Written by

First Televised

Guest Stars: Ted Raimi (Joxer), Kevin Smith (Ares)

Synopsis Coming Soon!

This turns out to be a much better episode than Fallen Angel. We see the beginning of Gabrielle's new attitude; she'll do whatever is takes to protect Xena, including the use of violence. This makes her a lot more interesting than the complete pacifist she was last season. A story thread that has been running since the second season episode A Comedy Of Eros is finally continued here as Joxer decides he needs to tell Gabrielle he is in love with her. His telling her before the final fight scene because he's afraid they may not survive makes the actual battle seem more important; it doesn't come off as just another going-through-the-motions fight. The return of Ares is a great thing for the series. His absence during most of last season was part of the reason the stories became less compelling. (Although he seemed more "god-like" with longer hair rather than the short hair he has now). Finally, we are given a fascinating scenario where Xena has lost her dark side. This is something that Gabrielle has wanted since the beginning of the series. But now it's finally gone, and Gabrielle finds that Xena is completely different person who seems lost. A nice ironic twist where your wish finally comes true but it's not anything like you expected it to be. Xena's new chakram looks cool, although I still have a slight preference for the original. All in all, this episode shows that the fifth season is off to a promising start.

It seems that Gabrielle does not love Joxer, at least not romantically. This would arguably begin to change in Lyre, Lyre, Hearts On Fire.

In the beginning we see Xena and Gabrielle sitting in the tomb saying they'll be together forever, and we hear a piece of music (The Love Of Your Love Is You) from The Bitter Suite. A nice touch.

The end credits disclaimer:

Season 5 Episode Guide

Enter The Land Of Xena