Kiernan Shipka on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina ending: ‘I loved it’ (spoilers)

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Spoilers for the end of season 4 of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
I’ve been waiting all year for the final season of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina to finally drop on Netflix. After several months of delays, the last episodes were released on December 31. Season 3 ended with Sabrina creating a sort of time-loop paradox after meeting a earlier version of herself in Hell. Instead of killing the second Sabrina, they both decided that the real Sabrina would live out a normal life and finish high school as Sabrina Spellman while the time loop duplicate would become Sabrina Morningstar and co-rule hell. This paradox opened the natural world to the “eldrich terrors” which are beings that have been around since the beginning of time. Now both Sabrinas, the coven, Sabrina’s aunties and friends must face off and destroy these terrors in season 4.

Kiernan Shipka who plays Sabrina is interviewed for Inverse. She discussed how she loved playing two Sabrinas, how she eventually accepted Sabrina’s ending by letting her go, and the fun she had filming several episodes with Beth Broderick and Caroline Rhea, Aunt Zelda and Hilda respectively, from the original Sabrina the Teenage Witch cast. Below are a few excerpts from her interview with Inverse (spoilers ahead):

“I am satisfied,” Shipka tells Inverse of Sabrina’s ending. “There were moments where I found myself thinking, ‘Is this the ending that I want? Because this is the ending that we’re getting.’ And I did. I loved it.”

“Every character has been up and down. We really took risks and did so much,” added Jaz Sinclair, who plays Sabrina’s friend Rosalind Walker. “While I would love to continue playing in this world because it’s so fun, I definitely feel satisfied with where and how it’s wrapping up, and all of the juicy episodes that we’re giving fans.”

The series finale of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina will likely prompt a myriad of emotions from fans. The cast says it was tough on them, too. Still, Lachlan Watson — who plays Theo Putnam, Sabrina’s friend and a member of the Fright Club band — believes it’s the right time to leave the characters behind.

“The characters are probably pretty exhausted. They just need regular years [and] a break,” Watson jokes. “For the actors, we could have used a lot more time to explore and learn. We didn’t get a lot of closure, but I think our characters [did].”

“You get close to these characters and when I talk about Sabrina, I’m not talking about myself playing her, I’m talking about her,” Shipka explains. “They become friends, confidants, and vehicles in which you express your emotions. To let go of that is hard, but it’s also beautiful. I was forever grateful that I had Sabrina during two very big years of my life. She got me through.”

“I felt like I knew Sabrina Spellman so well that I could take little bits and craft this alternate version of her. I think about who would I be if I grew up differently in a different place, and that to me is who Sabrina Morningstar is to Sabrina Spellman. Sabrina has always grappled with her duality, so to actually split Sabrina was really powerful.”

[From Inverse]

I have been waiting all damn year for this season because I knew it would be the last one. It took me a few tries to get into the new season. For me, the season was chaotic AF and it wasn’t until episode two or three that I figured out what was going on and why. I feel like this season of Sabrina was similar to the last season of Game of Thrones. It seemed to be thrown together by writers with a neat and senseless ending where the main character dies unnecessarily. Honestly, I am still trying to figure out where Sabrina was. Was this very beige, very colorless place heaven or a sort of purgatory? It would honestly be hell for me. It would seem that I wasn’t the only one who felt that Sabrina’s death was unnecessary. Sabrina and her fans deserved better.

I did love the Twilight Zone episodes that Sabrina Morningstar was trapped in with the original Aunts Zelda and Hilda. That bit of throw back was genius and it just felt right to include those who made the series popular. I also love how the coven stopped worshipping Satan and started worshipping the goddess Hecate. There’s something very powerful to have a coven of witches, male and female, worshipping a feminine deity versus the cliched Lucifer Morningstar. Our good sisters Tati Gabrielle (Prudence) and Jaz Sinclair (Rosalind) definitely came into their own during this season and I felt more connected to their characters than Sabrina. I also love that Sabrina and Nick ended up together at the end.

I may rewatch the season to see if my dislike of it was because I was distracted while watching it or if my initial reaction to it was accurate. Overall, I really liked how the writers took the original material of Sabrina the Teenage Witch which was more a comedy and made it more dark, campy, and dramatic. The cast and writers should be proud of the universe they were able to create. Halloween is my favorite holiday and I looked forward to new seasons of Sabrina dropping every year around that time so I hate seeing the show go. I hope Netflix is developing another show to fill the void that Sabrina is leaving.

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photos courtesy of Netflix and via Instagram

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13 Responses to “Kiernan Shipka on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina ending: ‘I loved it’ (spoilers)”

  1. Sabrina says:

    I also did not like the ending and the final season was a let-down for me compared to previous seasons. It was however great to see the actresses who first played Aunt Hilda & Aunt Zelda in the show.

  2. Laalaa says:

    It should be said that Kiernan is a lovely woman, I feel so proud of her, lol! She was really just a child in Mad Men, and she literally grew up on the screen. It’s nice to see she is a level-headed person

  3. Stacy Dresden says:

    I really enjoyed this show.

  4. NoNoK says:

    I am so sad this show is over and the ending was very much a letdown for me. However, the Hecate worship was very inspiring and I got some new books to learn a little more so, not all bad!

  5. FancyPants says:

    I actually thought this season was the most coherent and Sabrina was the least annoying this time around. I watch for basically all the other actresses who are strong characters, plus the fashion/hair & makeup. I loved the meta episode on the set of the show with the old tv show aunties!

  6. LeonsMomma says:

    Though I haven’t seen all of season 4 — am ok reading the spoilers — I have liked it so far. And I only watched maybe 1 or 2 episodes of season 3 and got bored, and it was easy for me to jump back into 4.
    This happens with series I like— Lost and Game of Thrones, for example—and then years later oddly enough i start watching them all over again and get
    to see new stuff.

    Have to say, Lost is still really solid.

  7. SpankyB says:

    I couldn’t get into this show. I barely made it through the first episode. I think I was expecting it to be more campy like the TV show, or at least a little bit of humor. Maybe I’ll give it a second chance with the knowledge that it’s dark, not funny.

  8. Ashley says:

    I thought it was great, and reminded me about how Buffy was supposed to end at Season 5. Good writing!!

  9. Amelie says:

    I enjoyed this new iteration of Sabrina and I watched all 4 seasons. I enjoyed the darker tone, the campiness, and the teenage drama. However I also think this season was my least favorite. Maybe I have to go back and watch the earlier seasons, but I found this season trying to cram in so much stuff in 8 episodes. A lot of characters didn’t have much to do like Sabrina’s mortal friends, especially Harvey and Theo. Roz actually had a little more agency when they threw in she was actually a witch too. And then they wrote off Mambo Marie’s character in a weird way and turns out she’s an underworld God or whatever? Also Prudence was simply reduced to getting revenge on her father which was really blah, Lucifer was just kind of there, and Lilith, probably my fave character, didn’t have much going on either (though the way she gets revenge on Lucifer is pretty on target yet so disturbingly cruel).

    My favorite episode was definitely the endless TV show set with the original aunts from the 90s sitcom. That one was a lot of fun and I was okay with the absence of Melissa Joan Hart, though that would have been an added bonus. I didn’t like the ending either, it felt rushed and thrown together and I never really thought Sabrina and Nicolas had any chemistry (I didn’t think she had any chemistry with Harvey either lol). So when Nicolas made his profound declaration “Sabrina, we’re endgame” I was laughing my head off. I will miss Greendale though, especially the aunties, Prudence, Ambrose, and Lilith. I basically loved all the side characters!

  10. BeeCee says:

    I just….. I just hated it

    I honestly fast forwarded though SO much. The writing was awful. And I really disliked the whole side story line with Harvey, Ros, and Theo.. I had to skip so much of season 4 because it was just bad.

    My favourite episode was definitely the sitcom episode though. Seeing Beth Broderick and Caroline Rhea was AMAZING and brought back such good memories from the original show.

    The ending felt like a cop-out. Big white room sitting and reading.. I like that Nick was with her… but because he drowned? It was terrible writing, and still left the door open for questions as to what happens to Sabrina now, because to just be stuck in that room forever makes no sense.

  11. serena says:

    I hope they’ll do a movie or something else to wrap up the show because that ending was literally shit. I loved the show, and although some parts were a little ‘meh’, overall it was exciting and to making Sabrina die that way felt rushed and stupid. Not even talking about Nick, who basically killed himself?? No, it deserved better.

  12. Big Bertha says:

    Lilith killed her baby. WTF.

  13. Wiglet Watcher says:

    I just saw it and.. I liked it. The devil getting banished from hell by Lilith was weird. And we never found out more about how Sabrina’s parents died. But most things were tied up.

    Sabrina went to The Sweet Hereafter which is probably the celestial plain? I think this was explained when Roz was getting a crash course in witchcraft and the planets. Infernal, mortal, celestial realm… right?

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