Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Tuesdays With Phineas Redux

'Xena Redux', or should that be 'Redivivus'?

Pre-title opening sequence, short quick edits—Gabrielle and Xena go to Japa, where Xena is killed. After many adventures Gabrielle, full of sorrow, goes off on her own to carry on Xena’s work. Then Gabrielle wakes up at their campsite in the sunshine of a new day beside a rivulet in the Grecian countryside, and standing beside her is the tall dark form of Xena: it was all a bad dream. Que TV opening titles—‘Xena, Warrior Princess’, Series Seven.

Japa never happened. The back-story that Xena gave for her actions in Japa was all fantasy. It was a dream, and now Gabrielle has Xena with her to go on happily into the future. Only this time things will be different.

No more bandying around making faint hints about their sexuality. The duo are a duo from now on, enjoying their sexuality and partnership openly; within reason, of course. No more grotesque episodes like ‘Fishsticks’. No more musical episodes. No more chasing badly-acted warlords across the steppes. No more hilarious episodes where Gabrielle falls in love with some dude from the sticks. No more over-the-top episodes where mad Gods take the warrior women to fantastic landscapes to battle unknown terrors, just on the Gods’ whim. No more anachronistic meetings with various Roman Emperors. No twenty-five year ice gap. No Eve/Livia. No Eli wannabe’s. Absolutely no more crucifixions. And no more heart-wrenching story-arcs where Xena breaks with Gabrielle, or Gabrielle breaks with Xena, for long periods filled with angst, horror, despair, and tragedy. In fact, everything from now on is going to be rosy.

In Series Seven the story lines will be those of a serial. That is, not a series. The difference being that the same plot, characters, and purpose follow through the entire twenty-one episodes, until the final satisfying climax is reached. Although there will be moments when separate escapades side-track the women warriors, during the course of the wider adventure. There may be tears, smiles, and narrow escapes, along the way; but in the end all will come right for our happy duo.

Ares’ activities, and the actions of most of the other Gods, will have to be toned down or even dispensed with. Joxer will appear, but in a slightly more realistic and serious characterisation. Most stories will be more reality based, than formally; but the same madcap atmosphere will remain, no matter what Xena and Gabrielle get up to. There will be fewer Uber ventures; but these will concentrate solely on Mel and Janice, who will have a short story-arc to themselves.

Gabrielle will be the blonde short-haired Amazon Queen, with expertise and capabilities almost equalling Xena. She will have lost that earlier fear and horror of killing people, which motivated her in her innocent youth; but will still be more controlled in this regard than Xena. Gabrielle will still have a dress sense to die for. Xena will no longer look down on, or deprecate, her colleague’s abilities; but regard her as an equal partner.

The stories will be stronger, and better written. The sets will be bigger and more expensive. There will be money to afford huge crowds of extra’s. It will all be shot in 16:9, on HD equipment with Blu-ray definition. The series will continue to be made in New Zealand; though with expeditions to other worldwide settings, as the story-line requires. There will be one sole Director throughout the series, thus ensuring a smooth continuity; unlike former series where the numerous Directors only succeeded in watering down the strength of the underlying ambience and concept within the series.

Of course, both the original stars of the series will return in triumph; taking the show to greater heights of success than it had ever achieved before. There will be at least two spin-off shows; ‘Mel & Janice’, and ‘Gabrielle, Amazon Queen’; both going on to individual success. There will be a ‘Xena’ movie which, like the Bond or Bourne franchises, is internationally acclaimed; sanctioning numerous follow-ups. And, of course, there will be frantically awaited, and equally successful, TV Series Eight & Series Nine, etc, ad infinitum. In fact, there really isn’t any reason why the show doesn’t then carry on forever, gaining awards and critical acclaim with each succeeding series!


“Aaarh! The sun’s bright this morning.” Phineas wakes up, groggily as usual. “Yaaawn! Another day, another dollar, I suppose. —Oh Gods! I’ve been dreaming again! Oh, damn!”

~Phineas Redux~

Story Recommendation:
The Shetland Bus By Phineas Redux
This is an Uberfic set in Great Britain in 1942. Zena Mathews, a young New Zealand woman, and her navigator Gabrielle Parker now work as pilots for a secret British Government organisation, part of SOE—Special Operations Executive. They fly on a mission involving fishing-boats; secret meetings out in the North Sea; spies; gun-running; and difficulties in piloting their Supermarine Walrus.

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