Dual or Dueling Aphrodites (03-04)
Which Aphrodite is Which? (05-06)
The Text in Translation (07-12)
WILL THE REAL APHRODITE PLEASE STAND UP?
Aphrodite is a very different prim and proper goddess in STRANGER IN A STRANGE WORLD, while Ares takes over the duties of the God of Love.
 What you are about to read is an actual translation from the original Greek of a recently discovered ancient scroll. The scroll appears to date from some time during the life of the legendary Xena, the so-called "Warrior Princess". However, this new scroll brings to light an entirely new aspect to our traditional knowledge of the Pantheon of Gods.
 The text clearly describes some legal proceeding, which is presumably conducted by some significant magistrate of the time. The identity of the inquisitor is not made clear, although there are indications that it might well be some significant God. There also appears to be other prominent Gods in attendance.
Dual or Dueling Aphrodites
 Experts have deduced the following details from the original scrolls. Firstly, reference is made to the Greek philosopher Plato and his work Symposium. Plato explains that in fact there exist two distinct and very different Aphrodites. The Aphrodite from the Xena Scrolls and the popular television program, Xena: Warrior Princess, who we shall call "Aphrodite1", is the better known of the two. The other Aphrodite, or "Aphrodite2" apparently has existed all along, but is far less of an attention seeker than the Aphrodite1 with whom we are more familiar.
 Plato postulates that one Aphrodite is named "Aphrodite Urania", or the Heavenly Aphrodite. This is the Goddess of noble love. The other Aphrodite is named "Aphrodite Pandemos". This is the Goddess of a more common, mean form of love. It seems as if both Aphrodites have always known of the existence of the other. Somehow, over the eons of time, their roles and identities have become confused to history.
Which Aphrodite is Which?
Definitely not herself before, Aphrodite has her powers restored in YOU ARE THERE.
 The intent then of this proceeding, which has been painstakingly transcribed from the ancient scrolls, is to determine the following. Since there are certainly two Aphrodites, which one is which? Who is Aphrodite Urania (Heavenly Love), and who is Aphrodite Pandemos (Common Love). They are both claiming to be the former, but only one can be correct.
 Scholars who have studied the material are unwavering in their assessment. As a student of the timeframe involved, sometimes colloquially known as the Xenaverse, I invite you to draw your own conclusions. Here then is the translated text. Certain relevant explanation is supplied in parentheses.
The Text in Translation
 The scene is a large, open-aired courtroom. We see a distinguished looking, elderly white-bearded gentleman sitting upon an impressive elevated marble podium. Before him, to his left and right, there are two white marble altars. At each of these stands a strikingly beautiful woman. On the right, we see Aphrodite1. She is barely wearing revealing pink-colored lingerie. Adorning her feet are fluffy pink slippers. The woman is standing arms akimbo with a devastating smile. To the left, we see her identical twin. Although physically similar, her garments are of a far less provocative nature. A dark, long flowing dress adorns her curvaceous form. Her raven hair is worn high on her head in an intricate woven style. A gilded laurel rests atop. She stands before the magistrate with a reserved and noble dignity. This is Aphrodite2.Judge: Order, order! All be seated please so that we may proceed. Thank you. Now we should all be familiar with the intent of this inquiry. We must determine the true identities of the two Goddesses who stand before me. These Aphrodites, or is that Aphroditi, must provide me with the necessary information so that I may make my decision. We will begin with you, Aphrodite2. Explain to us all the manner of your birth.
Aphrodite2: Thank you, your worship. Indeed, the story of my birth is a strange one, and yet I testify to its absolute veracity. My father, Uranus, had his genitals cut away by the Titan known as Cronus. Then, around these genitals great foam did gather. I was born of this same foam and then carried aloft on a half-shell to the shore.
Aphrodite1: As if! That is like totally grody! Gag me! Girlfriend, if I was born like that, I would like, not be spreading it around!
Judge: Aphrodite1! You are out of order! Speak only when spoken to! Now then, explain to us the nature of your birth.
Aphrodite1: Don't like have a cow there, judge-dude. Okay, you want to know about my like, totally awesome birth, well, I guess there's really not that much to tell. My old man is Zeus, and my old lady is Dione. I'm just your normal everyday, b-tch-n' Goddess-chick!
Judge: Yes, well, neither of these stories clearly identifies either of you. Let us move on then. Aphrodite1, tell us the story of the Apple and the legendary beauty contest.
Aphrodite1: Sure thing Judgie! I first met this Iolaus dude on the beach, and I like gave him this awesome apple that made chicks go like, totally mental for him. Oh yeah, then he was the judge in this beauty pageant, between Athena, Artemis, and duh!, Me!
Judge: And what was the outcome of this contest?
Aphrodite1: It was like totally fixed! I mean, hello? Look at me! As if there's a more super-gorgeous Goddess than me? Not!
Aphrodite2: Your honor. I beg your indulgence. This profane and misguided creature has completely distorted the facts in this event. Please allow me to explain what actually transpired.
Aphrodite1: Who are you calling profane, you stuck-up, boring hag! And what's with the getup? You going to a funeral? Get with the game, sister! And what's this about perspiring? I like never perspire, I glow!
Aphrodite2: How dare you refer to me as a hag! You are an impudent, over-sexed, adolescent nymph! And for your information, I said transpire, not perspire, you dolt!"
Judge: Silence, both of you! Now, Aphrodite2, tell us your version of events as it relates to this enchanted Apple.
Aphrodite2: Of course. The Goddess Discord --
Aphrodite1: Hate her!
Aphrodite2: As I was saying, Discord offered the Apple of Eris as a prize in a great contest of beauty. The judge was Paris. The contestants in his pageant were myself, Hera, and Athena. I was, of course, judged the most beautiful and thus won the prize.
Judge: Hmmmmmm, interesting. I've heard this story, but in a slightly different manner. It is said that you bribed Paris by offering him the incomparably beautiful mortal Helen, thereby initiating the terrible Trojan War.
Aphrodite2: Your honor, these charges are completely without foundation. Quite frankly, I deeply resent your accusations.
Aphrodite1: Ha! More like resemble the accusations! You are so busted, girlfriend! Might as well fess'up!
 At this point, a dark and brooding heavily muscled, black leather clad, God -- likely the legendary Ares -- calls out, "You tell'em Sis!"Aphrodite2: If anyone is busted, I should say it is you, my vulgar, balloon-chested trollop!
Judge" Enough! I will have order in this courtroom! Still, I am puzzled by this conundrum. Let us examine the familial relations, perhaps that will provide us with some insight.
Aphrodite1: I am like totally not into that! I do not have relations with my family. Now her, on the other hand --
Aphrodite2: How dare you! I should reduce your sorry carcass to ash! At least I limit myself to my own species!
Aphrodite1: Bring it on, anytime, anywhere, loser!
 At this point, the proceedings are disrupted by a flurry of energy bolts shooting between the two Goddesses. Much confusion ensues before a booming voice slices through the confusion.Judge: You two will cease this nonsense at once! Now! Aphrodite1, you have explained who your parents were, do you have any brothers, sisters, husbands, or children, who might attest to your true identity?
Aphrodite1: Sure thing! Hmmmm, well let me think. There's my big brother Hercules, and of course Ares. Well, they're actually my half-brothers, I was married to that sweetie Hephaestus, and there's my son Cupid. Oh yeah, I was briefly with that creepy Caligula dude, but I was like, totally wigged out from a spell. So, I guess that doesn't really count.
Judge: I see, and then who is Cupid's father?
Aphrodite1: Uhhhh, you know, I'm not like 100 percent sure. I think it was Hephaestus?
Aphrodite2: Typical blonde. What a harlot, can't even recall the child's father! And to think you should imagine yourself to be the divine and noble Aphrodite Urania. Ha! You could hardly be more common!"
Aphrodite1: Watch it, you pathetic loser! I'm like totally going to fry your bony b-tt!
 At this point, the air is again alive with the crackle of energy bolts. The two Aphrodites fix each other with icy stares of contempt.Judge: I tell you, I have just about had enough of this! I'm beginning to wonder if either of you deserves the title of Aphrodite Urania. Now, Aphrodite2, explain to me your marital history, children, and so forth.
Aphrodite2: Of course, your honor. I was married to Hephaestus, the God of Smiths. I did have an affair on him, with Ares--
Aphrodite1- Yeeeeeewww! Gag me with a spoon! Ares is your half-brother! That is like totally not cool!
 The tall, brooding God, who emerges from the spectators' box, identifies himself as Ares. He addresses the Judge.Ares: Okay, your honor, I admit that I might have had a very brief dalliance with this woman. But hey, chicks dig me, what can I say?
Judge: You are Ares, God of War?
Ares: That's my name, don't wear it out.
Judge: Yes. Perhaps you might have some useful insight into this matter before us. Of the two Goddesses you see before you, from your experience, which one would you describe as common and which one noble?
Ares: Well, that's hard to say. I mean they're both uncommonly beautiful, and noble, who's to say what's noble, I mean really? Aren't we all noble in our own way?
Judge: In other words, you have nothing to offer. Sit down Ares. Please continue, Aphrodite2.
Aphrodite2: Yes, well, as I was saying, I've had my share of…relationships. By Ares, I had three children-- Deimos, Phobus, and Harmonia. Then there was Dionysus. We weren't exactly married, but we had a son-- Priapus. Hermes was another lover of mine, we had a child named Hermaphrodites."
Judge: Was this child male or female?
Aphrodite2: A little of both actually…strange child. Then there was that lovely mortal Anchises. We had two sons, Aeneas and Lyrus. I did have a short affair with Phaethon, and then there was the divine Adonis. Now there was a beautiful man. We had a lovely daughter named Beroe. I am the mother of Anteroes. Let's see, there was Butes and Heracles, both my lovers. I think that's it.
Aphrodite1: Whoa! And I thought I got around! Clearly, you are a serious skank!
Aphrodite2: Oh, shut-up, you bubble-breasted airhead!
Aphrodite1: Hello? You're supposed to the Goddess of Love, not the Whore of Babylon! At least I know how to keep my legs together, some of the time!
Judge: Well now. I'm not sure quite what to say. Aphrodite1, you do not strike me as the most, how shall I put this, the most demure Goddess on this Earth. Yet, you have a certain integrity of spirit that cannot be denied. As for you Aphrodite2, you certainly project the outward appearance of the noble Aphrodite Urania, yet one must seriously question your dignity in regard to your seemingly loose morals. You seem to have indulged in a great number of lovers. Thus, it is the decision of this court that you two will share the title of Aphrodite Urania-Pandemos. You are both common and noble in your own unique ways. I hope that you two can find a way to work together, and be friends. Since you are both Goddesses of Love, this should not be that difficult.
Aphrodite1: Well, I guess I'm willing to give it a shot. What do you think, Sis?
Aphrodite2: Hmmmm. I suppose that we might find some sort of arrangement. Perhaps we might split up Goddess duties between the day and night.
Aphrodite1: You can have the day. I like the nightlife. I'll take the nights! That's when I shine!
 This concludes the translated text. The remainder of the scroll remains undeciphered. It is not known whether this arrangement between the two Goddesses ever worked out. It exists as yet another fascinating mystery concerning the incredible world of Xena, the Warrior Princess.
Bradley Danbrook. "Examination of Xena as Nietzsche's Uberbabe", Whoosh! #68 (May 2002)
Bradley Danbrook. "Xena and the Seven Year Itch", Whoosh! #69 (June 2002)
I am a 37-year-old who has recently relocated to Nova Scotia. The past twelve years were spent at the Toronto Star newspaper. I now work occasionally in television production, and am working on a novel. I am still lamenting the loss of our beloved hero, Xena. I hope to someday meet the genuine Goddess Aphrodite, whomever she may turn out to be.
Favorite episode: WARRIOR…PRIESTESS…TRAMP
Favorite line: Xena: "I like to be creative in a fight. It gets my juices flowing." A DAY IN THE LIFE
First episode seen: REMEMBER NOTHING
Least favorite episode: MARRIED WITH FISHSTICKS