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TV show review: CONTINUUM season 4
PHOTOGRAPHY

SPARTACUS: BLOOD AND SAND The Complete First Season
DVD review by David Blackwell

DETAILS:  692 minutes, seven audio commentaries, featurettes, trailers
VIDEO:  1.78:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)
AUDIO:  English 5.1, Spanish
Subtitles:  English SDH, Spanish

STUDIO:  Starz Originals/ Anchor Bay Entertainment/ Starz Media
RELEASE DATE:  9-21-2010
DISC 1-   THE RED SERPENT/ SACRAMENTUM GLADIATORUM/ LEGENDS/ THE THING IN THE PIT
DISC 2-  SHADOW GAMES/ DELICATE THINGS/ GREAT AND UNFORTUNATE THINGS/ MARK OF THE BROTHERHOOD
DISC 3-   WHORE/ PARTY FAVORS/ OLD WOUNDS/ REVELATION
DISC 4-   KILL THEM ALL/ featurettes

A detailed SPARTACUS: BLOOD AND SAND series analysis is coming soon.  In other words, this series rocks- a stylized character driven action series with lots of fights and sex.   Still it is the characters that hold you, and that is what makes SPARTACUS: BLOOD AND SAND stand above what could have been like some so-so syndication series action crap of years past.    John Hannah and Lucy Lawless (as the husband and wife who own the gladiator school aka ludus) are like the Macbeths as they scheme to rise in power with their dreams of ambition and their decadence they participate in (they have their sexual ways with the slaves like it is nothing).   Meanwhile, Spartacus dreams of being reunited with the wife that was taken from him and seek revenge (and his freedom).    The first season is a mix of hopes and dreams only to see many of them crushed by tragedy and consequences of other’s actions.

 

SPECIAL FEATURES:

Audio commentaries-

THE THING IN THE PIT by Director Jesse Warn and actor Andy Whitfield

SHADOW GAMES by director Michael Hurst, actors Andy Whitefield and Lucy Lawless

WHORE by actors Andy Whitefield, Lucy Lawless, and Viva Bianca

PARTY FAVORS by actors Andy Whitefield, Lucy Lawless, and Viva Bianca

REVELATIONS by writer Brent Fletcher, writer/ Creator/ Exec-producer Steven S. DeKnight, and actor Nick E. Tarabay

KILL THEM ALL by writer/ Creator/ Exec-producer Steven S. DeKnight, and actors Peter Mensah and Katrina Law

 

SPARTACUS: BLOND AND SAND BEHIND-THE-SCENES- a 14 minute making-of featurette made for the Starz movie channel

GLADIATOR BOOT CAMP-   a look at the training the actors went through to play gladiators

GRIME AND PUNISHMENT-   a clips reel of the various fight scenes from the first season

ANDY GETS PLASTERED-   a look at Andy getting plaster put on him so the crew can match up the various scars that Spartacus gets during the series

LEGEND RE-IMAGINED-   a promo featurette about how they approached the show and why they wanted to make it

OH, THOSE RANDY ROMANS-   all about the sexual decadence of the Roman Empire as portrayed in the series

SHOOTING GREEN: THE SHADOW OF DEATH-   focusing on shooting the arena scenes against green screen and inserting the arena (and crowds)

EXPOSING YOUR LUDUS-   a blooper reel of sorts

 

FINAL ANALYSIS:  SPARTACUS: BLOOD AND SAND is a great start to a fantastic series filled with violence, sex, and stories that come out of the characters.   I can’t wait for season 2 to be made.  I am sad that Andy Whitefield won’t be around for season 2 (he dropped out to fight cancer which was in remission- my best wishes to Andy and his family).

 

This DVD review is 11-18-2010 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission.  Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com