The fourth and final season of Netflix’s teen drama/horror series, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, contains an episode with a metal plot line that is not just bad — it’s hilariously bad.
It includes a life-or-death battle of the bands involving a resurrected metal band that made a deal with Satan, a not so great cover of Guns N’ Roses and so much more.
Where do I even begin? First, I will give the show’s creators the benefit of the doubt. The series is a much darker adaptation of the ’90s hit comedy Sabrina The Teenage Witch. It’s also a spinoff of the incredibly over-the-top dramatic series Riverdale.
In other words, it’s basically a soap opera for teenagers and is not something to be taken too seriously.
As someone who was absolutely obsessed with the ’90s series as a kid and also has an affinity for the occult, I was obviously going to watch this series. Despite it’s often cheesy and Satanic-lite nature, I have found it to be an amusing escape from reality with plenty of nods to the original and some clever jokes mixed in. It also makes a valiant effort at inclusivity, which I appreciate.
However, it can go overboard. At times with hilariously disastrous results as in Part 4, Episode 6 — Chapter Thirty-Four: The Endless. I will now try to briefly and without too many spoilers explain the utterly campy depiction of metal in this episode of Sabrina.
The Story Line
Editor’s Note: If you don’t care about the plot or want to avoid spoilers and just want to see the battle of the bands, keep scrolling until you see videos.
Sabrina’s friends have a band called The Fright Club and after getting into an argument with a rival band over practice space, they decide they want to settle it the way any high schoolers would: with a battle of the bands.
The school librarian then shows them an old poster she just happened to find in the archives for a cancelled battle of the bands way back in the day, featuring a metal band called Satanic Panic.
I’ll skip ahead to the part where we find out the battle was canceled because Satanic Panic met Lucifer Morningstar who said he’d manage them, but they obviously had to kill a virgin in exchange for stardom. Standard deal with the Devil, ya know.
So they kill the homecoming queen by stabbing her to death or something. Typical metal band devil shit.
We’ll also try to ignore the fact that Satanic Panic more resemble a punk band than an ’80s metal band because it doesn’t seem that important. The costume department said let them be goth-y punks. Good enough. Plus, they cover a horror punk band later, so not exactly sure why they kept calling them a metal band. I guess it fit more with the devil stuff.
Anyway, Harvey Kinkle (member of Fright Club and friend and ex boyfriend of Sabrina) finds his dad’s old guitar and shreds magically. His dad finds him with the guitar, says he thinks his musical aspirations are a waste of time and implores him to get a real job or focus on something worthwhile. Tale as old as time, eh?
Harvey asks him about the guitar and it turns out Dad Kinkle was actually IN Satantic Panic, but he didn’t take part in killing the homecoming queen. Instead, he told the homecoming queen’s dad what the band did. The queen’s dad then burns Satanic Panic to death in the woods. They are subsequently dragged to Hell.
Now, for reasons it would take far too long to explain, Satanic Panic return from the dead/Hell and slaughter The Fright Club’s rival band. They also kidnap Harvey’s dad for being a snitch, lock him in a cage and tell Harvey if he ever wants to see his precious pops again The Fright Club will have to beat them in the battle of the bands.
Ok, whew, we finally made it to the good part: The battle of the bands.
The Battle of the Bands
The Fright Club know they are not metal and cannot beat Satanic Panic at metal, so they decide to do a cover of “Time Warp” from The Rocky Horror Picture Show. It’s probably the least offensive part of the battle of the bands.
The Fright Club, “Time Warp”
Satanic Panic perform a song called “Party Time,” which is by an OG horror punk/deathrock band called Grave 45.
Satanic Panic, “Party Time”
Original: Grave 45, “Party Time”
Then comes the worst part. Sabrina and some of the other witches form a backup plan in case The Fright Club fall short in their performance that involves resurrecting the homecoming queen and butchering Guns N’ Roses “Sweet Child O Mine” for some reason.
The Dark Mothers, “Sweet Child O’ Mine”
Original: Guns N’ Roses, “Sweet Child O’ Mine”
GN’R gives the murdered queen the power to burn/defeat Satanic Panic once and for all, Harvey’s dad is free and the Dark Mothers win the battle of the bands, I think.
In other metal Sabrina connections, this season also features Disturbed’s “Down with the Sickness” in Episode 3, and you might also recall when the Temple of Satan sued Netflix over a copy of their Baphomet statue in the show.