Legendary Journeys
"Reunions" | Episodes of Hercules: TLJ | "Descent"

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Gilgamesh, Possessed by Dahak
Series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys
Season 5
Antagonist Gilgamesh, Dahak
Setting Sumeria
In-Universe Date Year 3
Production # V0708
Filming Dates 22 April to 1 May 1998
Original Air-Date 28 September 1998
Written By Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci
Directed By Michael Hurst
Episode Chronology
Order in Series 82 of 111
Order in Season 1 of 22
Order in Franchise 167 of 304
Previous Episode in Series "Reunions"
Next Episode in Series "Descent"
Previous Episode in Franchise "Amazon Grace"
Next Episode in Franchise "Adventures in the Sin Trade"
Title Image
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Hercules and Iolaus travel to Sumeria to aid a king persecuted by the deities, in company with Nebula who turns out to be a wandering Sumerian princess. King Gilgamesh, half-god like Hercules, needs the help of someone else with the blood of a deity to reach a chalice in which flows nectar that will revive the land.


The season starts out with mass destruction in the city of Sumeria. King Gilgamesh tries to save a young girl and destroys at statue of one of his gods. In the shelter, Gilgamesh tells them that the gods has turned against them and that he is sent for a hero from across the seas.

Hercules saves a child from falling into a well. Iolaus questions Hercules' theory on why the earth is round when a Sumerian priest named Imuru asks for his help. Iolaus learns of the Sumerian gods since Gilgamesh is the son of Ra, the sun god. The heroes plan to broaden their horizons.

The group gets a ride from Nebula. She has a little fight scene while the dynamic duo take a break. They learn that Nebula is Gilgamesh's half sister and hence, a princess. She does not like being a princess in Sumeria because she has no rights or power since she is female. On her ship, she is a queen. Iolaus and Nebula fight/flirt. She arm wrestles with one of her crew members and Imuru freaks out, because "that is no way for a princess to behave," so she sends the priest away. Hercules notices that Iolaus likes Nebula.

During the night, Hercules has a dream. It is about a body being burned for a funeral with a white robed man walking away. He turns and it is Hercules. "You're having doubts about what your doing, don't do?" The other Hercules says. He questions him about the borders of evil and the people he has lost. The figure holds a dagger to the skies. "I am the darkness that you hold closest to your heart." The skies turn red and Dahak's music plays. Hercules grips the dagger and bleeds. He wakes up, finding his hand bloody.

Hercules and Iolaus are introduced to King Gilgamesh, who explains that they need the sacred nectar of the gods to replenish the land, which is in a temple that only someone with god blood can get in to. Gilgamesh says that he lost his family while he was fighting for the gods. Nebula reunites with her brother. She is his family now. Hercules and Gilgamesh go to get the nectar while Iolaus and Nebula stay behind. She tries to help the people but since she is a woman, nobody will listen to her. Iolaus tells her to not take orders from anyone but herself and she gets people to join her to replenish the water supply. It works which really ticks Imuru off. Iolaus and Nebula are actually being nice to each other. Back in the palace, they say that they would miss each other when and if Iolaus ever goes back to Greece.

While on their journey, Hercules and Gilgamesh talk about their godhood heritage and how they wish they could of met sooner. The first trial is them climbing an upward pathway back to back. The next trial is to get to the other side of a canyon through flying in a whirlwind. Through blind faith, they make it. They find the chalice with the nectar in it and Gilgamesh knocks Hercules out and drinks the nectar until it is all gone. It causes a fire and Gilgamesh has burning yellow eyes. "Soon the world will tremble at the arrival of Dahak."

Gilgamesh explains that when he lost his family, he lost his faith in his gods and that the destruction is the cause of fighting between his gods and Dahak. Dahak is the darkness inside of Hercules's heart and with the sacrifice of a warrior's heart, he will come to earth. Back in the shelter, Gilgamesh puts a blocking power against Iolaus and takes Nebula for the sacrificing of a warrior's heart. Before the dagger strikes Nebula, Hercules arrives and battles with Gilgamesh. Iolaus gets free and rescues Nebula. She says that she loves him. Gilgamesh is possessed by a minion of Dahak (kind of like what happened to Khrafstar in the Deliverer). Imuru is possessed as well, but Iolaus kills him. Hercules takes quite a beating from Gilgamesh (possessed by Dahak). Gilgamesh throws the dagger at Nebula but Iolaus jumps in front of her and gets stabbed. Hercules kicks Gilgamesh into the fire the runs to Iolaus. Iolaus says Hercules's name then dies. He hugs his friend's body while Nebula cries.

Nebula tells Hercules that Iolaus' death was not his fault. Hercules says that Iolaus was his hero and walks away.


In order to protect the environment and for the benefit of all mankind, Imuru's beard was recycled and restored immediately upon completion of production of this motion picture.

Background Information[]

Key Events[]

  • Iolaus is killed in this episode, prompting a multi-episode story arc that would affect the entire season.

Behind the Scenes[]

  • Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci's first episode as showrunners. They remain in this role for the rest of Hercules' run. Kurtzman and Orci would later act as showrunners for thirteen episodes of Xena's fifth season ("Them Bones, Them Bones" through "Kindred Spirits") as well as Jack of All Trades for executive producer Rob Tapert.
  • In an attempt to believably portray Nebula as a Sumerian royal, all the Sumerians are portrayed as dark-skinned.
  • Ra receives his only televised mention. This isn't even close to accurate, as Ra was the supreme Egyptian god; An was the ruler of the Sumerian pantheon.


Memorable Quotations[]

"Well that's it. We go down in history as the guys who ticked off _all_ the gods"

"If something's worth doing, it's worth doing well- right?"

-Hercules and Iolaus- before leaving to go to Sumeria

"Hang in there, buddy."
"Sure you can. Come on."
"Hercules…" [dies]
"Come on. Don't you give up on me. Come on. Come on! Don't you give up on me!"

Hercules and Iolaus

"Where's Hercules?"
"The one god has been good to him."

Iolaus and Gilgamesh

"This is really gonna hurt."
"You took the words right out of my mouth."

Gilgamesh and Hercules

"There's nothing you can do to stop Dahak from entering our world. It's his destiny."
"And it's my destiny to shut you up."

Gilgamesh and Hercules

Links and References[]

Guest Starring[]



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