Episode: Spartacus: Gods of the Arena 1.05 – “Reckoning”
Original Air Date: February 18, 2011
This episode was worth watching the rest of the season. Holy. Cow. I’m not sure what could possibly be left for the series finale because pretty much everything (with the possible exception of two things) happened here in the most spectacular way. Also, no rape in this episode! It’s a red letter day for the House of Batiatus!
So the first thing I want to talk about is Mellita since her storyline has given me the most brain rage (after the whole “Rape an Episode” deal). Her dream at the beginning of the episode — where she’s having sex with Gannicus and Oenomaus finds them and kills them both — is something I was hoping would actually happen. Her drinking the wine Lucretia poisoned for Titus, causing her to die while getting heavy with Gannicus was just as good for me. Oenomaus has been my favorite character in this series, so on the one hand I feel bad that he came back to the house to find her dead, but that same part of me that likes this character was glad that she died in that way and he didn’t find them having sex with each other. The Mellita/Gannicus relationship seriously irritated me and I hated having to watch it. I felt so bad for her having to be forced to have sex with Gannicus just to entertain Varis, and I could understood the struggle and conflict the feelings that arose from that caused in her. So when she goes to Gannicus after he loses the competition to Crixus, thus making his sale to Tullius a go, I can see where this is kind of a one last go, get him out of your system kind of deal. However, Oenomaus is about the most honorable and dedicated man, not just in general but to Mellita and Gannicus specifically, and they know it. So considering the fact that both of them, but her in particular, would just spit on that and give in to lust, I honestly was glad to see her go. I would have preferred both of them go, but I’ve heard rumor that we’ll see Gannicus in Spartacus: Vengeance. There’s always hope that these two will have their own reckoning during that season. There was just something about this story arc that really annoyed me and I was glad to see it ended.
Diona getting out of the house with the help of Naevia was another story arc I was glad was resolved (hopefully). I do have to wonder if this character will show back up (she tells Naevia that they will see each other again). I hope they do, and that it’s in Spartacus: Vengeance and not in the last ep of this series where she’s killed with a bunch of other criminals during the halftime show at the opening of the new arena. I’m really pulling for this character to either save Naevia in the next season or to just disappear in this one because wasn’t it enough that she had to be raped in like every ep? Give the poor girl a break!
In the beginning of the ep, Titus and Quintus were still at odds with each other. Titus even held a competition between the gladiators of his house that Quintus purchased to see if all of them are worthy of being gladiators of his ludus. During the course of the episode, father and son start to slowly give in a little to each other. Quintus still gives everything up to stay with Lucretia, and that was nice to see (how much they both truly loved each other) for a couple of characters who are the epitome of vile nastiness otherwise.
The one thing that Quintus agrees with his father on is the need for a child, something he and Lucretia haven’t had yet (seemingly because something’s not working right with Quintus). Thus the start of Lucretia using Crixus for sex. She picks him because Gauls are supposed to rival Jupiter in the potency department, but she can’t stand to look at him and is still repulsed by what she’s doing (which is a far cry from Blood and Sand). However, she’s willing to go through with this in order to give Quintus an heir. Crixus, for his part, doesn’t seem to be that into her either so that never changed.
As many of us guessed, Titus totally got ganked and by exactly what/who we all thought. They tried to throw us off earlier in the ep with a really bad scene where Quintus attempts to build up the courage to bludgeon his old man with a piece of the old gladiatorial arena (which he obviously couldn’t do). No worries there because Lucretia has been the biggest snake in the grass EVER. Here, I totally thought she was the one to make the biggest character change, but she had been poisoning Titus the entire time — all the way back to the beginning of his “illness”! I figured she’d be the one to kill off Titus, but I did not have her pegged as being that devious prior to Gaia’s death. She full on poisons Titus with the wine Tullius gave him as an apology for killing Gaia in his house (this was also when the deal of selling Gannicus to Tullius for access to putting fighters in the new arena was brokered). This would make taking out Tullius easier for Quintus I think. One better is Mellita accidentally taking the wine and drinking it. With more than one person dead, and not just a father-in-law with a strained relationship but a trusted and seemingly valued servant, I think framing Tullius will be that much easier for Lucretia.
And with that, there’s only one episode left. Some of the questions I’m left with are: Will Gannicus be sold to Tullius now that it looks like he’s responsible for Titus’s death? Will Quintus find out how his father really died? Will Oenomaus discover what was going on between Mellita and Gannicus? How will Ashur and Crixus fair in the big arena battle? I think one thing’s for sure, and that’s that there’s going to be a spectacularly bloody battle and the House of Batiatus will rise to power from it.
Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars