Series Review: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

Similar to my book review for Simon vs The Homo Sapiens agenda, I am going to review another popular topic. Instead of a book, this time I am going to talk to you all about the newest Netflix Original series: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.

The front cover of the series: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.

I first came across this series when I was scrolling through Netflix. It didn’t quite catch my eye at the time. It was Halloween and I was looking for a scare, and the show didn’t seem frightening at all. 

Later on, I heard some friends chatting about it. This was some weeks after I first saw the show. I explained how I haven’t watched the show and that it seemed a bit distasteful.

I was a bit afraid to watch the show, since I found out the same people who created Riverdale created this show. I didn’t quite enjoy Riverdale, I found it boring, cliche, and a bit badly-made, so I hoped this show didn’t suffer from that, as well. 

The moment my friend mentioned there might be a closeted transgender in the show, I was intrigued. 

This is something that I quite enjoy about the show. It is unafraid to touch on topics we might not quite enjoy, such as sexuality. Ambrose Spellman, Sabrina Spellman’s cousin, is openly gay. I will touch more on this subject later. 

The show follows a girl named Sabrina Spellman, who attends Baxter High, but she is no regular girl. She was born to a mortal mother and a warlock father, but due to a tragic accident, she is left to live with her aunties– Hilda and Zelda –and her cousin, Ambrose. It is later hinted that her parents’ deaths wasn’t as much as an accident as many have claimed.

She mostly lives a normal life, attends school with her two best friends, and even has a boyfriend named Harvey Kinkle. She has a familiar named Salem who she called upon to have a mutual bond with; he helps her and she helps him. 

Although, on her sixteenth birthday she must choose whether or not to either keep her human life or turn into a full witch and attend the Academy of Unseen Arts and follow in her father’s footsteps.

After some issues with the ceremony, she stays as a half-human half-witch on the condition that she must attend the Academy of Unseen Arts during her free time.

Back to the topic of “forbidden topics”, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is the first show I have ever seen to ever have characters such as the ones they have. Like I previously stated, Ambrose is an openly gay warlock who has a big thing for another warlock named Luke. 

Meanwhile, Susie Putnam is canonically non-binary, which means they would rather be addressed with they/them pronouns. Although they also tend to enjoy being called on with male pronouns, so one can say they are non-binary but would swing towards he/him pronouns.  Their family history has been littered with cases of LGBTQA+, such as her uncle Jesse who would dress in his mother’s clothes and tend to be fond of men.

Nicholas Scratch, a warlock who befriends Sabrina, is revealed to be perfectly fine with being in polyamorous relationships. He even seems to only be in polyamorous relationships. This is the first time I have ever seen this in a show. Ever. I was shocked yet amazed at how this show touches on so many minorities. 

On the topic of LGBTQA+, we also see the bullying Susie faces while at Baxter High. He faces severe bullying from the jocks at his school. One time his shirt was lifted by the jocks because they wanted to see if he was “truly” a man.

Many also face the torment of the jocks, especially females. We see how patriarchy is still very much alive in our schools, along with censorship, when the principal at Baxter High refuses to help Susie, threatens to take down Elephant (WICCA), and bans books that may be “harmful and offensive” to the students. 

Not only do we see minorities in the LGBTQA+ being represented, but we also see many POC characters. The three sisters who torment Sabrina, Prudence and the other two, are all minorities. A black teenage girl, an Asian female, and a ginger. One of Sabrina’s best friends is also a black teenage girl, but she is going through severe vision loss. Around episode 5 or 6, it is revealed she will go completely blind in less than three months. 

Harvey Kinkle, Sabrina’s boyfriend, faces trouble at home. He wants to stay in school and possibly even pursue a career in comic books, but his father would rather he work in the mines.Harvey’s big brother, Tom, protects him as much as he can. 

The show touches on all these topics, but it also touches on religion, which is a big thing I also noticed. In this series, Satanism is treated lightly and it’s common, almost to how Christianity is treated in today’s society. Like Christians, Sabrina and her family follow the religion of Satanism. Satanism, like Christianity, has its own rules and traditions in this show. For example, the Feast of Feasts. 

What truly made me stay, though, was how Sabrina started questioning her religion. I related to her in a sense that she didn’t like what these people were doing and she wanted freedom. She wanted to make her own path. Zelda Spellman, though, is the Satanic version of a strict Christian mother. While Sabrina questions and tries to unravel the secrets of the unholy church, Zelda wants Sabrina to accept their ways. 

“Why does he [Satan AKA The Dark Lord] get to decide what I do or don’t do with my body?” -Sabrina Spellman 

Yes, the show addresses all of this, but a question one might have is: “Well, is the show scary?”. For those looking for a fright, I’m afraid this isn’t for you. There are some scenes that are absolutely scary and gory, like in the first episode when Sabrina meets her familiar or when she’s chased by a scarecrow, but overall the show is quite peaceful. 

Each episode is almost an hour long, including the recap and the introduction, but it is completely worth it. The episode captures you, and it makes you want to sit and watch it until you finish it. I’m only on the seventh episode of the first season, but I can’t wait to watch more.

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Published by V

Class of 2021 MLEC | Co-president of ERA | 15 yo | Latina | LGBT |

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