Whoosh! Issue 59 - August 2001
Letters to the Editor

Page Five

Cut That Cord...NOW! #051-085


I am p*ss*d. Totally, completely p*ss*d. These shows were both lousy, ill thought out, and an insult to my intelligence. I won't bother with all the bloopers, but hear this: I'll never watch either again. Nor will I budge from my conviction that for once Gabrielle ignored Xena's request ( for a million valid reasons) and DID place the ashes into the spring. Having had enough of "chasing trouble", they serenely walked off into the sunset, side by side as always, and this is the scene that will remain in my memory.

A former hard core nutball,


Sooo upset and disgusted with the way the series ended, I feel betrayed and hurt by producers actors and writers together.

Oakland, CA


I'm not sure what this means, but "disappointed" is way too mild, so I guess this must be the right choice. I haven't felt this betrayed since the 3rd season of _Beauty & the Beast_. No wonder people write fanfic...



Rob Tapert proudly predicted that Xena would be a classic and live on for years to come. I think that was true - true that is until the final two episodes of the show. The producers had a wonderful opportunity to end the show in a way that would have brought so much pleasure to so many fans. In Xena they created something special that fans found entertaining and absorbing. How much fun it would have been to bring back many of the characters from past episodes and wrap up their stories bringing closure to the relationships that so many fans have grown to love. The makers of this show created something that people loved to be involved in. With any kind of love comes responsibility. They totally betrayed their responsibility to the fans they themselves created. The sad part is I don't think they care. Lucy Lawless indicated as much herself in interviews. The ending of Xena was made to satisfy themselves alone. It is true. It was their creation to do with as they wished, but they will never have the respect of much of their audience again. They wanted to bring to an end a show that would live in memories for years to come, they succeeded in making a show that many fans can't wait to forget. Six years of waiting impatiently for the next episode - hollow satisfaction indeed.



this ep. had so many plot holes you could fly the spaceship andromeda thru it!! where has that lying,backstabbing r.t. BEEN!! IT MADE ME SICK AFTER ALL WE DID FOR THEM BOTH(RT&LL) WE ALL DESERVED BETTER!THERE WOULDNT HAVE EVEN BEEN A SEASON 5 OR 6 WITHOUT US!! LUCY&RT SCREWED ALL OF US WITHOUT EVEN AN AFTERTHOUGHT after all they already had the money in their pockets right!!I WILL NEVER HAVE ANYTHING TO DO WITH ANYTHING EITHER ONE OF THEM DO AGAIN AFTERALL ONCE BURNED TWICE SHY UNLESS YOUR AN IDIOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Six words to say about the finale: It Sucked! It Sucked! It Sucked! The old showbiz adage: "Leave 'em wanting more." does not apply in this case. I couldn't bare to watch any more of the reruns. From Bitter Suite: "My heart is hurting beyond words...



I wanted to wait a week to see how I really felt after processing it. But boy, with each Lawless and Tapert quote I read, I have no problem moving from disappointed but entertained to CUT THE CORD.



I'm a normally sane and intelligent and educated and reasonably successful middle-aged woman. I've watched TV since I was little...it has always been part of my life experience and has provided me with all kinds of wonderful entertainment. I've had favorite shows over the years...shows that I would adjust my life schedule to accommodate viewing. There weren't very many that were special enough to warrant this life "adjustment", but admittedly there were a few over the years. But I have no real history of being obsessed with a TV show...until XWP.

I found XWP 40 years into my life -- and at the lowest point of my life. At a point of abject despair...at a point months into a critical depression...I discovered a TV show that helped. I discovered XWP. I discovered two strong and independent female characters who traveled the world together -- who made me laugh and made me cry. Two strong and independent female characters who made a difference. Two strong and independent female characters who clearly loved each other above all else. And I was hooked into a TV show in a way that no TV show has ever hooked me. I became obsessive about viewing (and taping) in a way that has never been part of my TV experience. I became involved with these two fictional characters in a way that seems utterly and completely impossible for someone who has otherwise been a perfectly reasonable and sane adult human being. I became an obsessive Xenite. And for whatever was happening in my life over the next couple of years, the Xena hour of the week became sacred. The Xena videotaping became one hour of the week that was a "must" for me.

Admittedly, I came onto the scene late. It was mid Season 4 before I found them -- Xena and Gabrielle. But they drew me to them like a moth to a flame. The Thanksgiving Battle-On-A-Thon. I was cooking a turkey dinner for my friends. USA was running Xena mostly all day. I had it on. I kept it on. I was intrigued. And found myself sitting there with my mouth hanging open. And found myself laughing hysterically. And found my heartstrings pulled and aching. And wondered what the heck was this magic all about?

USA was re-running the old episodes daily, so I was able to catch up pretty quickly. What a rush it was to have a fresh Xena episode to watch every single weekday!! And then to have an extra bonus brand-spanking new episode on the weekend!! From the Battle-On-A-Thon forward, I was sooo very hooked! XWP was like nothing I had ever seen. And became the first TV show I *ever* cared enough about to tape...and to know the episode names...and to re-watch. To my surprise, I found that I actually wanted to re-view these episodes. I found that some episodes were so chock full of things that they required multiple viewings just for me to get a handle on them all. And God how I loved to see Xena and Gabrielle together -- what amazing chemistry between them...what an incredibly intangible connection between them. The two of them together literally took my breath away more times than I could possibly relate. I became addicted to the slow-motion feature of my VCR -- a feature which I had previously not even known to exist.

The defining moment of obsession for me...when Xena kissed and hugged Gabrielle after her wedding ceremony to Perdicus in Return of Callisto. The look on Xena's face spoke such incredible volumes about what she was feeling but not saying to Gabrielle. At that moment, it was perfectly clear to me that Xena was wholeheartedly in love with Gabrielle. And Gabrielle's wedding night scene with Perdicus...and all the talk of Xena...it was ambiguously clear at least that Gabrielle even still had very strong feelings toward Xena.

And so I was hooked. And I cheered for them. And I ached for them. And I laughed with them...sometimes hysterically. And I stuck with them through episodes (and seasons *cough - Season 5*) where I had to wonder who the hell was pulling their strings that way and why... But I always loved them. And I basically ignored the inconsistencies that showed up along the way. When all was said and done, they were still together and no-one *really* came between them...or at least not for long.

I have never been obsessive about a TV show. But here I sit with 4 seasons worth of bought episode tapes and with way too many 8x10s and with Xena Fan Club silliness and calendars to beat the band. I've never done this before for a TV show. I suppose at this point I ought to be pleading temporary insanity.

For as much as I have never loved a TV show like I have loved XWP...for as much money as I've spent on it that I certainly have never spent on TV...for as much love and devotion and obsession as I have devoted to XWP...this is the degree of despair that I feel now after the series' finale. I am utterly in despair. I have been on the verge of tears constantly since viewing the finale and feel so incredibly betrayed and mournful that I can't seem to get myself past it. XWP gave hope to me back in a time when I had absolutely no hope. XWP helped me to find the strength to carry on in my life when I felt helpless and hopeless to the point of no return. XWP helped me find the strength to get my life back on track. XWP had six years invested in building a relationship between two women that seemed to be of epic proportions. And, importantly for me, the storyline allowed for (and often outright encouraged) the interpretation that the tale of Xena and Gabrielle was actually a romance of epic proportions. What an incredible possibility for lesbian viewers! Two women portrayed as soulmates for all eternity. Fantastic!

But they could never actually be shown to be lovers. Heaven forbid. That would be too much for viewers to accept. Implied doggy-style hetero sex was fine...impaling was fine...hetero tonsil-hockey as part of a "plan" was fine...Gab-dragging was fine...torture and crucifixion were both fine...beheading was fine. No. Actually it's not. None of it is fine with me. To have the series end with Xena being decapitated and strung up naked -- do they strip male warriors before they string them up? To have the series end with Gabrielle retching at the sight of Xena's mutilated body? To have the series end with Xena paying some stupid debt for 40,000 moronic souls who couldn't manage to run away from a fire that a drunken and bereaved Evil Xena accidentally started in self-defense because she was trying to honor the memory of someone she loved who had actually manipulated her rather cruelly? To have the series end with Gabrielle doing everything humanly possible to bring Xena back to her -- to watch Gabrielle do everything right and to succeed in every way -- only to have it not actually matter? To have the series end with Gabrielle living out the rest of her life without Xena at her side? No. This is wrong. It's so very very wrong.

I look at my Xena tapes now and my Xena fandom memorabilia and I feel sick. I feel sad. I cry. I can't imagine watching that finale again. Yet I can't remove it from my mind. It taints the whole series for me and makes it so that I can't imagine ever watching the old tapes again. I was planning to buy Season 6 -- I actually liked a lot of Season 6. A lot of Season 6 confirmed the love story for me. But now...I can't imagine buying it. It would feel too masochistic at this point. I'm not a masochist...at least I've never thought of myself as a masochist. But with the "crowning jewel" now firmly in place on the XWP series...I'm actually afraid to go back and look at the old tapes in light of the darkness that has come through with this ending. I'm afraid to go back and look at the darkness that I might have missed the first N times through. Actually...I loved this series more than people ought to love TV. It's perfectly ridiculous how much I loved it. I know this. But would it really have been so hard to end it with the two of them together? Dead or alive...and even if the romance were left ambiguous...it still would have worked for me. But now. No. It hurts too much to think about anything XWP. I loved it more than any TV show ever. And now I feel so much like ladyjanegray said on atx-s -- I want that pill that will make me forget that I ever saw the show. Ever.

I can be amazed and impressed and in awe that Tapert et al hooked me so completely and thoroughly over the course of the series. But at this point, I wholly defend my right to be hurt and angry that he/they would violate Xena/Gabrielle and manipulate me/us the way that he/they did in the end. Never again for me.

Battle Off.



Hi Kym,

Reading a book is like watching a movie. You want to get done reading/watching it to see the ending. What is it with the "ending?" Does it bring closure, satisfaction or confusion?

As for our beloved TV show, Xena: Warrior Princess, the ending for us came as a shock. We just could not believe it ended the way it did. When the talks about the ending of Xena after six seasons began, we prepared and psyched ourselves that "all good things must come to an end," and we must learn to accept and deal with it. We had mixed emotions. We wanted to see the ending, but at the same time did not want the show to end.

We anticipated for the final two episodes and tried hard to be spoiler/rumors free. However, rumors of the death of Xena, of the death of Gabrielle, and even the deaths of both Xena AND Gabrielle circulated the Xenaverse, but we never believed them. We remained spoiler-free to the end. As hard as we tried, someone spoilt it for us. Someone emailed us and asked us how we felt about the ending without asking if we have seen the episodes or not and not even putting up some spoiler space. Anyway, we just anticipated "how" Xena died.

At the recent Xena convention in Pasadena, Renee O'Connor gave the ending away when she commented that "Xena comes full circle. She lived by the sword and died by the sword." At that moment, those words did not sink in our minds. What's another death in the Xenaverse? They always come back, right? WRONG. Not this time.

Nothing quite prepared us for the showing of the much awaited, "Xena: Warrior Princess Series Finale" and nothing ever will. It aired as a two-hour show much like a feature movie. June 23, 2001 would be a day to remember for it would bring the demise of our beloved show, Xena: Warrior Princess.

June 23, 2001 at 8:00pm-10:00pm were the saddest two hours of our lives. We could not believe that "The Powers That Be" who brought so much joy and happiness to countless fans would also cause so much pain and sorrow to the devoted and loyal fans of the show. We, among others, were deeply saddened by the way the series ended specifically the death of XENA. We do believe that the way she died was the way of the warrior for that was the path she was on and thus the name, "Warrior Princess." However, her headless body riddled with arrows was too disturbing and heartwrenching to see and we thought her arms being chopped off in "The Way" episode was brutal enough. Xena was a hero and died a hero, sacrificing her own life and happiness for the greater good. In the end, we were left with an overwhelming sense of loss, of tragedy and of disbelief. Xena broke our hearts.

We were so disappointed at how TPTB wrote this whole episode. Avenging those 40,000 souls was so dense. It was not Xena's fault they were enslaved. It was an accident. How could Gabrielle, the ghost killer and the monks see and interact with Xena, Akemi and the two kabuki women when they were supposed to be in the spirit world?

Death in the Xenaverse as we, devoted fans, know is only temporary. We guess since this was the ending, death was made permanent. It did not have to be. Why kill XENA, the lead character of the show?!? Okay, so TPTB killed her, but there was a way to bring her back!!! Gabrielle tried to bring her back, but Xena herself did not want to come back. It was as if Xena wanted to remain dead because that was the way to avenge those souls and Akemi wanted Xena to restore her honor. In other words, Xena chose Akemi over Gabrielle. "Friend in need" and it turned out to be Akemi. Poor Gabrielle. It also seemed that we saw more of Akemi than of Gabrielle. Then Xena finally admitted that Gabrielle was her soulmate and yet she did not tell Gabrielle her whole "plan" of defeating Yodoshi. Up until the end, Gabrielle seemed to be just Xena's ever-faithful sidekick.

In the Xenaverse, TPTB is known to alter life's history, so why stick to the idea of the only way for those souls to be redeemed was for the redeemer to die as well? Maybe this was a Japanese belief, but TPTB did not have to stick to it and write it in. They could have altered the events just like how they did on past episodes. Xena undoubtedly redeemed those souls so what was the point of her remaining dead? NOTHING.

As we all know, Xena, to begin with, was on her path to redemption which was the theme of the show as a whole. We do believe that Xena had already redeemed herself many times over when she died and brought back to life several times in the past. TPTB should have taken into account the emotional impact this ending would have on us, the fans. We strongly feel that we, the fans, have been taken for granted, for without us, XENA will never be the highest syndicated show ever.

For non-Xena viewers, Xena: Warrior Princess is just a TV show, but like no other. XWP has a heart and soul and will be a part of us forever. It moved us. It made us laugh. It made us cry. It made us think and wonder. It made us react. We could never have the same passion for another TV show. Xena was SIMPLY THE BEST!!! We will keep it alive in our minds and hearts forever.

We would have loved the ending to be Xena and Gabrielle sailing TOGETHER off into the sunset in search of new adventures.



Well, not completely. I'm sitting here at 6 a.m. and trying to do some research for the commentary I hope to finish this weekend on the ending of the show. I am so angry I could spit. In fact, I have spit. And cursed. And cried. That miserable b*st*rd Tapert. Oh well. Hey it's only a TV show. That is what everyone at work has said to me repeatedly this week. Wish me luck! And consider this a vote to send Tapert, Lucy, Renee and the whole g*dd*mn Ren Pic crew over the edge in that goddamn boat of theirs.



It just hurts too d*mn much!



What a dreadful way to end the show - straight out of a 50's lesbian pulp novel...



Serves the selfish bastard right!



I will never have anything to do with anything that is remotely related to Robert Tapert or Lucy Lawless. It's been over a week since I saw FIN and I am still disgusted and even more with RT and LL for their insensitive remarks about the fans. I hate to write this but they truly are selfish, ungrateful people besides not being too bright. I have no doubt they knew the pain that episode would cause to the fans. Unfortunately their agenda was more important than people's feelings. Their irresponsible behavior and insensitive comments are the worst I have ever seen from anyone in the entertainment industry. I wish I had never watched that show .



Do I want to cut the cord with XWP or Robert Tapert? No, I don't want to but that's exactly what's happening to me. The thing is that I haven't seen the finale yet (and I'll never do it) but already I'm not able to watch the old episodes anymore. I do understand that the show belongs to Mr. Tapert and he can do what he wants with it, but he should understand that without the fans he wouldn't be where he is today. So in my opinion he should have at least shot the other finale where Gabrielle dies with Xena, and put in a DVD Special Edition where people could choose their finale. Well I had already made my plans to buy every single DVD of the show but now I surely am not going to spend more money for Tapert. I guess I should thank him after all, huh!



The big snip! I'm moving on, without any interest in what Tapert wants to do in the future.



This last season was kinda what? I missed Callisto I missed real drama. I even missed Joxer. Witchblade is helping me through XENA withdrawal. And did they have to Cut off her head? Reading to much Lewis Carroll lately?



though not a devoted Xena fan I enjoyed watch the show whenever the chance came up. Just so happened that it did for the finale. Was very disappointed in it. The warrior princess deserved better then going out like that



Somehow I cut the cord without much effort on my part. Before FIN I was the consummate Xenite. Had someone said to me,"You are off to a deserted island,and you can take with you either the greatest book you have ever read,or a video tape of 'Married with Fishsticks' (UGH)".I would have actually given that choice some thought. If that same person had said,"You are off to a deserted island,and you can take with you the greatest book you've ever read,or a video tape of 'One Against an Army',I may have chosen the latter. I loved this show.

When I read the first spoilers of FIN2 on the netforum Sun. June 17,I was rather distraught. The death of Xena was so gory and needlessly gruesome. Immediately I turned off the computer,and left it off for three days. I didn't know what people were saying about FIN.I wanted to process my feelings about FIN on my own. In those three days I went through a lot of emotions,the same emotions so many people are dealing with,post FIN. I'm not sure that I'm glad that I left the internet world,because when I came back to the Xenaverse I realized that I was now seeing this show with my head instead of my heart. That's a radical change for me.

At one time I thought at the end of XWP that I would watch all the eps again. If I limited myself to one episode a day,it would take almost six months to get though the series. I was looking forward to that. Now it just doesn't matter.

Why?Maybe because this show was a part of me,it was a part of many of us. This wasn't a two hour movie,or a book that takes a week to read.(Believe me I have read books that I loved so much that I grieved when I got to the last page)XWP was shown over a span of six years. In six years you can get a master's degree,in six years you can see a baby grow into a first grader,In six years you can go from journeyman to craftsman in some trades. Six years is a long time to care about a couple of characters in a TV show. As LL said about Renee,they were together longer than most marriages last. The fans were with them longer than most marriages last too. It was a love affair. And,damn,it ended badly.

When a love affair ends badly people are angry,especially if they had nothing to do with the breakup. LL is married to the genius who said something about wanting to "suprise and entertain" the audience with FIN."It's like not letting kids open their presents before Christmas"(aside - one wonders what he gives as Christmas presents given his allusion to FIN).LL is taking the heat too ,because she could have,just once,considered the other half of this love affair - the fans. Instead she was out promoting FIN,which she probably had to do by contract,and making one unfortunate remark after another. The nightmare continued for the fans.

The sad thing is not that the reprobates no longer care for this show. The sad thing is that people like me,who loved this show as much as anybody could,don't care about it anymore. When you know the intended ending,it's hard to go back and watch the old episodes with the same joy. Or any joy. It just isn't the same.

It's all so odd. While I am grateful for the time I did love XWP,and grateful to the cast and crew of what was a wonderful show,I don't care if I ever see it again. Thanks Rob,you helped me cut the cord without really trying. May FIN bring you and LL lots of accolades,and may it help you to become the writer and director that you seem to want to be,given FIN. Somebody should get some good out of this. For me,and many others,the love affair is over.



I was shocked at the total disregard TPTB had for the pain they caused by Xena's death. Pain for the loss of our hero and pain for the loss of her soulmate for Gabrielle. I am at the point where I may need to erase all traces of XWP from my home just to get over the sorrow I feel.



i was sad and disappointed at the ending, but am furious with the comments from tapert&stewart that xena was like a war criminal. i would never had committed time & energy to watch a TV show dedicated to a war criminal. this isn't the first time it's been mentioned - steven sears made comments about this to a fan who was writing a convention review that the writers thought this way. this was reported well over a year ago & that poster was royally flamed for it. turns out it wasn't so far fetched afterall.






it was not right to kill xena



Kill me now. I don't care if I can't come back in a subsequent episode. What a terrible way to end a great series.



enough is enough already. geez. i don't know what to say now. even thought i cried like a big baby when i saw that episode, i live in reality land where i know this is a story, and there are too many real problems plaguing our sisters out there to be wasting tears on this ending. i see RT's vision... it was a full circle for the story.



The ending "sucked".......pardon my french, so to speak. Nothing like being emotionally jerked off. My gut tells me that this was a publicity stunt dreamed up by Tapert, who obviously has no sense of gratitude for the thousands of loyal Xena fans who've stuck with this show over the years, through thick and thin. He knew this would hurt but he did it anyway. I personally will never support another series or other entertainment effort produced by Mr. Tapert, and am saddened by the turn of events. On the bright side, we still have excellent fan fiction writers who have managed to consistently surpass any effort the show has ever been able to put forth. Thank God for these excellent, talented writers.



Both Xena and Gabrielle have literally gone to heaven and hell to be with one another and to bring one another back from the dead, to then send them off to Japan where Xena gets killed! OH PLEASE! When's the movie, so Xena can resurrect again!



Sorry, but the series went SO far downhill after the third season that I just couldn't keep watching it any more. The final straw was a pregnant Xena, and then mother Xena. It just didn't work. So I just continue to think of the first three seasons as all there ever was!

I watched the finale for old times' sake, and wasn't even affected. It was such a stupid premise for Xena--- I mean, come ON, the Warrior Princess! - to die that way, and for that reason. It didn't work, and I just couldn't even make myself care.

The finale was in no way worthy of the original Xena. But then again, neither have the last three seasons been!



The final episode was a big disappointment to me and my 13 year old daughter. We have watched the show from the beginning. The only option for the end was for Xena and Gabrielle to be together. This could have been accomplished with various plots such as: they both die and are together in eternity; the 40,000 souls remain redeemed and Xena is not held accountable for their capture and is allowed to live again. She and Gabrielle return to Xena's grandparents home to live out there lives in peace; Xena is brought back into a guy's body, marries Gabrielle, and lives a happy life; Xena returns in her body and they have the Amazon's perform a unity ceremony where they pledge to be together for life. I am not a writer and neither is my 13 year old, but even we have thought of some other options that are greatly preferred to the tragic and unsatisfying finale.



This means I'm extremely disappointed!!!!!



I think it would be great that we still have more episodes in the future with xena. They shouldn't canceled it right now.



I think Xena is one of the coolest and most entertaining shows ever. The relationship between Xena And Gabrielle is a very interesting one to say the least. Before Xena all the action shows had big tough and totally buff guys saving the the poor defenseless females from monsters and such. It always kind of bugged me how the women could never defend themselves. But when Xena came along all that changed for the better. The way they ended the show was horrible. It definitely should not of ended the way it did. To be honest I only last fifteen minutes and that was enough to have bawling my eyes out. I read about the rest of the episode later and wasn`t very happy about how Xena died. They should redo the ending pure and simple. Let Xena and Gabrielle be together darn it!!!!!



I am somewhere between "disappointed" and "cut the cord...now!" A bittersweet ending to 6 wonderful years. Well, 5 if you don't include Season 5.



Episode 134 never happened, not for me and not for X & G.



Yes. Xena's producers made WP's destiny equal to every "dangerous" lesbian character in fiction. The reasons given by RT and LL for Xena's death are ridiculous. Xena had acquired redemption through her good actions much time ago. I am disappointed and disgusted at this political backlash.


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