This is the first of what will be a regular feature on here. I will be putting up gif posts with inspiring and positive words of the day for everyone. I hope you enjoy them and find them fun. Without further ado, here’s the first post.
Feel good about yourself, you may not be as handsome as this guy above, but you’re all good-looking people in different and special ways.
In this blogging community, we all have each other. So when you feel like no one is listening, talk to fellow bloggers. We’re always here and always appreciative of kindness.
And don’t forget to let your hair down once in a while and just have fun.
And here it is, the final season of Charmed. After eight years of battling demons and evil, it’s time for the sisters to take a bow in style. Some of the early stuff this season may be a bit flawed, but once it hits its stride it emerges as an excellent and emotional final season of a truly magical show. Major spoilers will follow in my review.
After the events of Season 7 when the girls were presumed dead after battling Zankou, Piper(Holly Marie Combs), Phoebe(Alyssa Milano) and Paige(Rose McGowan) along with Leo(Brian Krause) have taken on new identities and have decided to lead a demon-free life that they have always wanted. Yet no matter how hard they try, there is still their calling and events that show them that they can’t run from destiny, it is what they were born to do. After much discussion, the girls change back to themselves again, with the help of a friendly Homeland Security agent named Agent Murphy who covers for them by saying they faked their deaths as they were working for the government. Murphy occasionally asks the girls for help in strange cases that come his way. Now with the demon fighting back, the girls are busier than ever stopping the spread of evil, but this time they have help. A young feisty witch Billie Jenkins(Kaley Cuoco), becomes Paige’s charge and trains as a witch under the girls, often getting into trouble because of her free spirit and rebellious attitude. Each sister has their dramas to deal with as well as collectively, as this season gets very eventful. Piper has to face the fact that with Leo now a mortal, she may well lose him. Her deepest fear comes true when the Angel of Death comes after him. Rather than just let him be taken, Piper and her sisters make a deal with the Angel of Destiny to freeze Leo until they succeed in a forthcoming battle that is ominously mentioned with intent. Phoebe is continuing her search for love, yet can’t seem to find it anywhere. She, while still in magical disguise, thinks she has found the one in Dex, an artist. But she feels like she can’t be herself around him with the disguise and she ends the relationship. She finally finds love later in the form of Coop, who is in fact a Cupid sent by the Elders. Paige, who is embracing many of her Whitelighter duties with having Billie as a charge, also finds love with cop Henry. Paige marries Henry and does inform him of her supernatural abilities, which he accepts after hesitation. Billie also has her own arc which concerns the kidnapping of her sister years before. With the help of the sisters, Billie finds Christy(Marnette Patterson) in the underworld, afraid and barely able to function. Yet this is a facade as Christy, after all her years in captivity has now become consumed by evil forces that have altered her sense of right and wrong. It is Christy who is in fact the threat that faces the sisters. The introduction of Christy brings the threads and hints of a battle full circle. Working alongside the newly reconstituted Triad, she poisons Billie against the sisters and draws the battle lines. With both sets of sisters against each other, it’s a devastating battle that leads to a moving time-travelling finale. Join me as I relive the many moments of Season 8 as our favourite witches sign off from the screen with a mix of drama, adventure and emotion.
I’ve heard many fans say that Charmed should have ended with Season 7, but I for one thought there was still more story to tell. I mean, the Season 7 finale was epic but it did leave the door open to more plot. The whole identity changing plot is alright but for me doesn’t really add that much to the show. Identity and the girls wanting normal lives has been explored before and should have really just been left. Once the girls are back to themselves, the season picks up a lot and gains more assertiveness and pace. It helps that the sisters are closer together now than they have ever been and while their lives are separate, their always linked somehow or someway. This is where the strength of Charmed comes from, the bond between them. It is a powerful tool that has kept the show going because we can relate to the girls and their feelings. Sisterhood also plays a key part with Billie and Christy, especially when Billie sides with her and it’s a battle of sisters.
I’ve heard people describe Season 8 as disjointed, but I personally find it very well done and crafted. There is the humour which is great for some one-liners, the romances of the girls and the dangerous threat of darkness they must face. So I really can’t see much of a problem with the season, except maybe a few of the opening episodes are a bit weak and Phoebe’s brief romance with Dex isn’t really that good. but do pick up as the show goes on. I can’t say that it is the best season but it certainly wraps things up nicely and has a whole lot of entertaining and emotional moments along the way. Highlights of this season are the heartbreaking goodbye between Piper and Leo when he is marked for death, Paige’s beautiful wedding in the Manor and the last two episodes of the show that I will go into detail about below.
The penultimate episode really kicks things up with an explosive showdown. Both sets of sisters invoke the powerful essence of The Hollow, a magical entity that consumes power and possesses the person with superhuman strength. After the pre-battle niceties, it’s down to business as rage burns. Because of the power that the both sides have, it causes the Manor to implode. Piper and Billie survive, but the other sisters die. It is around this time that Leo is brought back to help. The battle is one intense sequence and filled with outstanding special effects. The emotional fallout is even greater and leads us to the final ever episode, which ranks as one of Charmed’s finest hours. This episode is an emotional ride that involves Piper journeying to the past to prevent the battle and save her sisters. But by shifting in time, she goes through various events that bring family members from the past and future into the forefront. Grams, Patty, future Chris and Wyatt from the future, all play their parts in this amazing last hour. There is still the matter of Christy, but this time Billie can now see that there is no saving her sister and is forced to kill her in self-defence and join the Charmed Ones as a loyal friend. There’s just something so beautiful and moving about the final episode as it wraps things up, respectfully tips its hat to old episodes and lets us watch as Piper, Phoebe and Paige finally fulfill their long destiny. I love seeing the futures of the girls, with Piper and Leo growing old together, Phoebe married to Coop with children and Paige also having children with husband Henry and finding her identity while each reflecting through narration their respective journeys as witches and women and all that it has taught them. Trust me, if you don’t feel moved by the finale, you don’t have a heart.
The acting for this season is of a high standard, especially from the central trio. I can’t praise the chemistry between them enough, it’s so convincing and beautiful to put into words. The growth of each of the sisters is also worthy of praise as they have evolved throughout the years. Holly Marie Combs is sarcastic but loving as Piper, who is the beating heart and glue of the family. Combs just brings the warmth out in Piper and the kick ass side when battling demonic activity. Alyssa Milano is beautiful and full of passion as Phoebe, discovering that destiny does in fact lead in the right direction when love is concerned. I must say I’m not the biggest fan of Coop, but I was happy to see Phoebe finally settle down with someone she truly loved. Rose McGowan brings the vivacious and understanding nature of Paige out, as she accepts her Whitelighter duties once more and manages to balance her life. I loved Paige’s marriage to Henry, as he was a mortal who understood her magic and may have not always agreed with it, but still loved her. As I said earlier, the three leading ladies have embodied these characters so well for so long that you can see they have incorporated parts of themselves into the characters and have also grown in the process. These are indelible characters that I will never forget for as long as I live. Brian Krause may be absent for half of the season, but when he’s on the screen he makes up for it with the earnestness and love that he invests Leo with. Kaley Cuoco plays Billie as perky, bratty and sassy and does lighten the show a bit. In some of the emotional scenes she doesn’t quite convince, but she’s a pleasing enough character. Marnette Patterson makes for an angered presence of being consumed by evil and brings out the devious side of Christy that is determined to take down the sisters.
- Still Charmed and Kicking – C
- Malice in Wonderland – D
- Run, Piper, Run – B+
- Desperate Housewitches – D-
- Rewitched – B
- Kill Billie Vol 1 – B-
- The Lost Picture Show – C
- Battle of the Hexes – D
- Hulkus Pocus – B
- Vaya Con Leos – A
- Mr and Mrs Witch – C
- Payback’s a Witch – B+
- Repo Manor – B+
- 12 Angry Zen – B
- The Last Temptation of Christy – C+
- Engaged and Confused – B+
- Generation Hex – C-
- The Torn Identity – B+
- The Jung and the Restless – A
- Gone with the Witches – A
- Kill Billie Vol 2 – A+
- Forever Charmed – A+
So aside from a few flaws which are ironed out later, Season 8 of Charmed is a stunning send off to Piper, Phoebe and Paige and one that ensures the show will remain in my heart forever. I hope everyone has enjoyed reading my reviews of Charmed, as I most certainly have enjoyed revisiting this magical show once more.
Although Season 6 was marked by a return to the goofball elements of comedy, it was redeemed by an emotional and dark finale. Thankfully Season 7 of Charmed continues the darker vein and gets the stories back on track with seriousness and depth. Spoilers will follow in this review of the penultimate season.
Everyone is reeling from Gideon’s betrayal and attempt to kill baby Wyatt in the finale of last season. Piper is concerned about keeping baby Chris safe, while Leo(Brian Krause) is consumed by anger and goes on a demon hunting spree to purge his hate. In his confusion he accidentally kills another Elder, which leaves his ridden with guilt. He is further haunted by strange whispers and faces. These are later revealed to be the Avatars( who were glimpsed in Season 5), beings who want to create a Utopia where good and evil are no more. Elsewhere, Phoebe(Alyssa Milano) feels a lack of direction without her active powers and takes a break from her professional work. Her desire and purpose eventually flood back when she rediscovers her selflessness again and her powers are restored. She has a little dalliance with her handsome ghost writer at the paper Leslie, but her constant absences and family emergencies make sure it isn’t a full-blown union. Yet while she believes that she won’t find love she gets some guidance from an unlikely source. Paige(Rose McGowan) fights for Magic School to stay open and becomes the headmistress, meaning she can at least have a job where she doesn’t have to hide the fact that she’s a witch. She also becomes involved with Agent Brody(Kerr Smith), a federal agent who knows about the Avatars and wants to stop them. Leo eventually becomes one of them and convinces Piper, Phoebe and Paige to agree to this new world. Brody tries to avert this but is killed in the process, which leaves Paige emotionally distraught. Yet after everything has been changed, Leo sees that the Avatars erase people from this world that create conflict. The sisters come to an agreement with the Avatars to change the world back to what it once was, because the world needs both good and evil to keep the cosmic balance. The girls also have Inspector Sheridan(Jenya Lano) on their backs, who suspects that the girls are up to something bad, despite the warnings from Darryl(Dorian Gregory) that they are good people. Darryl, who hasn’t really seen eye to eye with the sisters, begins to help them again to avoid suspicion. But this becomes the least of the girls worries as a new threat rears its head and comes after the girls. This time evil is the very powerful Zankou(Oded Fehr), who will stop at nothing to kill them and mounts a full-scale war that may well have fatal consequences for the sisters.
A lot of the success of Season 7 is the return of consistency and a grander set of events. There is scope to this season and I’ve always felt it was split into halves.In the first half, we have the Avatars posing ambiguous questions and challenging the natural order. They do have the sisters question the world In the second half, we have the ruthless Zankou and his attempts to kill the sisters, which pushes them harder than ever before. Both halves are excellently observed as we are given two threats one after the other. The two halves do overlap occasionally but they flow well together. And excusing the occasional dull episode, Season 7 regains control of the structure and makes us invested as well as entertained. The humour is still there but kept to controlled level rather than overload, so that it ties nicely in with the darkness. A certain feeling of epic battle looms large and leads to an explosive and interesting finale with Zankou hungry for power and death. It’s clear that the producers are gearing up for the last season with this finale.
Another driving force of Season 7 is Piper and Leo’s relationship being tested once more. Leo, after being tried by the Elders for turning to the Avatars and also killing a fellow Elder, and sent on a quest where he has no memory manages to make his way to her again as proof that they are meant to be together. Leo may be stripped of his powers as an Elder and a Whitelighter, but he is relieved as it won’t tear him away from his family. Once again, the love shared by Piper and Leo shines through the adversity as they officially get back together as a married couple in moving fashion. The amount of personal emotion in Season 7 is very much evident here as well as Phoebe regaining her faith in love after listening to Drake( Billy Zane), a former demon now turned good who makes her see that someday she will find the one she has been looking for. Charmed’s main heart has always been emotional ties and family and this season definitely taps into them more than ever. Season 3 and Season 4 may be my favourites, but the excellence of Season 7 places it just behind them because of its greatness and depth. There are only two flaws in the season and both revolve around two newer characters. The first is Leslie, Phoebe’s brief beau who is also her ghost writer while she takes a break. I just never felt any connection between the two. I can get that they wanted to have him as a hunky love interest, but it never worked out that well. The other is Inspector Sheridan, who was introduced in the closing half of Season 6. I just don’t like her character, she doesn’t really contribute anything to the story except hassle the girls. None of this is the fault of Jenya Lano, but the character just seems so bland. Plus we’ve already had the girls under surveillance story been done before and far more effectively.
I must give special mention to some wonderful highlights of this season, which overflows with greatness. The girls morphing into vicious beasts because of the blue moon. Paige and Kyle being sucked into a detective novel and embracing the allure of Noir. That episode is one of the finest hours of the show, with the black and white cloaking events in that old-fashioned celluloid glow and Paige looking sensational as a femme fatale. The sisters protecting a Seer( a wonderful Charisma Carpenter) from evil forces. Kyle’s death and Paige’s reaction are sad scenes that really deliver the emotional grip. The girls seeing that the new Utopia is not as perfect as it appears brilliantly shows that there are grey areas of existence that are hard to let go of. The touching scene of Kyle, who has been made a Whitelighter following his death, bidding goodbye to Paige is heart-wrenching. Piper slipping into a coma and being greeted by someone she never thought she’d see again. The assortment of supporting characters is excellent, with Billy Zane, Charisma Carpenter and Kerr Smith standing out in their respective roles. And not forgetting the climactic battle with the devious Zankou that gets explosive and deadly.
The wonderful cast brings their A-game to this season and turn in excellent work. Holly Marie Combs excels at playing Piper as the resourceful and responsible oldest sister, trying to keep everything under control and attempting to stay strong in dire circumstances. An added plus is the convincing chemistry and personal emotion with Brian Krause, who plays Leo as tormented and frightened, yet brought back to his senses by his wife. Leo may be a mortal when he falls from his grace, but it brings him closer than ever before with the women he loves above anything else. Alyssa Milano is effervescent yet driven as Phoebe, discovering that while love hasn’t always treated her right, there is still hope out there in time. Phoebe seems more at ease this season, having seen that her selflessness is what drives her on and her bond with her family is most important. Rose McGowan rounds out the trio as the wilful Paige, experiencing deep love and sorrow but managing to make her way through it. Her romance with Kyle may have been brief, but it was observed so greatly that it was moving. It gave Paige extra defiance and opinions than ever before, and that is what I’ve always liked about her so to see it expanded on was a big plus. McGowan has clearly grown in the role of Paige, charting her venture from reluctant sister to dedicated and passionate woman. As the vicious demon Zankou, Oded Fehr exudes a sly and ruthless aura that is very disquieting and makes him one of the best foes that the sisters have faced. And this season we bid farewell to Dorian Gregory as Darryl. His mix of bewildered emotions and honesty over the years will be missed but he ensures that he won’t be forgotten in the Charmed universe.
- A Call to Arms – B
- The Bare Witch Project – C+
- Cheaper by the Coven – B+
- Charrrmed! – C
- Styx Feet Under – B
- Once in a Blue Moon – B
- Someone to Witch Over Me – C
- Charmed Noir – A+
- There’s Something About Leo – B
- Witchness Protection – A
- Ordinary Witches – C-
- Extreme Makeover: World Edition – A
- Charmageddon – A+
- Carpe Demon – D
- Show Ghouls – C
- The Seven Year Witch – A
- Scry Hard – B
- Little Box of Horrors – B
- Freaky Phoebe – D-
- Imaginary Fiends – B
- Death Becomes Them – A
- Something Wicca This Way Goes – A
Charmed Season 7 makes for eventful and emotional viewing that takes its place as another excellent season of supernatural battles and drama.
With Season 6, Charmed stumbles a little with trying to incorporate too many arcs and situations. While Season 5 had an episodic approach, Season 6 takes it to the next level and results in some low points. Yet for all of the confusion, it still becomes enjoyable due to the cast, writing and appeal of the show. Warning, spoilers will definitely follow in this review.
Piper(Holly Marie Combs) is raising Wyatt after Leo( Brian Krause) became an Elder and they separated. Strangely though, Piper has been unusually jovial as of late, which alarms Phoebe(Alyssa Milano) and Paige( Rose McGowan). Unbeknownst to the girls but known to the audience, Leo is not up in the heavens but trapped somewhere else. Chris( Drew Fuller), who arrived from the future scattered his orbs and he ended up in the mythical island of Valhalla. Chris is still very mysterious even though he tells the sisters that he is there to ensure that Wyatt is not turned evil, which was the case in his future. After Paige and Phoebe rescue Leo from Valhalla which is watched over by Valkyries, Piper emotions flood back and she vents her pain and torment at Leo leaving her. Leo had in fact used his magic to ease Piper’s pain after seeing how destructive it could be. The two eventually agree to part ways, with Leo still able to see his son. Meanwhile, Chris begins sending the sisters after various demons and teaching them various lessons in less than truthful ways. It transpires that Chris is not just a Whitelighter from the future, he is Piper and Leo’s son. He came back to ensure that his parents got back together and to stop the spread of evil in the future. One this is established, Piper and Leo, who still love one another, resume their relationship after much soul-searching and she becomes pregnant with baby Chris. Chris’s sense of timing begins to fit into place and all the things he has done begin to have more meaning. Phoebe, on the other hand, is getting more serious with boyfriend Jason. Yet she feels that she needs to tell him about her identity as a witch and demon fighter. Unfortunately, when Jason finds out accidentally, he can’t handle it and he parts ways with Phoebe. A vision of the future in which she has a child makes Phoebe determined yet a little selfish as she begins to neglect her duties as a witch in the hopes of finding Mr. Right . Add to that her inheritance of the power of empathy and things are going to get very complicated. Paige is doing a few temp jobs after seeing that she does need some life outside of her magical duties. Yet, everywhere she turns, magic seems to follow her. Even in her love life, magic is there in the form of Richard, who attempts not to use magic but becomes alarmingly addicted to it. Together, while battling the demons, the girls must figure out who is after Wyatt. It is in fact, though for a while it is disguised, an Elder named Gideon, consumed by evil but posing as good. Gideon wants to kill the boy as he has seen the huge amount of power he will yield. Family matters, fierce battles and conflicting emotions will all come to the forefront in the Charmed One’s attempts to save young Wyatt.
Season 6, out of all the seasons, is probably the most inconsistent. While certain plot arcs are interesting to explore, there is a sense of lurching from one idea to another without much thought. It returns Charmed to goofball territory, and while it has always been there, it was always kept under control and contained. Here it makes it almost frothy with soap opera overtones that don’t do the show justice. Episodes such as the one in which Paige and Phoebe conjure up a hunky Mr Right for Piper and the girls protecting Excalibur feel tacked on and don’t really serve much of a purpose in the grand design of things. And the other flaw is Paige’s love interest as Richard. I just don’t find him to be the most interesting guy and doesn’t really make an impact. The writers must have caught on to this as he was soon written out after Paige sees that his use of magic is no good.
What Charmed doesn’t lose is that sense of magic and love that makes it work so well, despite the flaws that sometimes intervene. My enthusiasm for Charmed will never be erased. This does lead to some highlights. The sight of the sisters posing as Valkyries, clad in Xena Warrior Princess style leather bra and mini skirts is supremely sexy. That scene certainly makes an impact filled opening to the season and an image which is unforgettable. A trio of trashy blonde witches steal the girls powers and identities, leaving the girls unknown until they fight back against the troika of trampy sisters. A vicious spider demon that cocoons its victims before consuming their life force targets them. And the epic finale makes up for a lot of the season’s flaws with the sisters facing evil doubles of themselves in a battle to ensure Wyatt’s safety and that Chris turns out fine, hoping to send him back to the right place without having repercussions. The whole Gideon trying to murder Wyatt story at least incorporates a welcome sense of darkness and danger into the mix. We are even introduced to Magic School, a protected place where people can learn about the craft without the pressures of the outside world and the demon attacks. Phoebe’s new power of empathy leads to some very funny moments, as she intercepts people’s emotions without them even realising it and often results in misunderstandings with her sisters. It might be a weak season in comparison with other seasons, but at least it has heart to it and the Chris story line is very entertaining as we figure it out. And not forgetting the scenes of future Chris fading away after being stabbed by Gideon, only to be born as baby Chris shortly after that are touchingly shot and bound to leave a lump in the throat.
Alyssa Milano continues to flesh out Phoebe, now showing us the side that doesn’t want to always be selfless and wants to have something of her own. Yet while some of her actions are a bit selfish, there is a heart in there and you do see where she is coming from in regards to having a life as well as magic. Phoebe has always been compassionate and she hasn’t lost any of that in her journey as a woman and a witch. We also don’t take a dislike to Phoebe because of her sometimes neglect of Wiccan duties ( she does have her powers revoked for a while by the powers that be for abuse of magic), partly due to Milano giving Phoebe a relatability and driven but sexy personality. Plus, this does lead to her beginning to question whether she is cut out for love and sends her on a personal journey, so it’s not all bad. Holly Marie Combs brings her familiar combination of inner vulnerability, outer steel and wry sarcasm to Piper once again, as she confronts her heart, her feelings for Leo and attempts to protect her son from any evil that comes his way. Piper is a force of nature as both a witch and a mother, who people really shouldn’t mess with. It was so good to see Piper and Leo reunite as they are a beautiful couple whose love transcends all. Rose McGowan shines as the independent Paige, immersing herself in the part of the youngest sister and the most stubborn. It’s a trait that I’ve always liked about Paige, she never gives up or gives in and will fight for what she wants. Add to that McGowan’s expressive face and knack for humour, and Paige is an amazing character. The chemistry between the three is another factor that keeps the show successful, it’s such a believable bond that is beautiful and full of strength. Drew Fuller is a great addition to the story, with his character of Chris being enigmatic, angry yet neurotic at the same time. The whole Chris coming back from the future to make sure it turns out differently is one that always piqued my interest and Fuller is most of the reason for that. It takes what could have been a forgettable season and gives it a jolt, despite many of the flaws present. Brian Krause brings the necessary earnestness to Leo as he reunites with Piper and attempts to rectify wrongs with Chris from the future. It’s great to see Dorian Gregory given more screen time this season as Darryl. It helps that his story is deepened as he is nearly killed due to magic and begins to pull away from the girls in the belief that he will be safe.
- Valhalley of the Dolls Part 1 – C
- Valhalley of the Dolls Part 2 – C+
- Forget Me Not – B
- The Power of Three Blondes – B+
- Love’s a Witch – C
- My Three Witches – D
- Soul Survivor – C+
- Sword and the City – E
- Little Monsters – B+
- Chris-Crossed – B
- Witchstock – D-
- Prince Charmed – F
- Used Karma – B-
- The Legend of Sleepy Halliwell – C-
- I Dream of Phoebe – B+
- The Courtship of Wyatt’s Father – B
- Hyde School Reunion – E
- Spin City – B+
- Crimes and Witch-Demeanors – C-
- A Wrong Day’s Journey Into Right – B
- Witch Wars – B
- It’s a Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World Part 1 – A
- It’s a Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World Part 2 – A+
So it may be flawed and not as consistent and previous seasons, but Charmed Season 6 never loses its heart or sense of magic.
With Charmed Season 4 being the darker continuation of Season 3, I think the producers of Charmed decided to lighten the show up a bit more with this season. Needless to say, some of it works and some of it doesn’t. Season 5 is a mixed bag, but I don’t think it’s as bad as many fans make it out to be, which is thanks to the great cast and chemistry. Warning, spoilers will be following in this review.
In this eventful season, we firstly have Piper(Holly Marie Combs) going through her pregnancy with her first child. In the beginning, she is scared that she won’t be a good mother and occasionally panics about bringing a child into a life with supernatural threat. Eventually she manages to gain control and still take on her responsibility of a Charmed One and head of the family. She gives birth to a baby boy named Wyatt, in tribute to her husband Leo(Brian Krause). It was originally thought that the child would be a girl because of the tradition in the family, but Wyatt is no ordinary child. He has the powers of witchcraft from his mother and Whitelighter abilities from his father. However with Wyatt’s birth, comes the attempts from various demons to send him down the path of evil. Leo must also contend with the constant calling of The Elders, which begins to put a big strain on his union with Piper. Meanwhile, Phoebe(Alyssa Milano) is using her career as an advice columnist to take her mind of her demonic ex-husband Cole(Julian McMahon). Unfortunately while in the wasteland, Cole acquired many powers and found a way to return. While Phoebe still has feelings for him, she knows the relationship will never work and wants to move on with her life once and for all. Cole does not take lightly to this and makes many attempts to win her back, all while slipping into madness because of the powers he’s absorbed. Their relationship comes to an explosive end in the 100th episode, in which Cole is vanquished for good. And we have Paige(Rose McGowan) quitting her job as a social worker and taking on the studies of the craft to show her worth. On a witch kick, reminiscent of Prue, Paige emerges as a valuable member of the trio with power and compassion, when in the beginning she wasn’t sure of her place in the magical scheme of things. Yet even with the threat of Cole eliminated, there’s still multitudes of demons and warlocks all looking to kill The Charmed Ones. As personal feelings, supernatural threat and tough decisions abound, the girls must face these challenges head on.
I can understand the producers wanting to lighten the mood a little after the darkness of Season 4, but at times they go a bit too far. The influx of magical beings that the girls come into contact with becomes a bit too wacky with Leprechauns and nymphs needing their help in some questionable and ineffective episodes. Yet when the humour does succeed, it does make the season very enjoyable. Watching as Piper’s unborn baby plays various tricks on her powers is quite amusing as are some of the things the girls are transformed into, including latex wearing super heroines, a mermaid and in the finale Greek Goddesses. Saying this, Season 5 is not as bad as many make it out to be. Sure it may pale in comparison with the excellent last season, but it still retains excitement and creativity. If more time was taken to flesh out a few more ideas and have a bit more consistency, it would have been truly amazing. Yet we do have some standout episodes that include; the girls being trapped in versions of fairy tales, them protecting a gypsy tribe from a vision-stealing hunter, a wicked crone stealing their sense in an attempt to turn Wyatt evil and Cole altering the universe to his own design, but paying the price in the end.
Thankfully, Season 5 doesn’t go completely overboard with the humour and at least ties up some loose ends with emotional clarity. Chief among these is the end of Phoebe and Cole’s relationship. This was the right time to wrap up the story line and give it a bittersweet goodbye. Cole may try to win Phoebe back, but can’t deny the evil that has always been within him. It’s sad to see Cole go because he’s such a great character, but at least he has a great farewell to boot. Watching the relationship on its emotional ride has been well done, but this was the right time to tie the story up once and for all. The introduction of Wyatt gives the show a lot of possibilities and the challenge of Piper and Leo’s marriage which eventually becomes estranged is movingly observed. I think because of the over reliance on the light this season, people tend to forget that there are some very emotional moments here, chief of all Cole’s vanquish and Leo becoming an Elder, which in turn means he must part with Piper. The emotional separation between Piper and Leo is a real tearjerker if ever there was one and if you don’t at least cry a single tear, you don’t have a heart. Plus, the intriguing first appearance of Chris, the Whitelighter sent from the future who is very mysterious and will soon play an integral role in the show. Season 5 may not be the best season of Charmed, but at least the emotional investment and ties are still as moving as ever and believable.
The cast is on great form, as we’ve grown with these characters and their traits. Holly Marie Combs continues to impress as Piper, investing her with deep emotions and tough strength. Having always been the most maternal, having a baby gives Piper that extra kick of steely protectiveness of her family and those closest to her. The exploration of her relationship with Leo as they part is movingly observed, mainly due to the sheer amount of emotion that Combs puts into the sad scene. Alyssa Milano shines as Phoebe, who just wants to move on with her life after Cole. She gains an added sense of liberation when this happens. I liked how their relationship played out as it was obvious they both deeply loved one another, but somehow it just wasn’t meant to be. It’s also nice to see Phoebe become involved with a normal guy for once, in this case Jason, the owner of the paper Phoebe works at. After all the pain Phoebe has endured, she at least deserves another shot at love and Milano makes her lovable and mature at the same time. And this is the season where I think Paige really blossoms. As played by the excellent Rose McGowan, Paige is smart, quick-witted and kooky. McGowan makes Paige a joy to watch as she embraces her gifts and becomes a fully fledged witch, while also adhering to Whitelighter duties. This is the season where Paige finally feels like a part of the family after her initial reluctance. Brian Krause is given more to do as Leo and infuses him with the wrestling of decision between his calling and his family. Julian McMahon bows out of Charmed in style by portraying Cole as inherently despicable but also a very tragic character who has made his mark on the show. Dorian Gregory is seen way too infrequently this season as Darryl. This is a shame as I do find his character quite funny and endearing in the scheme of things.
- A Witch’s Tail Part 1 – C
- A Witch’s Tail Part 2 – C+
- Happily Ever After – B+
- Siren Song – B
- Witches in Tights – C-
- The Eyes Have It – A
- Sympathy for the Demon – B
- A Witch In Time – A
- Sam I Am – B-
- Y Tu Mummy Tambien – D
- The Importance of Being Phoebe – C
- Centennial Charmed – A+
- House Call – C+
- Sand Francisco Dreamin – C
- The Day the Magic Died – C
- Baby’s First Demon – B-
- Lucky Charmed – E
- Cat House – B
- Nymphs Just Wanna Have Fun – F
- Sense and Sense Ability – A+
- Necromancing the Stone – C
- Oh My Goddess! Part 1 – B-
- Oh My Goddess! Part 2 – B+
Despite some noticeable weaknesses during this season’s run, Season 5 of Charmed is still entertaining and enjoyable.
Following the tragic ending to Season 3, I think a lot of people were wondering how Charmed could carry on without Prue in it. They found their solution in the casting of another sister, portrayed by Rose McGowan. Interestingly, this new cast member fits excellently into the scheme of things and brings forth the theme of adjustment that makes Season 4 so great. With the continuing darkness of the last season, it proves Season 4 is another entertaining and enthralling entry in the Charmed universe. Be warned, spoilers will follow.
We begin with the emotional fallout following Prue’s death. Piper(Holly Marie Combs) is taking it particularly badly as she has always had someone older than her to lean on. Despite having guardian angel and husband Leo(Brian Krause) there for comfort, Piper initially can’t handle what has happened. Phoebe(Alyssa Milano) feels sadness but attempts to remain strong by focusing her energies on protecting half demon lover Cole(Julian McMahon), as there is a bounty on his head courtesy of The Source. With Prue’s death, The Power of Three is severed and Piper and Phoebe are now more open to demonic threat. Yet through strange events another person comes into their life. This person is Paige Matthews(Rose McGowan), who it transpires is their half-sister that they never knew about. The girl’s mother had an affair with her Whitelighter which resulted in her giving birth to this magical child. In order to keep it secret from The Elders, they had her adopted at birth. Paige is independent, feisty yet also sympathetic. Her powers which stem from her Whitelighter side include orbing herself and objects around her. As Piper and Phoebe welcome her into their circle after initial hesitation, Paige begins to find it difficult having led such a seemingly normal life and now battling evil. She does eventually get the hang of it and harness the craft. With The Power of Three restored again, the girls are powerful once more as well as closer. And they’re going to need to be with The Source attempting to kill them on a regular basis. Yet even when it appears that they vanquish The Source, he finds a way to come back and turns Cole back to the dark side once more. With evil now consuming him and aided by the intelligent but cunning Seer( Debbi Morgan), Cole transpires to make Phoebe his dark queen of evil. So in the midst of battling demons, Phoebe must make her choice: fulfill her destiny as a Charmed one or transfer to the side of evil in order to be with her beloved.
With Shannen Doherty not on the show, you can imagine that it was a big gamble to introduce a new character into the mix. But it actually works having another sister as it gives a new dynamic to the girls. Piper shifts from being the middle sister to the strong-willed oldest, although this adjustment is painful for her. Phoebe, having always been the most free-spirited is now the middle sister, trying to keep peace and be level-headed. And the newest addition Paige is spontaneous, sexy and initially reluctant to make sense of her role in this circle. It helps that McGowan works so well with her co-stars and gradually shows us the growing bond that heals the broken Power of Three. Season 4 also succeeds based on the dark overtones carried over from Season 3. The presence of death is always there, from Prue’s untimely demise to the various threats that want to eliminate the girls, death is surrounding all of them. Plus battling The Source( we actually see his monstrous face this season) and then contending with demonic Cole provides for explosive action. The episode in which they battle The Source is one of the best episodes in the show’s run with excitement, dread and magic all playing their parts. Once more, there is a consistency throughout Season 4 that puts it up there with the best work in the show. Season 3 has the advantage of being my favourite, but Season 4 comes an extremely close second. Sure there’s the odd dud episode here and there, but the overall quality is high.
What is really impressive over the course of this season is the way in which it gives mostly equal time to each sister’s arcs. Phoebe has the biggest arc this time, with her precarious love for a tempted Cole putting her in a particularly difficult position. It’s interesting to see how much Phoebe has grown up now, and how being now in the middle of two sisters, she has a greater understanding of how Piper used to feel. Phoebe is full of passion for Cole and is turned to side of evil by him for a time and realises that she’s carrying a child of pure evil, but Phoebe’s heart is good and true and this is what stops her from fully transitioning to demon queen. When she and her sisters finally vanquish evil Cole( fear not fans of Cole, he finds a way to return), you can see the devastation on her face at the result of her doomed romance. The vanquish then leads to a heartfelt scene in which Piper and Paige silently comfort a sobbing Phoebe. By the linking of hands and embraces, their care for their sister is rendered beautifully without any words. Phoebe must then contend with carrying the heir to evil and The Seer attempting to steal it. Eventually, the child proves too strong for The Seer when she gets it and she is vanquished by its great power.
Piper is portrayed now as the most maternal sister as she manages to harness her newer power and use it well. It is only right that she discuss the possibility of having a child with Leo, but Piper is still unsure of whether it is safe for a child in a world full of demons and danger. Piper has clearly evolved from how she was originally in Season 1, in terms of both personal and emotional strength. And with now having to fill the shoes of her deceased sister, Piper continues to slowly grow stronger as the head of the family. Piper may have always been the glue to the family, but now she must embrace her role as the oldest and most responsible of the sisters.
The character of Paige gives us fun and vibrancy, with a dash of awkwardness at getting to know her long-lost sisters after being independent for most of her life. But that’s not all, we glimpse a sadness to Paige that stems from her adopted parent’s death in a car wreck when she was a rebellious teenager. In one of the strongest episodes of the season, she journeys back to discover what happened. What she learns is that none of it was not her fault, there was nothing she could do to stop their death. Although she does see that she managed to survive by accidentally orbing out of the car before it crashed and this answers her question of why she didn’t perish. Paige is such a great character that slots into the scheme of things with her stubborn personality and compassion making her relatable, as well as her suspicions that Cole is back to his old self again.
Once more, the cast of Charmed delivers with great performances for all. Alyssa Milano continues to impress in the role of Phoebe and now shows her mature and grounded side. Although she can still be impulsive and still have a sense of fun, having to be the middle sister changes her a lot as she takes on the mediator role between experienced Piper and novice Paige. Milano really sells it all the way, especially in Phoebe’s turn to evil for a time. Phoebe, as have all of her sisters, has at one point or another been taken over by evil and been able to fight it. But this time, she really comes close to becoming a dangerous force of evil. The newest addition to the cast, Rose McGowan, slots in very nicely as Paige. McGowan gives Paige a sense of fun and a compassionate core that manifests itself in her job as a social worker. Paige really has to grow quickly and learn the craft and while she may find it difficult, she shows that she is a talented and powerful third of The Power of Three. Rose McGowan works excellently alongside Holly Marie Combs and Alyssa Milano to create a fresh dynamic within the sisters that grows as the season progresses. Holly Marie Combs exudes the struggle of changing roles as Piper becomes the responsible older one, twinned with a vulnerability. With the moving delivery of Combs, Piper begins to embrace the role and take on the maternal side of her personality. Just like with Phoebe, it is great to see the growth that Piper has gone through and how she is now becoming a commanding person.
Julian McMahon excels at showing Cole being taken over by evil with malicious glee and a sinister smile. There is still a part of the character that loves Phoebe, but it is not enough to overcome the evil that has always been inside of him. Although Brian Krause isn’t given as much to do this season as Leo as he has in previous seasons, he still makes his presence felt with his humane words and guiding spirit aiding the girls. Dorian Gregory portraying Darryl becomes more involved with his protective nature and his deep appreciation of the girls. This is probably the first season in which Darryl faces a lot of the dangers that the girls experience which in turn draws him closer to them. It helps that Gregory is given more material to work with than before and does it excellently. Special mention for this season has to go to Debbi Morgan in her portrayal of The Seer. Sneaky, wise and silver-tongued, she knows exactly what she wants and how to manipulate others to get it. Morgan is clearly having a ball playing this despicable character with her throaty voice and sneaky grins, while adding that sense of mystery surrounding The Seer.
- Charmed Again Part 1- A
- Charmed Again Part 2- A
- Hell Hath No Fury- B+
- Enter the Demon – C-
- Size Matters – D
- A Knight to Remember – B
- Brain Drain – A
- Black as Cole – B-
- Muse to My Ears – B+
- A Paige from the Past – A
- Trial by Magic – D
- Lost and Bound – B+
- Charmed and Dangerous – A+
- The Three Faces of Phoebe – C
- Marry-Go-Round – B
- The Fifth Halliwheel – A
- Saving Private Leo – B-
- Bite Me – B
- We’re Off to See the Wizard – B+
- Long Live the Queen – A
- Womb Raider – B
- Witch Way Now? – B
Fresh, intriguing and often quite moving, Season 4 of Charmed is proof that a show can bounce back after losing a cast member and still be successful.
With Season 3, Charmed becomes darker and more personal. And with that, it emerges as probably my favourite season of the entire show’s run. Season 1 and Season 2 were amazing and carefully balanced humour, sisterly relationships and the elements of supernatural, but with this season, we get a welcome dash of seriousness and poignant emotion. This gives Season 3 a necessary drama as we see the Halliwell’s face demons, discover some eventful family history and experience eventual tragedy. Be warned readers, major spoilers will follow in this review.
Prue( Shannen Doherty), Piper(Holly Marie Combs) and Phoebe(Alyssa Milano) Halliwell continue to battle demons, taking down the supernatural foes that come their way in the hope of stopping the spread of evil and protecting the greater good. The burden of this often weighs heavy upon the girls, but as it is their destiny to be protectors of good, they don’t really have a choice. In fact, Prue takes centre stage this season and announces herself as supremely powerful and capable. She may have wanted a normal life at the start of the show, but now with their Wiccan destiny there, Prue has taken it by the horns and has become a very quick study in all things supernatural. She can now channel her power for great potential and is clearly someone you shouldn’t trifle with. Piper has taken her relationship with Leo(Brian Krause) to the next step and becomes engaged, despite the trepidation of The Elders. Through Piper’s deep love, the veil that has protected the union between witches and Whitelighters marrying is lifted and Piper finally marries her beloved. Plus, Piper gains a new power to blow things up with a wave of her hands which she at first struggles to control but comes in very handy when battling evil. And last but not least is Phoebe( who acquires the new power of levitation), meeting someone who will have a deep impact on her life. That person is Cole Turner(Julian McMahon), a charming district attorney who takes a romantic interest in Phoebe which of course she reciprocates. Secretly though, Cole is half demon( his vicious demonic state is known as Belthazor) and has been sent to kill the Charmed Ones by The Triad, a group of exceptionally evil demons who want to assume power. What Cole hasn’t bargained for is genuinely falling for Phoebe and thus putting his mission to kill her in jeopardy. All of this leads Phoebe to a crisis when she does find out the true nature of Cole as she has deeply fallen for him. And though the sisters must vanquish him, Phoebe lies to protect Cole from harm as she can’t let go of him. Yet when her sisters find out it is a hard task explaining this to them, especially to Prue who suspected Cole all along. Add to this The Source getting stronger and gearing up for an attack on the sisters, and we have one hell of a season that comes to a highly charged and devastating finale.
What really gives Season 3 that something special is the sense of consistency in it and the emotions that are drawn out. While Charmed is a heavily serialized show, there is a greater sense of overriding events here. The stories that populate the season are darker and more mature than before and while not every episode is perfect, the majority of them this season are outstanding, well-written and acted with excellence( as many people may have gathered by my mostly high episode ratings at the bottom of this review). The themes of deep love come to the forefront as Piper finally marries Leo and Phoebe falls for the devilish Cole and must consider the consequences. A poignant sense of emotion pervades Season 3 as threats become more personal to the girls and their magic is constantly tested by every force of evil imaginable. There is still the humour there for enjoyment, but a greater sense of maturity added to the mix. We finally glimpse The Source, although he is hooded and enshrouded with mystery. But just from hearing his deep voice and his deceptive ways lets us know that he will be one hellish evil that will challenge the sisters. And with this season thankfully, things we’ve been wondering about are explained. We get to see The Elders and their heavenly domain and the girl’s father manages to patch things up after being absent for so long because he wanted to steer clear of the world of witches and demons. I liked how this season brought these to attention and finally addressed them properly.
The most emotional and sad moment of this season is the death of Prue in the finale. Prue has always been the most assured and powerful sister who has to take responsibility. So to have her die at the hands of The Source’s henchman while trying to save an innocent is such a tragedy and definitely makes for wrenching viewing. As we’ve watched her grow along with her sisters, we’ve developed a bond with her. I have noticed that leading up to the tragedy there are subtle references to death among the sisters that manifests itself in different forms. The finale is one powerhouse of an episode of danger, demons and tragedy that ranks as my favourite episode in the show’s entire run because it takes risks and delivers emotional viewing. And with that, we are left wondering how the show can continue with the Power of Three severed.
It may be her last season on the show, but Shannen Doherty still gives one hell of an impact as Prue. Tough, wise, protective yet compassionate, Prue has truly grown since becoming a witch. Doherty brings out that inner strength and sensitive side and works wonders with it. It may be her last season, but Doherty makes sure her part will never be forgotten in the Charmed canon. And I do believe it is very fitting that Doherty herself directed her last episode which is truly a testament to her abilities. On a side note, Doherty also directs another very good episode during the season in which she is sent into a time portal of the Wild West that will keep repeating until justice is served. Holly Marie Combs continues to convey deep emotions and passion as Piper, who is taking control of her life for good. Combs just makes you feel every emotion that Piper is feeling through small and subtle things. Piper is the main heart of the show and her love for Leo is the loveliest relationship as we see their struggles, but ultimately their undying love for each other. It’s very nice to see Piper still in control but not afraid to let her hair down in one particular episode. OK, she may be possessed by a demon when she table dances in leather, but it definitely provides a different and sexy side to Piper and a very memorable moment of an excellently constructed season. Alyssa Milano excellently brings forth the sympathetic yet confused side of Phoebe out as she wrestles with her love for half-demon Cole. You can’t help but feel sorry for Phoebe in that the first guy she genuinely loves turns out to be mainly evil. Phoebe has always been the sister to wear her heart on her sleeve and see the good in people, but here it puts her in jeopardy yet also in the face of her true love. Just like Piper’s relationship with Leo, being in love with Cole proves hard for Phoebe as she is torn about whether he can remain good because he loves her or that he will revert back to being Belthazor. This is the season that really lets all the sisters get a moment to shine. For Prue there is her showing of strength, reconciliation with her estranged father and her tragic death. With Piper, there is her sexy table dance and magical wedding( attended by Grams and her mother in spirit form). And for Phoebe there is her defiance of her sisters and false vanquish of Cole.
Julian McMahon, being the newest person to cast is excellent as Cole. Caught between his desire for Phoebe and his evil nature, Cole is one interesting character added to the show. McMahon embodies the cunning, ruthless side to Cole with aplomb as well as the humane area that wants to be good for the sake of his love. I mean Cole even kills the Triad for the greater good, yet this in turn puts The Source higher up on the girl’s list of enemies and places him in extreme danger as the master of everything evil does not take kindly to people turning their backs on him. It also helps that McMahon has genuine chemistry with Alyssa Milano, which highlights the danger and passion of their union. Brian Krause provides understanding, brotherly care and a sense of determination to Leo as he watches over the girls and fulfills his beautiful relationship with Piper. As recurring aid Officer Darryl Morris, Dorian Gregory is likable, caring and sometimes bewildered by the various cases he investigates that tend to link back to the sisters who he considers family.
- The Honeymoon’s Over – C
- Magic Hour – C+
- Once Upon a Time – D-
- All Halliwell’s Eve – B
- Sight Unseen – B+
- Primrose Empath – A
- Power Outage – A
- Sleuthing with the Enemy – A
- Coyote Piper – B+
- We All Scream for Ice Cream – A
- Blinded by the Whitelighter – B
- Wrestling with Demons – D
- Bride and Gloom – B+
- The Good, the Bad and the Cursed – A
- Just Harried – B
- Death Takes a Halliwell – B+
- Pre-Witched – A+
- Sin Francisco – A
- The Demon Who Came in from the Cold – C-
- Exit Strategy – C+
- Look Who’s Barking – B
- All Hell Breaks Loose – A+
Darker, more deeply urgent and loaded with emotion, Charmed Season 3 is definitely my favourite season of the show.
Following on from the emotional finale of Season 1, Charmed returns more assured and expansive for a great second season that delivers thrills, laughs and battles. If it’s magic you want, you can’t go wrong with Charmed. Be warned, spoilers will be following in this review.
The bewitching trio of Halliwell sisters; Prue(Shannen Doherty), Piper( Holly Marie Combs) and Phoebe( Alyssa Milano) are back. In the beginning of the season, they are approaching their one year anniversary of receiving their powers. And while demon activity has been strangely quiet as of late, it soon begins to rear its head again and the girls must continue to honor their duties as good witches. Whilst having to vanquish all forms of evil to protect innocent people and their powers starting to grow, the sisters have other parts of their lives to deal with. Prue is still reeling from Andy’s death and considers giving up magic if it can’t help save loved ones. She then realises that she can’t deny magic as part of her existence and that she may have lost Andy, but it wasn’t her fault. She then begins to emerge as a dedicated witch( complete with her new power of astral projection), when before she feared its presence in her life. Piper has quit her job as a chef and attempts to open up a nightclub, not without a few issues first. When the spot opens, it is appropriately named P3. Piper is also dealing with the absence of Leo( Brian Krause), whose duties as a Whitelighter often scupper their time for romance. While she waits for Leo, Piper strikes up a relationship with handsome next door neighbour Dan Gordon( Greg Vaughan), who has moved in with his teenage niece Jenny( Karis Paige Bryant). Yet this proves hard for her, as Piper’s heart isn’t in the relationship as she loves Leo too much. Phoebe as the youngest, is still as rebellious and curious as ever. Yet she has matured slightly and now wants some responsibility in her life. Having always felt like the sister who is blamed a lot and the one who is the first to cause trouble, she sees that going back to college after she previously dropped out may be the way to get out of the rut and achieve something( while still battling evil on a weekly basis that is). There is also the matter of Darryl( Dorian Gregory), Andy’s former superior who looks out for the girls and eventually discovers their secret. Just as Andy had helped the girls with certain cases, Darryl assumes that position and becomes a vital ally to them when they need information.
The budget seems definitely well spent this time and the effects for the many forms of evil are pretty cool. The demons are stronger this time around and we learn of The Source, who rules the demon underworld and dispatches demons to take out the sisters ( he becomes a major threat in the future when he finally emerges from his confines). Following the groundwork of the great first season, the producers really step it up a gear to create many memorable moments in this excellent season. Some of the standout parts are Prue going undercover in demon circles as a sexy assassin clad in leopard fur and leather, the sisters being transported to a strange future to learn about their actions. Sure certain premises still have a goofy quality, they feel more controlled this time and flow better with the narrative. The writing is still a blast in the way it blends humour, pathos and action into a well made package. Plus nothing beats these girls vanquishing the evils of San Francisco in style. Season 2 also still has the deep emotional current throughout and addresses the importance of sisterhood and sticking by your family. The girls may still be learning about the craft but when things get tough, they always have each other, through thick and thin. There is a refreshing shift in personal growth in Season 2 as the sisters grow in terms of Wiccan power but also as young women. We get to see the healing of past wounds and how it makes the stronger by getting to grips with things.
There is also an extra dash of sexiness which is a definite plus, mainly coming from the revealing outfits and romantic interludes that the sisters have. And not all this sexy material is purely for the men in the audience, there’s plenty of it for the ladies. I mean there’s a spell that turns animals into hunky but dangerous men on Valentine’s Day, Prue having a heated dalliance with a convicted criminal on the run who isn’t all he seems and the girls reliving their past lives as flapper bad girls who lived in the Manor during the scandalous 1920’s.
The cast on Charmed definitely deliver the goods with aplomb. Shannen Doherty brings mature energy to the part of Prue, who begins to emerge as a confident witch in control of her powers and her life( seen when she quits her job at the auction house and deciding to make a job from her passion for photography). While Prue is often seen as the most serious sister out of The Charmed Ones, Shannen Doherty gives Prue a sense of fun this season that shows that Prue can have a laugh and let loose when she wants to but knows when to keep her emotions in check. Holly Marie Combs charts Piper’s emergence from meek middle sister to much stronger and sarcastic woman with great assurance. It is very pleasing to see Piper grow from being scared and vulnerable to gradually more assertive and feisty thanks to Combs stunning and convincing delivery. Her relationship with Leo is further explored beautifully as they fight against the odds to stay together. Alyssa Milano gives free-spirited energy, a dash of humour and a sense of growing up to Phoebe, who desperately wants to prove she can succeed in life. Milano makes Phoebe such a fun and relatable character who makes mistakes and learns from them. And since she started to practice martial arts last season, she has proven that she can physically fight the enemies that attack after feeling like the sister with the most passive power.
Greg Vaughan as Dan does a credible job as the nice guy who falls for Piper, but his character feels somewhat bland at times. It’s obvious that Piper’s heart belongs with Leo, so why did the writer’s feel the need to introduce Dan? The couple have been through enough obstacles to get to where they are, so why bring in another romantic link? Saying this, you do feel sorry a little for Dan as he is a harmless guy, who realises that the girl he is with love’s someone else. The writer’s flirted with the idea of Piper being with someone else in the form of Dan, but they decided that Leo was the one for her and to be honest it’s a good thing they did because of the emotional connection between Leo and Piper that I always feel so prominently. Dan leaves at the end of the season for a job in another part of the country. The bringing in of Dan’s niece Jenny is a misstep and though Karis Paige Bryant tries her best to make the character a little bit interesting, she has nothing to work with. The writers wisely wrote the character of Jenny out of Charmed as she really didn’t have much of a purpose within the spectrum of the show. Brian Krause continues to flesh Leo out as a character, showing us what he feels like when he has his wings clipped temporarily and he is rendered mortal ( don’t worry he gets his Whitelighter powers back). His relationship with Piper continues to blossom despite all the trouble that is thrown at them and really becomes a moving courtship that will eventually transcend the laws of Witches and Whitelighters not being allowed to love another. Dorian Gregory fills the role of the girl’s inspector friend Darryl with dry humour and eye-rolling disbelief at the situations he finds himself in because of magic. Yet Darryl is also incredibly loyal to the girls and has sworn to keep their secret, hence he often feels protective over them as both a friend and an ally.
And now for my rundown ratings or each individual episode that populates this season:
- Witch Trial – A
- Morality Bites – A+
- The Painted World – B-
- The Devil’s Music – C
- She’s a Man, baby, a Man! – B-
- That Old Black Magic – B
- They’re Everywhere – B-
- P3 H2O – A
- Ms. Hellfire – A+
- Heartbreak City – B-
- Reckless Abandon – B-
- Awakened – A
- Animal Pragmatism – C
- Pardon My Past – B+
- Give Me a Sign – B
- Murphy’s Luck – B
- How to Make a Quilt Out of Americans – D
- Chick Flick – A
- Ex Libris – C-
- Astral Monkey – B+
- Apocalypse, Not – B
- Be Careful What You Witch For – B
With Season 2, magic is all around as Charmed once again delivers the goods and casts a strong and bewitching spell.
I decided it was about time I got back to my TV reviews. This time for all you lovely followers its Charmed, otherwise known as one of my favourite TV shows ever. Yet again this is a supernatural show, I don’t know what it is I’m just drawn to it so much because of the fantasy elements and the presence of magic, plus three strong female characters which is always a plus in my book. Running for a successful eight seasons, here is my review of the debut season which bristles with promising charm, thrills and magic. Be warned people, spoilers will follow in my overview of this debut season.
The three Halliwell sisters; strong-willed Prue(Shannen Doherty), sensitive Piper(Holly Marie Combs) and rebellious Phoebe(Alyssa Milano) have all inherited their Grandmother’s Manor in San Francisco. Prue and Piper first move in, later followed by Phoebe who isn’t on the best terms with Prue. Upon moving into the old Manor in which they grew up, a set of mysterious and unusual events leads Phoebe to the attic of the Manor. In it she finds a Book of Shadows, a bound volume for witchcraft. Curious she reads the first incantation in the book, that speaks of the Power of Three. Prue and Piper are skeptical about Phoebe’s claims that the sisters are in fact powerful witches, known as The Charmed Ones and that they descend from a long powerful line of witches. That is until they discover that they each have inherited a power from the spell Phoebe cast; Prue can move objects with her mind, Piper can freeze time and Phoebe receives premonitions of the future and the past. The book says that they must face a world of demons and evil beings in order to protect innocent people and stop the spread of demonic power on Earth. While trying to adjust to life as witches with incredible power, the sisters must also deal with not getting their powers exposed to the outside world( such as Prue’s inspector boyfriend Andy Trudeau( T. W. King) and his superior Darryl Morris(Dorian Gregory) while taking down the evils that they must rid the world of in order to protect many innocent people. As the season goes on, their powers continue to grow and we watch how the sisters must learn to control them and use them for the greater good, and not for their own personal gain. Throughout Season 1 we follow the Halliwell sisters as they navigate their way through battling demons as The Power of Three, personal lives and a whole load of other things, whilst being bound together as the most powerful witches in the world.
The main focus of this season is Prue’s tragic relationship with Andy, Piper adjusting to her powers and falling for Leo(Brian Krause) a seemingly normal handyman who is actually a magical being called a Whitelighter sent to watch over the sisters and Phoebe’s rebellious attitude to magic which often lands her in supernatural trouble. Humour is provided throughout Charmed in the many attempts that the sisters make to ensure that their Wiccan secret is not exposed to anyone. The romantic entanglements of the girls often brings about unexpected consequences, especially Piper falling in love with Leo, despite the powers that be forbidding such a union. Leo may leave for a while to contemplate the relationship and what his magical superiors will say, but the seed has already been sown for his return and what will become one of the romantic touchstones of the show as we later see in the future the love that they share for one another. Prue’s relationship with Andy also gives this season a certain emotional resonance, especially the outcome of the relationship and its effects. After finally revealing that she is a witch and Andy coming around to the idea, he is tragically killed by a demon, which devastates Prue. Prue gets even by vanquishing the demon in question, but the loss of Andy deeply affects her as he was her true love who she will never forget.
People may say that the show is predictable and goofy at times, but it’s extremely entertaining watching the sisters take down the powers of evil on a daily basis. And I mean just look at some of the demons these girls take down; psychopathic hell bitches, sight stealing Grimlocks and a mystical beast called a Wendigo that temporarily transforms Piper into a beast just like it after attacking her. To say it isn’t a blast seeing them kick evil’s ass is a blatant lie. It’s also great when the sisters delve into their past; literally at one point travelling back to when they were children and realizing why their powerful Grams bound their powers. Plus, there’s an excellent opening credits sequence of explosive action and magical paraphernalia of candles, spells and demons . The most prominent enemies in this first season are Rex and Hannah, two demons masquerading as Prue’s smarmy bosses at an auction house and Rodriguez, a vicious demon who will stop at nothing to kill the sisters and ends up providing Season 1 with a tragic ending as he is the one who kills Andy.
The series is given an emotional undercurrent as we witness that bond that the sisters share and how above it all, they are sisters who happen to be witches rather than the other way around. This is further helped by the chemistry between the three main actresses who really gel together to make this a believable trio. Shannen Doherty successfully exhibits tough strength, hard determination and an inner vulnerability as the eldest sister Prue, who aside from battling literal demons has other personal ones to deal with. The main things are the relationship with Andy and how she tries to hide her secret from him and the wounded memories of her father leaving her when she was younger, plus her sense of loneliness that arises from her mother’s mysterious death. Holly Marie Combs embodies the caring and sensitive personality of the middle sister Piper, who is often mediator between her two other sisters when they are engaged in a disagreement or skirmish. Out of the three, Piper is the one who we are shown to feel sympathy for as she does crave a normal life once again. Although this could have made the character become whiny, because of Holly Marie Combs performance it becomes sympathetic and very human. Rounding out the trio is Alyssa Milano, who provides humour, playfulness and charm as the youngest sister Phoebe. Many of the hi jinks that the sisters find themselves in this season somehow relate to Phoebe as she learns about not abusing magic. Being the youngest, Phoebe’s free-spirited attitude is often a cause for magical concern because of the way she attempts to use it trying to help others, but the result backfiring. Out of the sisters, Phoebe is the one who embraces their destiny the most, even if it puts her at odds with her other sisters.
T. W. King plays Andy very well and provides an outsiders suspicion of the sisters, especially Prue who he deeply cares about but is not sure what to make of her as she keeps popping up in many unexplained cases. I must say that his death really is tragic and is the first major one we see committed by a demon on someone the girls care for. Andy is character whose death really hits the viewer hard as he’s basically a nice guy trying to do his job, who happens to be at the wrong place at the wrong time trying to protect the woman he cares about. Dorian Gregory is wryly humorous and curious as Andy’s partner Darryl Morris, while Brian Krause gives warmth and tender strength to the role of Leo, the girl’s guardian angel for lack of a better word who falls deeply in love with Piper.
And now starting with this review for TV, I will feature a rating for each of the episodes in the season, from A to F.
- Something Wicca This Way Comes – A+
- I’ve Got You Under My Skin – B
- Thank You For Not Morphing – C-
- Dead Man Dating – B+
- Dream Sorcerer – A
- The Wedding from Hell – F
- The Fourth Sister – C-
- The Truth is Out There and It Hurts – B+
- The Witch is Back – A-
- Wicca Envy – A
- Feats of Clay – D
- The Wendigo – A
- From Fear to Eternity – A
- Secrets and Guys – B
- Is There a Woogy in the House? – B+
- Which Prue is It, Anyway? – B-
- That ’70s Episode – A
- When Bad Warlocks Turn Good – B
- Out of Sight – A+
- The Power of Two – C
- Love Hurts – B+
- Déjà Vu All Over Again – A+
Watching the first season of Charmed once again and it bringing so many great memories back to me, I really look forward to what Season 2 has to offer.