Eight-part adaptation of Homer's classic tale. Paris flees the city and returns to his shepherd roots, leaving Helen alone and without an ally in Troy.
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This programme contains some strong language, some violent scenes,
and some scenes which some viewers may find upsetting
-Get to Troy.
I can't unsee it, madam.
I know how much I'm asking of you.
Since I was forced
to give up something precious at your demand, I want her.
You fight alone now.
They're proposing a duel.
It's a trick.
For Troy to live, you have to die.
You asked to see me.
I asked for news.
The men we sent out didn't find him.
How many did you send?
It's not easy, as you know, to get men out of the city.
And even harder to get them back in.
Is that all he's worth?
It's not about worth, it's about risk...
There will be Greek soldiers combing the hills, desperate for his head.
He'll die at their hands.
I'm afraid that might well be his fate.
Send them back out. Now.
That is not a decision I or you can make.
All Trojan lives are of value, not just Alexander's.
And there are voices suggesting
he should not return to the city at all.
What do you mean by that?
You heard the priest.
In the trees on the right!
Priam. He's coming now.
You need to talk to him.
Tell her to her face what you did.
I already know.
I want you to hear it from them.
What is this? Get her out of here.
Don't move, Cassandra.
Will you speak or shall I?
And say what?
You sent your newborn son to his death.
You told your other children that wolves stole him,
forced your wife to play along.
Luckily, the man you employed for the task disobeyed your command.
That is the only reason Alexander's still alive.
Because a simple shepherd had a heart you never did.
I did what I thought was best for the city.
I don't have to apologise to you or anyone for that.
What about her?
She had a vision that Alexander would burn the city to the ground.
Black blood would flow in the streets.
You told her she was mad.
You locked her up.
You told me that my sister was disturbed,
that I couldn't see her, that she needed constant care,
and she shouldn't be allowed out to play like other children.
She was seven years old.
I don't want to be in here.
Stay where you are, Cassandra.
When Alexander came back, you lied again.
-To save his life!
-You lied and you lied,
and now you hide away in your room like a child.
-To save his life!
-What kind of a coward are you?
Please let me go.
Let her go, Hector.
Your father didn't force me.
What we did we did together.
Are you saying you gave away your son voluntarily?
You lied to your children!
You lied too.
You met Litos in Cilicia.
He warned you to stop Alexander from returning.
Yes, I did meet Litos.
And perhaps I should have obeyed him.
I had the chance and I failed.
I'm telling Pandarus to call off the search for Alexander.
What? But the Greeks will find him...
-You know what they'll do to him...
-The gods have been clear.
He cannot be in Troy.
He's your blood!
The risk is too great.
I'm taking over the running of the city now.
I think it's for the best, don't you?
What about Helen?
What do you mean?
Well, Alexander's gone. What reason do we have to keep her?
You mean give her back?
The Greeks have butchered your father.
You want to reward that with a trophy?
I just want my child to grow up in a city not at risk of extinction.
When Greek blood decorates our walls, we'll decide on Helen's fate.
And in the meantime, what do we do with her?
-They won't hand her over.
-But the boy's gone.
Why keep her now?
Afraid we'll humiliate them financially and politically.
I won that duel! The terms were specific.
Immediate surrender and the return of my wife!
Trickery got you the advantage, Menelaus.
I'm not sure you can claim the moral high ground.
It was your idea to use the priest.
To weaken the prince's resolve.
But you missed your chance...
I didn't miss my chance.
You didn't kill him.
You say that again.
-You didn't kill him.
Put your swords away.
They have reneged on the conditions of the duel.
Lost all rights to her, and his life.
And I want that coward found.
I have men roaming the hills.
Then double the numbers.
I want him brought here for my brother's satisfaction.
And for my own.
May I eat with you?
Get her food.
What's happened to our rooms? Where are Paris' things?
Alexander isn't coming back.
What about the search parties?
We've called them off.
I'm afraid it's too dangerous.
What authority do you have to make that decision?
I'm running things now.
Alexander...he knows the hills well.
He will reach safety...
How can you possibly know that?
If Paris is gone...
..there's no reason for me to be here,
You should return me to Menelaus.
We've no intention of returning you.
When the war is won we'll give you and Alexander a life together.
But not here.
If he's still alive.
In the meantime, we think it's best
if you stay out of the public gaze for a while.
Until we know better the feelings of the city.
Helen, people are nervous.
They blame the outsider for their own sins.
We don't want to put you in any danger.
How kind of you to think of me.
We've arranged for you to go to the widows' quarters for a while.
They will feed you, look after you...
The widows' quarters?
It's somewhere safe and quiet...
My husband isn't dead.
I'm in a bad mood.
I'm going to slit that Trojan from arse to mouth when I find him.
May I come in?
I wanted to tell you.
You see, I lived with all of this for so long.
But I just became accustomed to it.
And for that I shall never forgive myself.
Do you understand?
I don't expect anything from you.
I just want you to have your life back...
I can't be here. I'm sorry.
Find him, and bring him back here! Move out!
Why do we do all the dirty work? Hm?
Meanwhile, Achilles sits in his tent sulking, refusing to fight.
He's too busy scaling his lover boy to scale the city...
Tell him what you heard.
Achilles and the Myrmidons are refusing to fight.
That's 500 of their best men.
-Why would he refuse?
-They didn't say.
It explains why they proposed the duel.
They're worried that without Achilles,
they don't have the power to beat us.
Then we have to move quickly before he changes his mind.
enlist more of the city.
All men over 14 and under 40.
14 is young.
Well, let's hope we don't have to use them.
-You're from Cilicia?
What were you doing out there?
I was looking for my sister.
She was taken by Achilles.
I wanted to know if she's still alive...
And is she?
-I want to sign up.
Hesion, son of Philemon.
Meet at the training ground.
I want to fight too.
How old are you?
But keep practising.
Anyone else in the house?
Just a trader from Thrace,
but we haven't seen him for weeks.
This is where he lives, my lord.
When did you last see him?
Must be weeks ago.
It's not like him.
Harmon's no deserter.
Put your feelers out.
Anything strange that happens in the palace,
anything out of the ordinary,
I want to know.
This came for you, madam.
A man at the back gate.
Said he's a friend.
Are you ready, madam?
Now you get your wish.
Believe it or not, I'm actually doing this to protect you.
Why do you hate me, Andromache?
I tried to help you.
With some success, I think.
Some quack potion you brought with you from Sparta
to keep your skin soft? This baby is mine.
I thank the gods for its omens.
I did force you.
To give Alexander up.
You didn't force me.
You persuaded me.
To sacrifice one life for all lives.
And now we have to face what we did.
I keep... I keep thinking about him.
Out there, all alone,
hunted like an animal.
You know, when he came back...
..I honestly thought the gods had forgiven us.
I thought it was a chance to start anew.
What do the gods want from us, Hecuba?
HE GRUNTS LOUDLY
It's just me.
I'm sorry I scared you.
Does your family know you're here?
Married a girl from the island, lucky boy.
I found out the truth.
Did you go against the king's orders...
..and save my life?
I couldn't do it. I brought you back here.
Thought I'd raise you as one of my own.
Why didn't you tell me?
I did what I thought was right.
Did I do wrong?
I lost a duel.
I fled the field of battle.
I've brought shame on the whole city.
I don't know where to go.
Seven, eight, nine!
You, you! Centre!
One, two, three, four!
Hey. How are you?
Where did you go?
The recruiters want you for battle.
Oh, you know me.
I'm no fighter.
It's good to see you.
Please, sit. Have some food.
What are you looking at?
Never seen goat's blood before?
Hey. What about this place, huh?
Some Minoans used to live here.
It's not bad, is it?
Please, sit. You're making me nervous.
You look hungry. I'll get you something.
Beans all right?
Would you like to try?
I don't know how to do it.
I'll teach you. I'm Adrasteia.
Is everyone here a widow?
Not everyone, but most of us.
Did yours die in battle?
Don't feel bad.
He was a brutal bastard. I thought about doing it myself.
You're missing him?
Well, we're here for you.
Whatever you need.
What's she doing here?
We're helping her return to normal life.
Hesion's going to fight.
What if he dies?
How do you know?
My third eye. Listen,
it's getting late. You should go.
you probably shouldn't come back here.
Well, I should be fighting for the city that's taken me in.
If soldiers find me here...
Are you scared?
Does that mean you're a coward?
Yes, I suppose it does.
your brother's worth ten of me.
So go back to him
and your grandmother and don't tell anyone you saw me. All right?
OK, go on.
You took a gift to Queen Helen?
Who gave it to you?
He didn't give a name, sir.
I didn't see his face.
Smaller than you.
What was the gift?
It was wrapped in a cloth, sir.
Who are you?
I'm a friend.
I don't need a friend.
You needed someone to clear up after you.
That servant was about to betray you.
What did you do to him?
I fulfilled Achilles' command.
I have been charged with your care while you remain in the city.
What do you want from me? Money?
Merely to protect you.
For your return.
I'll never return.
Everything I have done, I have done for my love.
And now you are alone.
Your lover has gone.
You have secrets that need protection.
I never asked for your help and I never will.
Go back to your Greeks and tell them I don't want to see them
or you again.
Your beauty is different close up.
Lord Pandarus is making enquiries into your servant's disappearance.
Tastier than anything in Troy.
What happened to that woman you stole?
Don't you love her?
More than ever.
But I lost.
So they have to give Helen back to Menelaus.
It's the code of war.
They probably already have.
What if I'd never left here?
But you did.
Paris, I'm an old man.
I can't protect you.
The boy has suffered enough.
Priam should have killed the baby himself.
Then none of this need have happened.
You set the whole thing up.
The competition, Helen,
all just to satisfy the omens.
I gave the boy a chance to seize his own destiny,
and he took it.
Forgive him, for me.
Thing is -
forgiveness isn't our way, is it?
I won't let you take him.
Be at the ready.
We'll be back.
Yes, my lord.
What the hell are they doing?
Finally agreeing to abide by the conditions of the duel?
We know you lack Achilles and the Myrmidons.
I don't know where you get your information.
Then why haven't you attacked us?
We broke the code of war not giving Helen back.
There must be a reason.
The answer to that question...
..is that I whipped your brother...
..and I'll do the same to you.
Tell Agamemnon you have until morning to leave our soil.
Then we'll send 100 horses into your camp and murder
each and every one of you.
We outnumber you two to one and we're in no mood for mercy.
I will talk to my king.
By sunrise, you need to be gone.
If she says anything at all,
come straight to me.
What will you do to him?
Leave that to me.
Don't hurt him.
Just get him out of the city.
I will need to get to his private rooms.
I can't let you in the palace.
That would be treason.
Lord Pandarus is a determined man.
He will find out the truth...
..unless you open that door.
Go back out on to the plain.
If the Greeks make any move, let me know.
You think they'll leave?
If they stay, they don't stand a chance, cousin.
We'll ride them into the sea.
I needed to tell you Hector's demands.
In front of a slave girl?
You want to leave?
Go on, then! Leave!
You leave my brother and I to fight them alone.
Walk out now.
You're a free man. Go on.
No-one is recommending leaving.
No, that's right, because no-one is leaving!
Not without her!
I thought you might come.
When does this stop? When we're all dead?
When the king feels in his soul the wrong he's done me
and gives me back my girl.
That probably won't happen tonight.
They have twice the numbers.
They have dozens of horses.
You could have Trojan riders in your tent within hours.
Well, we'll be sure to welcome them.
See, I'm not like you, Odysseus.
You like to win regardless of the cause.
If I feel the cause is wrong, I can't move.
My sword won't rise in my hand.
Stop this. We don't have time.
There's always time for thinking, Nestor.
We need your men, even if you won't fight!
Give me a reason and I'll fight.
One that isn't rape or pillage.
You show me a higher calling that demands my power.
Give me cause and I'll give you war.
So, in the absence of glory,
you'll have to rely on your ways, Odysseus.
The wiles of man.
They've served you well up till now.
You'll regret this. I swear by the gods.
What do you know of gods?
That selfish bastard! I'll kill him.
Forget him. We'll do it ourselves.
-What's the plan?
It's not a stupid question.
It is when I haven't got an answer.
Trojan spy on the plain.
You waiting to see if we are leaving, boy?
Answer the King!
How many men has Hector got? How many horses?
You know this girl?
She means nothing to you?
One hour. Or you know what they'll do to her.
What does it feel like to see things?
Like the most wonderful and terrible thing in the world.
I glimpse beauty for a moment.
Pure white light.
And then I see the truth.
Did you know all along
why Paris must leave?
I saw that he would destroy the city.
Is there really no way he can come back?
Not if he's alive.
Prince Hector wants to speak to you.
Asked me to take over.
HORSES NEIGH AND HOOVES THUNDER
He's done it.
City of horses no more.
Signal the attack.
My sword. Now.
Your brother did well.
You should learn from him.
You see? They didn't need me.
Never underestimate Odysseus.
The horses! They're gone from the stables.
-They're gone, all of them!
-We still have men.
-What, against chariots? Horses?
What's going on?
Someone's let the horses go,
all of them, and the Greeks are attacking.
Get the men out there. Now.
To the wall!
Who the hell are you?
What are you doing in my rooms?
Writing a letter.
To you, actually.
You're a traitor, Lord Pandarus.
THUD AND CLINK OF STEEL
GASPING AND GURGLING
May I? I've been walking all night.
What are you doing here?
I spent the night at my father's cottage, but...
Agelaus isn't your father.
Why aren't you in the city?
I can't be there any more.
What about your Spartan queen?
Why are you here?
I was just walking all the paths.
Well, you should go.
What's his name?
That's a nice name.
Where's his father?
In the fields with the herd.
He gets up early, all the men do.
-I need to go.
-Let me meet your husband.
You don't understand, do you? People know it was you.
They've lost family, friends.
Whole villages burnt.
I have to go.
Move! Move! Move!
Aphrodite, why have you done this to me?
Paris is hunted by the Greeks and returns to his former life, leaving Helen without an ally in Troy just as Pandarus's investigation gathers momentum. The Trojans attempt to take advantage of the divisions within the Greek camp.