Many thanks to Jan for the following transcript for the XIP News Archive

Emmy Magazine
August 1999

Strong Suit
by Hoyt Hilsman

<snip of article dealing with other sidekicks>

"One actress who has to deal with a very unusual onscreen relationship is Renee O'Connor, who plays sidekick Gabrielle in the sydicated Xena, Warrior Princess. 'Lucy [Lawless] is quite formidable and obviously dominates the show,' says the diminutive O'Connor. 'There has never been a storyline where my character would step in front of her.'

"However, offscreen, O'Connor describes a different side of the relationship. 'Lucy is like an older sister to me. I'm always learning from her, whether I realize it or not. Our relationship has developed over the course of the years. I started socializing with others [on the show] before I did with her, mostly because Lucy has a daughter at home.'

"The onscreen relationship between Xena and Gabrielle has gotten much attention because of its romantic undertones. But O'Connor describes the bond between the characters this way: 'It's simply a strong love between two people.'

"O'Connor recalls a recent incident on the set during a funeral scene. 'Xena was holding Gabrielle in front of the fire. There were a couple of strangers on the set who had puzzled looks on their faces. But it was really a genuine moment between friends, whatever their sexuality. We are simply portraying soulmates who happen to be women.'"


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