GUEST STARS, CAST & CREDITS
TV GUIDE PROMO
AIRING AND RATING INFORMATION
COMMENTARY 1 by Beth Gaynor
COMMENTARY 2 by Carmen Carter
COMMENTARY 3 by KSZoneW
WHIMPERS, MURMURS, AND A LOVE GONE TOO FAR
EDITS/CUTS DONE ON USA & SCI-FI CHANNELS
THINGS TO LOOK OUT FOR
MORE THINGS TO LOOK OUT FOR
Meighan Desmond (Discord)
Karl Urban (Julius Caesar)
Catherine Boniface (Meridian)
Anthony Ray Parker (The Deliverer)
Anton Bentley (Centurion)
Patrick Kuhtze (Brit Guard)
David Holton (Lieutenant)
John Manning (Captain)
Brad Homan (Jiela)
Daniel Martin (Soldier)
Andre Coppell (Squad Leader)
Written by Steven L. Sears
Edited by Robert Field
Directed by Oley Sassone
XENA'S GREATEST ENEMY RETURNS
Caesar: Divide and conquer!
Xena: Caesar wants that one great battle that will make him part of history and we are going to give it to him
XENA'S GIVEN ONE CHANCE FOR REVENGE
Ares: Lead your army to victory and make me proud
BUT CAESAR'S HOLDING ALL THE CARDS
Caesar: You're a friend of Xena's [To Gabrielle]
Boadicea: You go up there, they will die.
BATTLE ON, XENA!
TV GUIDE PROMO
Xena, Gabrielle and the first priest of a monotheistic cult head for Britannia to battle their common enemy Caesar -- who promptly captures Gabrielle.
Xena and her former enemy Boadicea join forces to battle Caesar; Gabrielle must fight for her own life against evil spirit worshippers.
As Xena confronts Caesar in Britannia, Gabrielle uncovers disturbing secrets about a mysterious cult that is battling the Romans.
Xena and Gabrielle battle Caesar and evil spirits and witness the creation of Stonehenge.
TAKING a plunge into the mists of ancient British history this week, Xena joins Boadicea in a battle against the armies of Caesar in northern Gaul. Xena also gets embroiled with the blood-thirsty followers of Dahak. A woman's work is never done. Evening Herald
AIRING AND RATING INFORMATION
1st RELEASE: 10-20-97
An AA average of 6.0
Competition from Syndicated Action Dramas:
(1) X-FILES ranked 4th with 7.9
(2) XENA ranked 9th with 6.0
(3) HERCULES ranked 10th with 5.6 ("Web of Desire" 63/404)
(4) WALKER: TEXAS RANGER ranked 13th with 5.3
(5) STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE ranked 16th with 5.1 ("Behind the Lines" 128/604)
(6) EARTH: FINAL CONFLICT ranked unknown with 4.2 ("Truth" 02/102)
2nd RELEASE: 03/16/98
An AA average of 5.0
Competition from Syndicated Action Dramas:
(1) X-FILES 8th with 5.6
(2) XENA/HERCULES 10th with 5.0
(3) STAR TREK DS9 14th with 4.6
(4) WALKER 19th with 3.9
This synopsis is by Bluesong.
The show opens with Ares and Discord discussing a monotheistic temple. Ares tells Discord he is handling it.
Xena and Gabrielle walk along talking. They pass some Roman soldiers with prisoners. One of them mentions Caesar's name, and Xena frees the prisoners. One of the prisoners is called Khrafstar, First Priest of the Temple of One God. Caesar has captured this temple in Brittania. Khrafstar has been hiring mercenaries to help him recapture the temple. He is being assisted by a warrior woman named Boadicea, who dislikes Ceasar too.
Xena decides to join the man. Before boarding a boat, Ares appears to Xena and tells her the temple should be destroyed. On the boat, Khrafstar tells Gabrielle about his god, talking of love, friendship, and bringing his kingdom to earth. When they they reach Brittania, they join up quickly with Boadicea and have a very good fight with the Romans guarding the beaches. During the fight, though, Gabrielle and Khrafstar are captured and taken to Caesar.
Boadicea and Xena talk strategy and then Xena realizes Gabrielle is missing. Boadicea had told her Gabrielle was OK even though she knew differently. Xena draws her sword on Boadicea. Gabrielle meets Caesar, who decides she should be hung on a cross. During the evening Gabrielle and Khrafstar talk more about faith and the concept of one god. Then they are taken out the next morning and placed on crosses. Caesar had ordered Gabrielle's legs be broken (it will mean something to Xena). Xena suddenly pops out of hiding and saves Gabrielle and Khrafstar. Xena defiantly tears Caesar's flag into pieces, and Caesar, who has been watching some distance away, picks up a javelin and hurls it at Xena. She throws her chakram at it; it splinters and a large piece of wood goes into Caesar's hand.
Xena and Boadicea determine their next move. They want to split Caesar's army, so they attack his strongholds. They start with the temple, and recover that. Xena goes on to the next battle, leaving Gabrielle with Khrafstar at the temple. Ares appears to Xena and asks her to destroy the temple. Xena wants to know why Ares fears this god. Ares says Xena must trust him and destroy it. "We're not evil. This god is," Ares says. Xena walks away.
Khrafstar and the other worshippers want to rededicate the temple. A woman tells Khrafstar that the ceremony has changed some since he left, so she leads the prayer. Suddenly she says there must be a blood sacrifice, a sacrifice of an innocent, to the dark one, called Dahak. They grab Khrafstar and tie him to a flat stone altar; Gabrielle is held back.
As the woman prepares to stab Khrafstar, Gabrielle jerks free, rushes up, and pushes her away. She takes a knife and cuts the rope holding Khrafstar. The woman returns with a sword. Gabrielle turns and stabs the woman in the stomach, killing her. Blood covers her hands. Khrafstar takes the knife from Gabrielle and thanks her for helping to bring Dahak into the world. Dahak wanted her "purity and innocence of evil." By killing, she just gave that to this evil god. Gabrielle screams.
Xena stands with Boadicea at the battle site. Legions of Romans are before her. She is ready to ride off to find Caesar, to kill him herself. Then she sees dark black clouds over the temple. "That's where Gabrielle is!" Xena says, and rides off. She reaches the temple; it is empty. A dead woman lies on the altar. Then Xena hears Gabrielle sobbing in a corner, finds her, pulls her close. Xena asks what happened, and Gabrielle says she killed the woman. Xena cannot believe it. Then Khrafstar walks in and Gabrielle pulls away from Xena, almost into a fetal position. Xena draws her sword. "What have you done to her, you bastard?" she growls. Khrafstar tells Xena that Gabrielle is for Dahak, the one god. Xena realizes this is not the one god of the Israelittes. Then Khrafstar thanks Xena for bringing Gabrielle to them. "Your hatred brought you here," he says.
Khrafstar and Xena fight. Khrafstar has god-like powers and flings Xena away. Suddenly the altar bursts into flames, and the flames chase Gabrielle. They come alive and pull Gabrielle into the air, hoisting her above the altar. She is engulfed in flames. Khrafstar changes into a devil-like being, and calls himself The Deliverer. He and Xena fight, and Xena isn't winning. Xena keeps trying to get to Gabrielle as she hangs suspended in the air, flames all over her body. Finally Xena wounds Khrafstar and changes tactics. "You half-witted toady to a third-rate god, come and get me," she says. She taunts him and then when he attacks her, she throws him into the flames that are beneath Gabrielle. She dives and catches Gabrielle as she falls. They have no time for anything else; the temple explodes.
Xena and Gabrielle sit among the rocks, with Xena holding Gabrielle. Gabrielle tells Xena that "it hurts inside." Then she says "everything's changed. Everything."
The show closes with a shot of the remaining rubble, which is Stonehenge.
This commentary is by Beth Gaynor.
Where Morpheus failed in DREAMWORKER (#03), some unknown rookie of a god named Dahak succeeds. This isn't just the end of Gabrielle's blood innocence, it's the end of most of her innocence about people, too. She usually has a way of reading folks, of spotting their best qualities and bringing them out (or just avoiding the heck out of the ones who have no good points to be found). But these priests played her like a lyre, especially Khrafstar, the head priest, and Gabrielle never had a clue. Before now, she could always rely on her instincts to trust people, and in the long run, the loss of that may be more devastating than the fact that she's now taken a life.
Speaking of being played like a lyre, so were all of us by this episode - in some very nice story-telling strokes. The story is set up as being about Xena's pell-mell quest to find Boadicea and wreak her vengeance on Caesar at last. Gabrielle's shove into the background, and taking up with the happy-go-lightly priests, meanders in the background as a side story. Until the moment she's taken to that altar. Suddenly, the tables are completely turned, and what we thought was a background tale becomes the focus of the episode and a crux of two seasons of character development. Boadicea and Caesar are dropped like hot potatoes, and in spite of what a great tale they had been, they suddenly pale in comparison. Excellent, excellent work by Steven Sears!
I just love being played by a good story. Throw around a few "one god" phrases and talk of happy love lights, and we think "Oh, Judeo-Christian followers. Like ALTARED STATES, like ROYAL COUPLE OF THIEVES, like GIANT KILLER. Seen it. Know where we're going." The story uses our assumptions the same way the Dahak followers used Gabrielle and Xena's. Xena's just one of us when she finally realizes "This is NOT the one god of the Israelites!"
And speaking of which, for once, Ares was on the level! Wow, whaddya know? Ares' assignment for this episode is to read the tale about a boy who cried wolf.
For all the usual Xenaverse historical liberties, that was some perfect portrayals of Roman fighting tactics. Got a problem? Make like a turtle and box up!
Just as heart-rending as the pain Gabrielle will be going through in the episodes to come is going to be Xena's guilt. That Deliverer guy was dead-on when he skewered Xena and told her that this was all her fault. Xena peremptorily declared that she was going to fight Caesar, brought Gabrielle along for the ride, and shoved her to the back of the line with barely a glance, and no attention to Khrafstar other than a glare or two (she didn't even remember his name in the camp). Even after Gabrielle had been put on the cross, Xena barely took the time to get her down and check that she was OK before going back to taunting Caesar. The bard even tries to apologize for getting captured (yeesh!) and Xena brushes it off with a grilling about what Caesar was up to. Xena is now living IS THERE A DOCTOR IN THE HOUSE all over again, when she was scared that her pride had killed Gabrielle. This time, it put Gabrielle through crucifixion, murder, torture, and betrayal. Ouch. Xena will not be letting herself live this down for quite some time.
One moment in Xena's defense: once she saw the trouble at the temple, we didn't see her hesitate for a moment. Caesar was finally forgotten, and Gabrielle became priority #1 again. Better late than never.
I have mixed feelings about Boadicea. I'm a Celt-phile, so I was sorry to see her story end up getting short shrift and the Celts get represented by nothing more interesting than some weird - and varying - accents and some tartans and tattoos. But even given that, Boadicea was one bodacious character. Her chariot ride and droll "your sword needs polishing" was one of the best entrances I've seen on the show. Fantastic outfit, great wild "Irish" mane of hair, and watch that woman kick b*tt side-by-side with the Warrior Princess! And her attitude toward Xena was brutally competent - no friendship, no "it's all right in the end" smarminess, but a simple willingness to put aside her own anger and vengeance to allow what was needed for her people. A bit of a contrast to what Xena does.
Weakest moment and line in the episode: Xena's taunting of the Deliverer-dude and his "You can't talk to Dahak like that!" response. A bit too cheesy and way too flip, especially with Gabrielle still dangling by fire above an evil god's altar.
Gabrielle's words at the end of the episode, "Everything's changed... everything" are exact duplicates of what Xena told her waaayyy back in DREAMWORKER.
Xena: "And the moment you kill..."
Gabrielle: "The moment you kill... what?"
Xena: "Everything changes. Everything."
This commentary is by Carmen Carter.
If you accept the basic series premise that Xena and Gabrielle routinely stroll through temporal rifts that shift them in time and space, then you won't have any problem with our dynamic duo casually journeying to Gaul and Britannia. This distortion of chronology and geography bothers some people, but it doesn't even make me blink anymore. Although, I have to admit that I would have loved a more leisurely set-up, one in which Xena and Gabrielle spent a few episodes working their way northward from Greece. Seems a lost opportunity for some change of scenery and a few exotic plot devices.
These quibbles aside, THE DELIVERER offers a solid, intriguing beginning to a longer dramatic story arc. In typical fashion, Stephen Sears crafted a script in which the action/adventure plot is driven by character dynamics, and in which powerful themes of guilt, revenge and blood innocence play a central role. Less typical, however, is the broad canvas that he used for this particular morality play. The epic scope created -- for me -- a sense of detachment and distance from the characters...which was just as well given that Gabrielle was turned into mincemeat (finely ground) by the final scene...and Xena was looking a bit pale and wan, too. Without some distance, the traumatic events of THE DELIVERER would have been overwhelming.
The dynamic Boadicea was a wonderful character in her own right, easily one of my favorite women (and actors) in the series. In terms of the plot, she personifies Xena's guilt; and the opportunity to help the woman she once betrayed offers an all too convenient excuse for the warrior princess to give in to her darker impulses. As others have mentioned, Caesar is more of a straw dog than a real villain in this episode. His purpose is to fuel Xena's thirst for revenge and make her easier prey than usual for the machinations of Ares. Giving in to temptation, Xena carries Gabrielle into danger and is too distracted to notice what is happening to her companion. The result is an incredible tragedy.
How can we destroy thee...let me count the ways. In an amazingly short amount of time Gabrielle is: crucified, lured into the clutches of a cult, betrayed, tricked into losing her blood innocence, and then violently raped. In other words, almost everything that has formed her character -- trust, innocence, purity, and a sanctity from harm -- was shredded into little itsy bitsy pieces and then ground into dust. However, unlike RETURN OF CALLISTO -- where Gabrielle's actions seemed capricious and wildly out of character, thus undermining the impact of the consequences -- everything that happened to Gabrielle in THE DELIVERER arose naturally and inexorably from who she is...or was.
More than most episodes, the impact of these events also hinges on what will happen in later episodes. The extent to which Gabrielle is permanently changed by her trauma will determine the ultimate power of what we have seen.
Unfortunately, the lack of resolution in a major plot thread weakened this episode needlessly. Since there wasn't a "To be continued..." tag, the episode presumably stands on its own. Yet, if that's the case, one has to wonder just what the heck happened in the battle between Boadicea and Caesar, and whether the outcome of that conflict was affected by Xena's hasty departure to rescue Gabrielle from the temple. If this detail is dealt with in GABRIELLE'S HOPE, then an overt tie between the two episodes would signal viewers to suspend their annoyance.
On the other hand, given the importance of the character-driven narrative, this episode was blessed with solid performances from the supporting actors, who made the most of their brief appearances. And Renee O'Connor was outstanding in the crucial closing scenes in which Gabrielle undergoes her deconstruction.
Like the best of XWP episodes, THE DELIVERER offers more food for thought and discussion than can be encompassed in a single post. I'm still pondering my reactions to Gabrielle losing her blood innocence, not to mention being raped. I won't even try to broach those topics until I've seen the episode at least one more time.
We all have our individual and highly personal reasons for watching and enjoying XWP. For me, one the strongest attractions has been that the series presented stories about women that I had rarely heard before. Xena -- as the guilt-ridden hero -- wrestles with moral and ethical dilemmas that have usually been reserved for men in our culture's literature. And Gabrielle embarked on a coming-of-age adventure story that is common for men but quite rare for women to experience.
And it's for those reasons that I was disappointed by certain creative decisions in the story arc launched by THE DELIVERER. Having Gabrielle fall prey to rape, even by a god, is a story I've heard before: woman as sexual victim. In fact, I've heard it all my life. It's no news to any woman that the possibility of being raped is a harsh reality of our existence. It's a situation that we face every day. What was *new* about XWP was seeing two women who were adventurers, explorers, heroes -- whose lives where NOT circumscribed by that particular fear. Watching Xena's chakram defy gravity is fun, but watching Gabrielle defy the social conventions that have repressed women lifted this show beyond breezy fantasy. Instead, it approached a cultural revolution.
And now that unique and entrancing world where women were free from the constant reminders of their gender has been shattered. It's business as usual in the Xenaverse -- women who step too far out line, who leave the safety of their home, face the danger of being raped. Being killed is a danger everyone faces, but being raped is a danger that has extremely strong associations with being female. Yes, men are sometimes raped, too, but the fear of rape is not one which dominates their lives. And they don't face the same consequences...such as unwanted pregnancy. That is a situation that only women have to deal with, and with the advent of Gabrielle's baby we are back to the familiar and depressing stories that have dominated women's lives throughout history.
I especially regret that the rape/pregnancy scenario overshadowed the issue of Gabrielle's loss of blood innocence. For over two years XWP has developed the importance of Gabrielle's refusal to shed blood. This was a truly marvelous gender-neutral issue. Gabrielle's dedication to pacifism was a fascinating aspect of her character, and involved a choice fraught with contradictions and peril, given her decision to travel with a warrior. Unfortunately, in THE DELIVERER Gabrielle's traumatic loss of blood innocence simply served as a plot device to introduce her rape and pregnancy. Thus the unique gave way to the conventional.
Although I felt the scripting of Gabrielle's rape was dramatically solid, it was not a storyline that I welcomed. Not because it was emotionally shattering, not because it was too dark, but because it was too easy and too familiar. I know this story, and it's really irrelevant to me whether Gabrielle is destroyed by her experience or emerges a stronger and better person by the end. All those scenarios for women, all those endings, have been explored over and over and over again in our cultural literature. I'm not interested in watching Gabrielle deal with the problems that come from having a womb when I could be watching her struggle with other issues on less traditional battlefields.
There is still much to appreciate in X:WP -- good writing, good acting, good production values -- and I'm not bowing out of the audience over one episode. But the truly unique and novel twist that first sparked my interest XWP is now gone. The show still features rifts in time and space, gravity defying leaps and bounds, and peevish gods and goddesses, but Gabrielle has been dragged out of that fantasy paradise and into the mundane, unforgiving world of reality. And that's a damn shame.
This commentary is by KSZoneW.
It made fans angry and sad. Some felt ticked because of the way Gabrielle killed. Some hated the fact that Caesar and Xena never fought. Personally, I loved this episode. THE DELIVERER combined an adventure with personal madness and the dawning of a new era in the ancient world of myth and gods and heros. Dahak's rise to power will not only kill Zeus and Hera at some time but may bring enemys such as Xena and Ares and even Hercules and Hera together to fight off new cults and gods who are born into the world that now belongs with Hera [Zeus is like always with some other conquest instead of taking control] and other gods such as Athena, Ares, and Hephaestus. The main theme was Caesar and Xena fighting it out and that's all the promo showed which made the killing and Dahak a surprise for many fans getting up in the morning and watching the episode on there satellite dish. That was a plus about the episode.
Who was the Deliverer? Was it the Minotaur/Goat like creature who fought Xena to make sure Dahak had time to plant his child in Gabrielle? Was it Boadicea, because her job was to deliver Britan from Caesar? Was it Khrafstar and his evil plans to bring Dahak to deliver a new reign of terror to Greece and the world? Was it even someone we did not see such as Christ, whose coming would send the other below and protect the good people? That makes a question in itself. I think the Deliverer is anybody in the episode who is successful in completing there plan which would make Dahak the one since he completed his work on creating a evil in Gabrielle and also knew that the baby being evil would make Xena want to kill it and Gabrielle wanting to save it, which in turn would start a rift between the two and allow there hate to give him the possible space to take down the Greek gods and reign his terror over the world and possibly even kill Hercules, leaving few immortal heroes or half mortal heroes a live.
The fight between Caesar and Xena must be put on hold for a future episode. It's possible that it was cut out since during a promo for The New Season of Xena on WGN, they showed Xena kicking Caesar down and than Caesar giving a cocky look which was not the same as the one in the actual episode, where a piece of the javlin handle rips into Caesar's skin. That remains a mystery but hopefully someone at Whoosh will know or Ill look for more or ask around. I was upset they did not have a war between Caesar and Boadicea or Xena but it allows another episode to take place or even a Hercules encounter with Caesar or possibly a crossover episode or even Caesar's takeover of Greece to fufil Dahak's possible wish of conquering new lands. The fight will be intense and possibly the most watched in the entire series. Boadicea was played by a great actress in Jennifer Ward-Lealand, who looked very diffrent than when she played a attractive gambling palace owner in HTLJ episode "All That Glitters" during HTLJ's second season.
Ares was reduced to a smaller roll and was trying to help Xena or was he? It's possible that his wanting Xena to destroy to temple was because he thought she would die doing it? Why would he want to kill someone he kind of has the hots for? Why not send the brother he hates [Hercules] and have him face death from an immortal foe that may be able to kill half gods? Probally because if Ares wanted Xena to die, he could bring her back to life under his rules and ways. Meaning he would use her for his own good meaning he did not care. If Xena did crash the temple and Gabby did not get planted with evil, Ares wins because Dahak's chance or hurting him and Olympus would die down for a while, or at least untill another temple was born. But could other temples exsist in other lands or other worlds? Possibly he could not win either way.
Gabrielles loosing of her goodness to not kill was done well. Gabrielle's character was being a saint to those who where good and she felt that Khrafstar was all good and someone who would bring evil gods and demons down. She trusted him and had a bond of trust and friendship. He was going to possibly fufill her destiny to do good but Meridian and her cronies made a plan to have Gabrielle fall into there trap. Gabrielle was forced to protect some innocent and good to her by fighting Meridian. She stabbed the demon lady in a fight and did so to save someone who could bring good to the world by killing its evil. But evil won when Khrafstar declared the truth that this was a plan to get Gabrielle to kill and give her innocence to Dahak. Gabrielle killed because evil would of replaced good but it ended up being wrong because good was replaced by evil which made it hard on Gabrielle amd Xena. Xena's fight with Khrafstar and her fight with the monster like Deliverer was VERY intense in my opinion. Xena was p*ss*d because Khrafstar used Gabrielle and forced her to kill. She proved she cared more about Gabrielle than killing Caesar and proved she knew Boadicea could handle the Romans, which was something Xena might of thought was impossible when she saw Boadicea was torn between her lost husband and a war to save Britain.
I have this episode a 5 out of 5 stars rating. It was shocking and people talked about it more than many other important episodes. This one is for any age except for under 10 which might get scared of the fire and Deliverer monster. It was intense and really turned out to be a adventure episode with a dark theme and ending.
WHIMPERS, MURMURS, AND A LOVE GONE TOO FAR:
03-06-00. Steve Sears, a former co-executive producer of XENA, appeared on the NetForum on or around February 2, 2000, under his Tyldus rubric, and shared the following:Now, I will definitely answer your question. The question was whether the Dahak scene was considered a "rape" scene during its inception. I can't speak for the actors on the set or the director once he was on the set, but in the writing strage, no one thought of it that way. It wasn't until the rumor hit that we looked at it again to see if it could be read that way. And, by the way, so all will know, not everyone at RenPic agreed with my opinion either.
02-07-00. Steve Sears, a former co-executive producer of XENA, appeared on the NetForum on or around January 31, 2000, under his Tyldus Rubrick, and shared the following:[Statement which he was responding to] I presume you mean with regard to the fan reaction, in that because you didn't change your stories to fit what fans wanted you caught flack, yes?
Partly. Also because I would state an opinion or a reason and it was unacceptable to people. The whole Dahak/Gabrielle thing is a good example (not dodging that one, am I?) When the rumor came out before the episode, I told people to wait and see. Don't make up their minds before they saw it. The reason for this was that the information wasn't completely correct and because I had my own opinion about the word "rape". After it aired, I stated that opinion. I said I could not equate the mystical impregnation by a godly being while supported on a pillar a fire to a the forceful, violent, penetration and beating of another person at the hands of an all too mortal and real person. Not once have I deviate from that opinion. But because I refused to change my mind on that, people have decided I was avoiding the issue or "obfuscating" (a popular X-File term). If your opinion differs, so be it. Mine hasn't changed. If I had written a rape scene the way I just described it, I certainly wouldn't hide behind words, I wouldn't need to. And I wasn't this time. However, some have used it as a flash point of hatred. Misquoting me and taking things out of context to make their points. Another time was when I said that Xena and Gabrielle hadn't had sex. I said that because no one had seen it, it was never a part of the "mythos" of the series and was never implied, except by associative subtext (boy, does that sound obfuscated!) But it was my later comment that you don't define love by a sexual act that seemed to draw the most fire. I guess I was raised differently, but that's always been my feeling. And, even better, it left it all open to interpretation. But many thought I was stating the latter to make up for the former. Not true. Anyway, it's that kind of stuff I was alluding to.
12-22-98. From the WHOOSH interview with XWP Script Co-ordinator Maggie Hickerson (02/98): "That was one thing in the episode where she went to England and she produced the toy from the SOLSTICE CAROL episode. I remember asking how can she produce this toy, we have to show her with a bag or something to carry it in. So they went back to the first episode where they were getting on the boat to go to England and we wrote in she had to have a bag with her but that scene had already been shot. So she did suddenly come up with this toy."
12-21-98. From R.J. Stewart's (the executive producer of XWP) RealHollywood 12-15-98 chat:
Truthseeker asks "The Dahak episodes of both Xena and Hercules are among my favorites. How did the idea of Dahak come up and can you give us any hints of any future plans for Dahak?"
R.J.Stewart says "Okay. Um .... That whole storyline of G's baby etc. etc. .... G's hope .. is something that Rob and I beat out in this room a few years ago in the broadest sense .. the basic direction of where we wanted to go. We asked Steve Sears to come up with the setup for that particular thing .. how is G impregnated with Hope. And, then he started researching Zaroastrianism [sic]. And, it would be a question probably addressed to Steve .. but that was the framework in which he came up with it."
01-31-98. Liz Friedman at the Burbank II Con (01-18-98) addressed the "Was Gabrielle raped or not" issue by taking a stand that Gabrielle was not raped. Her reasoning was that Dahak was a force that impreganted Gabrielle, not a man. There was no man who got on top of her and there was no sexualized violence. The theme of the episode apparently was that evil can enter the world only through the corruption of good. This whole "Was it rape or not" debate has some interesting sociological and emotional aspects which unfortunately I do not have the time to ponder right now. I am hoping that XMR when it gets to the initial leak from Marilyn Beck's column to analyze what is going on. On one level of course, rape does not require a man on top and nor sexualized violence (violence or threat of violence is usually adequate). An important threshold issue of the characterization of how Gabrielle got pregnant (does consent enter into it? How does analogy and metaphor affect it? ) is whether there was adequate ambiguity in the scene where someone could reasonably convince themselves that a rape did or did not happen. Until this is analyzed the heck out of, I doubt we will do much more than fraction off into "Yeah, it's rape", "No, it's not", and "Maybe it is, maybe not" camps.
01-30-98. From an upcoming WHOOSH interview with Maggie Hickerson, Script coordinator of XWP (tentatively March 1998): "HICKERSON: ... Another time when the script had the characters going to England and they were near Stonehenge Steve Sears had them camped on the hills around Stonehenge'. I kept telling him that Stonehenge is on Salisbury Plain and it's just that, a plain with no hills. He said that at the end it didn't have to *be* Stonehenge just look *like* Stonehenge."
10-26-97. Karl Urban at WarriorCon (09/13/97) said that he was in negoitations to bring back Caesar after THE DELIVERER. Let's hope those talks were ended with them writing Caesar back in. It would give them a chance to finish this storyline in THE DELIVERER which was so rudely halted when three quarters of the way through the show they decided it wasn't about the big guy after all! And maybe also they can get Caesar to use the word sensibility properly!!!
10-19-97. Looks like where Morpheus failed, Dahak hits pay dirt! And now we know DEFINITIVELY where Stonehenge came from...
10-13-97. Promotion shots show Gabrielle crucified.
10-06-97. SFX (issue unknown) reported that "Gabrielle returns to her Amazon sisters after being forced to kill in self-defense - and giving birth to a demon child!" Well, we know she gives birth in Gabrielle's Hope and that she is impregnated in The Deliverer. The $10,000 question is where does she find the time to off someone? Is it in Deliverer as well? It must be! Unless she gets impregnanted and then on the way to deliver she nails someone!
At last! We kick off the beginning of a lot of stuff...rumor has it that this might be the beginning of (1) the rift, (2) Gabrielle's child storyline, and (3) the path of Gabrielle's loss of blood innocence. Heck! YOU NAME IT! It looks like they are packing everything INCLUDING the kitchen sink into this storyline. The thrust of the narrative is supposed to happen over three episodes which everyone has been assuming will be three consequtive shows (but those Renaissance Pictures people are tricky), but the effects of the events in the trilogy will be felt over six episodes. Very enigmatic, eh?
Here it is!!! The 50th episode of XWP!!! The 100th will be in the middle of the fifth season. So, until then, let's party hardy.
Reported in a magazine: Xena goes up against Caesar in another brutal confrontation.
If this is, INDEED, the beginning of the "Rift" trilogy, then we have been warned that the first episode takes it time to get to its point, whereas the concluding two episodes are mega-intense roller coaster rides.
Xena is in Celtic Britain and she's still mad ten years later at Caesar, Julius Caesar for toying with her affections. Rumor has it that this may be the start of the Rift trilogy, but I am not personally convinced of it yet. You can never go wrong with Xena and Stonehenge, though. This might be THE episode to die for!
Another rumor says that Gabrielle is an acting Amazon Queen in this one. I haven't been able to find any type of confirmation for that, but if it is true: Woo-weee!
Highlights by Beth Gaynor.
The acting work from both Lucy Lawless and Renee O'Connor from the moment Gabrielle stabs the priestess-wench until the fireworks start at the altar are just astounding. Watch Gabrielle's reaction as she begins to fully understand what she's just done and how well she's been played. Watch the size of Xena's eyes as Gabrielle tells her that she killed the woman on the altar. Anyone want to help me create a "Give the Emmy Nominators a Clue" fund?
EDITS/CUTS ON THE USA/SCI-FI CHANNELS
03-06-00. From KSZoneW. Cut out Xena calling Khrafstar a b*st*rd.
MORE THINGS TO LOOK OUT FOR
12-16-99. From Jody Stump. The first time I watched this ep, I noticed that the scene where Boadicea blows in on her chariot and battles with the romans was very dark. I was unsure of whether this was intentional or not, but it was very noticable. The second time I saw it,a recently obtained factoid "shed a new light" on the scene. Boadicea (ca 60 AD) was known for her practice of washing herself in blue dye before facing her enemy in battle. Sure enough, when I saw this scene again there was a definite blue tint to it. From the point where Xena flashes her sword to signal her arival the scene cuts to the ship on the blue ocean with the blue sky and then cuts to the beach with the Roman soldiers and everything appears washed in blue. This must be a tribue to Boadicea's ritual.
Sources: Recent issue of Discover magazine(Feb or March) mentions Boadicea's practice in an article about the blue dye she used being derived from the woad plant. I watched this episode on 2 tvs the second time(one with captions and one without-I'm a student, what can I say). I also taped this episode the second time and viewed this particular scene a couple extra times to make sure I was right. It was more noticable on the tv with better color but still noticable on the bigger tv, especially after reading the above mentioned article.
10-07-98. From KSZoneW. Music from "The Deliver"'s Dahak sacrifice scene was used in HTLJ's "Armageddon Now".
10-07-98. From KSZoneW. A clip from "The Deliver" was shown in the HTLJ's episode "Armageddon Now" during the time travel scenes of Iolaus.
10-07-98. From KSZoneW. The windows in the Temple can also be seen in XWP's "The Debt II" and HTLJ's "My Fair Cupcake".
01-31-98. From Nick Nayko: In THE DELIVERER, the show places Stonehenge in a hilly area, when it real life, Stonehenge is located on a vast plain. In CALLISTO, the show portrays the Oracle of Delphi in a walled town on the plains while the historical Oracle at Delphi was on a mountain and not in a walled town. [Are we observing some Xenaverse law of the conservation of locations?]
From Beth: Xena's sword is back! DIRTY HALF DOZEN? What DIRTY HALF DOZEN? While we're on the topic of swords, Ares was sure loving his new toy, wasn't he? He mentioned giving it out to a few folks: wonder if we'll be seeing it again? [Editor- in-chief's note: Obviously this was the set up for DIRTY HALF DOZEN. They are playing let's air the shows out of order again.]
From Beth: And speaking of "what DIRTY HALF DOZEN?", we really didn't need to see the exact same exploding castle footage from DOZEN again one week later, especially since that castle is a different structure than the temple. Baaaad timing, placing those two in back-to-back weeks.
From Beth: Blooper alert! During Khrafstar's explanation to Gabrielle about faith (which becomes creepy once you know where he's really coming from), watch Khrafstar's arms. They change positions depending on the camera angle.
From KSZoneW. Some Dahak information from "Persian Mythology" by John R. Hinnells:
The term Druj, Lie or Deceit, is often used as a designation for Angra Mainyn or for a partictflar fiend, or again for a class of demons the most notorious of whom is Azhi Dahaka, a figure we have met before (pp.37 43). Dahaka, with his three heads, six eyes and three jaws, is painted in clearer and more mythological colours than most of the demons. His body is full of lizards, scorpions and other vile creatures so that if he were cut open the whole world would he filled with such creates. On one occasion he offered in sacrifice to Anahita a hundred horses, a thousand oxen and ten thousand lambs, praying that he might be allowed to depopulate the earth-his constant desire. On another occasion he approache d Vayu with sacrifice from his accursed palace with its golden beams, throne and canopy, but his destructive desires were scorned by both of the heavenly beings. Filled with the urge to destroy, this offspring of the Evil Spirit sought to extinguish the sacred flame, but was foiled by the hero Yima. He had his revenge, for he not only stole the daughters of the great ruler but also sawed Yima himself in two. The sweetness of his victory was short-lived however, for the hero Thraetaona liberated the maidens, and imprisoned Dahaka in Mount Demavend. Here he remains until the end ofhistory when he will again attack the world, devour one third ofits creatures and smite fire, water and vegetation until he is finally slain by the resurrected Keresaspa.
Click here to read a transcript of THE DELIVERER .
Gabrielle was slightly well-done during the production of this motion picture. However, the producers would like to recommend a zesty barbeque sauce to bring out the full flavor of this episode.