Review: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Season 4

Over the holidays, Netflix released a fourth and final part to the teen drama series The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. First aired in 2018, it was advertised as a new take on the hit 90s sitcom Sabrina the Teenage Witch. The two series have proven to be quite different, however.  Sabrina the Teenage Witch was lighthearted and humorous as opposed to the later series, which has elements of horror and more mature themes like sex, relationships, and defying standards in a patriarchal society.

 The main character, Sabrina Spellman (Kiernan Shipka), is a junior in high school, facing adversity as she takes on a double life between the witching world and average reality. The finale of season 3 left viewers with an impending problem for the characters and fictional town of Greendale, where Sabrina manages to create a clone of herself, defying the rules of time and the universe. However, the larger issue presented throughout this season is not completely predictable until the plot takes off and viewers gain more knowledge of the complicated supernatural world.

The overarching conflict in part four seems to stand between character development and Sabrina. Because the show had previously introduced an abundance of characters with each season, the individual character arcs are abandoned.

To many, Sabrina may be a frustrating character. She proves herself to be naive and disregardful, often creating her own problems with her breezy attitude. It’s almost as if viewers can’t catch a break, as issues are condensed one after another. The seventh episode, seemingly an attempted rest from the cluttered storyline, still comes off as distracting and dissatisfying. The occasional musical numbers also do not do the circumstances justice. Instead, it adds to the cheesy feeling of many teen dramas today.

The finale of the series as a whole is surprising, yet disappointing. The remaining few minutes feel rushed, as if writers spent little time thinking about it. Without spoiling, the final events leave viewers with few ongoing mysteries, while truly signifying the conclusion of the series as a whole. From start to finish, the show was quite the ride, but perhaps not for those quickly bored by modern teen dramas. Instead, those looking for a quick series to binge with a dense storyline may be satisfied.