Christine O’Donnell’s recent admission that she “dabbled in witchcraft” has been terribly overblown. To me, it’s a non-issue (don’t all teenagers do weird stuff?); her anti-masturbation stance is far more frightening. But this certainly isn’t a political blog, and the only reason I bring this up is because it’s what gave me the idea to compile this list. As popular as witches are, and as much as they have permeated popular culture, there are various ways in which they’re portrayed. Some are pure evil, some are Satanic, and some are good-hearted souls who happen to practice witchcraft.
Below, check out notable witches as seen in movies, television, and video games. If you know of any I’ve left out – and I’m sure there are at least a few – let me know in the comments section.
Alexandra, Jane, and Sukie – The Witches of Eastwick
Themes of feminism and links to Satan are prevalent throughout The Witches of Eastwick, and while the “witches” are never actually named as such, it’s quite clear what they are.
Bayonetta – Bayonetta
My favorite female video game protagonist not named Samus Aran, Bayonetta is a witch who has no problem using guns, a katana, rocket launchers, and even alien technology. She still keeps it real by being skilled in the art of concoctions.
Willow and Tara – Buffy the Vampire Slayer
It’s impossible not to like these two together, who have helped Buffy out with their spell-casting on more than one occasion. A great example of “good” witches.
Hermione Granger – Harry Potter series
The adorable (soon to be very sexy) Hermione has a natural knack for the use of magic. Harry would have been killed many times were it not for her assistance and intelligence.
Samantha Stephens – Bewitched
A witch for a wife that can do pretty much anything just by snapping her fingers? Yes, please. Although the mother-in-law may have been a deal-breaker.
Miss Eva Ernst – The Witches
I always thought this movie was a little bit too intense for kids. Just take a look at Miss Ernst – terrifying.
Jesus – True Blood
Not all witches are male, as evidenced by True Blood’s most recent supernatural, Jesus. It remains to be seen whether or not his intentions with Lafayette are good.
Sarah, Nancy, Bonnie, and Rochelle – The Craft
This is pretty much the ultimate girls-in-middle-school-slumber-party movie. It’s actually not bad; I especially like Fairuza Balk as a witch. She’s always seemed a little nutty.
The Wicked Witch of the West – The Wizard of Oz
Elphalba (her given name in Wicked) is probably the most popular witch in history, right? The green skin, the pointy hat, and the broomstick are usually the first things we associate with witches. As an aside, I read constantly, and I always finish what I start…except for Wicked. It’s the only book I just couldn’t get through.
The Blair Witch – The Blair Witch Project
You never actually see the Blair Witch, which is either incredibly horrifying thanks to your vivid imagination, or a lame cop-out in a gimmicky movie. I think it’s the former, but I know that many disagree.
Sabrina – Sabrina, The Teenage Witch
Sabrina didn’t have green skin, but she did have a black cat familiar, another concept highly associated with witches.
Witchiepoo – H.R. Pufnstuf
Terrifying. I am convinced very single character, theme, and line of dialogue on this show was created under the influence of hard, psychoactive drugs.
Prudence, Piper, Paige, and Phoebe – Charmed
The best-looking female cast in television history? I think these girls are certainly in the conversation.
Miss Eglantine Price – Bedknobs and Broomsticks
Angela Lansbury plays a witch in training in this very underrated movie that combines live action with great animation. The animal soccer game remains one of my favorite scenes.
Winnie, Mary, and Sarah in Hocus Pocus
It’s a sad state of affairs when Sarah Jessica Parker is the best-looking woman in this picture. I feel bad saying that considering how much my mother (and Jewish mothers everyone) adore Bette Midler.
Who’d I leave off? Let me know!