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Name: Iolaus
Fandom: Hercules: The Legendary Journeys
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Iolaus is a regular character on the television show Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, played by Michael Hurst. He is the best friend of the demigod Hercules, and grew up with him in the same village. They went to Cheiron's Academy together, fought in their first war together, and have been traveling Greece to deal with monsters, warlords, gods and demons together ever since.

Fanon and Fannish Debates

  • While the actor who portrayed Iolaus has gray green eyes, Michael Hurst occasionally wore blue contact lenses "to mess with the fans." He wore the contacts in just a few episodes but they included a few memorable ones. As a consequence, the Iolaus that was written about in fandom had very bright, very blue eyes. His blue eyes are often a key point in the description of the character. In bad writing, he has blue "orbs." Kevin Sorbo (Hercules) actually has blue eyes, which may also account for the fan writer insistence on a blue-eyed Iolaus.
  • the Golden Hunter. This epithet was never attached to Iolaus on the show, but it became very popular in fandom, to the extent that Iolaus is often called just 'the hunter' in fanfic. (And never, for example, 'the warrior' or 'the mortal', or even 'the blacksmith'.) The fanon apparently got back to the show's creators, which resulted in official "Iolaus, the Golden Hunter" T-shirts.
  • the Pallid Hunter. Cf. We Always Hurt the One We Love, an essay by Helena Handbasket, which describes (and derides) the fanon where Iolaus is a wimpy, pathetic figure who always needs to be rescued, and who is treated appallingly badly by Hercules.
  • Iolaus' sons: most fanfic that deals with Iolaus' and Ania's ill-fated offspring suggest one child, almost always a son. Sometimes there are two sons, sometimes three. In an interview, Michael Hurst stated that he was told that Iolaus had two sons, and in Maze of the Minotaur Iolaus refers to the difficulties of being a single parent after Ania's death. The children are never mentioned again.


Example Fanworks



There is a huge amount of Iolaus fanfic of all genres, including gen adventures and hurt/comfort stories, slash (Hercules/Iolaus, Iolaus/Ares, Iolaus/Autolycus, and other pairings), and het (Iolaus/Ania, Iolaus/Niobe, Iolaus/Nebula, Iolaus/Xena, Iolaus/Gabrielle, and many others). Unlike in many fandoms, the sexual undercurrent between Hercules and Iolaus was quietly acknowledged by the actors and everyone involved, if only because in myth, Heracles had sex with everybody including Iolaus, who was his nephew and charioteer.

  • Home is Where the Heart is by LTLJ and Kimberley Rector, one of the many "Iolaus comes back to life" stories written after his death in the fifth season. There is an entire alternate timeline based on this story, including one of the greatest crossover stories of all time, "When Hellmouths Collide," that drops Buffy Sumers and company into the Hercverse.
  • Refiner's Fire by Melisande. Hurt/comfort stories were very popular in the fandom. In this one, Iolaus has to transport an injured Hercules across rough country, with Gabrielle's help.

The Iolausian Library and most of the H:tLJ fan fic sites are dead. A few, including the Less Than Legendary Journeys, survive and several stories are archived at AO3.



Mailing lists

These Yahoo groups are no longer active.

  • Iolaus ML (Yahoo groups)
  • Gold Apple (Yahoo groups) "A fan fiction/discussion list to celebrate Iolaus, Hercules: the Legendary Journeys and fan fiction. We provide a supportive atmosphere for bards to work in and to have fun. Both writers and readers are welcome. Note: this list contains no content rated higher than PG-13."
  • Golden Lust

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