The Arkansas Democrat - Gazette

5 February 1998

The TV Column:; Xena: The sound of music

BY: Michael Storey

"Ladies and Gentlemen, the Elysian Room high atop the Hotel Athena is proud to present the lilting musical stylings of Xena, Warrior Princess!"

Well, not quite, but followers of Xena: Warrior Princess are in for a treat in a special musical episode airing at 7 p.m. Saturday on KASN-UPN38. That Xena can sing won't come as any surprise to fans of Lucy Lawless, the leggy New Zealander who plays Xena. Beneath all that leather and brass is a dynamite set of pipes.

But in this special episode, "The Bitter Suite," everybody gets to sing. Maybe it's because much of the show takes place in the dream world of Illusia where one must sing to be heard.

All I'm going to reveal here (skip ahead if you don't want to know anything at all) is that Gabrielle (Renee O'Connor) returns to her Amazon sisters in despair to undergo a purification ritual after her terrible ordeal -- the death of her daughter, Hope, and her bitter, bitter conflict with her bosom buddy, Xena.

This parting of the ways has been in the works for a while.  Meanwhile, Xena is in anguish over Gabrielle's betrayal and the murder of her own son, Solan. Ares (Kevin Smith) convinces Xena to give in to her rage and she rides into the Amazon village determined to kill Gabrielle.

Does Xena kill Gabrielle? Does Gabrielle kill Xena? Do they kill each other in a terrible plunge off the cliff into the dark and inky waters of the lake where they are held under by the enchanted waterfall? Does Joxer commit suicide in despair? What inner demons is Callisto hiding? What mysterious power does the Tarot Book's Hanged Man hold over everyone? And what about the infamous Wheel of Fortune and the dark, hooded figure known only as Torment?

All I'll say is everything finally becomes clear in the Temple of Dahak and, since Xena and Gabrielle are in another episode scheduled next week, nobody dies for very long. I'll also say that all this tension that's been building up between Gabrielle and Xena is resolved in a very interesting way with this episode. No more pussyfooting around. This settles

Until then, "Ladies and gentlemen, Xena has left the building."