Okay, just to add some variety here by not ranting for a change. I’m going to sing some praises. Many many years ago, when I was twenty-five and actually finally choosing which trade to pursue rather than being a Jack of all of them. I saw the first TV production of Robert Graves’ I Claudius, and was absolutely astounded. Sure, the grotesque violence and the possibility of a glimpse of tit (just about unheard of on TV at the time) had its attractions, but what a story, and what a superb cast: Derek Jacobi, John Hurt, Sian Phillips, Richard Baker, Brian Blessed, Ian Olgivy and many more. In recent years, I was re-acquainted with the whole series via our neighbour at the time (Alan Wood – one of the nicest men I’ve known and to whom Cowl is dedicated. He died of bowel cancer.) and still enjoyed it. Caroline loved it too and it is perhaps a testament to the actors and the others involved in the production that it hardly seemed to have dated. Now we have Rome. I love this and think it perfectly entitled to the laurel crown which, to my mind, has been held by I Claudius until now. Yeah, it may not be historically correct but what a superb series. All the characters are well-portrayed, rich, in fact, and the whole thing roles along with a wonderful contemporary bent that makes it all the more believable, or maybe more accessible. My particular favourite in the series has to be Titus Pullo played by Ray Stevenson (pictured). We’re now enjoying season one again since Caroline bought it for me for our wedding anniversary. And long may it continue. Something else to note. HBO, who are responsible for this, are certainly good at what they do. The cartoon shown in the previous post is from them (I think) and they also did Band of Brothers. All power to them, too.