Pop Culture

Questions Remaining after Season 1 of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

I finished The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina last night so for once I am actually with the times when it comes to a Netflix show. Usually, that only happens with books or Marvel movies.  I enjoyed it, and I have high hopes for the second season since the creators came into the show knowing there would be a second season.  As a result, even though the first season had a decent pace and gave quite a bit of background as it went, they also left quite a few open questions to be resolved in Season 2 (and later potentially).  I wasn’t even in a hurry to watch Sabrina since Riverdale’s second season had been such a disappointment but I think this Greendale set show has enough plot remaining for at minimum a good second season.
Here are the topics I am still curious about after watching the first season, so it should go without saying, beware of spoilers.
Nick Scratch:
 A few of my friends have mentioned how much they love the names on this show.  As soon as Nick introduced himself, I was already wondering whether it was a cheeky name or if it was actually a hint for those in the know.  After all, Old Nick and Old Scratch are alternate names for the devil so is this too on the nose? So far, Nick seems to mostly be what he says – a powerful warlock who also admires Sabrina’s father and as a result wants to get to know her.  He also has some more progressive views compared to some of the Church of Night members who are so concerned with tradition. However, he also prevented Prudence and Dorcas from solving the Harvey Kinkle issue so was that really because he was trying to help the Spellmans redeem themselves or was there something more to it?  It seems to be a common trope in YA literature and elsewhere to have one of the cool kids be nice to the new kid/outsider, only for it to later be revealed that the cool guy was actually part of a prank or long con.  At this point, I could definitely still see that happening, but I also like the idea of the show upending the trope and having Nick simply be a nice guy.  Or, if he is the devil, or the devil’s son, maybe he can also be rebelling against his father rather than trying to make the Dark Lord’s plan come to fruition?
Connor and the witch hunter:
Ambrose discovered early in the season that one of the bodies he was preparing belonged to a warlock and yet Father Blackwood did not seem that concerned about the possible threat of a witch hunter. Connor was not part of a known coven, or at least Ambrose hasn’t discovered one, yet he had a familiar and was obviously practicing.  So who discovered he was a warlock, and why did they want him dead? I have one potential theory/thought on this.  Everyone is telling Sabrina that the Dark Lord is their source of power (and she certainly gets a boost after she signs the book) and that is why she must sign herself over to him.  What if there is another route, and Connor was following it since he wasn’t raised in a coven? And church members killed him to cover up that there are sources of power that don’t involve the church or Satan? One thing that I think slightly supports this is the fact that Salem chose Sabrina before she had signed the book, before her Dark Baptism.  If her powers were linked only to the Dark Lord, wouldn’t a familiar wait until his/her chosen human had fully committed to those powers? Salem’s actions in the series are all about protecting Sabrina but at no point do his actions seem to push her in one direction or another regarding her decision to sign the book. If the familiar doesn’t care, doesn’t that imply the powers are independent of the Dark Lord as a source? Do witches actually have the power on their own, and the Dark Lord targets them to gain access and control their power rather than the reverse?
In a slightly related topic, the patriarchy and the Church:
Even though we generally think of witchcraft as a inherently female form of power, the structure of the Church of Night still very much puts the leadership in the hands of men – so much for the Dark Lord being a jealous groom towards his witches.  As a result, I fully expected the “Feast of Feast” episode to end with Sabrina discovering that Freya had not actually sacrificed herself, and that instead the elders of the Church had killed and eaten her, and then created this annual ritual to keep women in line and cover up their sins.  After all, only women are eligible to participate and yet, they strive for it.  What better way to keep women in line? Instead, the episode became a commentary on how some women help enforce existing power structures because they have managed to find a way to be powerful within those rules, and would rather hang on to those vestiges of power than fight for something unknown.
Still, there is definitely something going on with that Church since that meeting at the end with Father Blackwood’s son was rather nefarious.  I think this all relates back to Connor’s death in some way. When Father Blackwood first took an interest in Ambrose, I was a bit worried he was going to make him the fall guy for something since he already has a spot on his record, and in the interview said he had been searching for a father figure, and easily mislead as a result.  Luke is researching something for some reason, and it seems like it would help cement the power of the Church of Night, especially for its male leadership.
Sabrina’s Parents:
I don’t really have too many theories or thoughts on this, but it is obviously still an open plot hole.  I think Edward knew that Sabrina was baptized and that Sabrina’s parents planned the timing to trick the devil and make sure their daughter had choice and a way out.
Other random thoughts:
What’s the prophecy Ms. Wardwell refers to, and what exactly is Sabrina’s role in it?  That was after all why it was so important that she sign her name in the book.
Will there be backstory on Salem or familiars in general? I’m assuming there is something special about him.
Is Ghost Dorothea just socially awkward or is there a different reason she seems to creepy?

One Comment

  • katie71483

    I loved that it was so fiercely feminist, and that they didn’t make Harvey turn out to be a closet asshole. The casting director did an amazing job all around, but Michelle Gomez was an inspired choice for Ms Wardwell.

    The one big problem I had was the scene where they punish the bullies in the mine by having them kiss. That seemed off to me, and felt a bit homophobic. I couldn’t put my finger on it the first time I saw it, but I re-watched when someone else mentioned it making them uncomfortable. That helped clarify why it didn’t sit well with me. I found it a stark contrast to their handling of Sue and her storyline which I felt was handled with care. (I love that they used a genderqueer actor for that part.)

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