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The 12 Most Memorable Scenes From The Original Charmed Series

First airing in 1998 on The WB, "Charmed" tells the story of three San Francisco sisters who unexpectedly learn that they have inherited powerful magical abilities as the prophesied descendants of a centuries-old witch legacy. Together with help from the mysterious Book of Shadows that they find tucked away in their attic, the Halliwell sisters Prue (Shannen Doherty), Piper (Holly Marie Combs), and Phoebe (Alyssa Milano) learn that their purpose in life is to protect innocents from evil by honing their good witch magic. 

More than just another supernatural fantasy series, "Charmed" is also something of a time capsule for the late 1990s and early 2000s. The show featured a girl-powered singer-songwriter soundtrack alongside the Halliwell sisters' tank-top-riddled outfits, which range from fabulous to criminally insane depending on the year. Part of what makes this show so charming (wink) is the fact that in between all of the demon vanquishing and spellcasting, the girls are no less focused on their everyday Xennial problems like coping with overbearing bosses while trying to get ahead in a dead-end job or learning how to communicate effectively in a relationship. 

However, even with all those things working together to make "Charmed" unique, it is ultimately the relationships between family and loved ones that are at the heart of the best moments in the series. From witchy mayhem to tearjerker moments, let's take a look at the 12 most memorable scenes from the original "Charmed" series.

When Piper finally puts the moves on Leo

If we've learned anything from the Halliwell sisters, it's that life as a witch can make dating pretty complicated. That's why it was so great to finally see Piper find someone she had perfect chemistry with when she met Leo the handyman, who seems to never run out of things to fix around the manor. 

While it should have been clear right away that Leo was interested in more than just plumbing from the way that he was sticking around for far more hours than the sisters' salaries could afford, Piper struggles for a while over whether she could or should make the first move. However, after plenty of hints — and a lot of teasing from her sisters — Piper finally gets empowered by a revealing truth spell in the Season 1 episode "The Truth is Out There... And It Hurts."

When Piper decides to go for it, giving Leo a long-awaited smooch, her advance is happily received -– even if he is eventually forced to reveal that their romance is forbidden because he happens to secretly be a Whitelighter. But hey, what relationship doesn't have hurdles to overcome?

Phoebe burns at the stake

When the Halliwells first receive their powers, they realize quickly that there's a steep learning curve, and they spend most of the initial season trying to figure out the dos and don'ts of the Power of Three. While the Book of Shadows tells them they aren't supposed to use their powers for personal gain, they aren't afraid to test the waters and see just exactly how strict that rule is. In the Season 2 episode "Morality Bites," they finally get a hard lesson in the potential consequences of all this rule-bending. After using their magic to punish a bad neighbor for letting his dog use their yard as a bathroom, Phoebe has a premonition of herself in the future getting burned at the stake.

With a little help from Leo and the Book of Shadows, the sisters come to believe they need to travel into the future to save her. The three witches use their magic to visit the future, where they learn that their older selves have used magic for their own gain to terrible consequences, one of which is Phoebe getting burned at the stake for murder. 

After realizing that she risked the lives of all witches by carelessly using magic, an emotional Phoebe begs her sisters to let her burn to protect the other witches of the world from persecution. It's a tragic and humbling moment for the sisters, who suffer through the burning before getting returned to their own time to prevent this reality from ever coming true.

When Piper heals Leo

Things seemed to start off strong for Piper and Leo, but after dating for a while, the handyman let her know he would be moving back to the vague "somewhere far away" from whence he came. In the pre-Facebook world of the 1990s, Piper had to accept the sorrowful goodbye with no certainty as to when or where she would see him again. Beyond that, since only Phoebe knew the real truth about Leo's Whitelighter nature, Piper didn't understand that Leo had been compelled to leave her by the Elders. 

All of that changes when Leo orbs back to the manor after getting shot by the arrow of a Darklighter named Alec (Michael Trucco) in the second to last episode of Season 1, "Love Hurts." Despite the distress she feels at learning she'd been kept in the dark — not to mention her pain at seeing Leo suffer — Piper cleverly comes up with the idea to switch powers with the Whitelighter in order to use his healing abilities to undo the damage. 

However, it takes a while to figure out how to use his magic, and the Halliwells nearly lose Leo in the process. As a heartbroken Piper tends to her ailing love, the pair take the opportunity to confess the depth of their feelings for each other, making it that much more rewarding when she unexpectedly heals him.

Piper and Leo's magical wedding

Between all of the family drama and potential catering glitches, planning a wedding can be a challenge under the best of circumstances. However, when your last name is Halliwell, everything is multiplied by three -– and that's exactly how many times it takes for Piper and Leo to actually pull off a wedding. 

Still, things seem to finally be on track for success in the Season 3 episode "Just Harried" almost from the moment Piper wakes up covered in red rose petals. Things seem to be going even better after the sisters convince Leo to ditch the formal Whitelighter attire in favor of a more traditional tux. While a handful of biker-fueled astral projection shenanigans wreck the wedding cake and nearly wreck the wedding, things finally come together when Piper and Leo realize that the only thing that really matters on a wedding day is their love for each other. 

The magical pair get handfast just moments before midnight while surrounded by the extended Halliwell family, and a little Whitelighter mood lighting makes for the perfect moment.

When Piper gets shot

Characters getting killed and then being brought back to life is a common element in TV shows with a supernatural element, and several central figures die a few times in "The X-Files," "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," and "Supernatural." In these types of dramas, a main character's death is no guarantee that they will remain dead — no matter how dramatic and emotional it may seem at the time. 

In the Season 3 finale of "Charmed," titled "All Hell Breaks Loose," one main character's death is nothing short of shattering. The episode finds the Halliwells facing off with Shax, and right in the middle of everything, they are publicly outed as witches by a reporter. Amid all of the ensuing chaos outside the manor, the sisters end up encountering an obsessive fangirl named Alice, who shoots Piper with a high-powered rifle. Thanks to the media circus outside their home, it takes far too long to get her to the hospital, and Prue stands by in agony, crying out for Leo as doctors fail to save her sister. 

Luckily, Tempus resets the timeline back to the first encounter with Shax, saving Piper from the terrible fate. Unfortunately, Prue dies almost instantly in the fight, a fact that isn't revealed until the next season. 

When Prue becomes a dudebro

The Halliwell sisters get into some pretty intense adventures as they work to rid the Bay Area of demons over the years. However, some of their adventures are a little bit wackier than others, especially when they involve unintended side effects of magic. 

Some of the absolute weirdest of the Halliwell hijinks take place during Season 2, most notably in the episode "She's a Man, Baby, A Man!" When a succubus in heat turns Phoebe into a human space heater, the Charmed Ones turn to the trusty Book of Shadows. However, the Book of Shadows' spell for defeating a succubus unexpectedly transforms Prue into an adorable little twink with a bizarrely modulated voice. From there, the rest of the episode serves as a crash course in everything cringey about 1990s gender politics. 

As the siblings work on finding and shutting down the succubus, Prue settles into his new persona as Manny Hanks. In no time flat, he's inexplicably wearing a tool belt and making repairs around the house while offering unsolicited mansplanations about the male take on relationships. Fortunately for all, the Halliwells swiftly defeat the succubus and retire Manny's goatee to the toxic flannel nightmare from whence it came.

When The Cranberries played at P3

When the Halliwell sisters first accept their powers, Piper is a struggling chef who works long hours as a restaurant manager while dreaming of one day owning her own restaurant. While that dream seems fairly unattainable, Piper eventually realizes she'd be happy just to own a nightclub. 

Not long after the trio begins vanquishing demons together, Phoebe and Prue help Piper make that dream come true by getting her the funds she needs to build P3, and the club is instantly successful, thanks in part to a steady stream of original live music on the marquee. While a lot of the music on the "Charmed" soundtrack is pretty low-grade late '90s and early aughts fare, P3 manages to put on some decent acts over the years, including Dave Navarro, Pat Benatar, and the Goo Goo Dolls (via Alternative Press). 

For many fans, one of the show's more memorable moments came at the end of "She's a Man, Baby, a Man!" when The Cranberries played "Just My Imagination" while the Charmed Ones joyfully danced, having vanquished evil yet again.

When the sisters answer the five strangers question

Of all the strange and unlikely circumstances that the Charmed Ones find themselves in over the years, one of the most bizarre begins with a watermelon-fueled road rage incident. After the Halliwells' magic accidentally collides with the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in the Season 2 episode "Apocalypse Not," they soon realize a traffic jam-induced food fight serves as the first sign that the apocalypse is nigh. 

With Prue trapped in a vortex and a fretting Leo rambling on about the Julian calendar, the pressure is on for Piper and Phoebe to shut the horsemen down without losing their sister for good. However, in the end, it's their willingness to sacrifice their sister that saves the day. While decompressing at the club afterward, the bartender asks the sisters a question from Phoebe's book of deep questions — would they save a sibling or five strangers from a burning building? Without hesitation, the sisters answer "five strangers," indicating that they are finally beginning to understand what it truly means to be Charmed Ones.

When Piper visits Prue's grave

After all of the death cheats and sneaky spellcasting the Charmed Ones manage through the first two seasons, the sisters struggle to make sense of their inability to cheat death once more when Prue dies. This becomes even more important after Grams appears to scold Piper and inform them that they won't be able to see Prue again for a long time. 

At the same time, the sisters find themselves struggling to absorb another big life change: the fact that they have another sister who is half-Whitelighter. The grieving process is especially difficult for Piper in the Season 4 episode "Hell Hath No Fury," when she gradually sinks deeper into an emotional hole until she finds herself lashing out by scrying her way into dangerous demon-hunting scenarios. Piper's recklessness and rage cause her powers to get a bit wonky and makes her especially vulnerable to the Furies. 

All of this raw emotion comes to a head when Piper turns full Fury and Leo drags her to Prue's grave, where Piper is forced to come to terms with her anger over losing her sister. It's a heartbreaking and necessary moment for a death that wasn't exactly clear when it happened.

When Phoebe rides her broomstick

When they're not vanquishing demons or training for battle, the Charmed Ones live a pretty adorably witchy life. Halliwell Manor is the charming Victorian home of every young witch's dreams, complete with its stained glass details, ornate woodwork, and huge attic, which makes it the perfect place for the Halliwell sisters to spark up a little Power of Three action. The manor is home to plenty of stereotypically witchy sights, such as the expansive Halliwell kitchen island covered in magical ingredients for potion-making from freeze-dried sea slugs to powdered toadstool. 

However, one of the best witchy moments in "Charmed" occurs in the Season 3 episode "All Halliwell's Eve." The Halliwells celebrate the witchy holiday by dressing the part with Piper outfitted as Glinda the Good Witch, Phoebe as Elvira, and Prue as a dark fairy. Just as they're decking the halls with Halloween goodies, the witches are sent on a surprise vacay to the 1600s. After some various magical hijinks and midwifery, all while dodging a witch hunt, Phoebe decides to "embrace the cliché" by jumping on a broomstick, flying across the moon while wearing a cape and black witch's hat while her sisters look on with a smile.

When Piper learns Chris is her kid

Marriage takes a lot of work for any couple, especially when there are kids involved. However, Piper and Leo have to face more than the usual share of challenges in their life together. It's hard enough to get a date night when you're raising a baby without the additional stress of battling the occasional headless horseman or dealing with Titan-related theatrics. Then there's the added stress of raising children with magical abilities –- especially when they have a habit of orbing home from the daycare center, as baby Wyatt does. 

After Phoebe learns that Whitelighter Chris is Leo and Piper's son on a vision quest in the Season 6 episode "The Legend of Sleepy Halliwell," she and Paige must set out to help make sure he gets conceived in the first place. When Piper and Leo end up trapped on the ghostly plane together, they finally get romantic just in time to make sure Chris isn't deleted. As the dust settles on the events of the episode, the grateful sisters spill the news to a shocked Piper, who has just said her goodbyes to Leo.

Phoebe turns on Cole

Piper Halliwell's marriage to a Whitelighter might be a daily challenge, but Phoebe's relationship with Cole the demon makes their pairing look like a walk in the park. Things get even more out of hand when Phoebe marries Cole and ends up knocked up with the spawn of The Source of All Evil. 

Everything comes to a head in Season 5 when a frustrated Phoebe moves into Cole's place and is almost immediately fed up with his demonic work schedule. Between the "Rosemary's Baby" tonics and the constant in-law drama, Phoebe eventually realizes that her marriage to the CEO of evil isn't worth giving up her relationship with her sisters. It's a difficult decision to turn on the husband she loves, but she never had much of a taste for demon politics anyway. Realizing that there is no other way, an emotionally broken Phoebe kisses Cole before joining her sisters in vanquishing him for good.