Stranger in a Strange World

Stranger in a Strange World

Infobox Television episode
Title= Stranger in a Strange World

Airdate=October 27, 1997
Writer=Paul Robert Coyle
Director=Michael Levine
Guests=Kevin Smith (Ares)
Alexandra Tydings (Aphrodite)
Lucy Lawless (Xena)
Ted Raimi (Joxer)
Renée O'Connor (the executioner)
Prev=Web of Desire
Next=Two Men and a Baby


When Iolaus is kidnapped into an parallel universe, Hercules must save him from the wrath of the Sovereign.

Plot synopsis

Hercules and Iolaus are fighting a group of men so they can rescue a princess. as one man is about to deal a blow to Iolaus, the man drops dead. Elsewhere we see the man's head in a basket after being decapitated. Ares appears, saying that he had great plans for Gravus and the person responsible for his death will pay. Hercules fights Ares in order to save Iolaus. As Ares is about to land a blow to Hercules with his sword, a bolt of lightning strikes the sword and both Ares and Hercules are thrown in opposite directions. As both men lie dazed a vortex opens and a man comes running through. Iolaus catches him but he is able to break free. A group of men on horses come through the portal and capture Iolaus and take him back through the portal as it closes behind them. Ares laughs telling Hercules he found someone to take Iolaus place. Ares, holding the man who came through the portal, turns him around and reveals him to be Iolaus in a jester costume.

Iolaus wakes up in the alternate universe in a cell and demands to see Hercules. The guards tell him that the Sovereign will call him when he is ready to speak to him. In the true dimension Aphrodite appears and tells Ares and Hercules that Zeus is dying. Iolaus manages to escape from his cell, the Sovereign finds him, Iolaus tries to get away from the Sovereign but he tells Iolaus that he is lucky to have him as his best man on his wedding day. Hercules tries explaining what has happened to Jester Iolaus. Jester Iolaus explains that in his dimension Hercules is an evil tyrant. He point to the body of Gravus to make his point, the Sovereign shows Iolaus his new exhibit, Jester Iolaus recognises Gravus as the man whom the Sovereign had just had killed in his dimension, Iolaus recognises one of the men from the exhibit as Gravus, the man who dropped dead in front of him. Hercules concludes that there must be one of everyone in both worlds and that when one dies the other does too.

Iolaus tries to explain to the Sovereign that he switched places with the Iolaus from his world. The Sovereign explains that he is marrying Aphrodite, the Queen of the Gods. Aphrodite tells the Sovereign that Zeus is dying and to call off the wedding. The Sovereign refuses, sending her off to prepare for the wedding. As Iolaus and the Sovereign talk a woman sneaks up on him and the Sovereign grabs her into his lap. The two flirt and it is revealed that the woman is Xena, the Sovereign's mistress. Ares, the God of Love appears to Iolaus and asks for his help in finding where the alternate Xena is hiding the Hind's blood. While Hercules is talking with Jester Iolaus, Aphrodite and Ares appear, telling him that Zeus is still no better. Hercules plans to fight Ares again in the hopes that Zeus will throw another lightning bolt and open the vortex again.

Back in the other dimension the Sovereign prepares to kill the people held captive in his dungeon. Iolaus begs him to spare their lives, he agrees but only if Iolaus can amuse him. Iolaus tries his best but the Sovereign says he failed. He proceeds with the execution and locks Iolaus up. Iolaus joins with the other rebels already held in the cell. An alternate Joxer gives Iolaus a dagger, saying he is the only one the Sovereign trusts enough to be able to get close enough to kill him. Iolaus says he cannot kill a man in cold blood. Jester Iolaus tells Hercules that the Sovereign is killing Zeus and that he must be stopped. Hercules begins smashing up Ares' temple to goad him into a fight. Ares appears and tells Hercules to take it outside. In the other world Iolaus agrees to kill the Sovereign.

As the Sovereign and Aphrodite are being married in the other world, Ares and Hercules fight in order to get Zeus to open the gateway. Iolaus takes the dagger and strikes at the Sovereign who cathes his hand and throws him across the room. Meanwhile Hercules and Ares continue their fight and Zeus sends another lightning bolt and the gateway opens once again. While Iolaus and the Sovereign fight the other rebels manage to escape from their cell and join the fight. Iolaus manages to deduce that the Hind's blood is hidden inside one of Xena's pendants and enlists the help of the alternate Ares and Aphrodite. Xena and Aphrodite begin a food fight with the giant wedding cake and Ares goes around the fight dosing the enemy up on love, while the rebels beat them up.

The Sovereign orders the release of the executioner. The executioner heads straight for Iolaus who, with one punch, knocks him out cold. Iolaus pulls off the hood, revealing that the executioner in that world is Gabrielle of Poteidaia. The portal opens in the alternate world and Iolaus bids farewell to Joxer, Hercules says goodbye to Jester Iolaus, who says he will try to be a hero when he returns to his own world. Iolaus runs through the vortex with the Sovereign in pursuit, as Jester Iolaus and Hercules enter on the other side. The Sovereign catches Iolaus but Hercules appears and punches him. He tells Iolaus to run and the Jester Iolaus flees from the Sovereign back to the other world. As Hercules, Iolaus and Jester Iolaus all return to their correct worlds, the Sovereign is left behind as the vortex closes, sealing him inside.

Cultural references

When Iolaus is imprisoned by the Sovereign he says "I am not a numeral - I am a free man!" This is a reference to a signature line from the television show "The Prisoner", "I am not a number — I am a free man!"

Main cast

*Kevin Sorbo as Hercules
*Michael Hurst as Iolaus

External links

* episode|id=38989|title=Stranger in a Strange World

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