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January 18 2010

Sex and Gore? Thatís Ancient History. Whedon vet Steve DeKnight is head writer of 13-part series "Spartacus: Blood and Sand."

Since seeing the trailer at Comic Con, I've been very interested in this series. Rob Taperts work is hit and miss with me, but I have faith that DeKnight will do the story justice. And being cable TV, means he has a lot of latitude with how the story is portrayed. If it's even half as good as Rome, it'll be fantastic.
I saw the preview also, but the violence was so disturbing I had to switch channels. I like Steve De Knight, just can't take excessive blood and gore.
As the article says, the violence is often very stylised, with so much blood that it's plainly not real. It's still fairly gory though as you'd imagine from the edged weapon era (fair bit of nudity too if that's the sort of thing that bothers you).

Quite liked it and must admit I found the fights to be well arranged and generally pretty exciting (a lot of the sex seemed to be there just to say "Hey, they had a lot of sex back then. Plus, aren't our cast pretty ?" but a) I guess that's partly a function of not knowing the characters that well yet and b) yes, they most certainly are). Strangely though, whereas with a lot of shows it's the other way around, with 'Spartacus: Blood and Sand' I can see the arc (since history has written the broad strokes already) but I wonder about how they'll sustain the week to week story elements. I mean, how many times can he win in the arena before we feel like they've kinda done that ?
It wasn't the same Spartacus from Charlton Helston's movie, and the style was a litle more in the line with 300, but I'm already bored, seing only 2 episodes.
. If it's even half as good as Rome, it'll be fantastic.


I tried watched Rome but when I heard the line "alirght Brutus my old cock" during the first episode, something inside of me died. And I never watched it since.
There're contemporary swear words in this one (ALL of them BTW, for those unfond of the 'c' word) particularly when the soldiers/gladiators are talking among themselves but the dialect is slightly removed from contemporary colloquial English. 'Cock' makes an appearance more than once though (the word I mean since IIRC the show adheres to the usual double standard that you can show all the "hoo-hoos" you want but a single "pee-pee" would end civilisation as we know it).

It wasn't the same Spartacus from Charlton Helston's movie, and the style was a litle more in the line with 300, but I'm already bored, seing only 2 episodes.

Charlton Heston was in 'Ben Hur' (Kirk Douglas - and a cast of thousands ;) - played 'Spartacus'). Same historical figure BTW, if that's what you mean Brasilian Chaos Man (but a very different feel, if that's what you mean. As you'd expect from a cable TV series made 50 years later).
I recently got an invitation from Landmark Theatres/Starz to attend a screening, but I had already found it online and watched it. I don't think it's an experience I want to repeat, though I debate that thought back and forth, because of who's involved in the production of it.

This show is an incredibly violent bloodbath that coats the screen in slo-mo gushes and spurts of blood, close-ups of severed neck tendons, which I found rather obscene, and me a horror fan (but not all horror, and not even always stylized horror). I know a lot of folks didn't connect with Rome, but I did. What I felt the show lacked is Rome's winky-eye and humor (for instance, Marc Antony's decline into drugged-out, kohl eyeliner wearing) to alleviate the violence, and relationships to hold on to. Although the lead, Manu Bennett is hot and a more than worthy successor to gladiator stardom, not sure at all even he can hold on to me to endure more of the endless gushing blood.
I could see how "Rome" may not be everybody's cup of brandy, but I thought it was as fascinating as television could be. Yes, they played with history, especially with Octavian, but I agree that the humor was really well done. "Octavian, sweetheart, here's your Greek philosopher" Thwap! "Thank you, Domina." Truly hilarious.
Brasilian Chaos Man :that w as Kirk Douglas, not Charlton Heston
The gushing blood aspects make it sound unappealing to me, even if it's stylized. Regarding the swearing though, I'm just in the midst of watching "Deadwood" now, and it's hard to imagine any language seeming shocking after that.
Well, there's more of it barboo (not in variety, quantity). And it's not "dressed up" in beautiful almost-Shakespearean almost-soliloquies, it's often just soldiers/gladiators shooting the shit, like squaddies since, well, at least Roman times apparently. That said, not particularly shocking to any adult IMO - it's swearing basically, people saying naughty words, how shocking can it really be ?

Brasilian Chaos Man :that w as Kirk Douglas, not Charlton Heston

Humf, what am I, chopped liver ? ;)
Bring on the blood, bring on the sex, bring on the bad language. Very little can shock me (I work for a huge multi-national capitalistic corporation in finance) and I am looking forward to them trying. :)
I agree with Benisglory. Any show that would be even half as good as Rome would be a special treat. I thought Rome was spectacular and have watched the entire series at least three times. Being a fan of "The 300", I am looking forward to the slo-mo effects, which were both hypnotic and beautiful.
Right on, TamaraC - Bring it on ! My DVR is already set to record the show and I can't wait! Vale, Imperator Steven De Knight & company. De-Light me with your show!
Humf, what am I, chopped liver ?

No, you're quail eggs... =)
Heh, ta Tonya, I can live with that (despite surely being too indelicate to be an actual delicacy - except possibly in Colombia where, Wikipedia tells me, they come on hot-dogs ;).
Hot Dogs?? {{blinks}} Inconceivable!

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