nickname of “The cavalry.” She apparently rescued a young Daisy from her mother…

Fitz arresting Radcliffe and being all bad-arsed about it was brilliant. Apparently the addition of all that bearded scruff has allowed Leo to become a tougher, and rougher, agent.

Hopefully, the LMD May will help rescue the real one and Talbot will turn out to be another android clone. After all, the Holden that Fitz shot was yet another LMD. It seems that Radcliffe has been a very busy little villain…

Agents of SHIELD airs Tuesdays on ABC.

CAST:

 

Sleepy Hollow: Heads of State – Madame President? (Review)

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Heading back to Ichabod Crane and Sleepy Hollow for “Heads of State” several things immediately required a deeper look. Firstly, there is the question of “Madame President” (the head of state almost assassinated by the returning Headless Horseman).

Were the quartet of creators – Roberto OrciAlex KurtzmanPhillip IscoveLen Wiseman, and the episode’s writer (Raven Metzner) being wildly optimistic when penning this particular storyline? Was this a sly dig at the new president, or were they just having a little fun? (Answers on a postcard please, or in the comments section below. Please and thank you.)

The issues of a female president in danger aside, other things that require answers in the series, and not just this episode,  include whether or not Oona Yaffe (who plays Molly)  is the same kid in that catchy Google Pixel advert “Whoo-ha, whoo-ha,” and if the Headless Horseman will be played by the same actor as before.

Looking past this week’s episode at the previews of coming attractions, as it were, there will be at least one familiar face cropping up in the guise of the brilliant Aussie actor John Noble. The Fringe star previously appeared in the first two seasons of Sleepy Hollow.

Appearing in the last two episodes of season one as Henry Parrish (Ichabod’s son)  and then being expunged at the end of season two. The revenge-bent offspring of Crane and his wife Katrina (played by Katia Winter) made the second season a “good one.” 

The one thing that season three missed terribly was the dramatic skills of Mr. Noble. It appears, as mentioned in our review of last week’s show, the series is definitely going backwards as it moves forward. Crane may well be in the nation’s capital chasing down a newish threat, but the opponents that he will be facing are from the first two seasons.

Although, Dreyfuss is a new face/entity he is using at least two threats who will be familiar to both Crane and the audience. Killing off Abbie Mills, and keeping her sister Jenny around while bringing back some of the better foes from earlier seasons feels like a last ditch attempt to keep the ratings high.

Jeremy Owens played the decapitated nemesis of Crane before, although he did not have too much in the way of dialogue until Parrish heated things up in season two. Once Owens got back a head that did more than growl and make threatening noises, the headless villain became more… human.

Things are slowly changing in Crane’s new world in D.C. as he gets his own flat (apartment) and his team is slowing gaining a sort of cohesion. Alex is still a tad skeptical, despite proving that, if nothing else, Ichabod is a time traveler.

Dreyfuss’s motives are still unclear. So too is his voluntary sharing of the previously believed lost Banneker “city plans” for the capital. (This storyline relies on the urban legend of Banneker’s photographic memory enabling him to reconstruct L’Enfant’s plans for the city.)

It is all, apparently, a trap that Dreyfuss is setting for Crane and his compatriots. However, at the end of the episode, inside the new apartment’s tiny “walk-in” closet, a bit of black goo attacks Ichabod…

Season four has been surprisingly good. After the death of Abbie Mills, this iteration of Sleepy Hollow needed to pull a rabbit out of its hat to keep up the pace. (Although to be fair, after season three, anything would have been an improvement…)

Molly Thomas has not yet had to do any “witness” type task and Crane has not yet revealed to her mother that she is the new partner to replace Abbie.  This will not be an easy thing for Diana to come to grips with, despite her slow acceptance of demons and witches.

Sleepy Hollow airs Fridays on FOX. Tune in and catch the brilliant John Noble and see who the new Headless Horseman will be.

Cast:

Guest starring Edwin Hodge as Benjamin Banneker.