Before 11th century
Zankou was an ancient and extremely powerful upper-level demon who was feared, even by his own kind. Intelligent and ruthless, his understanding of the human nature made him able to manipulate and prey on the weaknesses of his enemies.
His greatest feats include the Crusades, the September Massacres, and the Black Plague. His abilities and ambition became so great that he eventually contested the Source of All Evil for control over the Underworld. However, the Source was able to imprison Zankou within a magical barrier deep within the Underworld.
Zankou formed one of the biggest threats ever to the Charmed Ones, but his reign of terror came to an end in 2005 with the destruction of the Nexus beneath the Halliwell Manor, which took him along with it.
Freed from Imprisonment
Zankou was released from his prison by a group of demons who believed he was the only one who could prevent the impending attack of the Avatars. Although several demons were opposed to his release, he was eventually released because he was their only hope. Reluctantly, several demons went to his prison and freed him. Zankou then revealed he was aware of everything that had happened in the world and proceeded to absorb the powers of a Shapeshifter. He then used this power to get close the Seer Kyra, who was planning on betraying the demons, and vanquished her for her betrayal.
Fight against the Avatars
Originally, Zankou helped the Charmed Ones in their fight with the Avatars along with Leo Wyatt and Kyle Brody, realizing that their Utopia threatened all of demonic existence. The sisters teamed up with Zankou after they realized the cost utopia was free will itself. They confronted the Avatars at their headquarters and forced them to revert Utopia.
Attempt to control the Nexus
After the Avatars retreated, Zankou set his sights on obtaining the Nexus. The first time was in Scry Hard, when he tried to get the sisters to cast a spell so that he could get the Nexus, but his attempt failed because the Nexus could not choose between the Power of Three and Zankou. Instead, it went to Leo. The second attempt was in Something Wicca This Way Goes...?, when he took over the Halliwell Manor, while the Charmed Ones were at Magic School, and took in the Nexus. However, the Charmed Ones were spying and used a spell to draw it out of him.
Stealing the Book of Shadows
Zankou began to mobilize the Underworld in hopes to control it. He attempted to steal the Book of Shadows on various occasions. He even hired a demonic alchemist to brainwash resurrected zombie innocents that the Charmed Ones were previously unable to save into attacking them.
Stealing Piper and Phoebe's Powers
After breaking through the protective barrier that the Book of Shadows wields due to weakening the sister's bond as well as their confidence in themselves and in their magic, Zankou retrieved the Book and created the potion To Separate a Witch from Her Powers in a diabolical plan to steal the Charmed Ones' powers. He then attacked the sisters in the Attic and distracted the girls by firing an energy ball at Piper Halliwell, who Paige and Phoebe then tended to. With their backs turned towards Zankou, he threw the potion at Phoebe and absorbed her power of Premonition. After the acquisition of this power, he was able to foresee the sisters going to seek help from the Vampire Queen and he got to her first. The power also enhanced his prescience and sensing abilities.
The sisters went to the Queen for assistance and she feigned being on the girls' side. Thinking the Queen was on their side, they then orbed to the Manor where Zankou was waiting for them; he told them he got to the Queen first. He attacked and threw the potion at Piper and absorbed her powers of Molecular Immobilization and Combustion. Zankou then used the Combustion power on Piper sending her flying backwards. With Piper and Phoebe's powers, he gained enough access to the Book's magic, and found a way to break through Magic School's defenses, where he planned to take Paige's powers. He threw the potion at her but it did not work, because she was in astral mode at the time. The three then disappeared, leaving him shocked and confused.
The Charmed Ones destroy Zankou
The Charmed Ones returned to their bodies and used what little time they had to take back the Book of Shadows. Zankou then confronted them at the Manor, where the sisters tricked him into absorbing the Nexus into his body and then cast the spell designed specifically to destroy it, thus destroying Zankou in the process.
Resurrection through Tyler Michaels
Five years after his vanquish, Zankou returned through Tyler Michaels, who came in contact with Heremus's blood and became a vessel for vanquished demons to return. Zankou attacked Benjamin Turner and Kyra, then attempted to attack the Charmed Ones to gain the power of the All. Prue then inserted her magic into him, overloading his body until he exploded, revealing a living Tyler.
Book of Shadows
Only this piece of the entry is known, the other part was never revealed and thus remains unknown. It can be assumed that the rest of the entry discusses Zankou's powers and great defeats throughout history.
- One of the
- most powerful Demons of
- the Underworld,
- Zankou is a threat
- to all that is good
- and feared even by his
- own kind. So great
- were his abilities
- and ambitions, he
- once contested
- The Source for
- control of the
The Sourcebook shows the entire entry.
- One of the most powerful Demons of the Underworld, Zankou is a threat to all that is good and feared even by his own kind. So great were his abilities and ambitions, he once contested The Source for control of the Underworld and was banished as punishment. After teaming with the Charmed Ones to defeat the Avatars, Zankou continued his evil ways and was vanquished when he united with the Spiritual Nexus located under the Halliwell Manor.
Spell to Release Zankou
The following incantation was used by an old wizard to release Zankou from his prison.
- Lexanero bestia!
Powers and Abilities
- Basic Powers
- Spell Casting: The ability to cast spells and perform rituals.
- Potion Making: The ability to brew potions.
- Active Powers
- Energy Balls: The ability to throw spheres of magical energy resembling electrical discharges.
- Fireballs: The ability to throw balls of fire, capable of vanquishing other beings.
- Flaming: The ability to teleport through intense flames.
- Apportation: The ability to transport an object or person across planes from place to place. Zankou has done this using both Flaming and Shimmering effects.
- Particle Swarm: The ability to fire a stream of burning orange and black particles from the hands in order to inflict pain on and eventually incinerate a victim.
- Power Absorption: The ability to absorb the powers of other beings. Zankou was able to take the powers of other beings by absorbing their essence completely.
- Resurrection: The ability to reanimate the dead. Zankou possessed the power to bring the deceased back as the undead. However, he needed an Alchemist to control them.
- Telekinesis: The ability to move objects and beings with the mind.
- Deviation: The ability to use a power to deflect magical energies and objects back in the direction they came from. Zankou used this to redirect potions being thrown at him, into the path of his minions instead.
- Force Blasts: The ability to unleash a blast of great concussive force. Zankou once used this ability on Leo Wyatt, blasting him against a wall.
- Molecular Immobilization: The ability to slow down molecules to the point where they move so slowly that objects and people appear completely motionless. Zankou once used this to freeze a demon as he shimmered into the Underworld while being vanquished.
- Portal Creation: The ability to create openings in space capable of sending people to other places, planes or worlds.
- Other Powers
- High Resistance: The ability to be highly resistant to physical and magical harm.
- Immortality: The ability to have an infinite lifespan and an arrested aging process.
- Prescience: The ability to observe the world and be aware of upcoming danger and events. Zankou possessed an advanced form of this awareness, allowing him to observe world events during his imprisonment and anticipate the actions of his enemies.
- Through spell, potion, power stealing, etc.
- Shapeshifting: The ability to alter one's physical shape into that of another person. Zankou stole this power from a demon shortly after he was released.
- Premonition: The ability to perceive future and past events. Zankou briefly possessed Phoebe's power with a potion to steal it.
- Molecular Immobilization: The ability to freeze molecules to make it seem like time has stopped. Zankou briefly possessed this power when he used a potion on Piper to take it from her.
- Molecular Combustion: The ability to speed up molecules to cause explosions. Zankou briefly took Piper's power with a potion.
- Portal Creation: The ability to open portals. Zankou briefly possessed this power when his spirit possessed Tyler Michaels.
- Pyrokinesis: The ability to manipulate fire. Zankou briefly possessed this power when his spirit possessed Tyler Michaels.
Notes and Trivia
- It's possible that Zankou rose to power by stealing the powers of other demons. This would justify why the Source viewed him as a threat, as he could grow strong enough to overthrow him.
- It is hinted in "Witchness Protection" that Zankou and the seer Kyra had a relationship.
- Zankou has successfully managed to gain control of Halliwell Manor and the Nexus, a feat only accomplished by the Woogyman and Cole Turner.
- Curiously, Zankou stole Phoebe's power of Premonition in order to predict the Charmed Ones' moves, while he was shown to possess this power already earlier in the season.
- He also stole Piper's power of Molecular Immobilization even though he already seem to have this power in "Extreme Makeover: World Edition".
- Zankou Chicken is a small, family-owned chain of Middle-Eastern fast casual restaurants within the Los Angeles area that is specialized in rotisserie chicken. In "Charmageddon", Phoebe makes a reference to the restaurant by saying to Zankou, "What's the matter Zankou, chicken?"
- In "Charmageddon", Zankou mentions Anubis. The jackal-headed god was also referenced in The Mummy Returns, which co-starred Oded Fehr.
- In the episode "Death Becomes Them", Zankou gets an Alchemist to use deceased former innocents to take away their confidence. Oded Fehr starred in the Resident Evil films (Apocalypse, Extinction, & Retribution) which also feature zombies.
- Zankou was featured in one non-canonical novel, Leo Rising. In this book, he joined forces with Dr. Gnivik and together created a Power Negating Serum that temporarily dampened the sisters' powers. He appeared at the end of the book, where he sent his demon goons after the Halliwells, including Leo, Chris and Wyatt, both of whom were summoned from the future by their father. Chris and Wyatt managed to defeat Zankou's followers, but they allowed Zankou to get away as he "still played a major role in the current timeline".
|The Zankou article has a Photo Gallery.|
Zankou appeared in a total of 7 episodes and 2 comic issues throughout the franchise.
|Charmed, Season 7|
|#01||"A Call to Arms"||#09||"There's Something About Leo"||#17||"Scry Hard"|
|#02||"The Bare Witch Project"||#10||"Witchness Protection"||#18||"Little Box of Horrors"|
|#03||"Cheaper by the Coven"||#11||"Ordinary Witches"||#19||"Freaky Phoebe"|
|#04||"Charrrmed!"||#12||"Extreme Makeover: World Edition"||#20||"Imaginary Fiends"|
|#05||"Styx Feet Under"||#13||"Charmageddon"||#21||"Death Becomes Them"|
|#06||"Once in a Blue Moon"||#14||"Carpe Demon"||#22||"Something Wicca This Way Goes...?"|
|#07||"Someone to Witch Over Me"||#15||"Show Ghouls"|
|#08||"Charmed Noir"||#16||"The Seven Year Witch"|
|Charmed, Season 10|
|#01||"No Country for Old Ones"||#08||"Love is a Burning Thing"||#15||"The Four Sisters, Part 2"|
|#02||"Magically Malicious"||#09||"Haste Makes Wasteland"||#16||"Happy Ending"|
|#03||"The Perks of Being a Whitelighter"||#10||"The Curious Case of Benjamin Turner"||#17||"Effigy"|
|#04||"Charmed Assault"||#11||"Fear Always Comes Back"||#18||"Tribunal and Tribulations"|
|#05||"Whatever Happened to the Demon with a Soul?"||#12||"Virtue"||#19||"Something Old, Something Prue"|
|#06||"Will o' the Witch"||#13||"Court of Love"||#20||"The Reason"|
|#07||"Hard Knox Life"||#14||"The Four Sisters, Part 1"|