Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
Chapter Seventeen: “The Missionaries”
Directed by Rob Seidenglanz
Written by Donna Thorland
* For a recap & review of Chapter Sixteen, “Blackwood” – click here
* For a recap & review of Chapter Eighteen, “The Miracles of Sabrina Spellman” – click here
Skip back two weeks.
Poor Luke (Darren Mann) is bloody, hanging upside down from a tree. Jerathmiel (Spencer Treat Clark) is looking for info on the “witches of Greendale.” He’s part of the Order of the Innocent. He offers to save Luke’s soul if he’s told about the witches and warlocks. And he’s going to use Luke’s hands to get inside the Church of Night.
Back to the present moment in time.
Sabrina (Kiernan Shipka) is at Gehenna Station banging on the doors. She gets an answer from Prudence (Tati Gabrielle), but won’t be let in. She’s expelled while Ambrose (Chance Perdomo) continues to be locked up. Aunt Hilda (Lucy Davis) suggests they’ll have to summon the Trivium Council and break “witch protocol.” When the council are summoned, they say there’ll be no trial, only execution.
In a cell, Ambrose is using the time to work on his body: “I might as well leave a good looking corpse.” He’s brought gruel for dinner by Dorcas (Abigail F. Cowen). He tries seducing her, before Prudence turns up to scold them both. Seems that becoming a Blackwood has changed Prudence quite a bit. Awful hypocritical, no? She was about to kill her father before he handed over the family name.
In lieu of going to the Academy, Sabrina heads back to Baxter High.
She sees Harvey (Ross Lynch) and Theo (Lachlan Watson) for the first time in a while. She’s also told about how Roz (Jaz Sinclair) is going through a horrible time due to the loss of her sight. Her friends aren’t feeling so hot about the way she spends time waffling between two worlds. The young witch offers a spell to help fix Roz’s eyesight. Harvey hates the idea, and so does Roz, blaming it on a witch’s curse. The pair wonder if Sabrina cursed Roz because of them being together. Horrible idea for her friends to entertain, though Theo won’t have any of that shit.
Note: Roz is listening to a cassette tape about the Children’s Crusade, an event that supposedly occurred in 1212. Any significance? Perhaps the duelling religions angle that’s come up with the Order of the Innocent.
Witches don’t cure people—
they curse people.
Hilda gets in to see Ambrose, and he isn’t doing well at all. He’s ready to die after experiencing “living hell.” Both Hilda and Ambrose are actually being played against one other. They’re being tricked by Prudence and the Weird Sisters. They both try resisting the visions. A fake vision of Hilda tries convincing Ambrose to admit false guilt, and the fake vision of Ambrose tries to convince Hilda he actually murdered the Anti-Pope. They’re both smarter than to fall for that. (Father Gore loves that Hilda can’t stand Fawlty Towers, even if it’s a great show.)
No matter what, auntie gets a message to her nephew.
Back at home, Sabrina gets a knock on the door from Jerathmiel. He’s let inside for a glass of water, though she lets him know they have their own faith. While listening to more of the Children’s Crusade tape, Roz has a vision of a dead Sabrina. She panics and calls her witchy friend. Sabrina notices Jerathmiel’s knife and immediately rushes for the door, locking him inside with a spell long enough to get away. At the same moment in the bookstore, Hilda also gets a visit from a missionary seeking to make her repent. So, she sets the incubus within Dr. Cee free to fight for her.
“It’s a thirsty business
doing the Lord’s work.”
Dorian Gray is killed by one of the Order of the Innocent. Another of them seeks Nick (Gavin Leatherwood). He’s drunk and it makes things difficult. Gideon the missionary tries to kill him. But Mr. Gray isn’t actually dead, and he stabs the missionary. Luckily, all the witches and warlocks have survived their attacks. Now they’ve got to warn the Academy what’s coming.
Lilith realises the Dark Lord has a terrifying grip on her entire existence. She tries to get away with Adam for a bit, which proves only to be a message from her Master: there is no escape. She’ll never be free of Satan, no matter if she goes to the cottage, or if she travels to Tibet. He then forces her to eat dead Adam for supper.
What will this ultimately push Lilith to do?
The Weird Sisters, along wit other witches, try to make Ambrose confess. He’s able to make a skeleton key from chicken bones, escaping his cell. He runs right into the Innocents who’ve come to hunt as many witches as they can find. Jerathmiel and another of the missionaries are soon at the mercy of the Weird Sisters. Their hearts begin “turning to stone.” The Innocents battle back with their own divine powers, making the sisters bleed from their eyes and ears— these missionaries are literal angels.
Harvey apologises to Sabrina for how he acted, offering to help her, Hilda, and Nick fend off the witch hunters at the Academy. They get to the school, where the Baphomet statue is destroyed, and they find Ambrose with a knife in his chest, though alive. The other witches have been taken to the desecrated church to be converted and killed.
Sabrina arrives to interrupt, getting an arrow in the side for her troubles. One of the missionaries places a Crown of Thorns on her head. Again, the Sabrina-Christ imagery. She tries to free her fellow witches, being shot over and over with more arrows.
The witch falls to the floor, bleeding from her wounds.
Jerathmiel is ready to burn the Weird Sisters. He’s stopped in his tracks by a resurrected Sabrina. She rises from the ground, pushing them to their knees. “Take Lucifer Morningstar into your hearts,” she commands. They’re the ones who have to repent their God. After that, they’re burned to a crisp. These new, awesome powers Sabrina wields are at once amazing and horrific. She can bring people back to life as quickly as she can dispatch them to death.
A perfectly blasphemous episode! Wonderfully dark. Sabrina becoming a subverted version of Christ has been a theme already, and to see it come to fruition here is great. So much wild, dark stuff happening this time around, making the series even better.
“The Miracles of Sabrina Spellman” is next, continuing the Christ-like ascension.