Atlantis series 2 episode 4 review: The Marriage Of True Minds

It's a darker episode for Atlantis this week, but a well-written and strongly acted one. Here's Dave's review...

This review contains spoilers.

2.4 The Marriage Of True Mind

Let’s begin with a short recap of tonight’s action. Having failed to secure Atlantis for herself, Pasiphae is worshipping the dark gods and it’s revealed, in short order, that Telemon is working with the wicked woman. He’s been promised a place in her court when she comes to power as long as he leads Ariadne to her death.

Convincing Ariadne that he needs his father’s blessing for the marriage, Telemon manages to draw the Queen out of the court, much to the concern of Jason. Unable to convince her she’s doing the wrong thing, Jason, Pythagoras and Hercules set out to ensure the Queen remains safe and join the retinue that will escort her.

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As chaos ensues, Telemon seizes the opportunity to attack, though has second thoughts, leaving Ariadne betrayed and endangered and Pasiphae enraged.

As Jason tries to get Ariadne to safety, they encounter assistance in the form of Orpheus – a man who sees more than most – who gives Ariadne some home truths.

With Pasiphae in pursuit, there’s no choice but to enter the Necropolis, but fears and tensions are running high on both sides and tragedy strikes.

Adding Ronald Pickup to the episode in the role of Orpheus and Sian Thomas as Eurydice brings real strength to the acting in this week’s episode, boosting that which is already there in the form of Sarah Parish and Mark Addy. The younger cast definitely benefit from this and it gives the onscreen performances more gravitas.

Aiysha Hart’s performance – torn between doing the right thing for Ariadne and Atlantis – is Hart at her best, whilst the rest of the principle cast are on form. The chaste stand-off between Hart’s Ariadne and Jack Donnelly’s Jason sees both actors treading the fine line between would-be lovers and close friends. For the past few episodes, Amy Manson’s Medea has been side-by-side with Pasiphae, saying little but having an impact in her silence, whilst Vincent Regan finally gets some good screen time as the injured Dion.

The episode is beautifully shot, particularly so during the scene of Ariadne preparing to leave Atlantis. The soundtrack, especially during this moment, has an epic quality. The tension builds around the trek to their destination, with much made of the dark forest and the treacherous path they travel. With the camera work at its best, and the acting above par, the writing brings it all together with a script that is tense and touching.

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Whilst the close combat may be a touch choreographed, the attack in the gorge feels much more intense thanks to the choatic filming as a rain of arrows pours from the sky. As the men are slaughtered by archers, little of the violence is shown, but it leaves us in no doubt that the numbers are overwhelming and our heroes are at risk!

Much of this episode has a dark tone to it, with emotional games being played between Jason, Telemon, Pasiphae and Ariadne, and with Pythagoras and Hercules all too aware of what is happening and what is at stake. Roughly a third of the way through series 2 of Atlantis, The Marriage of Two Minds is another foray into the strong writing that has benefitted the series.

Read Dave’s review of the previous episode, Telemon, here.

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