Sabrina Star Foretells Murky Future
Oh, my stars! Looks like Melissa Joan Hart may need real sorcery to keep Sabrina, the Teenage Witch on TV for much longer. This year, the WB did not order a full season's worth (22 episodes) of the campy sitcom and that's always a bad omen...
"First, we got 13 episodes, we just got another six and we're waiting on the back three," Hart explains to TV Guide Online. "I guess we have a really expensive show, and for the price of our show, the WB could put two other shows in pilots. The WB doesn't care about us at all because no one there created the show. They kind of just bought it to make their money. Because nobody there backs our show, nobody there is fully supporting it or putting their neck out for it.
"It's a price thing," Sabrina's producer and star continues, "and it's a pretty crappy way to treat a show as old as we are, but it happens. They've tried putting other shows in our timeslot and failed miserably. It's us along with Reba holding up Friday night now, but for a long time it was just us, even though they're ignoring us and not giving us any promotion."
"The WB has been supportive of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch since the day we acquired it," counters a WB spokesman. "Promotional priorities shift from week to week and season to season at a network, and we're always looking for good comedy to highlight in our spots. Sabrina remains an important show for the WB."
The TV witch has "no idea" whether Sabrina will be renewed for an eighth season, but she's brewing up a plan to end this season "on a note that could send the show into an entirely new direction." Hart won't say more, except that "it would be an entirely adult show. I don't know if the WB or the audience is ready for it." Such a tease!
In tonight's episode, Sabrina takes an anti-smoking stance. "My little sister, Emily, comes back in her role as Sabrina's cousin, Amanda," Hart previews. "She's constantly using smoke with her magic. Every time she pops in somewhere, she's in a puff of smoke." Natch, Sabrina puts a stop to this after she "looks into Amanda's future and sees that she's dead from secondhand smoke. I guess witches can die of second-hand smoke even if they live 500 years!"