SPARTACUS: GODS OF THE ARENA “Past Transgressions” Review

SPARTACUS: GODS OF THE ARENA "Past Transgressions" Season 1 Episode 1 – The STARZ prequel to SPARTACUS: BLOOD AND SAND doesn’t pick up where the original series left off. Rather, it gives a more fully-formed backstory to the sweat-and-sand saga as only STARZ can: with copious amounts of spurting blood, naked skin, and a joyous sense of eye-popping mayhem. Notably absent is the star of the first season of Spartacus, Andy Whitfield, who’s off fighting that cancer thing again (his replacement—Liam McIntyre—was just recently announced for the next season). But also absent, or at least muted, are some of the more comic-booky visuals that made the original either ridiculous or psychotic fun, depending upon who you ask.

"Gratuitous gratuity" is the only way I can describe last year’s Spartacus. Most of the people I’ve talked to agree with me: Spartacus: Blood and Sand started weak, but it had a strong and… actually quite startling ending. With Spartacus: Gods of the Arena, it’s obvious a little more thought has gone into it—most notably how the scenes were framed, shot, and edited. A little more money probably went into it as well.

My first chuckle of the night had to go to the parental warning that popped up, denoting the show as "A HISTORICAL PORTRAYAL OF ANCIENT ROMAN SOCIETY." Now … while I’m not fully versed in the lives and times of the people of first century B.C. Italy, I think it’s fair to say silicone did not play a prominent role, least of all stuffed inside the breasts of their women. And while Gods of the Arena has a much smaller degree of plastic than Blood and Sand had, it’s still there. But hey, I get it; if you throw a handful of silver coins at any number of naked model/actresses, eventually one is going to bounce straight back into your face. It’s like the old saying, when you swing a cat by the… long tail in a room full of… rocking… chairs… Read More...


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