On the Finale of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Lovecraft & Its Future

13 Jan

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

SPOILER ALERT

Netflix’s supernatural series concerning a certain teenage spell-caster has sadly ended. The past seasons had The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina dealing with a lot of issues not only about life as a half-witch, half-mortal but also with her role against adversaries far more experienced than her in matters of what exists in heaven, hell and in between!

The installation of cosmic horror–namely the works of H. P. Lovecraft–is very well done. Instead of directly referencing specific Elder Gods, the concepts of what they represent are given a fresh new spin. I had wondered just how the pagans from the previous season would summon them. I half expected grandiose incantations and a lamps exploding as they enter, but–because of budgetary concerns-the beings sulk into the narrative. They appear as humanoid forms and are simply known as “Terrors.”

Anyone seeing them as they truly are would go mad, but as for where Nyarlathotep is–could he be the dealer, the trinket man, Father Blackwood bought “The Imp of the Perverse” from? It’d make sense this entity serves no other being other than himself, in the perversion of humanity. As for what this mortal wants to do with reality, it’s a bad one since he’s basically creating a Nazi regime.

Even Cthulhu made an appearance of sorts. His entry was deftly handled. He invades the dreams of others, giving them waking nightmares. A tentacle is flashed in “The Weird,” and that’s all we really need before moving on to the next Terror.

Eventually, the heroes Greendale learn they are targets of the eventual unfurling of The Void. She threatens to end existence on a multi-dimensional level. The closest entity she shares similarities with may well be Yog Shothoth. Both exist outside of time and space. While one is not actively out to destroy the cosmic order, the other is always expanding-like entropy in natural cosmology.

Between the appearances of a Wandering Jew like figure in “The Uninvited” to Lazarus in “The Returned,” the latter half of this season felt rushed. Production was already knee deep when news of cancellation fell. While I’m glad the season offered something resembling a finale, the ending is ambiguous enough to leave room for continuation. This depends on how viewers interpret the last scenes. I don’t believe Sabrina is dead. The set design suggests she’s at a way-station. In the Harry Potter films, our speckled hero was in a white room and has a choice to move on or return. So did Douxie in Tales of Arcadia: Wizards.

The paintings Spellman is admiring may well be portals to potential ways can return.

If the series can continue in another network, I’m all for it! Even a comic book will suffice (to which Nerdist confirmed). I’m left asking what role do angels and The Celestial Realm (Heaven) have in this world? Their sudden appearance mid-season needs answers, as this world is not bereft of the “holy.” They just don’t interfere with the mortal realm unless it’s about the end times, and the episode “Deux et Machina” serves to expand the mythos than start to close the series with.

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