Recaps for The Borgias

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'The Borgias' Season 3 Premiere Recap: Will the Borgias Survive?

The Borgias returns from quite the cliffhanger: Pope Rodrigo Borgia hovers between life and death, while the danger from the college of cardinals might just pale in comparison to the danger of the wily Caterina Sforza. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: One Wedding and a Funeral

Even though the breathtaking act of Cesare murdering Juan left most of us wondering what could possibly happen next, just as François Arnaud assured me last week, the season finale of The Borgias was not without its own surprising and tension-filled moments. The "new Cesare" that Arnaud teased to TV Fanatic was born, Lucrezia continued her ascent to the Lady of supreme confidence, the Friar Savonarola was finally put to death in front of all of Rome, the Pope struggled with the news of Juan's death and then succumbed to Della Rovere's poison plan in the final seconds of " The Confession ." Read More... //

The Borgias Review: Nowhere Else To Go

I've written about it at length over the past couple of months, but it's worth noting again that the feud between brothers Cesare and Juan Borgia has been the most compelling material The Borgias has produced in its first two seasons. Said conflict came to a head in " World of Wonders ," and it produced an absolutely gripping penultimate episode of the Showtime series' second season. Since failing to come out victorious against Catharina Sforza at Forli , Juan's downward spiral has been both sad and magnificent. That did not change this week, as I was equal parts upset and excited watching the Borgia boy talk to himself, get high to the heavens on opium, throw it in Cesare's face that the Pope loves him more and finally hold Lucrezia's baby over the edge of the balcony. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: Oh Brother Who Art Thou?

After a week off for Memorial Day, The Borgias returned with an installment that worked much like a setup episode for things to come.  Other than Lucrezia's betrothing process coming to a conclusion, " Truth and Lies " was filled with stories that remained just on the edge of arriving to the party. Like a number of chapters in this second season, a major theme running through the hour was that of feuding brothers.  Not only did Juan and Cesare's ongoing battle continue to heat up, but it seems like Lucrezia - with the help of her mother - might have created another brotherly feud between her two related suitors. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: We're Gonna Have To Take The Boy

Since Francois Arnaud and David Oakes have both been so fantastic during The Borgias second season, it's a shame that the series has had such a difficult time showcasing them in the same episode.  "The Siege at Forli" was yet another example of this mishap as Cesare Borgia was sidelined for the majority of the hour. From his triumphant return, to his battlefield tactics, Juan Borgia was quite the standout once again.  It felt so good to have him back, especially when his return meant a pet panther and cigars for the pope.  I'm not sure which was more fun, watching the then unheard of cat bite the finger of Lucrezia, or watching Juan explain to Rodrigo and everyone else what the then unheard of cigars were and did. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: Do You Perhaps Take Gold?

Similar to Sons of Anarchy at its best moments, the second season of The Borgias has done a fine job at showcasing both the outside and inside threats to its protagonistic family in concert. While those coming from elsewhere - such as the Sforza forces or the Friar Savonarola - have been pushing the story of the season along, it is those issues close to the heart of the Borgias that has interested me most since the premiere. The epicenter of the series' success continued to be Francis Arnaud's work as Cesare Borgia during " Day of Ashes ." The eldest son of Pope Alexander kept striving towards earning the armor fit for the leader of the Papal Army, but per the usual, Rodrigo still didn't agree. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: Sex and Death 101

Following four episodes that had me singing the praises of The Borgias , the fifth installment of season two - " The Choice " - was markedly worse in terms of episodic entertainment. The hour continued to drag on and drag on up until Catherina turned down Cesare and Pope Alexander's offer to come to Rome willingly.  The best moment of the entire episode was probably watching Catherina toy with the Cardinal after pleasing him many a time in the bedroom. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: Sure, I Like Dags

Not only have the brothers Borgia been literally fighting over the past couple of weeks, but Cesare and Juan have now begun coming to figurative blows about who is going to have the more interesting start to season two of The Borgias . Thanks to the absence of the latter, and a superb performance by Francois Arnaud, " Stray Dogs " swayed things back in favor of Cesare as being the brother all viewers should have their eyes glued to while watching this captivating Showtime series. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: Say Hello To My Brittle Friends

The second season of The Borgias is not taking its time out of the gates. Following last week's exciting installment in which Juan figured out what was going on between Lucrezia and Paolo , and subsequently murdered the latter, " The Beautiful Deception " played as a thrilling next chapter. There were two major arcs driving the story of the hour: Lucrezia and Juan's family feud, and Cesare's bold strategy to fool King Charles into retreating. The former was a fantastic continuation of the main focus in "Paolo," and continued the running theme of the season thus far that the Borgias are fighting just as much with themselves as they are against those outside the family. Read More... //

The Borgias Review: Sans Paolo

Affections can be lethal in this Rome of ours. Vanozza's words could not have been a better reflection of " Paolo ."   The Borgias continued its strong start to the second season with a twisted tale of love, family, and betrayal this week. As much as I have commended Francois Arnaud for his performance as Cesare over the course of the first season and change, but darn it if David Oakes didn't steal the show as Juan Borgia during this hour. Read More... //