Charmed

Season 2 Episode 20

Astral Monkey

1
Aired Sunday 8:00 PM May 04, 2000 on The WB
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (14)

8.9
out of 10
Average
345 votes
  • Astral Monkey

    10
    Astral Monkey was a perfect episode of Charmed and I enjoyed watching because the story was well written, engaging and full of character development. It was fun to see monkeys with the power of the Charmed Ones and interesting to see how the sisters' blood affected Dr. Williamson. Leo's presence around the house is felt by all and it was fun to see Phoebe dealing with it. The sisters are not able to save Dr. Williamson and Piper has feelings of guilt and it was touching to see Leo comfort her at the end. I look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!!!
  • The Repo Doctor and his Triad of Primates...

    8.0
    This is another highly original episode that is Charmed's special blend of lighthearted goof and dark melodrama. This is also probably the best episode down the stretch for Season 2, from which we saw diminishing returns.

    First of all, as he was in Awakened, Matthew Glave is excellent here as the doctor whose obsession leads him on a descent into madness. His sister's need for a kidney smartly set up his sudden transformation into gruesome repo man. He made a very imposing antagonist for the sisters coupled with the moral ambiguity of dealing with a once innocent human. The final showdown with him was also well done, even if a bit fortunate.

    The lighthearted moments mainly came from some interaction between Phoebe and Leo, including a priceless scene when Leo accidently asked Phoebe if she wanted to do it on a cloud. Haha... Phoebe's issues with Leo here are somewhat out of character for her, considering how close her and Leo always seem to be. Of course, she gets over it for the end.

    There is also some tomfoolery involving a trio of chimps. I normally don't care for monkeys being involved with the proceedings, but it actually works alright here. The writers didn't try too hard to wring comedy from the primates. I find it hard to believe that mystic powers would be carried through blood, but I can accept it as part of this story. The truly different aspect of this episode is the moral dilemma presented with killing the doctor, and the guilt that builds on Piper as she realizes where this all started and where it is all going to inevitably end up. The guilt is a little off base since the doctor's own obsession led to his demise, and actually, the guilt could have been much worse if the doctor would have killed some actual innocents instead of fortunately picking on criminals. On the other hand, Charmed is more about Piper's growth than any other character, and we see clearly the young Piper here: unhappy with her powers and unwilling to accept that dark world that comes with them. Piper would become a much tougher character by the end.
  • Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. So say the three wise monkeys!

    6.5
    I personally found this one a big let down after the excellence of the one in which Piper was critically ill and had her life saved by the very same doctor who now seems to have completely lost it and turned not only into a serial killer, but insane as well.

    The poor old doctor (well, not so old doctor) seems to find it necessary to harvest organs from as many people in as short a time as possible. Clearly, he is not in his right mind and Piper feels a great need to help him after all that he did for her. The trouble is, he is not the same chap and not QUITE so easy to reason with.

    This one could have been much better, but the actor playing the role of the doctor did an excellent job. A fine performance.
  • I Mock You with My Monkey Pants!

    8.9
    One thing I loved about early Charmed was the amazing ability the writer's had to blend potentially corny humor into the same episode which features a man killing people and harvesting their organs. The undeniable lameness of the monkey storyline in this episode (which is, admittedly, sorta fun) strikes a really weird contrast to the heavily dark proceedings in the A-plot, making Astral Monkey one of the best episodes from season two and a series-best writing effort from creator Constance M Burge.

    In the episode, we discover that Dr Curtis Williamson has been investigating Piper's miraculous recovery from Aroya fever and has been injecting Halliwell blood into monkeys, giving them the sister's powers. When Williamson is injected with Halliwell blood and gets hold of the Charmed Ones' powers, he goes on a rampage through San Francisco harvesting organs to help two of his family members, who are both in a bad shape.

    The principal storyline in this episode is really dark and features an excellent performance from Matthew Glave as the tortured Dr Williamson. His character went through so many different emotional stages in his mini-arc on Charmed, from the caring doctor we saw in Awakened to the psychopath he turns into in Astral Monkey.

    The episode also featured a powerful performance from Holly Marie Combs. Never overplaying her grief over Dr Williamson's death, she excellently puts across the guilt she feels after her doctor dies, believing she was the one that inadvertently caused all of what happened.

    Astral Monkey has a slightly pointless subplot involving the media's intrusion of the Halliwell manor after a paparazzo photographs Prue with a famous movie star. It's a tacky knock-off of the Julia Roberts movie Notting Hill and didn't really end up having much of a point.

    Probably one of the best season two episodes, Astral Monkey, despite the title, spends very little time on the actual monkeys and if you get past all that, it's a dark, thoughtful episode which can't be missed.

    Director: Craig Zisk
    Teleplay: Constance M Burge, David Simkins
    Story: Constance M Burge
    Rating: A
  • Monkey Business

    9.6
    Astral Monkey-The doctor that treated Piper when she was critically ill discovers, and gains, the Haliwells' powers. After being twisted by the magic now within him, he goes on a sadistic organ-harvesting spree, targeting criminals in the streets. Piper (about Dr Williamson): His first name was Curtis. He never married because he was working all the time. Saving lives was more important to him than having a life of his own. Now his life is over and I can't help but feel responsible for that.
    Phoebe: We tried to save him.
    Piper: But we didn't.
    Prue: Because we couldn't.
    Piper: I couldn't.

    One of the most disturbing episodes of the series and the last script to be penned by series creator Constance M. Burge, "Astral Monkey" shows just how edgy and dark Charmed could be. It's funny how an episode that sees 3 monkeys with the sisters could also be the same one that features a psychotic doctor on a killing spree. But that's what made Charmed so great in the early years, the writers knew how to balance the darkness with the light fluff. Well....at least, most of the time anyway! The 3 monkeys are undoubtably cute and you can tell the cast was having fun working with them throughout the hour. But despite a few jokes and hijnks, they are slightly irrelvent to the plot.

    At the center of the storyline is Dr. Williamson, the doctor who looked over Piper during her illness a few episodes ago. It's great on the writers part to bring the character back and his obsession over Piper's recovery is written so well. Matthew Glave is quite the underrated actor as his truly amazing througout. Dr. Williamson's descent into madness after getting the sisters' powers is one of the creepiest storylines of the series and Constance Burge really knows how to write dark drama. The whole killing spree with him going after murders and drug addicts bring some of the most disturbing scenes ever seen on Charmed so far. Yet at the same time, You can't help but feel bad for Dr. Williamson with his sister's illness, not to mention he literally losing his job. I love also the complexity of the Dr. Williamson dilemma as it brings questions like can the sisters really vanquish a human and how far can they let him go before they can stop him.

    The episode ends with one of it's most intense climaxes as the showdown as the showdown between the sisters and Williamson is very well done. It's sad that the sisters couldn't save him and Piper's reaction is truly heartbreaking. Holly gives a powerful performance as Piper weeps for Dr. Williamson in Leo's arms. Also, I almost forgot the sub-plot with Prue's photoshot with Devin Stone and the whole scandal with the paparazzi. It's easily one of the most pointless sub-plot Charmed ever had and I'm just glad it didn't hurt the episode in anyway. All and All, "Astral Monkey" is a wonderfully dark, thrilling episode with the finest script Constance Burge has ever written and it's a shame she stopped writting after this episode as it was incredibly good.
  • Three Monkeys & a Crazy Doctor

    6.0
    Dr. Curtis Williamson, who treated Piper for the Oroya fever, unsuccessfully insists in calling her for some follow-up exams in the hospital. Actually, he is researching the Halliwell sisters' blood in three monkeys. When he is accidentally pricked with a blended mix of their bloods, he becomes insane and evil, killing criminals to steal their organs for donation. Meanwhile, Prue is assigned to photograph Phoebe's idol, the actor Evan Stone, and a paparazzi takes pictures of them, bringing the spots on Prue. Piper tries to establish rules for Leo while staying in the house.

    "Astral Monkey" is a average episode of "Charmed", where Dr. Curtis Williamson from "Awakened" returns totally obsessed, stressed and crazy.
  • What's up, doc?

    9.3
    I love it when they bring back characters from earlier episodes; in a season lacking any kind of arc, it gives the show some sense of continuity.

    This time, we meet the doctor who treated Piper for Oroya Fever back in "Awakened". In the three months since her 'miraculous' recovery, he has been trying to find out how she managed to come back from the dead. When he accidentally gets injected with the Halliwells' blood, he develops their powers and slowly goes mad.

    This is quite a dark installment and, like all the best episodes, has no demon of the week. The idea of a man being consumed by supernatural powers is hardly new but it is a first for Charmed and Matthew Glave gives a great performance as Dr Williamson. I was surprised the sisters did kill him in the end but the vanquish was suitably gory. Is it normal to have blades from circular saws lying around in alleys in San Francisco?

    I thought it was great that they spent a little time at the end of the episode showing how upset Piper was by Dr Williamson's death. In many ways, it was her fault he and his victims died and I'm glad they didn't go for the usual sugar coated ending. Top marks!

    Despite the strong storyline it creates, I don't like the idea that magic can be passed on simply by bodily fluids. Maybe it's just me but I prefer to think of witchcraft being a bit more spiritual than this.

    There is one sub plot involving Prue being photographed with an actor named Evan Stone. This just about ties in to the main plot so I'll let it go. No Dan this week.

    The chimps were quite funny but seem only to have been there for novelty value. Still, I did laugh when one of them projected itself into Prue's photoshoot. By the way, they are apes, not monkeys. Writers take note!
  • astral monkey

    8.3
    I think that this episode is inventive given that they used monkeys to be hosts to the halliwell blood line. I wish I had their blood because I ofen need to freeze, move and foresee things. The episode was good as well as sad especially when the doctor died but in a way it was his own fault. Curiosity can kill and his curiosity of the halliwells got him killed.
  • This is my favourite episode of all time !!

    9.5
    A doctor who treated Piper when she was ill has been trying to uncover the reason for her miraculous and magical recovery. The doctor accidentally acquires the powers of all three Halliwell sisters during a blood transfusion and begins using his powers to harvest organs from innocent victims in a desperate effort to save his own dying sister. While Prue, Piper and Phoebe are trying to put an end to the doctors house calls Prue is assigned to photographing a handsome actor and ends up in the tabloid newspapers.
  • This episode is equally funny and sad. I liked the whole monkey astral projecting to Prue thing, that was funny. The part I liked the most, is how emotional it was, the song that played at the end of the episode, while Piper was crying, fit perfectly. Bus

    9.0
    In this episode, the sisters find out that the doctor that helped save Piper's life, has put their blood into 3 monkeys, giving the monkeys the witches powers. With the doctor realizing that the sisters have powers that are running through their blood, he injects himself with their blood. But because the powers are not meant for him, they are destroying his body and his judgement. This episode was a very emotional one, because the sisters can not save the doctor. Piper is crushed by the fact that she couldn't help save the life of the person who saved hers. Leaving her broken, Leo comes in to comfort her at the end, it is a sad ending.
  • wow! cool!

    10
    wow, that doctor was obsessive! wow! he went in sane! wow, that was wierd. i liked it though. it was mean and wierd that the doctor was cutting the bad ppl's stuff out! wow, odd. i didnt like that doctor, but he should have not died, that was mean. but, i liked it.
  • The monkeys were cute, but the ending was really sad.

    8.0
    My favorite part of this episode was seeing the monkey move the banana with his (her?) mind so that they could have a snack. Very cute. I found it farfetched that Piper would be that hesitant to go back to the doctor. The guy was so persistant, why wouldn't she just go to put him at ease? She could easily have done that, and it would have prevented all the troubles that happened when the doctor accidentally got injected with their blood. I was really sad at the end when they were unable to save the doctor. He became the crazed lunatic by no fault of his own. It was very sad to see him die.
  • All About Piper

    9.7
    This was an extraordinarily good episode. Among other, bigger things, it dealt with Piper's character growing, through her dealing with the death of an innocent.

    This episode proves that, sometimes, there's a fine line between good and evil, that sometimes we have to let the bad things happen for the greater good.

    The black-and-white became grey in this episode - Dr. Williamson did (try to) save Piper's life, and all he wanted was to find a cure for every one else afflicted with what Piper had. To do this, of course, he needed her and her sisters' blood, and got inoculated with it. Thus, he got the sisters' powers. This is where the line blurred. Yes, he was trying to do real good, but killed people in the process. And even though this "innocent" had to die, it was for the greater good.

    The last scene of this episode, which involves Leo comforting a grieving Piper, is so touching that I wanted to cry. It says something about their relationship that can't be said in words - the bond between them goes deeper than physical.

    All in all - a classic episode.
  • I like monkeys! Espically ones with powers!

    10
    In astral monkey, Dr. Williamson puts the blood of each charmed one in three individual monkeys, all called Prue, Piper, and Phoebe. But when the Prue monkey puts all the powers in of the charmed ones in Dr. Williamson using the telekenisis power. He goes crazy by killing people, but can the real charmed ones fix hime, or will they have to kill him.

    Me and my BFF love monkeys, so she recommended this episode to me, so I watched it and I loved it! Even though I never expceted Dr. Williamson to die at the end, not even at the beginning of this episode!

    Holly Marie Combs had great acting in this episode, espically at the end when they had to kill Dr. Williamson! Glad I also got this one on tape!

    Oh and by the way I loved the monkeys, they were so cute!
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