The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is Netflix's foray into the world of the Archie Comics gang, and Sabrina, played by Kiernan Shipka, took our world by storm. The series is a loose adaptation of the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina comics, a tale of horror that follows the 16-year-old witch as she discovers the truth about her birth, her powers, and her family.
So how similar to the comics is Netflix's Chilling Adventures of Sabrina? At times the two versions of the story are essentially intertwined, but they often diverge in unique and fascinating ways. There are a few instances where characters suffer wildly different fates, and some of the storylines in the series are definitely inspired by the comics even if they don’t pan out the same way.
Spoilers abound for both the Archie Comics Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and it’s Netflix adaptation, so don’t cast a vengeance hex if you aren’t prepared to find out what happens to some of your favorite characters.
The crux of both Sabrina's Netflix series and comic book is she's half witch half mortal, and in each instance she's trying to figure out what it means to be both while coming of age as a teenager.
Both versions of Sabrina follow her as she undertakes the dark baptism and decides whether she should sign her name to Satan's book. The series and comic digress in a myriad of ways, but neither of them ever let the audience forget Sabrina is doing the best she can (which is very good!) as a 16-year-old stuck between two worlds.
An important plot point both the series and the comic hit is Sabrina's dad, Edward Spellman, wasn't a very good guy. Among other misdeeds, he offered Sabrina up to the dark lord a few days after she was born.
Specifically, he promised Satan baby Sabrina would be his bride. Not cool. In the series Edward mostly exists in dream sequences or flashbacks, but in the comic books his soul spends about 16 years stuck in a tree, and when he finally gets out he's got revenge on his mind.
As of November 2018 comic Edward has taken over Harvey Kinkle's body and he's using it to get close to Sabrina. So yeah, not a great guy no matter the format.
In each version of this story Sabrina's aunts, Hilda and Zelda, want Sabrina to experience everything her two world have to offer. In the series Zelda pushes Sabrina towards a life in the Coven of Night, and Hilda is more open to Sabrina's exploration of the mortal world, but in the comics it's much darker.
In that version of events Sabrina's aunts are so worried about what might happen to Sabrina if she grows up outside of their sphere of influence they drive her mother crazy and shove her in a mental institution before locking Edward Spellman's soul in a tree. It takes a village.
If you've only seen the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina series, then you might think there's a dense backstory to the Church of Night - the coven to which the Spellmans belong - but that's not actually the case.
While the Spellmans are members of the Church of Night, a coven run by Father Blackwood, Sabrina doesn't spend a lot of time with the group, although the bulk of the first few comics do deal with her dark baptism, a thing she's actually pumped for.
In the illustrated series she goes through the baptismal rites - even going so far as to slaughter a black goat - but before she can sign her name to the dark lord's book she's stopped by a meddling Harvey Kinkle.