Charmed
Ms. Hellfire

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Ms. Hellfire

Credits. Mr. Spelling, I know you have enough money to update the credits and remove the shots of the first season hairstyles.

I’d be singing the blues on a sidewalk in the French Quarter, too, if I were in New Orleans and someone dared to serve me a cup of Folger’s. Ew.

San Francisco. The Bayfront. Alcatraz Island. TransAmerica Pyramid. Streetcars. The "eh" is put back in establishing shots, and we’re back on the Halliwell Manor set on a dusty LA backlot. The camera glances briefly at the dead woman’s corpse before panning over to the Halliwell sisters busily rifling through her stuff. Vultures, much? Piper finds fake passports, foreign currency, and ninja throwing stars. Prue finds this really stupid one-inch blade hidden in a lipstick case and quips all Roger Moore-as-007, "Not exactly Avon calling." Q rolls over in his grave. Piper finds an apartment card showing that the hit lady lived nearby, and finds this "scary." Huh? Phoebe thinks it’s "scarier that they were never attacked by a mortal before." Double huh? Prue adds that they never "killed a mortal before" either. Phoebe comforts her by telling her that she had no choice. Shannen monotones that "it doesn’t make it easier" and adds a constipated look. And that about covers any remorse the sisters have about slaying their first human. (Conversely, on Buffy, this type of occurrence has been treated with much more angst and realism.) Next. The Ps’ guilt trip ends as Piper finds a list of "marks" the hit lady was keeping in a notebook. The only names not crossed off are "M. Steadwell" and "P. Halliwell." Prue has a brainstorm: "Someone hired her!" Uh, duh! Piper adds, "Someone who knows we have powers." For the radio listeners, she reads from the page in the notebook as it’s shown in close-up: "Prue: telekinesis. Piper: Power to freeze. Phoebe: Negligible." Phoebe pouts and whines, and I can only add: BWA HA HA! Ms. Hellfire, we hardly knew ye. Your stay on this show was far too short. Prue wonders why a demon would hire a mortal to kill them. Piper adds that she wishes they knew that "before they called . . ."

. . . Darryl "He Whiny 5-0" Morris, who lets himself in the front door. He asks them what’s the big and demands that they "tell the truth" this time. Prue says someone tried to kill them, and shows him the corpse. The Ps explain that she was a hit woman. Darryl naturally finds it odd that the woman holding the gun is dead and full of bullets while the Ps remain alive. Prue gets her bitch on and explains that the killing was self-defense and because the Ps’ fingerprints aren’t on the gun that should prove it. Darryl wonders how the woman got shot if the Ps didn’t shoot her. The Ps hesitate, then Phoebe admits that they’re witches. And they have powers. And a demon is behind all of this. Prue tells Darryl to keep all of this "quiet" while they "investigate." Darryl takes this in FOR ALL OF ONE SECOND THEN CAVES IN AND ACCEPTS THEIR PLAN. Whatever! He looks at the hit woman’s notebook and sees an entry noting an explosion set to go off later that morning. Darryl and Phoebe decide to go together to try to stop it. Piper and Prue decide to go to the hit woman’s apartment to look around, after Prue (natch) stops in at Buckland’s for a moment. Phoebe asks about the corpse. Darryl, of course, decides to jeopardize his career by becoming an accessory to their murder. Or, as he explains it, "I’ll call in a favor and put the body on ice. But I can only buy you one day -- max." Way to destroy a crime scene and cover up the killing, policeman! As for destroying this "dramatic" scene, well, that was a collective effort.

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Charmed

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