The Harbinger of Hell may be hurtling Charmed towards the apocalypse, but the series’ latest episode digs deeper into the season’s other looming mystery. Throughout the first handful of episodes, Marisol’s mysterious abandonment of Macy has been somewhat coyly teased, but “Kappa Spirit” hints at the mysterious dark circumstances that led to that devastating event. However, as the title suggests, this week isn’t just about maternal mysteries as Maggie and Mel find themselves facing off against a vengeful sorority ghost.
We open to find that all is not well in the Vera-Vaughn household. Mel is still mourning her time-warped breakup with Niko, Macy’s research for Galvin’s mysterious hip symbol has hit a dead end, and Maggie is grieving her Kappa-less future. Considering Mel’s feeling the worst at the moment, the sisters and Harry — who is still living with them under Elders’ orders (sure, Jan) — take Mel to the local hotspot, The Haunt, for a night out. Maggie, lamenting the upcoming Kappa initiation she’ll no longer be a part of, attempts to reconcile with Lucy and potentially save her place in the sorority by making a peace offering of skinny margaritas. But Lucy wants nothing to do with her and attempts to dump the pitcher on her head (her hair is saved thanks to Macy and Mel’s magical interventions). Lucy is still stinging from Maggie’s betrayal, but the stunt at the bar has her fellow Kappa sisters shocked at her behavior. Heeding the advice of her sisters, Lucy decides to channel her inner Gwyneth Paltrow and restore her zen. However, when she lights a candle and sets out to find her inner GP, she accidentally releases a spirit into the house.
In the lab, Macy is told that she needs to submit a blood sample as Morningstar Biotech, the lab’s new donor, is insisting on mandatory employee drug tests. She more or less brushes this new protocol off but as we know, Morningstar Biotech’s CEO, Allister Caine, is actually one very bad demon, and this will definitely come back to bite her in the end. However, Macy is more focused on Galvin and the glowing symbol on his hip that is only getting brighter. She overhears him talking about a party and she jokingly invites herself. Galvin initially attempts to shut her down, but ultimately goes in for the very painful “…but you can come if you want.” Macy sees the awkward invitation and raises Galvin with a cringe-worthy offer to bake something. The whole encounter is as painful as it sounds.
Maggie is not done trying to return to Lucy’s good graces and goes to the Kappa house to, once more, apologize to the sorority president. But Maggie finds Lucy joined by new VIP sister Brenda — who has a penchant for ‘80s wear and whispering in Lucy’s ear — and the pair promptly sends Maggie away. But as Maggie had to do some serious homework on her sisters as a pledge, she knows there’s something off about Brenda, and one internet deep dive later reveals that Brenda is actually the ghost of a Kappa sister who died in the ‘80s.
During an official Team Charmed Ones meeting, Harry concedes that they may, in fact, have a ghost on their hands, and it may very well be up to no good. However, Galvin’s glowing accessory is also of great concern so they decide to divide and conquer with Maggie and Mel taking on ghostbusting duties while a reluctant Macy and Harry go off to Galvin’s party with a mean Welsh rarebit in tow.
Maggie and Mel take to the Book of Shadows in an attempt to figure out what kind of ghost Brenda may be, performing a Pensieve-like spell that transports them back to Hilltowne of the ‘80s, where they see Brenda being brutally kicked out of Kappa. After witnessing the spectacle, the sisters see their mom, who is very pregnant with Macy, sitting on a nearby bench, looking worried. She confides in her friend that she’s worried there may be something wrong with her baby — she can sense it. However, before Maggie and Mel are able to learn anything else, they’re sucked out of the memory and are left wondering what their mother thought might be wrong with Macy.
Macy and Harry — who is wearing a truly dreadful Gryffindor striped tie — arrive at the party and immediately run into Galvin and his perfect, non-demon girlfriend, Summer. But it turns out Summer loves Welsh rarebit and the whole situation is not nearly as bad as it could have been. However, things do get extremely awkward when Macy attempts to show Harry the glowing symbol — which he, like Maggie in the previous episode, cannot see — and Summer spots what she thinks is Macy checking out her boyfriend.
Later, Macy is looking at a collection of framed photos and spots a necklace resembling the symbol in one of the photos. Galvin approaches and reveals the woman in the photo is his grandmother. He then tells her a little bit about his Haitian and Dominican roots, including some family lore involving pirates, before being interrupted and sent off on some menial task by Summer who is clearly looking to corner Macy. She doesn’t mince words, telling Macy to stay away from Galvin. Macy takes this new piece of advice as her and Harry’s cue to leave.
In the attic, Macy and Harry are researching the symbol with the new information about Galvin’s history and it seems the glowing symbol is a Yoruba protection spell. They decide to visit a local priestess to learn more about it and why Macy is the only one who can see it. Macy also takes a second to lament her relationship with Galvin, which crashed and burned before it even took off. The two then have a heart to heart — which involves a mutual declaration of friendship — and Harry, as expected, tells her that the Elders actually gave him the go-ahead to move out of the Vera-Vaughn days ago. He’s chosen to stay because his Whitelighter life is lonely and he’s enjoying the little makeshift family thing they have going
Meanwhile, Mel and Maggie break into the Kappa house, where they find a group of Kappa sisters bound and gagged in a closet. Maggie and Mel deduce that Lucy is the only one under Brenda’s spell and having witnessed the memory earlier, believe Brenda may be using Lucy to exact her revenge on Jenna, the sister who publicly kicked her out of Kappa decades earlier. Maggie and Mel track down the now-adult Jenna and, posing as BuzzFeed reporters, inquire about Kappa deaths, expecting a rehash of what they already know. However, Jenna surprises them by revealing the truth behind Brenda’s expulsion from Kappa and a number of other mysterious deaths after Brenda’s in a similar manner: falling off the roof while drunk on wine coolers. Armed with their new information, Mel and Maggie realize that Brenda isn’t the banshee they thought she was; rather, she’s a revenant and her next victim is Lucy.
They summon Harry for backup, leaving Macy to have a revealing and also deeply unsettling conversation with the priestess. She confirms the mark is, in fact, a Yoruba protection spell and upon learning Macy is the only one who can see it, the priestess advises Macy to keep her distance from Galvin. She reveals Macy has the ibi in her but is reluctant to explain further until Macy throws down a wad of cash. The priestess tells Macy it means she has a darkness in her, one that’s been there since she was born. Macy is indignant at the priestess’s explanation and practically writes her off as a fraud. But as she prepares to leave, the priestess remarks that she’s different from her sisters, ominously adding, “The pillar of your path holds the key to your darkness.”
Meanwhile, Maggie, Mel, and Harry attempt to save Lucy, who is drunk on wine coolers on the Kappa house roof. Unfortunately, the spell from the Book of Shadows isn’t working and Brenda is able to get Lucy to jump — but Mel and Harry are able to save her in the nick of time. Maggie, having realized that her approach to getting Lucy to forgive her was all wrong, is able to vanquish the ghost by expressing true remorse for her wrongdoing. When Lucy later awakens from her wine cooler/ghost spell haze, Maggie apologizes once more for not giving Lucy the space she needed, adding that she hopes they can be friends one day.
Mel also apologizes to Maggie for belittling Kappa’s importance to her, admitting that she also needs to rebuild her own non-witch life. The duo meet Macy at The Haunt and prepare to tell her what they learned in the memory but are dissuaded when Macy shares what the priestess told her. While Maggie may not be joining Kappa, Mel formally inducting her into the Vera-Vaughn sisterhood — although I still prefer Team Charmed Ones. Their ceremony is interrupted by Harry, who has finally decided to move out on his own accord. But before he returns to his Whitelighter bachelor condo, the sisters make him an honorary member of the sisterhood.
Remember Macy’s drug test blood sample? Evil Allister Caine is already looking to use it for ominous purposes, sending his shapeshifting demon son to steal it from the lab, killing a lab employee in the process. Hopefully, the new Hilltowne detectives will begin investigating soon because these bodies are starting to pile up. Meanwhile, back at the house, Macy can’t stop thinking about what the priestess told her. While looking at a baby photo of Marisol and her outside the house, she realizes that when talking about the “pillar of her past,” the priestess was referring to an actual pillar in front of the house. She goes outside and, using her telekinetic powers, is able to retrieve a box containing a mysterious key.
As I’ve said before, some of the most interesting moments from the series thus far have been those in which Macy directly addresses the impact Marisol’s abandonment has had on her life. Considering tonight’s revelations suggest something especially sinister is at play, I’m very curious to see where this mystery goes and how it potentially relates to the impending apocalypse.