Sabrina's Secret Life

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Sabrina's Secret Life
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The massacre of DIC Entertainment's Sabrina The Teenage Witch cartoon franchise... brought to you by the same studio behind The Wacky World of Tex Avery who ruined two great franchises and the legacy of one famous cartoonist. What an accomplishment!
Genre: Action
Science fiction
Dramedy
Suspense
Running Time: 22 minutes
Country: United States
France
Canada
Release Date: November 10, 2003 – February 3, 2004
Network(s): Syndication
TF1
Distributed by: WildBrain
Starring: Britt McKillip
Maurice LaMarche
Bill Switzer
Jane Mortifee
Tifanie Christun
Moneca Stori
Shannon Chan-Kent
Seasons: 1
Episodes: 26


Sabrina's Secret Life is a 2003 French-American-Canadian animated television series produced by DIC Entertainment and their French subsidiary Les Studios Tex. It is a sequel series to Sabrina: The Animated Series and the TV movie Sabrina: Friends Forever!.

Plot

Sabrina Spellman has turned 14-years-old and is now in High School. However, being a half-witch, she now attends secret witch-training lessons with her rival - Cassandra, who wants to make Sabrina's life go wrong.

Bad Qualities

  1. Although Secret Life takes place after Sabrina: The Animated Series and the movie Sabrina: Friends Forever!, it almost has no connection to either, especially the former.
    • Nicole Candler, the secondary protagonist from Sabrina: Friends Forever! is retconned out of the series, and isn't seen or even mentioned at all whatsoever.
    • The production team is also different from STAS, as this series lacks the same kind of humor or creative storylines the former has.
  2. Bland voice acting, which doesn't help that none of the voice actors from the 1999 series or Friends Forever! reprise their roles. Britt McKillip does reprise her role as Sabrina from the movie Sabrina: Friends Forever!, however.
  3. The theme song, while catchy, mostly consists of "Who's Makin' Magic?" being said over and over again, making it repetitive.
  4. The animation has taken a complete nosedive, as it now looks quite rough and is very choppy, even for DIC standards. Not helping is that Les Studios Tex animated this show
  5. Many characters who appeared in STAS were removed in this series, with no explanation given on why they were removed.
    • Uncle Quigley (his voice-of-reason role was reassigned to Salem)
    • Chloe Flan (replaced with Maritza as Sabrina's best friend)
    • Gem Stone (replaced with Cassandra as the Queen Bee to Sabrina)
    • Other characters like the Spookie Jar, Pi, and Tim the Witch Smeller were also removed, without any reason.
  6. A majority of the characters have been Flanderized solely for the series to meet an FCC E/I criteria and to make the series more educational than the latter:
    • Sabrina, although older, suffers from the worse flanderization out of everyone. She is made more unpleasant, bratty, and stubborn, and is mostly the reason for a particular problem, to begin with. and she whines and/or cries whenever things don't go her way. Her love interest with Harvey goes way too over the bound (in STAS, she treated him more like a proper friend).
      • In the episode "At the Hop", she jumps to conclusions and thinks Maritza turned against her all because she accidentally said something to Harvey, which shows how bad of a friend Sabrina is in this series and how obsessed he is with Harvey.
    • Harvey's acute, ditsy and friendly personality was changed to make him more dare devilish, but at the same time making him more dumb and brain-dead. In some episodes, he is made more idiotic than usual.
    • Salem's sarcastic and jerky personality was almost completely ditched for the character to be more demanding to Sabrina and can be quite hypocritical at times.
    • Hilda and Zelda were turned into generic housewife-like characters.
  7. Even the new characters are bland and/or unlikeable as well.
    • Maritza has a severe lack of character other than being Sabrina's best friend. She acts almost identically to Chloe but without the charm, she had but doesn't know Sabrina is half-witch.
    • Cassandra barely shows any remorse for Sabrina whatsoever, although she sometimes regrets her actions.
  8. A majority of the character designs used in this series are recycled from the original series. Some instances include Maritza reusing Chloe Fran's model, Cassandra reusing Portia's model from Friends Forever! (itself reused from an unnamed background character in STAS), and Margaux and Tiffany (Cassandra's friends) also reusing character models from unvoiced background characters in STAS.
  9. The series is quite uninspired and feels like its sole purpose for existing was to cash in on the franchise's popularity, and also to cash in on other "Witchcraft" properties like Harry Potter.
    • An instance of this is that Sabrina attends a witch class (while in the original, she never did, and only used her magic when needed). Sabrina also uses a wand to cast spells (although she still occasionally uses her fingers, she uses the former more often) in this series, similar to how Harry Potter uses a wand. For some reason, her magic is far weaker than in STAS, and isn't explained why it's weaker, either.
  10. As with most shows that try to appeal to an E/I demographic, the morals are cliched and forced, and seen in almost every show that tries to appeal to this demographic. Even STAS, which also fulfilled E/I criteria, didn't force its morals.
    • There are also quite bad morals in the episodes themselves, such as in the episode "School Spirit" where near the middle of the episode Sabrina cries when she thinks Cassandra beat her at making cookies, and Salem admits that her crying always works. Crying never solves any problems.

Good Qualities

  1. The series still has the Sabrina feel that STAS and Friends Forever! have.
    • On the side of that, fans of both may enjoy this series.
  2. Cassandra can be nice at times, and even fully reforms by the final episode "Midsummer's Nightmare."
  3. The villains this show has aren't too bad and are based on problems Sabrina has.
  4. Despite the recycling and choppy styling, some of the character designs are decent, like Sabrina's.
    • On that topic, some of the actors did reasonably well, such as Maurice LaMarche for Salem and Tifanie Cristun as Cassandra.
  5. The show is at least faithful to its predecessor and the comics, unlike the 2013 reboot.

Trivia

  • This was the final series to be produced by Les Studios Tex, as they ceased operations around the time the show ended.

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