GOOD GOD, CAN SOMEONE IN GREENDALE TURN ON A FREAKING LIGHT!?
As you may have guessed from the introduction, I am once again reviewing Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. I will be reviewing the seventh and eighth episodes of the 2nd season and then Case will be back with us, covering the big finale. If you’ve read any of my previous reviews, you know that one of my huge issues with this show is that no one in this damn town — even the mortals — seems to know how to flip a light switch. Visually and thematically, this is one dark show.
It’s also, especially during season 2, been a rather dull show. Watching it, one gets the feeling that the writers ran out of ideas halfway through season 1. Yes, everyone worships Satan. Yes, they’re all witches and warlocks. That should be interesting but trust this show to make the dark arts seem boring and rather tedious. “What the Heaven’s happened!?” Aunt Hilda (Lucy Davis) exclaims at the start of the show when she sees as seriously, perhaps fatally, wounded Sabrina and replacing “Hell” with “Heaven” is supposed to be shocking but, at this point, who cares?
The show’s main strength has always been Kiernan Shipka’s performance Sabrina. She’s always been able to bring life to even the laziest of dialogue but this episode comes close to defeating even the normally reliable Shipka. Kiernan Shipka has always kept the show grounded but this episode sent her up into the air.
While the previous episode ended with Sabrina nearly dead, this episode opens with Sabrina coming back to life and becoming not only a healer but also a messianic figure. Sabrina not only heals Ambrose but she also prevents him from being executed. And it says a lot of about this show’s flaws that I wouldn’t have minded if Amrbose’s head had been chopped off. If nothing else, it would have meant no longer having to listen to him whine about every little thing. Sabrina also gives Roz back her eyesight, so I guess that subplot’s resolved. Roz is no longer blind and yay, I guess. Roz is a flat, one-demensional character. You didn’t care when she went blind and you’re not going to care that she can now see. By that same token, you’re not going to care when Aunt Zelda is freed from the spell that Blackwood’s put her under because, again, she’s just Zelda and she’s not that interesting.
Anyway, now that Sabrina has returned from the dead and can magically do whatever the script requires her to do at any given moment, she wants to spread her father’s gospel and bring together mortals and humans. Alone among the students at the Academy, Nick Scratch thinks that’s a good idea and I’d be worried about that if I cared about Nick and Sabrina as a couple….
Really, this was a surprisingly uninvolving episode. I’m not even going to discuss Harvey and Theo in the mines or Ms. Wardwell creating a servant in her bathtub. Nor am I going to talk about the rat that a possessed Zelda drops in a meat grinder. It all plays out very slowly and it mostly plays out in the dark and it doesn’t work because none of these characters feel like they’re worth all the trouble.
As I pointed out earlier, even Kiernan Shipka stuggled during this episode. Over the course of one episode, Sabrina goes from being a teenager trying to find her place in the world to being some sort of witch messiah and, in the process, she becomes self-righteous and a bit dull. The episode ends with Sabrina looking at a cave painting, a prophecy that proclaims her to be the herald of Hell.
“I’m evil!” Sabrina says, shocked.
And who knows? Maybe she is. But seriously, who cares?
Coming up next, once I’ve found the strength to continue, episode 8! And then Case will be here to wrap things up with the finale!