After last week’s lesson in the dangers of playing with matches, the latest edition of Spartacus: Vengeance opens with a series of reunions, ranging from very happy to mildly happy to really completely not-so-happy, all caused by Spartacus and crew returning victorious from bringing down the arena in Capua.
Happy reunion: everyone’s favorite new gay power couple, Agron and Nasir, get all smoochy and sweet when Agron returns from Capua (take that, David and Neil Patrick!).
Mildly happy reunion: Crixus and Naevia have their big moment when they reunite, but signs indicate that there may be trouble ahead.
Really completely not-so-happy reunion: Gannicus waits patiently by Oenomaus’ bedside, hoping he recovers enough so they can talk, but not enough so that Oenomaus can kick his well-deserving derriere up and down the mountainside.
Gannicus, of course, is proving to be the proverbial muscled-up, hunky fly in the ointment. Back at the base on Mount Vesuvius, Gannicus scoffs at what the former slaves are trying to do, predicting they’ll all be dead soon.
Mira scores early props for line of the week when she dryly responds, “Did he miss the part where we brought the arena down on his head?” I love kick-butt Mira. Seriously, I wish I had a Mira action figure that was designed so that, when you press down on her arms, her right foot would thrust out like a Rockette’s.
I’d also totally dig having Spartacus and Glaber action figures as well, but I’d probably spend most of my time having them make kissy face with each other, so, really, what’s the point (hmm, I wonder what would thrust out when I pressed down on their arms?)
In Capua, Gaius Hottius Glaber and Illithyia are attending the reading of her father’s will, who has apparently left them a vineyard and cattle and goats (oh my!). They are dressed for mourning, but, seriously, black is not Glaber’s color. It makes him look a bit ashen and brings out too much of the crazy in his eyes. I want my man crazy for me, not crazy in general—you know what I mean? Glaber rubs it in good that Illithyia is now dependent on him; somehow I think those tears are not for daddy.
In come a bunch of Romans, licking their wounds—though far less Romans than there should be. Turns out Spartacus has so spooked the Roman soldiers that they’re deserting the army.
Ashur tells Glaber that he needs to start thinking like a gladiator, which I’m pretty sure means less clothes, more sex, and always taking advantage of the $5 foot-long deal at Subway. (Hey, I’m down for all that.) Ashur tells Glaber that one gladiator equals three of his Roman soldiers, and Glaber tells him to prove it.
Ashur replies, “Sure thing, just hand me my abacus and I can work out the equation…now here ‘x’ is the coefficient that stands in for three gladiators, while ‘y’ is…oh, wait…” Ashur, of course, kicks Roman butt, and reminds Glaber that he was the worst gladiator in all of Capua, and that if he really wants to beat Spartacus, he needs to accept Ashur’s help and start showing him some serious favors.
Favor number one was apparently a Norelco, because the next time we see Ashur he is cleaned up and, I must confess, looking mighty fine. Cleanliness agrees with him. Lucretia comes to Ashur and gets all huffy about how he messed up their plan. She did not want Glaber to know about Illithyia’s little trick with the vial from last week; she just wanted it stopped.
Ashur starts giving her lip and Lucretia stormily says, “You forget your place,” to which Ashur replies, “No. I secure it.” Then, grabbing his former domina, he secures something else and…well, poor Lucretia. Still, Ashur seems to forget who he is dealing with. He may have wormed his way out of Season One, but I suspect if Lucretia has her way, Ashur will be worm food by the end of Season Two.
Back at Vesuvius (and hey, has anyone checked the calendar yet? They do know that thing is going to blow at some point, right?) Crixus is finally getting his freak on with Naevia. Unfortunately for him, Naevia starts freaking out. Apparently, after all she has suffered, the touch of any man is too much for her, even one as stubbly and sensitive as Crixus.
And how do we know Crixus is a sensitive guy? Because he spends the entire episode talking in that pained hushed whisper of his. Sure, it makes for a great sex voice on a two denarii-a-minute phone line, but it gets a little old after a while. Besides, it sounds like someone popped Crixus in the nether regions and he’s just trying real hard to keep his voice from going soprano á falsetto, you know what I mean?