Monday, October 14

Second Take: ‘Charmed’ reboot to cast a spell with prequel storyline

The CW announced it will remake a prequel version of the 2000s show "Charmed" featuring a new cast of witches. (Creative Commons by Wkikpedystka96 via Wikimedia)

The CW announced it will remake a prequel version of the 2000s show "Charmed" featuring a new cast of witches. (Creative Commons by Wkikpedystka96 via Wikimedia)

Fans better be charmed with The CW’s television reboot of “Charmed.”

The CW announced its development Thursday of a rendition of the 1998 to 2006 show “Charmed,” which will take place in the 1970s with a new cast of witches. Although some viewers criticized The CW for excluding original cast members Alyssa Milano, Shannen Doherty, Holly Marie Combs and Rose McGowan, a prequel remake of the show offers the franchise a chance to refresh its captivating story with updated graphics and new characters.

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“Charmed” documents the life of three sister witches who defend San Francisco from the dark forces of demons and other horrifying monsters. Fighting evil in eight seasons and more than 170 episodes, the Halliwell sisters became some of my favorite characters in the reruns I watched before middle school while guzzling down a bowl of mini wheats.

A reboot would presumably reenergize the storyline with modern technology and a fresh storyline, thus providing a new platform for its spellbinding sisterhood and creative curses.

Although I was entranced by epic battles with monsters such as the Tall Man or The Source of all Evil as a child, the early 2000s cheesy, computerized demon vanquishings distract from the multifaceted storyline in the modern age.

With today’s computer innovation, the special effect limitations hinder a 21st century viewing of the old show despite its complex characters and unpredictable twists and turns. Potion bottle explosions that seemed sobewitching as a fifth grader now just look like flashes of red and blue ’90s computer graphics.

Hopefully the new sisters will be able to vanquish demons without the aid of a smoke machine.

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When the show premieres, it will join the ranks of other television show reboots in recent years such as “Fuller House” and “The X-Files,” which disappointed fans of the original series.

However, unlike its not-so-popular reboot predecessors, the show should be successful because of The CW’s prequel-like take on the series. While other series remakes have focused on the future following the events within the original shows, The CW announced it would be reimagining the story from before the time of the original Halliwell sisters.

The show won’t have to devote itself to maintaining the integrity of the original characters since it will be focusing on the lives of a new magical Power of Three with different characters and actresses.

Although it’s hard to imagine anyone besides the original Halliwell sisters playing the iconic roles of the charmed ones, the time shift provides a welcome change from the already well-known lives of Prue, Piper, Phoebe and Paige while still remaining close enough to the original series to not drastically change its story.

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“Better Call Saul,” a 2015 spin off of “Breaking Bad,” took a similar prequel route following the life of lawyer James McGill (Bob Odenkirk), six years before his appearance on “Breaking Bad” as Saul Goodman. The reboot resulted in a 97 percent Rotten Tomatoes score and critical acclaim.

The new “Charmed” should imitate the success of “Better Call Saul,” which it achieves by hearkening to its mother series while still maintaining its own originality. Although “Better Call Saul” uses one character from “Breaking Bad,” the series tells its own tale; it distances itself from the original but still maintains its gritty drama in the crime stories, centering around one of the original series’ characters.

Hopefully the new Charmed Ones will similarly captivate viewers’ hearts in a revamped magical battle against evil. While the Halliwell sisters will always be some of my favorite television characters, I am looking forward to a fresh take on the demon vanquishing of my childhood.

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A&E editor

Nickolai is the A&E editor. He was previously the assistant A&E editor for the Lifestyle beat and an A&E reporter.

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