Thursday, July 19, 2007

Tightus Pullover

I’m very aware that not many of my readers appear to watch the BBC’s Rome so I am possibly heading for a comments desert on this one but I just can’t resist writing about it.

Quite why more people are not watching this show is frankly beyond me. It is definitely the best thing on TV at the moment and Karen and I are already in mourning that the BBC and HBO have no plans to fund a third series. They must be mad, though – as with Life On Mars – I can respect their integrity in quitting while they’re ahead.

Last night was a huge, sumptuously cooked steak of a show.

Mark Anthony enthralled with Cleopatra knowingly commits political suicide by refusing to admit his Roman wife sent to see him by Octavian Caesar. It is of course precisely what Octavian wants: an unmistakable premise for war. In one ingenious move Anthony has been forced to betray both Rome and the goodwill of the Roman people. The end is nigh.

Lucius Vorenus knows that war is coming but declines the chance to escape it. He knows he no longer has anything left to lose and is too stiff-necked to do anything to change it anyway. He knows this also and accepts it. The end, again, is nigh.

And Pullo!

Well, for me, Titus Pullo stole the entire show. A breath taking performance by Ray Stevenson clearly illustrates that beyond the beefcake thuggery and gory sword work, Stevenson is clearly an actor of the highest calibre.

As his second wife Gaia lies bleeding to death after saving his life she makes a deathbed confession: it was she that poisoned his first wife, Eirene, killing both her and their unborn baby. What could Pullo do but blankly strangle the last remaining drops of life out of her and then dump her body in what appeared to be a cesspool. It sounds callous and over the top but you had to see it. It was handled so well I’m still full of admiration the morning after. The wash of emotions that swept over Pullo’s face was amazing.


Rare indeed.


Tristan said...

Yep, I'm loving Rome too - and I'm gonna be in Cyprus for the last episode *Weeps* I know we know what happens to Mark Antony and the boy/man who becomes the Emperor Augustus - but what about Pollo and Vorenus?!

Hey Steve - no chance of you burning it on a DVD for me?!!

TimeWarden said...

I got a similar impression that readers didn't share my enthusiasm for Bryan Ferry! I put it down to my being ten years older and thus having grown up listening to him.

Good to see that you still posted on "Rome" regardless. I would watch it if there were more hours in the day! I used to watch more telly than I do now. It's having to be in front of a set at a certain time that puts me off watching more and, obviously, I can't tape everything!!

Steve said...

Hi Tris,

I'd love to mate but we don't own a CD burner! We're having friends over on Sunday night so the chances are we're going to tape it anyway on good old fashioned VHS - I'd be happy to post the tape to you after we're done with it if that's any good?

Steve said...

Hi TimeWarden,

I know what you mean and there's a lot to be said about being selective. Despite appearances Karen and I actually watch very little television and we're weirdly proud of that... especially in light of the fact that I seem to be very vociferous about the television I do watch!

I must admit my knowledge of the great Bryan Ferry is extremely feeble - mostly confined to the hits he had with Roxy Music and his own crooning hits. I suspect I'm probably missing out on all the really good stuff and the hidden gems. But same as you - there aren't enough hours in the day to listen to all the music I'd like to let alone watch enough telly!


Probably the reason I didn't start to watch it was because it sounded quite academic and I am a shallow person(shameful statement for a history graduate!).As anyone who has read my blog will notice I tend to watch a lot of FLUFF TV.At present Dora the Explorer is on, what can I say?

Steve said...

A little fluff TV is fine! Karen and I have been known to relax with an episode of Charlie and Lola once in a while!

Steve said...

Tris - of course what I meant to say was that I don't own a DVD burner...!