“This is not a witch hunt,” says an exasperated Marisol Vera (Valerie Cruz) in the first episode of the Charmed reboot, echoing a frustration felt by many in recent months when accused sexual abusers claim to be persecuted by court proceedings or public backlash.
Marisol, a women’s studies professor at a university in fictional Hilltowne, Michigan, is discussing an all-too-familiar situation: the case of a colleague, Professor Taine, who’s been accused of sexual assault by multiple women. Using the term “witch hunt”—which once referred to the murder of supposed witches in the Middle Ages but now is often appropriated by alleged abusers of all kinds—in a show about actual witches is a clever way to unite the dialogue surrounding an accused sexual abuser with the show’s protagonists, who are indeed witches, though not in the traditional sense.
Marisol has three daughters: Melanie or “Mel” (Melonie Diaz), an outspoken feminist and activist, and her younger sister Maggie (Sarah Jeffery), who’s more into parties than politics. After their mother’s mysterious death, some weird shit starts going down and Mel and Maggie soon find out they have a half-sister, the brainy scientist and grad student Macy (Madeleine Mantock).
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