First off, I have to say that this show is nothing like the Sabrina: The Teenage Witch from 90’s ABC television. Not even remotely so get that out of our head. The cat doesn’t talk, the aunts aren’t happy, no celebrities are gonna show up on the show and Sabrina wasn’t just left at her aunts to learn witchcraft, her parents were killed.
That said, I freakin’ love this show.
The show starts easy enough, you learn that Sabrina is about to enter an important moment in her life, her Dark Baptism. This is kinda like a Bat Mitzvah for a witch, when she pledges herself to the Path of Night and the Dark Lord aka Satan. She would then cut all ties with the mortal world and enter the Academy of Unseen Arts.
Trouble is our girl Sabrina (played well by Kiernan Shipka, who played Don Draper’s daughter on Mad Men)is torn. She has been looking forward to this moment all her life, but she doesn’t want to leave her mortal life behind. What’s a girl to do? Especially when unseen forces might be trying to force her hand?
I’m about halfway through episode four as I write this review and I’m impressed with the richness of Sabrina’s world. You don’t feel like anything was left to whim. From rituals to character traits to wardrobe, pretty much everything works well to build this dark local of Greendale, which is in the same unknown state as the CW’s Riverdale. (Not only do we get mentions of Riverdale, we will get a cameo by someone from Riverdale in the first season and the possibilities of more in the future.
There are plenty of mysteries too. What’s in the mines that scared Sabrina’s boyfriend Harvey (played by Ross Lynch)? Why did Sabrina’s father and mother do what they did to Sabrina? And what roles did her aunts (played by Lucy Davis and Miranda Otto) play in all of this? What’s taken control of Ms. Wardwell (played by former The Master actress Michelle Gomez)?
This series is just a lovely thing to watch and it has a good pedigree coming from Greg Berlanti (he of many many series too numerous to mention) and developed by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (he’s chief creative officer of Archie Comics, as well as a writer of the comic book version of this show.)
I have very few complaints about the show. Mainly about how clueless the normal humans in Greendale seem to be, but that’s minor.
I look forward to watching the rest of this season.