I thought we got off to a great start. I love the way the show gets up to big moments (like Mark Anthony's speech) and doesn't hit us with what we've seen before and instead goes straight to the aftermath.
Geez, though, the bit with Pullo wiping out the bar.. goodness was that gory.
The one big criticism of this episode that I have seen so far is that we do not see Caesar's funeral until the body burning.
I have no problem with it and love the description of it given by Erastes' man because it was great to see how the commoners reacted...especially seeing as how offended Erastes was over indignities.
I loved some of the camera angles that gave new views of the sets making them feel transformed from the first season.
I am also glad to see James Purefoy now getting more screen time, he constantly entertains me as Antony.
The one thing they have not been able to do though is make the forum seem bigger than the set...it just seems too small and cramped and not as gloriously large as it was in real life. I felt like Caesar's body was being burned in some built up province and not the Forum of Rome.
Although there was alot to enjoy in the first season, I found it disappointing. With this season going from 12 episodes to 10 and with no hope of seeing how things turn out since the show is cancelled, I wondered if I should even bother.
Having said that, I thought it was pretty damn good. One of the better episodes of the show.
Well I will be very surprised if they don't finish the loose ends this season. We all know whats going to happen, it's just a matter of the sub plots they interweave. I for one am very excited because I know what is going to happen and this episode is a calm before the storm.
The episode was very good in my opinion. Mark Antony is going to be one of the leading men this season and his performance was great. Although Octavian is going to have to grow a pair shortly if we are to believe him capable of what he does in the future.
There was a show that ran on the History channel a couple of months ago that was also about the history of Rome but over a couple of emperors, Nero, Ceaser and Constantine. Did anyone get a chance to see that and how does it compare to HBO's Rome?
Interesting comment given that it's all based on History. If you want to know more than what HBO chooses to show, you will be able to choose from plenty of sources to get more information. The story had to end at some/i] point. Even if it ended last year, I'd have walked away the better. This season is all bonus, IMO.
After watching Rome last season, I watched a lot of other things dealing with the topic. There are some on DVD. You might want to as well if you haven't had your fill by the end of the run.
It will end at the beginning of the Pax Romana, unless they want to set it up for another season.
Watching the episode again just now I remembered the things I loved from the first season. Pullo is always hilarious and the way they handled the relationship between him and Vorenus was one of the first I have seen that is done as well as it is.
When Pullo was trying to convince his slave to marry him, the comment about "killing your man and all" had me in stitches. Just because I remembered how brutal it was
Caesar is often counted as the First Emperor, even though the did not formally inaugurate permanent one man rule or a stable succession as Octavian did. Caesar was the first Roman permanently granted the title of "imperator". Previously this was a title conferred by a victorious general's troops after a battle. Being hailed as "imperator" was a necessary preliminary to being voted a triumph (if the victory were over a foreign enemy) or the lesser honor of an ovation (if over a servile foe, such as Spartacus.) But it was never an everyday title until Caesar's time, and the same honor was later voted Octavian when he was Augustus, and gives us our word "emperor". But the emergence of that as a title was gradual. Augustus styled himself "princeps", first citizen, from princeps senatus the leader of the House, and his form of government was called the principate (source of our word "prince") before it was called "empire".
(What is sometimes confusing is that Rome had acquired an Empire long before it acquired an Emperor, and words long associated with command and authority like princeps senatus, imperium and imperator under the Republic were refashioned to fit the new political reality as it gradually emerged under the first few princeps. Augustus went to great lengths to disguise the nature of his reign and to restore the forms and external symbols of the Republic.)
Generally speaking I thought the episode was a good drama. Antony is fun to watch, and from some angles puts me in mind of the young Brando in the role. Minor nitpicks: Apart from the absuridty of the falling out with Servillia and her part in the assassination plot, for which there isn't a scrap of evidence anywhere, I don't much like the portrayal of Cicero, who wasn't nearly the cliche they present him as. (Whenever he opens his mouth I think of Dr. Smith from Lost in Space or FitzHugh from Land of the Giants.
) And the less said about public cryer, the better.
Also thought it odd (and pointless) to have Calpurnia depicted as living in the Suburba, where Caesar grew up. He was still Pontifex Maximus when he died (it was an office held for life) and therefore he lived in the Domus Publicus adjacent to the Temple of Vesta. (Which is also where his will would have been kept on file by the Vestal Virgins.)
The Forum in Caesar's time looked nothing like the ruins one sees in Rome today. The current Forum reflects the much-enlarged Forum of Augustus's time, and of course appears much more open than it would have in ancient times when the buildings surrounding it were still intact. I'm not so sure how far off the depiction in the series is.