Season one, episode 11
In the Black Wolf, Xena allows herself to be captured and placed in a dungeon in order to an rescue old friend.
A band of freedom fighters, following a secret leader known as the Black Wolf, ambush and kill a group of armed bullies collecting taxes, Xerxes, the cold-blooded ruler of Argos, threatens the villagers with death unless they betray the identity of their rebel leader. In a scene worthy of ‘Spartacus’ a dozen citizens step forward claiming to be the infamous Black Wolf, and Xerxes angrily orders his guards to arrest them all.
Xena arrives at the village in time to see an old friend Hermia, being abused by Xerxes’ guards when she begs to see her imprisoned daughter, Flora.
In order to free Flora from prison Xena pretends to sympathise with Xerxes’ plight and offers to go undercover for a large sum of money. She tells him she will expose the identity of the Black Wolf. Xerxes agrees and the next day, Xena stages an attack on Koulos in the village square, witnessed by a Black Wolf sympathiser. After a battle, Xena is “captured” and taken to the dungeon. Flora refuses to allow Xena to free her unless she frees the other freedom fighters as well.
Whilst Xena is busy with her plan Salmoneus and Gabrielle meet for the firs time. I loved the interaction between Salmoneus and Gabrielle. I wonder which one of them would win in a “talk your way in and out of trouble” competition.
Salmoneus: “Those boots, those legs….”
I felt that the identity of the “Black Wolf” was way too obvious but I enjoyed the episode nonetheless.