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Kiernan Shipka, the New Sabrina, Is a Half-Witch Offscreen Too

“Anne Boleyn,” Kiernan Shipka announces. “Tituba, Mary Bradbury, Baab spelled with two As.”

Shipka is sitting in front of two bright lights and a camera, listing famous historical witches. The 5’2” actress is wearing a shimmery silver turtleneck, a shoulder-grazing blonde bob, and so many coats of mascara that from behind the camera, her eyelashes look like twin black widows. We’re here talking metaphysical women because Shipka is the star of Netflix’s newest cult teen series, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, which premieres apropos of the spooky season on October 26. The supernatural drama charts the story of spunky 15-year-old Sabrina Spellman, who was born half-witch, half-mortal. On the eve of her 16th birthday, Sabrina is forced to make a high-stakes decision whether to stay with her fleshly friends or transfer to a school for the dark arts, giving herself over to the twisted mystical world forever.

Chilling Adventures is a macabre take on Sabrina the Teenage Witch, the sitcom some of its audience will remember from 20 years ago. One person who does not remember, however, is Shipka—you have to remind yourself as you sit across from her that she is only 18 years old. In between looks at today’s photo shoot, we film a video in which Shipka has to guess fictional witches from modern history with the help of a few simple clues. Everyone backstage squirms as she struggles to recognize Teen Witch, Halloweentown, or Practical Magic, somehow failing to remember, though we’re all fully familiar with her bio and wrinkle-free complexion, that these movies came out 10 years before Shipka was even alive. (To end the challenge, the Chilling Adventures actress flexes her objectively more impressive knowledge of real-life witches—Anne Boleyn, etc.—redeeming her lack of ’90s pop culture.)