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#1 Mar 26 2012 at 8:48 PM Rating: Good
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Anyone watching the show on Starz? My brother watched it all the time, so I figured I'd check it out. Last week and weekend, I watched all of Season 1, the little prequel, and the remainder of Season 2.

This Friday is the finale of the current season, Vengence.

Overall I'm really liking it. Gripes about historical accuracy aside (seems a lot of people like to whine about it), I loved the way things twisted and turned. For about the first half of the first season, I was interested, but it was mostly just blood and sex. Then it turned around as Batiatus's plans all fell together to frame Solonius. Then during the little prequel between 1 and 2, I really liked seeing Batiatus's plans unfold.

I think they did a pretty decent job of switching actors after the first Spartacus actor died. After a few episodes of the second season, I didn't really notice it. It helped that the flashbacks to the previous season seemed to have been all re-filmed with the new actor, made things blend more easily.
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#2 Mar 27 2012 at 8:28 PM Rating: Decent
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I've been following the series since it started. It's basically eye candy with a decent story. I suppose some might whine about the historical inaccuracies, but you kinda have to if you want to make a good story. I kinda saw it like the series Rome, where the backdrop and major events are historical, but the details and action are completely invented (or significantly modified). Again though, you have to since there's not enough historical information to provide sufficient detail for a series. You have to invent some details, and once you do that, you have to make some changes to make the details you're inventing work as a good story.

All in all, I've been happy with it. I thought that running a prequel series after Andy Whitfield died (technically while he was dying) was a genius move. It allowed them to introduce additional elements and back story they could then use to make Vengeance a better second season. Most directly, we got to see more back story for Crixus and Oenomaus, who historically were major figures in the slave rebellion (which was clearly to be the focus of the second season), but who'd really only been used as foils to Spartacus in the first season. It also gave greater explanation as to why Batiatus and his ludus was so completely screwed up in the first place and some extra history.

I hadn't realized that this Friday's episode would be the last for this season. Looks like they're planning/hoping on another season then, since they can't possibly wrap it up in one more. I'm assuming they'll do the whole "train on the mountain while the Romans camp below thinking they're trapped, then climb down the backside and attack/maul the unsuspecting Romans and then escape" part and leave it there. Since that's what happened historically at least. I'm guessing that they'll kill off Oenomaus maybe (since he was badly injured in the last episode). Either that, or have him escape with them, but given his injury choose to head off on his own somewhere (which is easier to do since he's African in the series, so he could just go home or something). Oenomaus is mentioned historically as one of the early leaders of the rebellion, but then basically disappears from the record. Both Crixus and Sparticus death's were recorded, but not him. So, could die in some unknown way (to the Romans anyway), or leave and therefore not be part of the groups that later get wiped out.


In any case, I have enjoyed the series.
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#3 Mar 27 2012 at 9:36 PM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
I'm assuming they'll do the whole "train on the mountain while the Romans camp below thinking they're trapped, then climb down the backside and attack/maul the unsuspecting Romans and then escape" part and leave it there.


I'm assuming this as well.

I want to see Glaber and Ashur die pretty horribly. Ashur, not because of what he does to Lucretia (bitch deserves it) but what he did to everyone else.
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#4 Mar 31 2012 at 7:24 PM Rating: Good
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It ended well enough.

I wasn't expecting Mira to die so soon into the episode. Five minutes in, BAM, Axe to the chest.

Oenomaus being the only Gladiator warrior to die, kind of unexpected. I figured they wouldn't kill of Crixus (big role, probably have plans in Season 3), but thought Gannicus would be a gone.

I liked how they handled Ashur's death. But I thought Naevia's dialog was a bit cliche, kind of forced. My brother thought that Crixus would be the one to kill Ashur, didn't expect Naevia to do it.

I thought for sure that Lucretia was going to kill Ilithyia and take Spartacus' son to raise as her own in some crazy scheme. I definitely didn't expect her to jump to her death with the child. I assumed that Lucretia's "prophecies" were just an act, but it seems that she actually drove herself crazy. She got so good at convincing others, that she convinced herself. It started out as her just repeating something about the gods that she had said to her husband (in jest/blasphemy), and everyone assumed she was talking about Glaber. She realized what they thought and ran with it. I really didn't think she believed it, and it was all just an act.

I wonder, had Spartacus known that Ilithyia was the true reason behind Varro's death, would he have let her go? As far as he knew, it was all the Magistrate's son's doing. He mentions that his main beef is with Glaber, so he won't kill her. Little did he know...

They really put off Glaber's death til the very last minute though.


Edited, Mar 31st 2012 9:29pm by TirithRR
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#5 Apr 02 2012 at 3:47 PM Rating: Good
I enjoyed it. I was not sure I would warm up to the third season but the transition was easier than I thought it would be and I was hooked again pretty fast.

Is it over now? I mean so many important people and villains are dead now. I know he said he was going to raise an army at the end but really with the (satisfying) death of Glaber and Asher there does not really seem anywhere to go.
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#6 Apr 02 2012 at 3:56 PM Rating: Good
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Just after the finale showed, the director came on a commercial and verified a third season in 2013.

I don't know what they'll move onto. Maybe just more blood/sex as the slaves attack Rome or something.
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#7 Apr 03 2012 at 4:51 PM Rating: Decent
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I'm taking the spoiler tags off, so if you haven't seen the episode, don't read!

TirithRR wrote:
It ended well enough.

Oenomaus being the only Gladiator warrior to die, kind of unexpected. I figured they wouldn't kill of Crixus (big role, probably have plans in Season 3), but thought Gannicus would be a gone.


It looks like they're at least following the major historical events, so Crixus could not die (he dies later after he and Sparticus split forces and go in two different directions). Oenomaus as an historical figure disappears with no record of his death, so he either needed to die or have some reason to leave. Not sure about Gannicus. I like him as a character, so I was hoping he lived, but they certainly might have offed him easily enough.

Quote:
I liked how they handled Ashur's death. But I thought Naevia's dialog was a bit cliche, kind of forced. My brother thought that Crixus would be the one to kill Ashur, didn't expect Naevia to do it.


Am I the only one who was kinda hoping Ashur would live? Frankly, I always thought he was the most interesting character of them all. What I really find interesting is that he was most "fun" and successful when he was scheming and plotting, but in this series he basically plays it straight as a right (left?) hand man to Glaber. And that seems to have been his undoing. He actually did tie his fortune to Glaber and didn't betray him, but got accused and killed for it anyway. Karma, I guess.

To be fair, he'd have no role at all in any season after this anyway, so I guess that was as good a time to bump him off as any.


As to a future season, there's plenty of story left to go, but I don't know how they'll be able to put as much intrigue into it. They've killed off every single character with direct personal ties to the slaves. I'm sure they'll think of a way to do this though.
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#8 Apr 03 2012 at 5:21 PM Rating: Good
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I liked Ashur as a character, but still thought he needed to die.

The last episodes of season one where Batiatus's plans and Ashur's acting came to light were some of my favorite moments in the series. While I liked him in season one and most of season two, he definitely out lived his usefulness and his death was the only thing to look forward to.
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