This is what I love about this reboot - the Elders are just older or "elder" witches who have far too much responsibility heaped upon them who have had to fight back against puritanism and witch hunting that nearly wiped them out, as well as demon hoardes, etc.. and other evil magical creatures... it makes them human and ... gray. It gives them nuance.
Even though the Elders did some horrendous things, I thought it was BRILLIANT to connect that to the Salem Witch Trials and the abject fear witches were all living under and the way that drove them to create protectors (whitelighters) at any cost. That's such a superior origin story for Whitelighters vs the Original.
In the OG show, it felt like the Elders were like gods or something and they always seemed so disconnected... and their inhumanity or cruelty or arbitrary application of rules never really had a satisfactory explanation. On the reboot - they're just elder witches figuring it out as they go along. It's just better, imo.
I do hope we get more fun magical adventures like this with true stakes. I loved this episode the pieces.
Agree to disagree about Abigael. I worry about her being paired with Mel because I don't trust the writers not to decenter Mel and focus on Abigael too much. The show has 3 WoC leads and that's a huge reason why I watch. I'm not interested in seeing them marginalized for a white woman actress. Plenty of shows already do that - and I left them for that reason.
Thankfully according to Google Trends, Macy and Maggie still trend super high relative to Abigael, so I don't think she'll ever eclipse them, but I do worry she'll eclipse Mel, who is the weaker of the 3 leads.