Rome 2.3 These Being the Words of Marcus Tullius Cicero
dir. by Alan Poul
Genre: drama, historical fiction
Script: Scott Buck
Cast: Kerry Condon, Kevin McKidd, Lindsay Duncan, Polly Walker, Ray Stevenson
Setting: Ancient times, Rome
Rated : 8 Stars
Things aren’t really going to well for Vorenus, are they? Dreaming about his wife’s suicide/attempt to distract Vorenus from killing her son. Waking up knowing that it is all true. Becoming a “son of hades” Being a general grump, although I suppose thinking that your kids are dead and knowing that you are the reason you wife is dead, not to mention the fact that you should have been protecting Caesar when he was assassinated is bound to put any one in a bad mood. But taking it out on poor Pullo? That’s just not nice.
And keeping the peace by not punishing the “defiler” of a 12 year old boy. Come on Lamb, think, do you really think his family aren’t going to respond, no matter what you say. If it had been your daughter… Pullo is making more sense than you, not a good sign. Cause yes, we love Pullo, but he often doesn’t seem sensible whereas you’ve usually been slightly smarter if more uptight and serious.
Meanwhile Atia has been acting all grumpy since Octavian left. We know this cause Octavia tells her drug-producing, posh-English-bird-sounding friend so after Atia casually insults her for being, you know, a tradesman’s daughter She then agrees to meet Timon, and then, just as quickly changes her mind. Timon must be happy about that. Atia, having just heard how unpleasant Macedonia is has decided it isn’t for her. And when she talks to Mark Anthony later she decides to persuade him into thinking along similar lines. Only she uses the reasoning that in Macedonia he’ll have no power and so be vulnerable to the likes of Brutus and Cassius. And eventually Anthony appears to have been persuaded. Silly Anthony.
End scene. Lets get back to the Pullo, Vorenus story line. It tuns out that the Uncle of the Defiled One and his mates have taken matters into their own hands and have gelded the defiler. Lamb is not impressed. Rather annoyed actually. Chicken shrugs, he expected it, and advises Lamb not to retaliate because that’ll lead to more retaliation and then gang warfare. Which is pretty much what Anthony told Vorenus to prevent. But what does Vorenus care about that, he’s a bad ass and everyone has to know. He tells Chicken to go “get it sorted” only Pullo won’t He aint no soldier now. So instead the other old soldier dude whose name I can’t be ased to remember goes. And Lamb and Chicken have a bit of an argument. Lamb thinks Chicken needs to “respect his author-ita”, Cartman style, Chicken thinks Lamb is insane and needs to cop on, and that he only trying to help, like when he took care of Lysander. Oops, Hagrid moment there Chicken. Letting the little fact that he knew about Niobe and Lysander slip doesn’t really do much to improve Vorenus’ mood. In fact, it does the opposite
Exit Pullo. and scene
Cicero and Anthony sitting in a room this cannot bode well for Cicero, especially considering that Anthony now thinks that Macedonia’s weather really won’t suit him, and that Gaul would be a lot more pleasant. And while Cicero may agree, he’d like to point out the fact that Gaul is Some Other Dudes. And besides, it is a little too close for comfort. What if Anthony had armies and stuff. But eventually through reasoned and rational debate, plus mention of molten gold, Cicero is persuaded that Anthony should get Gaul.
Back to Pullo and Vorenus, as they make up. Hugging and forgiveness. Aw, only I don’t really believe that Lamb is all kittens and fluffy feelings. Pullo still thinks that teaching Uncle of the Defiled One a lesson is a bad idea. Lamb shrugs, and tells Pullo that it is too late to do anything about it, as we realise as we cut to the Uncle being defiled. While having his head stuck down the latrine he was just using. Nice is not a word to describe this.
And back to Atia’s house. Where an Irish sounding dude shows up. He’s quite nice, in a non-threatening sort of way. Turns out he is Agrippa, and that Caesar/Octavian has sent him with a message for Octavia and Atia. Not much of a message for Atia, more of one for Octavia, although whether that is because Agrippa thinks Octavia is all purty and nice or because Caesar/Octavian thinks that I don’t know. Anyways, Atia isn’t impressed by him, and sends him on his way, letting him know that she knows he is up to no good, and that her son is a traitor. Agrippa leaves and Atia tells a slave to tell Anthony all about him and his treacherous visit to Rome. Octavia protests, saying Anthony might do bad things to “your son’s friend”. This does not sway Atia, as she dramatically proclaims that she has no son. Dun Dun Dun!
In Atia’s kitchen two slave/servants are chatting. One being the young fella that Castor is screwing, remember him, he was being beaten up before appealing to Castor to give him a job sucking cock? Only it turns out that he already had a job, Servilia has hired him to kill Atia. He heads off to report to her and is shown to be a cheeky git, with a slight touch of arrogance about him, he ups his pay demands, gets a kiss from Servilia and reveals that he could kill Atia at any time, but only with Octavia as collateral damage. This Servilia will not allow.
Cut to Brutus and chums in some desert, discussing Baboons having sex with Roman women. Honestly, that is the topic of conversation, although I lied when I implied that Brutus was doing the chatting. He is too drunk and too busy boasting about killing Caesar. Or justifying it through drunken boasting Anyway, the recipients of the boasting aren’t impressed, and we almost get a rumble. Before Cassius rescues him.
After a brief scene between Anthony and Atia, where he promises he won’t harm Caesar/Octavian, we return to the plight of Vorenus’ family. The sister-in-law finds a loose board and escapes, about to help the kids out when a guard comes on the scene. So SIL makes a run for it, leaving the others behind.
Back to the real action; Eirene hauling heavy buckets up stairs. She runs into Gaia, remember her, the whore-handler?, and asks her for help. Gaia doesn’t want to, and tells Eirene to carry her own piss. Not something Eirene wanted to hear, and as she continues up she mutters to herself about dog whores and whippings, until she comes face to face with the Defiler of the Uncle of the Defiler, hanging upside down from the roof, and quite dead. Hmm, I wonder what’ll happen now? Of course, Vorenus will demand that somebody else be taught a lesson. And says that they’ll have to go after Memmio, but he really wants to teach Pullo a lesson, so keeps needling and arguing with him, until he finally accuses Pullo of sleeping with Niobe. Chicken is hurt. Awww, poor Chicken, mean old Lamb. He, of course denies it until Vorenus keeps on with the accusations and so Chicken admits that yes, he fucked Niobe, as did many many others. Spread her legs like butter did Niobe Of course violence ensues Pullo’s bigger, but Vorenus is a mean bastard, and a little insane I’m guessing. Neither seems to get the upper hand, and downstairs all the proto-mafia-types are wondering what that noise is Wondering until Vorenus and Pullo crash through a wooden wall and, landing heavily on the stone floor below. They seem ever so slightly injured and dazed, a fall from an upper story room will do that. Pullo stumbles off, half supported by Eirene while Gaia tries to help Vorenus to his feet. He is having none of that though, not wanting to be touched, everyone moves away, leaving poor Lamb crying on the floor.
Quick scene with a very naked Brutus praying to Janus and washing himself clean of sins. And then a quick scene with Cicero, who is leaving the city, but, but, isn’t he supposed to be telling the Senate that Anthony doesn’t like the Macedonian weather and Gaul would really suit him so much more? Well, yes, he is supposed to be, but instead he has sided with Caesar/Octavian, and he has left a letter for Anthony, to be read in the Senate. And does it ever burn? Full of insults and accusations, calling him a wreck and a drunk, and worst of all, a woman. Anthony very unimpressed, but quite impressive in his glowering anger. Until he gives in to it and beats the reader of the letter to a bloody pulp. Obviously don’t shoot the messenger doesn’t apply here.
And in usual Rome style we jump ahead three months. Town Crier hand gestures to bring us all up to date. Anthony is renegade, Caesar/Octavian and the Senate are at war with him, the rebels will be defeated.
And Pullo and Eirene are back in Rome. Yes, they left, it has been three months since Pullo and Vorenus’ spate, and now the gods have told Pullo to have a cup of tea with Vorenus and get this mess all sorted out. Kisses and hugs everyone. Or words to that effect. But Lamb is nowhere to be found. Turns out that he went with Anthony. Hearing this, Pullo doesn’t think much of the gods and their messages. But wait, who is this? Why it is Sister-In-Law, with the shocking news that “the children… the children are alive!” Yay! Pullo heads north, see:
But the episode doesn’t end there, oh no, because we return to Atia’s house, where she is finally, for once in her life, eating alone. Which means that stuck-up-arrogant-boy gets his chance. And appears to take it, but we don’t know, because the credits roll before Atia digs in to her poisoned stew.