Charmet season 8 is a sensitive topic for fans. Some hate the season with a burning rage that reflects the fireballs of the sisters’ most powerful demons. Some, like myself, love the season. There does not seem to be any real middle ground. While it is certainly a departure from the structure that the show introduced in seasons 5, 6 and 7, there are so many welcome changes in the last season that bring the show back to Earth, closer to what it was originally intended to be. be.
Season 8 begins with Piper (Holly Marie Combs), Phoebe (Alyssa Milano), and Paige (Rose McGowan) picks up the pieces of their lives in the wake of their battle with the sinister Zankou as they forged their deaths to escape their duties as Charmed Ones and keep their secret safe. But can they ever really escape their fate as the world’s most powerful witches? Fortunately, Paige’s new accusation is a mighty witch named Billie (Kaley Cuoco), comes to help with some of the annoying magical disturbances. Clearly, the sisters cutting back on the magic of their lives did not last as they regained their identities in just five episodes with the help of Homeland Security. However, the lively changes did not end there.
Charmet season 8 is a return to more than just the sisterhood. It’s a return to the real world, as the show had become a bit amazing in seasons 6 and 7, focusing too much on other magical creatures, such as the elders and avatars, and magical environments, such as Magic School and Underworld.
It is also a return to the fact that the sisters are actually living their lives and experiencing personal growth. The sisters’ lives became pretty stagnant until last season. Paige and Phoebe could never find a relationship that lasted, so it was pretty hard to get attached or take care of the stories that revolved around their love life. Phoebe also becomes quite early obsessed with having a baby, but despite her attention constantly falling on it, nothing ever comes of it. In the final season, Phoebe remains unfortunate in love, but is actually considering starting a family before she finds love. It is a very small sign of progress, and a much needed step forward in her life. As for Paige, she meets Henry (Ivan Sergei), fall in love, get married and have her happily created by the end of their days. Sure, it’s a little hasty, but it’s her life that is moving forward after years of virtually nothing.
As for Piper, losing Leo (Brian Krause) temporarily last season actually did wonders for the story. It was a big shock for the show to lose Leo when the Angel of Destiny hid him away until after the fight with Ultimate Power. Piper’s story all too often focused on Leo and regularly separated her from her sisters. Without Leo, the show actually had to reintegrate Piper into the stories of the other characters, giving her time to connect with Billie and establish some sort of relationship before the upcoming fight. Piper also became more aware of Phoebe and Paige, leaning into the Power of Three and counting more than ever that her sisters would help bring Leo back.
The loss of Leo was probably the greatest example of how the stories were re-focused during Charmet season 8. The stories became more grounded and had more influence on the sisters and / or Billie. It no longer felt as if the authors were looking for a way to explore the many sides of magic. The girls were not often transformed into various magical creatures for no reason at all, and the episodes were not completely overtaken by the demon attacking. The sisters actually had stories that alienated their lives, and the demons were not quite as important. The series was allowed to tell more detailed stories such as Paige considering whether to resume her career as a social worker as she struggled to see what was next for her and Phoebe decided to move out of the mansion to get her own apartment across town.
As the series continued, the introduced demons became less and less interesting. Charmet tried to go outside the box, which really did not work (most of the time). The demons explored last season felt reminiscent of those the sisters had struggled with in earlier times. Or in one case, it was actually a demon that the sisters had once faced: the source of all evil. The demons were more grounded and allowed the sisters to show how much they had grown as individual witches over the last eight years (or five, in Paige’s case). They weren’t always the biggest threats, which wasn’t necessarily a bad thing because the show didn’t always have to rely on Power of Three. This change felt deserved and was a refreshing change of pace. Plus, the fact that Billie in the mix and Leo were gone created the opportunity to explore different matings between the women to focus on the week’s demons.
Perhaps the most controversial character on Charmet, Billie plays a major role in the series’ final season. She was originally used to learn from the sisters and explore her witchcraft, but a decades-long plan from the Triad uses Billie’s long-lost sister Christy (Marnette Patterson) to manipulate her and turn her against the sisters, and put “Ultimate Power” against the Charmed Ones.
Billie played a big role in giving the show new life. Her individual relationship with the sisters quickly became the highlights of the season. Phoebe and Billie had a very nurturing, honest relationship, and it was amazing to see such beautiful chemistry from Milan and Cuoco in depicting this relationship. It felt like Phoebe had another sister, and so did Billie (who desperately needed a … well one). Paige was tougher on Billie when she had to keep Billie in line so she would not die, but she was also her guide. Paige was in charge of Billie’s witchcraft when it came to the play. Given that Paige became a full-time Whitelighter in the series finale, it’s clear how vital Billie was to her story.
Even with Billie and Piper, the fact that they never got close was quite entertaining and a necessity in the final episodes of the show. Piper was the one who was willing to do whatever it took to stop Billie, without being held back by any emotion that her sisters were. Their teasing was funny, they showed exactly who Piper was as a witch and woman, and their dynamics were familiar to Prue and Phoebe when the series began, or Piper and Paige after her introduction to the family. Another wonderful recall, of sorts.
Although Billie’s choices can be quite annoying, such as how easily she turns on the sisters, she brought a refreshing element back to Charmet. One of the best aspects of the early season was watching the girls use their magic, make mistakes and learn how to clean up that mess. When it became more stressful to be a witch – rightly so, especially after the death of their sister Prue (Shannen Doherty) – the sisters’ love of being witches eventually disappeared and it took most of the fun out of the show.
Billie’s personality is very reminiscent of Phoebes back in season 1, post-New York City, or Paige in season 4, when she was first introduced to the craft. They are more light-hearted when it comes to magic, and it’s actually fun for them to kick demons on a daily basis. Phoebe and Paige did not see the seriousness of witchcraft, which Piper and Prue immediately recognized and embraced, and neither did Billie.
Although Christy turned out to be a dull character, mostly because she was brainwashed by the Triad and never got the chance to recognize this and learn from her mistakes, Billie’s relationship with her was touching (in the beginning). It was nice after so many years to see another set of sisters and their deep relationship and how much magic can disturb something so special. In the end, it proved that the sisterhood between Charmed Ones was something remarkable that no one else could replicate, as that sister element is why the Triad tried to use Billie and Christy against Piper, Paige and Phoebe.
While, of course, there are flaws Charmet season 8, the negativity is too much. The season is without a doubt the best of the series as it leaned into so many amazing aspects of the previous seasons and used them as a springboard to become something better, stronger and more comfortable than before. The changes should have come sooner (and so should Billie).
Every season of Charmet currently streaming on Peacock.
Keep reading: How the original ‘Charmed’ has one of TV’s most surprisingly gripping depictions of grief
Jeymes Samuel’s Netflix movie has style to spare, but fails to invest any depth in its characters or story.
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