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Serving as Charmed One Piper Halliwell's first active power, Molecular Immobilization is the magical ability to slow down the molecules of any living being or object to a point that they appear frozen. This power is triggered raising 1 or both hands and pointing out all fingers at the same time. Piper inherited this magical gift from her great, great, great, great, great grandmother, Melinda Warren, as well as from her mother, Patty Halliwell, who were born with the ability.

Although the power was always referred to as Freezing by the Charmed Ones, Leo Wyatt explained the power works on a molecular level slowing particles down[1], for this reason, some refer to the power of Molecular Immobilization.


Linked to emotion, the power to freeze objects and beings is activated when the magical being possessing the power panics or becomes fearful. If the magical being's emotions become scattered, it can cause momentary loss of control of the power.

Range of Use[]

When first acquired, the power is limited only to the location to which the witch or magical being is present, upon exit of the location, the freeze comes undone, allowing people and object to move freely again. However, after gaining control and experience with the power, the being can extend both the length of time a freeze lasts and can control it so a location stays frozen when the being exits.

Piper Halliwell Discovers the Power[]


Although Piper displayed the power as a young girl, her grandmother, Penny Halliwell bound Piper and her sisters' powers but when she died they were unbound and then activated when Phoebe Halliwell recited a spell from the Book of Shadows known as the Dominus Trinus.

While Piper was preparing a special recipe for her boss, Chef Moore at Quake, she forgot to add a marinate to it and when she told Chef Moore to wait a minute, she raised her hands and he froze. Although she was shocked, she reached over for a liquid dropper and placed some of the marinate on the piece of food. The chef then unfroze and he ate it, extremely impressed by it's taste.

First Use on an Evil Being[]

When Piper's boyfriend, Jeremy Burns, who was actually a warlock took her to an abandoned warehouse, they went into a elevator where he tried to attack her. However, she raised up her hands in fear, causing Jeremy to freeze. She then tried to get out of the elevator but when she did, Jeremy unfroze but she managed to reach for a wooden board and knocked the warlock over the head with it. She then escaped to Halliwell Manor, where she and her sisters were able to vanquish the warlock.

Piper's Fear of the Power[]

Initially after realizing she had the power, Piper grew fearful of it, knowing that it was triggered by fear and panic. Because she viewed herself as a jumpy person who was easily shaken by things, she thought she might accidently freeze a person or object, exposing herself as a witch, however, over time she became more controlled with the power.

Piper's Limitations[]

When she acquired the power, Piper discovered that she was unable to freeze her sisters and other Good Witches, ghosts and spirits, and extremely powerful evil beings. Eventually however, as she grew experienced with the power, she could freeze almost anyone and anything she pleased.

Personal Uses[]

As revealed by Piper to her sisters, while she would make love to Leo Wyatt she would freeze him occasionally.[2]

Selective Freezing[]


Developed by Piper Halliwell two years after aquiring the power, Selective Freezing allowed the witch to pick and choose which beings or objects she wanted to freeze.[3] She first displayed the ability when a Demonic Bounty Hunter known as Krell, intercepted a summoning spell and appeared in Halliwell Manor. When her sister, Prue used her Telekinetic power to blast Krell back, Piper froze him, not wanting him to destroy their grandfather clock. Prue then asked if she could just unfreeze Krell's head so they could ask who sent him, and she was able to do some. He remained frozen in mid-air as his head unfroze.

Piper also discovered that she could selectively freeze either innocents or evil beings in a room, by focusing on freezing only the demons or only the innocents.[4]

Advanced Molecular Immobilization[]


When Prue and Piper visited the future of 2009, they had discovered that Piper's power had advanced dramatically. She was able to freeze an entire city block, including the birds high up in the air. Instead of a small group of people and objects, Piper was now able to freeze "everything".

  • If Piper's powers had not been bound as a child, and she had continued using the power while growing up, it is possible that by the time she was an adult, she would have advanced to this level much sooner.

Piper Masters Her Power[]

In her eighth year as a Charmed One, Piper was able to freeze powerful demons such as the Triad (who were usually extremely resistant to such inhibitory molecular powers) and other magical beings that she initially was unable to freeze, including good witches.

Evolution Into Molecular Combustion[]

In 2001, Piper developed a new power that allowed her to speed up molecules to the point of combustion, causing an explosion. This power is most commonly known as Molecular Combustion, though the Charmed Ones usually refer to it as "Blasting" or "Blowing Up". This power shares the same trigger and method of usage as Piper's power of molecular immobilization. It is an extremely rare power, as well as the strongest offensive power possessed by the Charmed Ones.

Priscilla Baxter (Piper's Past Life)[]

When Phoebe travelled to 1924 in order to prevent her death, she discovered that her maternal great-grandmother, Priscilla Baxter (who was also the past incarnation of her older sister Piper) had the power to slow down the molecules of an individual or object, making it appear as if time had been slowed down and the target had been put into slow motion. It is therefore plausible that Piper's power of molecular immobilization is actually an advancement of her past life's power to slow time down.

This theory could be backed by Leo's explanation of why Phoebe did not have the same power as her past incarnation did: if a witch abuses her personal powers, they would regress, and she would cease to possess them in her future incarnations. The reverse may be true for Piper's powers: as Priscilla used her gift of slowing time properly, she was rewarded in her future incarnation by her power evolving into molecular immobilization.

See Also[]


  1. Season 3, Exit Strategy
  2. Season 3, Blinded by the Whitelighter
  3. Season 3, Sleuthing With the Enermy
  4. Season 5, Lucky Charmed