The Power of Three really can’t catch a break when it comes to love, can they?
Charmed (2018) Season 1 Episode 7 threw one of the sisters for yet another heartbreaking loop: Maggie’s boyfriend is a demon.
Only a half demon, though. Which leads me to believe the show will be following in its predecessors' footsteps by recreating one of the best storylines OG Charmed ever attempted: The half-demon antagonist whose human side falls in love with a Charmed One.
In the original, that half-demon was Cole, played by powerhouse Julian MacMahon.
After his human side fell for youngest sister Phoebe, the sisters set out to help Cole rid himself of his mother’s demonic blood. Throughout the course of multiple seasons, Cole managed to flip-flop from human to demon and back again, before ultimately ending up on the dark side, as the source of all evil.
He was eventually vanquished by the Power of Three, but it could be debated that Charmed never quite wrote a serialized storyline as successful, complex, or intriguing as that of Cole Turner's struggle for humanity.
In the reboot, the demon in question is Parker. When I first heard Nick Hargrove was bumped to series regular, my analytic sixth sense perked up. Parker being revealed as the “Cole” reboot character would totally add up.
After all, if any of the new sisters draw direct parallels to their original counterparts, it's Maggie.
She’s the youngest, she's bubbly, empathic, a psychology major, and loves being a witch. Add in a half-demon boyfriend, and she’s Phoebe 2.0.
Where the reboot stands to surpass the original, though, is the dynamic between Parker and his father. Charmed OG fans never got to witness Cole's actual relationship with his demon mom. Parker's father is not only present in the new series, but also the big bad villain of the entire first season.
That fundamentally ups the stakes, and by adding more moving parts, there’s potential to witness both an internal and external struggle with Parker. That's something we never got from Cole.
What will triumph? Parker's desire not to disappoint his father or his loyalty and growing affection for Maggie?
If done right (and by that I mean if developed correctly), it serves to potentially be the most intriguing storyline of the season. Can Hargrove emulate the wit and charming nature MacMahon once brought to the role? That remains to be seen, but the story still stands to be quite an exciting one.
The Charmed of 2018 is improving, but the best moments still seem to be those which were first paved by the witches before them.
“Out of Scythe” was not Mel’s episode, as her storyline was all but completely thrown to the wayside. I’m disappointed she won’t be continuing with her thesis on intersectional feminism, but maybe distance from that subject will keep her character a little less one-note.
And again, even with Mel, I can’t help draw connections to the original. Piper was both a bar owner and the middle child. One of her biggest character traits was her desire to define herself as an individual beyond just being a witch.
Now that Mel is bartending, forgoing school, and feeling a little lost herself, she’s rivaling Piper more than ever before.
A fresh storyline that doesn’t seem to stem from the source material is Macy’s mysterious "darkness."
My first theory had her pegged as a half demon, but seeing how that space is already being filled by Parker, I have to assume the show is taking things in a different direction.
What direction that is, I’m not so sure. But it’s definitely piqued my interest, and I hope they don't wait too long to give us some answers.
The B plot surrounding Macy's job was a specifically strong aspect of the episode. The writers once again wove feminist ideals into a character arc without making things overly expositional.
Giving Macy a voice towards changing the course of how STEM operates was a clever move. It was a subtle yet impactful moment watching two women in power discuss how to most efficiently run a program now that they're in charge.
Much like Macy, Prue was always hyper-focused on her job. But as the season progresses, Macy does seem to be the most clear-cut original of the three sisters.
The characters are rounding out nicely, but the story structure is still in need of improvement. We’re reeling through too much information for each episode. I found myself having to pause and rewind certain scenes in order to make sure I caught all the information that was being delivered.
That’s not something you ever want your audience to have to do.
With the character arcs having such a major focus, the plot-driven points needed to simplify. For example, dividing the scythe into three shards gave us too many dots to connect before the hour was up.
Some things could have easily been left on the cutting room floor.
We didn’t need the insects leading the girls to the scythe. A quick reveal of the Shadow Demon appearing in the attic for the shard would have done fine. Plus there were no insects in any of the other scenes with the scythe, so why did they appear at the manor?
The shards probably should have been broken into two for timing purposes, with the satyr possessing the first half, and the girls on the hunt for the second, only to discover it was hiding in their own attic.
Mel magically acquiring a bruise identical to her mother's felt half haphazardly thrown into the narrative and could have been saved for later.
Hungover Harry, as amusing as he was, didn’t need to exist in the story at all.
I can only attribute the overwhelming rush of plot points to the fear Charmed wouldn’t be granted a full season. These episodes were written before it received a green light for 22 episodes. I hope after 11 or 12 we will start to see progress with the tactics of storytelling.
It’s not that the show doesn’t have fascinating topics to play with. It’s quite the opposite. The topics are so intriguing that it seems like a waste to rush through them at full speed.
Allow the audience to indulge in what you have to offer.
I’m still holding my breath for this show, and I still have a good feeling! I hope you’re staying on this ride with me!
- Where is Niko? BRING HER BACK NOW. RIGHT NOW.
- I'm still desperately hoping for a Harry and Macy 'ship to sail.
- I hope Galvin never finds out Macy stood up for his job. It drives the point home much more effectively if it's not used as a plot device to bring them closer.
- I need the show to not trash bartending. It's a reputable job, people. I would know.
- The visual effects when the girls were performing the spell on the Shadow Demon were some of the best used so far. I absolutely loved it.
- Where is Allister hanging out? Is the "Underworld" just a big, empty, office space? And why can't he do anything for himself? Also, if that shapeshifter is Parker's brother, we're going to need a little more information about him.
- I'm going to place bets that Parker's "medicine" is to keep his human half dominant.
- Cheers to the sisters promising to tell each other everything and not hide secrets.
- Also cheers to Lucy giving the go-ahead for Parker and Maggie. We love a mature queen.
- All the sisters looked especially gorgeous this episode.
Your turn, Fanatics! What did you think of the episode?
Were you surprised by the reveal of Parker being half demon? What do you hope to see for the rest of the season? Who are you 'shipping?
Let me know in the comments below, and if you haven't caught up, you can watch the latest episode of Charmed (2018) online, right here at TV Fanatic!
Kat Pettibone is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.