[Warning: The following contains spoilers for Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Part 3. Read at your own risk!]
Chilling Adventures of SabrinaSeason 3 premiered on Netflix Friday, and it quickly proved to be the wildest installment of the teen drama yet. In the third outing of the Riverdale companion series, which the streaming service dubs Part 3, the series delivered crazy twists, complex mythology, lots of dating drama, and even some toe-tapping musical numbers sprinkled throughout.
was a wild show already, Season 3 took it to a whole new level. In its third outing, which Netflix calls Part 3, the teen drama delivered its craziest and most complicated season yet.
After rescuing Nick (Gavin Leatherwood) from Hell, Sabrina (Kiernan Shipka) winds up becoming its queen. However, she finds her reign threatened by the clay prince Caliban (Sam Corlett), and the duo compete in a series of challenges to win the throne. When Sabrina isn't hunting down the items that make up the Unholy Regalia as part of this competition, she's cheering for Baxter High, fighting with her boyfriend, and -- oh yeah -- facing off with a pagan carnival that wants to sacrifice a virgin to resurrect their god, The Green Man, and slaughter the coven.
To make matters tricker, the coven can't even fight back, since the Dark Lord (Luke Cook) stopped bestowing their magical gifts upon them after they betrayed him in Season 2. But Zelda (Miranda Otto) has an epiphany and transforms the coven into The Order of Hecate, instructing the young witches and warlocks to begin praying to the goddess of witchcraft and magic, who does restore their powers. Thanks to this -- and the fact that Sabrina TIME TRAVELS to undo the apocalypse (more on that below) -- they're able to defeat the pagans and save the day. However, Sabrina decides to ignore all the rules of time travel and allows both her past and future selves to live so she can live two lives: one as Queen of Hell and one as a high school student. Plus, there's also that whole cliffhanger where Father Blackwood (Richard Coyle) hatches an eldritch terror that has the potential to destroy the world.
It was one hell of a ride, but it left a ton of loose ends we'll be pondering during the hiatus before Season 4. Check out the seven biggest burning questions we have -- including some insights from creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa as to how they may be answered -- after watching Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Season 3.
When Sabrina's future self kickstarted the time loop, she left her past self with precise instructions on how to complete the loop so as to avoid threatening the very fabric of time and space. However, as Sabrina is wont to do, she ignored those instructions and decided to allow both herself and her temporal doppelgänger to live, with the one who stopped the apocalypse returning to high school and the one who never got trapped in the 9th Circle to begin with becoming Queen of Hell. Ambrose (Chance Perdomo) warned Sabrina that this time paradox would come with grave consequences -- and he wasn't kidding.
There are some theories about time paradoxes that imply Sabrina's actions could threaten the entire universe, while others suggest they may only result in undoing her existence while the larger universe remains protected. Neither sounds like a great option, TBH! Ultimately, we're guessing only one Sabrina is going to be able to survive, which means she'll likely have to make her choice: Does she want to be a regular teenage witch or the Queen of Hell? Sabrina has always avoided making choices like this, so it will be interesting how this tension plays out next season between the two Sabrinas.
After Zelda returned from Limbo, she converted the coven to the Order of Hecate, which worships the Greek goddess of magic and witchcraft, Hecate, who represents all stages in a witch's life. It was an empowering moment to see the coven reclaim their powers and become fully independent from the Dark Lord and the patriarchal Church of Night, and this positive change will continue into Part 4. Aguirre-Sacasa teased that next season we'll "really see the coven blossoming in its worship of Hecate."
However, given that Past Sabrina is now Queen of Hell and ruling alongside the Dark Lord and Future Sabrina is a member of the order of Hecate, it will be interesting to see how the two Sabrinas may potentially clash over their now opposing alignments.
The season ended with Blackwood, Agatha (Adeline Rudolph), Judas, and Judith hatching the time egg he received in Scotland, and the former Dark Priest warned that this would bring about the end of everything. So what was it? The answer lies in all the references this season to horror author H.P. Lovecraft, specifically to the eldritch terrors Blackwood kept speaking off. (Lovecraft was also a well-documented white supremacist, so it will be interesting to see if the show tackles that at all next season.)
In Lovecraftian horror, an eldritch abomination is a creature so other that it defies the laws of reality as we understand it. These things, often embodied in the forms of ancient alien gods known as the Great Old Ones, play into the fear of the unknowable, making people feel completely inconsequential and helpless in the face of these vast and powerful cosmic forces that rule the universe. So has Blackwood switched from serving the Dark Lord to one of these Great Old Ones, seemingly the Void he twice mentions paying tribute to? Could this void be connected to Thasaidon, The Master of the Endless Void, or Uvhash, The Blood Mad God of the Void, from Lovecraft's Chtuhlu Mythos? And does this mean Sabrina is really going to give us an ancient alien god to fight next season? We hope so, because that sounds kind of incredible! Give us the citizens of Heaven, Hell, and Earth all having to team up against an ancient alien god next season because why the hell not?
The season finale saw Sabrina trap Caliban in the 9th Circle of Hell and declare him dead, but is this really the last we've seen of the clay prince? Absolutely not. He did survive being stuck in the Pontius Pilate time loop (again, he's made of clay), so we expect he'll find a way to survive the 9th Circle. Or maybe someone will even release him if they're in need of his aid for some plot-convenient reason or another. Either way, we weren't surprised when Aguirre-Sacasa confirmed that Caliban will return next season and that "his relationship with Sabrina will deepen a lot." Given all the hints of romantic tension between Sabrina and Caliban in Part 3, maybe that offer of marriage isn't off the table after all?
Speaking of romances, this season jammed a ton of relationship drama in these eight episodes. Sabrina and Nick broke up, Sabrina did a spell to stop having feelings for Nick and Harvey (Ross Lynch), Harvey and Roz (Jaz Sinclair) had sex, Theo (Lachlan Watson) started dating Robin (Jonathan Whitesell), Hilda (Lucy Davis) and Dr. Cee (Alessandro Juliani) got engaged, Prudence (Tati Gabrielle) and Ambrose broke up, and Zelda started a relationship with the voodoo priestess Marie (Skye P. Marshall). That's a lot to process! So what happens now?
According to Aguirre-Sacasa, the fact that Prudence and Nick find comfort in each other "doesn't mean that they're going to necessarily get together completely or stay together completely. Though, there is drama with them for sure." But now that there are two Sabrinas, that means there are double the opportunities for her to make trouble for her exes and get caught up in complicated love triangles/squares/pentagons/hexagons. This also means we might see each Sabrina in relationships with two different men, the thought of which gives us an immediate headache.
We know this would never happen, but we wish next season would lay off the Sabrina romances a bit so that we'd actually get more time to fully explore the other romantic matches in this show -- specifically Harvey and Roz, Theo and Robin, and Zelda and Marie. There are so many interesting dynamics to explore in all of the non-Sabrina relationships, and we hope having double the Sabrina dating opportunities won't take away screentime from these other couples.
The only reason Lilith (Michelle Gomez) is alive is that the Dark Lord won't harm his unborn son, but once the child is born she'll need to find other ways to protect herself. One of the easiest ways to do this would be to put her son in a position of power and use his power as a shield for herself -- and perhaps a stepping stone to gain a bit more power for herself. Aguirre-Sacasa did reveal to us that a big part of Lilith's journey next season is aimed at getting "that much closer to the throne," which isn't surprising but also should be a concern of Sabrina's.
If Lilith's ultimate goal is still to reign as Queen of Hell, Sabrina, who now shares the throne with the Dark Lord, is once again a big obstacle in her way. After a season in which Lilith and Sabrina were largely aligned, we aren't thrilled at the idea of them potentially being at odds again, even if it feels quite inevitable. Then again, given that there are two Sabrinas, maybe Lilith will team up with one while working against the other, which could be a lot of fun to watch!
Up until this season, Prudence always had the support and community of her two sisters, Dorcas (Abigail Cowen) and Agatha. But now the leader of the Weird Sisters is on her own after Agatha, driven mad by Pan, killed Dorcas and became a follower of Blackwood, along with his two brainwashed children Judas and Judith (who are now also teenagers thanks to the magic of the time egg). We barely got to know Judas and Judith this season outside their fanatical devotion to their father, including their willingness to die in order to help him achieve his goals, but we have a feeling Prudence won't rest until she does whatever is in her power to rescue her family from Blackwood -- and get her revenge. And who knows, maybe Nick will help her on this quest!
Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is available to stream on Netflix.