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Cradle of Hope Reviewed

Xena and Gabrielle find a baby-Moses style in a basket in the reeds by a river. They also meet Pandora - although not the original one - and her box. This episode features Xena`s exotic dancing and a very memorable and a funny scene where Xena gets information Mata Hari fashion from the chief baddie, Nemos, excellently played by Simon Prast, who is a good old fashioned sneering smug nasty. There is also a hilarious baby throwing final fight scene - sounds daft but it is this great tongue in cheek humour that makes the series so good. A strong story that has a number of nice twists and turns involving Pandora`s box and Xena`s working out of a strange prophesy involving the infant. Lucy Lawless really did that fire eating/blowing herself by the way. This was one of my favourites of the first series. I liked the multi layered story, and those scenes that I mentioned. The biblical theme (Moses-baby in the bullrushes), and the mythology theme(Pandora) arise quite often in future episodes to varying degrees of success. It is a feature of both Hercules and Xena that at times, they use well known Greek legends, or other stories. It makes the characters seem more real somehow, to think of them interacting with well known characters like the Gods, Prometheus, Ulysses, Daedelus or Pandora. I think it worked particularly well here, as this is a very well written story. Comedy, action, drama. A good one.

This was the first episode to feature a disclaimer - worth straining your eyes to see as they are often very funny.

"No babies were harmed during the production of this motion picture."

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