Ares is a character on the television shows Xena: Warrior Princess, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Young Hercules. He was portrayed by New Zealand actor Kevin Tod Smith. Ares is a significant recurring antagonist during the first three seasons, makes a guest appearance in the "coda" episode of season four and was Xena's main love interest during seasons five (as well as being that season's main antagonist, appearing in 10 of the 22 episodes) and six.
Suave, charming, witty, yet ruthless and amoral, Ares often represents, especially in the early seasons, the seductive power of war and the dark side. He repeatedly attempts to lure Xena away from her quest for redemption alongside Gabrielle, and to win her over as his Warrior Queen. He offers her huge armies and historic victories, great wealth and great power, and in later seasons his love, offers which she consistently rejects despite being sometimes tempted.
Much of Ares' relationship with Xena remains ambiguous, including whether he is at least partly redeemed by his love for Xena, or to what extent Xena reciprocates his feelings. He says several times that he "has a thing" for Xena, and this seems to prevent him from killing her, even when pitted against her in deadly combat., yet he pursues her sexually and romantically.
Their relationship prior to the show's timeline is also a mystery. The dialogue in an early episode strongly suggests that this is their first face-to-face meeting;
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