Season 5 Episode 12

Centennial Charmed

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Jan 19, 2003 on The WB
out of 10
User Rating
393 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

In his twisted attempt to win Phoebe's heart back, Cole casts a spell that alters reality, which eliminates Paige as a Halliwell and destroys the Power of Three. Meanwhile, Paige suddenly finds that her sisters have no knowledge of her existence and that past villains have come back to haunt them.moreless

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  • Phoebe is Hot Smoking

    I wish it was me in the kitchen smoking.......
  • Centennial Charmed

    Centennial Charmed was a superbly entertaining episode of Charmed and I really enjoyed watching because there was a lot of character and plot development along with magic and intrigue. It was great to watch the story unfold and I liked the character development and plot progression. The action was engaging the drama was intriguing and the outcome was awesome. I certainly look forward to watching what happens next!!!!!!!!!
  • A Paige to the Past.

    Let it be known that this is the last really good episode of Charmed for quite some time. Celebrating 100 hours of witchly mayhem, and written by showrunner Brad Kern, ''Centennial Charmed'' is far from flawless, but given the sleuth of banal story-lines ahead of us, let's be thankful for small miracles, eh?

    It was a risky move planting such a huge storyline on Rose McGowan's shoulders; the rookie of our three leads, Rose may not have the acting chops of Holly or the deft comedic timing of Alyssa, but the gamble ultimately pays off.

    Paige is caught up in another one of Cole's attempts to win back Phoebe's affections, and is zapped to an alternate reality where Piper is less pregnant and more badass, Leo dresses like a homeless man for some odd reason (I guess no one was doing his washing, now that he and Piper had split) and Cole owns the Manner. Again. (That was sooo last week, you guys!)

    In various other shows, alternate reality episodes can come off as a hackneyed attempt to shake the status quo, but in Charmed's case, more often than not, they usually result in some of the strongest hours from this featherweight series. I guess it's because, generally, they're not standalone episodes, and usually interact with and affect the main arc (if we're lucky enough to get an arc, that is). The 100th outing is no exception, with production design having a blast tearing down the likes of P3 and defacing the manor (although they did get a bit lazy here); the crew do as much as possible to drag us away from our usual surroundings.

    I was a little confused on a few things, though (Leo's evident lack of hygiene being one of them). Why was Phoebe getting off with Demons? I presume that guy was a Demon she was fooling around with in bed. It just didn't make any sense. Sure, ok, she was a prisoner, and a gal has needs every now and then, so I guess she was making the best of a worst-case scenario, but did we really need another reason to accuse Phoebe of being a bit of a floozy? I mean, really? So didn't get it.

    There are plenty of throw-backs to past seasons, with breif mentions of Shax and Prue throughout. Charmed may not be the best when it comes to continuity (and quite a few other things, if I'm being honest), but during milestone episodes like this one, finales, and what have you, you can always expect some sort of blast from the past. We also get to see The Seer for the last time, which was a nice surprise too.

    It's not all puppies and rainbows, mind you. The script lacks the energy and freshness that could have made what was a very good episode, a brilliant one. The dialogue never really jumps out at you, with obvious pointers thrown in to highlight just how different everything is, in case we're slow on the uptake (''that's no way to speak to your husband'' -- *groan* they're obviously not together anymore, Paige, Leo looks like he smells like pee).

    And, as final appearances go (well, final-ish), Julian McMahon decides his last performance needed an extra slice of ham, with a bit of cheese on the side. Yes, his lines were often ridiculous here (I mean, could you pull off that ''you're going down with me'' crap? Thought as much) but even so, it was a disappointing performance from a usually bankable actor.

    And while I'm on a ranting spree right now, his vanquish here lacked the gravitas of the tear-driven explode-y goodness from last season. I also would have preferred it had Paige killed Cole instead of this random, alternate reality, sluts it up with demons, Phoebe. ''I do hate long goodbyes'' could have been an awesome last line for Paige, but no, cipher, chain-smoking Phoebe has to do it. Go figure!

    All in all, though, ''Centennial Charmed'' is a corker, especially by Charmed's standards. And especially by season 5's standards. Whenever we do get an episode as good as this one, I always have to raise the question why they can't offer up storytelling of the same calibre on a weekly basis.

    Like I said, let's be thankful for small miracles.moreless
  • Happy Birthday, Cole (Charmed)...

    This is the 100th episode of Charmed, and it is memorable for more than the number. It is Charmed at its darkest and most urgent. Essentially, it is a greek tragedy in sci-fi guise; Cole's obsession brings about his own death.

    Other than Just Harried, it seems like every great episode of Charmed involves either an alternate reality or an alternate time line. This episode ingeniously involves both after Cole uses his Avatar powers to alter the past while staying in the present. Not only is the idea of a timeline after Prue's death with no Paige fascinating, but it is also a brilliant way for the writers to get around Cole's invincibility and finally get rid of him.

    The alternate reality is really a pretty grim and pessimistic view of our characters. Piper's quest to destroy Shax is contrary to her character immediately after Prue's death, (in Charmed Again, Piper wanted no part of revenge on Shax). It is also strange that Piper and Leo's love couldn't survive in the new reality, considering everything it eventually overcomes. Their relationship is reminiscent of "Morality Bites" here. Regardless, I admit it was a joy to see the wrathful Piper and the bitter Leo. But, of course, Piper and Leo are great throughout; Paige again kind of stealing Leo away from Phoebe as her whitelighter who knows her secrets, and Piper's "going to the hospital" antics are hilarious in the early scene.

    Still, this is Paige and Cole's show, and they carry it all the way, same as they have much of this season. From the super cool practice vanquish on Leo in the opening scene to the final scene where she wishes Cole (and Charmed) a happy birthday, Paige shines perhaps brighter than any other time in the series. One of the best parts of this episode is just watching Paige, Piper and Leo reconnect. This was a very creative way to illustrate how close Paige has grown to both.

    Unfortunately for Cole, Phoebe, unlike Piper, has not really been altered at all by events; she's as bitter towards Cole as she ever was. Her first realization that Paige is her sister, and her wonderment at the reconstitution of the Power of 3, are her moments to shine.

    Julian McMahon, as one would expect, is at his best. The scene where he asks Phoebe what happened to their love is one final moment of brilliance between the two. Julian was just too good to get rid of for over 2 and a half seasons, but now is definitely the time.

    A huge added bonus is the return of the Seer, Debbi Morgan, for this last performance. Her and Cole are two of the greatest villians the show will ever see, and it was great to see them interact one last time. Yes, the final vanquish doesn't compare with Long Live the Queen, but we did get to see the Power of 3 constituted one last time. And the triumphant look that Paige gives Cole when she holds up the vanquishing potion is one of my favorite moments of the series. Yes, Cole's return took away from the climax of Long Live the Queen. However, for me, when I consider this great Season 5 run ending with this episode, to me, it completely paid off. Great, great episode. One that I can seemingly watch many times and never get bored of. That's about the best compliment I could give any show.moreless
  • 100th Times The Charmed

    Centennial Charmed-In his twisted attempt to win Phoebe's heart back, Cole casts a spell that alters reality, which eliminates Paige as a Halliwell and destroys the Power of Three. Meanwhile, Paige suddenly finds that her sisters have no knowledge of her existence and that past villains have come back to haunt them.

    Considered to be a classic among the Charmed fandom, "Centennial Charmed" isn't really much of one after rewatching it. I remember first watching this episode back in '03 and falling in love with it. What a great episode for a monumental occassion but honestly, it's really just a good episode for Season 5's standards. The alternate reality plot has been done to death on sci-fi/supernatural shows and when Cole alters the world, it's not really "that" impressive. Yet as a celebration of the series' past 99 episodes, we get a slew of great references to past demons like Shax and the Lazzarus demon, not to mention Prue's demise and how it affected the family. Leo and Piper are divorced leaving Leo as a pathetic whitelighter and Phoebe is an unhappy queen to the Underworld at the Manor. With these alterations, it's Piper who has the most dreastic change becoming a demon hunter and sporting knives bigger than even Crocodile Dundee's ever seen. Holly definately kick a$$ in the role and I loved her torture scene with the Lazarus demon.

    Other great moments was seeing the Seer return! Being one of the many highlights of Season 4, Debbi Morgan brings such gravitas to the character and even if we only see the Seer briefly for only two scenes, she packs a punch no matter what. You can also tell the budget was used well here, especially during Cole's awesome vanquish. While it was a stunning visual, the vanquish was weak in terms of emotional investment. This is why Cole should have stayed dead after "Long Live the Queen", his vanquish during that episode was heartbreaking and a true exit to such a fan favorite. Here, Cole dies not by the combined power of the Charmed Ones or even the real Phoebe, Cole is killed by her alternate self, which is pretty weak plot point. If it was done by our Phoebe, maybe we wouldn have gotten an emotional pay off but like this whole Cole/Phoebe arc this season, it was disappointing. So now Cole is gone and instead of wishing he came back, it's a blessing. But thank you Julian McMahon for making Cole such an awesome character in Season 3 and 4, too bad the writers ruined him in Season 5. Ultimately, "Centennial Charmed" is a good hour of Charmed that reminds us why we're still watching despite the series' inconsistent writing at the moment and beyond.moreless
Michelle Branch

Michelle Branch


Guest Star

Michael Bergin

Michael Bergin

Handsome Demon

Guest Star

Kristin Richardson

Kristin Richardson


Guest Star

Joel Swetow

Joel Swetow

Avatar Alpha

Recurring Role

Debbi Morgan

Debbi Morgan

The Seer

Recurring Role

Sandra Prosper

Sandra Prosper

Sheila Morris

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (27)

    • This is the only time in the series that you see one of the Charmed Ones smoking. Phoebe lights up in the kitchen as Paige walks in.

    • In the alternate reality Paige can't even orb, but we saw when she went back in time to find out she was not the reason her parents died, she orbed out of the car to survive and could always orb. Therefore, she should have been able to orb in this reality as well

    • TRIVIA: Cole turns a year older in this episode.

    • When Paige is at the cemetary with Leo she observes that all the demons that she and her sisters vanquished were still running around alive and in the manor. However, one demon, Darla (a.k.a. Succubus), shouldn't have been. Darla was vanquished by Prue, Piper and Phoebe at least two years before Paige met her sisters.

    • In the alternate reality The Seer throws Cole a surprise 100th birthday party. However, in the season 3 episode Coyote Piper, Phoebe researches Cole's history the clerk tells her he was born in 1885 so that would have made him 118! However, it is likely that the "100th" was simply to be polite and treat Belthazor with respect, as the cake guy says "I thought you were actually 117" and then the Seer vanquishes him.

    • The window that Paige breaks when she fights Cole changes several times through the episode. When she breaks it, she only breaks the side below and the down side is well, but when Cole changes reality there is no window at all. Also when the sisters come to see if Cole is there, Paige closed the same window and now it has the down side again.

    • TRIVIA: The P3 broken image on the club that Paige sees is a reference to the broken power of three in the alternative reality. The same allusion was made in season 4 episode Size Matters.

    • Why is the Lazarus Demon free in that reality? It was previously stated that the demon was buried till the Seer freed him in the episode Marry Go Round. For that episode only she freed him to make her plan a success and she didn't need him in the alternative reality because she did not have the same plan.

    • TRIVIA: The Lazarus demon has appeared before in the season 4 episode Marry Go Round. In fact that was the first episode that showed that demon.

    • Assuming that Paige contracts her cold from being thown in the water, then would she really start sneezing two seconds after hitting the water? The symptoms of a cold take time to develop.

    • This episode is where Cole becomes an Avatar just like Leo who became one in Season 7.

    • In this episode the Belthazar potion is red though in previous episodes the potion is purple. In the season 4 episode Black As Cole the Belthazar stripping potion was red so he should've lost his powers in this episode instead of being vanquished because Phoebe threw the red potion at Cole.

    • TRIVIA: This is the first time that the sisters met Darryl's wife Sheila. Which is strange wouldn't they have meet her earlier like on special occasions like Phoebe's wedding or Andy's funeral?

    • In the beginning of this episode Phoebe is wearing the same outfit Paige wore when they switched bodies in the episode "Enter The Demon".

    • When Piper and Paige are mixing the Belthazar vanquishing potion, Paige picks something up with her right hand and mixes it up. However it is something that she never uses in the potion.

    • TRIVIA: When Leo orbs to Paige after she calls for him in the alternate reality and she asks for his help he says "all Hell is breaking loose up there" - this is ironic since that's also the name of the episode that Prue died in.

    • When Paige is blown out of Cole's window, she orbs but she doesn't go anywhere. If she was going to go flying somewhere wouldn't she orb to safety?

    • TRIVIA: Cole is finally vanquished for good in this episode - he creates an alternate reality where he was still Belthazar and Paige was supposed to be dead. However he wasn't invincible there and Phoebe vanquished him for good with the Belthazar vanquishing potion.

    • TRIVIA: This is one of nine episodes with the series title, Charmed, in it.

    • TRIVIA: This is the last appearance of Julian McMahon (Cole Turner) as a series regular.

    • During the kitchen scene where Phoebe first meets Paige in the alternate reality, Phoebe is only wearing one earring (on her left ear), but when the camera zooms out she is wearing two earrings.

    • TRIVIA: Michelle Branch performed her song Goodbye to You in this episode, and this is also a tribute to Julian McMahon, who left the cast after this episode.

    • When Paige told Phoebe to grab Piper's hand (so the three were touching), the lights came from the ceiling and Paige got her powers back. However, in the season 4 episode "Charmed Again (1)", Patty told Phoebe and Piper that the three of them needed to be around the book to be Charmed again and Leo said the lights just meant she was supposed to be there. Paige should not have gotten her powers back, unless the three were around the book.

    • TRIVIA: In this episode, Paige says that when the Elders realized they needed her to reconstitute the Charmed Ones they through out the witch/whitelighter rule allowing for Leo and Piper to keep their baby.

    • The Lazarus demon is kneeling down over a dead body when Piper freezes him, but when the shot goes back to him, he's standing.

    • When Cole comes home at the beginning of the episode, the picture of him and Phoebe is on the left side of the table and the box is on the right side. When Phoebe picks up the picture at the end of the episode, however, she puts it down on the right side of the table and the box is now on the left side.

    • On Paige's tombstone, it reads "Paige Matthews. Born 1975. Died 2001". In the season 4 episode "Charmed Again (2)", however Sister Agnes mentions that Paige was brought to her on August 2, 1977, very soon after her birth.

  • QUOTES (10)

  • NOTES (2)

    • International Episode Titles: Czech Republic: Sté narozeniny (The Hundredth Birthday) Brazil: Charmed - Centésimo episódio (Charmed - 100th episode) French: Centenaire (Centennial) Spanish: Hechiceras Centenarias (Centennial Witches) Italy: Cento volte streghe (A hundred times Charmed) Germany: Happy Birthday, Cole

    • Guest star Greg Provance (Demon Guard) has appeared previously on the show in the season 5 episode Siren Song as a darklighter that Paige vanquished in the attic.


    • Title: Centennial Charmed

      This is the 100th episode of Charmed, and a centennial is the marking of 100 years or a 100th anniversary.

    • Paige: And you, you're not La Femme Nikita! You're a Charmed One.

      La Femme Nikita is a TV series about a woman who is accused of a crime she did not commit. She must either join Section One, a government anti-terrorist agency, or be executed.