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Pagans in the Media
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Were We "Charmed"?

Well, sort of.

And pretty much in spite of ourselves at that.

O.K., let's get the flawed stuff out of the way right now (Just so that anyone that didn't like the show doesn't have to read this whole thing and can have that extra five minutes to write to Mr. Spelling...)

  1. There is no "maker" that Witches regularly chant about in front of an altar. There is Goddess and God and a lot of other deities or the One.

    No maker, no maker, no maker.

    Let's face it, kids. We are going to be hearing a lot of "power of three" type spells from now on. Just breaking you in a little.

    On the plus side, it WILL make that coven formation a little easier since we have now whittled "The Craft" requirement down from four Witches to just three. (But then again, maybe we can only waive that rule if they are all blood relatives? The show wasn't very clear about that.)

  2. Warlocks are not in the habit of chasing down Witches to steal their powers. If there is a major flaw in the show, this is it.

    No, not the warlock reference. Somebody has to be the bad guy and for once it isn't us. The use of magickal powers without the balance of spirituality will be problematic for those who practice Witchcraft as a religion. We will probably always see that much like driving without a license. It can be done, but we like knowing that some practice and insurance coverage was involved before a person got behind that wheel. We may have to make a citizen's arrest before the season is over.

    And what Witches have acquired from study and hard work cannot be stolen. Only willingly shared and patiently learned.

  3. The "born a Witch" thing again. This time at least, we have some reference to a family tradition. O.K., I can live with it.

  4. The "powers". I hope that they find some other way to speak of their abilities. And no-just for the record-Witches can't stop time on a dime, see everything in the future and then change it or get their coffee extra-light without lifting a finger. And if we could we wouldn't talk about it anyway.

There are other nit-picky things like thorn spells and lighting candles with fingertips (And wouldn't THAT come in handy when the circle is cast and no one brought in the matches!), but enough of the negatives.

Those of you who must can go write that letter now...

On the up side of the rainbow bridge

The pronunciations were good, the tools were explained well and some ethical considerations were mentioned. The altars looked messy enough to be real-I guess not even Hollywood magick do anything about wax drippings-and the sisters wore-gasp!-regular clothing even when casting spells!

I hope either the direction improves or the girls start liking each other before long. The dialogue in the first half of the show was too tense and disconnected for even the most estranged of siblings. I would have liked to have seen the discovery and exploration of their new found abilities drawn out to fill the first show-so that we would care more about who we were rooting for-and the battle of good and evil held off for more than 35 minutes.

What finally hooked me though was the scene at the bar between Shannon and Alyssa. They got in a few good quips and if the writers expand on this sort of clever exchange, they will engage an older and wider (Speaking of: Did any of these girls weigh more than 98 pounds?) audience. We appreciate a good Witch joke now and again ourselves.

So, all in all. I am willing to give this show a chance. They are taking pains not to offend Pagans too much while providing the sort of comedy/drama that has been so successful for "Buffy".

If they get the mix right, "Charmed" may be exactly what we become.

P. S.-. While Dixie and Ruby thought that the cat wore WAY too much jewelry, they did appreciated the inference that no magick can be properly done unless there is a cat involved in it somewhere. (Can I get up now, girls?)

Wren Walker
(Chairperson - Witches' Voice)
Clearwater, Florida
October 8th, 1998 c.e.

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