Rome

Follow
HBO (ended 2007)

USER EDITOR

No Editor

User Score: 0

SUBMIT REVIEW

Rome Fan Reviews (122)

8.8
out of 10
Average
5,250 votes
  • bring it back

    10
    Hbo screwed up by canceling this show. It was the best show they have ever done and the only one my wife and I could agree upon.
  • Perfect show

    9.0
    I loved this series. Started at a great point and finished well. Well worth watching and gets you addicted to watching the next episode. Much like watching Spartacus in many ways but with more emphasis on story and writing rather then slow motion action and sex. Should also note that many freedoms are taken on the historical facts.
  • Rome -series1

    10
    Sumptuous - fantastic all round . The script, the sets, and the acting was fantastic, right through the cast list.

    And it,couldn't help itself it was so goddam sexy too . Lindsay Duncan, and Polly Walker - phwoar!
  • Politics, war, power, lust, friendship, loyalty, betrayal, and any other of the strongest human emotions that give life its various flavours and upside downs are shown in this show in a delicate and fascinating fashion.

    10
    This show simply puts emotions on the table, it's a vortex of greatness from start to beggining while describing the political situation of the time and the roles of each and every person has something to do with the plot making it thicker and far more interesting.

    Presenting a cast of excellent actors, Rome's description of the things that took Rome from the Republic to the Empire is different from the many others because it involves a lot more than just the main players, from the soldiers to senators and it makes it a far richer enviroment which can practically make you feel involved.
  • This show needs to go back on air! It's surfacing on the internet, i found it. I want more!

    10
    My Girlfriend suggested to watch this series. She downloaded it from the internet. I told her no. But after watching the first episode, I was addicted. HBO needs to put this show back on the air. They need to reair the first and second seasons, and start production of the third and fourth season. I want to know what happens to titus pullo, and his sworn brother veranis lucias. I want to see what happens with everything. I'll even subscribe to HBO and start a facebook page and fill it with supporters. The Show MUST go on, and I must insist.
  • i loved the series Rome I've becomeobsessed with it,

    10

    there's nothing better then hard cor drama sex and violence, the detail in Rome is amazing, the story line is as history was, the actors used for thecharacters are fantastic i love them all, i cant tell you sad i am, the lack of viewers has forced the show to be cancelled, i want a series 3, there is so much more history to be told

  • Rome is a show that's hard to pin down. Is it good or is it bad? It's hard to tell. One thing's for sure, though, it's violent, sexy and likes to get naked a lot. And that's not nessecarily a bad thing.

    7.0
    When I first read about the concept, I imagined Deadwood... Deadwood with added Rome. And that's pretty much what the show is like: there's graphic violence, nudity, sex and power struggles between the most important people in the city.

    Such content doesn't automatically make a show great, there has to be something special driving it all. And that's where Rome seems to falter.

    While the set design, costume design, acting and writing manage to avoid the all-too-common problem of looking and feeling created rather than recreated, the show isn't that spectacular. It doesn't seem to have that... special something that The Sopranos and Deadwood both had.

    That's not to say Rome is a terrible show: it's not that bad and it's well worth a look if you're interested in the time period or HBO's previous offerings, but it's not a great show... at least not yet.

    With a bit of spring cleaning, Rome could be an amazing, genre-defining show. It could the best show of a season. Bold, underline and italic those 'could be''s.
  • Not quite a masterpiece, but a guilty pleasure indeed

    6.3
    "When in Rome, take off your clothes and overact." - Jonathan Ross

    Granted, this is a quite lavish production, and better than most dramas on TV nowadays. Yet I am not quite in the camp that thinks it's a masterpiece. It is however, very watchable, and let's face it there's enough debauchery in there in all sorts of ways. Definitely keep anyone overly sensitive or uptight away from this show.
  • Et Tu HBO?

    5.0
    This show is a historical disaster! Brutus single handedly charges a Roman legion? A Roman mindlessly picks peaches before he murders Cicero? Mark Anthony eats bread with no idea how the battle at Philippi is raging? Brutus and Cassius are killed on the same day? Brutus and Cassius have no idea Anthony’s army is approaching until one day before the battle? Come on! Did the writers of this show ever open a history book? This show is like a Looney Tune cartoon. “No cinnamon on my birthday cake because it makes me sneeze?” Ahhh! Gaius Cassius Longinus was not Side Show Bob!

    Why not tell the truth? If HBO is going to write a fictional history, why use the names of real people? The real Romans were so much more interesting than these cardboard cutouts. Does HBO really believe their writers can improve on the human drama of this period? At least Robert Graves got the big parts correct.

    This show is painful to watch. The Romans spoke Latin, not colloquial British slang. This is NOT a historical drama. This is a soap opera fiction.

    I enjoy watching the show because it is so beautifully filmed but the story, YIKES!
  • Absolutely Enthralling

    10
    The history its always the same, but there are a lot of ways to read it. This is what Rome did, it describe the rise and fall of the biggest emperor of Rome Caius Julius Caesar from the eyes of two of his soldiers. Watching Rome its like studying the roman empire and at the same time have fun with that, its amazing. In Rome you will found Political intrigue, great acting, sex, violence, booze, gambling, prostitution all things that were always omitted in the others "roman movies", here you can really smell the air of Rome, its dirtiness, all the political maneuvering with all the love affairs behind.
    This show will give you a brand new concept of Rome.
  • HBO delivers one of it's best series to date...

    9.5
    That is right Rome is excellent, from the first episode I knew that this would become one of my alltime favourite TV shows. I was amazed at how brilliant this show looked, I mean look at the sets, costumes and make up it looks like Ancient Rome. This could pass as the real Rome 2000 years ago. The acting is superb the cast is excellent everyone shines on screen I cant pick a favourite character. The writing and Directing is also excellent. I enjoyed every episode of this show and wish ther was more. Rome will go down as one of the great shows. HBO did a great job and in my opinion this is certainly HBO's best.
  • Quality historical epic. **Slight spoilers**

    9.0
    Rome is excellent. Lots of intrigue and interesting characters. Loosely accurate, but still quality storytelling, even if not a true story. Beautiful sets and costumes. Not an absolutely beautiful cast but I think that just makes it feel more authentic. I dont think all prominent historical figures were necessarily gorgeous. They were moderately attractive. Especially Octavia who everyone said was beautiful but was only moderately pretty. Maybe she was back then, when they didnt have a TV that showed them Hollywood where all the most beautiful ppl in the world gather. The most attractive character, imo, was Vorenus.

    He is also my favourite character. I dont know why I like him so much. He was arguably a terrible father and husband, but I dont really hold it against him. In that time period and with their circumstances, it wasnt really his fault. He tried really hard. I also really liked him in season 2 after his wife had died and his children ran away. He became a gang leader and did the job well, as he did in the 13th Legion. He was an excellent fighter, not because of rage, brutality, and pleasure like his friend Pullo, but because of honour and loyalty to his men and his country (or whatever they called it back then), and to protect those he loved.

    I also enjoyed Atia. You have to admire her ambition and cunning. How she grasps onto any bits of power she can find. She goes through so many schemes and failures. But in the end she is mother to the Emperor, and there is no way she is going to let anyone share her glory. As in the scene between her and Livia, which I really, really love.
  • A no holds barred gore fest laden with copious amounts of sex; Rome shows us life in the raw. The stories are well plotted and a committed cast brings every aspect of their characters to life – every aspect.

    10
    Rome follows a well trodden path of tracing the fall of Julius Caesar and the rise of Octavian (later Augustus) Caesar. The lives of the rich and poor are explored as are the cultures and values held at that time. This is the strong point of the series, it allows us to appreciate the hardships of the era and help to understand the motivations behind its leaders.

    The best way to absorb the scale and grandeur of this series is to watch the DVDs in as short a sitting as possible, although the final scenes with Cleopatra and Marc Anthony drag too long and you will find yourself screaming for that asp to hurry up and do its job. Some battle scenes are too short however the engagement at Philippi and gladiator sequence are so well done they might as well have been deleted scenes from 'Gladiator'. The gratuitous sex scenes can be confrontational and unexpected but it is not over done and does not come close to the standards set by 'Caligula'.

    Rome is epic, it shows life as it was, complete with superstition and rampant sexual activity. This series has everything a committed viewer could ask for: big sets, complex characters, labyrinthine plots, large battles, grand speeches and copious amounts of sexual activity. Watch it!
  • All roads lead to...

    9.7
    I love the idea of these historical shows like Rome and the Tudors. Honestly I was amazed at how great Rome turned out. I love Roman History and was very happy to see them somewhat keep to the facts, with a few dramatic twists along the way. It's HBO so there is quite a bit of nudity and sex, also lots of death and violence. It is very much an adult show. Even if you aren't a fan of the history, I think they made this show interesting enough for the newcomer. As long as you don't mind it being in a period setting. The production for this was fabulous, and it is apparent why they couldn't continue with the large budget they must have been working with. But I think it sits well with 2 seasons. I have to say that I prefer Season 2 as I am a fan of later characters such as Gaius Octavian, Marcus Agrippa and the Marc Anthony/Cleopatra story. It's also nice to see everything fall into place as far as where the twists end and the history as we learn it is established. Get in some good TV and history with Rome...
  • a very good re-telling of history combined with dramatic television

    9.5
    One of the most original and lavish historical dramas to make it to television in a LONG time. A good mix of drama and historical fact combined with episodic television elements to the keep the audience happy from week to week. A no-holds-barred re-telling of events... this WAS real, it DID happen!!

    Something that only HBO could produce with a talented and international cast told from THEIR perspective. You get the visceral true approach of what the times and places where truly like - part documentary, part drama - beyond compare. It is a shame that the series has been canceled.
  • A truly mind blowing series.

    10
    Rome is a series that captures the rise and fall of Julius Caesar. Even though Rome is about Caesar and the eventual rise of Octavian as the first Roman Emperor, Rome also focuses on two roman soldiers and their struggle to make their lives outside the army successful. Rome also has a focus on the Roman elite and the conspiracies that surround them.

    Rome is filled with violence, sex, intrigue, and drama, which makes it a must see series. The characters of Rome are so well developed that you are drawn into their lives and actually feel like you're watching them as they lived thousands of years ago.

    As for the historical aspect of the show, Rome stays pretty true to the events that played out in Ancient Roman times. I think that the show could have continued on with the focus of Octavian and his role in changing the face of the Roman social order and eventually crowning himself Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome.
  • I bought this show on a lark, I was shopping and I just bought it which I am so glad I did.

    7.5
    I bought this show on a lark, I was shopping and I just bought it. I don't usually do things like that, especially with shows that are really expensive to buy on dvd, but I am so glad I did with Rome. Historical drams usually go right over my head but Rome isn't like most historical drams. It's a historical drama that's bloody, dark and extremely heavy with troubled characters that make you feel conflicted. I think Rome was the start, or came around at the start of a great trend. Historical dramas that aren't totally romanticized, they're real in an extremely raw way. Both seasons are great and in some ways I like them both equally but in others season two was better. Season two had the better episodes, the more memorable episodes. And even though it had a different feel then the first season I think it was immensely enjoyable and full of emotion, the kind that sometimes make you cry when you watch certain episodes.
  • "An intimate drama of love and betrayal, masters and slaves, and husbands and wives, 'Rome' chronicles the epic times that saw the fall of a Republic and the creation of an empire." - From http://www.hbo.com/rome/

    10
    For some strange reason it seems a lot of people haven't watched this show, so I thought I'd educate the world about it as best I could. I'll start with HBO's introduction : " Half a century before the dawn of Christianity, Rome has become the wealthiest city in the world, a cosmopolitan metropolis of one million people - epicenter of a sprawling empire. Founded on principles of shared power and fierce personal competition, the Republic was created to prevent any one man from seizing absolute control. It is a society where soldiers can rise up from provincial commoners to become national heroes, even leaders of the Republic. But as the ruling class became extravagantly wealthy, the foundations have crumbled, eaten away by corruption and excess, and the old values of Spartan discipline and social unity have given way to a great chasm between the classes. "

    The show's first season aired on HBO in August 2005, and most of my friends haven't even heard about it, nor have I seen it on many TV.com Favorites list. Rome is one of the best, most well-written drama series to come in a long time. The character portrayals and the epic scale of the sets all move the show towards absolute perfection, which is something a handful of shows even come close to these days. We've been pretty much thrown into lawyer and doctor and high school drama shows over the years, so it's nice to see that someone is doing something non-traditional, and "daring". The story of Rome moves around the lives of two Roman soldiers, Lucius Vorenus (Kevin McKidd) and Titus Pullo (Ray Stevenson). The role of Caesar is played by the talented Ciaran Hinds, and the rest of the cast is realistic, believable, and downright stunning.

    I don't know what else to tell you; if you haven't watched this show, then you're obviously missing out on one of the best moments of television...
  • A truly mind blowing series.

    10
    Rome is a series that captures the rise and fall of Julius Caesar. Even though Rome is about Caesar and the eventual rise of Octavian as the first Roman Emperor, Rome also focuses on two roman soldiers and their struggle to make their lives outside the army successful. Rome also has a focus on the Roman elite and the conspiracies that surround them.

    Rome is filled with violence, sex, intrigue, and drama, which makes it a must see series. The characters of Rome are so well developed that you are drawn into their lives and actually feel like you're watching them as they lived thousands of years ago.

    As for the historical aspect of the show, Rome stays pretty true to the events that played out in Ancient Roman times. I think that the show could have continued on with the focus of Octavian and his role in changing the face of the Roman social order and eventually crowning himself Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome.
  • realistic, informative, shocking= entertaining

    9.8
    Rome. a show based on the rise and fall of Julius Ceasar is not only about hi.They show the struggles of Lucius Vorenus and Titus Pullo who are roman soldiers. they also show you the life of the rich and royal like Atia of the Julii and Octavia of the Julii which are relatives of Ceasar. this show is really good and exciting but also has strong sex scene and fighting scenes which are not sutablel for children. after every episode you which you could see the next one. its a great show with thta is historically accurate and at the same time simply amazing.
  • Two roman characters and the things they battle in their daily lives.

    9.0
    This show was much better the first few seasons. Last season I felt that it lost a lot of the excitement in had in the prior episodes. I think the fact that a lot of the main characters died has a lot to do with that. I'm not much of a history show person, I'm normally into criminal or medical, but this show got my attention. It would be nice if it got it back. Gave my boyfriend and I a show we could watch together. It's still a good show, just needs some new main characters to bring back some excitement.
  • Rome: historical porno, snuff flick or simple soap opera HBO style?

    7.0
    I felt like I needed to wait a few weeks after I finished watching HBO's sweeping historical drama, Rome, before writing this review. The reason is that I find myself still questioning whether or not this was truly a great show, or simply a medicore one with some great moments thrown in.

    I found the premise of Rome very compelling, but I can't get over the fact that there were so many less-than-great scenes mixed in with the good. Why is that? It seems to me that reason is that Rome was made for HBO and therefore, it had to be sexxed up to meet the expectations of HBO subscribers. I'm not a prude, but I honestly think it was a bit over the top. The same goes for some of the story lines. Many served no real purpose, they just seemed contrived and reminded me of afternoon soap operas. Frankly, I think they took more away than they added.

    Despite these flaws, I think there were still a lot of great scenes and that some of the story lines were really fun to follow. I also think the show gave us a great view of the Roman empire from a lot of different levels and that it was a worthy effort. So, my overall opinion of the show remains mixed. In the end, I guess this is a show I can recommend on DVD but buyers should beware, if you're like me you might wear out the chapter skip button on your remote control.
  • Rome is a show that is so realistic that the viewer feels they are transported 2,000 years into the past to witness the events for themselves.

    10
    Rome is set in ancient Rome during and after the rule of Julius Ceaser. This show really captures the nature of the ancient world, which includes the beauty and violence that consumes it. The people of Rome surrvived at any means neccesary and they fought thooth and nail to work their to the top or to keep alive. Rome cptures all of the scheming and conspiracies that go along with the struggle for survival. Rome set and wardrobe are other fantastic devices that makes this show so wonderful. They really capture the beauty that is Rome. The veiwer gets sucked into the realistic world that HBO creates, and they feel that they are actually transported 2,000 years into the past and witnessing these events for themselves. If only HBO could find more funding and transport us back to Rome once more.
  • Rome: The saga of Lucius Vorenus and Titus Pullo

    9.0
    Rome is the HBOs best series.
    Deadwood, Carnivale and the others are also great/Deadwood is one of my favorite/, but this one is more monumental.
    Like Deadwood, its about history that really happened. /but that was a stupid line, because everyone knows that./
    The first season is about Caesars life and death. And The second is about how his son, Octavianus avange him, and kill the traitors of the republic. This whole big story is being told by 2 soldier, from the 13. legion: Lucius Vorenus and Titus Pullo.
    You can see how this two brave warriors friendship survives through wars, dictators and choosing sides. If you are bored by the historybook, watch this series, and you will know everything... ;)
    /Of course, dont tell your history teacher that Cleopatras son, Caesarion, was from a footsoldier, Titus Pullo. Maybe she wont believe in that. ;)/
  • Should never have been canceled.

    8.8
    Rome was a great show about the history of Rome back in the day. Rome should never have been canceled and in my opinion they rushed through the history in the second season.
    the cast in Rome was one of the greatest things about this show they made me believe that these characters where like this, my favourite characters are Mark Anthony and Titus Pulo.
    Rome is a multiple Emmy Award-winning historical drama, produced in Italy for television by the BBC and HBO.
    The show ran for three years and in those years it had been nominated for 14 Emmy Awards.
    Rome was a great show and should be still on TV.
  • Killer show for a history buff like me. 1st season a masterpiece!

    9.6
    Rome Season 1 is one of the greatest seasons of television I have ever seen. Mixing history, political intrigue, action, drama, and a little comedy, HBO's Rome is an excellent watch.

    Rome sticks mainly to truth in it's retelling of the early Roman Empire, deviating only slightly from the history books, which is understandable for screenplay. The fictional characters added add flavor and comedy to keep the series interesting and edgy.

    The second season is not quite up to the level set by the first season, but all in all is still a good season.

    Too bad the production costs were so high and the show had to be cancelled. Still, the 2 seasons we got were well worth it!
  • Simply a fine display that there still greatness in cinema aside the typical hollywood BS.

    9.0
    If you havent missed on your history class alot the story wouldt show you anything you dont know. But aside that the series bring you a well know story and with great skill turned into someting not only worth watching but exciting, and interesting. Everything kept simple as it is and emotions displayd as they should be - more natural rather than overkill drama. The actors bring more than a good play. The show has no critical flaws. The screen play is good enough. The atmosphere is verry well done. And you get a brake from the usual stream of "nothing special" shows. They may have displayd less sexual scenes so the series can shoot for a even larger audience, never the less anybody but narrow-minded people should find the sexual scences be well measured. Overall its not the greatest thing out there but its certanly one of the great ones. Too bad they didnt try to expand it, it would certanly be worth watching if its made with the same skill. The makers probably feared the after events wouldnt be that interesting to the audience. Some may say that its more attractive because its rather earthbound but its still is a worthy act of film making. And certanly doesnt lack skill or grace wich you can see in very few pictures these days. Others may say that its fine beacause its not an attempt at someting new but surely the greatness of it cant simply be dismissed. Alot of people would preffer old things of quality than new things that lack it.

    So if you want to try someting you dont see every day on tv. Try Rome. Its only 2 seasons, but more than enough to make you satisfied with it.
  • Great But Too Short Series

    9.5
    Rome was a tremendous series that was filmed by the BBC and broadcast by HBO in the US. The show was quite costly to make, thus the short, two-year lifespan. The sets are visually stunning and quite detailed. The acting is first rate and, although not exactly accurate in its historical timeline, it more closely mirrors actual events than most other productions about the Roman Empire. The first season of the show focuses on Julius Caesar's rise and fall from power and season two focuses on Octavian's rise to emperorship. There is quite a bit a sex and violence, but nothing gratuitous.
  • Vis et Bellum, Sexus et Ardor , Familia et Proditio : Vita in Antiquus Rome (Violence and War, Sex and Love, Secrets and Betrayal: Life in Ancient Rome)

    9.8
    I wasn’t going to watch this show but my family were going on at me to, as it “would help me with my classics” I’m glad they did because even though I haven’t learnt much that helped me with my Classics A-Level, this was a fantastic show and I’m truly sad that its gone.

    Season 1

    In the course of history Rome covered the time from Caesar’s conquering of Gaul (modern day France) in 52 BC to Caesar’s murder in 44 BC
    This season was uneven there was plenty to enjoy, but there were also many flaws. The sets and costumes were gorgeous, a lot of attention had obviously been paid to them and even though they may not have been factually correct all of the time both costumes and the sets were wonderful to look at. The sets especially as they were done on such a large scale.
    The actors in the show were also wonderful. Each actor played his or her part wonderfully and made the whole show very believable.
    The main flaw then in the first season was the writing. Although the overall storyline of the show was very strong, there were parts were it was let down by the writing. For instance in the early part of the season the show felt very stop/start and efforts to fill in the time gaps were clumsily done. Sometimes it was difficult for the audience to know exactly what was going on and how it related to the scenes before it. Another way in which the writing let the show down a bit was some of the character dialogue which was cheesy and often inaccurate.
    The season was slow to start but it quickly gathered pace getting better with every episode.

    Main Storylines:

    Caesar- Dictator?- Obviously the main historical setting for the show as we follow Caesar conquering Gaul and the proceeding to dominate Rome. Although Caesar does display many dictatorial tendencies, it is also possible to see that he is not all bad in his lenient treatment of both Vorenus and Pullo in Pharsalus and of his enemies. This is not the most enjoyable storyline of the series probably because it has a lot to do with politics which at the best of times can be complicated but the writers sometimes fail to fill in the gaps in season 1 leaving some of this storyline to be somewhat of a mystery

    Atia vs. everyone- Atia is true queen b**** is this season. She manipulates and schemes against everyone in her life, to ensure that she is well taken care off. She is hugely blunt leading to many comical scenes. Her scheming knows no limits even killing her daughter’s husband to keep her power.
    This inevitably leads to Atia acquiring many enemies, Servilia being the most significant of them all. She continually curses Atia and all through her own scheming against Caesar, she has one eye on revenge on Atia. The two spar wonderfully often being completely civil with a subtle undertone of hate. A wonderfully written rivalry.

    Vorenus, baby daddy?- The story of Niobe’s infidelity is an interesting one because apart from the early episodes where the story is dealt with (Lyde announcing her hate for sister Niobe, Evander being killed By Pullo and Octavian) and the final episode with a few subtle reminders along the way, for the most Niobe, Vorenus and their family are happy. They have financial troubles and are often separated by war but they love each other and are happy. That’s probably what males this storyline so poignant and sad. What Niobe did, in Roman times warrants her death and when the secrets are all revealed in the final episode of the season, her death is shocking and most importantly heart-rending. To see this family torn apart is shocking and heart breaking.

    Pullo and Vorenus: BFF’s- The show is mostly revolved around the tale of these two soldiers. At the beginning of the show they hate each other but to watch their tenuous friendship grow is wonderful and incredibly sweet. Even though they fight during the season over Pullo’s violent streak, Vorenus always comes through for Pullo as shown in the gladiatorial ring. A lovely story of friendship.

    Favourite episodes:

    The Ram has touched the Wall: Scheming a plenty in this episode with Atia publicly outing Caesar and Servilia’s relationship causing him to break up with her and her in turn to curse both Caesar and Atia. Octavian and Pullo are also scheming this time to protect and avenge Vorenus’ family by killing Niobe’s lover Evander. A sensational mix of sex, scandal and violence, this is the first truly addictive episode of Rome.

    The Spoils: While Pullo’s dangerous ‘job’ leads to him being sentenced for murder, Servilia and Brutus plan Caesar’s murder. A stunningly violent episode, as the show gears up for the season finale. Pullo in the gladiatorial ring is both utterly captivating and difficult to watch. It is a highly violent scene but very well done.

    Kalends of February: A brilliant season finale. All the storylines come to a head with Vorenus finding out the truth about Niobe and her son and Caesar being brutally and sensationally murdered on the Senate floor. Both threads are handled wonderfully so that they explode at the same time. The two deaths at the episode are again well done, one being predictable and the other (Niobe’s) being a lot more shocking and heartbreaking.

    Favourite Characters:

    Atia: A wonderful villain, she dominated her children and manipulated everyone around her. She was hated by many but always provided great entertainment. Her relationship with Mark Antony was in this season amusing as they played power politics as was her attempts to gain favour with Caesar. I loved her catty comments about and to people especially Servilia.

    Octavian: Just a boy in this season, he is sweet and intelligent. He isn’t easily manipulated by his mother or sister but does their bidding probably for a quiet life. His relationship with Pullo was sweet and their killing of Niobe’s lover was shocking but entertaining to watch.

    Mark Antony: Arrogant and sarcastic, James Purefoy shone in this role. He managed to bring humour to the show but also managed to do violence and anger wonderfully. His love of women wasn’t his best character trait but it was his relationship with Atia that was most interesting. He wouldn’t let her manipulate him but in the end he always came back to her.

    Lucius Vorenus: Stoic by nature, this character took a while to grow on me, but once he thawed out, he was a very likeable character. He did what he did for his love of his family and Rome and his undivided loyalty to Caesar despite his personal thoughts was very honourable. His friendship with Pullo especially saving him from the gladiators towards the end of the season was very fun to watch.

    Titus Pullo: His cheeky nature lightened many of the darker storylines and I loved watching his and Vorenus’ friendship grow. He was also very sweet over his love for Eirene though his killing of her husband was shocking and cruel, though not out of character for a soldier like him.

    Season 2

    Historically this season picks up from Caesars death in 44 BC to Mark Antony’s death and Octavian’s triumph in 30 BC. The show picked up pretty much from where season 1 left off and to the shows credit, they did a pretty good job of keeping a strong continuity between the two seasons. But one thing that doesn’t continue from season 1 is the unevenness of the season; season 2 is consistently good, I don’t think there are any weak episodes. The writing is a lot stronger this season with the characters being a lot more developed and believable. The writers also do a good job of filling in the numerous time gaps between events on screen. This season I think the writers were a little stretched for ideas for Vorenus and Pullo and essentially had to construct a whole new storyline and set of supporting characters for them. This ultimately meant that the story of the upper class characters was a lot more interesting. Also a little strange was the storyline given to Timon and his Jewish brother. Though intriguing, it wasn’t quite explained well and it seemed to disappear almost as abruptly as it began so seemed a little filler to me.
    This season though contains fewer episodes, is spread over a longer time span and I think the main flaw is that even though the characters age and have aged considerably most of the actors have not. The notable exceptions are the children of Vorenus and Octavian all of whom get new actors who are far more capable of playing the more demanding role given to them. This is especially the case for Vorena (the elder) and Octavian Caesar. The actors who played the child versions of these characters were both rather sweet but the adult characters are lot more bitter and vicious and the actors change works well.
    I wasn’t entirely pleased with the ending. It was an incredibly sad episode no doubt and well-acted but certain loose endings could’ve been tied up better. Even though history dictates I always feel that Antony truly loved Atia as well as Cleopatra, so I didn’t appreciate his histrionics when she ‘died’ (that said James Purefoy did a wonderful job) I’m not sure Atia really got an ending, but at least her inner **** re-appeared after being missing for a large part of the season. I did enjoy however they way Vorenus and Pullo’s stories ended. Vorenus’ death was so sad, but at least he got to see his children before the end. Pullo taken Caesarion was a good move also and I liked that he now had the son he always wanted.

    Main Storylines:

    Vorenus; leader of the pack- Given a much smaller role in this season, Vorenus and Pullo forget their army life and take control of the Aventine. There they are faced with a great deal of problems. Caesar’s death has left the city in chaos and Vorenus struggles to control it. His violent methods only lead to a violent gang war, his softly- softly approach leads to the other leaders thinking they can overcome Vorenus. The storyline of the Aventine is interesting although the shear amount of new characters make it a little difficult to come to grips with. Vorenus as a father is an another good storyline and I feel myself aching for his children to forgive their father, its sad to see Vorenus, our hero to fail at this role. His failure gives way for his enemies to manipulate his daughter into betraying leading to double failure for Vorenus. His trip to Egypt while seeming a little contrived is a testament to how far he has come, realising that maybe he is better as solider rather than at any other role he has played. Vorenus’ death was sad but necessary, he wasn’t wanted at his home, only at his death and at least he would be happy with Niobe.

    Pullo- second man?- Pullo comes to the fore a lot more in this season. He continually plays hero, getting Vorenus to rescue his children, destroying Vorenus’ enemies in Rome and dealing with the famine in the Aventine.
    Vorenus also plays second man to Pullo in other ways, as Pullo is the soldier with the wife. His relationship with Eirene is sweet as he truly does love her and seeing his utter despair at losing both Eirene and baby is heartbreaking. I hated that he had a relationship with the manipulative and murderous Gaia and that she almost got a heroes death, but Pullo righted that in the end. He also came to the rescue eventually of Vorenus and Caesarion and out lives his friend taking on all his responsibilities.

    Timon supporting no more- Throughout the first season, Timon was merely a bit character popping up whenever Atia needed him. This season he was given character development, a family and a storyline. The storyline however was a little mysterious; it never seemed to actually get going and was confusing as to what was actually happening. They were seemingly protecting against King Herod but it wasn’t entirely explained why. It wasn’t totally sad then when the storyline was abruptly ended with his brother’s death.

    Octavian: All growed up!- The actor change in the early episodes of the season marks Octavians true maturing to man. The younger Octavian while clearly intelligent did not possess the ruthlessness that Octavian Caesar had. The death of his uncle can be seen as a turning for Octavian to become a man and take the lead of his family. He returns from his time away, cold and almost heartless. He is also ruthless especially in his treatment of Atia and Octavia. His intelligence in the allegiances he makes and the policies and plans he makes shines through as evidence of his maturity. However he still remains some of his youthful traits; his reluctance to actually fight and to an extent in his sexual encounters. Still the maturing of Octavian is an important storyline and acts as a catalyst to many of the events in the season. It was at times a difficult storyline to watch especially at the awkward moments but at times it was wonderful to watch

    Atia4Antony 4eva!!- Atia became much less of a **** in this season. She was mostly ruled by her love for Antony though her spirit for self-preservation is still evident. No longer just sexual partners we see the two make plans, profess their love for one another and make touching gestures. I think it’s actually a very sweet relationship and it’s a shame it had to end so sourly. Atia’s wild jealousy and pining for Antony makes her a much more likeable character.

    Antony: the real next Caesar?- Antony goes through a real transformation in this season. At the beginning of the season he is running scared, later turning into a savage and desperate fighter and later turning into a make-up wearing, drugged up slave of Cleopatra’s (interspersed of course by bouts of being an upright Roman citizen of course!) He is really only motivated by a few things, money, power and sex. Everything he does can be traced back to these three motives. However unfortunately for Antony apart from sex, his desires are usually in the negative and he spends the season struggling to get them. Its fun to see Antony try and get the money and power though to be honest its most fun seeing Antony actually achieve his goals. His cocky demeanour when he does is a lot more fun to watch. It was for this reason that Antony ended up dominating much of the season, it could be argued that he was the next Caesar, in terms of the show anyway! I wasn’t a huge fan of Antony and Cleopatra and their suicides together, as I was more a fan of Atia and Antony but history must dictate.

    Favourite Episodes:

    Passover: The episode does an amazing job of picking up where the last season leaves off. Antony and Atia panic about what lies in their future until Octavian makes a cleaver suggestion that puts Brutus and the other conspirators in a tricky position. Meanwhile Vorenus mourns the death of Niobe and curses his children. The desperation of all these character is what makes the episode so watchable. It is very believable considering what has happened. There are some very funny moments with Antony refusing to get out of bed until he has had sex and some shocking moments with Vorenus finding out that his children were raped and killed before he kills their murderer Erastes Fulmen.

    These Being the Words of Marcus Tullius Cicero: Mark Antony tries to manipulate Cicero but ends up being humiliated on the Senate floor. As Vorenus struggles to control the Aventine and throws it into a gang war Servilia puts her plan for revenge on Atia into motion. Another thrilling episode especially at the end leaving on the cliffhangers for all the main characters especially Atia’s as she is seemingly about to be poisoned. The other cliff-hanger preceded by the wonderful (and almost forgotten) revelation to Vorenus that Pullo knew about Niobe’s infidelity is that Pullo finds out that Vorenus’ children are alive. Although the audience already knows this, it’s exciting for the other characters to actually find out.

    Heroes of the Republic: While Octavian Caesar shocks the Senate with his first Consular act, Octavia enjoys herself in Rome. Vorenus’ children return to Rome but are feeling mutinous. Mark Antony and Octavian reunite to overcome Brutus. Lots of shocks and funny moments in this episode. Octavia supply’s most of the laughs with a decadent and drug fuelled trip to an orgy followed by an even funnier scene when Marcus Agrippa returns her to Atia. Octavian Caesar provides the shocks with the dramatic announcement that Brutus and Cassius are now enemies of Rome. This leads happily leads to Octavian and Mark Antony becoming reunited after much bad blood between them.

    Death Mask: Servilia kills herself but not before cursing Atia to a life of sorrow. Mark Antony then proceeds to clash with Octavian leading to heartbreak for Atia and Marcus Agrippa. Another wonderful episode and although plenty happens concerning Vorenus and his world, it’s the royalty which is a lot more exciting. Servilia’s death is shocking and very powerful. The marriage between Antony and Octavia is not as shocking if you know some history but the whole event is very sad, both Atia and Agrippa play their pain very well.

    A Necessary Fiction: Octavian Caesar’s policy of virtue in Rome and chastisement of his family’s behaviour leaves them resentful and sends Antony to Egypt. Pullo and Vorenus both lose their families but for very different reasons. This is actually an incredibly sad and touching episode injected with a fair amount of violence and hate. Agrippa and Octavia, Atia and Antony are cruelly torn apart and this is very upsetting to watch as they are all visibly affected by this. The two couples obviously love each other so it’s sad to see them split up.
    Pullo losing his baby and Eirene and having to bury them is also incredibly upsetting, as they are another very cute couple. Vorenus finding out his daughter betrayed him is shocking and quite violent. The hurt in his eyes and decision to leave them is another emotional part of this episode. Luckily the fight on the Aventine in the end when Pullo releases all his fury amazing and really lifts the episode.

    Favourite Characters

    Atia: Less vicious this season most of her actions are determined by the desire to keep her and her family safe and for her loved for Mark Antony. Their relationship is quite sweet and its clear that they love each other. Their goodbye in A Necessary Fiction: was so sweet and touching emphasised further by the lack of physical contact in this exchange.

    Mark Antony: A lot more likeable in the second season though he still retains his arrogance. He is brought down a peg by the power politics, a game at which he fails until he becomes entangled with Cleopatra in Egypt.

    Marcus Agrippa: He doesn’t appear much, but I loved his first crush on Octavia and then relationship with her. He was always very gentlemanly even when he had to break up with her. It was a shame they didn’t work but history dictates it so. My favourite scene for him was when he returned Octavia home from the orgy!

    Titus Pullo: His main role this season was to support Vorenus in matter of the business and he did this well. In matters of the heart though, he gets a lot more screen time this season and his relationship with Eirene was so cute. I was so upset when she died leaving him without a family.

    A wonderful, addictive show, which truly made history entertaining. A must see for anyone who loves good TV drama with a bit of comedy and sex thrown in!
  • This show truly is ahead of its time. The production of this show is of such high quality it makes other tv shows of today look like schoolyard plays. BRING IT BACK!!

    10
    Shame on the bureaucrats at HBO for cancelling this show. All it needs is more exposure and I guarantee it will catch up with the best of them.

    The actors are brilliantly played and brilliantly hatched in the drawing boards.
    You have to love the complexity of the tale that is unfolding, and there are so many specific story lines going on simultaneously that it keeps you interested and is never boring.

    Also, the story is never straight forward. It's not ridiculously complex like Lost, but the writers do know exactly where this is going.

    Overall, you will never feel bored watching this show, it will keep you interested, and the quality is just ahead of its time. I have to give it a 10/10.
< 1 2 3 4 5