• Sat, Jan 19 2013

Questions That Arise After Watching All Seven Seasons Of ‘Sabrina The Teenage Witch’ Now On Hulu

Sabrina

You feel drunk, and yet you aren’t. It is as if the universe has gently extended itself to you and then passionately kissed you on the lips. How long has the series been available? Not long. You’d have known. Has it been days? A week?

We won’t speak of the movie, of course. Ryan Reynolds was in it. That’s about it.

You become temporarily re-obsessed with Paul Feig, who played the genial science teacher Mr. Pool (“Mitosis is…”) in Season One before decamping from the series to create Freaks and Geeks and direct Bridesmaids. Though his character arc lasted a single season, he managed to pack a great deal of living into 22 episodes. From Wikipedia:

Mr. Pool is mortal. He is Sabrina’s favorite teacher who teaches Biology until Paul Feig left the show after season 1. He was sometimes bitter and sarcastic, but always interesting and usually lively. In one episode, Sabrina casts a spell that endows him with the knowledge of changing lead to gold, but is later forced to retract the knowledge due to the potential economic difficulties it would have caused. Mr. Pool, who had benefited greatly from the knowledge, was very unhappy when he lost it. In the episode “As Westbridge Turns”, he reveals that Sabrina is one of his best students. In that same episode, he also plans to marry the school nurse, who ends up running away with the new janitor. Mr. Pool’s response to that situation was a calm, “Meh. I got farther than I thought I would.”

Have you always known that Mr. Pool from Sabrina The Teenage Witch was also the guy from Heavyweights and the guy from That Thing You Do and the director of Arrested Development? Did you know it once and then forget? Did you think that Hollywood was simply flush with talented men named Paul in the 90s and 00s? Is it better to know that it was all one man, or are you slightly disappointed? After you read his NYT Magazine profile, would you say you felt more comforted that someone so wildly successful and creative also appears to be (insofar as you can tell what anyone appears to be through a magazine profile) delightful, sensitive and compassionate, or more distraught at how comparatively little you’ve managed to achieve in your own life?

You become temporarily re-obsessed with Nate Richert‘s jawline, particularly in profile. Much like Dan Stevens or Chris Pratt, your interest in his personhood waxes and wanes with the relative firmness of the outline of his chin and throat from season to season.

You wonder: Had the show come along a year or two later, would the creators have been bold enough to make Zelda and Hilda lovers instead of oddly close sisters? Probably not, of course. But might they have?

What exactly was the nature of the relationship between Principal Kraft and Libby? Were we meant to believe that this school official was just her best friend with no ulterior motives? Their relationship is disturbingly intimate and yet strangely sexless. Was he her uncle or something? Why was he so invested in her social standing?

If Jerry Springer hosts a talk show in the Other Realm, is he a witch? A mortal exception? A minor god?

In the pilot episode, why are we expected to believe that Sabrina is capable of reviving a frog from the dead but somehow unable to complete a relatively simple task like transforming an orange into an apple after 23 tries?

How disappointing was it when the lovely and odd Jenny was summarily replaced at the end of the first season with nail-biting, smooth-haired, self-hating Valerie? Not that Valerie wasn’t great. She was fine. But she wasn’t Jenny.

What did you do before you started watching all seven seasons in a row? Did you have a job? Friends? A career, or other interests? Can you remember? I can’t remember. All I know is that hearing the opening guitar riffs of the theme song makes me happy in a way I cannot possibly explain.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/ginnylisemonaco Ginny Monaco

    I did the same thing a few months ago. I was watching Sabrina while getting ready in the morning, while riding the bus, wandering around Sephora, ect. There was absolutely no reason for it.

  • MoxyCrimeFighter

    Not only do I still say “Mitosis is…” as a prelude to anything I’m trying to remember, regardless of topic, but I just chopped off about 65% of my hair yesterday and found myself murmuring (as I often do in the stylist’s chair), “Hair grows. Hair grows!”

  • sherry_b

    this has just made my life, both for the knowledge that I CAN FIND THIS and because it’s like you’re in my head