All may be calm, but all is not bright when Chilling Adventures of Sabrina returns for its fourth and final season on Netflix.
2020 may not have been the best, but we were lucky enough to get two seasons of the series in the span of one year.
The beginning of the end introduces audiences to a rather calm Greendale; it’s so calm that the Fright Club hasn’t had a reason to get together and Sabrina is actually questioning her decision to stay in this realm rather than reign as the Queen of Hell. She even entertains the idea of paying Sabrina Morningstar a quick visit in Hell, but Ambrose immediately shuts it down informing his Coz that there may be cataclysmic dangers to the two of them being in the same place at the same time.
Without no evil to ward off, Sabrina is feeling rather useless and alone, especially as all her friends are coupled up. Roz and Harvey are still smitten with each other, Puck and Theo are still going strong, and Nick and Prudence are heating up. So, it’s not surprising that Sabrina is feeling single AF.
To curb her boredom, Hilda gives her a not-so-brilliant idea: give the Fright Club a spooky reason to get back together.
With Salem’s help, Sabrina conjures up Bloody Mary a.k.a everyone middle school millennial’s biggest fear. The show’s Bloody Mary works similarly to the urban legend that floated throughout the halls: if you say “Bloody Mary” three times in the mirror and she shows up.
When Billy takes to the halls screaming after his encounter with the frightening, bloodied ghost, the Fright Club doesn’t waste time eagerly leaping back into action to protect their town.
However, despite Bloody Marry’s chilling demeanor, the whole scene is rather anti-climatic.
After the Fright Club successfully helped fend off the Pagan’s, this “threat” is like beginner’s monster-hunting for them.
Harvey, who gets all of Bloody Mary’s guts splattered on him in a moment he calls “amazing,” and Theo don’t catch on to the facade as quickly as Roz does thanks to her cunning.
She confronts Sabrina about the staged “evil,” and Sabrina confesses that she did it because she missed her friends, which leads Roz to acknowledge the sad but real reality that they’re all changing and growing up. They’ll always be friends, but they’re going to drift and go in their own directions. It’s a harsh realization for Sabrina, who is used to being at the center of everything for the past few seasons (which have really only spanned a year, believe it or not!)
Of course, this is Greendale, so the boredom doesn’t last for long. Spectral miners, soldiers of the Absolute Darkness – the first Eldritch Terror seemingly summoned by Faustus Blackwood, now the leader of the Pilgrims of the Night church – have descended upon the small town to snuff out all the light.
Their darkness is suffocating and preys on everyone’s biggest insecurities and fears. All of the Spellmans have a brush in with the miners. Ambrose and Sabrina spot them knocking out lights around town, while Zelda and Hilda come face-to-face with one that has infiltrated the Academy of the Unseen Arts.
Ambrose and Sabrina astral-project the the source of the darkness: the 1943 disaster that saw miners dying in darkness, but they quickly retreat when they realize they aren’t physically or emotionally prepared.
When the power goes out across Greendale, Ambrose, Sabrina, Nick and Prudence quickly concoct a plan to confront the first terror before the darkness consumes Greendale and shortly, the rest of the world.
Ambrose’s plan is to attack the darkness on multiple fronts.
Nick eagerly teams up with the Fright Club to lure out the miners with light so that they are not an obstacle. Prudence seeks out the help of Zelda, her lover Mambo Marie, and the rest of the coven, who now worship the Dark Mother Hecate.
And Sabrina gets her wish as she visits Sabrina Morningstar in Hell and asks for her to join her as she travels to the center of the darkness so they can get illuminate it from within.
Hell is one heck of a party as Sabrina witnesses prom night, which Sabrina Morningstar says happens every night. Okay, so maybe hell really is hell disguised as “fun.” Who wants to do prom night every night!?
Sabrina Morningstar agrees to help Sabrina because “a threat to one is a threat to both.” She’s the first to go into the void.
But even the Queen of Hell isn’t immune to being tormented and dragged down by her insecurities. In the same way that intrusive thoughts work in real life, Sabrina Morningstar begins to believe the voice that’s repetitively vocalizing her biggest fears such as no one loving her.
When the light begins to dim again, Sabrina enters the void and finds Sabrina Morningstar in shambles. She attempts to convince her to ignore the negative self-talk, and the duo once again begin to snuff out the darkness together as the voice intensifies in an attempt to shut them down.
Ambrose notices that the Sabrinas are being overpowered and calls upon Prudence and the rest of the coven to help two “sister’s” out.
Of course, poor Zelda and Hilda had no idea that Sabrina was literally inside the darkness, but when do they ever truly know what she’s up to?
Hearing the support of their Aunties and the coven, Sabrina and Sabrina Morningstar gain the strength and confidence to successfully defeat the first Eldritch terror and save Greendale.
Faustus Blackwood tells Sister Julia (previously known as Agatha) that while they didn’t succeed with darkness engulfing the planet, there are still eight other terrors and each one more harrowing than the next.
As Blackwood plots Greendale’s demise, Sabrina agrees to go on two dates with “inexperienced” Carl from Baxter High and Melvin from the Academy. Two boyfriends for Sabrina? She’s always up for the challenge.
After saving the world yet again, Sabrina and Sabrina Morningstar vow to keep their friendship a secret and celebrate with a little dance party together.
Other Important Moments
- Wardwell doesn’t seem to be doing all that well and turning to alcohol to drown her demons. Of course, this makes her an easy target for the Pilgrims of the Night church as she attends one of Blackwood’s seminars and then successfully embraces the darkness so that she doesn’t die. Does she remember what happened to her?
- Zelda and Mambo Marie are together and getting hot and heavy.
- Hilda and Dr. Cerebrus are the cutest.
- Riverdale apparently has condom machines in school, which is fitting if you’ve ever seen an episode of Riverdale.
‘Feel Good’ Season 2 Packs Quite the Punch
In Season 2, the final adaptation of comedian Mae Martin’s (they/them) semi-autobiographical comedy, Feel Good takes on much more content in its short six episodes, packing quite the punch.
We’re guided deeper through the traumas of the primary character Mae and left wondering how they’re able to stand on their own two feet after years of childhood grooming, drug addiction, and parental toxicity.
The light answer to this is humor. As it’s joked often throughout the episodes, “comics are supposed to be sacks of shit.” Through light-hearted comedy and the power of laughter, Mae’s story is dissected. However, at times, big topics are rushed and viewers are left grasping at strings, wishing there were more episodes in the season.
Following an unfortunate relapse in Season 1, we’re immediately thrown into Mae’s life in Canada, as they’re about to reenter rehab. They’ve only been away from England for a couple of months, but with the fresh wounds of the breakup, both George (Charlotte Ritchie) and Mae aren’t healed and are still stuck in their desire for each other. I mean, Mae still has George’s photo on their nightstand!
While in rehab, Mae reconnects with an old “friend,” Scott. When he’s first introduced we’re left wondering who he is and what his role is in Mae’s life. As an addict and queer comedian, there’s much more behind Mae’s curtain of trauma than initially presented in Season 1. Much more trauma that’s led to rash behavior, and Mae’s conversation with Audrey, easily foreshadows this.
Intertwined with the main storyline, Mae’s also navigating their non-binary identity. Mirroring Martin’s own coming-out as non-binary, Mae’s figuring it out, explaining that they see themselves as more of a Ryan Goslin or Adam Driver.
Again, with only six episodes to squeeze so much storyline into, Mae’s rehab stint only lasts 15 minutes into the first episode before they’re running out the door back into the arms of Scott.
As Mae’s stumbling through life in Canada, George is also trying to keep her mind focused on things like saving the bees. At an event at her school, she meets Elliot, a bisexual, polyamorous man with whom she bonds. He’s the nice guy, maybe too nice for George. He’s one of those men who are self-proclaimed progressive and ultra-feminist, trying to mansplain the harm in porn’s presentation of women and how sex needs to be a safe space for connection.
And as Mae knows, that’s definitely not how George likes to be treated during sex. Thankfully, George and Mae reconnect, and Elliot is quickly out of the picture with Mae and George recreating their first meet-cute, hoping to restart from a fully healed wound.
As Feel Good is written by a queer person, the portrayal of queer sex is finally construed in a realistic and non-hypersexualized manner. Mae and George run through various role-playing scenarios as they are falling into what seems to be a healthy relationship.
Realistically, their timeline is rushed, but Mae needed some stability before they faced the bigger demons hiding under the bed.
The show cleverly depicts Mae’s moments of withdrawal and trauma responses through a high-pitched ringing sound. As if we’re inside Mae’s head. Originally, Mae experienced the ringing sound when they were with George, as George was a replacement drug. But, in this season, the ringing sound appeared whenever the past tried to resurface.
Mae told Audrey that they had a hard time remembering the past, that it was all like a jumbly tumbly mess of Tupperware containers. But, as the episodes progress, each Tupperware slowly found its way to its matching lid.
It becomes clear that Scott isn’t just an old friend, but a man who used to abuse and take advantage of Mae. After Mae’s kicked out of the house at a young age for drug addiction, they move in with Scott who presents himself as a safe haven and gateway to Mae’s comedic success. When, in reality, he’s a pedophile who’s grooming them.
When a woman calls Mae to talk about Scott, presumably about the things he did to both of them in the past, Mae’s reminded of the trauma they had compartmentalized. A doctor suggests Mae might have PTSD, and with George’s help, they begin the journey of confronting the harmful past.
Meanwhile, through all of the personal traumas, Mae’s working through their professional success after being signed with an agent and fulfilling their dream of TV comedy. However, Mae finds it challenging to reinvent their success from the original standup virality that got them the agent in the first place. As mentioned earlier, with comics, the butt of their jokes is their own trauma.
Unfortunately, as Mae hasn’t healed from their trauma, there’s no way they can make light of it yet. As their career goes for a bit of a downhill turn, and they have a hard time performing for an audience, they begin to seclude themselves and withdraw from the world.
In a much-needed getaway, Mae, George, and Phil take a trip to Canada in order for Mae to confront Scott.
The scene in which Mae directly tells Scott they never want to speak to them again, although a bit anticlimactic, was retrospectively a strong scene that finalized Mae’s character arc in the perfect ending to a witty, raw, and endearing show.
The final episode leaves Mae leaps and bounds beyond where they had been before on their road to recovery. And just as Mae’s love for George grew healthily from a need to a want, our need for a Season 3 resolved itself, and we feel good saying our final goodbyes to Mae and George, knowing fully well they are on their way to a fresh start.
‘Elite’ Season 4 Review: New Students, New Mystery, Same Scandalous Drama
The wait is almost over.
On June 18, Elite returns for its fourth season, but aside from a few new faces and a new principal hellbent on making a difference, things at Las Encinas haven’t changed much at all.
In fact, things are more dramatic than ever.
The premiere of Elite evokes the same feelings as the start of the school year — there’s a rush of excitement for what’s to come.
The series indulges in more of what has made it such a success: scandal, parties, threesomes, love triangles, intrigue, crime, and sex. So. Much. Sex.
I always forget just how many vivid sex scenes there are until I get pulled into a new season, but I’m very quickly reminded.
The first day of school for Guzman (Miguel Bernardeau), Samu (Itzan Escamilla), Ander (Arón Piper), Rebeka (Claudia Salas), Cayetana (Georgina Amorós), and Omar (Omar Ayuso) is bittersweet. While they may be getting another shot at repeating their final year, their classmates Carla, Lu, Nadia, and Valerio have moved on to bigger and better things. It’s a bummer to lose such a great group of characters, but you almost don’t feel their absence when the new crop of students takes their place, flips the world upside down for current students, and simultaneously ushers in a brand new mystery.
The new mystery anchors the story, and like in seasons past, it plays out with flashbacks that lead up to the fated moment.
However, unlike in previous seasons, we find out pretty early on who is at the center of the mystery with the how remaining the big question mark.
But there’s no question about whether the Blanco family is involved.
As Ander tells the investigator, the toxic family’s arrival “tainted everything.”
Benjamin (Diego Martin) is the extremely rich new school director. He comes in like a bulldozer with big plans to rehabilitate Las Encinas and its reputation after a tumultuous few years that led to two student deaths. He begins his reign by setting his sights on Samu and Omar, who he doesn’t believe belong at the elite school.
It’s honestly surprising anyone wants to send their children to get an education there at this point.
Benjamin doesn’t waste any time making changes, but with his focus solely on “discipline, excellence, and achievement,” he fails to realize that his family’s arrival brings the bulk of the drama.
Immediately, you begin to wonder how Benjamin plans to fix a whole school if he can’t even control his own children — Ari (Carla Diaz), Patrick (Manu Rios), and Mencia (Martina Cariddi).
Benjamin has a fraught relationship with his youngest, Mencia, who has brought the family pain in the past and continues to rebel and defy her father at every turn.
She has a genuine connection with new girlfriend, Rebeka, but the relationship stirs up even more problems for Mencia as Benjamin disapproves and thinks Rebe is a bad influence considering her mother’s reputation as a drug kingpin.
Little does he know, Mencia has gotten into a world of trouble all on her own.
While Rebe’s relationship with Mencia grows into one of the purest this season, following Samu’s betrayal last season, she’s understandably closed off and cautious with her heart.
Ander and Omar are still going strong but find their relationship is tested in unexpected ways when they invite Patrick, Benjamin’s son, into the fold.
Patrick knows the power he wields over them and intentionally meddles in their lives, but there’s also much more to him than meets the eye.
Ari is Benjamin’s star child who respects and listens to her father, but to her peers, she’s the resident mean girl who is oftentimes uptight and has a chip on her shoulder.
She catches the eye of both Samu and Guzman, which fractures their budding friendship. These two have always fought over women, but last time, Samu was being protective over his best friend, Nadia, who Guzman is still dating when the season commences.
Nadia appears only via video chat from her New York apartment, and their relationship allows the series to explore the trials and tribulations of a long-distance relationship that’s tested as temptation lurks right around the corner for Guzman.
While Guzman stands a chance with Ari based solely on social class and standing, Ari and Samu connect unexpectedly in an academic setting.
Who will the love triangle favor in the end?
Additionally, the school has attracted the youngest royal heir in Europe, Prince Philippe (Pol Granch). The series flips the classic “princess and the pauper” narrative to “prince and the pauper” as he connects with the school’s janitor Cayetana, making all of her fantasies come true.
But as the saying goes, “be careful what you wish for” as this fairytale quickly turns into a nightmare when it’s revealed the prince has a dark secret, and Cayetana’s past secrets with the late Polo and Valerio come back to haunt her.
Overall, you know exactly what you’re getting into when you press play on the fourth season. The writers have managed to deliver yet another incredibly intoxicating season about a group of lost souls looking for a purpose and tapping into the extreme lengths they’ll go to numb their pain.
Elite hits Netflix on Friday, June 18 with eight brand-new episodes.
*This review is based on the first four episodes of season 4 that were available to the press*
WATCH: Mel and Jack Talk Starting a Family in ‘Virgin River’ Season 3 Trailer
There’s plenty of baby talk going around in the Virgin River Season 3 trailer!
Netflix dropped the trailer for the upcoming drama on Friday, June 11 and it doesn’t waste any time answering the question on everyone’s mind: does Jack survive?
It’s quite an obvious answer considering there is no show without Jack, but if it’s been keeping you up at night, the good news is that he does.
Of course, that doesn’t put the question of who shot him to rest. (And we have some theories you can check out right here!)
As he recovers, he’s blessed to have Nurse Mel by his side.
With their romance finally heating up, the nosy locals in town begin asking questions about their future — is marriage in the cards? And what about babies?
Mel’s history will definitely come into play, especially as it was always her dream to have a child. But Jack is a new father to twins (at least we think they’re his) with his ex Charmaine.
Luckily, Charmaine is no longer hung up on him as she’s found a new man who is there for her and the kids!
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