Monday, December 30, 2013

My Review of Atlantis's 1x13: "Touched By The Gods Part 2"

Written by Howard Overman
Directed by Jeremy Webb

Pasiphae (re Jason): “Who is he to you?”
Tychon: “He’s our son. He is touched by the gods as you are. He’s your blood.”

I will give the show credit where it is definitely due – I did not see that particular reveal coming at all. After the annoying missed opportunity that was otherwise known as Circe, this show has another chance to layer Pasiphae as a character now that we know that Jason is her son and that Tychon was the man who fathered him and became a leper at Pasiphae’s hand. Howard Overman, please milk this for all it’s worth.

The reveal might have been done in a style that wouldn’t have been out of place in any soap but it’s an excellent storytelling possibility as well. Tychon needled Pasiphae about whether or not she’d be able to kill her own son and the Oracle seemed to delight in pointing out that Jason would bring about her downfall.

The question now remains – will Pasiphae kill Jason? Will maternal love overrule the desire for total power of Atlantis? Whatever path Pasiphae ultimately ends up taking, it’s nice that might finally mean that Sarah Parish will get more to do for the next series. I’ve wanted Pasiphae to become a more interesting villain and now it looks like I might get my wish after all.

Of course there’s still work that needs to be done with Pasiphae. In this episode alone she failed twice to kill Ariadne and incurred Minos’s wrath as well when her attempts of bumping him off were stopped at the last minute by Melas. It’s going to be interesting to see what Pasiphae’s standing within the kingdom will next series. I’m sure attempted murder on your stepdaughter is more than enough grounds for either execution or perhaps divorce. I guess it will depend on Minos’s mood though.

Speaking of Minos, I was actually shocked to see him survive this episode. I was certain he was going to be a goner but then the episode only went and bumped off both Ramos and Heptarian instead. I liked that Ramos’s loyalty to the kingdom helped save the day partially, even if he died because of it.

As for Heptarian – he might not have been the nicest of characters but it’s a shame we’re losing him though. I enjoyed his rivalry with Jason and while I was glad it was the latter who killed him off, I do think the character’s death at least could’ve been held off until the second series. Oh well, hopefully Jason will get another rival next series but at least Heptarian’s death was an actual shock though.

The least shocking things about the episode though happened to be Ariadne surviving, which was actually fine by me because she was both likeable and actually pretty useful in the episode and the reveal of Tychon as Jason’s father. The trailer had pretty much ruined the latter having any shock value but at least he survived the episode and was wonderfully played by John Hannah as well. Bonuses on all counts then.

As for Pythagoras and Hercules – there wasn’t really much they did that stood out individually. Mainly they were there to support Jason, help rescue Ariadne, befriend lepers and do battle with some soldiers and even Ariadne was better at that than they were. However instead of that being a problem, I think it actually helped the plot just this one. That being said, Pythagoras does need to do more next series though.

Also in “Touched By The Gods Part 2”

What the odds that Ione will end up being killed at the start of next series? Pasiphae will definitely shift the blame onto her.

Hercules (to Jason): “You think you’ll die a hero’s death? You will achieve nothing and die a fool.”

Hercules’s ranking of likes – 1) Medusa 2) wine and pies 3) Pythagoras and 4) Jason. I think that’s about right, isn’t it?

Jason (to the Oracle): “Keep praying. Chances are we’re all going to die.”

Jason: “Are you hurt?”
Ariadne: “I thought I’d never see you again.”

The brazen bull method of dying was actually a real thing. Ariadne should count herself lucky she didn’t get to suffer that fate after all.

Hercules: “Thank you Hercules for saving my life again.”
Pythagoras: “I fear you will take my life if you don’t get off me.”

Tychon (to Pasiphae): “I don’t believe you can kill your own son.”

It’s lucky that this show’s renewal was already made weeks before because the ratings for this last episode was less than four million.

The Oracle: “It is your own future that should concern you?”
Pasiphae: “What do you see?”
The Oracle: “Your paths are as one. The day will come when Jason will destroy you.”

Chronology: From where the first part of this episode more or less left off.

Let’s be honest – this show as a collective whole has been a largely mixed bag with some flashes of greatness and a lot of moments that were a source of contention. In some ways, “Touched By The Gods Part 2” really should be the start of the show coming into it’s own and improving but unless the writers address a lot of what went wrong with the series and fast, it’s chances of going beyond the hastily commissioned second series probably aren’t high.

Rating: 7 out of 10

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