Having given us Pandora’s Box last week, the series continued in similar vein with The Price of Hope. Yes, Hope as in that which was left in the box after all the bad things came out.
Without pausing to allow Medusa’s fate to sink in, Hercules quickly finds that she is hidden out in a cave and plans to visit. Meanwhile Jason and Pythagoras investigate Pandora’s Box to find out if there might be a way to cure Medusa. When they do set out they have to pass through land controlled by a group of Scythians which means more danger for our heroes!
Hercules gets information from the nefarious Crios (an excellent part for Jason Watkins), while Jason and Pythagoras go off to meet Daedalus (Robert Lindsay). Pythagoras learns that the only cure for Medusa is for Hercules to sacrifice himself and determines never to tell him.
The story needed an action segment, and cue the Scythians. This group of hunters captures the three heroes and then sends them out Hunger Games-style to see who can evade them the longest. There is even an equivalent of Katniss in the form of Atalanta (Nora-Jane Noone) complete with awesome bow skills. During conversation between Pythagoras and Atalanta, Hercules overhears the cure for Medusa and determines to give his own life and is only saved when Jason knocks him out of the way. We discover (although it's not explained how) that Jason can look at Medusa and not be turned to stone.
Once again, the supporting cast impresses. Robert Lindsay is perfect as the inventor Daedalus, and Noone's Atalanta is a character who leaps from the screen fully-formed, with her own destiny and promise of another romantic thread for Jason.
On paper there is a lot to like, but in sticking to its formula the adventure failed to achieve everything it might have. Rushing forward with the Medusa arc did introduce some intriguing new strands to the story but overall this episode felt like a mismatch of elements padding out some intriguing ideas.