Season 1, episode 13
Gabrielle and Xena part company so that Gabrielle can audition for the Athens City Academy of the Performing Bards at their annual storytelling competition.
Gabrielle is approached by a gentle young man named Orion (Dean O’Gorman), who has watched her enthral a crowd with tales of Xena’s many heroic deeds. Orion asks if she’s planning to participate in the Bard Competition at the Athens City Academy of the Performing Bards. On hearing that the top four contestants will be admitted as students to the Academy, Gabs decides to audition, especially after Orion’s father Polonius (Graham Moore) tells her that the Academy is definitely not for young ladies.
This was a clip show plain and simple. There were clips used from the classic movie ‘Spartacus’ which did lend so some fun moments with the manic storyteller. Having faked her way into the Academy, Gabrielle fits comfortably into her role as “Xena’s Bard.” She who must go before the crowd and defend Xena’s good side, playing down wherever possible the evil that she’s done.
At 13 episodes in, I was quite surprised that Gabs would up and leave Xena to pursue a dream Luckily, the experience at the Academy made her realise that her place was by Xena’s side documenting her stories, being her PR manager and spokesman.
Disclaimer: “The producers would like to acknowledge and pay tribute to Stanley Kubrick, Kirk Douglas and all those who were involved with the making of the film classic ‘Spartacus’. Additional thanks to Steve Reeves.”