Note: This article contains massive spoilers for “Hocus Pocus 2” on Disney+. Read on at your own risk
Lock up your children Salem, the Sanderson Sisters are back, again! But once more, the witchy trio only returns for one night in “Hocus Pocus 2” — or so it seems. But could a threequel be possible now? Let’s break down this ending.
First, we need to take it back a touch. Much like the original film, the Sanderson Sisters were only able to return to Salem this year thanks to a Black Flame candle. It’s not the Black Flame candle — the one that Max (Omri Katz), Alison (Vinessa Shaw) and Dani (Thora Birch) used to resurrect the witches the first time — but it works the same way. A virgin lights it on Halloween, during a full moon, and ichita copita melaka mystica, Winifred (Bette Midler), Mary (Kathy Najimy) and Sarah Sanderson (Sarah Jessica Parker) return, striving to suck the lives out of children to remain young … and well, alive.
But this time, the Sanderson sisters were brought back deliberately — just not by the person who lights the candle. Gilbert (Sam Richardson) tricks Becca (Whitney Peak) and Izzie (Belissa Escobedo) into lighting it intentionally, because as it turns out, he saw the witches when they returned, and eventually when they died, in “Hocus Pocus.” He was a huge fan, but couldn’t bring them back himself because, uh, the candle wouldn’t work for him for … obvious reasons.
He spends most of “Hocus Pocus 2” attempting to help the ladies get what they need for the “Magica Maxima” spell, which will make Winifred all-powerful. Fast forward a bit, and he does manage to obtain everything they need. But there’s a catch that Winifred missed; in order to complete the spell, she must trade that which she holds most dear. You might think that would be her youth, considering eternal youth is what she and her sisters have always been after.
But you’d be wrong. As it turns out, Winifred truly loves her sisters. So, when the spell eventually takes effect, Mary and Sarah disappear in a very Marvel-esque way, dissolving slowly into sparkles. Having realized what she’s done, Winifred begs her book to bring her sisters back, even if it means giving up her powers.
The problem is, book can’t bring them back — what’s done is done. But thanks to Becca’s own newfound powers (because as it turns out, she’s a witch too! But she’s a good witch) she and her friends can cast a different spell. This one sends Winifred to her sisters, and in the end, she disappears happily, knowing she’ll be with her family.
The good news, at least for the Sanderson Sisters, is that this time, they didn’t explode in a cloud of dust thanks to the morning sun, as they did in the first movie. But nonetheless, it appears they’re gone forever. So, at first glance, the answer to a possible “Hocus Pocus 3” seems to be a resounding “no.”
But you should probably watch through the entire credits roll, because there’s a scene after that that just might open up the possibility of one more movie.
In the scene, we see Cobweb the cat — who is definitely not Thackery Binx — roaming around Gilbert’s magic shop, hopping from shelf to shelf. Eventually he lands on a high shelf behind the counter, next to a box. The camera pans down a bit, and the box is clearly labeled “B.F. Candle, #2.”
That, of course, stands for “Black Flame candle #2” — meaning Gilbert successfully made a second Black Flame candle, in addition to the one he gave Becca for her birthday. And clearly, he knew how to do it correctly, considering his first homemade one worked quite well. So theoretically, a third movie is possible, assuming that wherever the Sanderson sisters disappeared to this time is somewhere they can return from.
We suppose we’ll just have to wait and see.