"Ooh, very cool powers. I can hardly wait until I have full control over them. Paige, thank you very much for setting me free. Your sisters will be so proud of you."
Barbas to Paige and Cole

Sympathy for the Demon is the 7th episode of the fifth season and the 95th overall episode of Charmed.


For a complete plot of Sympathy for the Demon, go here.
To read the full script of Sympathy for the Demon, go here.

The Demon of fear returns to seek vengeance on The Charmed Ones and the sisters become trapped in the manor battling their own fears.


Main Cast[]

Guest Stars[]



Magical Notes[]

Book of Shadows[]

Paige casting animal conjure spell

Paige casting Prue's Animal Conjuring Spell.

Prue Halliwell's Animal Conjuring Spell[]

Paige had an inferiority complex towards Prue (Barbas started it again by playing on her fear that she wasn't as good as Prue). Paige then tried to cast this spell, to show Piper and Phoebe that she was as good as Prue. It took her some time of practice, but she managed to cast it, despite it being a difficult spell. The entry on this spell was never seen.

To Find a Lost Love[]

Whither My Love

The entry in the Book of Shadows.

Wherever You Be
Through Time
And Space
Take My Heart
Nearer To Thee

Phoebe probably adapted this spell to Astral Project to Barbas. She said she would adapt the "Astral Projection Spell" to do so. Because she used this spell to Astral Project herself to Cole in the Demonic Wasteland in Witch Way Now?, it can be assumed she was talking about this one.


Penny vanquishes a fire demon

Penny casting the spell.

Penny Halliwell's Vanquishing Spell []

On Piper's birthday in 1978, an unknown Demon attacked Grams, Victor and Piper. Penny, however, easily managed to vanquish him, using this vanquishing spell. Although an easy vanquish, the attack caused Victor to leave.

Hellspawn demon,
creature of death
Fire shall take your very breath!

To Call Upon Our Ancestors[]

The sisters cast this spell, which was previously used to vanquish the Source of All Evil, in an attempt to vanquish Barbas, but it failed.

Prudence, Penelope
Patricia, Melinda…
Astrid, Helena,
Laura and Grace,
Halliwell Witches,
stand strong beside us
Vanquish this evil
from time and space


Paige holding the power stripping potion

Paige holding the Power Stripping Potion.

Power Stripping Potion[]

After Piper and Phoebe decided not to help Cole, Paige came up with a solution (Barbas suggested it): she created a Power Stripping Potion. He first didn't want to drink it, because he would be powerless against the thing that was after him, but Paige could convince him that whatever was driving him crazy, he then wouldn't be a threat to anyone anymore. After Cole drank it, Barbas managed to absorb Cole's powers. He used them to get back from Purgatory, and thanked Paige for setting him free.

The Charmed Ones created another one for Barbas, but he knocked it to the ground using Advanced Telekinesis. Paige orbed it into his mouth, allowing Cole to regain his powers.


  • Fear Projection: Used by Barbas to read his victims' fears, and then creates an Illusion of the fear.
  • Suggestion: Used by Barbas to implant subtle thoughts in his victims' minds, causing them to do his bidding.
  • Energy Ball: In an Illusion, Cole used this power to kill two men in the elevator. He later attacked Leo with an energy ball and created another for Piper. After absorbing Cole's powers, Barbas used this power to attack Cole. Barbas also created an energy ball, threatening to kill Stimple. Barbas later attacked Phoebe, but she dodged the energy ball, causing it to vanquish several Demons sitting at the table in Cole's penthouse. After regaining his powers, Cole used it to vanquish Barbas.
  • Astral Projection: Used by Barbas to astral project from Purgatory to Earth. Phoebe astral projected to Cole's penthouse, using a spell to do so.
  • Fading: Type of Teleportation used by Cole, Barbas (after he stole Cole's powers) and Stimple.
  • Power Absorption: After Cole drank Paige's Power-Stripping Potion, Barbas managed to absorb Cole's power, allowing him to return to Earth. Cole took back his powers after Paige orbed another Power-Stripping Potion into Barbas' mouth. 
  • Healing: Used by Leo to heal Cole and Paige (unseen).
  • Orbing: Type of Teleportation used by Leo and Paige.
  • Pyrokinesis: Used by Barbas (after absorbing Cole's powers) to vanquish a Demon.
  • Transformation: Used by Barbas to cover the house with bricks.
  • Molecular Combustion: Used by Piper, trying to get out of the Manor and to blow up Barbas. She later tried to blow him up again, but he was immune to it.
  • Shimmering: Type of Teleportation used by the Hellspawn Demon.
  • Fireball: Used by the Hellspawn Demon to attack Penny, Victor and Piper. Stimple threw a fireball at Barbas.
  • Reconstitution: Used by Barbas to reconstitute after Piper blew him up.
  • Molecular Immobilization: Piper tried to freeze Barbas, but he faded out before she could do so.
  • Telekinesis: Used by Barbas to deviate Stimple's fireball.
  • Energy Blast: Used by Barbas to knock everyone down in the attic.
  • Crushing: Used by Barbas to crush Piper's blasts.
  • Force Field: Used by Barbas to block Phoebe, Cole, Piper and Leo from reaching him.
  • Telekinetic Orbing: Used by Paige to orb the Power-Stripping Potion into Barbas's mouth.

Notes and Trivia[]

  • The WB title for this episode is The House of Fear.
  • This is Barbas' third appearance. This is also the first time that Paige meets Barbas. Barbas is also the second evil being that all four sisters have encountered. The first being Shax.
  • Paige dies for a second time.
  • This is the first time Barbas is vanquished, as he was banished in his previous appearances.
  • When Piper blames Paige for freeing Barbas, she mentions the demons Andras and Shax as being easier to defeat than him.
  • This is the second instance where the sisters use a spell to astral project, they later use this spell again in "Something Wicca This Way Goes...?". The first time a spell was used to astral project was in "Witch Way Now?", however, it was a different spell.
  • Phoebe reveals that she has overcome her previous fear of losing a sister, obviously a result of Prue's death in "All Hell Breaks Loose". Interestingly, it was also Prue's greatest fear when the sisters faced Barbas for the second time. Phoebe's biggest fear is now being evil.
  • At the time of this episode, Cole and Phoebe have the same fear, that they are evil.
  • It is revealed that Paige has claustrophobia (a fear of enclosed spaces). Rose McGowan has agoraphobia (a fear often triggered in open spaces).
  • Piper has arachnophobia (a fear of spiders). Piper is also afraid that her happiness will never last.
  • Piper's scream when she sees a spider causes Paige to mock "demons and warlocks you can handle but not spiders?". This line is a call back to "Trial by Magic" where Leo used the same line when Piper reacted in fear at the sight of a rat, and then Piper used it later on Paige when she got frightened by another rat.
  • This is the first time that Paige orbs a spilled potion onto a demon, just like Prue did in "Out of Sight" and "All Halliwell's Eve".
  • Paige is against her sisters giving Cole back his powers in this episode, stating it would, "probably be a death sentence". This foreshadows Cole's eventual suicidal behavior in "Y Tu Mummy Tambien".
  • When Phoebe astral projects into Cole's penthouse and sees demons sitting at the table, she states, "Whoa. Deja vu". This is a reference to when she was Queen of the Underworld in "Long Live the Queen".
  • This episode scored 4.8 million viewers.
  • This is the fourth episode with the word demon in the title.
  • Phoebe does not use either of her powers.

Cultural References[]

  • The title of the episode is probably a reference to the song Sympathy for the Devil, the opening track of the Rolling Stones' 1968 album, "Beggars Banquet".

Continuity Errors[]

  • Towards the end of the episode when Barbas returns to the manor and holds Leo, Cole, Phoebe, and Piper behind a shield, the manor no longer has bricks around it however, when the scene goes to Barbas saying, "You're no Prue," you can clearly see in the background that the small window on the wall behind him is still bricked over.
  • At the start of the episode when Phoebe and Miles are kissing and Piper comes in, Phoebe's hand is stretched out on the chair then in the next shot it is holding onto the bottle.


Episode Stills[]

Screen Caps[]

International Titles[]

  • French: La peur au ventre (Fear in the Belly/With fear in one's heart)
  • Czech: Pomoc pro démona (Help for the Demon)
  • Slovak: Súcit s démonom (Compassion with Demon)
  • Russian: Возвращение Барбаса [Vozvraščenie Barbasa] (Barbas' Return)
  • Spanish (Spain and Latin America): Simpatía por el demonio (Sympathy for the Demon)
  • Serbian: Simpatije Za Demona (Sympathy for the Demon)
  • German: Barbas
  • Italian: Il ritorno di Barbas (Barbas' Return)
  • Hungarian: Mentsük meg a démont (Save the Demon)
Previous Episode:
The Eyes Have It
Next Episode:
A Witch in Time
Episodes: Season 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8
Comics: 9 - 10