Spartacus War of the Damned

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I have been watching this show on netflix each week but it airs on Starz. This show is now on my top to watch list right behind lost. It is as bloody as 300 with the same slowmo action scenes. There is a ton of sex and full frontal nudity both male and female. Plenty of skin for both gay and straight guys. Lucy Lawless is in this also.

The show isn't for everyone. The way they do the blood will turn a lot of people off. I can dig though.

The blood splash kind of reminds me of the old Batman and Robin TV show. KA-POW .. BAM...

I'm on the fence, but I'm still loyally watching every episode. Sam Raimi gets a production credit and you can feel his influence in the series. It clearly is meant to be a cross between HBO's Rome and 300, and it does a good job imitating both of them.

It does end up pushing the exploitation line quite a bit. For example, in order to highlight that the graphic and stylized violence of the gladiators' ludus is somehow noble, they aired an episode where Spartacus went to fight in the no-holds-barred pits where the competitors were made up like horror movie villains. Spartacus is at the center of a torrid world of outrageous violence and sex beamed straight into the viewers' id, but his backstory is that he's a good man who's only mission is to find and save his enslaved wife. All fairly standard fare, but pushing the envelope of what one normally sees on television. Sometimes it makes me feel like fool for watching, but I'm still watching.

Storywise, it isn't as tight as Raimi's other projects, but it is still very early in the series. I'm just not sure if they are going to create characters and a story that are big enough to match the outsized world of violence and sex, but I'm still watching. Spartacus is no Titus Pullo by any stretch, but he's got room to grow.

Watched the first episode. Or, should I say, I watched the first 15 minutes of the first episode then turned it off. The visuals reminded me of a bad CD-ROM game from the 90's where the green screen backgrounds were very incongruous with the foreground. The blood splatter effects were terrible as well: they were clearly trying to go for a 300 vibe, but it came off completely fake and just damn pointless since it was used in just about every shot. After a while, I was thinking 'Ok, I get it, it's bloody! Move it along already!' I've heard it gets better, but that first episode (or what I saw of it, anyway) left such a bad taste in my mouth that I have no interest in checking out the rest.

Haven't seen it, but I think I added it to my instant watch Netflix list.

Oso wrote:

Spartacus is at the center of a torrid world of outrageous violence and sex beamed straight into the viewers' id, but his backstory is that he's a good man who's only mission is to find and save his enslaved wife.

That backstory must be macro'ed into screenwriting software out in Hollywood. I remember Spartucus' big motivation used to be that he didn't want to be a gladiator slave and kill for other people's amusement. Is that not enough anymore?

Funkenpants wrote:
Oso wrote:

Spartacus is at the center of a torrid world of outrageous violence and sex beamed straight into the viewers' id, but his backstory is that he's a good man who's only mission is to find and save his enslaved wife.

That backstory must be macro'ed into screenwriting software out in Hollywood. I remember Spartucus' big motivation used to be that he didn't want to be a gladiator slave and kill for other people's amusement. Is that not enough anymore?

No. Everything needs to be romanticized in order to attempt to appeal to as many demographic groups as possible.

Also, I'm pretty certain that this Spartacus isn't the Spartacus of slave revolt fame. If he is, they are leaving that for later. It falls a damn sight short of Kirk Douglas' portrayal, but then pretty much everything falls short of that.

Baron Of Hell wrote:

There is a ton of sex...full frontal nudity...female...Lucy Lawless

I wish I had Starz.

Rat Boy wrote:
Baron Of Hell wrote:

There is a ton of sex...full frontal nudity...female...Lucy Lawless

I wish I had Starz. :sad:

Get Netflix and join the online sensation before we all murder you.

dhaelis wrote:

Watched the first episode. Or, should I say, I watched the first 15 minutes of the first episode then turned it off.

You made it farther than I did then...

Oso wrote:

Also, I'm pretty certain that this Spartacus isn't the Spartacus of slave revolt fame. If he is, they are leaving that for later. It falls a damn sight short of Kirk Douglas' portrayal, but then pretty much everything falls short of that.

To be fair, that's an iconic figure in an iconic role. Kirk seemed to be made for that role, what with his dimple chin and legs that make diapers look almost fashionable.

The first episode was pretty poor and I stopped after that, but my wife has watched every episode since and she is really enjoying it, she says it improves a lot from the 3rd episode on.

For all those that didn't watch it, worry not, no Lucy Lawless full frontal. If you've seen episode 1 you've pretty much seen all the full frontal you are going to (not to say there isn't more, but it's pretty much those same people)

Stylez wrote:

The first episode was pretty poor and I stopped after that, but my wife has watched every episode since and she is really enjoying it, she says it improves a lot from the 3rd episode on.

Yes. I agree with this 100%. The next few episodes have really cleaned up nicely -- but this is common in series/movies as actors flesh out their characters a bit more and writers begin having some real basis for their characterizations that the actors impress upon them. The writing has gotten a lot better, the stories are starting to really develop and, well, if you couldn't sit through the first episode, at least try the second and see if its coming along for you.

Oso wrote:

It clearly is meant to be a cross between HBO's Rome and 300, and it does a good job imitating both of them.

To be fair, it's a heck of a lot more 300 than Rome...

Nosferatu wrote:

For all those that didn't watch it, worry not, no Lucy Lawless full frontal. If you've seen episode 1 you've pretty much seen all the full frontal you are going to (not to say there isn't more, but it's pretty much those same people)

Except for the last episode where Crixus showed his man junk and then wrestled Spartacus while they were both buck neekid.

Overall, it's a decent little time waster filled with oogaba, ultraviolence, and bad blood effects. Story and character-wise , it definitely is not up to par with similar shows from HBO (Rome kicks its butt).

Yeah I can't imagine comparing this show to Rome in any meaningful way. Sorry, not even close, on any front. Writing, directing, acting, art direction... Rome is better across the board.

It's trashy and dumb. That's not necessarily a bad thing, as Spartacus does have entertaining moments if you can let all the lame stuff slide, but please don't compare it to a quality show like Rome.

OG_slinger wrote:

Except for the last episode where Crixus showed his man junk and then wrestled Spartacus while they were both buck neekid.

Overall, it's a decent little time waster filled with oogaba, ultraviolence, and bad blood effects. Story and character-wise , it definitely is not up to par with similar shows from HBO (Rome kicks its butt).

I'm fairly certain that both of them were nude in the initial episode as well.

My biggest gripe is that they chose to call it Spartacus, the best guesses for the real life of Spartacus are very superfical plot points and the thing he achieved eternal fame for is not even touched upon in the show.

I'm not too familiar with the original Spartacus, but in the first episode of this series they name the gladiator Spartacus after an old king. He's a random gladiator that's named after a historical figure. They create a loose tie-in to the Spartacus name, but give themselves a good excuse to tell an original story. Works for me.

Bullion Cube wrote:

I'm not too familiar with the original Spartacus, but in the first episode of this series they name the gladiator Spartacus after an old king. He's a random gladiator that's named after a historical figure. They create a loose tie-in to the Spartacus name, but give themselves a good excuse to tell an original story. Works for me.

The problem is that they steal all sorts of other minor details from the historical Spartacus as well, clearly implying that the character is supposed to be the Spartacus of fame. And then go and just do some crappy half assed story that doesn't even go over what he is famous for. It'd be kind of like doing a show called Jesus, starring a Jewish guy who was a carpenters son, born around 2000 years ago to Joseph and Mary, and then making him the star of a biblical f*cking Dawsons Creek.

I bet you didn't like Smallville either.:D

Nosferatu wrote:

It'd be kind of like doing a show called Jesus, starring a Jewish guy who was a carpenters son, born around 2000 years ago to Joseph and Mary, and then making him the star of a biblical f*cking Dawsons Creek.

So this would be a comedy?

JC wrote:
Nosferatu wrote:

It'd be kind of like doing a show called Jesus, starring a Jewish guy who was a carpenters son, born around 2000 years ago to Joseph and Mary, and then making him the star of a biblical f*cking Dawsons Creek.

So this would be a comedy?

I'd watch it. Unless it's after 9:00. I'm old and don't stay up late anymore.

Stylez wrote:

The first episode was pretty poor and I stopped after that, but my wife has watched every episode since and she is really enjoying it, she says it improves a lot from the 3rd episode on.

May have to go back and watch then just to see. The acting was so atrocious that it didnt make up for the oogaba they were showing.

There are some high and low points. The episode where Spartacus just seems to keep making bad decision after bad decision (the third I think) I wanted to reach through the screen and strangle him. His wife is hot and should be on the show more. So far you've only seen Xena's boobage twice full on the other times she's wearing some pasties with a chain. I'm not sure how Joe Bob Briggs would score it but I'd say a hearty 8 and half breasts for sure.

I will admit it's trashy and some of the rendered sequences are incredibly campy. But I still enjoy it. It's nowhere near 300 or Rome but it caters to fans of both in ways. I have to say I am a fan of some of the shots (the in-helmet cams during fights) and the way the montages are portrayed.

I have watched since the beginning and will continue to watch, even though I agree it is strange for an already established warrior to be getting his ass handed to him by slaves constantly.

I was part of a pre-launch focus group for Sparticus last Fall. Hated it. Still hate it. Pass.

Stauf7,
He was a warrior, but it wasn't what his sole occupation was. Gladiators had nothing better to do than train in the art of combat. Spartacus may have been a good fighter, but it is all the gladiators did. Think a great beer league baseball player versus MLB players.

My biggest beef with the show is that I have to go out of Media Center to watch it, it does not show up on the Netflix Media Center plugin except only as a DVD queue option.

Nosferatu wrote:

Stauf7,
He was a warrior, but it wasn't what his sole occupation was. Gladiators had nothing better to do than train in the art of combat. Spartacus may have been a good fighter, but it is all the gladiators did. Think a great beer league baseball player versus MLB players.

Valid point!

Nosferatu wrote:

Stauf7,
He was a warrior, but it wasn't what his sole occupation was. Gladiators had nothing better to do than train in the art of combat. Spartacus may have been a good fighter, but it is all the gladiators did. Think a great beer league baseball player versus MLB players.

IDK about that reasoning. He was a warrior who repeatedly defended his town and served in the Roman legion for at least one campaign. The first episode showed him mowing through hordes of barbarians like a they were grass and then pretty much every other episode shows him barely capable of holding his own in single combat. If he sucked that much at combat then he would have been killed long before he was enslaved.

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