Hercules: The Legendary Journeys

Season 4 Episode 21

Top God

Aired Monday 5:00 PM May 04, 1998 on USA
out of 10
User Rating
34 votes

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Episode Summary

Top God

Upon Alcmene's death, Zeus asked Hercules to join him in ruling the Gods of Olympus. Hercules, still bitter toward his father, couldn't decide. He recalled meeting Apollo, his half-brother, years ago. Apollo gave him Ambrosia, which transformed him into a full God. But Zeus chastised his son, saying he was never destined for full Godhood. Chagrined, Hercules relinquished his new powers but still fought Apollo to a draw. He then saved young Ariadne from Apollo's treachery. This recollection resolved Hercules' indecision: He agreed to join Zeus on Mount Olympus, where he could do the most good for mankind.


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  • With his mother Alcmene passed away, Hercules is asked by estranged father Zeus to join him ruling the Gods of Olympus, causing him to recall a teenage brush with Godliness and the brash God Apollo. A fairly good episode...moreless

    Yet another Young Hercules episode. Not that that's a bad thing – I have really come to like Ian Bohen as young Herc. But surely even the most casual of viewer must by now have come to notice that there is a distinct lack of action from the 'modern day' Hercules in this half of the season.

    Apollo is a beach-blonde, hover skateboarding (someone must have been watching 'Back to the Future part II'!) and rather obnoxious God. Oh great, another 'God with modern parallels'. But in terms of forming the story, he's actually not too bad.

    As Apollo introduces Hercules to his temple and taking Ambrosia, there are distinct parallels with modern day clubs and drug taking.

    Considering how level-headed the teenage Hercules is, as we've witness in previous episodes, I wasn't quite convinced by how quickly he was in following Apollo's lead and taking Ambrosia.

    I'm not sure where the five TV movie version of Zeus, as played by Anthony Quinn, fits in to the current storyline, as a lot of the time it is suggested that Hercules had had nothing to do with him other than a brief meeting as a teenager. It seems quite at odds to Herc and irascible and generally quite kindly old father that we saw in the TV movies.

    This is the last time Ian Bohen plays Young Hercules – apparently, he didn't want to commit to the spin-off series due to the time he would have to spend away in New Zealand filming. Ryan Gosling took over the role for the series.

    All-in-all, quite a good episode, and a good build up to the season finale.moreless
Ian Bohen

Ian Bohen

Young Hercules

Guest Star

Roy Dotrice

Roy Dotrice


Guest Star

Chris Conrad

Chris Conrad

Young Jason

Guest Star

Jeffrey Thomas

Jeffrey Thomas


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • Ian Bohen makes his last appearance as young Hercules, before Ryan Gosling takes over the role. Bohen chose not to continue with the role due to the amount of time he would be in New Zealand filming. This is also the only original Young Hercules episode without Dean O'Gorman (young Iolaus).

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Zeus: You learned a lot that day.
      Hercules: I learned a lot about myself. I wanted to be something I wasn't. Being a full God was not for me.
      Zeus: No, not then.
      Hercules: Were you disappointed that I turned my back on being a God? Turned my back on you?
      Zeus: I, um, I was never more proud. But you had other lessons to learn- a life to live. You could see that even then.

    • Zeus: If you were meant to be a God, you would have been born a God. You are what you were meant to be- what the Fates destined you to be.
      Young Hercules: You're mad. I finally figured out a way to get your attention, and you're mad.
      Zeus: Oh, you got my attention all right, but I don't know if you're gonna like it.
      Young Hercules: I'm really sorry that the first time we met was like this. I can't help that now.
      Zeus: Well, I wouldn't waste time feeling sorry for yourself.
      Young Hercules: Not only for me. I feel every bit as sorry for you.

    • Zeus: Your mother is gone. You have no more family left here. It's time for you to take your rightful place.
      Hercules: And that would be?
      Zeus: By my side, ruling the Gods of Olympus.

    • Jason: If he's Apollo, how is it I can see him?
      Apollo: Eh, if ya got it, flaunt it.

  • NOTES (1)


    • In Greek mythology, Hercules did become an Olympian God, but this took place after his own death. His funeral pyre burned away the part of him that was mortal, and the immortal half was raised up to become the God of Strength. He then married the lesser Goddess Hebe (Youth), who was the cupbearer for the Goddesses of Olympus.

    • In Greek mythology Momus is the God of satire, mockery, censure, as well as writers, poets. He is the patron of evil-spirited blame and unfair criticism.