Charmed recap: Be wary of manic pixie dream girls
The Charmed Ones are taking a break from evil demons, a looming apocalypse, and escapees from Tartarus because there’s a pixie on the loose in Hilltowne. Poking fun at exhausting character cliches — from an actual manic pixie dream girl to nightmare film bros — “Manic Pixie Nightmare” is a mostly fun break from Charmed’s usual heavy dose of twists and surprise revelations. Cue Sixpence None the Richer because this episode is full of whimsy, with a healthy dose of murder.
Of course, “Kiss Me” is playing during the opening scene, as film student Judd livestreams his rooftop picnic date with the very glittered and giggly Chloe, gushing about their brief, whimsical love affair. However, Chloe isn’t just a walking manic pixie dream girl trope, she’s an actual pixie. After a rousing speech, during which she tells Judd he can do anything — including fly — the pair make a run for the ledge, where the turtleneck-wearing film student falls to his death as Chloe takes off in a puff of gold glitter.
Since The Charmed Ones have pretty much established themselves as Hilltowne’s resident supernatural PI team, Parker brings word of Judd’s death — and its suspicious circumstances — for them to investigate. Maggie thinks he’s just looking for an excuse to see her but the ever-present Harry, who is once-again living with the sisters following his stay in Tartarus, disagrees, putting Team Charmed Ones officially on the case.
At the lab, Macy is working with Julia on a prototype serum for Parker using mouse cells. Macy’s discouraged as her own journey towards a cure is a little more complicated: she has demon blood, she has no demonic cells. However, ever the loyal boyfriend, Galvin is there to support her in any way she needs.
Meanwhile, Mel and Jada’s relatively new relationship is already reaching the toothbrush stage, despite the relationship itself being largely under wraps. Mel gets the alert to head to The Haunt to sleuth around Judd’s memorial but that doesn’t stop her from a paltry attempt to find out the true identity of the Sarcana sister rescued from Tartarus. Guys, it’s Fiona — Charity’s supposedly dead sister and Harry’s greatest professional regret — but I’m sure we’ll find out officially soon enough.
Wondering where Mel’s been, Maggie uses her empath powers and learns Mel’s been sleeping with Jada. She and Macy are (rightfully) worried Mel’s new relationship is clouding her investigative judgment. But little do they know Mel’s a terrible undercover agent and spilled the beans to Jada long ago. For some reason, Harry decides it’s best for him to roll up “incognito,” trading in his usual boarding school dean look for jeans, a black tee, glasses, and a leather jacket. More casual Fridays for Harry!
The quartet enter The Haunt to find the memorial overrun with nauseating film bros, eulogizing their fallen comrade with tales of faux-wokeness. While Harry initially suspects a goblin of sorts could be behind Judd’s death, encouraging the sisters to be on the lookout for someone wearing a hat, he’s quickly proven wrong, having wildly underestimated film guys and their love of hats.
Parker, who was in a film class with Judd, is also on hand to introduce the sisters to all the relevant players, including Noah, who has screenshots from the livestream of a mysterious glittery ball flying away from the scene of Judd’s death. Having found out about her own demon blood, Macy is now feeling very forgiving towards Parker’s many previous indiscretions but Maggie has no energy for that, not after all the deceit and lies — which is very fair.
As Noah retrieves his cell phone from his car to show the sisters the photos, he encounters Chloe — who he assumes to have died with Judd — in the parking lot. Falling under her spell, he quickly forgets his mission and goes off to jump in puddles with Chloe in the street and is promptly hit by a car, falling into a coma.
After their night surrounded by nauseating film bros, the team comes to the conclusion that Chloe is the key to Judd and Noah’s mysterious accidents, concluding she’s a pixie. Remarking that pixies are usually harmless, Harry, who is clearly charmed by the magical creatures, breaks out a big book of pixies. However, Harry’s explanation of the magical creatures — who are, unsurprisingly, all over Etsy and Pinterest — goes completely off the rails due to an open vial of Chloe’s pixie dust on the table. Macy quickly closes the lid on the vial and Harry returns to his normal state, adding that witches and demons are immune to the magic…but not whitelighters. Welp, now we know the true cause of Tom Cruise’s infamous couch jump on Oprah.
Team Charmed Ones may be focused on the pixie nightmare in Hilltowne but Galvin has figured out how to help Macy. He thinks a story his late grandmother used to tell him as a kid might actually be able to help them and he wants to try to communicate with her through Mama Roz.
Meanwhile, Maggie has narrowed down the list of targets to the white guys in Parker’s film class. While he thinks he’s immune as a half-demon, Maggie warns him anyway. She and Mel go to campus to distribute an immunity potion Harry whipped up to other potential targets. However, his mother’s serum appears to be working as Parker has a meet-cute with Chloe — which includes a puppy with a pretentious writer name and everything — and falls under her spell. Mel gets an urgent text from Jada and takes off as Maggie finds Parker skipping down the street. He tells her about his mom’s experimental treatment — something Macy definitely should have disclosed — and Maggie is able to save him from an oncoming bus and break the spell using her empath powers.
Mel rushes off to find Jada, who reveals that her parents (who don’t know she’s a witch and think she’s in a cult) want to see her. Jada reveals she was adopted and when her powers revealed themselves to her, she began to act out and eventually ran away before being saved by the Sarcana. Jada then asks a visibly freaked out Mel if she wants to meet her parents.
Galvin and Macy go see Mama Roz to learn more about the Chiriji, who performs a ritual to rid a person of the ibi. However, she doesn’t know how to perform it, explaining very few people know how to do so. As Galvin’s grandmother was one of the few, Mama Roz calls upon her spirit but when the spirit discovers the presence of Macy in the room, she takes Galvin inside his mind — away from Macy and the ibi. There, Galvin is able to explain to his grandmother that he’s trying to help her and asks how he can learn how to perform the ritual. She reveals the Chiriji will devise a series of tests before entrusting him with the knowledge, adding that if he fails it will cost him his life.
Perusing the big book of pixies, Mel stumbles across the most adorable pixie trap — which, no joke, includes a spell solely comprised of giggles — which Chloe easily falls into. Chloe maintains she’s a good pixie, remarking that she’s just following orders from the person who has her heart. However, Harry, who for whatever reason didn’t take his own immunity potion, falls under her spell once more and steals the Book of Shadows before disappearing with the pixie.
However, it turns out she’s not exaggerating as woodland pixies have external hearts shaped like acorns. Film bro Zack, who the sisters previously equipped with the immunity potion, is literally in possession of her heart…which he is wearing around his neck. He reveals he wants to be the greatest filmmaker alive and under the spell, Harry retrieves a wish-fulfillment spell and practically offers to be the sacrifice.
The sisters call Parker for dirt on Zack and he shows up to help. While Maggie does not want him to “swoop in” and help, his shadow demon powers prove useful and Maggie relents. Together, the four of them are able to retrieve Harry and the Book of Shadows, steal back Chloe’s heart, and neutralize the evil film bro.
With the sisters now in possession of her heart, Chloe spills the beans on Zack’s plans and how he found her. She reveals he wanted to get into the advanced film seminar but was convinced only one white guy would get in and thanks to his monumental entitlement, decided to eliminate the competition — well, have Chloe do it for him.
Upon receiving her heart again, Chloe is overcome with guilt and the sisters convince her to find other pixies and team up to protect their hearts….and their agency. Mel uses a Sarcana hex to convince Zack to take responsibility for the death of Judd and attempted murder of Noah. While they go along with it, Maggie and Macy are very wary of the spell and Jada and the Sarcana’s influence on Mel.
The next day, Maggie sees Parker on campus with the last remnants of Chloe left in Hilltowne: the puppy, which Parker is keeping because spell or not, he’s always wanted a puppy. Maggie is overcome by how sweet — and human — the whole situation is and kisses him. And then the puppy kisses both of them. (I’m already petitioning The CW to make Eggers the dog a regular for season 2.)
Welp, it seems “I don’t hate you but we can’t be together” didn’t last long because Mags and Parker are back on. Later, when Macy asks her if she’s scared to be with Parker, with his demon side, Maggie admits that while she is scared, love itself is pretty scary, ya know? This little pep talk is all Macy needs to give Galbin the okay to go on his journey with the Chiriji, despite being scared. Galvin admits that he’s scared, too, but he wants to try because he loves her. His steadfast support and declaration of love prompts Macy to lead him up to her bedroom and finally lose her virginity.
Despite her earlier reluctance, Mel accompanies Jada to see her parents but it seems the whole situation is a ruse as a black van pulls up and someone shoots Jada in the shoulder with a crossbow.