BLOOD AND VENGEANCE OF THE GODS OF THE DAMNED

... Syfy, home of lost girls, warehouses full of mysterious artifacts, and most importantly, the legendary weather phenomena known as sharknados, will soon welcome mostly naked dudes and their swinging swords (not a euphemism—maybe). The network has acquired the basic cable rights to Starz's hit series Spartacus, which aired on the pay cable network from 2010 to 2013. Syfy will air all 39 episodes of the swords-and-sandals epic, starting Thursday, June 26 at 10pm, following the Season 2 premiers of Defiance and the series premiere of Dominion. I'd guess that each episode will last 10 minutes once all the nudity is edited out. Or maybe Syfy will go the blurry nether regions/black bars route, which seems about as fun as watching scrambled porn in the '90s. One has to wonder how well Spartacus will do on Syfy, since I'm pretty sure the nudity was at least 75 percent of the reason anyone watched the show in the first place. (I'm just kidding. Please stop throwing rocks at me. And keep that sword where I can see it.) [Syfy via press release]


BUSINESS TIME

... The female-skewing cable networks held their weekly book club earlier this week, and I can only imagine that one of the perky Type As mentioned an article about supernatural shows and movies being the cool new thing, because only days after Lifetime announced that it's making a sequel to The Omen, WEtv has ordered eight episodes of the scripted series South of Hell, a supernatural thriller about a demon hunter named Maria Abascal. The premiere will be directed by Eli Roth (HostelHemlock Grove). Your move, Hallmark. [WEtv via press release]

... In a shocking turn of events, the Survivor finale was bested on Wednesday by the American Idol finale. Approximately 10.2 million viewers tuned in to find out which singer would go on to not be all that famous, while only 9.5 million people cared to find out whether it was brawn, beauty, or brains that pocketed a million bucks after spending a few weeks on an island. Idol only barely won the 18-to-49 demo, though, earning a 2.6 rating that just edged out Survivor's 2.5. Meanwhile, Modern Family's wedding-centric finale bested both reality series, pulling in 10.23 million viewers and a 3.6 rating. [THR]

... TBS has ordered additional episodes of Deal With It, a hidden-camera reality competition series that features regular Joe the Plumbers playing pranks on their friends with "absolutely no time to prepare" (translation: enough time to sign the contracts that allow them to appear on the show). They have to do everything they're instructed to do via earpiece, and they work their way up a cash and prizes ladder. It's basically like when Ellen makes celebrities do hilariously dumb stuff on her show, but without Ellen, and who wants that? [TBS via press release]

... Thanks to Entertainment Weekly, we finally have a trailer for the second season of SundanceTV's critically acclaimed drama Rectify. Just a reminder, the first season is only six episodes long and is available on Netflix, which means there's plenty of time to catch up before the June 19 premiere. [EW]


... FX's newest 10/90 comedy Partners will premiere on Monday, August 4 at 9pm, airing back-to-back episodes five consecutive weeks. The series stars Kelsey Grammer and Martin Lawrence as two lawyers from different backgrounds who meet in court during their own personal crises and decide to form a partnership. If you're not familiar with the 10/90 set-up, it's when a network orders an initial run of 10 episodes, and then if those 10 episodes reach a certain ratings threshold, the network orders an additional 90 episodes. And now you know where babies come from why Anger Management exists. [FX via press release]

... Coming to Lifetime in 2015: a new movie based on the life of Whitney Houston and her tumultuous relationship with Bobby Brown. Angela Bassett is set to direct the project, which is currently titled Whitney Houston because the network used up all its creative juice when it decided to move forward with that sequel to The Omen. [THR]



CASTING NEWS

... Well, that was fast. Mark Pellegrino (Supernatural, Being HumanLost) has already lined up his first post-Tomorrow People gig, as a lead in A&E's upcoming American adaptation of The Returned. He'll play Jack, the father of two girls, which means he's not playing one of the people who return from the dead. He is, however, reuniting with Returned adapter Carlton Cuse, who he worked with on Lost. [TV Line]

... HOLY SH*T STOP EVERYTHING. Guest-star extraordinaire Željko Ivanek (SuitsRevolutionDamagesThe Americans, all the shows) now has a full-time series regular gig on CBS's new drama Madam Secretary. He guest-starred in the pilot as Russell Jackson, the president's chief of staff, and apparently he'll be sticking around for awhile. Good for you, Željko. Let's all send him some nice wine to celebrate, okay? [Deadline]

... Neil Jackson, who guest-starred in Sleepy Hollow's first season as Abraham "Bram" Von Brunt a.k.a. the Headless Horseman before he lost his head, will reprise the role in the madcap drama's second season. In fact, you can expect to see a lot of him when Ichabod and Abbie and the rest of the Sleepy Hollow crew return in the fall, as his role is said to be "heavily" recurring. Wheeeeeee, is it September yet? [Deadline]


REQUIRED READING

... Calling all Parks and Recreation fans! EW talked to Parks and Recreation executive producer Michael Schur about Season 7, the road to Season 7, possible spin-off ideas, and much, much more. Hit the link to read the interview. [EW]


RECENT STORIES YOU MAY HAVE MISSED ON TV.COM

... The Great Summer TV Cram is here! Check out the eight sophomore shows you should catch up before they return for Season 2.

... Tim braved the Revolution finale so you didn't have to.

... On this week's episode of The 100, Murphy returned and accidentally infected most of the camp with a virus that caused bleeding from nearly every orifice. Also, a bridge blew up.

... Did you watch The Americans' Season 2 finale? It was SO GOOD.


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 4/16/2010

Season 1 : Episode 13

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Željko Ivanek is very good, but he's been showing up in so many places that I'm kind of getting sick of him. It sounds like a good idea to keep him in one place.
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is the Returned like Resurrection?????
And Whitney Huston-who needs this-except to show us how drug addiction, being a DIVA, and loving beaters is cool???

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Željko Ivanek had a brief stint on Banshee also, but he was brilliant as always! But I'm still not watching that new show LOL.
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So guys see boobs but girls dont see dongs. Typical sexism on tv.
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Spartacus! A great show.
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WHAT NO DONGS!!!!!!!!!sorry still laughing.....

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I can't figure out what FX's sinister plan is with the 10/90 deals. Every single one of them produced or announced so far is the bottom of the barrel of their otherwise generally excellent programming. They also give employment to many who should no longer be part of the entertainment industry. First Sheen, then Lopez and now Lawrence? Ugh.

Maybe the $$$ from syndication is their ultimate goal, though I'm not sure who'd want to air them. Padding fodder for FXX? Dunno, but those shows sure are stinkin' up the joint.

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Hooray for Željko Ivanek!!! I think he is one of the top actors in tv series and he uplifts every one of them with his presence.BTW, he also has one hell of an agent.
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Wait, so Starz was doing a Sixteen Candles/Spartacus crossover? And SyFy is going to leave out one of the funnier characters?



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Jupiter's cock!
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"...And keep that sword where I can see it" Ooh, Matron!
Didn't they swear a fair bit in Spartacus too? And as such are they going to be hiring Sam Jackson to do some of his infamous melon farmer edits?!
Rectify, Yay! Parks and rec', Yay!
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Staff

Sure there is a lot of nudity. Game of Thrones has way more.
I imagine that if Spartacus were to have aired on HBO rather than on STARZ that a lot more people would given it a chance.
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I've seen more sex and nudity in the first 3 episodes of this series than all 4 seasons of Game of Thrones.
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I haven't done a boob count or anything, but I would say that there's a lot more nudity in Spartacus than in GoT.
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There even were a lot more dead people on Spartacus (or is that a turn off?). To be hionest, the nude people on Spartacus were pretty too.
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They're honestly going to have to edit the shit out of it, they're going to have to do the blur route because there are scene integral to the overall plot of the show that have some pretty in your face nudity, it doesn't just take a break for some screwing every so often, characters have meaningful discussions while simultaneously either shaving themselves with heir dicks out, washing themselves with their dicks or boobs out, having sex with a slave, or while an orgy going on in the background. I can't see it airing anywhere where they can't show full frontal nudity.
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Rectify is going to kick so much ass!!!!It looks like it might be going to up the first season.Also,looking forward to the who killed,the girl Daniel was accused of.That shady ass guy who got rid of that body at the end of season 1 is pretty safe bet lol.Can't friggin wait!
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Remember when they ran Dexter on network tv for a short time? I do and I remember talking to some friends about Dexter and the mouth on Debb, and the friend said she had never heard her curse. I looked at her like she was crazy and then remembered she had only watched Dexter on NBC(I think nbc) . I did laugh tho. I figure Spartacus will be kinda like that.
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Mark Pellegrino AND Neil Jackson in the same News Briefs? I'm an extremely happy fangirl right now.
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What the heck is SyFy going to do to the show that was not perfected previously? Spartacus was AMAZING, and I can't see how a remake of it will do anything but turn audiences back to Starz's version. In fact, I'm going to go rewatch the finale right now!
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I tried watching Spartacus several times, couldn't get pass the first few episodes. Can you tell me if it gets any better.
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It got MUCH better. I too wasn't sure I'd continue after the first episode, but it got interesting once Batiatus and Ashur started their scheming, and turned into pure awesomeness at the end. I think I experienced my first nerdgasm in the season finale.
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I don't think I've ever watched a show where in one 13 episode season my emotions went from hopeful to hate watching to gradually liking it then thinking it was the best show on TV followed by a finale that was perhaps the best thing I've ever seen. That ending ... so perfect.

I just don't know how they are going to do it without nudity. It seemed to me someone was naked in just about every scene and quite a few important conversations happened during sex.
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I guess it depends if you get offended by the gratuitous nudity and violence, but yes, it became very, very good. The finale was outstanding.
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I agree with smith. Also if you go on Spartacus boards or just anyone who's a fan of the show, 99% of those people will tell you to skip the pilot.
When I first watched the show and saw the pilot, I just went all WTF and thinking how far Sam Raimi had fallen to go from Spider-Man 1-3 to Spartacus, but I gave it chance it just turned into an exceptional show.

I once introduced the show to a friend of mine and told him to start from Ep 2, but naturally he didn't listen to me and decided to watch the Pilot and then it took me about 6 months for him to cave in and then we watched Ep 2-5 together.
That led him to admit that it was interesting enough to watch, just had to give it a few eps to get into gear.
When he then reached the episodes leading up to the finale, he told me how epic he thought the show was.

He had a few issues with getting into S2 as a result of all the changes.
He loved s3 though. Watched the entire thing in one go.
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"...how far Sam Raimi had fallen to go from Spider-Man 1-3 to Spartacus"

Your other points are fine, but Spider-Man 3 was far worse than the weak Spartacus pilot.
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That finale!
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I don't think they're remaking it , they're just airing the existing series
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No dongs, no sale! Seriously though Spartacus was one of my favorites from the past few years of shows but I honestly never imagined it would be aired on any other network. It would be such a better fit with Netflix (again) or Amazon since they wouldn't have to bother with shortening episodes and censoring it. It's not that the moments (many many moments) of nudity, sex and gore are absolutely necessary to tell the story but the over-the-top stylized violence is part of its charm in a weird way.
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Still patiently waiting on the casting news that matters: Luke Mitchell is going to The Originals.
Come on!
Also, I hate remakes, but Mark Pellegrino makes me want to watch The Returned remake. But only a little.
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Honestly he deserves better than TO imo.

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Yeah, he does, but I want the H2O reunion!
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"And keep that sword where I can see it." - Really? And so close after mentioning other "sword" euphemisms? But seriously, once you take away all the nudity, and possibly some of the more graphic and FREQUENT decapitations from Spartacus, I'm really not sure you'd even have 10 full minutes of footage without counting the opening recaps and their long closing credits.
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when SciFi rebranded themselves as Syfy I thought ok, fine, they just want a new spelling.. but they're getting too far from scifi stuff, Spartacus may have been historical fiction but that's not the same not to mention how horribly watered down this is going to be. people who wanted to watch it probably have pirated it by now, and wouldn't want to watch this version even if they hadn't. and for the record, shows like Haven and Warehouse 13 and upcoming Dominion are FANTASY, not scifi. remember shows like BSG, Eureka, and Alphas? those were scifi.

Mark Pellegrino is just playing an ordinary run of the mill and non-evil human? holy crap!

I have hated every character I've seen Zeljko Ivanek play, so good for him but I wasn't planning to watch that show even before I heard about this.

that EW article mentions P&R will only have 13 episodes? UGH! It should've been a full season even if it's airing midseason. CURSE YOU, NBC!
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Siffy is not the home of any warehouses full of mysterious artifacts anymore, nor of any real sci-fi at all, fuck them in their stupid faces.

That should be "Type A's", not "As". Guess which type I am. Let's just say The Fonz would get it, eyh! Also, South of Hell is a terrible TV title.

Glad to see scripted tv beat 2 aging reality contest shows.

I honestly don't know who watches anything on TBS, but bless them for trying.

So the 10/90 on Partners will also be the split of the talent? These FX 10/90 deals are becoming a better retirement home for aging actors than TV Land.
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I highly recommend Spartacus, but not on the fucking SyFy channel. That's going to be so brutal.
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Yea I don't see that working. "Sock in Bum" just doesn't have the same ring to it.
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Literally no idea how Spartacus will air on Syfy in any shape or form like the original. Half the language in the show is "shit", "cock", and "ass", often in the same sentence. Lucy Lawless' tits show up every 10 minutes, and we catch more than a few glimpses of Manu Bennett's "sword". This is going to be laughable at best.
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I had the biggest laugh that I have had in a long while when I read that Spartacus was going to be shown on Syfy. Spartacus is a adult themed show with nudity, blood, guts and some language. By the time they cut it to pieces because of that, it wont be worth watching. I read some crazy shit, but this took the cake. And NOOOOOOO Spartacus is not Syfy...and does not belong on the Syfy channel.....laughing again....that was a hoot....
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I loved the first season of Spartacus it was brilliant but it is not Syfy at all in any sence of the word.
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Why haven't you watched the rest of the series then?? Nudity, decapitation and frequent cock-in-ass references await!
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I've seen the whole of season 1 and about 3 episodes of season 2 and that's it. I found I could watch everything I love in the time I had, so some shows had to give.
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Watch Gods of the Arena before you get far into season 2 if you havent already, it'll make things a whole lot clearer for some characters.
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Oh man, Partners doesn't sound that horrible, with those two. And Eli Roth didn't direct Saw, but pretty much it doesn't matter. There is nothing sci fi about Spartacus.
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What about Spartacus makes it a sci-fi show? On the plus side, the word, "shit", can now be said on cable, so add 1 minute to the 10-minute time.

Partners was better with the working title of Braddock & Jackson. Partners sounds so plain vanilla and forgettable.

Nice to see Ivanek get steady work on one show. Though I like him, I hated seeing him on three or more shows at once.
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Thumbs up for pointing out how shitty "Partners" as a title sounds. "But they're also legal partners!" - screw you, suit! It's lazy and plain and forgettable and sounds like a bad Friends ripoff.
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It also could be anything - Lawyers, Cops, Business Men, Cowboys... Maybe they did not want it confused with Franklin and Bash?
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I dunno, I think they didn't want people to think it was yet another hour-long legal drama. Then again, there are a lot of ampersand shows lately:
Franklin & Bash
Rizzoli & Isles
King & Maxwell *
Law & Order
Key & Peele
Melissa & Joey
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But what about "cock", because Battiatus absolutely loves to remind everyone just how much Jupiter loves to ram it everywhere.
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They only refer to Jupiter's cock like once or twice an episode, I have no idea what you're talking about.
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I remember when CBS aired the first season of Dexter during the writer's strike and edited out all of Deb and Doakes' swearing and the occasional sex scene. It was pitiful. Thank god they didn't air season two (aka Fucking: The TV series)...
When will Americans realize censorship solves nothing? Over here we have swearing and full frontal nudity on public television and nobody gives a shit.
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Believe it or not, there were plans to re-air Deadwood on network TV. I remember Robin Weigert (Calamity Jane) talking about looping new audio for what was quite possibly the most profane show ever. She thought it was hilariously ridiculous to even try modifying it for free TV.

To my knowledge, the plan never came to fruition. Thank the gods.

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I've only seen Dexter via the CBS airings, and I thought it held up quite well, it was compelling and I would have watched season 2 that way. Then again, I didn't seek it out when it hit Netflix, but I heard later seasons doomed the series.
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Jennifer "Deb" Carpenter's constant barrage of profanity was a hallmark of her performance. It wouldn't be anywhere near the same without that element of her character.
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I can only tell you what I saw, not what I didn't.
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I can dig that.

If I were asked to compile a list of TV characters who would seem most different in censored and uncensored forms, she would easily be in the top three. (About half the cast of Deadwood would also be way up there, but I digress.) I mean you really have to hear it for yourself to appreciate just how often she used heavy duty cursing, not your run-of-the-mill stuff.

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Only seasons six and eight are bad, the rest is awesome. Seasons seven, four and two are my personal top three.
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So SyFy must have missed the part when A&E started airing Sopranos eps after its run on cable...and ratings were decidedly mehh...
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10 minutes per episode of Spartacus sounds about right. Nudity, language, adult situations... it was bloody brilliant (from episode 3 on).

I'm confused about the remake of the Returned, isn't Resurrected based on the Returned? Also screw* all these remakes that come out 5 mins after the original (I'm looking at you Gracepoint), are we really out of original programming ideas already?



*I will however, watch the remake of Utopia, because I'll watch anything Fincher touches.
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I'll watch the remake of Utopia as well, but it's gonna be damn hard for HBO and Fincher to top the original. Nevertheless can't wait for it (and the 2nd season of the original). HBO's excellent drama series give me high hopes, if it were given to any other channel I think it'd be doomed to fail.
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I'll give Gracepoint a chance mostly out of love for Tennant, but it doesn't help that I thought Broadchurch was a decent, if not incredibly overhyped series drug out a little too far.

Will definitely give Utopia US a chance though. Given the recent surges in comic (fuck you whoever keeps trying to sell them as "graphic novels", they're comic books!) fans and the growing fear and distrust of the government and healthcare reform, this is a perfect time for a series like Utopia to get a real budget behind it and much broader audience to follow it. I loved the original series, but consider how much I also love Americanized remakes Shameless and Being Human, I'm a lot more willing to give this a chance than I was The Office and The Inbetweeners, etc.
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I was finally convinced to watch the american version of Shameless, and as much as I adore the original, I was surprised by how much I liked it. I'm only part way through the first season, so it's still a bit of a rehash (I did hear that it kind of goes it's own way after season 1), but it actually still feels fresh and funny. This is a remake I can get behind.

Being Human on the other hand didn't work for me at all. I really tried to give it a chance, but I just couldn't connect with any of the characters. I really really disliked the remake.

I'd have been pissed about Utopia if it wasn't Fincher making it. I know he'll be able to get the tone, visuals and violence right. His work on House of Cards is pretty brilliant.

And I completely know what you mean about Broadchurch, when they revealed the killer, I was like "what the f*ck was that?" All these side stories and plots that lead nowhere and were for nothing. Great performances, but ultimately a hollow show.
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I think for me, it was because going into Being Human US, I fully expected to absolutely hate it, and no other possibility had crossed my mind. To my surprise, I actually really enjoyed it. I think a large part of that was liking and connecting with Josh's character, likely because I generally hated Russell from the UK series. Aiden was absolutely no comparison to Mitchell at all, and Sally, was well.. just about as uninteresting as Annie. Nora was a bit more likeable than Nina as well. Sadly, the UK version turned into an absolute abomination shortly thereafter with its cast shakeup and such...
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"Sadly, the UK version turned into an absolute abomination shortly thereafter with its cast shakeup and such..."

Agreed.
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Well yes Kaitlin, I watched Spartacus at the beginning mostly for the nudity! The violence not that much... I would just look the other way! But it is much more than that... otherwise I would've just watched regular porn... ;-P
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Putting Spartacus on Basic Cable is absolutely dumb. Here's a perfect example, "Finally the gods have seen it fit to remove cock from ass".
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"You appear as honorable man yet attempt to slip cock in ass" It will not only be 90% blurred but 90% muted.
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*throws a rock at Kaitlin* I liked the creative heading for the Spartacus entry.

One cannot edit Spartacus! What a blasphemy this mere thought is. May the wrath of Crixus forever hang over SyFy execs.

But if anyone here still hasn't seen Spartacus, you absolutely should. Just not on SyFy if they are really going for a poor man's version. This was a superb show that smartly elevated itself beyond the basic violence/nudity, just as this Game of Thrones phenomena usually manages to do. Based on its premise alone, you wouldn't have guessed what it could amount to.
Spartacus had a soul, be in the form of Andy Whitfield or Liam McIntyre. And many times over it had me captivated in such a way that made me rank it over GoT.
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Doesn't everybody know by now that airing premium cable shows on basic cable channels never works?
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It works if it gets people to go out and buy the DVD sets or stream the actual series unedited, but yeah, that's about it really.
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