Sleepy Hollow “Novus Ordo Seclorum” Review (Season 3, Episode 8)

Sleepy Hollow Novus Ordo Seclorum

It seems I’ve had a lot of opportunities to quote my favorite Vulcan lately, and I’m pleased to do it again. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one. That’s what I was thinking as I watched Sleepy Hollow’s winter finale. There were a lot of things this mid-season finale did right, and I must say I’m pretty relieved.

This episode brought together and paid off most of the story threads we’ve been dealing with this season. Pandora’s plan finally came to fruition and her motivations were made clear. She wasn’t just bringing forth evil for the sake of bringing forth evil. She did all of that to bring her husband, The Hidden One, back so that the two of them could bring about a new world order. Naturally, that new world order did not include the human race. The Hidden One required the power flowing through Jenny’s veins to bring him back completely, so it was a race for Ichabod, Abbie, and Joe to find Jenny before he drained her. Or before the Eye caused Jenny to explode.

Part of what made this episode work was how personal the stakes were for everyone. Unlike last season, Jenny has been an important part of the team. The show has worked on rebuilding the relationship between Abbie and Jenny while also establishing one between Jenny and Joe. Ichabod has always cared about Jenny because she’s Abbie’s sister, but somewhere along the way he realized that Abbie and Jenny are the closest thing to family he has left. So Jenny being in peril raised the stakes for everyone. It made each of them desperate in a way, and people do strange things when they’re desperate. Joe was willing to go back to being a wendigo if it meant he would be able to save Jenny. Thankfully, Ichabod talked him down off that ledge, but then Ichabod turns around and uses a book of what appeared to be a lot of dark magic to try and control Pandora’s box. I don’t think anything that comes out of that box is a good thing, and based upon Ichabod’s previous conversation with Joe, it doesn’t make sense that Ichabod would even risk it. I understand he was trying to make sure that Pandora couldn’t call forth any more nasty creatures, but still. If you play with fire, you will get burned.

It looks like Abbie has made a choice that will have far reaching consequences. Well, she actually made a couple of choices that will have far reaching consequences. First, she turned in her badge and her gun effectively ending her career with the FBI. I said in my review of last week’s episode that Abbie needed to re-evaluate whether working with the FBI was right for her at this time. I didn’t really expect for things to play out the way they did, but it still might work out for the best. That is if the FBI is going to let her go. Reynolds hasn’t filed her resignation paperwork and he notified his superiors that Abbie has walked away. It was kind of odd that when he called his boss to inform him about Abbie, he referred to Abbie as an “asset” that they were “cultivating.” I don’t like that language at all because it means they’re planning to use Abbie for purposes to which Abbie won’t be made privy. For all we know, their plan is already in motion and Abbie has been working for them unbeknownst to her. I can’t be sure, but it looks like Abbie might not be able to trust Reynolds after all. I guess we’re going to have to wait and see where his loyalties lie.

The other decision Abbie made that will change everything is to sacrifice herself to save everyone else. She knew they couldn’t let the power from the Shard fall into the hands of The Hidden One or Pandora, so she took the Shard and its power back into (what I assume is) Hell. It was a noble sacrifice and it was very much reminiscent of Abbie sacrificing herself for Katrina in season one. Although I imagine it will be much more difficult to save Abbie this time around that it was to get her out of Purgatory. And let’s face it, getting her out of Purgatory wasn’t exactly a cake walk. And if that tree is indeed the doorway to Hell, it’s going to be much rougher on Abbie than Purgatory was too. There’s no way to tell what kind of effect this is going to have on Abbie once Ichabod and Co. get her back. I don’t think there’s any way for Abbie not to come back changed, but exactly what those changes are and how she deals with them could be interesting to see.

As mid-season finale’s go, this was a pretty good one. It wasn’t spectacular like Ichabod getting buried alive by the son he though was dead. But it did do a good job of restoring some of the faith that I’d lost in the show last season. One of my complaints last season was that there were so many dangling story threads that didn’t seem to really connect to anything else. Not only did they not connect with anything else, they were never resolved. I haven’t felt that way about this season. Yes, the monsters of the week have seemed kind of random, but they all served a purpose. Each one opened a bloom on Pandora’s tree so that she could open the door to Hell and retrieve her husband so they could destroy and remake the world the way they want it. The individual journeys Ichabod, Abbie, Jenny and Joe had thus far also led them to make the choices that put them in the situation they faced in this finale. Now the problem is figuring out how to save Abbie without either unleashing more evil on the world or compromising who they are in the process. It won’t be easy, but I have faith. Sleepy Hollow is on a (ridiculously) long break and won’t be back until February. I’m hoping the momentum we’ve gained during this first half of the season will continue into the second half. So what did y’all think of this week’s Sleepy Hollow?