Season 4 Episode 14

The Three Faces of Phoebe

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Feb 14, 2002 on The WB

Episode Fan Reviews (14)

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  • The Three Faeces of Phoebe

    I'm usually one of Alyssa Milano's harshest critics, mainly because I want to stick my tongue into an electrical appliance whenever she appears on screen. But, occasionally, she acts pretty well. This is one of the (few) occasions where she is good throughout, probably because her character name is in the title but, y'know, whatever...

    The Three Faces of Phoebe sees the slutty one getting cold feet over her imminent wedding to Cole and conjuring up two different versions of herself, a free-spirited and excitable young Phoebe and an old, more experienced Phoebe, to decide whether or not she should go through with it. Meanwhile, The Seer continues her quest to turn Cole into the new Source and Paige gets a promotion at work.

    The main storyline of this episode seems pretty pointless. Despite placing Alyssa, once again, in center stage, it doesn't do much to evolve season four's arc plot, instead leaving Phoebe with the moral that she has to make her own decisions for once, instead of relying on others. Yes, that's it. Alyssa is good in the episode and genuinely convinces, same goes for Frances Bay (aka "The Marble Rhy Lady" on Seinfeld) who gives a good performance as the older, more cynical Phoebe.

    It was a good decision to turn Cole evil again as he's, to be honest, a boring character when not plotting somebody's doom. But it's a shame that the demon story in this episode wasn't that great. Harry Van Gorkum is pretty much demon-of-the-week material and does nothing to make his character Kurzon any more memorable than all the other Cole-related demons on the show.

    This wasn't a memorable episode by any length but does give Alyssa Milano and Rose McGowan chance to show off their, sometimes underused, acting talents. Despite that, the demon storyline is easily forgetful and the whole "three Phoebe's" story ends up being kinda pointless.

    Rating: C+
  • Three equally clueless Phoebes...

    Obviously there is no place to go but down after vanquishing the Source, and this is a ambivalently average episode with some very good elements balanced against some annoying storylines.

    On the good side, the Seer is back and better than ever as she continues to manipulate not only Cole but another fool demon who thinks he's ready to be the Source. Julian is sensational, of course, as the conflict builds inside of Cole. I could argue that Charmed was at its best when Cole was an ally of the Charmed Ones, but there is no question that Julian is at his best when conflicted and evil. The faceoffs between Old Phoebe and Cole are the clear highlight of the show besides Paige's orbing.

    Unlike many of the reviewers, I liked the Paige subplot. I would first point out that Paige did not cast a spell for personal gain last episode, but to aid an innocent. Therefore, I'm not sure why the consequences. Anyway, I thought it was a good continuation from last week. I think we should see more of that. The point of this subplot was to show how much Paige has learned. She gets it now. Her orbing her sisters at the end is a huge step for Charmed. From this moment on, the sisters no longer need Leo to orb about. Paige orbing her sisters will play a role throughout the remainder of series. Nice way to get around!

    As for the annoying, first and foremost, Phoebe's spell is sorta cool as far as the older and the not much to do younger Phoebe goes, but what was the point again? Phoebe needs magic to decide whether to marry Cole or not? Since when? And now you know why Old Phoebe is angry about the whole thing. Sort of unrealistic that Phoebe would turn out old and bitter just over Cole considering she goes through about 5 boyfriends just in the years immediately after. Secondly, in what universe did Kurzon think he could be the Source? Personally, I don't care for this entire idea. You either are the Source or you are not. There is no gather enough demons under you, go through a crowning, and become the Source. Lame. Hey, maybe I could be the Source?
  • Me, Myself and I.

    The complication phase of the season, 'The Three Faces…'' sees the beginning of a more mature show than we're usually used to, with genuine threat, as Cole slowly loses out to the source's invasion. The episode starts off okay enough, but things gradually get better and better as the hour progresses, resulting in a final confrontation with future-Phoebe and Cole that creates a menacing depiction of what present-Phoebe has in store within the coming episodes. There are, of course, a few things that don't work. Paige's subplot had no relevance whatsoever, even though it featured heavily in the last episode and gets more air time here, and for what? We know from past stories that personal-gain is bad so why bother with such a pointless plot? Rose might as well have not been in this episode.

    The past/future storyline was enjoyable enough. I didn't care much for Phoebe's 10-year old mini-me, but I did enjoy her interludes with her geriatric self. Despite having only a handful of scenes, Frances Bay really sells it that she is in fact Phoebe Halliwell. Alyssa plays wonderfully off of Frances' believably stubborn performance, and there's a level of 'tell her already!' to the proceedings, making things far weightier than expected.

    Overall, it's your bog-standard Charmed demon-of-the-week plot elevated by some impressive character development and neat advances to the overall arc. The show will continue to provide such strong outings and that's mainly down to the fact the show, for the first time ever, has managed to find a balance between arc-related activities and stand-alone fare.
  • The Power of 3...Phoebes?

    The Three Faces of Phoebe-Phoebe develops a case of cold feet over marrying Cole and casts a spell which brings a young innocent Phoebe and an old cynical Phoebe to the Manor to help her make a decision. Meanwhile, while Cole is horrified to find that the Source is now taking over his entire being, the Source's chief rival, who believes the Source is dead, is convinced by the Seer to kill the Charmed Ones in order to earn the allegiance of the entire underworld.

    A dark, intriguing episode that sees Phoebe's intuition kicking days before her wedding and Cole struggling with the Source, who is now within him. Alyssa Milano is great throughout and makes Phoebe's worrying seem very real. The whole "should I marry Cole?" spell which brings her future and past self may seem a bit unresolved at the end, but the scenes between Phoebe and her future self well make up for that. Frances Bay is wonderful as Phoebe's old self and both she and Alyssa play off each other so well. Samantha Goldstein (young Phoebe Halliwell) is also good and provides the light-hearted material in an overall dark episode.

    Julian McMahon nearly steals the show this time as the Source grows stronger from within Cole and Cole struggles to hold on to his humanity. The scenes between him and the Seer are excellent, with her trying to let him give in to the Source's power. Also, I loved the Seer going behind Cole/the Source's back and using Kurzon to destory the Charmed Ones. Although, Harry Van Gorkum is a bit over-the-top at times in his performance and Kurzon himself is written as a second rate Source. But despite that, the episode quite well and the ending where Cole lies to Phoebe is dark development as the Source is obviously taking over and there seems to be no hope for Cole. All and All, "Three Faces of Phoebe" is an effective episode with great performances and some dark developments.
  • The Three Faces of Phoebe

    this episode was so great.youn phoebe did a really good job at acting like she was phoebe from the past.and old phoebe was really funny.if ur looking for some fun then this is the episode to watch.also piper was funny and so was paige on her first timeorbing with passengers
  • A great episode that centres around Phoebe and her wrestling with the decision to marry Cole... or not.

    This episode revealed much about the future of Charmed, or rather, the potential future that the show could have had, especially for Phoebe. In order to hear her heart's desire, Phoebe casts a spell which summons her past self and future self, this to help her decide whether she should or not marry Cole. She discovers that in the future, she becomes a bitter old woman, hating Cole for what he does to her. However, it is shown that in the future that old Phoebe came from, she was not married to Cole. In an attempt to take over from the dead Source, the demon Kurzon tries to take over the position, but as this would foil the Seer's plans, she tricks him into attacking the Charmed Ones, which proves to be a fatal mistake.

    Paige also gets promoted to social worker, but when she finds out that it was because of a spell she cast in the episode "Charmed and Dangerous", she decides to turn it down, leaving the next in line to get the job. Overall, a great episode. Could have done with less Source action in my opinion, but still a great plot from the writers.
  • Phoebe has doubts about marrying Cole so she casts a spell that- surprise!- goes awry. She winds up summoning younger and older versions of herself.

    I think it was very telling that "old Phoebe" still loved Cole enough to throw herself in front of fireball to protect him- even though when she first saw him, she hit him and called a son of a b**ch.

    I hated, hated, hated what the writers did to Cole. Even more than that, I hated that they seemed to forget that Cole was possessed and eventually consumed by The Source. All of the evil he did thereafter was because he was never really Cole again. It bothers me because he was supposed to be "the love of Phoebe's life"; and yet, instead of trying to save him from the evil inside of him, she chose to destroy him.
  • A new Source!

    This was one of the best episodes ever.

    Pheobe casts a spell to see if she should marry Cole or not & it backfires, bringing Pheobe from the future & Pheobe from the past. Pheobe's interactions with herselves were just too funny, especially with Future Pheobe. And Past Phoebe was such a brat.

    So Cole is now the Source. How cool is that, I just love it now that he has his demonic powers back. And I just love it that even though the Source has almost taken him over Cole's love for Pheobe is still stronger than all that evil.

    Paige's powers are developing and it was funny watching her orb around and fall everywhere.
  • Phoebe has doubts over marrying Cole, but will she ??

    Phoebe has cold feet before marrying Cole and to get over it she casts a spell to find out is he the right guy for her??. Phoebe conjures up two people a little girl, and an old lady who really are little Phoebe from the past and older Phoebe from the future,Phoebe finds out too much from her future self which reveals things to Phoebe and the sisters. brilliant episode worth watching.
  • A Powerful Episode Running the Full Gambit of Emotions.

    I have seen many show series in my lifeteime, and usually an Episode such as this that follows a Powerful Season defining Episode like "Charmed And Dangerous," is a weak "Filler" type of show. However, not this one! There were a lot of funny and suspensful as well as poignant moments. After Phoebe summoned two other versions of herself -- an old version of herself from the future and a child version of herself from the past. I really liked the old version of Pheobe. She was hellarious when she first met Cole and slapped him. I was in tears at the end when she showed how much she still loved him, all the knowing who and what he was this particular moment in time. When she chose to die for him, she altered the future -- at least the future where phoebe is forver bitter nevere knowing where her love for Cole would truly take her.
  • Phoebe is doubting she should marry Cole so she writes a spell to tell her and it ends up with an young & old Phoebe being brought to the present. With this very screwed up spell happening will the sisters be able to fix it?

    TRhis a very funny episode with Phoebe dealing with her future & past selves. Also I think it's great that she decides to marry Cole, but I hate that Cole gets fully taken over by the Source. I really hate the seer in this episode she is really mean and I wish she would just get vanquished already. As for Kurzon they said that he was Source like strong, but Piper wounded him a little on the should she wouldn't have been able to do that on the old source.

    This was an overall vewry good episode and it was filled with suspence and action. It was also very exciting so i'll give it a 5/5(*****/*****).
  • Also a good one.

    Out of every time Paige uses magic annoyingly, I don't feel this time was personal gain (or last time technically). Her promotion wasn't the intended outcome of the spell. To me personal gain is when you cast a spell to get rich, cast a spell for yourself with a desired outcome. When she fixed Carolyn's face, the outcome was for her to get her child back and to be able to appear in court, nothing more. So I feel it wasn't personal gain and she should've been able to accept the promotion.

    I found Phoebe's spell a bit on the side of personal gain but at the same time it wasn't I suppose. I don't feel that Phoebe was questioning whether she should marry Cole though, to me if you question the groom then there's a problem. I feel she was questioning the idea of marriage, questioning what she will be like as a bride etc etc but not if Cole is the right groom. At least when she cast it. Maybe cynical Phoebe made her question Cole as well but I don't think it was her initial intention (even if that's what she wrote, I don't believe it's literally what she felt).

    One thing I want to wonder is why Cole simply doesn't tell Phoebe, I think the sources powers are inside of me, we should make another power stripping potion.. I mean I get why the writers didn't, but you have to wonder why he wouldn't just do that.

    I didn't really like how suspicious they were over Cole 'getting the knife from Kurzon'. I mean it's not the first time demons chose hand to hand. The Source stabbed Cole in the premier because he wanted him to suffer, the two Belthazars battled hand to hand opposed to using energy balls, so I think it's reasonable to assume he went after Cole with a knife, and if that's the case, Cole is very experienced in hand to hand combat and could've easily gotten the knife away. But no, they all just seemed to automatically think "omg evil!"
  • The Three Faces of Phoebe

    The Three Faces of Phoebe was a perfect and very entertaining episode of Charmed and I really enjoyed watching. There was a lot of character development and plot progression as Cole fought what he was becoming and tried to make Phoebe happy. The Seer was a very interesting character and I like how she played other characters against each other. This episode was filled with great villain scenes and I liked how well portrayed all the evil characters were. There are now new levels of intrigue to the drama of Phoebe and Cole's relationship and I look forward to watching how things play out!!!!!!!!!
  • Is there something I should know?

    After last week's fun and games, I was afraid the producers might do what they normally do and give us another meaningless filler plot. Not a bit of it! From the opening scene we're straight back into the season arc and it's even better than before.

    Cole's storyline is awesome. It's edge of the seat stuff and, like last season's Belthazor episodes, Cole's inner struggle brings out the very best in Julian. However good the action, though - and it's an undeniably clever story - I am in two minds about Cole being possessed by the Source. On the one hand, it's great to see him with powers again; his blazing entrances are amazing and, let's face it, he was getting a tad boring as a mortal. On the other hand, it's the beginning of a tragic end for my favourite character and it hurts to see him so tormented.

    Phoebe's spell is excellent. It's a fascinating use of magic and the past and future selves she conjures up are wonderful. Older Phoebe is a complete surprise: bitter, cynical and totally unlike her present self. Alyssa's reaction to her is spot on. Younger Phoebe is less memorable. Although the part is well written, the young actress clearly struggles with her lines.

    Demon-of-the-week Kurzon (who makes up these names?) is very run of the mill and hardly comes across as worthy of being the next Source. The Seer is far more interesting with the way she pulls the strings behind the scenes. Much as I hate the two-faced cow, I hope they don't kill her off too swiftly as she adds a wonderful chill to the show.

    This week also sees an important milestone for Paige, as she orbs from place to place for the first time. All in all, it's a great spell and another classic hour of Charmed: dark, gripping and, ultimately, very sad.