Written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Art by Robert Hack
Lettered by Jack Morelli
Published by Archie Comics
Release Date: 10/08/2014
This is not your grandmothers Sabrina. This is not your parents Riverdale. This is unquestionably not the Archie Comics that even you may be accustom with, as writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (Afterlife with Archie) continues to spin his inventive and dark interpretation of the Archie universe with the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina #1.
Our story starts off one year after the birth of Sabrina Spellman on October 31, 1951, as we witness a frightening reimagination of the popular teenage witch’s origin. Disclosed at the beginning of this particular tale is the fate of Sabrina’s parents (Edward and Diana), as we discover exactly how and why she was raised by Hilda and Zelda. The child is forced in the direction of her aunt’s care due to her father’s marriage to a mortal woman, a violation of a sacred witch-law, a law that Sabrina is later reminded of as she matures.
The first issue proceeds to jump ahead to Sabrina’s birthday in 1957, 1962, and later to 1964 as we witness the progress of Sabrina’s powers as well as the influence and role her aunts play in shaping out the witch she will become. What they can’t control however is her growing capacity in spells and magic as well as the usual tribulations of adolescence. Reintroduced in this first issue are the family cat Salem Saberhagen, Sabrina’s warlock cousin Ambrose, Sabrina’s rival Rosalind, and even Harvey Kinkle, her long-time love interest. We even get a look at Riverdale’s most popular blonde and brunette, as they dabble in black magic and inadvertently awaken a succubus seeking atonement for a past betrayal which leads to a chilling conclusion.
Aguirre-Sacasa delivers another unconventional, nightmarish, and exceptional take on the Archie universe with this first issue. It appears as if this series will primarily take place fifty years in the past in 1964, and it just feels like the creators can take this in so many different directions. Robert Hack just nails it with the illustrations, as he vividly captures the wickedness of this story, particularly with a young Sabrina celebrating her sixth birthday, the tree, and the female demon at the end. His choice of colors works well and his work just brings an overall high quality artistic element to this collaboration. This issue works so well that if you throw it in water, it most certainly would float. A can’t miss, must pull for horror fans, you don’t want to miss this issue. You’ve been warned.
REVIEW: CHILLING ADVENTURES OF SABRINA #1
Peter Rodriguez (Geek Sushi)