I have been pretty hard on the Katrina character since pretty much the first episode. To me, Katrina is the Princess Peach of Sleepy Hollow. We believe she’s safe (enough) until Bowser or Wario comes to whip her away or stir up more trouble. Katrina is already a decently insufferable character due to the writers having no idea what to do with her, so making her consistently under duress is only adding fuel to the fire for those of us who would rather her character take a season long sabbatical. So, while I was less than enthused to hear that she would be dominating the storyline tonight rather than someone like Abbie or Jenny who deserve some more attention this season, I was hoping that maybe it would be an episode that at least left me feeling more favorable toward Katrina.
I have to commend actress Katia Winter – she did all she could with the absurd story she was given this week – but having to deal with a storyline about being impregnated against her will with the demon of the apocalypse isn’t the most forgiving task. A few weeks ago I spoke out against the show using the “jilted woman” trope and forced pregnancies such as this are on my gross, unnecessary trope list as well. Let’s take a female character, use pregnancy to tell a horror story, and use her body as the means of the deliverance of the purest evil the world has ever seen. This rings false to me, and I’m never in support of a woman’s body being used as a means to sell horror.
The episode did, however, present some finely tuned moments, even if the result wasn’t all that satisfying. Before that, though, I’m finding it increasingly difficult to defend Ichabod’s need to believe in Katrina’s faith that a sense of right and wrong still lies within Henry, especially after all of the evil he’s committed, but I’ll have to see it play out further to have any real thoughts on the matter.
Katrina isn’t having an awesome day. She’s been poisoned by Henry who was ordered to by Moloch, using a technique by the Hellfire cult. She manages to escape Abraham’s home and lands herself in a modern day hospital, which is where Abbie and Ichabod find her. It’s the moments with the three of them, whether they’re running from members of the cult or hiding out in an abandoned church, that offer the strongest moments, despite them also being frustrating for fans of the Abbie and Ichabod friendship, which is obviously being pulled at due to Katrina’s insistence in seeing good in Henry. Ichabod understands Abbie’s reluctance to see him as anything other than a threat, but also understands Katrina’s want to have blind faith in her son, her son who ended up in Moloch’s clutches because neither of his parents were there to lead him.
Abbie, however much she disagrees with them, still wants to help, and spends much of the episode putting her life on the line in order to protect Katrina. There’s a nice touch where Ichabod smiles proudly after Abbie takes out two of the gunmen after them on her own that reminds me why I’m able to barrel through so many of the frustrating scenes. Seeing Abbie play supporting character to Ichabod and Katrina’s love made me wish we were getting more Abbie focused stories, though. She has such a wealth of storytelling potential and it’s obvious the show is spreading itself thin with the Katrina and Ichabod trust issue plots.
To no one’s surprise, Katrina doesn’t actually end up giving birth to Moloch, and Abbie and Ichabod save her with a special artifact that conveniently is located in the baddie’s lab, making it equivalent to a conveniently created self-destruct button. However, at the end we do see Henry standing over a glass container that looks to be holding, at the very least, the spirt of Moloch. Or maybe it’s something else – but Henry looks proud of himself and that’s never good.
So, final verdict? I enjoyed Katrina more this week than I ever have, but that may be due to her being stuck in modern clothes and making her seem awkward and out of place, which endears her to me. This is especially striking due to how isolated she’s been for nearly the entirety of the series. I still don’t believe that Winter and Tom Mison share an ounce of chemistry, but they both did fine work in tonight’s episode, and the imagery of the demon trying to push itself through Katrina’s stomach was satisfyingly gruesome, even if I don’t enjoy the trope. It was a fast moving, entertaining episode that couldn’t hide its faults as much as it would like. However, Sleepy Hollow does enough well, especially for a genre show that doesn’t try to be anything other than what it is, that the faults are easy to bypass.