Saturday, June 6, 2015

Olympus, Season 1, Episode 9: Pandora's Tomb

Medea investigates Hero’s disappearance, finding the claw marks left by Kronos. They’re ancient symbols of the gods and she needs Xerxes to translate – to the prisoner caves! There she gets him to translate with the grim promise of a much less painful and horrible death. The symbols mean love, heritage and human soul.

Of course, Medea doesn’t even follow through on the grim bribe she offered. He resorts to base flattery.

Medea goes to Daedalus who is worried because he made a mistake – he told Hero where the door to Olympus was based on using big impressive buildings which they took to be god made as surrounding the door – except now he realises the buildings are actually petrified titans killed by the gods during the war – and at the centre isn’t a gateway, it’s a weapon. Oops. The doors to hell and bad stuff.

Medea insists she go to rescue Hero. This involves trudging about in the night, being attacked by wild men who have a theological argument, attempted rape before 1 kills the other and the living one runs away leaving her tied up with a corpse draped over her

Hero goes to his rendez-vous with Oracle – and finds Ariadne instead. She is obsessed with him and convinced he loves me. Best line goes to:
“tell me you feel nothing for me and I will leave you alone”
“I feel nothing for you.” Without even a beat of hesitation. Ouch. Unsurprisingly she doesn’t keep her word.

She also wants Hero to know that she and Oracle are totally besties now. She keeps up with the love thing which Hero doesn’t believe and drags her out at sword point, sure she has an army waiting to swoop in. She kisses him – she’s certainly stubborn. She also adds that Oracle doesn’t love Hero because she loves Ariadne and is a lesbian which is why she’s a virgin and Oracle is so in love with Ariadne but it’s all good because Ariadne loves Hero above all.

Yessss, she is not selling this well at all.

They set off and Ariadne collapses in tears because he doesn’t want her and now she can’t go back without daddy killing her and how she has rejected his father for Hero because she loves and adores him and is willing to do everything for him. Hero rejects her – pointing out the idyllic future she thinks of would be doomed because their son would be cursed just like him. He continues to beg for his love and they kiss

Ok I take it back, she is selling that well because that night they’re all cuddly (while Ariadne is completely out of her element in the forest) as Hero discusses his plans – he wants rid of the curse so he doesn’t curse his son, and has no desire to become a god for REASONS.

They arrive at the cave, with an ice cold golden apple outside. Inside they find Pandora’s tomb which Ariadne quickly realised is a terrible terrible TERRIBLE thing to open. Hero doesn’t listen, of course, so Ariadne decides on another relationship conversation – and Hero says he loves her with all his heart, That was a quick turn around.

Back in Athens, Oracle is released by Minos’s men who tell Minos that his daughter has been doing weird things with scorpions and has now disappeared. Minos is very upset by his vanishing lovely torture mad monster child and half convinced that Oracle is responsible. He demands a vision and she tells Minos that Ariadne is going to the Temple of Hera on pilgrimage to ask Poseidon to forgive Minos… and she’s all alone. Minos sends men after her – I’m sad he fell for that, since when has Ariadne shown even the slightest religious leaning? Both he and she seem quite blasé about the whole gods thing, but his desperation as a father balances it well.

He begs her help in finding Hero and his daughter so they can get the Lexicon and had off to Olympus – he wants her to be his queen and his equal. Oracle is not really happy with this but agrees – so long as he does something for her (which bemuses Minos since he’s just offered her the universe). She wants him to kill Aegeus since her vision showed he would kill the gods and end their world.

But this isn’t easy because apparently killing kings annoys the gods – and killing Aegeus will annoy Poseidon (the bane of Minos’s existence) so they need to go through elaborate steps to make the king slaying ok – which is all quite involved and Minos wants Daedalus’s help. He tries to claim they need a crucible of volcanic stone so he can be allowed to make more wings – so Medea can use them to rescue Hero in time.

Oracle prays to Athena, tormented by the fact she’s having Aegeus killed and Minos questions her – desperate and emotional – for the truth about what happened to his daughter. Oracle tells him that Ariadne went off after Hero – but that she doesn’t know where they are. He asks for a vision – and she sees Hero and Ariadne lying together and kissing which she finds quite traumatic. She stalls for time in giving Minos a vision, pushing for him to wait until after Aegeus is dead.

In the prison caves Lykos tries to bond with his dad but Aegeus is a terrible person and is waiting for divine intervention. Well, that’s an escape plan, I guess. Aegeus becomes more and more delirious, screaming that he’s the king and revealing himself to the other prisoners who have little reason to like him (along with everyone else they’ve ever met). Someone tries to kill Aegeus and Lykos ends up having to kill him to defend his father. Aegeus puts this down to divine intervention before insulting his son further who is crawling on the floor, injured

Which is when the guards arrive to take Aegeus away to the king murdering ceremony. It begins – and Oracle has her world destroying vision only to realise, at the last minute, that Aegeus isn’t the King of Athens who will destroy the gods – Hero is. She hurries to save Aegeus’s life (damn it…)

Hero opens Pandora’s tomb. Inside is the ring of the Magi and some ominous black water which drags them both inside. In Athens, Ariadne tells Minos they must kill him.

I am not even close to enjoying the Ariadne/Hero thing. Ariadne was crafty and cunning, more than a little scary and a deft manipulator. It was that same manipulation that made it so hard to pin down exactly what she felt or wanted (including whether she was bisexual and interested in the Oracle or just trying to manipulate her). I thought her love was just that, another manipulation. Instead we have this powerful character who has now become little more than a desperate, love sick fool willing to throw everything away for a man who doesn’t want her and she has known for hardly any time

And Hero returning her love? He has rejected her repeatedly, he has declared his love for someone else, she has tried to sexually assault him on more than one occasion, she has forced kisses on him he didn’t want – but now he loves her? Someone doesn’t want you but if you push and push and push and push eventually they’ll cave and it’s true love time!

The Aegeus/Hero twist would be a twist if it weren’t rather predictable.

And why Medea would wander off alone without any help at all does not seem sensible – but where is her sorcery? Where is the power that was so feared before? Now she’s reduced to this, helplessly bluffing (that was always the Oracle’s thing) while a man tries to rape her? Why is this show bringing these powerful women down so much?