I don't see how Xena demonstrated loving one more so over the other. Just as much, yes. And in slightly different ways. And I agree completely with your synopsis below.
This was especially shown when Xena was looking at both of them when Lyceus was checking out Gabrielle. I didn't see Xena as caring more for Gabrielle than her brother. Her brother gave her permission to care about Gabrielle. Actually, there was some projection going on. Xena realized that Gabrielle was the continuation of her brother. When Lyceus went on about destiny that was the key.
Then when Xena turned and saw Gabrielle kill, she knew she had to go back. I wouldn't say that was favoring one over the other. Let's not forget, too, that Xena's mother had died in the altered destiny.
The two being Destiny No. Xena shames her mother by being the bad warrior and leading many to their deaths. Xena's mother dies and never has to go through the heartache Xena had caused in 1. Yet she dies in the battle that the new Xena didn't stop. This was yet another choice to weigh in her decision to stay on the new path or return to what was her true destiny.
The Fates were obviously trying to get Xena to realize that she was who she was because of fate. Is that a pun, or what? This episode has given the Xena-Gabrielle relationship a mystical basis.
The friendship now seems to be Xena's destiny. On one level Lyceus was talking about fighting the bad guys as Xena's destiny. Gabrielle plays the function that Lyceus used to serve for Xena; that is Xena's moral bearing. When Lyceus made his destiny comments, what happened almost immediately? Gabrielle killed someone whom Xena killed in her original alternative life.
Thus Xena-Gabrielle relationship has now taken on a deeper meaning. She wasn't the cheerful, wise, little bard destiny had made her. And worst of all, she had been caught on camera without makeup and a hairbrush! In a way, yes, she was swiftly becoming what Xena had been. A bitter soul who would seek revenge. KYM And so was Lyceus. It was like the times demanded a warped person who would sacrifice their humanity in order to rid the area of their overage of warlords.
Xena was that lamb. But she was extremely successful. Finally she "found her way" before she completely went over to the dark side. She basically took that burden from Lyceus and Gabrielle.
Oh no, Christ metaphors again! The Three Fates allowed Xena to see that. However, why did they? She said all she wanted was the boy's life back. Why did the Three Fates make her go through all that before saving his life? Perhaps because she was to "protect" another youth from the killing way, just as she was to protect Gabrielle. Because her wishes to the Fates were definitely connected.
She says "I want that boy's life back. Thus, to go back and do nothing, which would have been a better title for this episode, "Do Nothing" only left other, worse people, to do the killing.
Only they killed the more innocent. Xena took on the task for herself because, heck, that's just the kind of gal she is! After this episode, I am going to be very surprised if they ever have Gabrielle kill anyone. Imagine the episode where Gabby finally does someone in I could see that happening. I could also see the soul-searching she would be likely to do.
KYM I don't know. By tying this to an encounter with the Fates, and by Xena giving up Lyceus one more time for Gabrielle.
It'd be a real slap in the face, eh? Those writers must hate me! Anyways, back to Xena. Perhaps becoming "Christ-like" is the price of being so "self-sacrificing". In the alternative reality Gabrielle kills him. Xena takes on Gabrielle's sins in the proper timeline, so she did not have to lose her blood innocence.
Also, the idea of "eternal" bonding should be explored. The romantic in me likes that. The alternative Xena chased Gabrielle and slowly worked on building her trust; where it was Gabrielle who did the chasing in the original timeline. Like the original Gabrielle, the alternative Xena never gave up. Xena originally was the bitter and closed-in one, while in the alternative reality Gabrielle plays that part.
This implied among other things! See what I mean by mystical bonds now? Yet on the other hand, just as it is with Callisto and their far less appealing bond, Mystical bonds aren't always good. But they are our destiny. Little loose ends that pop up to say "it's pay-back time! If the mystical bond theory holds true, then even the bad ones must reappear with the rest. However, I am uncertain if Callisto would have then grown up good, or if Gabrielle would have created her in this alternate reality.
If the fates hold true, Callisto was probably destined to be bad. Imagine yet another twist that would have been caused if Callisto had been in this episode. I am saying that, in the alternate fate, the bond between Gabrielle and Xena would not have been a good one, in my eyes. I think it could have easily become a living nightmare for Xena. Then again, I feel that the fates were irrelevant.
We must keep in mind that you are speaking with someone who doesn't believe in the fate theory. To me, life is like trying to choose the correct goblet in the Holy Grail Scenario. You either "Choose Poorly" or you "Choose Wisely".
To say that Xena is the way she is because fate said so just doesn't jive with me. I didn't mean fated to be together throughout time as a real event in our existence, but as a literary device.
My point, and I do have one, is that the producers have raised some issues regarding the relationship between the two friends Xena and Gabrielle, just in case I have already lost some one. Obviously Lyceus and Gabrielle were attracted. But they were also very similar. I think Xena realized that Gabrielle filled the function of her brother. I guess making her a sister. Anyways, the episode did make their bonds more strong. And Xena has come to terms with some very weighty matters in her life.
Now, she had to battle her pre-warlord self to rescue Gabrielle! What does that leave in terms of personal growth And who is that with? KYM That was probably the real reason she stabbed that guy!!! The sequels in XENA: They use concepts and symbols not plot and characters.
Xena is pretty brutal in both her first kill of the episode and her final kill. Both were anonymous skewerings, i. Get my drift, yet? This gave the brutalness of killing just enough emphasis to make it more "real" to us.