Something Wicca This Way Comes
|"Something Wicca This Way Comes"|
|Episode no.||Season 1
|Directed by||John T. Kretchmer|
|Written by||Constance M. Burge|
|Original air date||October 7, 1998|
"Something Wicca This Way Comes" is the first episode of the television series Charmed, which was broadcast on The WB on October 7, 1998. This is the second and only aired pilot for the series. The original pilot never made it to air and was shot in the actual manor that is shown on the show. After Lori Rom quit Charmed, executive producer Aaron Spelling asked Alyssa Milano, whom he knew from Melrose Place, to be her replacement and the show moved to a sound studio. "Something Wicca This Way Comes" was the highest rated episode of Charmed in the entire series. It was watched by 7.7 million viewers and broke the record for the highest-rated premiere episode in The WB's three-year history. The name of this episode is a play on words from Shakespeare's Macbeth: "By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes."
Charmed focuses on the lives of three Halliwell sisters, Prue (Shannen Doherty), Piper (Holly Marie Combs) and Phoebe (Alyssa Milano), as they deal with their grandmother's death and learn that they inherited a little more than the house they grew up in. All three of them have inherited magic powers; Prue has the power of telekinesis, Piper has the power to freeze, and Phoebe has the power of premonition. Together they try to live everyday normal lives in San Francisco, while battling demons and warlocks, and keeping their supernatural identities a secret.
Piper (Holly Marie Combs) arrives late at the Halliwell Manor, which infuriates Prue (Shannen Doherty) as they were trying to get an electrician. Prue states that Piper's boyfriend Jeremy (Eric Scott Woods) has sent some flowers and a bottle of Port, the ingredient she needs for her showpiece recipe in the morning. Piper sees an old spirit board that Prue found in the basement while she was looking for a circuit tester. She turns it over to see the inscription on the back.
The pair then begin to wonder about their sister Phoebe (Alyssa Milano) who is living in New York. Prue suggests that they should rent out the spare room at a reduced rate in exchange for fixing things around the house. Piper suggests that Phoebe could move in before admitting that two weeks earlier she had agreed to allow her sister to move back in. Prue is not happy with this since she and Phoebe had fallen out over Prue's husband-to-be, Roger (Matthew Ashford). Phoebe, who is broke, had been accused of sleeping with Roger causing Prue to break off the engagement.
Phoebe and Piper are seen playing with the spirit board. As Piper goes into the kitchen, the pointer on the spirit board starts to spell a word. Phoebe freaks out and calls in Piper and then Prue to see what the pointer is doing but it doesn't move while all three are watching. She tries to convince both sisters that the pointer is moving and making out a word, but they do not believe her since Phoebe is known to have moved the pointer in the past. Piper then sees the pointer move briefly and then the spirit board finally spells out the word "attic" as Phoebe writes it down on paper. As the storm continues, the power goes out. Piper and Prue head off to the fuse panel, but Phoebe follows the spirit board's prompt and heads to the attic. The door is locked but suddenly opens and Phoebe is guided to a wooden chest. Opening the chest, she discovers a large, ancient book called the Book of Shadows. Unaware of the powers involved, but overcome with curiosity, she reads a page aloud, which mentions three sisters and the power of three having the active powers of an ancestor named Melinda Warren. The spell bestows Phoebe with premonitions, Piper with molecular immobilization, and Prue with telekinesis. Prue tells Phoebe that the book is of witchcraft but they believe that nothing has changed. In fact, the photo of the three sisters has changed, as they have magically moved closer to each other, but the sisters don't see it. In the morning Prue is confronted by her ex Roger, who is also her boss. He removes her from the project that she had been looking after. Prue quits her job but her anger unwittingly causes her to make his pen explode and his necktie to nearly strangle him. Piper runs out of time and can't complete her dish until she accidentally freezes the chef of the restaurant which allows her to finish the sauce off and get the job. Whilst Phoebe is riding her bike, she gets a premonition of two boys on roller skates being involved in a car accident and she prevents the accident by causing herself to have an accident.
Prue still has problems accepting that they are witches and sees her power in action for the first time when putting cream in her drink. While Prue is in a pharmacy looking for aspirin, Phoebe observes that Prue uses her power when she is angry. Phoebe winds her sister up over Roger and their Dad, which causes Prue to knock most of the stock off the shelves. Meanwhile, Piper is on a date with Jeremy, who is actually a warlock that steals the powers of good witches. Jeremy says that he knew all about them the whole time, hence why he started dating Piper six months beforehand when their grandmother went into hospital. He then shows Piper the powers of the witch who he killed at the start of the episode. While Jeremy attempts to stab Piper with an athame, she freezes him and escapes before telling Prue and Phoebe what happened. The trio then create a potion which injures Jeremy and Phoebe has a premonition that he has been wounded but not defeated. After trying to blockade themselves from Jeremy, Prue remembers the inscription on the spirit board and the sisters hold hands chanting "The power of three will set us free" until he is killed.
In 2016, Gavin Hetherington of SpoilerTV ran a series of Charmed articles in the run-up to the 10th anniversary of the series finale. The first was a complete season review of season one, including the pilot episode, in which Gavin comments that the episode is a "classic", and that he "loved the episode".
- Michael, Dennis (October 23, 1998). "'Charmed' has that Spelling magic". CNN. Archived from the original on September 8, 2014.
- Hetherington, Gavin (April 2, 2016). "Charmed – 10th Anniversary Special – Season 1 Review: "Something Wicca This Way Comes"". SpoilerTV. Retrieved April 9, 2016.