The Truth About Mrs. Wardell On 'Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina' Will Leave You Shook
Just one town over from Riverdale, on the far side of the Sweetwater River, lies Greendale. The CW show has crossed the river a few times in the course of its two seasons, but now Netflix is setting up camp there permanently with its brand new series, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Focusing on the adventures of Sabrina Spellman and her friends, the show introduces Baxter High, a new student body, a principal, and teachers like Ms. Wardwell (Michelle Gomez of Doctor Who fame). But, who is Ms. Wardwell on Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina? Warning: Spoilers for Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Season 1 follow.
When viewers first meet Ms. Wardwell at the very beginning of the season, she's a mousey teacher with a fondness for horror and the occult. Sabrina and her friends run into her at the midnight showing of a local horror film. Later on, Harvey mentions she taught the history of witches in Greendale and their own mini-Salem Witch trial.
But on the way home from the movies Mary Wardwell runs into a woman who doesn't quite look human. Upon getting home, she learns the girl is not. But before Ms. Wardwell can do anything about it, or about the information the ghost shares regarding Sabrina's family being witches, the ghost murders the Greendale teacher and takes over her body for the rest of the series.
From then on, Wardwell ditches the mousy look for a whole new sultry attitude and an extreme interest in this "posh boarding school" Sabrina has been considering attending. Outwardly she seems to want to befriend and mentor to Sabrina. But inwardly, her intentions seem less than honorable. When you strip away all the lies she tells, her real identity is Satan's best girl, Lilith, sent here to prove herself worthy of ruling by her side.
Once Sabrina refuses to sign the Book of the Beast on her 16th birthday, it becomes Wardwell's personal mission to get Sabrina to change her mind. She works hard to separate the child from her friends so she'll willingly leave the mortal coil. Wardwell also visits with Faustus Blackwood, the headmaster at the Academy of Unseen Arts, taunting she will succeed where he failed.
But when Ms. Wardwell reveals she's been spying on Sabrina to rescue her after a sleep-demon traps the whole Spellman household, instead of being a manipulating foe, Wardwell becomes something of a mentor. It's a confusing about-face, showing the depths of Wardwell's character. She can train and raise up a powerful witch, while also plotting to tear her down for the Dark Lord.
In the end, Wardwell discovers the key to getting Sabrina to submit is by making it about those she loves. By engineering a crisis in the town where the 13 original witches who were killed in the Greendale Witch Trials attack, Sabrina finally agrees to sign her name in the Book of the Beast, thereby gaining the power she needs to save the life of her friends.
Wardwell has won, but for how long? She may be Madame Satan now, but how long until Sabrina's power surpasses hers, and mentor becomes competitor, and then enemy? Fans will have to wait for Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Season 2 to find out.