Xena's Story

Infused with the same high-action, high-production values and humor that has made "Hercules" a breakout hit in syndication, "Xena: Warrior Princess" combines mythology with martial arts action, big-screen special effects and spectacular New Zealand scenery in 22 original episodes this season.

"Xena" is set in the "Golden Age" of myth, long before ancient Greece or Rome, on the distant frontier of known civilization far away from the land of mighty Hercules. The whims of capricious gods and the greed of human tyrants make her world a treacherous one. Surrounded by enemies, barbaric tribes, slave traders and a host of other evils, the warrior princess is on a mission to help people free themselves from tyranny and injustice.

Xena was first introduced in a March episode of "Hercules" as an intrepid warrior bent on destruction, who sets out to kill Hercules in her quest for power. But when a single act of compassion causes her own army to betray her, she undergoes a radical conversion. Realizing she's lost sight of her own humanity in her obsession to prove herself the ultimate warrior, Xena becomes Hercules' ally and love interest before heading homeward to begin a new life.

"Xena: Warrior Princess" picks up where "Hercules" left off, with Xena determined to make amends for the sins of her past. On the road home, she defends a small peasant village from a band of soldiers dispatched by the ruthless warlord Draco. There she meets a spirited young woman named Gabrielle (Renee O'Connor), who secretly follows the warrior princess in search of a more exciting life. Along the way, she outwits a blind, man-eating cyclops and thwarts an ambush by Draco's men, finally reaching her home village with the knowledge that Draco plans to destroy it. Offering her help, she is met with hostility and distrust by everyone, including her mother Cyrene (Darien Takle), who cannot forgive her daughter for her dark past.

Ultimately, Xena and Draco square off in a spectacular battle and she defeats the barbaric warlord. Though she has saved the village and reconciled with her mother, she cannot erase the misery she has caused over the years. Joined by the feisty and fast-talking Gabrielle, Xena leaves to search out her father and continue her battle against the forces of evil.

Xena's amazing skills in the arts of combat and warfare are constantly put to the test as she travels across the land. To defeat her foes, she relies on strategy, agility, acrobatics, martial arts, and a variety of weapons including her chakram, a razor sharp discus-like weapon which she hurls at her enemies with astonishing speed. In her arsenal is also the "Xena touch," a two-fingered pinch on the pressure points of the neck, which she uses to extract information from otherwise uncooperative sources. Smart, fearless, and heroic, she always tries to solve things peacefully; but once committed to a course of action, she is unrelenting.

Xena's weekly adventures unfold through an exciting mix of live-action and state-of-the-art special effects. Cutting-edge computer graphic imaging techniques, including 3-D animation and digital composition, are combined with complex makeup and prosthetic effects to create the terrifying assortment of mythological gods, demons and monsters which inhabit her world. The production is further enhanced by elaborate and extremely imaginative sets and costumes, reflecting style elements from a wide range of historical periods and places.


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