Not sure, the humor and camp is part and parcel of Xena: Warrior Princess. When it A Day in the Life works, it shines. When it Married with Fishsticks stumbles, it reeks. And then there is In Sickness and in Hell’s unhealthy obsession with bodily functions …
Take the towel fight, followed by soaking in the stream. I see it as an extension of their sparring, trading the sharp, pointy weapons for something less deadly but more humiliating. In Hooves and Feathers Part One, Xena and Gabrielle go toe to toe and Warrior Princess wins. You just know it will not end there; the bard will get hers. And she does here.
This incident happens in fun; same with the black sheep. Notice that Athena and Xena lead the ganging up on Joxer; Gabrielle has a part but leads in sympathy. The bard naturally goes for the underdog
Teasing the woolly Xena reinforces a message of exclusivity and boundaries. Taken in that light, the Warrior Princess’ allowance of continued confidences is wrong and needs to stop. This being Gabrielle, the means of delivery is gentle yet firm. Forgiveness follows in application of ointment. So bard.
While the initial appearance leads to a different conclusion, upon further reflection the comedy passes muster. It has a job to do and it does it well. More, it does right by the characters. Discuss in FORUMS.
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