Charmed
Freaky Phoebe

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Demian: D+ | Grade It Now!
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"Your Phoebe's So Ugly..."

My condolences to Rose McGowan for the absolutely dismal reviews she's collecting for her performance as Ann-Margret in this weekend's Elvis movie. You know, comments like, "With her squashed-pudding face, lisping delivery, and appalling lack of sex appeal, McGowan is at best a debased Tina Louise." See, darling? It isn't just me. Previously on And The Worms Ate Into My Brain, everything that ever happened to Pepper Anderson, everything that ever happened to Zankou, everything that happened two weeks ago to the Dolt, and everything that happened last week to Raige. Seriously. Everything.

Currently on It Burns! Oh, God, How It Burns!, we fade up on the Manor façade for a brief swing through the front yard before heading inside to the kitchen, where we find the Dolt on his hands and knees, sopping up the dismembered remains of various once-frisky garden mammals from the floor beneath the Psycho's high chair with a small towel. Or maybe it's scrambled eggs. It's never easy to tell when the Psycho's involved. Raige storms in from the dining room behind her brother-in-law and spits the following at his bowed back: "[Dolt]! I need your help. The [ever-useless] Elders have assigned me a charge!" And I'll be taking bets on that charge's time of death...now. The Dolt, much as one would expect, greets this news with a maniacally chipper level of enthusiasm. Raige, much as one would expect, is not nearly as thrilled. "I'm a chick in her twenties who'd like to have a life!" she shrews. "I don't have time for this!" The sage Dolt, who putters ceaselessly about the room on his single-minded mission of post-breakfast sanitation during what follows, sees quickly through the lippy bastard's rampant bitchery and diagnoses a case of nerves and self-doubt. The proposed remedy? "Toast and venting." Which translates into Raige babbling and shrilling her way through an endless monologue with her mouth full, all the while spraying random bursts of bread crumbs at the camera. Shut up, Dolt. You too, Tina. Raige, having so processed through her Issues for the moment, heaves a sigh and orbs out through the ceiling. The Dolt violates a loaf of Roman Meal.

Elsewhere on the Paramount backlot (I believe we're quite close to "Columbia" "University," in fact), a rather fetching blue-collar type (literally blue collar, as he's clad in a light-blue uniform shirt beneath a darker blue windbreaker) buys a hot dog from a vendor with a cart (which, as everyone knows, are everywhere in San Francisco) as Raige orbs in discreetly behind a nearby newsstand (and I'm just going to pretend she orbed from the kitchen to her bedroom to fetch that pink jacket she's now wearing before orbing to her current location, because she sure as hell wasn't sporting that thing in the last scene). And I've just spent more time (parenthetically) establishing things than the subsequent bits of dialogue take to play out. Raige Valley Girls her way through a horribly overdubbed introduction that includes a patently insincere and canned pep-talk, which the fetching blue-collar type dismisses instantly, to his eternal credit. But not before Raige's unnaturally affected inflections and mannerisms put the poor man off his lunch, unfortunately. "Mitchell Haines" tosses his hot dog into the trash, lobs a few choice remarks of the "fuck off and die" variety in Raige's direction, and stalks off the screen. I think I'm in love. Raige, meanwhile, gapes in dismay.

P3. The infernal racket that generally accompanies a demonic attack actually spills into the vacant parking lot before the camera scurries us inside where, down near the bar, Piper makes quick work of some black-clad intruder with her mighty Hands Of Discontent. One of the just-vanquished's colleagues lopes around the corner of the bar to hurl a Flaming Ball Of Death at Piper's head, but she naturally manages a dodge that results in the FBOD fizzling harmlessly against a far wall. "New rule!" she lectures, wagging an aggravated index finger in the air. "I will not tolerate demon activity in my house or in my club!" She then rather stupidly nullifies whatever effect this lecture might have had by blowing its recipient to bits. As the hapless demon's body vanishes in a ball of fire that dissipates almost as quickly as it appears, Raige orbs into the room just as yet another demon, um, grows in beside her. Seriously. The guy initially appears as small, shapeless, black blob suspended in mid-air before slowly morphing out into his full demonic form. We never see this effect again this evening, so I have no idea why they bothered with it here. Stupid show. Raige, predictably enough, is more than a bit thrown to find herself standing next to an agent of Hell, but quickly recovers to bean the guy with a barstool via her orbing telekinesis. The demon crashes to the floor, where he squiggles out just as Piper flicks her wrist at him. "You okay?" Raige fusses as she crosses to Piper's side. Piper confirms that she's fine while Raige goes on to wonder what the hell the demons wanted. Piper hasn't a clue, but that's not particularly important at the moment, for she's just noticed an unconscious and apparently grievously injured deliveryman sprawled on the floor in the club's back hall. Piper frowns as Muggy McGowan widens her eyes and stretches her lips out all the way into the opening credits.

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Charmed

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