Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Charmed: Hyde School Reunion (6.17)

The last 'high school reunion' episode was the considerably better Coyote Piper, an hour that had fun with the usual reunion clichés as well as a campy (but interesting) demon plot given to an actress who can always sell the material she's given. Hyde School Reunion, from that weirdly weak title to the horrifying ending, is filler junk driven into the ground by annoying guest stars and bad girl clichés. Kill it with fire.

The episode doesn't actually open that terribly, even if it is an exact remake of Coyote Piper, right down to the awkward yearbook photograph that opens both episodes. I don't understand why Paige is attending with her sister, but Phoebe is pretty funny with her reunion jitters. But as soon as the event starts up, we hit poop central. From the horrible butch gym teacher and the contrived ex-boyfriend to the randomly still-bitter and still-bitchy high school rival, it all spins rapidly downhill.

Alyssa looks great in her early-90s leather look, but the rest of the hour is ridiculously flat as she and her magically-brainwashed friends spring some ex-classmate out of jail, only to discover that he's unsurprisingly nuts. Worse still, the sisters solve this particular mess by allowing the perfectly-insane but also perfectly-human Rod Rowland to be melted to death by acid-spewing demons. Because that's not entirely wrong and against everything this show has stated when it comes to the morality of the sisters... Ugh.

There are some cute moments in the episode's subplot between Chris and his grandfather, but that isn't enough to save the entire hour, which is far too bogged down by irritating hag-itude. One of the most skippable Charmed episodes in history. D-

Crimes of Fashion Paige's hideous fur jacket, notable for being where Muppets go to die.

Credits
Guest stars James Read (Victor Bennett); Rod Rowland (Rick Gittridge); Lesli Margherita (Ramona Shaw); Claire Rankin (Paula Marks); Jeffrey Pierce (Todd Marks)
Writer David Simkins Director Jonathan West

11 comments:

  1. Don't shoot me, but I actually liked some of this episode. It wasn't great, but it had some great moments.

    BUT, I just checked my review to be sure, and I do rant about the unnecessary killing of Rick. The blatant reinterpretation of Wiccan rules boils my piss.

    Great review though =)

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  2. I think I was just sick of the show at this point. I struggle to watch season six at all, and literally strained to find any element of enjoyment in most of these episodes, or even any bad areas that can really provoke discussion. As a result, the reviews probably come across as a little whiny. But I'm really happy with my reviews for seasons seven and eight, and am kind of eager to start posting them.

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  3. It's funny, I feel the same way about 7 & 8 as you do about 6. 7 & 8 were tidier, story wise, if that makes sense, but season 6 was at least bonkers enough to keep me entertained. But season 7 is better on a general quality scale, by a mile, it just got dull after a while.

    I'm well excited for your season 7 reviews. I assume it'll be in 3 weeks? (19-20 then 21-23 before season 7?)

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  4. That's interesting, since I felt a real sense of renewed energy with those seasons. Season six just dried me out, like all my creative juices were starved.

    And, yeah, my schedule is exactly that. I can't wait to finally say goodbye to this thing.

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  5. [quote]And, yeah, my schedule is exactly that. I can't wait to finally say goodbye to this thing.[/quote]

    LOL. That's the reason I didn't have any of the DVDs beyond Season Three or waste my time watching anything in Seasons 4-8 for a very long time. Only once someone posted a way of watching Season Four and parts of Season Seven did I get two more.

    This was truly one of Charmed's worst in my book, and I'll never forgive The WB for trying to use Charmed to promote its short-lived (thank God!) "High School Reunion" which came on right after this episode (and hence the title)

    Not even Chris and his grandpa helped me, because since Chris had proven himself a liar and a user and had never apologized for same, I still didn't believe a word he ever said unless it was verified by someone else. I was sure the whole story of Piper dying when he was 14 was just a way of making his grandfather feel sorry for him.

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    2. Yeah, he totes lied about Wyatt being evil, huh? lol stop. As a soon-to-be lawyer, I can't ignore argumentative fallacies when I see it and there is nothing to back up the statement that Chris was lying about Piper's death in the narrative.

      Oh, and I'm a casual Charmed fan who's been rewatching the show and if I, as a casual fan, keeps seeing your name on anything Charmed-related on the internet where you throw shade at Chris, you probably reaaally need a new hobby, yo.

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  6. Quick additon - this episode was one of those that proved that Chris was a liar and a user - how could Paige give him money if she had been frozen by the Titans? Whoever was in charge of the show's bible should've been shot!

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    2. He either lied about Paige's death in order to help save the Charmed Ones and gain trust and access....or she did die and his memories were being "updated." The show's narrative, specifically its illogical maxims and inconsistencies with its own rules of time travel, left this ambiguous . So, this could either be a writing plot hole because lbr, the show's continuity generally sucked or it could have been deliberate. I tend to lean towards the former because you know, crack monkeys could've written the show better. I say that with love. Textually, like I said, there are valid reasons: Chris lied or his memories were changing. Who the fuck knows?

      I will agree with you that the show fucked up its own rules all the time that it gives me a headache to think about it.

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  7. Heh. I remember High School Reunion! I had completely forgotten the cross-promotion. Ugh. Really bad network politics.

    And you're right about Chris probably lying about it all. But I don't think the show ever really understood his allegiances, since they changed so often in season six and they wrote him out so rapidly. Hmm.

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