‘Sleepy Hollow’ S2 mid-season premiere recap: Averting the Angel of Death

Orion is not your ordinary angel. (Photo credit: FOX via Twitter)


“Sleepy Hollow” came back with an intense episode full of delicious Ichabbie moments and some jaw-dropping bombshells. After weeks of anticipation and several Sleepy Head theories, we finally have some of the answers we’ve been waiting for. Ichabod and Abbie’s first encounter with the mysterious angel Orion has generated a whole new mythology for the series, which will be exciting to explore in the future. We also saw some greatly missed Ichabbie interaction as they struggle to find their purpose as civilians and Witnesses. The Cranes’ relationship is still as rocky as ever since Katrina insists on aiding Abraham. But most importantly, “Sleepy Hollow” saves the best for last and answers all of our prayers at the final minute when we see that Captain Frank Irving still lives. All in all, this was a fantastic episode. Let’s dive in!

“Paradise Lost” opens moments after Moloch’s destruction. Although Henry has disappeared, our fantastic foursome remain intact. Even Ichabod’s hair looks fabulous in the midst of this near apocalyptic demise. Once we see the gang has survived, we fast forward six weeks.

Ichabod and Abbie are shopping at the farmers’ market when Crane notices brimstone on an apple. He embarks on a very Sam and Dean-style inquiry which baffles the poor seller. (This #SuperSleepy moment really reminded me of the first time Castiel worked a case with Dean. He kept asking all the obvious and crazy sounding supernatural questions, so Dean had to reel him in. Ichabod’s moment is equally hilarious.) Abbie pulls Ichabod back for a second and calms him down. They are usually more subtle in their approach, especially with ignorantly blissful lay people who are totally unaware that the world is falling apart around them. However, Ichabod is completely on edge because he fears that “something supernatural is gestating.” They return to the archives, review the information he’s collected over the weeks, and have the first of many much needed wonderful Ichabbie conversations.

Ichabod has been keeping track of the rotten fruit and mutilated animals found at Wilcox Farms. Although Abbie has slowly been trying to think of a life beyond battling evil, Ichabod keeps her grounded in their task at hand. Something nasty is afoot. Besides, what are they to do if they are not battling evil? Abbie derailed her big Quantico plans and stayed behind to fight this war with Ichabod. She doesn’t even have a social life because she’s so focused on saving the world from eternal damnation. Crane is in an even worse position because he left his real life behind 250 years ago. If he is no longer a Witness, he needs to build a new life in the modern world, which is extra hard to do when his marriage is still on the rocks.

Abbie wonders if Ichabod’s findings could be the result of dark magic. She asks if they should reach out to Katrina for a magical assist. Nope! Ichabod prefers not to ask his wife for help. The Cranes are taking a break, so Ichabod has been crashing on a cot in the archives. Even Abbie thinks it’s crazy that he isn’t staying at “his” cabin, which isn’t really his to begin with, but still it has become his home. Ichabod tries looking on the bright side: “Solitude can be invigorating,” he claims. Um, sure, whatever make you feel better, buddy. Abbie still says what most of us are thinking: Katrina is spending more time with Abraham, the enemy, than with her own husband. Now that’s messed up.

You have to love the way Abbie is an awesome voice of reason. It makes her really relatable to us as an audience because we are right there with her. She has qualms about Katrina’s efforts to help Abraham because he’s a monster and a killer. Ichabod understands, but argues that he has also seen the humanity in Abraham. He tells Abbie, “Beneath the monster is a man.” Ichabod saw a glimpse of that troubled man in “Magnum Opus,” so he can understand Katrina’s perspective. Ichabod admits he will ask for Katrina’s help when they really need it, but he first he wants to be sure of what they’re dealing with.

Abbie and Crane continue their conversation as they investigate the farm for supernatural sightings. As they walk through the wooded terrain, they quiz each other on how they would move on with their lives if the Apocalypse were to be over with. Abbie insists that Crane has been using this mission as an escape from life. Crane quips back, noting that Abbie is not much different. It’s not like she’s settled down with a husband, err, not that she needs a man to make her life complete. Poor Crane means no offense, he’s just making a point.

It is really interesting how Ichabod keeps harping on Abbie’s lack of a love life. His epic romance is in shambles and he just wants his dear friend to find a bit of true love for herself. It’s sweet, yet strange. Is he trying to overcompensate for something? Is it a way of suppressing potential romantic inklings he may have for his partner? Die-hard Ichabbie shippers can only hope. For now, Crane is simply speaking as a pal who wants only the best for Abbie, and apparently the best includes a little bit of lovin’. By the end of this honest conversation, Ichabod admits that he does not know what his place in this world would be if he lost his life’s purpose as a Witness.

What a wonderful, candid, and real chat to have. Kudos to the Sleepy Writers and Raven Metzner (who penned this episode). They have done a great job of creating these types of personal and soul-searching conversations between Ichabbie. They by far have the best relationship on “Sleepy Hollow.” No matter what happens or whatever difference of opinion they may have, Ichabod and Abbie are united in a common goal and will always have each other’s backs. As we will soon find out.

Abbie and Ichabod discover of trio of lesser demons known as Davoli. They are trying to summon some sort of entity. As Team Witness attacks the demons, black winged Orion swoops into the barn with his badass halo blade and stops the demons. The creatures scatter and we get a Orion’s very interesting backstory.

Like Katrina, Orion has been trapped in Purgatory for two centuries and he escaped when Moloch opened the doors. Now Orion is on a mission to clean up Moloch’s mess and capture all of Purgatory’s evil-doing fugitives. Abbie is all on board with that plan, but Ichabod has his suspicions. When a call comes in from Katrina, the team splits up. Abbie watches over Orion, while Ichabod meets his wife at Abraham’s cell.

Before Crane’s arrival, Abraham and Katrina discuss his predicament. She genuinely wants to help and separate him from the mantle of Death. However, Abe argues that it is not so simple. He explains how he and the Horseman are one: “I am the horseman and the horseman is me.” But Katrina begs to differ. First of all, she feels responsible for pushing Abraham into darkness when she left him for Ichabod. She knows Abe’s jealousy caused this. Guilt aside, Katrina makes a valid point: without Moloch, Abraham is now a Horseman without an Apocalypse. So what’s the point of staying on the dark side? Abraham doesn’t want to hear it and asks to be left alone.

Crane arrives and Katrina tells him she has found a way to help Abraham, but Ichabod remains reluctant. Despite seeing a glimmer of humanity in his former friend, Abraham is now an abomination. So Katrina tries guilting her husband into doing what she wants. She says the Cranes’ love caused Abraham’s spiral into darkness, the least than can do is help him out. Ok, a lot of lovers have been scorned, but they all don’t turn to evil and choose the mantle of Death, so Katrina’s reaching and Ichabod doesn’t appreciate the manipulation. While the Cranes discuss Abraham’s future, Abbie gets to know Orion a little bit better.

In another totally relatable move, Abbie asks the angel all of the big questions. What is God really like? Orion says that name and gender do not apply to God and that is all he has to say about it. Orion admits that no matter how much he reveals, she will never be satisfied by the answers. So she lightens the line of questioning and asks about dinosaurs. They were before his time. Okay, so the angel isn’t very forthcoming, but did we really expect to get straight answers? Orion then goes on to tell her a bit of his personal history.

This badass angel broke ranks and left Heaven. He saw what was happening in the world and wanted to proactively fight evil. Judging by the chainmail clad ensemble, it seems like Orion may have been on earth around medieval times. Before getting trapped in Purgatory by Moloch, Orion was trying to take down all sorts of evil. Now that Moloch’s actions have released more evil, like the Davoli, onto this earth, Orion has made it his mission to vanquish them all. He then explains why it is so important to track down the Davoli.

Now that Moloch is gone, the Davoli are searching for a new master: Death. Orion is hunting the Horseman! Even better news: his kickass halo blade can get rid of the Horseman of Death. Abbie is all down for taking out Abraham. She tells Orion they have Death in custody and will take the angel to him.

Abbie touches base with Jenny to fill her in. Poor Jenny is all dolled up at the tavern waiting for Abbie to be her wing-woman and help her win over the cute bartender. Abbie feels terrible for bailing on their plans, but Jenny understands. Jenny calls Hawley to see if he can help. He brings a over an rocky egg that can locate demons. It’ll be really helpful once they figure out how to use it. Meanwhile, Abbie parts with Orion to join Ichabod and Katrina. Before he leaves, Orion gives her a mini halo blade charm. She can summon him with it and he can easily find her. (It’s a mini version of his weapon! Too cute!) Orion is very impressed with Abbie’s devotion and in return, our Witness is excited to have her own guardian angel. Unfortunately, everything is not as awesome as it seems.

Katrina explains that Orion is an angelic host and reveals his real history. George Washington came to Valley Forge for Orion. The angel faced Death and the Horseman won, so Moloch’s trapped Orion in Purgatory. Now Orion is out for revenge. He is not the trusting sweet warrior angel that Abbie thinks he is. Katrina fears for Abraham’s safety and flees to free him. She makes him promise not to kill anyone while she continues searching for a way to separate him from the mantle of Death. Abraham agrees and dashes off. Oh yeah, Orion is so pissed she let the Horseman go.

In another great scene, the camera spins around in a circle as Ichabod and Abbie disagree over Katrina’s plans for Abraham. Abbie still believes Orion has a point and Death needs to go. She tells Crane, “When we waver in our duty, monsters get loose and people die.” Nonetheless, Ichabod still does not trust the angel. He wants to research Orion before making a final decision.

Meanwhile, Jenny and Hawley are still trying to figure out how the rock works. As they try different things, Hawley admits to getting jealous over the bartender, Mike. (Sorry, but Hawley is a hot mess. They brought him in as a potential love interest for Abbie. Then we learn he has history with Jenny. So when Hawley was crushing on his ex’s sister, we all knew it wasn’t going to work. At least he’s settled on which sister he wants now. Guess Abbie was a fleeting infatuation, but it would be nice to see Jenny and Hawley have something real. Either way, Hawley as a character could’ve have been worked out better than this. What do you think?) Jenny lashes out at Hawley. He had his chance, they had something good, but just like everything else in life, when things get real, he busts it into pieces. That gives Hawley an idea and he smashes the egg open. They find a silver ball inside, which shows them that the Davoli are at the carriage house with the Headless Horseman. They tell Abbie and she summons Orion, so they can put an end to Death for good.

Once Abbie and Orion have set their plan into motion, Crane calls with scoop on the winged wonder. Based on the angel’s track-record, Orion arrives weeks before history’s greatest catastrophes, like the plague and Passover. Yikes! Is Orion there to bring on these horrifying events or to prevent them? They get the truth from Orion himself.

Orion seeks to rebuild world as paradise. He says evil has taken root in men’s hearts and it must be burnt out. The halo blade will give Headless’ power to Orion. As the Angel of Death, he will be given the power of judgement and carry out sentencing. He can cleanse humanity and bring about a golden age. Orion intends on killing Katrina too. But Abbie and Ichabod seem to be in the clear for now. Uh oh! Now the battle is really on.

In another classically epic “Sleepy Hollow” fight sequence, Orion and Headless duke it out. Ichabod arrives on the scene and joins Abbie in fighting off the demons. Suddenly, Orion’s halo blade boomerangs back from the sky and darts into Abraham’s back. The halo starts absorbing Death’s powers. Ichabbie needs to destroy the blade! So Abbie distracts Orion, while Ichabod hacks into the halo blade with an axe. She tries talking Orion out of it, saying it is not fair to destroy all that is good just for the sake of all that is bad. Orion must find another way, but he won’t have it. Luckily, Crane removes the halo blade from Death’s back and destroys it while Abbie shoots at Orion.

Who would’ve thought Ichabod and Abbie would be fighting to save the Headless Horseman? As Abbie says, “The enemy of my enemy is my ally.” Having failed his mission, Orion flies away. Will we see him again? Will Abbie ever dare to summon Orion in a supernatural jam? Is he all bad or can he be reformed? After all, Castiel changed a lot after hanging out with Sam and Dean. (Yes, more #SuperSleepy, can’t help it.)

Now for more of the juicy relationship stuff! Abraham comes so close to attacking Crane, but Katrina steps in and reminds him of the promise he made. Ichabod tells Abraham that this is his chance to be the hero he wanted to be. Abe stands down, but he will not be held captive until Katrina figures out how to save him. And with that, the Headless Horseman makes his exit…for now.

Once Abe has left, Ichabod has a heart-to-heart with Katrina. He is very disappointed with her. They share a life together and she used their marriage as a bargaining tool. That is NOT cool. He’s always believed in her, but when it comes to Abraham, Ichabod has his doubts. Henry is their son, so they cannot lose faith in him. But Abe just used to be their friend. Katrina cannot expect Ichabod to give the Horseman the benefit of doubt. Henry and Abraham are not the same, so guilt won’t work on Ichabod. He knows that Abe is driven by his pride, ego, and anger. Katrina needs to be more level-headed when dealing with Abe.

The Cranes realize how much has changed over their years apart. They have hit a rough patch and need to redefine their marriage. Katrina is eager to set things right and carry on as husband and wife, but Ichabod wants to take it slowly. Well, that explains their upcoming date night. Can’t wait to see how that works out.

When he’s done with Katrina, Crane apologizes to Abbie for siding with his wife. Abbie is also sorry for quickly putting her faith in Orion. They hope Orion takes ample time to recover before he returns to make his next move. Despite their disagreement, they both believe this was an important obstacle they faced. The Witnesses pushed each other and realized that their bond cannot be broken. No matter what happens, Ichabod and Abbie will be supportive and there for one another. To which Crane proudly quips, “Witness represent.” Adorable! There were so many fantastic Ichabbie moments in this episode.

Despite Orion’s shadiness, Abbie keeps his halo charm. Well, you can’t blame her. In a war against evil, it doesn’t hurt to have some angelic reinforcement, even if he is misguided. If Abbie is in a dire situation, Orion would most likely want to help her vanquish some more evil.

Max Brown did a fantastic job as Orion and we hope to see more of him. What do you think? Can Orion grow to be a reliable ally for Ichabbie? Will Orion enlist their help in the future? What was your first impression of Orion? How did you feel about Abbie’s interaction with the Angel? Any thoughts on Orion’s vessel? Could he be a historic figure who also had a pre-destined role to play in the battle of God and Evil?

Brace yourselves, Sleepy Heads. The final jaw-dropping moments of “Sleepy Hollow” left us equally elated and riddled with more questions because Irving lives! He enters a mini-mart, chugs some milk, grabs a snack and asks the clerk: is this heaven or hell? Irving learns he is still in Sleepy Hollow. And we are left gasping. Whoa!

We knew Irving would be back, but now we have a bunch of questions! Did Ichabbie & Co. bury Irving? Did Katrina cast some kind of preservation spell just in case a crazy supernatural miracle occurred? How did Irving return? Was he resurrected by God, an Angel, another Horseman, a demon, or some new supernatural creature? Why was he brought back? Is he here to serve whoever resurrected him? Is he now a vessel for a new powerful entity? It looks like he just returned, so where has he been for the past six weeks? Where was his soul when he was dead? Does Henry know what has happened to Irving? Irving is surprised by his own resurrection since he asks the cashier if he is in Heaven or Hell. Does he have any idea of what happened after he died?

Let the theorizing begin! Share your thoughts, hopes, fears, and cheers in the comments below.

“Sleepy Hollow” airs Mondays at 9 p.m. On FOX.

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