While for the past three years, Charmed, a series currently available on Amazon Prime Video, has been in the news thanks to the arrival of a reboot (which has many differences from the original), a scene from the original is still making waves today. Krista Vernoff, the current showrunner of Grey's Anatomy and its spin-off, Station 19, who got her start in the business working as a writer and producer on Charmed from 2000 to 2004, has thrown gasoline on the fire.
The showrunner revealed that a storyline in season 5, in which Phoebe (Alyssa Milano) turned into a mermaid, was a turning point in her career. This choice of storyline even led her to stop working on the show the following season. But what was the reason for this?
The network that aired Charmed wanted the actresses to be ‘naked’ for the male audience
Krista Vernoff said to The Hollywood Reporter:
I signed on because Charmed was a show about girl power. And about halfway through the show, there was an episode where Alyssa Milano appeared with mermaid nipple covers and there was a huge spike in male viewership. Then every episode after that, the network [The WB in the US] would ask the question, 'How do we get the girls naked this week?'
So that wasn't the message the showrunner wanted the series to convey to its audience.
Despite ‘the money they were throwing at her,’ Krista Vernoff decided to leave Charmed
So when it came time to decide whether to stay on for series six, Krista Vernoff confided that she ultimately chose to follow her conscience.
They were throwing money at me, and the number kept going up, and there was all this pressure. And all I could think about was that I was creating something that was now bad for the world, and I had enough bad things in my life
she concluded. After giving this interview, Krista Vernoff made a point of clarifying on Twitter:
I want to clarify here for Charmed fans and also for my colleagues from Charmed who I love and admire, that I do not believe that the show was bad for the world. I felt that the objectifying notes were bad for the world - and were demoralising for me. All love to Charmed.
We can understand her decision, especially since in series 6, the actresses are featured with very little clothing on them once again during the Valkyrie plotline.