Kiernan Shipka has some big shoes to fill when The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina premieres on Netflix. Based on the same comic book that inspired the Melissa Joan Hart-led Sabrina the Teenage Witch in 1996, this update offers a much darker aesthetic. But the basis of the show still remains, that of a young woman navigating high school and her life as half mortal/half witch.
But Shipka promises this new version provides a much more feminist protagonist.
"This is totally the Sabrina for 2018, in so many ways. She's a woke witch," she told Variety. "Her entire grappling with signing her name away in the Book of the Beast and questioning a lot of the more patriarchal elements of what she was raised to believe and to go into. I think that, in and of itself, is very feminist, and she's a strong independent woman, and she stands up for herself, and she does what she thinks is right."
In addition to Sabrina's general wokeness, the show also features at least two queer characters. Chance Perdomo stars as Sabrina's cousin, Ambrose Spellman, who was described as pansexual during casting. And non-binary actor Lachlan Watson plays Sabrina's friend, Susie, who is also non-binary.
"Susie provides a side of feminism that really represents that you really don't have to be female to be a feminist," Watson said. "It really encompasses all minorities and all misunderstood people, or gender inequality as a whole, I think. Throughout Susie's sort of queer journey -- specifically a bit of a genderqueer journey -- which really speaks to me, it's having that group of incredible feminists behind their back."
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina premieres Friday, October 26 on Netflix. Watch the trailer below: