Xeaphon (character)

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Commander Xeaphon XVIII
Xeaphon.png
Xeaphon in his office at NETDOF.
First appearance Cool Barbie IV - The Uprising (2009)
Last appearance Cool Barbie XV - The Final Battle (2018)
Portrayed by HIM Emperor Jonathan I

Commander Xeaphon XVIII is a fictional character played by Emperor Jonathan I of Austenasia in the Austenasian Television Productions series Cool Barbie.

Descended from Lord Xeaphon VII, a medieval mage of the same name, Xeaphon XVIII is the Guardian of the community of sentient toys which live at his house (known as "Xeaphon VII's Land of Plenty" by the toys), holding ultimate responsibility for their protection and government. He is also an officer in NETDOF, a human military organisation which defends Earth from extraterrestrial threats.

Character development

Origin

The character of Xeaphon - along with the world in which Cool Barbie is set - is derived from a fictional world imagined and built by the now Jonathan I and his sister Crown Princess Caroline in childhood games played from roughly 2001-6, in which he was Xeaphon and she was his sister Moonita. The name "Xeaphon" derived from an incorrect attempt at remembering the name "Xenophon", which had been seen by Jonathan in the computer game Zeus: Master of Olympus.

In the fictional world imagined by the two siblings, Xeaphon functioned as Jonathan's idealized self-insert whereas Moonita was Caroline's. Xeaphon and Moonita were simultaneously wise rulers of the toys, powerful mages, and respected military officers in a global defence force, despite being canonically the same age as Jonathan and Caroline (at that time, both young children). Xeaphon's unrealistically vast skill-set was explained as being a result of adapting to the challenges of life on the run after being temporarily forced out of his home by Wisealise; Moonita's similarly impressive abilities were accepted without question in an attempt to be fair.

Cool Barbie

Xeaphon did not appear, nor was referenced, in the original three Cool Barbie episodes, despite them being solidly set within the world in which the character was based. When scripts for the fifteen ATP episodes were written, Xeaphon's inclusion was inevitable due to the expanded exploration of the fictional world.

The ATP episodes of Cool Barbie can be unofficially divided into two halves. CB.I to CB.VII focus mostly on local threats to the Land, with the focus of these episodes being on plots such as Bubbles pursuing Cool Barbie and Colin attempting to overthrow the government, whereas in the second half of the series - CB.VIII to CB.XV - the events of the episodes have a primarily global significance, mostly dealing with attempts by aliens to subjugate or destroy Earth itself.

In the first half of the series, Xeaphon is not a major character, but rather functions as a remote source of authority for the toys who only appears in-person twice, both to deal with major crises. As the focus of the series expands outwards in its second half, his importance within the series increases until he is a major protagonist, with his role as a NETDOF military officer serving as a link between the local world of the toys he protects and the global stage of the Earth under threat.

Unlike the original games played by Jonathan and Caroline, in which Xeaphon was effectively perfect, the character has flaws in Cool Barbie, and indeed inadvertently causes some of the problems dealt with in later episodes. He is unable to prevent Wisealise taking over the Land in CB.VIII; this leads to Moonita swapping bodies with Cool Barbie at the conclusion of the episode. His attempt to reverse this off-screen leads to Moonita dying in CB.XII, after which he refuses to allow Corporal Barbie to execute Colin; this indirectly leads to the creation of Dominus at the end of CB.XIV.

In CB.XII, the script called for Xeaphon to look distraught and disheveled after the death of Moonita. This led to Jonathan I growing a beard to play the role for that episode, which he then kept.

Appearances

Xeaphon's first on-screen appearance is in CB.IV (2009). He first appears in the background during the introduction to the episode, helping his father Ken the Elder to force out a burglar who has broken into the Land. Later on, at the end of the episode, he arrives with his sister Moonita to successfully reassert the control of his family over the Land and force a second burglar out of the house, foiling the attempt of rogue doll prince Colin to take over the Land.

Xeaphon next appears at the end of CB.VII (2012), chairing a meeting to resolve the conflict that had arisen during that episode between the Land's toy government and a group of protesters. He afterwards confides to the Chancellor that he is concerned about their ability to deal with Colin's expected upcoming attack.

This attack takes place during CB.VIII (2014), as a Uranian invasion of Earth allows Colin's forces to take over the Land with the support of Wisealise, an alien who Xeaphon reveals is an old enemy he has fought against before. Despite the best effort of Xeaphon and his family, Wisealise and Colin are able to temporarily take over the Land, and are only defeated due to the efforts of Moonita and Corporal Barbie. Moonita and Corporal Barbie interfere with an alien weapon charged with powerful magic in order to foil Wisealise's plan, and in doing so find they have switched bodies. The episode ends with Xeaphon realising that due to the powerful explosion of magic, the body-swap is likely to be permanent.

In the Moonita and Xeaphon minisodes (2015), Xeaphon crowns Moonita - now in the body of Corporal Barbie - as the new Queen of the toys. He is then given the Staff of Forest Elves, one of the most powerful magical items in the world, by a group of elves who want him to use it to ensure that (unlike Wisealise) nobody will ever again be able to come close to freeing the powerful spirit beings - the Titans - magically imprisoned beneath the garden of the Land. However, what Xeaphon primarily sees in his acquisition of the Staff is the potential to learn magic powerful enough to reverse the body-swap between his sister and Corporal Barbie.

In CB.IX (2015), Xeaphon deals with the arrival on Earth both of an alien Mysteron and one of Colin's elite soldiers, who end up killing each other, but not before NETDOF is warned of an imminent attack on the Solar System by Wisealise's species, the Scourge. This invasion takes place during CB.X (2016), during which Xeaphon helps arrange the successful defence of Earth and of the Solar System as a whole along with Uranian alien Bubbles, the Elven Emperor, and Corporal Barbie (still in Moonita's body).

Xeaphon next appears in CB.XII (2017). In the previous episode, it had been revealed (but not seen on-screen) that he had attempted to use the magic of the Staff of Forest Elves to reverse the body-swap, successfully restoring Corporal Barbie to her body but resulting in Moonita entering a comatose state from which it is unsure when she will wake up. In CB.XII, Xeaphon is telephoned by the Doll Senate and informed that Colin has freed Kronos, the most powerful of the Titans, and that the Staff of Forest Elves is needed to re-imprison him. Xeaphon informs the Senate that Moonita has passed away in hospital, and later arrives at the Land disheveled and clearly upset, losing his temper at Corporal Barbie when she suggests executing Colin after Xeaphon defeats him and Kronos.

In CB.XIII and CB.XIV (2017), Xeaphon unsuccessfully tries to track down a mysterious creature which has assassinated members of the toy government. He is then locked in a room with Corporal Barbie by the assassin's master, the Eagle, when the latter arrives with his army to take over the Land and free Colin. Colin drains the magical power of the Eagle, which together with that which he gains or has gained from other sources is enough for him to free, defeat, and possess Kronos. The amalgamation of all this magical power makes Colin the most powerful being in the world, and Xeaphon and Corporal Barbie remain locked away as Colin - now having renamed himself Dominus - announces that he will commence a conquest of Earth.

Xeaphon's last appearance was in Cool Barbie's series finale, CB.XV (2018). Having escaped from the locked room, Xeaphon unsuccessfully helps the Elven Emperor fight Dominus, teleporting away after the Emperor is killed. The majority of the episode is set one year later, in a world ruled by Dominus. Xeaphon, now on the run, collects and successfully uses magical artifacts with the help of Cool Barbie in order to both destroy Dominus and to prevent a Scourge attack on Earth which the latter had provoked.