The Good Weekend
(The Sydney Morning Herald Magazine)

January 30, 1999

She's a feminist role model, a hit with the kids and a lesbian icon. Most men don't mind her either. A valiant David Leser sets out on a quest to discover the myth and mystique of Lucy Lawless, aka Xena, Warrior Princess.

AI yi yi yi yi!

MY FOUR-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER said, "Don’t go. She’ll kill you." A male friend reminded me that she’d once crushed a Cyclops’s head between her thighs. "But hey," he said cheerfully, "there are worse ways to die." My female friends viewed my assignment with a mirth bordering on derision. Here at last, they seemed to be suggesting, was evidence of my profound weakness for what? The leather-clad, breast-plated dominatrix? No matter. I remained undaunted. I remained wedded to this perilous path. I needed answers. I wanted to meet Xena, Warrior Princess for myself. I knew there were risks attached to the venture and that if I engaged her in a trial of strength, I could lose, and lose badly. But still I pressed on.

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