Spartacus: Blood and Sand

Season 1 Episode 10

Party Favors

Aired Friday 10:00 PM Mar 26, 2010 on Starz
out of 10
User Rating
506 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Numerius is honored with an exhibition match for his birthday celebration at the ludus. Ilithyia gives Numerius a surprising gift, but asks for something in return.

Watch Full Episode

Who was the Episode MVP ?

No results found.
No results found.
No results found.
  • asadd


  • Varro

    I know he had to go be John McClane's son but it was sad
  • Dramatic and intense!

    Wow I was really moved when he had to kill his friend.

    Damn what a good show! Some favor to ask for just a friendly match! The drama was intense with this one, even more than when his wife died.The nice thing about this show is that it's like Rome but with a 300-twist to it.Wow I was really moved when he had to kill his friend.

    Damn what a good show! Some favor to ask for just a friendly match! The drama was intense with this one, even more than when his wife died.The nice thing about this show is that it's like Rome but with a 300-twist to it.moreless
  • *** Spoiler-free *** Dream writing team, intense and wicked story, irresistible characters and top notch acting, appealing recurring elements and extreme emotions

    Pairing writers seems to be one of the successful strategies behind the show. Indeed Tracy Bellomo and Andrew Chambliss did an overwhelming job on Delicate Things but we could also mention episodes like Great and Unfortunate Things. And when you have Steven S. DeKnight as head writer it can only lead to masterful episodes like Party Favors. This time Brent Fletcher teamed up with Miranda Kwok. My opinion about her work on Shadow Games was mixed even if it was a puzzling and emotional installment. When it comes to the show I consider rating an episode below 7 out of 10 would be inappropriate because its foundation is just too strong. With such a dream team the story could only be twisted, unpredictable and smart. As for the execution it was flawless and the new director did an excellent job. IM not the supervisor on Spartacus but if I was I would be damn proud of my achievements. So instead of nosebleeding like a genius turtle let's enumerate the elements that make Party Favors stands right beside Delicate Things.

    First Katrina Law was back as Mira, the ludus new female slave. She has the beauty of an Amazon and could be what they never allowed Sura to be, the water drop that could even purify a pool of tainted blood. It leads us to Andy Whitfield who plays Spartacus, formerly known as the Thracian. All our thoughts are with him considering his health condition and the only thing I'm sure is that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. They say acting helps becoming who you are and that portraying fictional characters make you unleash the different personalities within you. I believe Mr Whitfield is both a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Such a strange and inspiring man can only beat the Grim Reaper and transform its bones into sand. In my The Red Serpent review I wrote that in Spartacus blood was associated to death so in real life it would be logical if life was Whitfield's companion. In the show it's Varro's role and this episode focused on their growing friendship. Both actors delivered strong performances but the whole cast also did a great job. John Hannah doesn't play Batiatus, he is Batiatus. Viva Bianca was also exquisite as the wicked Ilythia.

    As for the other elements I enjoyed they're quite numerous. First the editing was more creative than in Delicate Things even if it wasn't as inspiring as in the pilot. Second the beginning was nothing like in Mark of the Brotherhood as a brutal and entertaining fight in the arena is featured. Remember Shadow Games bloody ending ? Well in my opinion it was better. Third the boomerang arcs mentionned in my previous reviews kept their sharp-edged dance around the characters and some moments were quite intense. Fourth the Crixus versus Spartacus battle developed further and you'll have to watch the episode to know if they finally collided or if the writers continued to tease us like if these half-naked men were strippers or go go dancers, because I hope women also read me. And when it comes to foreplay there's nothing better than a good old game of checkers. Yes because the fifth element I really appreciated was the use of a Roman board game, that also reminded me of othello and go because of its black and white pieces, to teach us a few things about strategy. One face-off was particularly unexpected and brought even more tension between some characters. How can you fall asleep as a ludus resident when you are surrounded by enemies ? Moreover the game wasn't only featured for a few split seconds like in Lost or Caprica, it was part of the story and I could spend hours to match the characters with chess pieces.

    Last but not least life would be boring without emotions. It also applies to olympic entertainment and the diversity of what I felt was just mind blowing. My eyes popped out from their orbit for an astral home run I could never get tired to experience. My arms wanted to support the wounded or betrayed, and my hands to randomly spank a few guest hands and shake… My point is that I also laughed a lot. You can't resist Varro's jokes and Crixus tiger eyes. As for the ending it was brilliantly set up and I really didn't see it coming. In The Matrix they bended a spoon but here they just melted it. As for the blood it was pouring like wine at a Dionysos orgy.moreless
  • Jupiter's c**k!!

    As the Romans say: Jupiter's c**k!! What the writers did in the latest episode was unbelievable and you know what did happen to Spartacus' wife, don't you?

    Kudos to the writers. I did not see the end of this episode coming. They are bravely sticking to their statement: "No one is save!" Ilithyia is becoming more and more dangerous and crazy. I really like how this character is evolving from a spoiled brat to a great villain. The scene in the baths with Numerius was very tempting and well done. Who could resist Ilithyia? Obviously Numerius couldn't.

    It was heartbreaking when Numerius wanted Varro killed and Batiatus allowed it. So after reuniting with his dead wife, Spartacus now have to kill his best friend in the ludus. They both were so great together. Especially in this episode when they were fighting, making fun of each other and grinning. It was quite entertaining. What can Spartacus lose next? Maybe his love interest who I'm starting to like?

    The beginning of the episode was good and had some nice scenes, like Batiatus and Spartacus playing together. Crixus and Naevia are getting careless. Instead of having quickies they are now having sex next to the stairs, so everyone can spot them instantly. Hopefully we will see an enraged Lucretia!
Tania Nolan

Tania Nolan


Guest Star

Tim Foley

Tim Foley


Guest Star

John Bach

John Bach

Magistrate Calavius

Guest Star

Lesley-Ann Brandt

Lesley-Ann Brandt


Recurring Role

Ande Cunningham

Ande Cunningham


Recurring Role

Craig Walsh Wrightson

Craig Walsh Wrightson


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Spartacus: It is a distance to travel: from a woman's mouth to a man's ears.

    • Varro: Aurelia tells me Sicilia is an island blessed by the Gods. You must visit us there when you gain freedom.
      : I no longer concern myself with thoughts beyond these walls.
      : And nor should you. A true champion dreams only of the arena.
      : And what does one dream of when he's no longer a champion?
      Crixus: Regaining the title from the thief who stole it from me.

    • Mira: Gratitude for last night.
      Spartacus: The man overstepped. I merely made correction.
      Mira: Still... the heart swells at such kindness.
      Spartacus: Then see it deflate. I would have done the same for any woman.
      Mira: You are an ass.

    • Varro: Well... the champion of Capua. Always making friends.
      Spartacus: I need but one.
      Varro: Fortunate, since it appears one is all you have.

    • Varro: There is no choice.
      Spartacus: There is always a choice.

  • NOTES (1)

    • Original International Air Dates:
      United Kingdom: July 27, 2010 on Bravo.
      Czech Republic: August 3, 2010 on HBO.
      Slovakia: August 14, 2011 on Markiza.


  • 10:00 pm