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Sleepy Hollow S01E01: "Pilot"


Yesterday I recommended that you all watch Sleepy Hollow, in all of its insane, supernatural occurrences-loving, magic Bible-ing, George Washington cameo-ing glory. And now that you have, let's talk about it. And feel free to take a quick bathroom break or grab a snack, because this review is a little longer than usual—there was a ton of information thrown at us in the pilot. Thankfully, despite only having 46 minutes to set up a mythology-heavy series, it did not disappoint. So let's get to it!

In this bastardized adaptation of Washington Irving's "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," Ichabod Crane is a soldier in George Washington's army during the American Revolutionary War. He's a sarcastic hunk, which could be a nice change of pace from the original character, who was a bit awkward and jittery—I'll allow it! In the opening scene, Ichabod beheaded a masked opponent with a bow on his hand (which we knew was important because the camera lingered on it) while kind of simultaneously being fatally sliced and diced himself by the soldier's broad axe. Then we fast-forwarded to the present day, where Ichabod—who we'd just watched die—woke up in a cave after a 250-year dirt nap, unaware that any time had passed at all. The normal time-travel confusion happened, of course, as Ichabod was perplexed by the existence of a paved road. I've never understood why TV shows and films constantly use this idea, because there are hundreds of other things that'd be more confusing than asphalt to someone who just finished a really long power nap. Like the semi truck that narrowly missed flattening our boy Ichabod before he was clipped by a compact. But, you know, roads. 

While Ichabod pondered pavement, we got our first glimpse of his modern-day co-star, Lieutenant Abbie Mills, who was enjoying a late-night snack with the local Sheriff and talking about how she couldn't wait to start her FBI schooling (yeah, we all knew she wasn't actually going to join the FBI after that conversation, right? That's the equivalent of saying "I'll be right back" in a horror film and then getting murdered). They received a call about some horses actin' all funny—small towns, am I right?—so of course they went to check it out, and of course the sheriff lost his head. The Headless Horseman: 1, Sleepy Hollow Townspeople: 0.


Officer John Cho brought Ichabod in for questioning because Ichabod looked awfully suspicious just running out into the middle of the road right after Officer John Cho fielded a call about an officer down—so obviously Ichabod totally had something to do with it. And also the the show needed a way to introduce Ichabod and Abbie. But Abbie wasn't able to identify Ichabod as the weirdo in a Revolutionary War costume who beheaded the Sheriff. Obviously that guy was wearing a red uniform, and he had a mark on his hand. Oddly enough, Abbie did not use the ol' "This guy has a head and the man I saw did not" line. I know it was dark, but if you can make out a bow branded onto the man's hand, wouldn't you take notice that he didn't have a head? I don't know how Abbie passed her FBI entrance exams if she's this bad at her job.

At this point in the episode, we finally started to get some answers, but not to life's important questions, like where has Tom Mison, the actor who plays Ichabod Crane, been hiding? He's quite enjoyable. Anyway, after some hilarious but inevitable nonsense involving Ichabod's response to modern technology, we learned that prior to the Revolutionary War, Ichabod was a studly history professor in England. When he came to America to fight the colonialists, he realized the tyrannical rule of the British and defected to George Washington's (magical) army. 

The scene was typical pilot fare in which one character talks a lot in order to flesh out the new world we're seeing for the first time, but this version wasn't as boring as it could have been. Ichabod's confusion over being strapped down for the polygraph test and the way he asked his interrogator if he knew George Washington added some life to the otherwise flat, but necessary, setup. 


Unfortunately for Ichabod, all his truth-telling and world-building got him was a one-way ticket to the looney bin—but first, Abbie thought it was a perfect time for a field trip to the cave Ichabod claimed to have just woken up in. For not believing Ichabod's story, Abbie sure was eager to check the place out. Once there, Ichabod found the magic Bible that was buried with him, and it conveniently contained a bookmark to the Book of Revelations, which obviously meant the Headless Horseman was actually one of the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse. In other words, shit just got real interesting, real fast. Ichabod continued to talk a lot to fill in holes in the show's backstory, explaining that George Washington once told him the Revolutionary War wasn't just about fighting for our freedom from the Brits, but that it was actually a fight to save the world. He was then charged with killing the Horseman, who is, in fact, Death. 

I actually dig the idea that America has some magical hidden history that we don't know about, because that well of stories is potentially endless. But I also majored in history in college, so the concept might be of more interest to me than it will be to the general public. It also has the potential to weigh down the action, or become too convoluted for its own good. Basing a show in such heavy mythology can definitely make for a great story—we saw that Teen Wolf's third season this summer—but it can also backfire if it's not done well or if it becomes too confusing (lookin' at you, Season 4 of The Vampire Diaries!). I'll definitely be keeping my eye on this series for that very reason.

And speaking of mythology, soon after this bit of exposition by Ichabod, we learned that the reverend who was acting kind of shady throughout the episode was the same reverend who was present at Ichabod's death, and that he's also a witch/wizard/warlock. It's a shame he lost his head after putting up such a moderate effort against the Headless Horseman. After telling the Horseman he would never reveal where his noggin' was, of course. Headless Horseman: 2, Sleepy Hollow Townspeople: still 0. And I might be in the minority, but I rather liked the way the camera's POV was the same as that of the priest's head as it fell to the ground. Felt like something Breaking Bad would do.


Despite the fact Ichabod was with Abbie at the time of the Reverend's death, Abbie's new boss still wanted him locked up in the looney-bin—which is kind of unfair, if you ask me. But then Ichabod followed the bird that he first spotted in the beginning of the episode and it led him to the grave of his wife, Katrina, so maybe he deserves to be locked up for chasing birds. Jury's still out.

It was at this point that Abbie finally had enough of Ichabod's nonsense, and decided to call it a day. But in the middle of their first fight, Ichabod was able to deduce that something had happened to Abbie in the past and determine that she might just believe his real story. She tried to deny it, of course, but we all know that those who protest too much are only trying to convince themselves of lies. We found out this was indeed the case, and that Abbie and her sister had experienced something supernatural in the woods near where the Horseman died, but had been told she was crazy all her life, so she started to believe it after awhile. Once she broke into the Sheriff's office and found that he had been doing a little paranormal investigating on the side, she finally accepted what we knew forever ago: This series is insane, but Ichabod isn't. 


At some point Ichabod had to go to the crazy house, but mostly so he could be rescued by Abbie later on. While he slept (I don't know how he was tired after having taken a 250-year nap, but okayyyy), Katrina the Wife We Thought Was Dead showed up to visit, and it turned out that she was really just trapped in another dimension or something. Katrina really was/is a witch, and her body was never buried in the grave that the little birdie led Ichabod to. It's actually the resting place of the Horseman's head. 

Thankfully Katrina talked a lot and filled in the remaining gaps in the story, like about how Ichabod came back (his bloodline merged with the Horseman's when Ichabod and the Horseman died, and when someone brought the Horseman back from the dead, that person also raised Ichabod), and about the magical component of the show. She also set up the series' entire underlying story when she told Ichabod that if the Horseman reclaimed his skull he would be whole again, and then "three more will come." I assume she meant the other three Horseman of the Apocalypse, but—and I don't know much when it comes to the Bible, so someone please correct me if I'm wrong—isn't Death the final Horseman? Shouldn't War, Famine, and Pestilence (or Conquest, as it's also been translated) have come first? 


Anyway, as it turned out, Officer John Cho was responsible—or at least working with someone who was responsible—for raising the Horseman (bad John Cho! Evil John Cho!), and of course Abbie unknowingly told him exactly where the Horseman's skull was located when she called him for help. I really should have seen this one coming, but I didn't figure it out until he walked into his apartment; I must be slipping in my old age. Anyway, the Horseman came to collect his head—with a shotgun, because that's how he rolls—and there was a pretty sweet cemetery shootout. In the end, Officer John Cho lost (and died) and the Horseman didn't get his head. 

At this point, it's kind of hard to see how each episode of Sleepy Hollow might tackle a case of the week (as set up by the files Abbie found in the Sheriff's office) while also fighting off the Headless Horseman and squeezing in flashbacks to the 1700s to teach us about the magical secret history of the United States, but it sure will be interesting to watch it try. 



NOTES

Decapitations this week: 2... the Sheriff and the Reverend

Things that confused Ichabod this week: roads, cars, the presence of a Starbucks on every block, a black female detective, polygraph machines, cameras, car windows, ladies wearing trousers, and flashlights.

– I'm thinking of calling the Headless Horseman Steve. I feel like he ought to have a name. And because Headless Horseman is a pain in the ass to type over and over again.

– Do you think we'll ever get to see Ichabod in jeans? I suppose that would probably take away some of his allure.

– On a scale from 1 to 10, where does Hearththrob Ichabod Crane rate for you?

What did you think of the premiere? Will you tune in for next week's episode?

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I finally started to watch this, and having sth that can fill the void of Haven (it started of pretty boring this season, unfortunately) made my day.. Ichabod, rating? we do not have a proper scaling system for that;)) this is a great, great show!
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I know this is really stupid / childish, but Ichabod's name is really fun to say. It's pronounced like, 'Ick! A bod!' and I laugh my head off every time someone says it. :)
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I just got around to watching it and enjoyed it quite a lot. The only part I didn't like, was the way the police treated Ichabod. After being exonerated they just shipped him to the asylum. He wasn't a danger to anyone, that just seemed rude. Plus, i would guess that if a sheriff from a small town manages to get herself admitted to the FBI she would be well respected.
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Only last night did I decide to watch Sleepy Hollow.
I'd been putting it off because on paper this show shouldn't work, but I found myself loving every moment of it. Likeable characters, compelling story, the story is a lot deeper than at first glance, it doesn't take itself too seriously, chemistry between Abbie and Ichabod (Ichabbie?). Overall it was just a complete pleasure to watch. I'm so happy I finally have a good Monday drama to watch!

Oh and Hearththrob Ichabod Crane rates an 11 for me!
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First off, I love everything about this review! I too majored in history in college so I get all of the historical references and can make some logical assumptions/connections/logical leaps about other history things. Second, I am a huge fan of Tim Burton's movie "Sleepy Hollow" so tuning in to this show was a no-brainer for me. The show is quite awesome to say the least. Even if it ends up being a case-of-the-week show, the possibilities for storylines/Ichabod 21st Century weirdness are endless and they would all be good. There are too many things to expound on individually, but I will answer your questions posed at the end of the article Kaitlin...

– Do you think we'll ever get to see Ichabod in jeans? I suppose that would probably take away some of his allure.= Truly it would, but they'll have to address the idea of his wardrobe soon, I mean he only has one set of 18th Century garb and it's not looking in such great condition.
– On a scale from 1 to 10, where does Heartthrob Ichabod Crane rate for you? I wasn't thinking about this when watching the episode but now that you ask, I'd say 9. He's not the absolutely most attractive person in the world, but his eyes and accent do give some points.
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I think there are A LOT of things to like. Strictly speaking, as a pilot, it's great. The premise of the show is laid out and the basic rules are established. The main characters are introduced, their back stories filled in and their relationship/chemistry with each other show...and it's all done without needless exposition so often found in other pilots where people have conversations for no other reason than to fill in the viewers. The advantage here is that all of the explanations given between the characters is necessary because they don't know any more than we do. Bravo.

Half way through, I got a 'Once Upon a Time' vibe and was wondering whether it would suffer the same fatal flaw of misusing it's source material, move things along too quickly and then run out of steam. Then, they got into the meat of the lore of the Horseman. This is less legends and fairy tails as it is 'Supernatural' meets The Bible. After checking out the architects behind it, I'm not too worried about the story telling part. Between Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci (Fringe & Star Trek reboots) and Len Wiseman (Underworld)...I think they're in good hands.

On a personal note, while the chemistry between Nicole Beharie and Tom Mison by itself looks to hold much promise, I'm likely to give this show every opportunity for success because it's the first time in my life time that I've EVER seen a black woman as a lead character on a "Big Four" TV series (that wasn't produced by Bill Cosby). Though I have since been introduced to the horribly titled 'Scandal'...so make that two in my lifetime.
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Reply to Notes:
1. The farmer was decapitated, John Cho, and the horseman's decapitation initiated it all, so I'm counting 5, not 2.
Side note, this is not something in my life I'd ever thought I'd be keeping track of...
2. One more to add to the list: the modern American pronunciation of "lieutenant"
3. Steve is good. You could try a dumb pun, like Headrick or Cappy...
4. Ichabod could wear anything or nothing at all, and he'd still look amazing.
5. That man is off the charts HOT. 100! :)

My own thoughts: I wasn't raised Christian, but I've researched Wicca (and persecution related to it) and I like they are both included in the folklore of this show. I love seeing a black female lead, I just hope she gets tougher in future episodes, I would love to see her kick some a**. I love John Cho, so I was sad to see him offed so soon, but I suppose he could return for a flashback. And how weird (but great) to see Orlando Jones in a serious role! If he drinks a 7Up in a future episode, I will never stop laughing. :)
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Update: JohnCho wasn't decapitated. He was "Pez'd". My bad. :)
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It is a good pilot, well paced and exciting but Under the Doom pilot was just as good so I still have reservation. I do hope it will continue to be good.
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I absolutely love this show, its great escapism, I will stick with this one, its a keeper
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I actually think they played the time-travel pretty well. Ichabod wasn't an idiot lost in the modern world. He was curious, but accepted explanations. And none of this was played for cheap laughs.
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This show tried too hard to be funny for my taste.
Honestly, I don't know what I expected but I expected it to be better. I am a big fan of serialised television and after watching the pilot, it just felt like the show tried to set up heavy mythology - but failed! :-(
Also, being a huge "Fringe" fan and just having learned that John Noble will be joining this show, I am worried. I adore John Noble but I am yet to be convinced that this show is worthy of him. I'll keep watching but I won't be expecting great things from "Sleepy Hollow". The only impressive thing about the pilot was the directing, the performance from Tom Mison and "The Rolling Stones".

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Although I would have loved it if Clancy Brown had been a regular on the show, I found it funny that The "Kurgan" was decapitated once again.
There can be only one. :P
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Oh, right! The Kurgan! That's where I remember him from!
"I have something to say. It's better to burn out than to fade away!"
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I enjoyed it. The pale demon kinda looked like the wendigo from Hannibal
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Ha! I thought the same thing!
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This show is totally nuts and I like it mostly because I have a major crush on Ichabod. And also cause the show has potential, I mean the devil and the four horseman and george washington (flashbacks I don't think he will appear) all in the same sho. I do hope Abbie gets more interesting I don't know what but she lacks something.
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Yes, Abbie is as bland as it gets! I was really excited about an african-american female lead (About time! I hate white-washing.) but I was really disappointed with her character. There was nothing exciting or interesting about her and it looks like she will be taking a major backseat to Ichabod.
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She could be an awesome character I mean allegedly she was chosen by the FBI (so I guess she is smart), she is tough and good looking but why is she so bland? And yeah is refreshing seeing a female lead that isn't white as snow so... is kinda disappointing that she isn't living up to her potential.
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Yeah, I agree. I really hope that I'm wrong about her and that they give her some good material as the season progresses. Otherwise, if she remains as *exciting* as she was in the pilot they should get rid of her altogether as she'll just keep taking me out of the show.
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Depends on if you only include on screen decapitations, but there were 3 decapitations of townsfolk. Abbie found the farmer (minus head) before the Sheriff lost his head.
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Totally bonkers, but that's why I loved it. Can't wait for episode 2.
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Where is you imagination? I like the blacktop road scenes, every time. Imagine you woke up is some shitty set, confused, lost, hurt a little, and suddenly in the middle of the forest there was a brilliant, glassy, hovering, milky creation, sliding through the mists to no end. Your intuition would warn you to stay away and sure enough in a moment a super train from the future would ruin your hair-do. I'm sure it must seem similar to the historical folk. I'm just amazed that car didn't break his elbow. And if you'd watch closely - Abbie saw the Hessian very well, she just couldn't go around telling people he had no head. Is that something you'd do lightly? What are the odds it was just a dude in a good suit to give that impression?
But I agree. Where HAS Tom Mison been hiding? Know what? This show (I mean pilot) reminds me totally of Haven.
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I thought the premiere did well. And does do something for me like Grimm. It didn't put me in awe, but did make me want to come back and I can quickly see the show growing more and more on me.
-And while seeing Ichabod in jeans would be nice, can we please shoot for a haircut please.
-Sucks John Cho had was gone in the first episode.
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I do have one question: This is a fairly small town, right - so headless riding from John Cho's house to the cemetary...how long does it take? I mean, they unearthed a grave, usually that'd take...you know at least a few hours. Anyway, Ichabod, yes he's nice. I just really hope they can make the series work.
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I think you summed this episode perfectly, Kaitlin!
Handsome british out of time boy, mystery mixed with history, crazy ideas that don't hesitate to get even crazyer ... What fun !
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A very good start. Ridiculous without being silly.

They are certainly confident. 'A seven year period of tribulation'. Seven seasons. It seems unlikely that the premise can carry 7 full seasons, but if they do have seven seasonal arcs and a full show arc lined up, then I, for one, am looking forward to it. But I kind of doubt it.

Shame the Sheriff had to die. I would have liked to have seen more of Clancy Brown.

Officer Brooks on patrol in town hears that the sheriff has been killed in a barn outside of town, and immediately jumps out of his car and arrests the nearest homeless looking guy. WTF?

Roads because that would be the first clear indication he'd see that something was different.
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Actually, the Officer Brooks arresting Ichabod on sight makes sense...

If you take into account that he was working for the same side as the Horseman. He was probably aware the Horseman would rise that night (give-or-take) and that Ichabod would follow shortly. Either he knew Ichabod's face from a sketch, or just assumed "OK, all heck is breaking loose so my headless guy is probably awake. And THAT guy is wearing period clothing... let's capture him and take the heat off my headless guy"
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Actually She was in denial when she didn't say the murderer didn't have a head. She also thought they would think she is crazy, so it makes sense she didn't say anything
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Love it! I will be tuning in weekly for this show :) I recommend EVERYONE watch it :)
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Decapitations this week: 5! Death, Jimmy Oglebee, Sheriff, Priest, Officer Brooks. C'mon people, lets get this count right.
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Thank you! At least someone can count!
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I'm already loving this show! Those 4 white trees and the blurry demon monster thing gives me the heebie jeebies! And yes, please, can I have Ichabod? Where has this man been all this time? He's so hot! Sad that poor Sheriff Clancy Brown had to die. Also sad that poor John Cho had to die before explaining his evil ways. I can't wait to see what comes next week! How much do we love Headless Steve all decked out with ammo and guns, riding off into the sunrise with his machine gun? Oh yeah! Loving it!
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God dang it, CLANCY BROWN!!! Why, oh why?! It's a show about decapitations. DECAPITATIONS!!! C'mon.
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Decapitations this week: 3... the Sheriff and the Reverend and the Horseman.
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And now the headless horseman is using automatic weapons??!!! I don't think I can love this show anymore than I already do.

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I just want to say, for the record (you're recording this transcript right?) that I will watch this show even if it has 100 seasons. I will be buried in Sleepy Hollow and then return from the dead to finish out the rest of the series. I say all of this, after only watching the first 40 minutes of the show. It had everything. Everything! Streets ahead I say.
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I thought this was a great pilot and an overall lead-in to a promising show. The acting is great, we already know a lot about the rules and players in the big game/small town world we're introduced to, and there's a huge amount of potential for future stories, characters, and plot twists.

I am slightly worried about the mythology behind the show, in that the writers might feel a bit to free down the road in terms of what they pick and choose from Christian tradition/History/anything really. While so far things have been mostly concrete and thought out (there are two covens of witches so that explains magicking chains and raising people from the dead, and most of their references to the Bible at at least in the ballpark), there have already been a few things that rub me the wrong way.

First and foremost is the fact that they have already said "The Book of Revelations" at least three times. It is the Book of Revelation. Not Revelations. Now, I can understand how most people call it The Book of Revelations, and it's realistic that most people in everyday life would refer to it as such. However, Ichabod made this mistake in this episode when 1. he comes from a time when you'd expect people to get it right more often than getting it wrong, and 2. He's actually reading from the Book of Revelation. The words are at the top of the page. Unless of course General George Washington happened to own a misprinted, special magic addition of the Bible or something like. Anyway, I realize that this is a fairly minor issue, but it happens to be a pet peeve of mine.

Not a minor issue is the fact that (as many people have already pointed out), Death is the last horseman to show up, not the first. To be fair to the show, though, the first horseman does ride a white horse and carry a bow. This dude also rides out with a crown as a conqueror bent on conquest, which could very well be what the headless horseman/Steve is trying to do in the show. But, the first horseman in the Book of Revelation has been interpreted as being Conquest, Victory, the Antichrist, and even Jesus himself (though I doubt this is the direction the show is going, though that would be a shocking twist). It cannot be Death, because Death is specifically mentioned as the fourth horseman. So the show has taken two horsemen and oddly molded them into one. And again, since Ichabod actually had a Bible in his hand while he was coming to all these revelations (yep), this is more than a bit awkward.

I don't have as much an issue with the whole messing around with history implications that the pilot has, mostly because the existence of two powerful covens of witches creates a perfect reason for why history could/almost certainly has been rewritten for a very, very long time. What we read in history books could easily have been influenced by people who can summon chains out of thin air to aid them in battle. There are already real-life instances of history being dismembered, forgotten, and altered by its recorders and guardians. Washington Irving himself made up facts in his biographies of famous people (such as George Washington). And that's without the existence of secret societies of witches/warlocks possessing unknown powers, who could very well be capable of erasing/altering memories. So yeah, "Sleepy Hollow" can mess with actual history all it wants, as long as its own version of it is consistent.

This leaves the Bible/Christianity as still being the awkward link in the chain that is this newborn show. Sure, it's fine if the Christianity we're familiar with is not entirely accurate, and that in reality witches figure more into the battle between good and evil than we've been led to believe. And granted, it's not inconceivable if parts of the Bible have been misinterpreted/mistranslated, lost, and intentionally changed over time, thereby making the original message about witnesses trying to fight off Death by keeping him away from his head not as apparent as it had originally been. In fact, the Bible itself has undergone several changes/translations over time, with key words being changed from translation to translation, and even entire books and gospels being thrown out or reintroduced.

However, the Bible that the writers of the show seem to be getting most of their references from is the current Bible we know very well. This leaves us with two possibilities for the future of the show, both of which have their own problems. The first is that George Washington's Bible is very similar/identical to your average King James, or some common translation like it. If this is the case, then we have already seen that most of what you'll find in there is going to be entirely unhelpful. Already, the "truth" of the show is pulled from bits and pieces of scripture that is thoroughly unrecognizable from the original product. And the only way the characters can connect the "real" bits of scripture together is from what they already know and have seen. So effectively, the Bible as a source of information int heir fight against Death is useless.

The second possibility is that Washington's Bible is actually very different from what you'd normally find in your hotel room late at night when there's nothing good on television. It's possible that future exploration of this Bible reveals a Book of Revelation that conveniently lays out our heroes' battle with the headless horsemen in an understandable and recognizable way. In this version the first Horseman is actually named as Death, and the Forth Horseman is given some other name that is fearsome and worthy of a Third or Fourth Season finale. In fact, this "real" Book of Revelation could actually be called The Book of Revelations, which would turn a glaring instance of a personal pet peeve into a clever clue. It would almost be perfect.

I say "almost" because this path carries with it its own thorny bushes. Chief among them is the point of using the Bible in the show in the first place. The whole point of heavily referencing a Bible in a fictional show about supernatural happenings (you would think) is to feature something that a lot of people have read and are passionate about. You can draw from a source material that is familiar to most people, and if you do it right you can make people think differently about something they thought they already understood completely. But when you cast the actual Bible aside, and instead opt for your own constructed in-show version, then it just doesn't carry as much weight. Instead of searching for hours for a quote that eerily seems to speak to what's going on in something you've written thousands of years after the Bible was first compiled (or making a plot point in your show fit around something memorable in the Bible), you can just cut and slash through the Bible with no regard for context or whether certain sentences actually follow each other. It becomes a lot less meaningful.

So unless "Sleepy Hollow" suddenly changes it's story to better fit what actually goes on in the good book, the use of the Bible will be an issue for them, one way or another. Especially when you consider that the Book of Revelation is supposed to be a vision of events (symbolic as they may be) that are most certainly going to happen and can't be changed or averted. Ultimately, "Sleepy Hollow" has created for itself a set-up wherein it's protagonists are attempting to thwart the plans of God. Or at best they're following in the footsteps that God has ordained for them to travel, in which case neither their accomplishments nor their failures actually mean anything in the long run. A lot of people will die, but ultimately every last person will be Judged regardless of anything Death--or for that matter the Antichrist or Devil or whoever that creature in the mirror was--has to say about it.

Anyway, all of that digging through religious and philosophical issues aside, I am very excited for the potential that "Sleepy Hollow" has to offer. So far, it has created for itself a consistent environment in which believable characters must survive among supernatural enemies and allies, in an attempt to fend of the apocalypse. And while we've only seen less than an hour of this crazy world, it has done a much better job of making its characters, relationships, and dialogue far more believable than "Zero Hour" did. And though that's not saying much, it's something.
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If Network TV isn't going to go the way of "Mad Men"/"Breaking Bad"/"The Shield"/"Game Of Thrones"/Insert-Your-Own-Very-Quality-Cable-Series-Here, then I want it to go THIS way. More shows like "LOST" or "Sleepy Hollow" with a crazy premise that just plows on full steam ahead amidst the zaniness. "LOST" which tried to logically back up and explain everything (and did so reasonably successfully), and "Sleepy Hollow" which is going straight up insane. These shows are very watchable while "NCIS" puts me to sleep.
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Not the strongest debut ever, but entertaining enough. Will definitely be back to give it a real chance.

Also - funny how Ichabod crawled out of a grave all muddy and icky, and STAYED in that outfit all through the episode... I'de have thought the loony bin at least would have provided a clean set of scrubs, or some such.
Although in everybody's defence - the outfit DID seem to get CLEANER as the episode progressed... ;)
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Officer John Cho was the sole reason for me viewing. Sorry.
Also, its not Supernatural. That pilot was better.
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Great pilot! I love the concept and hope that it will live up to the expectations. I personally can't get enough of Ichabod's responses to all things modern.... ;-)
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That priest had some interesting binding powers, but he wasn't very good at using them. That kind of reminded me of Spawn. The mythologies have many similarities.
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This show is everything I have been asking for. I will def be watching every week. Until Fox messes it up or decides it's to good and cancels it like they so love to do.
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I never liked illogical shows, but, until now, Sleepy Hollow changed my mind.
Also, Tom Mison seems to be Fox's answer to CBS's Jonny Lee Miller.
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Premier held my interest. Excellent production work - love the overall look of it. Lotta exposition...but it was necessary and well-handled. As far as "Welcome to the 21st Century", Ichabod's an educated man...kind of bright...shouldn't take him long to adapt to the bells and whistles! Like the actress playing Abbie - attractive but not the usual sleek, glossy, smart-mouthed bimbo that TV abounds with! She plays the role as intuitive, pragmatic, resourceful, and open-minded. Now if the writing doesn't degenerate to soap-opera level...we just might have ourselves a show!
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Holy cow, look at that poll: 1100 liked the show , but only 32 disliked it.
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Enjoyed it-good pilot. Kinda like Grimm on horseback. Was surprised John Cho was killed off so quickly. Thought he would be a regular. I'm watching Abbie's new boss, cos he seems kinda shady. Only thing that bothered me was how insistent Abbie was at the beginning that she did not "see" the headless horseman. If she did, she should just admit to the possibility and not behave like pea brain Officer Linda in Under The Dome.
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I think it's completely reasonable and realistic that Abbie didn't say anything about the Horseman missing a head. The show didn't imply that she didn't see it, it implied that she was afraid and doubting her sanity and therefore chose not to say anything. However, I have major issues with the blandness of her character and I do agree with you on the "Linda from Under The Dome" comparison - spot on. I think that the character was poorly written and only serves as a tool of information about the town & 21st century for Ichabod. She has no personality and I think that's the reason why everyone is assuming that she didn't see that the guy was missing his head.
Badly written female lead - oh network TV, why do you keep doing this?
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I agree with the Grimm comparison, I think it does what Grimm is trying to do but does it much better. The mythology is much stronger on Sleepy Hollow where on Grimm it seems like they're making things up as they go along. Also Sleepy Hollow gave me a couple legitimate scares something which doesn't really happen with Grimm because I can't completely buy in to the mythology/premise, you never feel immeresed in that world.
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You ever experience people telling you that your crazy and try to lock you up. Then lets see how quick you are to tell people you saw a headless dude with a broad axe on the back of a horse decapitate a sheriff. Way to much is being made of her refusal to admit what she saw early on.
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Loved the show...the only thing i don't get is...if Ichabod must kill the horseman and he is linked to him, doesn't he die too??? That part was not clear yet...and like in the review mentioned...Death is as far as i know the last horseman..still awesome first episode...
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It appears there is no ''True Death'' in this show. Just eternal life, eternal torment and an ongoing battle between good and evil.
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For seven years at least.
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I really, really enjoyed this show. I don't know if it was the directing or the plot or maybe even filming in the same town but I got a really solid Fringe vibe from this show. Not only by the supernatural aspect of the show but also the humor and the visual aspect as well. Not sure if others feel this way as well but I hope it can turn out to be even half of what Fringe was. Will for sure keep watching and really pleasantly surprised.
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Clancy Brown loses his head yet again. When I saw his name on the credits, I got so excited, but he died 9 minutes into the show. I was so hoping that he would be a main supporting actor.
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Does anyone really die on this show? He'll pop up again. It's practically inevitable. His bloodline may have merged with the Horseman's too.
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There can be only ONE
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I loved the pilot, but the mirror thing at the end freaked me out. The show seems to have a lot of potential, so hopefully it won't dissapoint.
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What really impressed me about this pilot wasn't just the way they introduced us to this world, or the Steve action (ye ur right HH is long to type and Steve's kinda catchy) but the camerawork. You mentioned the POV for reverend's death but Len Wiseman did a great job directing and there were many shots that I jsut had to applaud, eg. the upside-down flip transition thingy into a flashback as the police car drove away, and the car door closing shot as Ichabod got into his very first front seat ride with Abby, and the way the camera snapped back when the reverend suddenly restrained Steve. There were quite a few more but that's just off the top of my head. Oh, my absolute fave shot tho was at the end of the pilot when Abby is looking into the mirror and the demon turns back and breaks the mirror and the camera kinda jumps which was super cool. Also great use of The Rolling Stones' Sympathy for the Devil almost coyingly "Please allow me to introduce myself..."
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Well, except for the title, the village name, and the character name of Icabod Crane this is a very different Sleepy Hollow! The pilot did almost every thing right. Got us off to a great start, lots of action, fantasy, and a cohesive back story that gets us all up to speed quickly. So, o.k., who wouldn't think a guy who claimed to be on a secret mission for George Washington was nuts? I find it hard to believe how quickly the horseman and Ichabod have adapted to modern conveniences like machine guns and and cars. You would think everything would seem to be witchcraft to them. Oh yeah, there are witches too! You would think someone would have commented on the way he was dressed. I guess seeing someone in period costume isn't all that unusual in Sleepy Hollow. I love it, can't wait to see more.
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I do love the irony of Ichabod being a spy for the Continental Army, especially since the ghost story in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" describes the hanging of Major John André, who was a British officer executed by the Continental Army as spy. And I believe George Washington was the general who oversaw his trial.

I suspect that Sleepy Hollow's show-writers are even bigger geeks (I say lovingly) than previously thought. I hope the show continues to incorporate interesting details alluding to or related to Irving's story and Revolutionary history.
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I thought it was weird too that Washington would give precisely such a mission to Ichabod. One has to question the choice.Unless Ichabod was a Mason in England already.
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I have to admit, they pulled a "Holy Shit" out of me when they made John Cho's head bend back 360 degrees. That was pretty crazy.

This show is so freaking crazy and I do believe I'm falling in love. I mean the Headless Horseman with an assault rifle, POVs from falling heads, the Revolutionary War as a magical plot point. The list goes on and on.
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Wonderfully insane, ambitious, and well paced. Definitely coming back for more of this. Easily a show that could have sucked pretty hard if it were reigned in.
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Hannibal is an NBC show. Excellent, but not Fox. The Following was Fox's serial killer show this year. It was definitely NOT excellent. In fact, part of the reason I have been so pleased by Sleepy Hollow is that I had a sneaking suspicion it was going to be as poorly done as The Following. So far, I'm happy to be wrong.
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The following was great in the beginning but anything with Kevin Bacon is made to fail. I have no idea why i remembered hannibal as 'being on fox'. youre right.
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I thought it would be lame, but I enjoyed it quite a bit, especially nice special effects.
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