Season 1 Episode 9

The Witch Is Back

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Dec 16, 1998 on The WB

Episode Fan Reviews (23)

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out of 10
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  • Things are hotting up....

    Good episode, this. Having the Charmed Ones meet Melinda Warren, the founder of their line, is a great idea, and there is a pretty good warlock plot to go with it. For once, all the show's characters (with the exception of Leo), are involved in the main story. Rex and Hannah attempt to use Melinda's arch foe, Matthew Tait, to do their dirty work for them, while Andy is hot on Prue's trail and determined to unveil her secret. Meanwhile, Piper finally plucks up the courage to ask Leo out.

    Although we already know Rex and Hannah are evil, this is the first time they have made a move on the Halliwells and it sets up the next episode well. As for Andy, his mistrust of Prue is growing daily and, for the next ten episodes, he becomes increasingly obsessed by her behaviour.

    Melinda is played well, although I thought she deserved a better script. Matthew was a little wooden. As Melinda was the first witch in the Warren / Halliwell line, it would have been interesting to have found out how she got her powers. Perhaps they're saving this for later?

    These early episodes of Charmed really are a breath of fresh air compared to later seasons. The witchcraft is more authentic, each vanquish is different and there is none of the endless scrying and orbing. I look forward to the next instalment.
  • A fantastic episode from start to finish when the girls must call upon the wican ancestor, Melinda Warren, to come forward from the past and help them to re-enslave a warlock whom she captured and has now been set free.

    Since they have accepted the fact that they are witches, the girls have been eager to learn about their past. One of the central figures of that past is their ancestor, Melinda Warren, who burned at the stake when a warlock denounced her as a witch. Melinda thought he was in love with her but, of course, he merely wanted her powers and to eliminate her so that he could conceal his true identity.

    Naturally, Rex and Hannah are continuing their evil plots and doing everything they can to help this escaped warlock gain what he wants. The way he can steal a power as soon as it is used against him is very interesting and was a great twist by the writers.

    I felt very deeply for poor Melinda Warren because she had been so badly betrayed but she got her own back in the end and the girls got to meet her so there was a great 'feel good' aspect to the ending.

    Superb episode with a great script and some excellent acting.
  • Melina Warren back in the 17th Century accuses her lover Matthew of betraying her. He has taken her powers and turned her in to be burned as a Witch. She traps him in a locket and takes her powers back. Prue accidentally releases him causing problems.

    Another smart episode to follow up the last one. Good storyline and very entertaining. In a way this story took some setting up from pieces of former stories. Melina Warren played by Tyler Layton is the first Witch in the line of the Warren's which the Halliwell sisters are now the current descendants of. She also started the Book of Shadows. Matthew Tate played by Billy Wirth is a Warlock who stole her powers and then turned her in to be burned as a Witch. She curses him and places his essence in a locket and traps him forever. We find out that Rex and Hannah are not who they seem to be. They are Demons from Hell who are bound and determined to steal the sisters powers for themselves. Their plan is for Prue to release Matthew and have him steal all of their powers and then take them from him. So Rex leaves the locket on Prue's desk to catalog.

    I won't give you a blow by blow but let's just say Rex was successful in getting Matthew released. He now has Prue's powers and is looking for the other two women. No one can count out their ingenuity though. They summon Melina to life with them and they learn the curse spell they need to trap Matthew again. After many trials and Matthew getting Phoebe's power as well they managed to stop him and return him to the locket. When they return Melina to where she came she takes the locket with her thereby saving the sisters from having to deal with him again. So Rex and Hannah are foiled in their plan and decide they must up the stakes.

    Andy and Darryl sort of get in the way trying to investigate everything that is going on and Andy threatens to arrest Prue, but she gives him the slip. You get the feeling that this situation will come to a head eventually.

    Great episode and the second in a row that was pretty good all of the way around. Really a joy to watch. Thanks for reading...
  • Great, great, great, great, great, great grandma is back and looking good.

    Along with Dead Man Dating this is one of the better first episodes. The highlights are the guest actors. In Matthew Tate we have our first really dangerous and impressive bad guy. Warlocks, and not demons, seem to be the bads of early Charmed days, and this is the best one. He is the original enemy of the Halliwell line, and he has the useful and later imitated ability to steal any power that is used against him. He is the first in a line of later bads to be able to take the sisters' powers and use them against them. The character is played with overconfident evil gravitas and a touch of sexual magnetism. He is such a handful that the sisters see no other alternative but to seek help from their ancestor- Melinda Warren. Melinda is a powerful witch and an attractive character. She is nearly so good-hearted as to be unrealistic. She became the first character to be conjured by the sisters, something that would become fairly common in regards to grams and their mom in later episodes. The subplot involving Prue and Andy is actually stupid. Of course the police would track Prue down after everything started in her office. All she ever needed to do was give them a statement of what happened. She could have easily done that and just left out the magical details. Then, Andy would have left her alone.

    Piper has a small subplot involving Leo, which is good, of course. Essentially, she has to restart their relationship now that the truth spell has worn out. I still can't get over how young her and Leo look. Season 1 might be the only time Holly looked like the youngest sister, which technically she was.

    Prue, once again, is pretty much the key to the vanquish at the end. The sisters take care of Matthew, and then Melinda returns from whence she came, unfortunately, never to be seen again.

    Yes, this is the first time we get to see a character move about through blinking, shimmering or orbing. It is cool, though not as cool as the other two methods we see in later seasons. I appreciate the improved effects of later seasons.
  • - Oh, my god. She stole a feather. - The past comes running, and it takes someone with it.

    As another average Charmed episode, The Witch Is Back opens up some new story lines and reveals some new facts about the Charmed Ones’ history. Prue opens a locket which brings the terrible warlock Matthew Tate back to life. Matthew has the power to copy a witch’s power and the sisters find themselves powerless against him. In order to defeat him they summon Melinda Warren, their ancestor witch who was the beginning of their destiny.

    The main plot of the episode was very good written. It was exciting, informative and the writers managed to keep the viewers on edge and gave us a nice vanquish. It was fun to see Melinda, as she gave us a glance of what’s to come, and her great acting. Melinda had great chemistry with the three sisters, and a good energy that is rarely seen in guest stars. Matthew was portrayed by a good actor as well, but his character was dull and bored me. There also was a lot of Rex and Hannah in the episode, something I always enjoy. Their arrogance is always amusing. I also liked the fact that Phoebe’s powers grew. It seemed about time for one of the sisters’ powers to advance.

    Leo and Piper’s relationship keeps going up and down, and they’re both to scared to ask the other person out, but I think Melinda helped them on the way. Piper and Leo were so cute in the beginning of the series, and their shyness is absolutely adorable. Prue and Andy’s thing was totally pointless, and his rampage about her stealing a feather was laughably ridiculous. Andy’s character may be fun at times, but in most of his appearances, he’s just boring. I am glad they picked Darryl to stay on the show instead of Andy, seeing as Darryl is a more sympathetic and likeable character.

    All in all, this was a fairly good episode. It had a good story, and over all good acting. Nothing big to complain about. An average Charmed episode, which main purpose was to teach us the history of the Charmed Ones as well as setting the path for the next episode, with the big show-down with Rex and Hannah.
  • The Witch Is Back

    The Witch Is Back was a perfect and very entertaining episode of Charmed. I really enjoyed watching because the sisters are confronted By Matthew a Warlock from their Ancestor Melinda's past. The way Matthew came to be in the modern world was intriguing as Rex and Hannah plot to use him to their advantage. The sisters bring Melinda back from the past and learn how she trapped Matthew and set out to do it again. There was action, magic and plenty of drama. Prue really tests Andy's limits in this episode which was great to watch. There was a lot of character and plot development as the sisters learn more about their pasts, themselves, each other, and test the relationships of those around them. I look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!!!
  • melinda!!

    this was a great episode about mellinda warren! that was cool when she came back from the dead. i liked the warlocks power! to copy other peoples powers and blinking! i really want to be able to blink! i liked the part about mellinda's daughter named pruedence! that was a cool episode!
  • great episode!!!melinda is such a kool great great.............great great...........great great great great o wut ever you know what i mean!!!!!.......great grandmother!!!!

    i loved this episode it rocked.first of all they get to go up against a 17th century warlock that thier great great great great great great great great. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . great grandmther went up against.i loved that they brung her back and got to meet the witch/ancestor that started the warren line.i loved how they got along with her so well and workrd together to stop a powerful warlock. . . . . . . . and in this episode piper asked leo out,this would be the begining of a beutiful yet intresting relationship!!!
  • the witch is back

    this is a very special episode indeed.this episode tells who started the charmed is about melinda warren the charmed one's ancestor who the charmed ones bring back from the past to help stop a powerful warlock that melinda once vanquished in the 1600's for turning her in as a if u wanna know who started it all this the episode to watch.
  • An Old Witch with New Tricks

    The Witch Is Back-A warlock from the past is released from his curse and tries to steal the sisters' powers with the help of Rex and Hannah, but the sisters resurrect their ancestor to combat him. Meanwhile, Piper works up her courage to ask Leo out and Andy gets frustrated by Prue's continued involvement with bizarre police investigations.

    I love it when the writers explore the sisters' witch ancestry and this was the first episode to do so. The introduction of Melinda Warren, the first witch of the Charmed Ones' life is a great moment. It's interesting to learn about how the Charmed Ones' coven came to be and how Melinda started the coven. Tyler Layton (Melinda Warren) is good in the role as well as Billy Wirth as Matthew Tate. He's a formidable foe who introduces signature warlock power of blinking which makes for a simple yet cool looking effect. The only nitpick I have with both characters are their tendencies to ask a lot of questions in a post mordern world, as it got! Though both actors work well together especially when Matthew seduces and threatens Melinda at the manor. Another annoying development is Andy going after Prue after taking an owl's feather from the zoo. It's a ridiculous sub-plot and the writers couldn't make Andy look more like an idiot in this episode than they tried. Rex and Hannah's storyline get developed on more in this episode as they arrange Matthew's release. This devilish due were the first real recurring villains for the series and their mini-arc really kicks in with this episode before only being hinted on in the past episodes. While their plan fails here, it's a nice lead in to the next episode where both characters really shine. The episode has some nice action and special effect pieces like the opening teaser with Prue and Matthew using their powers again each other and Matthew jumping out Prue's office window. Then there's the vanquishing scene where Melinda and the sisters curse Matthew back into the locket. All and All, this is great episode that has develops the sister's family line and develops Rex and Hannah's dark storyline as well.
  • Melinda Warren's back!

    In 1692, in Salem, Massachusetts, the evil warlock Matthew Tate is trapped in a locket by Melinda Warren before she is being burnt at stake. In the present days, the also evil Rex Buckland and Hannah Webster, give the locket to Prue as a piece to be cataloged, and Prue accidentally releases Matthew, the real intention of the wicked double. Matthew steals Prue's power and while chasing Piper and Phoebe to get their powers, the trio resurrects Melinda to help them to curse the powerful Matthew and imprison him again.

    "The Witch Is Back" is another good episode of "Charmed", where the evilness and malice of Rex and Hannah are disclosed a little bit more, but not their master. The romance between Piper and Leo seems to have finally started.
  • Prue accidentally unleashes a powerful ancient warlock from a locket and copies her power. To put him back in the locket the girls call on their ancester Melinda Warren to put him back into the locket

    Finally we get to explore the charmed ones descendant who began the warren line of witches. The interaction between Melinda and the girls is well portrayed and acted. Rex and Hannah become more sinister when they try and help Matthew gain all 3 of the charmed ones powers and destroy them however failing in the end which sets up whats to come in the next episode

    My only problem with the episode is the overacting Billy Wirth who plays Matthew but strangely manages to be quite effective at the same time

    Overall a fantastic episode with good battle scenes, a great plot and an interesting introduction to the Halliwell Matriach
  • My Favorite From Season 1

    The Witch is Back is a brilliant episode, that started to show the beginnig of the Halliwell's line.This episode is my favorite because it was an amazing hour of Charmed, the story, the writing, the acting, Melinda, I mean everything was great.Matthew Tate told that Melinda Warren was a witch and then she didn't deny it because she wanted to protect her daughter and then she cursed Matthew on a locket where he could feel the pain of betrayal like he just did to Melinda, then the locket appears on Prue's office and then he attacks her and she uses her power on him, but the gift of Matthew is copy powers of good witches when they use against him, and then he goes after Piper and Phoebe's powers and then the 3 decided to bring back Melinda Warren, the witch that had the 3 of her powers to help them to defeat Matthew.The ending scene is really emotional, The Witch is back is definately a lovely episode, with a decent story.

  • The sisters summon their ancestor Mellinda Waren who created the powerful line of witchcraft

    In the 17th century the sisters' ancestor Melinda Warren, cursed a warlock to spend an eternity in a locket after stealing her powers and betraying her love. Three hundred years later Prue accidently frees the warlock who is determined to destroy the sisters and take their powers. The Halliwell's, unsure what to do, summon Melinda to imprison him again.

    Funny episode and a real filler to the charmed ones!!
  • With ancestors being called forth to the present, a hunt for the Halliwells, and a hunky evil Warlock, this show is superb!

    This is one of my favorite season one episodes ever. It brings forth Melinda warren,the Haliwells great great great great great great grandmother.She shares the history and culture of why the power of three is here. It tells how these girls have these powers and why they have them. When Prue opens the locket, letting Matthew out, after Melinda had cursed him into in the first place, all hell breaks loose. Matthew goes around trying to find the Haliwells, killing any people in his way with the last name Haliwell. Melinda and The Charmed ones make a potion to curse Matthew back into the locket, and as always come out on top.
  • This episode almost make you cry about what they did to witches back in the day. But of course Melinda Warren took her faith and excepted it to save her life line, her daughter. And now she is back to protect her life line again.

    This episode is about Rex and Hannah gave Prue a locket to examine. When she does a warlock was released and copied her powers. Soon the three sister learned who he was and called on the power of there past and brought back Melinda Warren, the witch who started it all. Melinda teaches them a few things and also teaches them the curse to capture the warlock back into the locket. But before they did this the warlock captures Phoebes power also so now he knows what is going to happen next. Then Andy gets in the middle of it and trys to arrest Prue at the muesum, where she was getting the owl feather the last ingerdient to the curse. When he does this she gets away and gets home just in time to curse the warlock. Andy still doesn't know what to think about Prue being involved with all this, he lets it go for now but now he is watching her more carefully. At the end they had to send Melinda back to her faith even though the sisters didn't want to see her go.
  • After Prue is tricked into releasing a warlock from a locket, the sisters summon Melinda Warren, their ancestor, to the present for help.

    As strange as it may sound, Matthew Tate is actually one of my favorite CHARMED villians. Not only does he have a cool and infinitely useful power, but he's actually a force to be reckoned with (unlike some previously forgettable villians). Plus, he oozes sex appeal, making it easy to see how he could have seduced Melinda. And speaking of, I love that we finally get to meet the infamous Melinda Warren, founder of the Warren/Halliwell line of witches. Also, I like that Phoebe's power advanced so that she could see the past, and that her power was the second that Matthew copied as it would've been too predictable to me if he had copied Piper's power after having already copied Prue's. In fact, the only thing I *didn't* like about this episode (and this seems to be a popular complaint) was the whole subplot of Andy investigating Prue, but that's only because it went nowhere and served no purpose this time around. All in all, though, a fantastic episode worthy of 9 lockets out of 10.

    Highlights -- Melinda Warren cursing warlock Matthew Tate into the locket he gave her; Matthew's remark that "lawyers haven't changed" since his time; the sisters summoning Melinda to the present; Hannah and Matthew discussing "false modesty"; Melinda and the sisters cursing Matthew back into the locket; and Melinda foreseeing "many generations" of her "beautiful daughters".
  • good episode

    I think this was one of the better episodes of the season. I liked it because we got to see Melinda and the sisters ancestory. We also got to find out a lot about their ways of doing things. It was also a very funny episode when Melinda was viewing all modern appliances and all. It was funny when she turned on the blender. I also liked the part when Piper asked Leo out. She did that with such cuteness. She in these earlier episodes is so irratic and spazed out. But on her doing the things she does its cute. Good episode.
  • Prue is tricked into freeing a 17th century warlock who teams with Rex and Hannah to steal the sisters powers.

    I thought this was a very good episode. The sisters bring back Melinda Warren there ancestor who started the charmed line to help vanquish a 17th century warlock. The sisters and Melinda had really good chemisty. It was fun seeing the sisters explain to Melinda how zippers work and seeing Melinda yelling into the answering machine when Phoebe called. I thought the warlock was actually a little dull. I liked that this episode introduced us to "blinking". In this episode they say it was a power copied from a witch but later we learn that it is power all (or most) warlocks have.

    The episode also featured the Prue-Andy relationship taking a turn for the worse as Andy gets really frustrated with Prue's always being involved in mysterious cases.

    We learn that Rex and Hannah are working for someone higher up in the evil chain. Also Piper and Leo finally agree to go on a date.
  • Most certainly one of my favorites

    In this episode, the charmed sisters must rely on the help of a long-dead relative named Melinda to help defeat a warlock in the present day.
    This episode has two of the three items Charmed is famous and drama (the sadness is left out of this one) and it is for that reason I like it.
  • A fairly good episode which really warms up the whole Rex storyline and we get to meet the start of the Halliwell's magic!

    A fairly good episode which really warms up the whole Rex storyline and we get to meet the start of the Halliwell's magic! Melinda Warren, that is in which they bring her back from the past to help them vanquish a demon from her time that Prue unlocked. All in all, I liked seeing Melinda, it was interesting, shame about her actresses acting. But the best part was the Rex Bucklands storyline. I remember being so captivated the very first time I watched the episode by that storyline, it's heats up heavily in this episode. The whole Piper/Leo story was great too.
  • The past comes to the present

    When at Bucklands Prue opens a locket and releases Matthew a demon who was sent to stay inside the locket by the girls ancestor Melinda Warren. This demon can steal a witches power when they use it against him and he makes it his mision to kill Melinda and steal the charmed ones powers. Matthew teams up with Rex and Hannah. Andy gets frustrated at Prue because she is involved with a lot a the crimes in San Francisco and demands to know why and what her involvment is.

    Good episode
  • The Witch Should Have Stayed

    I'm not usually a massive fan of episodes where the sisters learn something about the Halliwell line as the writers, for the most part, just bore me to death with tedious "reunion" moments with old relatives etc. Thankfully, the first "mythology" episode managed to keep me half awake.

    The Witch Is Back sees Prue accidentally releasing a warlock from a locket. The warlock was put inside the locket by Melinda Warren, one of the Halliwell ancestors, and the sisters summon her to trap the warlock back where he belongs.

    It is nice to see the sisters talking to one of their family members about magic but it's annoying that Melinda didn't really teach them anything new about "the craft", instead just walk around with the world's most obvious push-up bra and ask such painfully unfunny questions such as "what's a zoo?" Shut up Melinda!

    That is the most annoying thing about the episode. The constant questions asked by both Melinda and Matthew drag on and on and weren't even funny in the first place. There also seems to be a lack of a story throughout the episode. Story developments are dragged out for ages and the Matthew/Rex and Hannah team-up goes nowhere.

    A pretty forgettable episode which only annoys you more on closer inspection, obviously one to avoid.

    Rating: C-