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Recap / Sabrina The Teenage Witch S 1 E 1 Pilot

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Sabrina Spellman turns sixteen, and is told by her two aunts that she's actually a witch, with "real magical powers". As she's starting a new school, she has even more stress added, and accidentally turns the popular girl Libby into a pineapple!


  • All There in the Manual: The novelization adds in a couple of more details.
    • Sabrina worries about wearing sneakers or high heels, choosing the former, and getting embarrassed when every other girl appears to be wearing heels. This is why she mentions that she wore the wrong shoes later when talking to the council.
    • The episode just cuts to Jenny and Sabrina being lab partners, and the novelization states that Jenny herself walked across the room to offer.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Sabrina is warned to not stare at Drell's mole. It turns out he has a pet mole.
  • Bitch Alert: Libby gets two. She takes Harvey as her lab partner just as he's about to ask Sabrina, and later antagonises her in the bathroom.
  • Chekhov's Gag: Sabrina being unable to conjure anything but pineapples ends up coming into play when she accidentally turns Libby into one during their fight.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: When Hilda finds that Sabrina has accidentally turned a classmate into a pineapple, her reaction is to assume they want to slice her up!
  • Contrived Clumsiness: In the first timeline, Libby accidentally-on-purpose spills juice on Sabrina (leading to the latter's outburst). When the day is reset, Sabrina turns it back on her by using her magic to make the juice spray Libby in the face.
  • Cosmetic Catastrophe: Sabrina's powers accidentally make Libby unable to put lipstick on her lips, so she ends up drawing it all over her face.
  • Distant Reaction Shot: We stay in the upstairs landing as Hilda goes to the Other Realm, and just hear Drell screaming "get your hands off my mole!" as the room shakes.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • Sabrina somehow knows that Libby wears aftershave to remind her of an ex-boyfriend, suggesting her magic gives her telepathy or other psychic powers. This trait disappears in the series proper.
    • Sabrina eats pancakes for her birthday. Two seasons later, it's revealed that the Spellman witches can't eat pancakes or they'll become magically addicted.
    • The Witches' Council has a female member Cassandra, played by Debbie Harry, who does not appear past this episode.
  • Free the Frogs: Accidental example. Sabrina's class are dissecting frogs, and she accidentally brings hers back to life with her magic.
  • Ironic Echo: Hilda tells Sabrina to just "toughen up" when she worries about what the other kids at school will say. Zelda repeats that to her when she admits she can't face Drell.
  • Mundane Utility: Salem teaches Sabrina how to magic up more milk for herself, to save walking down to the kitchen and refilling her glass.
  • Punny Name: Jenny names her dead frog Tad, as in tadpole.
  • Reset Button: A plot point! Sabrina tries to appeal to the Witches' Council to have the day reset to avoid her run-in with Libby.
  • Sophisticated as Hell: After coming home, Sabrina Squees "I'm normal! Gotta go tell the cat."
  • Sweet and Sour Grapes: Sabrina resolves to face her fears when the council won't turn back time, and goes back to school knowing she'll be humiliated by Libby. Then Hilda decides she'll threaten Drell into doing it, meaning Sabrina does get to do the whole day over again.