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October 21, 2014

Rome: An Owl in a Thornbush

by Ryan j Budke, posted Sep 12th 2005 7:19PM
RomeYea, yea, yea I know it was really Niobe's baby, I was just playing the devil's advocate last week. I mean,  someone has to look for the good in all people, so why not me? Rome continues to enthrall me and it sucked that this episode was only a little over 40 minutes long. Hopefully this won't become a trend, because I need me my ancient italian fix. Last night's episode was another exciting foray into the dramas and politics of a burgeoning empire.

We start right off with Atia taking her anger out on her poor assistant, she's furious that Caesar has crossed over into Italy and is on his way to Rome to overthrow the government. Her fear is reflected among the senate, although Pompey is still cocky enough to believe that his legions can take on Caesar whenever they need to and be victorious. Caesar is barreling down on Rome and sends our two favorite grunts, Titus and Lucius with a small detachment to scout for any signs of resistance and to take a declaration to whoever's in charge in Rome should they make it there.

Word gets back to Pompey that Caesar's men (Lucius & Titus' group) have dispatched of his own scouts and he quickly prepares a "tactical" retreat to the south with the senate. They'll wait until spring and then come to reclaim Rome with Pompey's legions. This doesn't go over well with Cato and has many others among the senate worried. One of the most pressing concerns in a civil war is how to pay for and compensate the troops, so Pompey sends one of his most trusted soldiers, Durio, with a small number of other soldiers to collect some money from the royal treasury. The soldiers however have a different plan and quickly turn on Durio, killing him and escaping with the money while Pompey, completely unaware, marches on confident that everything is going according to plan.

So you may be wondering to yourself, now that Pompey is out of town and Caesar's not quite there yet, who's in charge? Well, who do we know that's a power hungry control freak still in Rome? You got it, Atia quickly manages to become the man in charge, trading money for a good word in Caesar's ear when he arrives. After a party she throws her only daughter Octavia sneaks out to meet her estranged husband Glabian. Atia finds out and dispatches her men to make sure that this is the last meeting they have. When Glabian's dead body is delivered to their doorstep the next morning a devastated Octavian wonders if her mother had anything to do with it. And even though we as the audience know better, she swears she didn't and while Octavia believes her, Octavian remains a little suspicious.

On their way back to Rome, Lucius, Titus and company intercept the group of soldiers that are stealing Pompey's gold. Even though the thieves are disguised as drovers, Lucius quickly sees through the the disguise and a battle ensues. After wiping out all but one of Pompey's rogues, Lucius and Titus find themselves on the steps of the Senate building. They post Caesar's proclamation and Lucius promptly retires, explaining to Titus that he's had his fill of being a rebel and can no longer go against the sanctity of the Republic. The episode ends with Titus searching and finding the Pompey gold wagon and managing to disguise it and himself moments before Caesar and the rest of the 13th Legion comes around the bend.

As I said in the begining, another strong episode and I'm enjoying the show very much. My favorite parts still remain whenever Titus and Lucius are on screen together. They are such a perfect fit, and tonight's scenes with the brute Titus explaining how to woo a woman and just exactly what the "clit" is were priceless. I would not be disappointed if the entire episode centered around them. I also liked Brutus' throwaway line about some even more horrible tyrant some day killing Caesar.... Some things that I didn't really like were the Glabian scenes, I know they're there to setup the conflict between Octavia and Atia but they just felt too forced and cliched for my taste. I like how even Pompey's biggest supporters are starting to doubt his continued cockiness and confidence. Anyone with a computer and an internet connection could tell you what's gonna happen, but actually getting to watch someone self-destruct is just so damn fun.

Next Week:
Caesar finally arrives in Rome and what will Titus do with his new found riches? 

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Phil Bovenzi

As usual a good review. I wish these episodes were longer. I appreciated the knowledge about the stars from Lucius. I did not know that. And I appreciated the knowledge about women from Titus. I did not know that! (smile)

September 17 2005 at 10:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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