Hercules: The Legendary Journeys

Season 3 Episode 17

Les Contemptibles

Aired Monday 5:00 PM Apr 07, 1997 on USA
out of 10
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37 votes

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Episode Summary

Les Contemptibles

The year was 1789, but Count Francois Demarigny was not interested in joining the French Revolution, he just wanted the Lady Marie deValle's money. He pretended to be the Chartreuse Fox, and his comrades Jean-Pierre and Robert pretended to be highwaymen. But the Lady Marie outsmarted them, for she herself was the Chartreuse Fox. When she was captured by the Frenchgendarmes and taken to the guillotine, tales of Hercules - champion of the common man - inspired Robert and his friends to take action. They freed Marie, gave strength to the peasants and vowed to continue fighting injustice.


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  • Troyes, France: 1789 – Marie de Valle makes a deal with a man claiming to be the infamous Revolutionary Chartreuse Fox to try an turn two highwaymen into fellow Revolutionary fighters. But no-one is as they seem. I want to like this ep but it's not great.moreless

    This episode is a break from the norm of the series, being set during the French revolution. It is in the same vein of 'Xena: Warrior Princess'' popular 1940s-set episode 'The Xena Scrolls'. However, whereas 'The Xena Scrolls' has a definite charm to it, sadly I find this episode to be very messy and not as much fun as it should be. I really want to like it more than I do, but find it hard to do so for various reasons.

    The episode follows the template set by 'The Xena Scrolls' of using an unusual time-period surrounding as the basis for what is essentially as clip show. They obviously had a lot of fun filming it, but as I say, it doesn't completely work on-screen, and is not the minor classic that it might have been.

    Marie de Valle is played by Danielle Cormack, who plays the recurring role of Amazon Ephiny in 'Xena: Warrior Princess'. She fits into the episode well, seeing as she's usually more at home on 'Xena'.

    Being set in France, the actors get to try out French accents with varying success (the producers toyed with the idea whether to just do it in American or not). Michael Hurst sounds pretty spot on, and Robert Trebor and Danielle Cormack are reasonable, but Kevin Sorbo's for the most part is rather questionable!

    One fun thing with the accents in this episode though, is that at points a character will say something in a really deep French accent, then give up and just do it in American!

    I think part of the reason this episode isn't as great as it might have been, is due to the fact that the characters aren't really all that likeable. It is not until the climax of the story, that I started to remotely warm to them.

    I think the thing that let this episode down was the script. It was a great idea for a clip show surrounding, and they obviously loved filming it, but the script is messy, as well as – as I mentioned – not having overly likable characters until quite late on.moreless

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