Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina takes a second, more successful run at its big battle

Illustration for article titled iChilling Adventures of Sabrina/i takes a second, more successful run at its big battle
Image: Diyah Pera/Netflix
TV ReviewsAll of our TV reviews in one convenient place.

So, having gone through the worst version of how the war with the pagans could turn out, Sabrina goes through the best version of it. This time, she unites the Unholy Regalia, then uses Ambrose’s help to get back to the correct point in time to stop almost everything that happens.

Advertisement

Seeing as we’ve already gone through this once, there’s something almost a little pat about reliving it, but this time successfully. With the benefit of foresight and the timely addition of some witch powers, Sabrina swiftly undoes the mess that the first run-through of this timeline created. Yanking everyone out of various danger zones and hiding them in Dorian’s bar serves to at least get everyone out of harm’s way long enough for the team to come up with a better plan, which is then executed with no hiccups.

Advertisement

In fact, it’s all so tidy that the entire thing is wrapped up with plenty of time for multiple new storylines to get launched by the end of the episode. Blackwood may not get to kill all the Spellmans in this version, but he does get away with his time egg, his two kids, and poor Agatha. Altogether, more than enough to unleash some kind of unholy evil. It’s hard to see Prudence blame Ambrose for everything that happened, but she’s not wrong that it was probably a mistake not to take out Faustus when they had the chance. Any version of a free Father Blackwood is a dangerous one, and they’re unlikely to get another chance to take him out in the near future.

She and Nick are the most unhappy by the end of everything. Well, minus the pagans, who get, respectively, poisoned by a witch, decapitated, tortured and killed by doll effigy, and then stabbed. It turns out that there’s a reason the pagans haven’t been on the rise in some time—when the witches aren’t totally without power, they’re more than capable of taking them on.

Advertisement

That new power is thanks to Zelda, who manages to survive her Nether Realm vision this time, and put her knowledge to good use getting the coven powers again, finding a new goddess to worship, and rescuing Hilda. She may put up a good front, but she just doesn’t do things without her sister, and there was no way she was going to accept Hilda staying dead. So she doesn’t. There’s a bit of a family similarity between her and Sabrina in their hardheadedness. By the end of the episode, she’s grounded her coven in new worship, regained her whole family, and embarked on a new relationship with Mambo Marie (did anyone else catch her calling Marie “comely” in the Nether Realm?). Also, when Prudence said that Marie came for her own reasons…did Marie know this was the reason? She was awfully patient with Zelda being freaked out by her Vodou practice and (gasp!) Catholicism.

Illustration for article titled iChilling Adventures of Sabrina/i takes a second, more successful run at its big battle
Image: Diyah Pera/Netflix
Advertisement

And Sabrina, well, she gets to answer the age-old, deeply unfair question: Can a woman really have it all? The answer is yes, if she collects herself from a time loop and sets up parallel lives. After seven episodes of Sabrina being a little vague about what she really wanted, this one confirms that, in fact, she really does want to be Queen of Hell, enough that she’d give up her mortal life for it. But the version of her that’s seen what it’s like to lose that whole family isn’t interested in it anymore. Of course, she’s now created a time paradox and all of reality might collapse at any moment, but the important thing is, she got the best of both worlds. Ambrose, who acts as her conscience in both potential versions of reality, points out the flaws in her plans, but you can only ever warn Sabrina of the consequences. It’s pretty hard to stop her altogether.

As this part of the season wraps up, it’s hard to predict where the show will go from here. So much of the plot has dealt with Lucifer’s secret plans that it’s hard to envision it without him. Are he and Lilith really out of the mix from now on? As Sabrina admits, it’s hard to keep much from Lilith for long, but as long as she’s safe herself, maybe she’s done with Greendale. What’s a teenage witch to do if she doesn’t have to think about Hell?

Advertisement

Stray observations

  • Brutal to show a tombstone for Salem in that possible future, but I appreciate that even in the depths of his sadness, poor lonely Ambrose gave Salem a proper sendoff.
  • “I’m sure there’s a logical explanation for why Ms. Wardwell shot you, Aunt Zee!” So generous of Sabrina.
  • For a minute there, I thought their solution was to swap Wardwells in the Green Man and the distinctly non-virginal Lilith was going to pop out.
  • Carcosa sounded so insulted that the townspeople didn’t want his free caramel apples and carnival rides.
  • On the Lilith front, I hope she sticks around. She’s a lot of fun. Her constant eye rolling at everyone else would be missed.
  • So ultimately the only death that sticks is Dorcas. Even Dr. Cee gets resurrected, although I was suspicious we would get a suggestion that Hilda had laid eggs on him or something.
  • OK, while Hilda and Dr. Cee are my number one favorite couple (so glad they can keep doing Sweeney Todd sing-alongs together), I did really like Ambrose and Prudence together. Maybe they can work it out?
Advertisement

Contributor, The A.V. Club. Lisa is a writer and editor based in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter