"This is the story of how the world ended, and then did not, saved by the witch who would be queen."
Sabrina's season-three finale is just as dramatic as Ambrose's voice-over might suggest, but the young warlock doesn't get it all right. According to him, "things returned to their natural balance" by the end, but in reality, there's nothing natural at all about the temporary balance Sabrina has found.
To cut a long story short, Sabrina uses a time loop to fix everything that went wrong in season three, rescuing herself and all Greendale from the twin threats of hell and the Pagan usurpers who moseyed on into town.
So far, so good, but as we all know, Sabrina's gonna Sabrina, regardless of how dangerous the outcome might be, so instead of closing the time loop at its natural point, she revisits her past self at a different point and strikes a deal.
Torn between the mortal world of Greendale and the infernal world, Sabrina has never found peace in either. However, now that she's literally two separate people, both Sabrinas are able to agree to make the best of these worlds by splitting themselves between them.
Past Sabrina is crowned Queen of Hell, complete with a rather splendid Tudor collar, while present Sabrina is finally free to just be a teenager and enjoy her life at Baxter High. Season four onwards will presumably shift back and forth between the two, split between the two realms.
In theory, this doesn't sound too different from what's come before. The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina has always revolved around this dichotomy, following the teenage witch as she struggles to balance her life as a teenager and her life as a witch.
However, this new development is actually far more than just a literal representation of that. In the past, Sabrina has been forced to make excuses time and time again to move between these two worlds. Not only was it frustrating to keep watching her trick gullible friends and teachers alike, but it also stretched the show's credibility more than the concept of magic ever could.
Sure, we can get on board with Sabrina casting spells or talking to her cat, but the idea that she could balance life at two different schools while also saving Greendale on the regular is what really beggars belief here.
Sabrina's third season took this to the extreme, overflowing with multiple storylines which pulled its star in so many different directions at once. Thankfully, this will no longer be a problem moving forward.
Instead of keeping it up, season four will take the show back to basics. Present Sabrina will hang out with The Fright Club and help out her aunties while past Sabrina will keep the balance in hell, ensuring the mortal realm's safety.
However, things would get boring pretty fast if that's really all the future holds for Sabrina.
In the final moments of season three, Ambrose confronted Sabrina about her decision, warning her that she's now created a time paradox which could cause trouble later down the line. While we don't expect the two Sabrinas to merge anytime soon, a falling cuckoo clock ominously hinted that the youngest Spellman may have caused more damage than she first thought.
Season four may also be the first to downplay Sabrina's various love interests following that candle ritual which cut all of her emotional ties with Harvey and Nick. Caliban seems to be out of her life too in a more literal sense, but there's still plenty of love to go around on this show.
Not only will Hilda marry Doctor Cerberus next season following their engagement, but Zelda has also struck up a new relationship with Marie LaFleur while revealing that she's queer in the process. Praise Hecate!
Their kiss at the end of season three sets up the show's biggest power couple in quite a literal sense, incorporating voodoo powers into the newly formed Church of Hecate. Unfortunately, it looks like they're going to need all the help they can get in season four.
While Sabrina was able to avert the apocalypse, the time paradox she created in doing so is just one of many problems the coven will face moving forward.
Now that Past Sabrina reigns in hell, she'll soon have to reckon with Lilith and Lucifer's unholy son. Once he's born, the Dark Lord will likely use his male heir to reclaim the throne and restore patriarchal rule across the nine circles.
Honestly though, that doesn't sound too bad compared to what's coming for Present Sabrina in the mortal realm.
Now that Father Blackwood bears the Mark of Cain, he's indestructible, not to mention all of the arcane knowledge he picked up in that time bubble too. And then there's that ominous spell he cast in the season-three finale to consider as well.
By plunging a knife into the time egg, Blackwood has kickstarted "The beginning of the end... the end of the Spellmans, the end of all things." How that will play out remains to be seen, but we wouldn't be surprised if some eldritch terror crashes into our world from some hellish Lovecraftian dimension.
As it stands right now, the Church of Night's former leader is stronger and more pissed off than ever, so not even two Sabrina's might be enough to stop Blackwood and his new allies in season four. But hey, it's not the end of the world. At least, not yet, anyway.
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is now available to watch on Netflix.
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