Running a little late again, but here's the review post for Atlantis episode 2.4 - The Marriage of True Minds.
Herein lies spoilers. And pictures. Lots of both.
Shirtless Award: Telemon (briefly)
Surprise Kick Ass Combatant Award: Ariadne
Finally Remembered How to Smile Award: Jason
Well, this episode all got very action packed and exciting. But unlike the opening two-parter which was practically all action and very little else, this one had a decent amount of character and relationship moments as well, which was good.
In more important news, however, Jason has finally remembered how to smile! And laugh! It’s only taken him four episodes.
I kind of love the idea that Hercules has random street urchins spying for him. And that he is something of a soft touch with the kid. You do have to ask, however, why does he now have money to throw at street urchins when the theme for much of series 1 involved them being broke? Did they get paid well for being Ariadne’s super secret special ops team in the first two episodes?
Jason’s meeting with Ariadne is interesting. He oversteps the bounds of their relationship several times, and Ariadne very much lets him know when he does it (this happens several times during the course of the episode, it becomes a running joke, in fact). I’m actually liking their relationship a lot more now that she is queen and that she is making her own decisions and sticking by them and not letting him tell her what to do.
Jason, however, is still being stubborn and refusing to listen to his friends. This is getting old now. Hercules and Pythagoras aren’t even bothering to argue with him very much any more. They just both get that long-suffering look as soon as he has flounced off in a heroic huff after making decisions on their behalf and assuming they will follow him.
Hercules: How do we protect a man so stubbornly ruled by his heart?
Pythagoras: Presumably the Oracle foretold such difficulties.
Hercules: Not to me she didn’t.
Nice to see that Dion respects the boys and is pleased to have them joining this little excursion. Dion continues to be quietly competent and awesome.
As a random aside, I am loving the new soundtrack themes. The music for this episode was particularly stunning. I really hope they release the soundtrack on CD like they did for Merlin.
So, Pythagoras really needs to learn to be more sneaky and subtle when spying on Telemon. Or at the very least, he ought to sit in a position where he is actually facing the person he is supposed to be watching, rather than blatantly turning around and staring at him in a really obvious way every five minutes.
Campsite conversation with the boys. \o/ Jason has remembered how to smile. And laugh! Finally! The three of them laughing and joking and bantering together is one of the real joys of this show, so it’s a shame it’s taken until episode four for it to happen. But when it did finally happen, it was glorious. The discussion of their respective love lives was just adorable. And they couldn’t resist another dig at Pythagoras and his apparent lack of interest in anyone, ever. Why has it taken until episode 4 before we’ve had a scene with all three of the boys laughing together? Why??!!!
So, was anyone really surprised that Telemon turned out to be working for Pasiphae? And was anyone surprised when Pasiphae then stabbed him in the back the moment he stopped being useful? Nope? Didn’t think so. Although we didn’t see him die, so I’m wondering if we might see him again at some point.
Also, the ambush in the mountain pass. Given that they know Colcheans tend to have a lot of archers, wouldn’t having some archers of their own have been useful? The main reason why they got so badly massacred seems to be their lack of defence when the enemy bowmen have the high ground and they are trapped in the valley of death with no (or very few) range weapons. Of course, it was mostly for plot purposes so that their entire entourage could get massacred, leaving only the five named characters to go on alone. For what must presumably be the cream of the royal Atlantean bodyguard, the Atlantean soldiers suck.
Ariadne is a kick ass archer. Who’d have thought it? It was worth it for the look on Jason’s face afterwards, though. Especially after his patronising little explanation of how to fire a bow beforehand.
But I have to ask, when Jason is injured, why is it Ariadne who tends to his injury? They have Pythagoras, a man who is a highly skilled healer and well practised in emergency field first aid. But he stands around in the background doing nothing, while the queen deals with it. Really?
And then Dion gets injured. Noooo!!!!!! Also, Pythagoras ‘left everything that might be useful back there’??????!!! Idiot. I know they were supposed to be ‘travelling light’ in order to avoid being spotted, but in that situation, first aid supplies are surely not on the list of things that can be left behind.
So, all the named characters, having escaped the ambush and set off alone into the desert, eventually come across a group of miscellaneous mythological characters, and try to bluff their way into accompanying them. Can I just suggest that while someone is teaching Pythagoras how to be a more subtle spy, perhaps they could also teach Jason how to bluff and create believable cover stories. Jason... seller of cooking pots. Let’s file that one under disguise!fail. Orpheus and Eurydice are rather cool, though, and quite clearly cheerleading for Jason/Ariadne, despite only having met them five minutes earlier.
Someone really needs to give Jason a copy of royal etiquette 101. Rule number 5 – Do not stare down the queen of Atlantis’ cleavage. Or if you must, be less obvious about it.
The production crew are really getting their money’s worth out of the caves set this series. Also, going by all current evidence, every time they enter a cave system, Hercules and Pythagoras’ sole function appears to be to carry an injured person. But really, underground ‘ancient necropolis’? That really isn’t going to end well, is it?
And finally, Jason and Medea meet at last! And we have an even more cliff-hangery cliff-hanger than the one at the end of episode 2.1.
So, some general thoughts. It was nice to see the three boys all together and laughing and joking and talking like they used to, even if it was only for one scene. In previous review posts I’ve commented on how much Jason seems to be separating from the others and doing his own thing, and so this episode was a refreshing change in that theme. Although, of course, given that he has been physically separated from the rest of the group at the very end of the episode, I sense that we will be returning to ‘Jason goes off on his own and does stuff while Hercules and Pythagoras work together’ for the next episode. It’s also interesting to note that Jason seemed a lot more relaxed once everyone else was dead and it was just them and the queen in the desert in a survival situation. That boy is a serious adrenaline junkie.
Staying with the theme of group dynamics, one problem I am noticing with the new darker tone and more action and fight-oriented episodes is that they don’t quite seem to know what to do with Pythagoras any more. Episode 2.3 last week was the first time he had really contributed anything of note to the plot in the entire series, and this week, with another episode filled with fights and chases and action, he ended up doing very little apart from being a second rate fighter at the back of the group, and then helping to carry Dion around when he was injured. And with this episode taking such pains to give Ariadne a decent role and skill set (including, apparently, archery and healing), Pythagoras had even less to do, as those things would probably have fallen into his remit if Ariadne wasn’t there. I know there are rumours of Pythagoras getting a plot that is a little more focussed on him later in the series, but right now he is being largely underused, which is a shame.
But most importantly... DION!!!!! Nooooooo!!!!!!! *sobs*
Let’s end with that scene of the boys around the campfire, just because.
Pythagoras: Perhaps this journey will end safely after all.
Pythagoras: If it does, I think we should find you another woman. There are other women.
Pythagoras: Hercules will find you one.
Hercules: Oh, yes, I’m spectacularly good at that kind of thing. Putting aside the fact that my love sits cursed in a cave, I’m happy to help.
Jason: Thank you, but I actually don’t think it’s such a bad thing being on your own.
Pythagoras: Oh absolutely. I agree.
Hercules: Have you ever known anything else?
Pythagoras: That’s beside the point.
Oh, boys. Never stop being this adorable.