This post contains spoilers for Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. The one thing that usually appears in every story about witches living in the mortal world is the fact that magical folk must hide their true identities from who J.K. Rowling lovingly refers to as Muggles. Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina doesn’t have a special name for its mortals, but it has introduced an exception to the witches hiding from regular humans. Who is Daniel Webster on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina? The non-magical lawyer stepped in to help Sabrina end her commitment to having a Dark Baptism.
Afraid to cut off her ties to the mortal world and become a full-time witch, Sabrina ran away from her midnight Dark Baptism despite having agreed to sign the Dark Lord’s book of loyalty. Visions of her parents telling her not to sign, as well as Father Blackwood lying about her still having free will, drove her to making the controversial decision. The Church of Night then charged her with a breach of promise, calling Sabrina and her aunts to a trial with the coven.
The trial definitely seemed like a hopeless situation before Ambrose told Sabrina about Webster (John Rubinstein), a mortal lawyer who specialized in witches and supposedly beat the Devil in a case. When Sabrina tracked down the elderly man, he was reluctant to help her, claiming to be retired and that a breach of promise case was too tricky. But after a reflective moment about the loss of his daughter, Webster surprisingly showed up at Sabrina’s trial to defend her.
Sabrina’s aunts and the coven weren’t thrilled about his appearance, as Webster had a reputation as Edward Spellman’s protege who he taught about witch law. According to Webster, Sabrina’s dad had helped him in a dire circumstance, and now was his turn to pay back the favor. Seeing as Sabrina faced the possible outcome of burning for 333 years upon death, Webster’s interference had perfect timing, and thanks to his defense, the first half of the case began to lean in Sabrina’s favor.
After the duo discovered that Sabrina’s father signed her own name in the Book of the Beast when she was a baby, Ms. Wardell laid out a scrapbook of unflattering articles about Webster’s past work for Sabrina to find. It turns out that Webster once had his own deal with the Devil, signing away his name for the sake of becoming the greatest lawyer. He realized a little too late that he only received cases asking him to defend monstrous criminals, and when one of his clients was set free, the man broke into Webster’s house and did "unspeakable things" to his daughter. After sharing his story, Webster pleaded Sabrina to keep working with him, because he felt he had a chance of saving her.
In the end, Aunt Hilda dropped the bombshell that she and her sister-in-law had an infant Sabrina baptized in the Catholic church before Sabrina’s father promised her to the Dark Lord. Although Webster’s reanalysis of the case had delayed the coven’s decision, Hilda’s secret was really what brought the Dark Lord to decree that Sabrina would retain her mortal life while studying at the Academy of Unseen Arts. As Webster called it, Sabrina was basically granted dual citizenship of both the mortal and magical worlds.
Before he left the victorious Spellmans behind, Webster advised Sabrina to learn as much as she could about the Devil, suggesting that she could be the one to beat him someday. Webster doesn’t appear in the rest of the season, but as Ms. Wardell haunted him in the form of his daughter, perhaps Season 2 will delve into an explanation of Webster’s inner demons.
Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is currently streaming on Netflix.
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