Olympus 1-5: Blood Brothers

The hero gets a flat-out murderous introduction to Athens.  The Oracle and Daedalus try to avoid Minos and Ariadne’s wrath.

Last time on Olympus: King Minos held the trio captive and Medea wanted to get her husband’s firstborn into Athens.

 

So, I had begun the episode and guess who had directed it?

5amandatapping

This was my face: O_O.  Why?

5sgcredit

I know her as Sam Carter from Stargate SG-1.

Checking IMDB, it is in fact her and not somebody with the same name.  I suppose this is the retroactive justification for doing this series on my blog…?  It turns out she directed four of the episodes, but she’s the only name I recognized out of the directors.  The other three are the next episode, “Pandora’s Tomb”, and “Heritage”.

Onwards to the actual review!

Over in Minos’ camp, the Oracle and Daedalus do their best not to anger him or his daughter.  The Oracle does manipulate Thybus into going far, far away since she too finds him aggravating.  The inventor is slowly regaining his sight as time goes by.  Daedalus’ plan to get through the walls of Athens involves building a giant bronze bull and using its tongue.   I do not blame Minos for being skeptical.  Minos wants access to the Lexicon too, which seems odd given his earlier claims of not believing in the gods.  But to use the Lexicon he knows he’ll need the Oracle’s aid since she’s proven herself to have powers.

The Oracle manages to divert their suspicions by claiming she was mostly asleep when tied up and presumed it was Minos doing it as a sexy thing.  Ariadne seems to enjoy being tied up during sex as seen last episode, so the two accept it… without remembering that same night the hero also tied up Ariadne.  Then again, even if they did suspect the hero/spy tied her up, he obviously couldn’t be allied with her otherwise she would have gone with him.  Plus, they’re soon distracted by the offer of a meeting with Lykos, which they figure will grant them access to the Lexicon.

There’s a scene early on where Ariadne gives the Oracle a sensual massage starting with a foot and working her way up until the Oracle has her ‘end of the world’ vision again.  As she later confesses to Daedalus, she’s afraid their actions are causing the vision to happen rather than preventing it.  I’m rather bemused she didn’t think of this before, as Greek myths/plays are infamous for the ‘self-fulfilling prophecy’.  In the ending montage, there’s a scene of a sleeping Ariadne with an awake Oracle in the same bed.  Now, Minos did tell his daughter to treat the Oracle like a sister to help get her onto their side.  But it’s a fairly close parallel to an earlier scene of a sleeping Kimon and an awake Lykos, down to the sleeper on the left and the awake person on the right (as far as the camera is concerned, anyway).

Familicide

Of course, speaking of self-fulfilling prophecies, Aegeus and Lykos both react badly to the idea of the hero entering their lives.  Aegeus is afraid his son will kill him (um, why wasn’t Lykos a concern?  Is it just first-born sons?).  Of course, Pallas and Xerxes continue to manipulate Lykos, particularly though Kimon.  Pallas is certain Kimon loves him more than Lykos when Xerxes expresses his concern… which definitely raises some questions about how Pallas and Kimon interact.  Pallas was the one to realize Lykos’ budding sexuality leant towards men; maybe the reason he’s fine with being the power behind the throne is because he’s uninterested in women and therefore siring an heir?

Medea uses the priestess to try to convince Aegeus to welcome his son, but that just infuriates him to the point where he throws her out, cursing her out.  At one point Aegeus points out what happened with Kronos and Zeus and is afraid he’ll be overthrown.  Yeah, but Zeus overthrew Kronos because he had eaten Zeus’ five siblings and would have eaten him (and thought he did).  Plus, he wouldn’t have made it to his first birthday without his mother Rhea’s cunning (with an assist from grandma Gaia).  So, again with the self-fulfilling prophecies.  Plus, um, Lykos is the one who’s been showing signs of wanting his time as ruler to come sooner rather than later.

Once captured by the guards, Lykos spots the blue feet.  Once explained they’re brothers, Lykos starts in on the torture.  I don’t think his mentality will be helped by the fact that Medea stopped with the bloodletting as soon as she knew he wasn’t Aegeus’ firstborn son.

The hero does manage to get his way out of the dungeon.  But once in the throne room, he gets attacked by a wrathful Aegeus.  At one point he’s backed up into the throne, leading Aegeus to shout about him taking his throne and for wielding a blade in this sacred area.  … Okay, but he wouldn’t be doing either of those things if you hadn’t started it.

Xerxes and Pallas learn from Kimon about the hero and want him dead whether or not he’s the firstborn son.  They find a tied-up Lykos in the dungeon; Xerxes stays behind to untie him while Pallas goes to the throne room with a guard to sic on the hero.

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Divining with blood in a gold platter (it’s too broad and flat to be a bowl, and too large for a plate, so I don’t know what else to call it), Medea sees a blade materialize.  This enables her to show up just in time to save the hero’s life, as seen above.  She honestly states she’s the reason he’s here, certain that he’s Aegeus’ firstborn and the source of the Lexicon.  Both Aegeus and Pallas are in shocked; Lykos shows up just in time to see Medea egg Aegeus into placing a hand on the hero’s shoulder.  The ending montage includes Lykos looking out over Athens looking a combination of determined and psychotic.

Conclusion

In a weird way, Medea now has a trump card she didn’t expect nor want.  She spent most of the episode trying to directly and indirectly get Aegeus to welcome his firstborn to Aegeus (overlooking how Lykos would react, but she can’t think of everything).  But by saving him from Aegeus, Medea now has the hero trusting her.  Lykos tortured him, Aegeus tried to kill him directly, Pallas ordered a guard to kill him, and I’m pretty certain Xerxes won’t make a good impression.  He’s going to trail after the only person in Athens who’s been nice to him like a duckling… particularly since his mother’s loss presumably happened shortly before the series’ start so he likely wants a maternal figure in his life since for most of his life that was all he had.

Of course, Lykos somehow managed to hide the Ring of the Magi, which probably will be resolved next episode or at least continued.  Lykos is starting to act out and it’s getting ugly.  Matters will definitely worsen when he finds out Kimon is Pallas’ spy.

Minos and Ariadne frankly aren’t any worse than the people in Athens, so the situation is shaping up to be a very grey versus grey one.  The dynamic between Ariadne and the Oracle is… charged with tension.  I have no clue what to predict on that front.  Thankfully, Daedalus is recovering his eyesight.

Amanda Tapping did her best, but honestly?  This episode was messy, although to a degree it was supposed to be.  Aegeus, Pallas, and Lykos all want the hero dead in order to maintain their own power, even at the risk of losing the Lexicon.  Medea and the hero are seemingly the only people in Athens’ court with any common sense or compassion.  And Medea isn’t exactly nice, but I appreciate how she knows that the ‘gentler’ emotions like kindness can be just as or even more powerful than fear or anger.

I suspect it’s now inevitable that there’ll be a split between Medea and the Athenian court and she’ll end up siding with the trio for… well, not ending the world?  Clearly the Oracle’s vision depends on someone being the King of Athens and doing a thing… but who?  Aegeus is the current king, but both Pallas and Lykos are hungry for power.  And there is a chance the hero will end up on the throne somehow.

 

Next time on Olympus: Medea wants access to the Lexicon- supposedly for her husband’s sake.

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