Kristen Dragotto, A&E Editor
Warning: Article contains spoilers.
On April 5, 2019, fans praised Satan with the return of the hit Netflix show “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.” The show’s second season took the disturbing and horrifying content to a new level that may have left fans more disturbed than chilled.
Season two picks up almost immediately where the last season left fans. The season follows Sabrina (Kiernan Shipka) and the conundrums she finds herself in. In this latest season she is transitioning into her role as a witch and begins attending the academy full time. The audience quickly learns that Sabrina is destined for more than she bargained for, this much anticipated and expected plot twist leaves the audience at the end of the season with a cliffhanger that would leave Satan sweating. With the show guaranteed two more seasons under its current contract, fans can rest easy knowing this cliffhanger will be resolved.
The show’s second season differed greatly from the first season in terms of its pacing. The second season did not give the audience so much as a second to take a breath. This newest addition to the story of Sabrina demands viewers to be active in their watching so they don’t miss a beat.
It also became evident that the purpose of the first season was to set up the second season. In a review titled “’Chilling Adventure of Sabrina’ part review: Defying and defining the darkness,” critic Jay Ruymann wrote, “It’s clear that the writers were setting Sabrina’s story up in part 1 for the dramatic and dark departure in part 2.” This statement rings more than true as fans see Sabrina depart from her mortal path, leading her down a darker path.
The show’s edger spin and increase in darker content caught some kickback from fans on social media. The show does not offer a trigger warning for those who struggle with body dysmorphia and those who are struggling or have struggled with suicidal thoughts. Both of these subjects are touched upon in the episode titled “Doctor Cerberus’s House of Horror.” There is no question that the show should have offered a warning for fans, but the overall themes of the show focus on topics like the occult, sexual deviance and all things black magic, which in and of itself allows for offensive or triggering topics to be explored.
The show also attempted to address the transgender community, with the introduction of the new character Theo formerly known as Suzie played by Lachian Watson. While, I am all for bringing awareness to an audience and think this show has the following to do so, their ability in presenting the subject in a way that would do it justice fell short. While the show’s focus is not Theo, the progression of that character’s development seemed rushed and lacked authenticity despite Watson’s ability to take on this role flawlessly.
The second season did also focus on the romantic relationships on not only Sabrina, but her mortal friends. These relationships complicate things for the characters which add some additional plot twists that make fans cringe. Along with the topic of romance the theme of sexual relations and virginity became a recurring topic in this newest season. While the show has addressed the topic of sexual deviance in the first season the second season took on the topic more aggressively, making its rating of TV-14 questionable.
The newest season of the “Chilling Adventure of Sabrina” had a fabulous cast who did an outstanding job in terms of acting and while the season improved in terms of pacing, the content may leave fans with a love-hate relationship with the series overall. The nine-part series in total has a run time of about nine hours. Even with the hourlong episodes the show felt rushed and did not allow for the plot or the characters to fully develop. While the topic of Satan, the occult and witchcraft lend itself to a darker subject matter, some of these aspects felt overdone. Despite the flaws the newest season presents it is still worth watching. While the show as a whole has grown it still has much to improve. Fans can only hope that they will get what they want and deserve in the third season which will be released in fall of this year.