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    Five Thoughts on The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina‘s “Chapter Twenty: The Mephisto Waltz”

    By | June 10th, 2019
    Posted in Television | % Comments

    Welcome one and all to Multiversity’s very own ‘Witching Hour,’ in which we take a look at Netflix’s The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Join me every Monday for your weekly recap. Last week, Sabrina unknowingly fulfilled the prophecy about her raising hell by killing the Mandrake version of herself. Now the Dark Lord has risen in his Angelic form, ready to unleash hell.

    1. In the Beginning

    The episode opens with a voice over from Lilith, explaining Lucifer’s fall. She explains how they met, how perfect he was. She, the first woman and witch cast out of the garden, he a fallen angel. She describes how she had healed him, how she fell in love with him, how promises were made.

    Then we meet the devil in the flesh as portrayed by Luke Cook. He emerges from the Kinkle mines, a place that we learn later was where Lucifer first fell. Go figure, the reason all this weird shit happens in Greendale was because thousands of years ago, the Devil fell from Heaven.

    Lucifer wastes no time getting to business. He uses Dorian Gray’s bar as a kind of base of operations. Lilith comes to his beckon call, and we see a resentful Michelle Gomez as Ms. Wardwell. She’s vulnerable and when she advises Sabrina, tells the young witch that there’s no way to stop him. She’s tried. Lilith’s relationship with her Dark Master has taken an interesting turn. She was very devoted to him when the series started, but maybe seeing Sabrina fight back against her assumed roles, has inspired the centuries old mother of demons. It’s some food for thought and given how the episode ended, we’ll see if Lilith’s role continues to factor into the series.

    2. Too Much for One Episode

    I’m a fan of this show. I may have my qualms with it, but I wouldn’t review it if I had no interest. I think some episodes have lagged, some episodes were repetitive, however, the show never felt rushed, that is, until this episode. So much happens in this episode, it wouldn’t have hurt to split it in two episodes. There are some heavy bombs dropped in this episode, the big reveal is that Sabrina isn’t a Spellman, rather the spawn of Satan, the anti-christ. There’s some Rosemary’s Baby type of shit happening with Edward and Diana Spellman and the Dark Lord. That’s a big deal and it’s not given much weight in the episode. It’s brushed over to move the plot forward. But it should be a big deal. Sabrina should have some serious questions, especially for Hilda, who was Diana’s midwife and knew all along that she was neither witch nor mortal, but something more.

    Not only is Sabrina’s true parentage revealed, but she attempts to stop the Dark Lord a few times. That should have been an episode all by itself. If that wasn’t enough to put into an episode, we also discover that Nick betrayed Sabrina, in a way. If you recall, the Dark Lord may ask a witch or warlock anything and they are beholden to do so. In Nick’s case, the Dark Lord asked him to guide her on the path of night. But like any other teen drama, he truly fell in love with her.

    To further the point that there’s just too much itched in here, there’s an odd out of place rendition of Phantom of the Opera‘s “Masquerade.” It’s explained away by Lucifer’s love of the grandiose, but it kids if too me or of a key scene.

    Don’t get me wrong, this is still compelling. But it’s just so much that it feels overwhelming. To that end it felt rushed, though still satisfying. Maybe next time, they should just give them an extra episode.

    3. The Mephisto Waltz

    Let’s talk about Lucifer Morningstar, or as Sabrina calls him “Dad.” Early on we hear Lilith say he was kind once, that he promised her everything. She really got the short end of the stick and she tells the Dark Lord that. He reminds her that she should be subservient to him. Hey doesn’t he sound like Blackwood? You would think these two would get along. The Dark Lord actually chastises Blackwood so badly that the guy literally goes insane and decides to kill his whole coven just because he feels so threatened by Sabrina, a teenage witch.

    Continued below

    As villains go, Lucifer is the bad guy. Luke Cook presents Lucifer as confident, powerful, and arrogant. In fact, Sabrina, with the help of her family and Wardwell, try to kill the Dark Lord with a couple of blessed daggers, supposedly from the birthplace of Christianity. Wardwell tells the Spellmans to stab him where his wings once hung. Unfortunately this doesn’t work. He threatens to kill Sabrina’s family unless she blows the Horn of Gabriel to open the gates of hell and kick-starting the apocalypse.

    Sabrina then tries to hold off her coronation by trapping Lucifer in her father’s acheron configuration which seems to work, but ultimately fails again.

    4. This is the End

    With the acheron configuration unable to contain the Dark Lord, Wardwell momentarily stalls him. She tells Sabrina that the configuration can not hold him, but mortal flesh may be able to, as it’s the most powerful prison. Sabrina, as always, is prepared to do the deed, but in a moment of redemption from Nick, he volunteers his body to host the Dark Lord, saying he’s the most powerful conjurer since Edward Spelmman (I think his ego may be a little big).

    So Lucifer is trapped in Nick’s body and Lilith tells everybody that the safest place for him is in hell with her, residing as queen. In fact, Sabrina relinquishes her crown to Wardwell immediately. Finally Wardwell/Lilith has what she’s wanted her entire life. She has power and freedom, freedom from the Dark Lord. She bestows two gifts to Sabrina. She returns the powers she lost to mandrake. And at the end of the episode we see the real Mary Wardwell return, like almost a year after she was taken over by Lilith. Try explaining that one.

    The Doors’ “The End” plays in the background as we see glimpses of possible future storylines. Ambrose and Prudence are on the hunt for Father Blackwood, who’s taken his children and fled like a coward. Zelda will act as High Priestess in the Church of (maybe) Lilith, with Hilda by her side. This all has a sense of finality to it. At least this part, the whole Sabrina apocalypse bit that started with her dark baptism back in season one. Maybe the Dark Lord will no longer be a concern to our heroes. Maybe more cosmic (hopefully) threats will arise. That’s my hope anyway. And to combat them, well that brings me to my final point.

    5. Fright Club

    There’s only one rule in fright club. Don’t call it fright club. Holy hell. I just… I don’t know Harvey, you poor sonuvagun. So by the end of this episode, Sabrina and her friends finally decide to band together to fight the forces of evil. Roz, Theo and Harvey are all there by Sabrina’s side. And while there superhero team name sounds corny, these mortals pulled off a huge task.

    Earlier in the episode after Sabrina blew the horn of Gabriel, the hoards of hell were to escape from the Kinkle mine, but using the Cunning, Roz was able to help Harvey use his artistic abilities to create sigils that kept the doors closed for the time being. It bought Sabrina enough time to come up with her trapping scheme.

    Without the mortals, Sabrina would never have won, Hell would rule on Earth and we wouldn’t have a season three to look forward to. As it was, the mortals actually did something, a trend that I’m starting to like, and now that Sabrina has her gang of frighters(?), she plans on going to hell and rescuing Nick.

    So that’s a wrap on season two of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. While this season had its shares of ups and downs, even within this episode, overall I’m a fan and eagerly await the next season to see what kind of magical mischief our gang gets into next.

    ‘Til then, it’s been fun.


    //TAGS | The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

    Matt Garza

    Matt was born and raised on the south side of Chicago, but is really a Cubs fan. When he's not reading comics and writing about them, watching the Cubs or playing Dungeons & Dragons with his roommate, he's most likely sleeping next to his dog. Despite several warnings, he will never stop giving the children in his family superhero clothing. You can find him on Twitter here.

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