I hope you didn't buy stock in Fake Blood Inc. today, because shares definitely plummeted as a result of some news from Starz. The cable network announced that the upcoming season of the ultra-violent Spartacus franchise will be the series' last, ending its run with three seasons and a prequel.
But let's not dwell on the bad news, Debbie Downer! We've got new info to parse! The final season will be called Spartacus: War of the Damned, probably because that's a pretty good name for a bloody, final season. War of the Damned will be 10 episodes long and get to slicing and dicing in January 2013.
The final season will take place after Sparty and his merry slaves defeat Roman commander Gaius Claudius Glaber, cementing Spartacus's reputation across the land as one bad mofo and guaranteeing that movies and television shows will be made about him in the future.
But why stop one of Starz's most popular series now? I guess history has something to do with it, although I would love to see the network continue the Spartacus saga into modern times (Spartacus Takes Manhattan, Spartacus vs. the 401k, etc.).
Creator Steven S. DeKnight said in a statement that it was all about serving the story. "We did not come to this decision lightly. It was an extremely difficult and emotional decision for my partners and I. Yet, in the end, the story was best served by rolling all of the remaining action and drama of Spartacus's journey into one stunningly epic season that will be extremely satisfying for everyone who's been along for the ride." That's a typical press release quote, but it's worth noting that successful shows usually don't end just because it serves the story (*ahem Dexter and The Office*).
Fare thee well, Spartacus. Your blood and boobs will be missed.
Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom