Happy Halloween to one and all!
And for the day that’s in it, we’ve decided to publish our favourite witches article from volume one issue six!
Halloween is our absolute favourite time of year in Cinders. We love the masks, the dressing up and the very scary stories. But the best thing might just be, the chance to head out with all of our favourite witchy ladies. Grainne Coyne and Méabh McDonnell put together a list of their all time favourite fictional witches.
Nico Minoru – Runaways
Nico Minoru is one of our new favourite magical ladies – despite the fact that she’s not all that new. Nico is the de-facto leader of the Runaways – a 2003 comic book series created by Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona – who just happens to be making a return in Rainbow Rowell and Kris Anka’s new six issue run of the series. We’re not obsessed – you’re obsessed! Nico is a girl who was a normal teenager, leading a normal goth teenage life – that was until she found out that her parents were super villains intent on ending the world. Following this life altering revelation, Nico finds a power within herself and an ability to cast spells, but never the same one twice. Catch up on Nico’s adventures in the original run and then dive into her incredible dramatic comeback in the new series!
Sarah Bailey – The Craft
Now for something completely different, The Craft doesn’t exactly reflect witches in the best light. Instead, it shows us what can happen if you let darkness and power overcome you. Sarah is the main protagonist throughout and while the other young witches within the coven are just as intriguing and have issues of their own, it is Sarah who perseveres and doesn’t let the darkness overcome her. She becomes a better and a stronger witch for it. The antagonist Nancy reflects what can happen as a result of giving into your darker impulses. Sarah is our girl – and a favourite Halloween costume!
Bonnie Bennett – The Vampire Diaries
Even though Grainne gave up on TVD after season three, (Méabh kept going to the end) there was one character that she liked throughout and that was Bonnie Bennett. Bonnie is the voice of reason and is usually who you can count on to save the day, even if it costs her life in the process. Despite being frequently unlucky in love and often unlucky in life, Bonnie remained steadfast and brave throughout the series. Bonnie was the ultimate fix when everything was going wrong and often despite the vampire’s superior strength and power – it was usually up to Bonnie to save the day. Even whenever she was dead.
Glinda Upland – Wicked
A controversial choice maybe, but we love Glinda. Most people probably relate to Elphaba more, however it is Glinda holds a special place in our hearts. She may be the “good witch”, but we know that nothing is what it seems when it comes to ‘Wicked’. From the beginning we think Glinda is the atypical mean, snobby girl, but then we see at her core she is a good person who is willing to do what is right for her friend. For the good of all and the good of Oz, and with Elphaba’s permission – she lies about Elphaba’s role, making her out to be the villain she is not. We can tell though this breaks her heart and hurts even more to say goodbye to her friend and the one person who has changed her for the better and “for good.” Wicked is one of our favourite musicals with its strong messages of female friendship and that you can’t judge a book by its cover. But the most important lesson is that there is no such thing as good and bad witches, there are only people with may be magical abilities, but most importantly, good friends.
Gillian and Sally Owens – Practical Magic
Practical Magic has always been close to Grainne’s heart. After watching it for the first time when she was ten, she just loved everything about it. It was a story that featured curses about true love, life as single mother, escaping toxic relationships, situations and realising you’re better for it. It also reflects the bullying and isolation that adults can experience within a community by being different, or in this case for being a “witch”. But the true highlight of Practical Magic is the relationship between sister witches Sally and Gillian. Completely opposite to one another, Sally and Gillian’s love for each other as sisters is what bonds them and ultimately, saves them both. We love stories about female relationships, and this film adaptation has it at its core, not just with Sally and Gillian but with amazing aunts Bridget and Frances. The ending is pure uplifting delight, and shows that there just maybe “a little witch in all of us” after all.
Prue, Piper, Phoebe & Paige Halliwell – Charmed
Oh the power of three, or rather four! Look we can’t pick one, we loved them all! These witches and sisters were normal gals, except for well, being witches. In fact the Halliwells are the most powerful witches on earth with their main job being to protect the innocent. Of course this doesn’t mean that Prue, Paige, Piper and Piper didn’t have lots of relationship dramas – but it was what made their stories compelling. Not to mention that Charmed had one of the most epic TV theme songs of the 90’s, and even hearing it now has us totally pumped for another episode of the Halliwell’s adventures!
Penelope Bunce – Carry On
Think of a Hermione Granger with far more opinions and bottle red hair and you might be thinking of Penelope Bunce. The loyal best friend of Chosen One / Saviour of the World, Simon Snow, Penny is a powerful witch, and what’s more, she knows it. A character that is more of an homage to JK’s Hermione than a copy, Penelope Bunce is a creation of our perennial favourite – Rainbow Rowell. First showing up in Fangirl as a fictional character and again in Carry On as herself, Penny is loyal, steadfast and talented. She also has a wicked sense of humour – which is important when your best friend could destroy your home while trying to save the planet. Penny always feels like the closest to what it might be like if witches were real, how they would really react to both the magical world around them and the real world.
Willow Rosenberg – Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Who can make a list of incredible pop culture witches without listing Willow! Willow is strong, loyal, and an absolute genius to boot! Her charming blend of adorkable humour endeared her to many’s an awkward girl. We loved watching her balance learning witchcraft, being the slayer’s best friend to even heading up the Scoobie gang when Buffy went AWOL. And of course her beautiful romance with fellow witch Tara if possible made the adorable witch even more loveable. We see her dabble with powers beyond her control and test the temptations of power. Willow was the Q division of the Scoobies but she was also the character others ran to when they needed help. She’s the best friend that we all deserve.