The CW Network has a hit on their hands with Archie comics-inspired Riverdale, but Netflix is going to take it one step further. Based on the popular graphic novels, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, the streaming service will be giving us a more horrific tale of the American teen.
You’re probably familiar with teen witch Sabrina Spellman from Melissa Joan Hart’s cheerful 90s-era portrayal in Sabrina the Teenage Witch, but Archie Horror’s version gives you more to be afraid of than that unsettling black cat puppet.
According to Vanity Fair, the currently unnamed Chilling Adventures of Sabrina project will be “a dark coming-of-age story that traffics in horror, the occult and, of course, witchcraft” in the vein of Rosemary’s Baby and The Exorcist.
They have also hinted that, unlike the CW’s lighthearted-comic-turned-teen-murder-myserty series Riverdale, Netflix’s new show will be a more focused adaptation of the Archie Horror graphic novels.
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina graphic novels were released in October 2014, acting as a companion piece to 2013’s Afterlife with Archie. Though they share several characters, the comics are not directly related and are instead set in their own reality (most notably, Sabrina isn’t overrun by the walking dead like her poor pals in Riverdale).
Executive Producer and Archie Comics Chief Creative Officer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa wrote and created the Afterlife with Archie and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina comic series, so it’s safe to say he’s dedicated to the story and tone.
Kiernan Shipka has been cast as the young lead witch, Sabrina Spellman. Shipka is best known for her role as Sally Draper on Mad Men, but horror fans may also be familiar with her work in the atmospheric and haunting The Blackcoat’s Daughter.
“We’re all such huge fans of Kiernan’s work that when we started talking about who this new incarnation of Sabrina could be, her name was on everyone’s wish list.” said executive producer and Archie Comics Chief Creative Officer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. “This is a darker, more macabre version of Sabrina, and we’re incredibly excited for people to see Kiernan make this iconic character her own.”
The currently unnamed one-hour drama series will be coming to Netflix in 2018 and has already been approved for a two-season, 20-episode run.
I, for one, can’t wait. Kiernan Shipka is incredibly talented and the Archie Horror comics are fantastic, so I love the idea to take this to the small screen.
I should also note that it feels appropriate for Netflix to host this darker tale. With the wild popularity of Stranger Things, the streaming giant has shown that they are comfortable with ambitious genre shows. Netflix offers a lot of flexibility for creators to do what they want with their stories, which more structured networks aren’t always willing to lend.
The series will be written by Archie Comics CCO and Riverdale showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, directed by Lee Toland Krieger, and produced by Berlanti Productions in association with Warner Brothers Studios.
What do you think, is your interest piqued? Have you read the graphic novels? Tell us in the comments!
Featured image via The Hollywood Reporter