Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Charmed: The Lost Picture Show (8.7)

As much as it may look that way, this isn't actually a re-run. Sure, almost all the storylines here have been done on the show before, but technically it's still a new episode. Charmed season eight, people -- where things are tossed together with all the subtlety of an elephant parading through a retirement village. Everything here blows, but the worst elements involve the complete re-writing of history, notably in the Paige/Sam relationship. Long-standing resentments were resolved back in season five, yet here Paige is ridiculously antagonistic towards him. And while it is pretty shitty that he hasn't contacted her in three years, the show does such a bad job of depicting her animosity that it reads like they've never even met before.

I actually liked the concept of a demon trapping innocents in photographs, but the storyline itself was horribly hackneyed, resolved with a half dozen plotholes and cop-outs, notably the fact that a whole legion of kids from the past escaped into modern day, and yet nothing is mentioned about what will happen to them next. Seriously, show? And I still don't understand how the curse was even broken in the end, anyway. This is horrifyingly sloppy writing.

Piper and Leo's subplot is straight out of Siren Song and Cat House, and Charmed seriously needs to quit with the body and power swaps. Like Paige and Phoebe's body swap in season four, the actors don't even try to deliver convincing performances, while the spell is reversed with some 'lessons learned' dreck that was just as vague as the 'marital issues' Piper and Leo suddenly procured last episode.

Then we have Phoebe's adventures at the sperm bank, one of the most embarrassing and offensive subplots in a long while. Ignoring the fact that Phoebe abandoned her quest for babies just last damn week, the story was still gross. I don't want to see Feebs talking about her need for seed, and I don't want to see rampant stupidity and selfishness dressed up as something endearing that'll make you feel bad for her. Alyssa Milano deserves better.

I should also mention Paige's decision to become a social worker again. I feel like I'm being tortured with this storyline. Is it even brought up again? Or is it just another example of Paige having such a flaky personality that she can change her entire focus every week? This whole show has become so sad. F

Guest stars
Brandon Quinn (Agent Murphy); Scott Jaeck (Sam Wilder); Jay Kenneth Johnson (J.D. Williams); Will Snow (Vaklav); Bert Rosario (Soothsayer); John Brandon (Father); Mandy June Turpin (Wendy)
Writers Doug E. Jones, Andy Reaser Director Jonathan West

1 comment:

  1. I hated this episode, too, but I actually enjoyed Brian Krause's performance. It was silly, but he really nailed Piper's surliness!

    In agreement with a lot of what you said though, especially season 8 being thrown together sloppily.

    Great review.