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The Abyss Reviewed

In an all action episode, Xena and Gabrielle face another savage tribe (a bit like The Horde from The Price and Daughter of Pomira), but this lot are even worse...they are cannibals, and young Virgil and a pal of his are on the menu. Well girls, we do think Greg is pretty tasty don't we?

Meanwhile Gabrielle is still agonizing over killing Korah in Legacy, and her hesitation in a fight with the bearskinned long-pig eaters leads to a stabbing, and some really nice touchy feely stuff between Xena and Gabrielle as they are forced to wait it out in a snug little underground cavern. Xena is forced into some of her most original planning that we have seen in ages. The plan involves handing Gabrielle over to the cannibals...are you *sure* Xena??

This was another excellent episode. We saw Xena and her most resourceful in ages, and I love the episodes that show her to be not just a good warrior, but exceptionally clever too. Her skills (add lumberjack to the list) are put to good use as she manages to save the day against another huge army.

The story arc dealing with Gabrielle`s attitude to killing continues, and there is a really nice exchange between Xena and Gab as they paddle along looking for Virgil. Gabrielle very astutely decides that she has the reactions of a warrior, but not the judgement..spot on, lovey. The Xena/Gabrielle discussions in this episode were some of the more intense we have seen, with Gabrielle semi-deliriously talking to Xena as if she were Hope at one point. Did Xena really not realise how Gabrielle felt about the whole Hope situation? I was a little puzzled about why they went back to the Hope storyline anyway. This was dealt with some time ago in Paradise Found wasn't it? Another little scene where Gabrielle asks to be buried next to Xena in Amphipolis was quite sweet. They seem to be going all out this year with the `soulmates` idea for Xena and Gabrielle. This whole scene was very reminiscent of quite a lot of Xena fanfic stories...the classic hurt/comfort scenario. Xena is quite the nurturer here, probably saved Gabrielle about 4 times altogether, however, Gabrielle is an integral part of her plan. Once she is healed by the cannibals (who want healthy food, obviously...) Gabrielle and the fairly useless Virgil team up to save their skins.

I know many people really really liked this episode. It topped the early favourite S6 episode poll - and there will be another one of those near the end of the year - mainly I think because it is a fast paced and exciting story, yet we also get some really sweet Xena/Gabrielle interaction. For me, while I thought it was a terrific episode, I didn`t find the emotional stuff as powerful as Gabrielle and Xena`s dilemma in Legacy. The feverish Gabrielle telling Xena how she felt just seemed a bit clichéd to me..call me a cynical old bag!




A very pacey and exciting episode.

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