"Hercules and the Assassin" is the fourth episode of Hercules.
During the opening narration, the Narrator introduces Pericles, the leader of classical Athens, Greece, who the episode prominently features. He begins to explain Pericles's accomplishments when one of the Muses, Thalia, interrupts him. She suggests he sing about Pericles instead, so he does, and Thalia soon joins him. They describe him as a wise and just leader and city planner, and Ares realizes his death would be a great loss to Athens. Hercules meets Tempest, an Amazonian warrior, and asks Philoctetes if he could borrow his spear in order to impress her. But Phil insists that Hercules isn't ready to use it yet, and should instead practice his aim with an easier-to-use throwing weapon: a common junior javelin. So Hercules steals Phil's spear and tries to impress Tempest by throwing it. However, when he throws the spear, it nearly kills Pericles, the leader of Athens.
But Hercules's mistake actually foiled the latest of a string of failed assassination attempts against Pericles, which were committed by Minister Clion under Ares's orders, because the god promised to give him Pericles's position if he succeeded. City-state trooper Chipacles, Athens' chief of security, has vowed to protect Pericles and catch the assassin. His discovery of Phil's spear leads him to believe that Phil is the assassin, resulting in his arrest. While Icarus and Cassandra plead Phil's case, Hercules teams up with Tempest to catch the true assassin. Despite Icarus's impressive use of legal jargon, and the fact that another attempt on Pericles's life was made during the trial (which Hercules and Tempest thwarted), Phil is still sentenced to death, as are Icarus and Cassandra for trying to defend him.
Hercules thwarts the execution during another failed attempt on Pericles's life, in which Clion reveals himself as the real assassin. After Hercules and Chipacles join forces against Clion, he begs Ares for help, who empowers him into a towering hulk with an axe in the hopes that he'll use his new strength to wreak havoc upon Athens and finally kill Pericles. Athena, discovering Ares' treacherous activities, agrees to give Hercules any one weapon he chooses to stop him. Much to the surprise of everyone else besides Phil, Hercules chooses a junior javelin, which he uses to trip Clion and defeat him. Athena gloats at Ares for his failed attempt to take over her city, declaring "Athens is #1". Tempest has gained a newfound respect for Hercules as a warrior, and agrees to spend more time with him.
- Tate Donovan as Hercules
- Jennifer Jason Leigh as Tempest
- French Stewart as Icarus
- Sandra Bernhard as Cassandra
- Robert Costanzo as Philoctetes
- Frank Welker as Pegasus
- Gilbert Gottfried as Clion
- Earl Hindman as Pericles
- Mike Connors as Chipacles
- Jay Thomas as Ares
- Jane Leeves as Athena
- Roz Ryan as Thalia
- Robert Stack as Bob the Narrator
- Tress MacNeille as Clion's Wife
- Hero Rule 33: You gotta crawl before you can walk.