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CHILLING ADVENTURES OF SABRINA “Chapter Twelve: The Epiphany” review

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Synopsis

As Sabrina prepares for a spellbinding showcase, Susie embraces a series of new beginnings, and Ms. Wardwell finds greater purpose at Baxter High.

Review

The first batch of episode of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina worked as an excellent introduction to the world of the show. Whilst its storyline meandered through the world of the occult its unique cinematography and strong characterisation are what carried it to a successful conclusion.

This episode acts as a reintroduction following the holiday season special. Its 55min runtime is brilliantly dedicated to re-contextualising the show, taking it to even darker territory than we have been before.

Given the events of Part 1 it feels natural for Sabrina to move to The Academy of Unseen Arts. Not only does it allow the series to explore more of its occult nature but it gives Sabrina a chance to act out a little more.

In the vein of shows like Buffy, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is looking to its dark side for analogies for the trials and tribulations of being a teenager. This episode specifically picks up on her breakup with Harvey (Ross Lynch) and puts her on the path to hooking up with Nicholas Scratch (Gavin Leatherwood) who is clearly being setup as her gateway to the world of witches and warlocks.

All of the successful elements of Part 1: Father Blackwood, the Aunties and of course Lillith return.

We’re still none-the-wiser on what Richard Coyle’s Blackwood is really up to. His is truly a long game and it’s testament to strong writing that over ten episodes in they haven’t fully revealed his motivations and managed to keep the character compelling.

It’s equally great to see Lillith given a little more to do outside of her quest to interfere with Sabrina. She is now Headmistress of Baxter High and meddling with mortal lives. It’s a source of great frustration for her that the Dark Lord is keeping her in the mortal world when Sabrina is no longer attending Baxter High but it’s clearly going to be a point of great interest to see her meddling with Harvey, Roz and Susie.

Speaking of Sabrina’s best pals they don’t have as much to do here. With her separated from them it’s going to be interesting to see how they factor in to the on going storylines of the season. Given this is more of an ensemble show I’m sure the writers will find a way to keep them interesting even whilst Sabrina is away at the Academy.

The highlight of Sabrina’s home life remains Lucy Davis as Aunt Hilda. She is absolutely excellent in this show. I thought her comedic gold couldn’t go much further than it did in Wonder Woman but her portrayal of Hilda is so much more. She remains funny, loveable and heartwarming throughout. She easily steals every scene in which she appears.

Verdict

“The Epiphany” is a strong return for the sophomore run of the show. Its characters are stronger and its storyline feels better defined. This is definitely the first step in the show moving from its introductory phase to finding its stride.

8/10

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina stars Kiernan Shipka as the titular witch. The series also stars Michelle Gomez as Mary Wardwell/Madam Satan, Jaz Sinclair as Rosalind Walker, Chance Perdomo as Ambrose Spellman, Lucy Davis as Hilda Spellman, Miranda Otto as Zelda Spellman, Ross Lynch as Harvey Kinkle and Richard Coyle as Father Blackwood.

“Part 2” is available on Netflix on now.


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