Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is a 2018 American fantasy horror television series premiering on October 26 on Netflix.
Based on the 2014 Archie Comics graphic novel, the series is a much darker vision than the Melissa Joan Hart-starring television series from the late ’90s, says creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa.
The series reimagines the story of Sabrina the Teenage Witch as a dark coming-of-age tale that traffics in horror, the occult and witchcraft.
“Tonally in the vein of Rosemary’s Baby and The Exorcist, this adaptation finds Sabrina wrestling to reconcile her dual nature — half-witch, half-mortal — while standing against the evil forces that threaten her, her family and the daylight world humans inhabit.”
“It’s not until the sixth episode, when Aguirre-Sacasa and team start to delve into the dark(er) side of Greendale, that the writers’ decision to keep one foot in the mortal realm begins to pay off. But when it does, Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina demands to be binge-watched. The Spellmans’ hometown is nearly as full of colorful characters as Riverdale…” Danette Chavez, AV Club
“From a visual standpoint, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is stunning. The set pieces are pure Halloween, designed with the horror fan in mind. There are nods and Easter eggs at every turn to horror, from Suspiria to Hellraiser, and the fall setting encompasses the holiday spirit. There’s a dark whimsy to the series’ aesthetic that isn’t afraid to get ugly when the horror calls for it.” Meagan Navarro, Bloody Disgusting
“This is a series that carries the weight of a beloved comic book character and a TV show with a lot of nostalgia attached, with pressure to be the best of both worlds—kind of like Sabrina herself. While it doesn’t always rise to the challenge, it still does enough to make the trip worthwhile. There aren’t a lot of shows out there where your stars eat corpses, sacrifice goats, and worship the devil.” Beth Elderkin, Gizmodo
“It remains almost impossibly leaden – the lack of chemistry between Shipka (a fine actor but too earnest for the part) and Ross Lynch (as Sabrina’s boyfriend, Harvey) emblematic of that dogging the rest of the collation. The script is woeful. Great gouts of exposition spew forth, interspersed with emotional scenes…” Lucy Mangan, The Guardian
“The show certainly takes advantage of Netflix’s lack of broadcast censorship – it’s not overly gory, but there’s plenty of freaky stuff afoot, giving it a slightly more adult tone than the likes of Riverdale – and it has an effective way of building tension that bodes well for the series as a whole. Even the opening credits are super creepy.” Laura Prudom, IGN India
” …if you want it to be all horror all the time, you’re going to have to adjust your expectations. Much like its titular character, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina has one foot firmly in the dramatic world of the mortal American teenager, while the other dabbles in the more horrific world of dark arts. Sabrina balances these dual identities well, but it will be interesting to see which side wins over.” Kelly McNeely, iHorror
Cast and characters:
Kiernan Shipka (The Blackcoat’s Daughter) has been cast as Sabrina Spellman, a new version of the character originally played by Melissa Joan Hart. Jaz Sinclair co-stars as Rosalind. Brash, empowered, and outspoken, Rosalind Walker is the daughter of Greendale’s minister and Sabrina’s best friend at Baxter High.
Ross Lynch (My Friend Dahmer) will play Harvey Kinkle, Sabrina’s boyfriend. Harvey is the son of a coal miner, a dreamboat and a dreamer, completely unaware of the dark forces conspiring to keep him and Sabrina apart.
Michelle Gomez (Doctor Who) will play Mary Wardell, Sabrina’s (Shipka) favourite teacher and mentor at Baxter High. When she is possessed by the Devil’s handmaiden, Madam Satan, Ms. Wardell turns into a sultry, cunning manipulator who is always trying to lure Sabrina down the Path of Night.
Chance Perdomo is Ambrose Spellman. The character is Sabrina’s warlock cousin from England. Placed under house-arrest by the Witches Council, Ambrose is forbidden from leaving the funeral home where he lives with the Spellman women. Witty, puckish and pan-sexual, he is one of Sabrina’s partners in crime, always up for mischief.
Lucy Davis (Shaun of the Dead) has been cast as Hilda Spellman, one of Sabrina’s two witch aunts. More nurturing than Zelda, Hilda’s motherly nature and warm sense of humor belie a wicked, ghoulish streak. She is as adept at brewing spite jars against her family’s enemies as she is at concocting love potions for the students at Baxter High.
Miranda Otto (Annabelle: Creation) is Zelda Spellman, Sabrina’s other aunt. Proud and devout, Zelda believes there is no greater honour than serving the Dark Lord as a member of the Church of Night. She is the family’s disciplinarian, fiercely protective of Sabrina, and very much Cain to aunt Hilda’s Abel.
Richard Coyle (The Collection) is Father Blackwood, High Priest of the Church of Night and Dean of the Academy of the Unseen Arts. Ruthless and ambitious, Blackwood hides a terrifying dark agenda that will put him in direct conflict with Sabrina and other members of the coven.
Tati Gabrielle who will play Prudence, a student at the Academy of Unseen Arts and the de facto leader of a trio of witches known as the Weird Sisters. Beautiful and cunning, Prudence nurses a deep, personal, and possibly life-threatening grudge against Sabrina.”
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