Just in case you needed further proof that the upcoming Sabrina the Teenage Witch reboot will be pitch black, then look no further than series creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's latest tweet. Aguirre-Sacasa shared a first look at the concept art for the Sabrina reboot, and even Aunt Hilda would be freaked out by the imagery. The artwork offers a glimpse at the tone of Netflix's upcoming take on your favorite teenage witch, and it's nothing like the cheery '90s sitcom that Sabrina Spellman fans may have become accustomed to growing up.
Sabrina has received a major makeover since the Melissa Joan Hart series. Where that series was closer to the Sabrina that emerged from the Archie comic strip, this Sabrina is inspired by Aguirre-Sacasa's The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina comics. And those stories are less about the hijinks of being a teenage witch and more about ritual sacrifices.
At the beginning of December, Netflix gave the untitled Sabrina reboot a two-season order. Originally, the series was in contention at The CW as a possible companion piece for Riverdale, but Sabrina's move to the streaming giant may mean the show will be able to adhere closer to the chilling tone of the comics. The first piece of concept art from production designer Lisa Soper seems to back that idea up. In the photo, Sabrina is seen in a forest where the trees have grown in an especially creepy manner. The young witch is headed toward a clearing in the middle of the woods where a fire is raging.
If you've been gathering every detail about the reboot that you can, then this eerie scene may seem familiar. That's because it evokes the imagery from the pilot script page that Aguirre-Sacasa shared in October. In the scene, Sabrina leads her high school sweetheart Harvey out into the woods to share her witchy secret with him.
According to Digital Spy, the excerpt from the script reads,
"I... wanted you to see where I was born, Harvey. Not in Greendale General, like it says on my birth certificate. Here. In this grove of trees. Almost 16 years ago. And, uhm, where I'll be reborn this Saturday night. On my birthday. At the stroke of midnight. In the middle of a penumbral lunar eclipse. The kind that only happens once every 66 years. That's why I can't go to Rosalind's Halloween party this weekend."
It could be a coincidence, but the scene and the artwork match up nicely, despite Harvey being nowhere in sight. Together, these two pieces of information create an atmosphere that's spooky to say the very least. When you remember that the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina features Satanic rituals, a splash of cannibalism, and a super unsettling possession arc, this vibe isn't too surprising.
Just because this version of Sabrina lives in a much darker world than Hart's take on the character, that doesn't mean the series will be all drama, all the time. The Hashtag Show reportedly got their hands on the casting sides for the Netflix series, and if their reported character descriptions prove to be true, then the new Sabrina should have a good mix of scares and laughs. Check out the reported description of Sabrina,
"Sabrina is an empowered young woman, half-human, half-witch, struggling to reconcile her dual natures. She is just beginning her dark education as a sorceress, even as she tries to maintain some semblance of a normal life as a sophomore at Baxter High. Sabrina’s intelligent, compassionate, and brave to the point of recklessness. She challenges witch-doctrine at every turn. She is fiercely loyal to her family and friends; wickedly funny; and in the middle of a star-crossed romance with her classmate Harvey Kinkle. Sabrina is all that stands between us and the Forces of Darkness that threaten our world."
The character sounds like the perfect cross between Buffy and Riverdale's Veronica — and if that's the case, then bring on dark Sabrina, because the world needs another snarky, kind, and kickbutt supernatural hero.