This review contains spoilers.
2.9 The Gorgon’s Gaze
Let’s start, as ever, with a recap of this week’s action.
With Pasiphae now in a position of power, the Gods have warned that they are angry and have spoken through new Oracle, Cassandra. Unhappy with the condemnation of her actions, Pasiphae is advised that the solution is clear – get Ariadne to pass on the crown and kill the young queen.
There’s little joy in the heroes’ camp, either, as Jason, Pythagoras and Medusa fight inner turmoil as they realise the insurmountable task they face if they wish to save Ariadne and the fate of Atlantis.
Refusing to break under pressure, Ariadne fears for her life as Pasiphae threatens her body, then her life, with Medea using her knowledge of the dark arts to torture the queen, whilst Pasiphae uses more conventional methods to break the one guard loyal to Ariadne.
Believing that she had caused the darkness that has been visited upon Atlantis, Medusa has a plan of her own and plots with Pythagoras to return the unlikely hero to the city in search of something that will save the day… Pandora’s Box!
Completing his mission, with help from Daedalus the inventor, Pythagoras returns and discovers the true reason he was sent to get back the Box. Medusa intends to sacrifice her humanity to save Atlantis.
Given the opportunity to save his beloved, Jason is reluctant to let Medusa go through with her plan, but finally sees the pain that she feels and the extent of what he must do, as the only person impervious to her gaze, in order to redeem her.
As Hercules discovers the truth, Jason launches his one-man attack on Atlantis and Pasiphae comes face to face with her son.
The Gorgon’s Gaze works as more of a character piece than an action adventure. The whole cast bring emotion to the episode and drive home the drama of the story. Sarah Parish and Aiysha Hart go head to head and it’s a joy to behold; the bitter yet reasonable voice of evil, taking on the defiant voice of justice. Robert Emms offers balance as Pythagoras, whilst Mark Addy has a touch of comedy but brings pathos to the role of Hercules, a trait that hasn’t been used often enough for the character. Jack Donnelly is on form, once more, as Jason – no longer required to leap around and look smouldering, he’s embraced the dramatic character.
Robert Lindsay steps in as the “star of the week” in the role of Daedalus, father of Icarus. The part sounds like it was written for him, with customary Lindsay delivery for each witty barb and line. His role may be small, but it is integral to the story and it would be a disappointment if he were not to reappear in the next few weeks.
The final twenty minutes, from the scene with Jemima Rooper and Mark Addy, as she ensures that Hercules can’t ruin her plan are heartbreakingly scripted, scored and performed. As truths are revealed, hearts broken and Jason’s wrath is felt, the final moments of the episode are the proverbial icing on the cake as The Gorgon’s Gaze ends and leaves the viewer wanting more!
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