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Charmed is a television series which ran between 1997 and 2005 in the UK. It is predominantly about the relationships between 3 sisters who happen to be witches, and spend their time fighting the eternal battle between good and evil.
The sisters are Piper Halliwell (Holly Marie Combs), Phoebe Halliwell (Alyssa Milano) and Paige Mathews (Rose McGowan.
This series for me was in some ways not as good as the previous few series. Introducing children into the family dynamics when Piper gave birth in series 5 did have an effect on the relationship between the girls. Piper is also left in the family home, the Manor, alone, as both her sisters move out to live with their partners.
The series started off with a huge change for the girls. Leo, Piper's husband and Whitelighter, was made into an Elder, so now he can no longer live with and look after the girls. At the start of the series, Piper is completely devastated at the breakdown of her family unit, leaving her a single mother.
They also have to deal with the fact that their new whitelighter, newcomer Chris Perry (Drew Fuller) is a very secretive person. He has come from the future and all he will tell them is that he is here to protect baby Wyatt from turning into an evil person in the future. Hints are dropped throughout the whole series as to his true identity, but it is not till near the end of the series the sisters understand Chris's relevance to their future.
Phoebe spends part of this series living in Japan with her boss and partner, Jason Dean. Her powers progress in this series. She develops the ability of empathy (being able to feel what other people are feeling) and it is a big struggle to control this power. She struggles in many of the earlier episodes annoying her sisters when she can read their feelings. Her powers of premonition and levitation are still strong, but the combination of all 3 powers leads to her cutting corners and getting into trouble when she almost gets their magical ability revealed. It also has a negative effect on the relationship they have with the policeman, Inspector Morris.
Paige has to take on the main responsibilities for being a witch on behalf of the sisters in this series again. Piper is pregnant again, and as this co-incided with a real life pregnancy for the actress Holly Marie Combs, there was certainly less demon catching on her part, unlike her first pregnancy.
I did enjoy this series still, but some episodes did start to feel a bit samey to series 5 with the 2 pregnancies so close together. Chris was constantly on a quest to destroy the evil, while the sisters were more interested in dealing with the emotional problems in their own lives, and it just felt less fun.
There were some nice additions to this series. Baby Wyatt is very cute, and it was nice to see how his powers developed. There were interesting episodes such as him bringing to life something he saw on the television, and a lot of intrigue as so many demons wanted to hurt him.
It also opened the door for a new setting, when Magical School suddenly appeared to the girls just when Piper was needing child care for her magical baby. This allowed the introduction of more minor and major characters, such as the students, teachers and the headmaster Gideon.
I enjoyed seeing Chris in the future, and I also enjoyed an episode where the girls were in a trial situation to save their friend from death row, as there were many flashbacks to events that had happened in previous seasons.
I also found some of the episodes quite witty, such as when the family end up unwittingly being part of a TV reality show called Witch wars. The earlier part of the 2000s did see an explosion of this genre of television in mainstream viewing, so it was amusing to see that the world of evil were following the trend.
As a whole series, the only thing keeping this going was the strength of the family relationships and the viewer loyalty by this stage. I found this was weaker than series 2-5, and it was only my previous experience of the show keeping me going with this one. Some of the plotlines were starting to get a bit like grabbing at any old straw, such as 'Sword in the City ' which featured a lady in the lake who looked after the sword Excalibur, or 'I dream of Phoebe' featuring Phoebe being made into a Genie in a bottle. It started quite strong, and it ended quite strong, but the middle bit was hit and miss for me. I did continue watching for the whole of the series as I am that sort of person and I wanted to know what happened right to the end, but the show really did decline as a whole after series 5, and perhaps should have ended there.
In the words of series creater Constance M Burge "CHARMED was about three sisters - who also happen to be witches".
This is the season that I began to lose interest in CHARMED. The biggest let down for me was the way the sisters' lost their original identities: Piper morthed into Prue, Phoebe stepped into Piper's shoes, leaving Paige to become a Phoebe clone.
Maybe it's because I'm an eldest child myself, but younger sisters' Phoebe and Paige suddenly became very irritating; their 'cuteness' and attempts at wit [Phoebe in particular] and impulsiveness would often make me want to resort to violance...
Meanwhile poor old Piper drew the short straw; The character suddenly became bitter and sometimes comes of as rather clinical and cold. This is the writers idea of a responsible new Mum?! [Holly Marie Combs most have pissed off the producers...]
Also CHARMED suddenly tried to be more adult and sexy. That's not the problem, it's the abrupt way it changed; It's all quite disjointed; It was if there had been two seperate shows and they're just mashed together.
Overall I still enjoyed the series for the most part, but season 6 marked the downward slope. Charmed seemed to run out of supernatural plot ideas, so the witers started injecting soap-opera plotlines - it was simply too distracting; if you missed one episode you found yourself out of the loop, and once that happened I just couldn't be bothered to catch up.
Valhalley of the Dolls (1)
Valhalley Of The Dolls (2)
The sistrers travel to Valhalla to search for Leo, unaware that it was Chris who sent him there. Phoebe discovers her new power.
Wyatt accidentally brings a dragon to life, while Phoebe struggles with her new power.
The Power Of Three Blondes
Three evil witches steal the sisters' identities fooling everyone in their lives. Leo continues to search for the person who sent him to Valhalla.
Love's A Witch
Paige becomes caught in the middle of a feud between 2 families of witches. She is attracted to one of the family members, but the ghost of his lover has other ideas.
My Three Witches
Chris decides to each the girls a lesson by sending them to an alternate reality where their secret desires come true.
Paige makes a deal with a demon, to save her boss's soul.
Sword And The City
The sisters are called on to protect Excalibur. All manor of magical entities descend on the manor to try to pull the sword from the stone.
The sisters become foster parents to a half-demon infant, which Chris urges them to destroy.
A mysterious woman from the future strips Chris of his powers, while Paige's and Phoebes romances become more serious.
Paige is transported back in time to the era of free love and free magic.
Phoebe and Paige conjure up Mr Right as a birthday present for a depressed Piper. Chris convinces the sisters to bind Wyatt's powers.
Phoebe's boyfriend dumps her after he learns the sisters' secret. Paige's boyfriend tries to pull himself from his family's karma.
The Legend Of Sleepy Halliwell
A headless horseman is on the loose beheading the teachers of the magic school.
I Dream Of Phoebe
After freeing a genie, Phoebe must take its place.
The Courtship Of Wyatt's Father
Chris begins to disappear and reveals what must be done to save him from being vanquished forever.
Hyde School Reunion
Phoebe accidentally casts a spell which causes her wild teenage personality to take her over.
Piper is kidnapped by a spider demon and Chris is infected with his venom.
Crimes And Witch-Demeanors
Phoebe and Paige are taped using their powers, so the mystical cleaners cover up the situation, causing Darryl to become a murder suspect.
A Wrong Days Journey Into Right
Piper's away at magic school and Phoebe's without her active powers leaving an overworked Paige to conjure Mr Right for some fun. However, she also releases his twin Mr Wrong...
The demon Gideon creates 'Witch Wars', a reality show where demons compete to kill the Charmed Ones!
It's A Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World (1)
It's A Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World (2)
Gideon transports Leo and Chris to a parallel world where evil reigns supreme, so Phoebe and Paige travel there to save them, leaving Piper on her own in this world.
Holly Marie Combs ... Piper Halliwell
Alyssa Milano ... Phoebe Halliwell
Rose McGowan ... Paige Matthews
Brian Krause ... Leo Wyatt
Dorian Gregory ... Darryl Morris
Studio: Paramount Home Entertainment
Run Time: 917 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
DVD Extras: None
After 5 great seasons, the Charmed one's returned to our screens with yet another smashing season. This long-running show follows the lives of three sisters, Piper (Holly Marie Combs), Phoebe (Alyssa Milano) and Paige (Rose McGowan), that hold the greatest power in history - the power of three. Aaron Spelling's creation returned with a two-part episode, "Valhalley of the Dolls". At the end of season 5, we saw a mysterious white-lighter from the future names Chris (Drew Fuller) scatter Leo's (Brian Krause) [Piper's elder husband] orbs.
The season begins with us seeing that Piper has become eccentrically cheerful, and so in an attempt to cure her, Paige casts a spell which backfires, causing Piper to suffer from a serious case of amnesia. The girls must try and save both Piper and find out what happened to Leo. We get slight comedy and I think that we really see the talent of the costume designers in these episodes!
This season has exciting plots, especially when Wyatt conjures a dragon that terrorizes the city. The 'cleaners' (Magical beings who's duty is to minimize the risk of exposure) then intervene and Wyatt is taken away from them and their memory of him erased. Will the girls be able to save Wyatt, Piper and Leo's son?
Also, in the episode "The power of the three blondes", the charmed one's are victims of identity theft, but of the magical kind. They must try and convince Chris that they are the charmed one's and that their identities have been stolen from three trashy blonde sisters. Can they save their destiny and their book from the clutches of evil?
Paige develops a relationship with a member of the Montana family, an old magical family.
The three are transported into alternate realities, which i thought made a great episode.
We also visit the past in this season when Paige is transported back to the 60's and she learns more about her grandmother.
Personally, one of my favourite episodes (not only in this season, but from them all) is "The Legend of Sleepy Halliwell" where a Headless horseman is on the loose, decapitating the teachers of 'Magic School'. I found the special effects of a good standard, and it makes me laugh every time!
There is, as always, comedy in this season. This is evident in the episode "I dream of Phoebe" when Phoebe is turned into a genie.
The season comes to yet another gripping closure in the two-part episode "It's a bad, bad, bad world" where Leo accompanies Chris back to the future! I was totally gripped and couldn't wait for the second part!!! I thought it had, as always, a really good ending!
A fantastic season, and I was completely gripped all the way through! I would recommend it to any charmed fan, it's definitely worth the money!
*Does contain spoilers*
Charmed was a long running supernatural drama show that aired from 1998 - 2006 and spanned 8 seasons. Based around the lives of the three Halliwell sisters Phoebe, Paige and Piper [played by Alyssa Milano, Rose McGowan and Holly Marie Combs respectively, who just happened to be the most powerful force of good magic the world had ever known. The show followed the characters' daily struggles against the supernatural but also had a faint trace of 'Sex *& The City' burried beneath it as the sisters wrestled with their personal, romantic and professional lives also.
By the time it had reached its sixth season the show was beginning to unwind. In my opinion the villains and some of the episodes were quite nonsensical but it works not only to the actors advantage but the show as well. 'Charmed' doesn't try to be up there with the likes of Buffy or The X Files. It knows its role and it delivers the goods in every episode of this vibrant and exciting season.
- The Characters -
This year sees Phoebe continue her never ending quest to balance love and her career alongside her wiccan duties. Her relationship with Jason falls apart after he discovers she's a witch. Alyssa Milano has great comedic timing and provides some of the most funniest moments in the series particulary in the episode 'I Dream Of Phoebe' where she is forced to switch places with a demon posing as a genie.
Paige's fledging relationship with Richard Montanna also comes under strain when he appears to rely to heavily on magic. This season also seems to try and find something to further the character as Paige in the past has just been a sort of background element to the difficult and tangled story arcs constructed by her sisters. Cue the painfully boring recruitment agency storyline in which Paige has a variety of different jobs that all have some sort of magical problem attached to them. Rose McGowan is brilliant , always shining with enthusiasm and wit but the character itself is rather lifeless and seems to be stuck in a rut.
Piper meanwhile separates from Leo this season after the cracking two part opener 'Vahalley Of The Dolls'. Piper going off the edge is always great to see as Holly Marie Combs provides the best trragic peformance out of any of the four main characters. She also discovers that is she pregnant with her second child who shockingly is the sister's new whitelighter Chris [played by Drew Fuller] who has come back from the future to protect his younger brother from turning evil.
The storylines are a lot more developed this year than others with a more structured layout than the various standalone episodes seen previously. It's evident of how bonded the cast are and how they have a great time making the show just as much as we enjoy watching it.
- Key Episodes -
Personal favourites for me include the aforementioned two part opener. 'The Power Of Three Blondes' which is made brilliant by the stereotypical, shallow, stupid blonde sisters that steal the girl's identities. 'I Dream Of Phoebe', 'The Legend Of Sleepy Halliwell', 'I Dream Of Phoebe', 'Spin City' and 'Crime & Witch Demeanors' are also highlights.
The two part season finale 'It's A Bad Bad World' is probably second to only the tragic season three conclusion in which Prue dies. The show finishes what is a veyr light hearted season in places with a dark and gripping two parter as Leo discovers his mentor Gideon is the one responsible for kidnapping Wyatt. Billy Drago is fantasic as always in the role of the twisted demon of fear Barbas.
- Conclusion -
Many people criticise Charmed far too much but the episodes here whilst not brilliant are definately worth while purchasing to complete your collection. There's the perfect balance of romance, humour, tragedy and drama and the show makes up for its terrible 5th season with deeper explorations of its main characters and just strong, solid story arcs which really give the show a lasting presence.
Casual fans may be disappointed by the lack of special features available though. As with all seasons [minus the eighth], there are only the 22 episodes from the season contained here. The packaging is extremely colourful decked out in a vibrant red. Probably doesn't mean much to most people but for us OCD colour freaks its definately a satisfaction.
All in all this is certainly one of the stronger seasons of Charmed and is a clear indication of why this show gained such a huge following and lasted as long as it did.
The sixth series of Charmed questions the future of the Power of Three and their offspring. For once the main three female leads almost take a back seat as the future of the supernatural world is examined in the form of Piper's son, Wyatt, and the visitor from the future, Chris, whom we know to be Piper's second son but they don't know this.
Charmed is a US TV drama series created by Aaron Spelling. It ran for 8 seasons. The first three of these saw sisters Pru, Piper and Phoebe Halliwell as three witches combatting the evil of the supernatural world to protect the world in general. The third season saw the demise of Pru and the emergence of Paige Matthews, their half sister. Holly Marie Combs, Alyssa Milano and Rose McGowan play Piper. Phoebe and PAige, and they are joined by Brian Krause as Leo and Dorian Gregory as Darrell, the policeman who know their secret and protects them wherever possible. Leo is their whitelighter (guardian angel) and also husband to Piper, father to Wyatt.
This sixth season takes the back plot one step further. Charmed is hard to watch because there is an ongoing saga throughout the seasons. Many series let you watch random episodes, but Charmed is not one of these as it relies heavily on its recurring plotlines for its appeal.
I enjoyed this season of Charmed as we were kept informed of details throughout that the sisters were not, and I found myself anxious from one episode to the next. The key thing here is that I was kept interested all the way through the series, and I found this season one of the best. The past couple of series were interesting but paled into insignificance in comparison.
One of the better appeals of Charmed is its ability to combine comedy and tragedy with great action and intense plot lines. The special effects have been dodgy for the past couple of seasons, but I felt they stepped it up a notch here and did a better job. Overall, I recommend getting this, as well as the other seasons, and you will most likely need to watch from season 1 to fully grasp everything that goes on. The DVD retails at around the £45 mark, although most retailers are likely to have a decent discount, and amazon.co.uk have second hand copies for around £15.