As I’m sitting here before leaving for work, I thought I’d throw together a quick post about a new obsession of mine – the Spartacus TV series from Starz which aired from 2010-2012. As usual, I’m late to the party, but then I don’t tend to watch much television beyond the things McKay and I watch together – namely Sleepy Hollow, The Walking Dead, Hell’s Kitchen (sometimes – not really into the latest run to be honest), and Master Chef. And I never watch things on the premium channels, because I just don’t have the time or interest to worry about what they’re showing. So yes, I missed The Sopranos, I don’t care about Mad Men or Game of Thrones. I tend to be a failure at any pop culture that isn’t related to science fiction.
But one day my husband (who watches an incredible amount of TV) left the set on, I don’t even remember what channel it was, and I became aware of this bloody (and I do mean BLOODY), violent fight happening on the screen, and I looked up and saw a bare-chested Dustin Clare wielding two swords, and I got sucked in at once. I watched the rest of the episode, and by the end I was hooked.
What I saw happened to be a scene from Spartacus: Gods of the Arena, which is a prequel series to the main Spartacus saga. I mentioned my interest to McKay, who poked around and suddenly hit me with the zinger that there was at least one canonically gay couple on the show, and once I got a look at Pana Hema-Taylor and Dan Feuerrigal I knew I was lost. I HAD to watch this show, and so I started with Spartacus: Blood and Sand, the first season. I was a couple of episodes in when McKay also decided she was interested, but we both really wanted to see the Agron/Nasir romance, which doesn’t happen until the second season. So I skipped the rest of the first season and McKay and I started watching second season.
All I can say is wow. Normally I’m not a fan of blood and gore, which there is PLENTY of in this show, enough to make The Walking Dead look positively mild by comparison. But it’s really sort of over-the-top in the “300” kind of way, so it doesn’t bother me much. And the romance between Agron and Nasir more than makes up for all of it! The beauty of the show is that homosexuality is treated absolutely no differently than heterosexuality. None of the other characters so much as raise a brow about it, and what’s even better is that there is no attempt to make either character “girly”. Nasir is definitely smaller than Agron in physical size, and while he has some truly gentle qualities, he becomes as fierce and deadly a warrior as Agron. The characters are affectionate with one another, as much as any of the het couples, and perhaps even a bit more so. In fact, I think that their relationship is portrayed the most realistically and romantically of any on the show. Granted that almost all the characters have issues (with a capital I!!) but the Agron/Nasir relationship is allowed to blossom and flourish without the overtones of guilt, pain, and betrayal that most of the het relationships have.
Anyway, yes, my new addiction in Spartacus. If you are interested in a show with a LOT of eye candy and don’t mind blood, it’s definitely worth checking out!