Season 2 Episode 8

P3 H2O

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Dec 09, 1999 on The WB
out of 10
User Rating
364 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

The sisters must face and destroy the demon that was responsible for their mother's death 20 years ago. In the process, they uncover a chapter of their mother's life that they never knew about - one that disturbingly mirrors Piper's current relationship with Leo.

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  • The girls avenge their mothers death and learn some surprising truths...

    A brilliant episode, much worthier than the score given. P3 H2O (love the title) has the girls facing one of their most challenging foes, the demon that took away their mother, Patty from them and the major source of Prue's neurosis, not only that we meet the mysterious Sam Wilder who as it turns out was Patty's whitelighter and secret lover.

    The emotional stakes are therefore high, with each sister dealing with the truth in different ways; Prue with anger and denial, Piper turning to Leo for comfort whilst reading the love letters between Sam and Patty and Phoebe trying to keep everything together.

    None of the scenes fail in this episode and its difficult to pick out my favourite moments; I loved the scenes with Piper and Leo as they were heartfelt and not at all cheesy, whilst Prue's realisation that she must follow in her mothers footsteps to defeat the demon and her fears are played to perfection by Shannen who does steal the show in many

    I loved the different settings used to, which is one of the things that Charmed usually excels in taking the girls to different areas and places and letting the story unravel their. The Water Demon was also hauntingly interesting with a decent MO, the way it could take over its victims body was eeire and I can remember being freaked out when I watched the episode for the very first time

    Overall an intense, dark and emotional episode which will come into significance later on in the series. Enjoy!moreless
  • P3 H2O

    P3 H2O was a perfect and very entertaining episode of Charmed. I really enjoyed watching because the sisters were confronted by the very demon responsible for killing their mother. The story was well written and the flash backs were done in a cohesive manner and gave the right amount of information. Prue is caught between dealing with her fears and dealing with Jack who now works with her. I really liked how Piper's relationship with Leo paralleled her mother Patty and white lighter Sam's own relationship. Phoebe was also forced to relive the past and witness her mother's death to help fight the demon in their time. Over all this was a good fun story full of drama, intrigue and action along with character and plot development. I look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!!!moreless
  • Don't lose her... Yeah, here's some even better advice- Don't lose HIM.

    Charmed is literally about facing demons every week, but this episode is also all about figuratively facing demons. The two 800 pound demons in the room are Prue's neurotic fears regarding her mother's death, and Piper and Leo's heartbreaking love.

    This episode is amazingly written and acted and deserves its place among the best of Charmed. It is a somewhat famous episode, being the birthplace of the idea of Paige, the savior of Charmed. In the episode, the two above detailed story threads are woven together to create a powerful and even beautiful final tale of lost love, courage, redemption, and hope.

    This is a Prue and Piper-centric episode, and I have to give Shannen credit for one of her best performances here. Her character practically oozes strength and determination, as long as her feet are on land. The episode wonderfully builds tension until the final showdown where Prue and Sam must face their demons, together.

    As good as that is, the Piper/Leo story line makes the episode. The first half of the show has elements of Friday the 13th and Jaws, and is somewhat slow as it sets up Prue's thread of the story. It is when the love letters are found and Piper's thread kicks in that the episode really picks up, and we get some fantastic scenes, one after the other, starting with Leo orbing Piper for the first time on the show, and then Phoebe being forced to relive her mother's final moments. Great stuff. After the final battle, which actually surprised me, the last scene between Piper and Leo in the kitchen is classic. Once again, Brian is completely convincing as the desperately in love Leo, and his lines are superb. Piper puts on a strong face for Leo, but the last look through the door at the end tells us that her heart left with him.

    Dan continues to be annoying and refuses to button his dang shirt. It is going to be a long couple episodes until Leo returns in Awakened.moreless
  • Waiter, There's a Demon in My Lake

    An absolutely brilliant episode, P3 H20 works because of the new setting they use for the episode. In various TV shows, taking the characters out of their familiar settings only occasionally works but luckily, Charmed does so with perfection.

    P3 H20 has the sisters investigating a series of drownings at Camp Skylark, the camp where they stayed as children, and discover that the water demon responsible for the drownings is the same demon who drowned their mom Patty. They also meet the former whitelighter who had an affair with their mother.

    This has to be one of the best episodes of the season with some extremely dark scenes (the drownings in particular) and Holly, Alyssa and mostly Shannen give brilliant performances. Shannen is very convincing as Prue realises that she's the one who has to kill the water demon and it's neat how history basically replays itself, first with Piper freezing Leo just as they're about to kill the demon, the same thing that Patty did to her whitelighter Sam, and also when Piper and Leo realize that they weren't the first whitelighter-charge couple. Brilliant.

    Rating: Amoreless
  • Momma Drama

    P3 H20-The sisters must face and destroy the demon that was responsible for their mother's death 20 years ago. In the process, they uncover a chapter of their mother's life that they never knew about - one that disturbingly mirrors Piper's current relationship with Leo. Superbly written and wonderful heartwarming story, "P3 H2O" (Cool title) sees the sisters coming to turns with the lost of their mother when they face the demon that killed her 20 years ago. All 3 leads give great performances, but Shannen Doherty comes out on top this time. She is brilliant as Prue must face of fears over her mother's terrible fate and get over the pain that has always been within her. It makes perfect sense that Prue would be the saddest of her sisters as she remembers every small detail of her mother's death. You can honestly see how angry and hurt Prue is, not just still dealing with the reality of losing her mother but going up against the demon that killed her must be a frighting experience. I especially love the scene where Prue accepts her fate:

    Prue: Sam, would mom's plan have worked if she had finished it?

    Sam: Absolutely.

    Piper: But you said her power, my power, doesn't work against this demon.

    Phoebe: So that's it, we use mom's plan with one difference, the witch at the end of the dock is not gonna be the one with the power to freeze..

    Prue: It's gonna be me.

    Scott Jaeck (Sam Wilder) makes for a great guest star and gives a stunning performance as the fallen whitelighter. You truly feel sorry for the character as he was forced to live with the guilt of Patti's death for all those years hiding at that camp. I also love the development of Patti and Sam having an affair which is truly ironic seeing as how Piper and Leo are in the same situation. The parrales that both couples share are amazingly similar and Piper and Leo's reaction to the affiar is well acted by both Holly and Brian. The scene where Piper freezes Leo from getting hurt just like Patty did to Sam 20 years before was probably the best scene to show this. This revelation gives hope for Piper and Leo's relationship but at the same, makes it's difficult for Leo as his feelings for Piper are going stronger each day. Leo's little speech to Piper about that was so touching as well as heartbreaking making their relationship hopeless.

    The water demon brought some really above average effects for the series as well as some disturbing scenes. I love that the water demon used his past victims to lure new victims he can drown. The episode also benefits from the great camp setting which is a freshing change from the city of San Fransico. Other great scenes is Phoebe's intense premontion of her mother's death which Alyssa pulls off the overwhelming experience with such passion in her performance. Then there's Sam's tragic death and the sight of his spirit walking away with Patti's is such a beautiful moment. All and All, "P3 H20" sees the writers and actors creating a remarkable episode that will be remembered for its superb writting, a wonderful storyine and touching performances from various cast members as well as guest stars.moreless
Scott Jaeck

Scott Jaeck

Sam Wilder

Guest Star

Pat Crowley

Pat Crowley

Mrs. Johnson

Guest Star

Lucky Luciano

Lucky Luciano

Kid #1

Guest Star

Brian Krause (I)

Brian Krause (I)

Leo Wyatt

Recurring Role

Finola Hughes

Finola Hughes

Patty Halliwell

Recurring Role

Lochlyn Munro

Lochlyn Munro

Jack Sheridan

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (13)

    • TRIVIA: This is the first episode in which Leo orbed one of the sisters to another location.

    • Leo tells Piper that he can not heal her poison ivy because he can only heal when the Elders) allow him. This however, will be contradicted numerous times in the future, including just a few episodes later when he heals her against direct orders in the episode Awakened.

    • Every time a comparison is made to Prue about her and her mom she gets defensive. However, the girls have discussed Patty a number of times prior to this episode. So why is it that these issues have never been mentioned before?

    • TRIVIA: This episode's music features
      Melissa Etheridge's Angels Would Fall and Sarah McLachlan's I Love You.

    • Three buses arrive at camp but Phoebe sprinkles powder on only a few dozen. What about all those other kids?

    • When the school buses are pulling up to the camp the front bus has a newer white California license plate. The camera then shows the buses from the side then cuts back to a front view of the buses and the license plate is now an older blue California plate.

    • When Phoebe blows the digital hypnotizing dust on the camp children, it's visible that she missed the 3 children in the front row.

    • TRIVIA: Shannen Dorhety and Scott Jaeck (Sam) have previously worked on another one of Aaron Spelling's shows, Beverly Hills 90210 together. Scott also guest starred on an episode of Holly Marie Combs show Picket Fences. Although Holly did not appear in the episode, she was a cast regular who was featured in the credits.

    • TRIVIA: This is the first appearance of Scott Jaeck as Sam. He will appear again in the season 5 episode "Sam I Am" and in the season 8 episode "The Lost Picture Show".

    • When Piper and Leo begin to orb to the lake, Piper's head is facing the camera to the right. When they reach the lake the camera angle has changed and her head is still facing the camera, this time to the left.

    • When Sam and Prue were on the dock and the Water Demon went inside of Sam, he had Prue flip the switch to turn the power cables on. Well Sam shouldn't have been electrocuted because he was holding onto the rubber handles, which are there so people don't get shocked.

    • When Prue and Phoebe drive up to the lake in her black Mazda Miata, a cameraman and boom mike are reflected in the driver's side door as they move up to get the shot of the girls inside the car.

    • When Piper freezes Dan and closes the door, the shadow of the juice is seen moving several times, and if you look closely through the glass, you will also see Dan moving.

  • QUOTES (27)

    • Piper: Sam, yes you were clear. My eyes were open to the difficulties, the risks, but my answer is the same as it was when you were still here with me. No one understands me the way you do, no one can.
      Leo: What I wouldn't do for what other people consider ordinary. A conversation that gets finished, a night spent uninterrupted. A night with you.
      Piper: It's like I could've written these.
      Leo: I wish you had.
      Piper: What would it have changed? Looks like this one is about our water demon. You can't be with me up at the lake. This demon is too strong and I can't risk losing you, not for myself or the others you protect. They must as always come first. You know I'd never face this demon if I didn't think I'd be home in time for dinner to see my girls, to see you. She never came home. When did this happen? Where was dad?
      Leo: Your sisters need to know about Sam, your mom, Piper.
      Piper: And if this demon is as strong as she thought, then they're going to need me but how do we get there in time to… Can you? I mean, is that breaking the rules?
      Leo: What rules haven't we already broken? I'll have to hold you.
      (Leo holds Piper and they orb out.)

    • Piper: Whoa, that felt really…alright, oh, laying down now. (She sits down on a chair.)
      Prue: What are you doing here?
      Piper: He loved her.
      Prue: What? Who loved who? What is she talking about?
      Leo: Sam. Found the letters, Sam.
      Sam: Patty and I…
      Piper: Fell in love.
      Leo: In the letters she told you to stay away. Not to go to the lake.
      Sam: But I did. I wouldn't have for anyone else. But I should've followed the rules, not fallen in love. I never would've been there. I never would've distracted her and she never would've died.

    • Prue: Um, I have something to say, okay. I have worked at Bucklands for a year and a half and in that time I have survived take overs, near bankruptcy, and superiors from hell who have tried to kill me. So, whatever it is that you're planning to do or already done, nothing and I mean nothing will surprise me.
      Jack: I just need you to sign this. It's the confirmation sheet on the Fugimotto sale.
      (He shows her a sheet of paper.)
      Prue: You listed me as the sales agent.
      Jack: It was your deal wasn't it?
      Prue: You covered for me, I'm surprised. So, um, what do you say as a thank you, I take you to dinner?
      Jack: But wouldn't that be breaking one of Prue Halliwell's rules of etiquette?
      Prue: I've decided that even though mixing business with pleasure can have its very nasty consequences, it can also bear some fruitful rewards.
      Jack: Um, so, what's it gonna be? Nasty or fruitful?
      Prue: Well, that depends on how you do at dinner.

    • Phoebe: Okay, now remember kids, on your way to bed, water bad, land good, water bad, land good.

    • Leo: I can't find anything.
      Piper: Well, then you don't have to stay with me. Looks of sympathy are not part of your job description.
      Leo: No.
      Piper: Um, why didn't your healing touch work? I mean, what, you can save a life but you can't cure poison ivy?
      Leo: It's not really up to me. I can only heal when they allow me to, when I'm meant to.
      Piper: Well, why weren't you meant to help me? Why wouldn't I be meant to help my sisters?
      Leo: There's always a reason. Maybe you're meant to be here.
      (Piper searches through the washing and finds some letters.)
      Piper: Dear Sam? Leo.
      Leo: What is it?
      Piper: Letters that my mum wrote to Sam. I must've forgotten about them because of the powder. "Dear Sam, Where are you? It's been two weeks since you were last here and I wonder are you alright. Do they have you off guiding someone? And I wonder when they will send you back to San Francisco. To me.
      Leo: Is this a…
      Piper: A love letter?

    • Phoebe: How are we doing in the plan part?
      Prue: I think that I just got one.
      Phoebe: I love when you take charge.
      Prue: Okay, you know that powder that Sam used on us? Maybe we should use it on the kids. Make them temporarily forget that they want to go in the water.
      Phoebe: And that'll keep them safe until we find out how to dehydrate this bastard.
      Prue: Perfect.
      Phoebe: Oh! (They see the kids playing near the water.) Pre-pubescent demon food.
      Prue: Okay, go keep them out of the water. Tell them anything. I'll deal with Sam.
      (Phoebe runs over to them.)

    • Prue: I fell asleep, woke up, and suddenly it's Thursday.
      Phoebe: I don't feel so good.
      (Piper's scratching her arms.)
      Prue: Oh! What's that?
      Piper: I don't know. I itch everywhere.
      Phoebe: It looks like the time Prue got poison ivy.
      Piper: But Prue got poison ivy at camp and…
      (The doorbell rings.)

    • Mrs. Johnson: Well, I'm finding it hard to believe enough times gone by for you to of grown up so much. Here. (She hands Piper the plate of cookies.)
      Phoebe: Aww, look at little Prue. Nice pigtails Piper. (She laughs.)
      Piper: Not fair.
      Phoebe: No, what's not fair is that I never got to go to camp with you guys.
      (She grabs the plate off Piper and starts eating a cookie.)
      Piper: Um, we heard you were thinking of opening up the camp again.
      Mrs. Johnson: Oh, was. I thought it was over and then today another drowning. I can't ask the campers to go swimming in the lake when…
      Piper: Um, we were wondering if you might help us with something. Prue was up here the other day and she mentioned a man, um, older, a bit off.
      Phoebe: I think the word that she used was crazy.
      Piper: We were wondering if you might know who he is.
      Mrs. Johnson: Oh, Sam. Only one it could be. The man's not wired together properly. He showed up when the drownings started. He just stayed here, no friends, no life of his own. You know, with someone like that, you have to wonder what he's capable of. (Piper and Phoebe look at each other.)

    • Prue: Hello?
      Piper: Prue, are you still on the road?
      Prue: Oh, yeah, traffic's insane.
      Piper: Some guy called from Bucklands. I thought you'd be back from the estate sale already. I was just calling to see if you and my car were okay.
      Prue: Yeah, we're fine.
      (The phone beeps.)
      Piper: Oh, that's um, that's probably Dan.
      Prue: You know, he does live like twenty feet away. You guys could get walkie talkies, two cans, a string.
      Piper: Point taken, mum.
      Prue: Um, alright, go talk to your boy, I'll see you later.
      (Prue hangs up. She starts walking towards the dock. She stands on the edge of it. She sees a guy in a canoe and the water starts bubbling next to it. He falls out and Prue runs along the edge of the water. The guy tries to get out of the water but can't. Another guy runs up to Prue.)
      Man: No, it's too late. It's already taken him.
      Prue: Just call 911.

    • (In the flashback, at Camp Skylark. Sirens are heard. There's police cars and an ambulance there. Patty is shown lying on the dock in a body bag with three people kneeled down next to her.)
      Medic: Third drowning this year.
      Policeman: Anyone see it happen?
      Some guy: Is that her little girl? Get her away from here. We don't want her to see her mum like this.
      (Little Prue is standing on the dock.)
      Little Prue: Mommy!
      (A guy runs up to her.)
      Guy: Are you Prue? Your Grams said we'd find you. Why don't you come back inside with me, okay?
      (The guy picks her up and carries her off the dock.)
      Little Prue: Mommy! Mommy!

    • Prue: Flattery will get you nowhere.
      Jack: Well, it got me this job.

    • Piper: You're leaving aren't you, for good this time?
      Leo: I don't know, but I do know we have to stop working together because I can't stop loving you, which means I can't do my job.
      Piper: And I can't do mine. I don't know how to say goodbye.
      Leo: Don't.

    • Prue: Sam, would mom's plan have worked if she had finished it?
      Sam: Absolutely.
      Piper: But you said her power, my power, doesn't work against this demon.
      Phoebe: So that's it, we use mom's plan with one difference, the witch at the end of the dock is not gonna be the one with the power to freeze..
      Prue: It's gonna be me.

    • Piper (to Dan): I feel like I can tell you anything. (she closes the door) Except that there's a demon!
      Leo: And that you're a witch!

    • Sam: In case you didn't get the memo, I'm not one of the good guys anymore.

    • Phoebe walks over and holds Sam's hands. She has a premonition. In the premonition: Patty's on the dock. She grabs a power cable. Sam comes running towards her.
      Sam: Patty, look out!
      Patty freezes him. The water demon raises up and a whole heap of water falls on top of her. The premonition ends and Phoebe starts coughing.

    • Prue: I know somebody who can see anything.
      Phoebe: Oh, no. Wait a minute. You tiptoe around the subject of Mom, you deny looking like her, you can't even go to the end of that dock because you're afraid to walk in her footsteps and now you want me to relive her last moments? How is that fair?
      Prue: It's not. None of this is. Mom's death, Sam's guilt. But I'm asking you to help me end it.

    • Phoebe: You loved her and you blame yourself.
      Sam: Do you blame me? Everyday I wake up and for just a second, just a second I think maybe it didn't happen. Yes I blame myself.
      Prue: We have to see past our emotions to deal with this, Sam. So do you.
      Sam: Even so, it doesn't change the fact that I didn't see it happen. I tried to warn her and she froze me.
      Leo: Why?
      Piper: Because she was trying to protect him.
      Sam: Protecting was supposed to be my job. I couldn't help her, I don't know how I can help you, I didn't see what happened.

    • Phoebe: Be vewy vewy qwiet, we're hunting demons!

    • Piper: Dan, what are you doing at the back door?
      Dan: When I knock on the front door, I never seem to make it through the threshold.

    • Leo: What are you doing here?
      Piper: What am I doing here? I live here. What are you doing here?

    • Sam: I'm gonna see Patty again. (to Leo, about Piper) Don't lose her. (Patty's spirit appears) Patty? Patty?
      Prue: Say hi for me, for us.

    • Piper (on the phone with Prue): I was just calling to see if you and my car were okay.
      Prue: Yeah, we're fine.

    • Piper: It was as if I could have written these letters.
      Leo: I wish you had.
      Piper: What would it have changed?

    • Jack: How's my favorite auctionette?
      Prue: Fine. How's my favorite auction-ass?
      Jack: Ooh. Good one.

    • Phoebe: We should go get dressed.
      Prue: The only place that you are going, contagious girl, is back to bed.
      Piper: But...
      Prue: But nothing. You just look in the Book of Shadows for this thing's Achilles heel.
      Piper: But what if there isn't one?
      Phoebe: Then we're screwed.

    • Prue: I fell asleep, I woke up, and suddenly it's Thursday.

  • NOTES (3)


    • The drownings in this episode and its taking place in a summer camp set on a lakefront are very reminiscent of the "Friday the 13th" series of horror movies, in which the spirit of a drowned boy, Jason Voorhees, becomes an unstoppable murderer of counselors and camp attendees at Camp Crystal Lake, with him often rising from the water to attack.

    • Title: P3 H20

      P3 is the Power of Three and H2O is the chemical composition of water. It was a water demon who killed the girls mother years earlier and the power of three that was at this time facing it which brings about this title. As well it could be a reference to the 1998 movie Halloween H2O.

    • Phoebe: Be vewy, vewy quiet, we're hunting demons.

      This is a reference to Looney Toons cartoons. Whenever Elmer Fudd was hunting Bugs Bunny, he said, "Be vewy, vewy quiet, I'm hunting wabbits."

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