In the aftermath of last week’s proposal, it is was mere moments before the decidedly dodgy Prince Telemon (Clive Standen) was confirmed as being in Pasiphae’s employ, his dastardly purpose cemented by a torso swipe of her magical chicken blood.
While the former Queen had faith in his allegiance, driven by a desire to return to nobility and his daddy issues, newcomer Medea (Amy Manson) showed herself to be a shrewder judge of character.
Meanwhile, Hercules had been spying on the shifty prince and after revealing that Telemon had been out of the city all night, Jason was prompted to seek an audience with Ariadne. Although he failed to persuade her to call off the match, he did manage to bag the heroic trio positions in the retinue protecting the Queen and her intended on the perilous journey to meet his father in Agena.
As they endured the journey, with Jason in the terrible position of escorting the woman he loves to a marriage with another man, there were plenty of longing looks and worried glances thrown about. It was not all tension though, as we indulged in some thoughtful fireside chat and amusement at the expense of the luckless Pythagoras.
When the action came, after Telemon had given away their route by way of some devious whittling, we were thrilled to see Ariadne (Aiysha Hart) get stuck in. Appearing to relish the action hero antics, she promptly demonstrated she was capable of looking after herself and was a crack shot with a bow and arrow!
Holed up and needing to escape, with the loyal Dion (Vincent Regan) wounded, for some reason it became necessary for the Queen to strip off her regal robes. Not that we are complaining, but surely her bright white undergarments were just as easy to spot as the blue? (Unless the Colcheans suffer a colour-blindness issue we are not aware of, that is.)
The rest of the story became a chase, with Pasiphae and Medea following the trail of Jason and co, who took up with travelling pilgrims. Why Medea did not simply summon her flying beast from the season opener we cannot guess, but it granted us time with the blind seer Orpheus, played by the wonderfully warm Ronald Pickup. As he dispensed some advice to Jason surrounding his momentous journey, his wife counselled Ariadne on the dangers of denial regarding her feelings.
With a ripping cliff-hanger, in truth a cliff-tumbler, things look set for a dramatic confrontation next time. If Ariadne’s aim was as true as it appeared, Pasiphae could be in trouble and goodness only knows what Medea’s agenda is – she has hardly uttered a word so far!
One thing we do know is that she has little tolerance for traitors, as her merciless stabbing of Telemon’s water-bladder proved. We certainly do not expect to see him again… do we?
Aired at 8.15pm on Saturday 6 December 2014 on BBC One.
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