"All my life, I've told people that they can live without the gods. Now, I guess we'll find out."
|God Fearing Child|
Xena, baby Eve, Gabrielle and Hercules.
|Series||Xena: Warrior Princess|
|Antagonist||Zeus, Hades, Ares, Proxidicae|
|In-Universe Date||Year 5|
|Filming Dates||22 November to 1 December 1999|
|Original Air-Date||31 January 2000|
|Story By||Chris Manheim|
|Teleplay By||Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman|
|Directed By||Philip Sgriccia|
|Order in Series||102 of 134|
|Order in Season||12 of 22|
|Order in Franchise||271 of 304|
|Previous Episode in Series||"Punch Lines"|
|Next Episode in Series||"Eternal Bonds"|
|Previous Episode in Franchise||"Punch Lines"|
|Next Episode in Franchise||"Eternal Bonds"|
When The Fates decree that Xena's unborn child will bring about the Twilight of the Gods, Xena and Gabrielle brave the Underworld for the only thing that can hide them. Meanwhile, Hercules must make an alliance with his deadliest enemy to make the ultimate choice: his friends, or his father.
In the temple of the Fates, the Fates are tend to their loom, and inform Zeus and Hera learn that their time of ruling over humanity will soon come to an end when a child who is not begotten by man is born. Zeus is indignant by this, but the Fates are pretty adamant. Hera is uncharacteristically pensive.
While clearing up their campsite to set off, Xena tells Gabrielle to feel her stomach, where the baby is kicking. Gabrielle feels the baby kick and gasps as Xena laughs. Gabrielle says it was a dropkick just like mom, and Xena says we are not alone. Gabrielle says she dreamed last night that she and Xena were both having the baby, like it came from both of them. Xena smiles and says she would gladly give Gabrielle half the labor pains. Xena tells Gabrielle her child is going to change their lives completely, and Gabrielle stresses she will be more alert, but she is worried about its safety. Xena agrees, that they always find their fair share of trouble.
Having heard about Xena's pregnancy, Hercules arrives to congratulate her, Xena hugs Hercules saying it is good to see him, and then Hercules and Gabrielle hug, both noting how each other's hair is shorter since they last saw each other. Hercules presents them with a gift, bringing the child a stuffed hydra named for Iolaus. Moments after their reunion, they are ambushed by Proxidicae, soldiers in Zeus' secret guard, who reveal they are out to kill Xena and her unborn child.
Xena, Hercules, and Gabrielle temporarily ward off the attackers but know that Zeus won't be so easily defeated. Xena tries to kill one of them with her chakram but it only makes them stronger as Hercules explains to Xena and Gabrielle. So the three of them run off.
While retreating away, Xena decides she must go to Tartarus to get Hades's helmet of invisibility. Hercules decides to track down Zeus and find out why he is trying to harm Xena's baby. Before they pray, he warns Xena that if she gives birth while she is in Tartarus, the baby will be stillborn.
Xena and Gabrielle go to a lake, which is the way to the underworld. Xena worries that she won't be able to protect her child just as she was unable to protect her son Solan. Gabrielle says they both have regrets about Solan. But they'll dedicate their lives to making this child happy and protected.
Meanwhile, Hercules angrily confronts Zeus and Hera and lets them know that he will do everything in his power to protect Xena and her unborn baby. When Zeus says the child must die because humans need the gods, Hercules disagrees and says he will never call Zeus "Father" again. Hera tells Zeus that maybe the fates have decreed their destiny, and it is just their time. But Zeus disagrees and suggests that destiny is what they make it.
Meanwhile, Gabrielle and Xena fall from an opening and into Tartarus. They see some Proxidicare moving along and hide behind some rocks. Xena and Gabrielle wait for them to pass before moving along.
Zeus then turns to Ares to keep Hercules out of the way so that he can kill Xena. Allowing his resentment for Hercules to overcome his feelings for Xena, Ares agrees to deal with his brother as long as he can get rid of him permanently – Zeus reluctantly agrees.
As Hercules walks along. Ares appears, telling Hercules he has no idea how long he has waited for this. Hercules tells Ares, he doesn't care what Zeus thinks. Ares begins to throw a fireball, as Hercules ducks and it hits a tree. Ares makes another fireball appear, but his long-awaited vengeance is cut short, however, when Hera appears and knocks Ares unconscious. Hercules is highly suspicious of his stepmother's aid, but accepts her offer to lead him to a weapon that could destroy Zeus – a dagger made from Kronos's rib.
Meanwhile, Xena and Gabrielle make their way through Tartarus. They wind their way past a chamber of tormented souls who are reliving their past lives as their torture, Xena and Gabrielle are shocked to find Solan chained up as a prisoner in the underworld's cavern of eternal memory. He tells them he chose to be there so that he could watch the life he led with his mother, as painful as it is, is rather than live in ignorant bliss in the Elysian Fields.
Heartbroken, Xena frees Solan and the three set out to find the helmet. When they arrive in the throne room, Hades tells Xena he cannot allow her baby to bring about the end of the Olympian order and offers to spare Gabrielle and take Solan to the Elysian Fields if Xena surrenders. Not interested in any deal, Xena takes on the Proxidicae as Gabrielle puts on the helmet and disappears. Xena and Solan race off into the darkness.
Meanwhile, Hera explains to Hercules why she wants to help him find the Ribs of Kronos. She says she wants to fight by Hercules' side: their war is over. Hercules is skeptical. Hera tells a story about Kronos' rib cutting a hole in the sky to create the sun. Hera explains that once she forgave Zeus, she realized she is proud of humanity, whom she considers her children – and parents should never outlive their children.
Zeus wakes up Ares. When Zeus discovers Ares has failed him and that his own wife has turned against him, he sets out to kill Hercules and Xena himself. Hera leads Hercules to the cavern where Kronos is buried. Hercules tells her that although he can never forgive her for killing his family, he appreciates the danger she has put herself in to help him.
Meanwhile, Xena and Solan, running from Hades, bump into Ares in Tartarus. Ares confronts Xena and says he wants to protect Xena and her unborn child and confesses his love for her and offers to become mortal to avoid being killed when all the gods die, saying he wants to spend his life with her. Xena doesn't buy any of it. Xena and Solan run off down the passage. Ares says "I love you Xena" to the air.
Gabrielle catches up with Xena and Solan just as Xena starts experiencing labor pains. As Hades and his guards arrive, Xena gives the helmet to Solan and instructs him to run to the gate of the Elysian Fields. In a furious battle, Xena and Gabrielle temporarily thwart Hades and the Proxidicae, after which Xena says goodbye to her son who has crossed through the gateway. Another painful contraction sends Xena and Gabrielle hurrying out of Tartarus.
Back in Kronos's tomb, Hercules pulls a rib from his grandfather's grave just as Zeus arrives and starts blazing fireballs at him. Hera distracts Zeus while Hercules rushes off to find Xena. Furious with her betrayal, Zeus kills his wife with the kiss of death.
Back in the temple of The Fates. They say the child's time is near, and unless Zeus prevents its arrival, the Greek gods are doomed.
Xena and Gabrielle are again attacked by by Proxidicae. Hercules arrives in time to join in the fight, and throws Xena the rib of Kronos which allows Xena to easily kill the Proxidicae. Gabrielle, Xena and Hercules look for a safe place so Xena can give birth. Xena tells Gabrielle to leave so she won't get in the crossfire between her and Zeus if Hercules doesn't stop his father. Gabrielle says she isn't going anywhere.
Zeus shows up and he throws lightning bolts at Hercules. In order to protect Xena, Hercules is forced into a ruthless battle with Zeus. Gabrielle tries to talk about when Ephiny had her baby and Xena tells her to be quiet. The baby is being born and Zeus sees the child's birth and goes to throw a lightning bolt at it, Hercules grabs Kronos' Rib and stabs his father with it.
Xena gives birth to a beautiful baby girl who is destined to change the planet. Zeus says even though Hercules said he would no longer call Zeus Father, Hercules will always be his son and he is proud of him, "Never moreso than today." Zeus dies, turning to dust, while Hercules screams "Father."
Dark clouds roll over the sun, as Xena holds Eve. The Earth begins to shake as Lightning flashes. Dark clouds start to form around The Fates Hall as Ares looks at his hands, seeing that he is still very much alive and well despite what the Fates said and shrugs. The sun shines and a new day is about to begin following the deaths of Zeus and Hera.
A while later, Xena holds the baby next to Gabrielle, while Hercules sits with them. Xena says she is sorry about Zeus, Hercules tells Xena he has always told people they can live without the gods and now the people can find out if he was right. Hercules tells Xena her newborn daughter is beautiful and asks if she thought of a name and Xena says Solan named the baby Eve when they were in Tartarus. Hercules gets up and Gabrielle follows him, allowing Xena time alone with her child. She looks at Eve and say that they will all be together: her, Eve and Solan. As she turns to the sky, hoping the message will be conveyed to Solan.
"Zeus cashed in his chips during the production of this motion picture."
Behind the Scenes
- This episode was shot after Lucy had given birth to her son in real life.
- In addition to wrapping up the pregnancy storyline, this episodes serves as a coda for Hercules: The Legendary Journeys.
- Writer/showrunners Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci had previously acted as showrunners for Seasons 5 and 6 of Hercules.
- Stephen Lovatt replaces Erik Thomson as Hades.
- Erik Thomson was asked to reprise his previous role of Hades but was unavailable because he was a regular on an Australian TV Show All Saints at the time.
- This is the only episode of Xena's pregnancy stint that Lucy Lawless was not actually pregnant during. It is also the first episode of Season Five that Xena herself was not pregnant.
- Hercules's hair is much shorter in this episode than was ever seen before, as Kevin had apparently gotten a haircut after HTLJ ended.
- On The Season Five DVD Set, Lucy Lawless revealed in interviews on the shooting of this episode and birth of Eve, “I think I was back to work on [this episode] one month after having my baby and I really think it’s too soon to be jumping off boxes… Giving birth in film is not like giving birth in real life obviously. It’s much easier, much quicker… There are moments in the birth scene that are well documented things that happen during labor [like] you’re cold and then you’re hot and then you have the ‘transition tantrum,’ it’s called where your body kicks into another gear. And women very often turn around and [growl] at whoever’s trying to help them. It’s actually a good sign; it means you’re moving on. And so there’s a little bit of that in the scene where Gabrielle’s trying to help and Xena tells her to shut up.” 
- In the June 2000 issue of Chakram (#11), the newsletter of the Official Xena Fan Club, writer Chris Manheim revealed that Hercules was not always part of the "God Fearing Child" story. In the first draft, Hercules was not in it. Xena and Amarice were busy trying to fend off Zeus. It was Gabrielle and Joxer who went to the Underworld to get the Helmet of Invisibility so Xena could give birth and be invisible doing it. Solan was not in this early version, he was an element added to give weight to the mother/son story with Xena. 
- This episode and season marks the final appearance of Hercules, not only on Xena: Warrior Princess, but in the entire Xenaverse.
- This will also be the final Hercules & Xena crossover episode and in the season.
- This episode marks the death and final appearance of Zeus in the Xenaverse.
- This episode marks the death and final appearance of Hera in the Xenaverse. She is mentioned in later episodes as having "disappeared", since Zeus didn't have time to tell anyone he killed her and Hercules and Ares were never quite sure of her fate.
- This episode marks the birth of Eve and her first appearance.
- This episode marks the final appearance of Solan.
- This episode introduces yet another object that can kill gods - the Ribs of Kronos. The others are the Dagger of Helios, Hind's Blood, the Chakram of Light and later Xena herself.
- Hercules kills Zeus in this episode. According to the pattern established by Greek mythology (which Zeus actually mentions), this would make Hercules the new king of the Greek gods. Hercules does not appear and is barely mentioned again, with Athena essentially taking over Olympus.
- So starting with the second half of the fifth season and the sixth and final season of XWP, There are no crossover episodes of Hercules and Xena as of the departures of Hercules, Iolaus, Salmoneus, Zeus, Hera, and Autolycus.
- Ares states that Hades is his brother, when in fact Hades is Zeus's brother, making him Ares's uncle.
- Chakram Count: 1
- To kill a Proxidicae.
- The Chakram was also used to send an energy ball back at Hades.
- Hercules named the stuffed hydra toy for Xena's baby "Iolaus" – a nod to his partner and best friend who made his final appearance in the sixth and final season of the HTLJ episode Full Circle who decided to either retireor head for his next adventure with Hercules.
- The lesson that "parents should never outlive their children" Hera mentions references her killing Hercules' family in "The Wrong Path".
- The Underworld seems to be a lot different to how it was in Mortal Beloved: Xena and Gabrielle did not have to cross the River Styx, the Helmet of Invisibility was not situated out in the open and the entrance to the Elysian Fields did require walking the smokey cave entrance.
- Ares mentions Zeus' "watchful eye over Hercules". Young Hercules (and episodes of Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Young Hercules) made it clear that Zeus had forbid the other Olympians from directly trying to kill Hercules and had provided him with special protection.
- Although not an Ares-centric episode, both of Ares's major relationships in the Xenaverse are brought full circle: he finally confronts Zeus directly over his favoritism for Hercules and he finally admits that he loves Xena.
- Although the story is original, it deals with two major themes of Greek mythology:
- The inevitability of children supplanting their parents, as shown when Hercules killed Zeus (as Zeus killed Cronus and Cronus killed Uranus).
- The pain of parents outliving their children, which Hercules and Xena both know well and Hera hopes to avoid.
"You may have sworn never to call me 'Father' again, but you will always be my son."
"This didn't have to happen!"
"Every son must eventually take his father's place, like I did mine. Hercules, you have never disappointed me… especially today."
- –Zeus and Hercules
"You have no idea how glad I am to see you again."
"And you don't know how little I give a damn."
- –Ares and Hercules
"This is not about you and me – it's about survival!"
- –Zeus to Hercules
"Do you really believe that humanity can survive without gods?"
"Yes, I do."
"You have the blood of a god, Hercules. This could mean your death as well."
"I also have the blood of a mortal. I'll take my chances."
"Reconsider. You've always held a special place in my heart, Hercules, but it's a place that can as easily be filled by your loving memory."
(a beat) "I don't think I'll be calling you 'Father' anymore."
- –Zeus and Hercules
(to Gabrielle) "We do seem to find our share of trouble."
"Yeah, like the big trouble you found when you forgot to tell an old friend of yours you were about to have a baby."
"Hey, old friend, did you hear that I'm about to have a baby?"
- –Xena and Hercules
"Six behind you."
"Six behind you. Care to dance?"
- –Hercules and Xena
"Oh. Oh, you are a real piece of work. You know that? You want me to keep Hercules busy so you don't have to kill him. Meantime, you intend to murder a woman I'm rather fond of."
"So fond of her as to bring about your own death? That's exactly what will happen if this child is born."
"No. No deal. That is, unless, of course you're willing to offer me something in return."
"You have always kept a watchful eye over Hercules. Well, now I'm asking you to turn the other way while I do what I have to to stop him."
"You're asking for my permission to kill my own son?!"
"WHAT IS IT ABOUT HIM YOU HAVE NEVER SEEN IN ME?!"
"Aw, it's not just you. He has managed to do something that we gods have tried and failed to accomplish. He's earned humanity's love in every gesture, except fear."
"And Xena has earned mine, so I guess we both have something to lose. Well, 'Dad,' what's it gonna be?"
- –Ares and Zeus
"I never thought I'd say this: I believe you. But how can I be sure you aren't gonna change your mind?"
"Because of a lesson I regret teaching you long ago, Hercules. Parents should never outlive their children."
- –Hercules and Hera
"You're so desperate. You're trying to convince me that you love me. Well, go on. Say it. Say it. Say you love me. The time for you and me has been and gone."
"It was worth a shot anyway. I thought in your present condition you might be a little more gullible."
"I am pregnant, not brain-damaged." (she, Gabrielle and Solan leave)
"I love you, Xena."
- –Xena and Ares
"So, it's come to this."
"This isn't gonna end well for either of us, but I'm ready to live with what I have to do."
"If you live."
- –Zeus and Hercules
"We're gonna be together now Eve...you and me and your brother, forever and ever."
- -Xena to her newborn daughter Eve
Links and References
- Charles Keating as Zeus
- Kevin Smith as Ares
- Meg Foster as Hera
- And Kevin Sorbo as Hercules
- Stephen Lovatt as Hades
- Nicko Vella as Solan
- Uncredited as Clotho
- Uncredited as Lachesis
- Uncredited as Atropos
- Uncredited as Eve
- Rib of Kronos
- Helmet of Invisibility
- Mortal Beloved (Events Mentioned)
- Is There a Doctor in the House? (Events Mentioned)
- The Wrong Path (Events Mentioned)
- Full Circle (Events Mentioned)
|<< Season 4||Season 5||Season 6 >>|
|#01||Fallen Angel||#09||Seeds of Faith||#17||Kindred Spirits|
|#02||Chakram||#10||Lyre, Lyre, Hearts on Fire||#18||Antony & Cleopatra|
|#03||Succession||#11||Punchlines||#19||Looking Death in the Eye|
|#04||Animal Attraction||#12||God Fearing Child||#20||Livia|
|#05||Them Bones, Them Bones||#13||Eternal Bonds||#21||Eve|
|#06||Purity||#14||Amphipolis Under Siege||#22||Motherhood|
|#07||Back in the Bottle||#15||Married with Fishsticks|