Prue’s Death in ‘Charmed’ Always Made Perfect Sense


The big picture

  • Prue's death was a real gamble
    and his tragic story always suits his character best.
  • Losing Prue highlighted the dangers of being a witch, especially after Patty's death.
  • Death was Prue's inevitable end, teaching her to accept it, leaving a tragic but fitting ending.

enchanted, which aired from 1998 to 2006, saw three sisters team up to stop evil threats (demons, the source of all evil, and the like) as the most powerful good witches the world has ever seen: the Enchanted . These sisters were originally Prue (Shannen Doherty), Piper (Holly Marie Combs), and Phoebe (Alyssa Milano), three women who had spent their lives in San Francisco and were now tasked with preventing the city from being destroyed on a weekly basis. But shortly after the end of the third season, Doherty left the show and Prue was killed off after Prue and Piper were killed. by the killer of the Fountain, Shax (Michael Bailey Smith), at the end of the third season.

Due to behind-the-scenes issues allegedly responsible for Doherty's exit (of which there have been many rumors circulating for over two decades), many have speculated what the show would have been like if Prue had survived and one of the other sisters died, namely Phoebe, leaving room for Paige (Rose McGowan) to join the family instead. However, planned or not, Prue's death always made perfect sense and tragically brought real interest to the Halliwells' lives as witches in a way that the death of their mother Patty (Finola Hughes) and Grandma Penny (Jennifer Rhodes) could never.

Charmed (1998)

Three Halliwell sisters discover that they are descended from a line of good witches and are destined to fight the forces of evil, using their combined witchcraft power known as the “Power of Three”.

Publication date
October 7, 1998

Main genre


Number of episodes

Prue had a life that followed her mother's on 'Charmed'

Throughout her life, Prue unconsciously tried to separate herself from her mother as much as possible. The thought of ending up like her mother scared her and she felt it was inevitable. Turns out Prue was right, which made her ending even more tragic than it already would have been. Fate puts Prue in shoes similar to her mother'sas Prue even points out these similarities in the season 2 episode “P3 H20” as they confront the demon that killed Patty: there is no successful relationship, responsible for a family and the real possibility of dying young for being an enchanted. As the older sister, and arguably the most powerful of the three, Prue often takes the initiative and stands up to protect Piper and Phoebe from the harm they face. She is the one who is constantly at the front with her sisters on either side of her, ready to take the brunt of an enemy attack. This is even true when they face the demon that killed their motheras Prue's telekinetic powers are the key and she is the one who faces going out to the lake dock to kill the monster.

Even with Prue aware of the similarities between her mother and herself, nothing really changed. She was unable to find a successful relationship with a man, only brief flings such as with Jack (Lochlyn Munro), and nothing would have taken Prue from being the head of the household. The weight of it never left, regardless of the fact that Piper's club started giving them the money to pay their bills.

After Prue's death, Piper and Phoebe understand the gravity and cost of being a witch much more than before. Piper's biggest worry, until Prue's death, had been that her witch duties would make it impossible to have a normal life. Phoebe, on the other hand, absolutely loved being a witch and thought it was fun, as we see Paige and Billie (Kaley Cuoco) later in the series before they experience the cost and loss that comes with their powers. Losing his mother to a demon emphasized how dangerous he could be, but it happened when the girls were so young that Prue was really the only one to understand how extreme the stakes were early on. Losing Patty hardened Prue and made her the protector of the family, something her grandmother always impressed upon them as children. In short, much of Prue's history adds to her tragically young self.


The best guest star on 'Charmed' was in its first season

This tragic character set a standard in the show's first season.

Prue's death finally made “enchanted” better

The highlight is the third season episode “Death Takes A Halliwell”, where Prue encounters the Angel of Death and tries to fight him while trying to claim the souls of two innocents. The lesson of this episode, for Prue, is this death is not the enemy, and he cannot prevent death from occurring no matter how hard he fights. It's something she's been struggling with since losing her mother, and something she's continued to be terrified of, with that fear only highlighted by the death of her longtime lover, Andy (TW King) and his grandmother. But since the episode aired shortly before Prue's death, it also serves as a warning to Prue not to fight death in general. Death taunts that it's not Prue's time yetand if Prue didn't have that untimely encounter, she might have fought death (while dead) and not found peace with her loved ones in the afterlife, as viewers have seen others do throughout the show.

There's no doubt that Prue would have preferred to die herself rather than one of her sisters, and it really wouldn't have worked if one of her sisters had died. Prue wouldn't have been able to continue if she had lost Piper and/or Phoebe. She was practically their mother for all intents and purposes, and spent much of her life taking care of them and making sure they were always taken care of. This was essentially his purpose in the world, and he felt the pressure of it until the day he died. And, after losing one of his sisters, it seems unlikely that Prue could have opened up and let Paige into his world. The guilt would have eaten Prue alive, and she likely wouldn't have been able to fulfill her Wicca duties and keep the world safe. Prue had already felt the weight of loss so fully throughout her life, much more than her sisters because she was the eldest, and it would have pushed her over the edge. Even after Andy's death, Prue considered giving it all up due to this loss in the Season 2 premiere when Abraxas threatened to take their powers away completely.

In the end, Prue's story ended exactly as the writers had always made it seem like it would: His death. While it's sad (and this is coming from someone whose favorite Charmed character is and always has been Prue), it's also tragically beautiful. Viewers could infer that Prue was reunited with her mother and long-lost love in the afterlife, happy to see her sisters live long and happy lives because of her sacrifice. Prue's death gave Piper the strength to step up and an example of how to run the family, and the other two sisters were always much more likely to accept Paige than Prue. Planned or not, the enchanted the writers told an unexpected, devastating and fantastic story with Prue. While it would have been great to see her happily ever after alive, the ending fits the character incredibly well.

The eight seasons of enchanted are streaming on Prime Video.

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