blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (2018) s01e13 – The Passion of Sabrina Spellman

Big development this episode… Satan, Lucifer, the Dark Lord, et cetera, is an active character. He appears as a goat-headed demon and whoever does the voice isn’t credited (whoever’s doing it isn’t the right casting) and He wants to get Sabrina (Kiernan Shipka) to do his bidding. Not because He needs her to do His bidding for any particular reason, but because Michelle Gomez bets Him Shipka’s not really a bad girl and the Devil needs Shipka to be a bad girl for His future plans for her. She’s going to be His herald when the gates of Hell open, which is either in continuity with the Sabrina comic or the Afterlife with Archie comic. Or both. But I think the former.

So while the Devil is trying to tempt Shipka to misbehave and she’s trying to resist, He starts messing with the people around her, just like she worried… last episode. Things happen pretty fast between last episode and this one, with Ross Lynch and Jaz Sinclair basically ready to get busy if only Lynch would break it off with Shipka, which does seem to end up happening this episode, but more to get Shipka ready to pursue things with warlock Gavin Leatherwood. Sinclair fairly ingloriously disappears this episode, which also has Shipka returning to Baxter High as a student. Just in time to watch Sinclair and Lynch practice Romeo and Juliet while she’s stuck with bully jock Ty Wood. Wood should be sympathetic as the show has previously suggested he was raped in summer camp years earlier by other boys and his parents beat him to shut up about it but… well, somehow the show manages to make him still unsympathetic.

Like, he’s unsympathetic to the point when he gets his graphic, gory comeuppance… they could’ve held the shot a little longer. Would’ve been fine.

Meanwhile, Shipka’s still doing evening classes at witch academy, where Richard Coyle has tasked Miranda Otto to direct the annual performance of The Passion of Lucifer Morningstar, which turns out to be a terribly written play and the scenes with everyone congratulating the kids over a shitty school play is some real talk. Leatherwood’s the lead, Shipka’s the understudy for the female part—Lilith, you know, Michelle Gomez only back in biblical times—and the Devil thinks Shipka should have the main female part.

Also Miranda Otto has to deal with the other teachers at the academy being catty to her, which gives Otto some great material but it eventually turns out to be Gomez’s episode. Especially given Coyle’s adaptation of the Satanic Bible story has been updated to be misogynist and reduce Lilith to a subservient position because Coyle’s a shitty guy. Gomez gets to watch the play and her silent performance is phenomenal stuff. So good.

“Sabrina” is basically Gomez’s show at this point.

It’s a fairly good episode, with Lynch’s teenage cruelties to Shipka a little weird all things (like Coyle’s misogyny, not to mention him slut-shaming when she decides it’s not the right time for them to have sex for the first time) considered. Lynch has been a sympathetic character to this point, but he’s quickly—and effectively—doing a one eighty on it.

I’m very curious what happens next episode as pretty much everything outstanding has been tied up here; “Sabrina”’s got no patience for its B and C plots. Kind of like how Shipka can’t make it though an episode without magicking something better without thinking about the repercussions of her magicking.

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