1.12 - Battle Lines II

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Screencap
Title Battle Lines II
Episode # Season 1, Episode 12
First aired October 2, 1998
Directed by Charlie Haskell
Written by Brooks Wachtel
Summary Hercules has to find a way to stop the war between the Amazons and the Centaurs before it's too late. Ep 2 of 2.

FoxKids Spoilers

  • With the facts distorted by lies,tempers flaring, and two armies poised to flight, Hercules is running out of time to avert a war between the Centaurs and the Amazons. Can he find the missing soldiers, unravel the mystery, and get back to the battlefield before the first drop of blood is shed?
  • Hercules, Iolaus and Lilith are caught in the middle when Cyane (Katrina Browne) leads her Amazons against Cheiron's fellow centaurs in a battle royale.

TV Guide Promo

  • Hercules and his friends run out of time as the war between centaurs and amazons begins.

Synopsis

Title card - End credits can be found here.

      Open on Ares's temple. There is an elaborate checkerboard set up, with one side carved Horse-heads, and the other side Amazons. Discord picks up one piece in each hand, weighing the pieces. "The Amazons think the centaurs have attacked them. And the centaurs think the Amazons attacked them. Mortals are so clueless," she says, smashing the pieces together. Strife arrives, holding a cup for each of them. They begin to toast to their plan, when Ares arrives, shattering their cups. Ares is upset, demanding an explanation for why Discord is messing with his favorite mortals, the Amazons. Strife and Discord talk him into the idea of letting the war happen, and Ares weighs the idea in his hands. "War, Amazons. Amazons, war. War is good," he decides, and tells them to carry on, but to beware of Hercules. Discord explains that she has a plan.

      Hercules and Lilith are walking through the forest, arguing about the impending war between the Amazons and the centaurs. Lilith stalks off, and when Hercules goes after her to try and find her, he only finds her sword on the ground and hoof-prints in the dirt. There's also a smouldering trace of a fireball in a nearby tree. Back at the Amazon camp, the Amazons are training for war while Hercules explains the situation to Iolaus. Hercules knows that neither Cheiron nor Cyane would lie, and Iolaus points out that they can't be both telling the truth. Hercules points out the scorch-marks on the tree, and that neither centaurs nor Amazons fight with fire, and they both come to the conclusion that it must be a setup.

      Cyane is less than understanding when they explain it to her, unwilling to yield to reason. Simula doesn't help, spurring on their anger, "It has ever been so between the Amazons and us. Their cunning against our strength. Their lies against our truth. They accuse us of the very crimes that they commit." "Where have I heard that before?" Hercules whispers to Iolaus. "There is only one way to deal with centaurs," Simula claims, "War!" The Amazons begin chanting. Cyane is forced to side with her people, saying that they'll attack at dawn.

      That evening, the Amazons are preparing for war, donning armor and bodypaint and practicing with their weapons. Hercules and Iolaus watch, helpless. Hercules sees Simula sneaking into the forest and follows her, suspicious, leaving Iolaus to do what he can to stall the Amazons.

      Hercules follows Simula deep into the forest, and she gets behind him and attacks him. She pulls a tree from the ground and Hercules watches in shock. Fake!Simula reveals herself as Discord, and throws the tree at Hercules, who catches it. Discord shoots lightning at Hercules, who blocks it with the tree, lighting it on fire. Hercules threatens to tell Cyane the truth, but Discord isn't worried, "It'll be a trusted Amazon's word against yours." Hercules attacks her with the tree, demanding to know where the kidnapped centaurs and Amazons are. Finally Discord admits that they're being held in the Cavern of Hephaestus's Torch. Hercules runs off towards the cavern, and Strife arrives to taunt Discord about spilling the beans, but Discord is certain that Hercules won't survive the cavern.

      Hercules arrives in the cavern, passing Hephaestus's Torch - a large metal fist coming out of the floor, holding a red jewel. The missing centaurs and Amazons are there, captive in silver shackles made by Hephaestus, including the real Cavil and Simula. Hercules tries to free Lilith, but the shackles are too strong for him to break. Lilith points him to a key hanging from the opposite wall. Hercules lifts the key off the hook, triggering the alarm system. The red jewel in the metal fist begins powering up, sending out charge after charge of electricity at Hercules. Herc dodges, but the balls of electricity bounce off the shields decorating the walls, flying around the cave like a pinball. After much jumping and dodging, Hercules grabs a shield off the wall and uses it to defend himself against the blasts. Lilith shouts out advice and Hercules changes his tactic, advancing on the fist instead of merely avoiding the blasts. As he gets closer, the fist releases more and more energy blasts, until the fist burns itself out and explodes. Hercules uses the key to release the Amazons and centaurs.

      Back at the Amazon camp, dawn has arrived and Iolaus makes one last desperate plea for Cyane to call off the war, but the situation has escalated out of control. The Amazons and the centaurs each take their sides on the battlefield and begin the attack.

      Hercules and Lilith are headed back to the Amazon camp, and Lilith has warmed up a little to Hercules and is being more friendly - being held captive seemed to open her mind.

      Meanwhile, the Amazons and the centaurs are fighting to the death, including Cheiron and Cyane who threaten each other to back down first. On the outer edge of the battlefield, Strife and Discord watch the fighting with glee. They decide to ensure the destruction of one leader at the hands of the other, and just as Cheiron gains the upper hand, Discord sends out an energy bolt to knock the spear from his hand. Cyane recovers quickly, holding her sword at Cheiron's chest and giving him one last chance to leave. Cheiron refuses to back down, "Kill me and another centaur will take my place." Just as Cyane draws back for the killing blow, Hercules grabs her arm and stops her. "I can prove you've been tricked!" Hercules shouts, holding Cyane captive, "Stop fighting and listen!" The fighting dies down as all eyes turn to Hercules. Discord and Strife share an annoyed glance, shifting back into their guises as Fake!Simula and Fake!Cavil.

      "Don't listen to him!" Discord tries, pretending to be Simula, "We must avenge our dead sisters!" "You mean us?" the real Simula calls out, walking next to the real Cavil. The shock of seeing two sets of Simulas and Cavils is enough to put a full halt to the fighting, as everyone gathers around to try to figure out what's going on. Strife breaks first, changing back to himself, "I think they're on to us." "Well, they are now," Discord replies, annoyed as she switches back to herself. As armed Amazons and centaurs surround them, they vanish back to Ares's temple. Discord and Strife each blame the other for ruining the plan. Ares arrives, pinning them each to the wall with lightning bolts as he demands an explanation.

      Back at the Amazon camp, Amazons and centaurs are sharing food and patching up each other's wounds. Hercules and Cyane are walking hand-in-hand; she again invites him to stay, but he explains that he has to go back to the Academy and she has to lead her people. They just start to kiss when Iolaus bursts in on them, awkwardly telling Herc that Cheiron wants to see him.

      Cheiron thanks Hercules for his help, and Lilith announces that she's coming back to the Academy with them. She thanks Cheiron for his advice, and he reminds her that being different can be a burden or a strength. A few amazons walk by and Iolaus begins to follow them when Herc stops him. "I think I could really fit in here!" Iolaus pleads, but Hercules teases, "I hate to tell you this, Iolaus, but you'd never pass the physical."

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Television Tropes

Quotes

Hercules: Somebody planted those tracks.
Iolaus: What? With their handy-dandy little hoofprint-makers?
Simula: It has ever been so between the Centaurs and us. Their cunning against our strength - their lies against our truth. They accuse us of the very crimes that they commit!
Hercules: Where have I heard that before?

Trivia & References

Aired Out Of Order - Although Discord was seen in the earlier episode 1.07 - Inn Trouble and was seen by Hercules briefly during a drug-induced haze in the Young Hercules (Movie Pilot), this is apparently the first time Hercules meets her.
New Guy - This episode is the first time Discord is introduced to Hercules.
Continuity Warning - Although this is the first episode Hercules "officially" meets Discord, he doesn't seem to realize that he's seen her before - as the Siren in the Young Hercules (Movie Pilot). To be fair, he was drugged at the time and only got a few flickering glances of her, but you'd think that sort of thing would stick with you...

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