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'Sleepy Hollow' recap: Succubus among us

'Sleepy Hollow' recap: Succubus among us
Nick (Matt Barr) and Abbie (Nicole Beharie) are on the case in the "Sleepy Hollow" episode "Heartless." (Fred Norris / Fox)

Oh, witch, you have just worked Abbie's last frayed nerve.

There's no sense burying this somewhere in the middle of this week's recap of supernatural sci-fi cop buddy drama "Sleepy Hollow," where it would fit chronologically, because there's a girlfight to discuss and it simply won't wait.

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There are verbal fisticuffs only between Lt. Abbie "Had it up to here" Mills and the snotty and superior Katrina, but there might have been some hair pulling and bitch-slapping if Ichabod Crane hadn't stepped in.

And that might've been kind of awesome.

The heated exchange happens because Abbie can't hold her tongue another minute. She can't listen to yet another soliloquy from Katrina about Henry's innate goodness. "He won't be done until everyone is dead and the world is in flames," Abbie (Nicole Beharie) says, explaining the obvious to someone who's dense as a door on the subject.

But he still has a soul, he's my son, it's all Moloch's fault, blah, blah, blah, says Katrina (Katia Winter).

Abbie's already miffed, and rightly so, because Katrina is monopolizing Crane and lying around watching bad reality TV when there's a war going on. Abbie's working 24/7 here, tracking the Horseman of War and trying to save the world. Little help?

The last thing she needs is a tone-deaf speech about scared little boy Henry from a woman she's not sold on to begin with, and it's no wonder she explodes. The only question is how she kept her temper in check for so long.

And, it should come as no surprise, Abbie's vindicated twice in this hour. First, Henry's managed to birth the baby Moloch somehow even though Crane (Tom Mison) and Abbie thought they burned that bun in Katrina's oven. (See last week's "Deliverance" recap).

And second, the bauble that Katrina wears around her neck doesn't just allow her to see the Headless Horseman as the bewigged Abraham. Henry has put some kind of baby bonding hex on it. (It's not giving away too much to note that next week's episode is called "Mama").

We're working up to a massive and completely justified TOLDJA from Abbie.

On to the down-and-dirty from the episode dubbed "Heartless," which contains symbiotic stories about the monster of the week and that game-changing revelation about l'enfant terrible.

There's a succubus named Lilith (guest star Caroline Ford) on the loose in Sleepy Hollow, conjured by none other than Henry, and her goal is to drain the life force out of any poor desirous slob who gets too close. She heads to the nearest (only?) meat market in town and preys on a nerdy guy with lust in his heart.

Before he can even ask if she has any sexually transmitted diseases, he's toast, or more accurately, toasted. And the lithe and lovely Lilith makes off with his red vaporous essence, which she pukes into a jar for Henry (John Noble).

Abbie realizes this is a supernatural murder and there's tons of research to do and, hey, how about a hand, Crane? But he's distracted by Katrina, who provides a few clues in her two minutes of usefulness before nearly passing out. So she's gone from damsel who always needs rescuing to damsel who always needs tending. Tiresome!

Katrina's malaise does turn out to be important, though. She's having visions of a baby inside Fredericks Manor, also known as Evil HQ, which turn out to be actual peeks into the compound. Bouncing baby Moloch looks like a regular tiny human, by the way, and shows no outward signs (yet) of being the Horrid King, except that he feeds on lives instead of formula.

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The next succubus victim is a local girl secretly crushing on her friend and then, though not fatally, Nick Hawley, who carries a torch for Abbie that's obvious to everyone but Abbie. She's tried to get intel from him on her current monster situation, but as usual, he's an empty blonde shell. (No, Hawley, that was not a date, and Abbie doesn't want to have a drink with you).

While he's nursing a beer and a bruised ego, Hawley (Matt Barr) meets the lethal Lilith. A location spell from Katrina – finally, magic! – finds him and his attacker just before he's a crispy critter. Not the kind of getting lucky he had in mind or, as Crane's learned to call it from "The Bachelor" ripoff he watches, "macking."

Not only does Lilith do her damage in spike heels and a slip dress, she's bulletproof. She escapes, only to attack Crane later when he and Hawley go hunting for her. The creature apparently can see into the hearts of others. She tells Crane during their confrontation that there's a burning desire inside him that he's trying to hide and some emotion in his heart that has soured. Do go on, Lilith!

Too bad she didn't have time to spill some more truths. But since this is "Sleepy Hollow," the gang pulls together, even Abbie and Katrina call a truce, and defeat the beast, saving Crane from a flash-fried fate.

Katrina decides she needs to go back to Evil HQ so she can kill Moloch herself, and she tells only Abbie about this plan. Abbie lets her go and breaks the news later to Crane, who's strangely calm about the whole thing. That's because he can't see the look of love on her face when she eyes baby Moloch in his crib. An operative, spy and ally, indeed.

Crane hair watch: after spending entire episodes with it pulled back in a messy man pony, he's been wearing it down lately. The fans have spoken and showrunners listened. Thanks for that.

This week's twistory: a third-century Roman priest defeated a succubus, also called incordata, and gave the remains of her heart to the emperor Claudius. The holy fighter, immortalized as St. Valentine, kicked off the tradition of giving heart-shaped swag on Feb. 14. Not Hallmark?

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