Oct. 07, 1998
60 min.
The WB TV Network

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The three Halliwell sisters discover that they are descendents of a line of female witches. Each has a special ability (stopping time, moving objects, seeing the future), and they can also combine their abilities into the "Power of Three" to fight demons, warlocks, and other evils.

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Penny 'Grams' Halliwell Charmed
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Penny 'Grams' Halliwell

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  Played by:
Jennifer RhodesJennifer Rhodes
Jennifer Rhodes (born on August 17, 1947) is an American actress whose career spans four decades. ...

Character Bio

Penny 'Grams' Halliwell photo
Penelope "Penny" Halliwell (née Johnson), also known as Grams, is the daughter of P. Baxter and Gordon Johnson. Penny was married four times, the most significant of which being to Allen Halliwell, with whom she had her only daughter, Patricia Halliwell. Patricia is the mother of The Charmed Ones, making Penny their grandmother.

Penny was an extremely powerful witch and one of the most devoted witches of the Warren line. As a descendant of Melinda Warren, she inherited the power of Telekinesis. She is responsible for the creation of many spells and potions in the Halliwell's Book of Shadows.

According to the family tree, Penny was born in a breach birth on June 23, 1930, in Boston, Massachusetts, in a hotel room to her parents, Gordon Johnson and P. Baxter. Her mother died in December 1970. Early on, Penny was a peace-lover, a "flower child" who was naive enough to invent spells to "purify" evil demons and malevolent warlocks, not knowing that such spells were rather useless as some monsters are simply too dark and too evil to be converted to the side of good.

Sometime before or during her marriage to her first husband, Allen Halliwell, Penny had an affair with a demon called The Necromancer, but known to her as "Armand." Penny married Allen sometime in the late 1940's. Together, they had a daughter, Patricia, who was born in 1950. During Patty's wiccaning, The Necromancer attacked, desiring to absorb the spirits of the Halliwell Matriarchs, but Penny managed to banish him to the spirit realm.

In the mid-1960's, Penny and Allen joined San Francisco's hippie community. They made plans to hold a "magical be-in" at the manor and tap into the power of the Nexus. What Penny did not know, however, was that her best friend, Robin, was actually an evil witch who had been planning to slaughter everyone at the "be-in" with her warlock boyfriend, Nigel. On the night of the be-in, Allen walked in on Robin chanting an evil spell, and Robin killed him with a fireball. Penny flew into a rage upon seeing the carnage, and killed Robin and Nigel in short order.

Her friend's betrayal, her husband's murder, and the vanquishing all served to have a dramatic effect on her for the rest of her life. Penny transformed from a peace-loving witch into a ferocious slayer of demons and warlocks, one who practiced and honored all of her Wiccan abilities to the extent where she became reputed as one of the most powerful witches of her time. She learned how to focus her telekinetic powers, effortlessly employing them to perform great feats, and created spells and potions on her very own. She was responsible for adding a vast majority of the spells and potions in the Book of Shadows.

Later in life, Penny started her own coven with her closest friends and non-magical practitioners as members, including her college sorority sister, Gail, who commented that she was "the most skillful witch any of them ever knew".

Penny married a total of four times (starting with Allen), and was engaged for a total of six times, but the relationships did not work out, which made her very cynical towards men. However, she admitted that, at least, her first husband, Allen, was a good man, and their marriage might have survived if he had not died early. When Patty married Victor Bennett, Penny did not allow her to take his last name, a tradition that will be followed by her granddaughters.

Penny witnessed the birth of her granddaughters Prudence, Piper, and Phoebe Halliwell, later earning the nickname 'Grams.' When Patty was forced to give a warlock named Nicholas immunity to the girls' powers, Grams had no choice but to bind the girls' powers for their protection. During this time, Penny, Patty, and the girls were visited by the future Charmed Ones who came to stop the pact from ever being made. Grams was able to write a spell to send them back to before they ever time traveled, erasing the event from her memory.

Penny was forced to keep the secret about the birth of Patty's fourth daughter Paige from everyone, because Paige was fathered by Patty's Whitelighter, Sam Wilder; and relationships between witches and Whitelighters were then still forbidden by the Elders. Penny helped Patty and Sam decide that it was best to give the baby up for adoption.

After Patty's death in 1978, Penny became surrogate mother to Patty's first three children, and would continually argue with Victor about how the girls should be raised. Because of their conflicting views, Victor eventually left his family: the sisters did not see their father again for almost 20 years. Penny was essentially a single mother from then on.

Sometime in the early eighties, a future version (to her) of Piper and her husband Leo and a past version of Patty approached her for help. She was so shocked that she fainted, as Patty was dead at that time, but when she learned her granddaughters actually became the Charmed Ones, she immediately offered her help. Travelling to the present with the rest of the group, she, Piper and Patty made an impromptu Power of Three and removed the Hollow from Phoebe, Paige, Past Piper, Billie and Christy, changing the future. Later, after meeting her great-grandchildren, Future Wyatt and Chris, she traveled to Phoebe's loft and helped to make the potion that would ultimately vanquish the Triad. After a big heartwarming family reunion, she and Patty were returned to their times by Coop and her memory of the event is erased, despite her wish to remember.

Shortly before her death, feeling it was her duty to protect her granddaughters as best as she could, Penny created a potion to permanently relinquish her granddaughters' powers. Frustrated because she thought that the girls would never be able to come together as sisters, she believed that it was not their destiny to live the life she and her daughter Patty led: constantly battling demons and the forces of evil, and facing the many hardships they endured over the years. Whilst creating the potion, Penny and Patty's ghost had a minor argument as to whether it was the right decision or not to relinquish the sisters' powers: Patty argued that it was not their choice to decide the destiny of her daughters, but Penny was adamant, insisting that they were not ready for such a destiny, and that she did not want to put them directly in harm's way. Penny then placed the Book of Shadows in a trunk in the Attic of the Manor, but before she could administer the potion, she had a heart attack and fell down the stairs, after which her granddaughters rushed to her side.

Sometime before her death, Grams was ordained as a Wiccan High Priestess and posthumously returned to Earth to perform special ceremonies for her family.

In late 1999, Grams' spirit audibly spoke to each of her granddaughters, attempting to get them to combine The Power of Three into the Power of One. After the sisters succeeded at this, Grams appeared to them from the afterlife, wishing them a happy anniversary of becoming witches and revealing that it was her all along who turned the pages of the Book to assist them.

A year later, Grams appears to Phoebe when her granddaughter needs advice on whether or not to give Piper her blessing to marry their whitelighter, Leo, fearing that The Elders would punish the entire family because of it. Grams tells her that while the Charmed Ones are destined for greatness, they have a right to true love as well. She knows the feeling; she was married four times and never found true love. Before she disappears, she tells Phoebe that Piper will know in her heart when the time is right. Later on, Grams, as a High Priestess prepares to bond Piper and Leo through a hand-fasting ceremony, unfortunately, Leo is taken by The Elders. Later that year, Grams successfully performs the hand-fasting ceremony for Piper and Leo.

After the death of Prue, Piper attempts to summon her sister but gets Grams instead. Grams tells her that she must move on with her life so that she must fulfill her destiny. Later on, Grams and Patty were forced to tell the girls of the existence of their half-sister, Paige.

A year later, Grams was summoned to Earth and made corporeal by Piper's unborn child, as Piper wanted Grams to help with her pregnancy. While there, Grams is eaten by the "Big Bad Wolf" while the sisters are being affected by fairy tales. It's during this time that Grams finally meets Paige. Paige was hesitant to accept Penny as her grandmother, having only known one grandmother during her life. Eventually, Penny talked Paige into opening her heart and letting her into it; as she was not trying to replace any of the other family members Paige has loved or lost over the years.

After the birth of Piper's child, Grams, being summoned to perform Baby Wyatt's Wiccaning, was shocked to discover that the child was a boy. Grams was adamant that no men have been or should be born in the Warren/Halliwell Family, believing that men should not be trusted with witchcraft. After some convincing, and the revelations of her past affair with a demon, Grams was able to release of some of her bitterness towards men, apologized to Piper, and accepted Wyatt into the family, summoning all of the Halliwell matriarchs to bless him in goodness.

Basic Powers

Spell Casting: The ability to cast spells and perform rituals.

Potion Making: The ability to brew potions.

Scrying: The ability to locate a person or object by the use of a scrying crystal, a map, and sometimes other tools.

Spirit Powers

Wisping: As a ghost, Penny possessed the power to teleport through white-lights. This power, much like orbing, surrounded her in swirling white orbs until she vanishes and appears elsewhere.

Episode Screenshots

02x05 - She's a Man, Baby, a Man!
Season 2, Episode 05
02x10 - Heartbreak City
Season 2, Episode 10
05x01 - A Witch's Tail (Part 1)
Season 5, Episode 01
04x09 - Muse to My Ears
Season 4, Episode 09
[More Episodes]

Penny 'Grams' Halliwell Photos

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