ROME S01E01: The Stolen Eagle or The One Where Bron Understands the Appeal of Titus Pullo
Welcome to a new blog feature. Jess and Jen and I were missing Merlin Club, so now, we’re rewatching Rome. Well, Jen is rewatching it. Jess and I are watching it for the first time. You can join us every Monday night on Twitter at 9PM EST – #LegionXIII
Before I get to the recap, I have to point out our FREAKING AWESOME artwork. This was done by Jess’ FREAKING AWESOME daughter. She also did our banner for Merlin Club. And you can check out her work on her Deviantart page and also hire her to make spectacular drawings for you!
Okay, so the show opens with a battle of Roman soldiers against Gaulish warriors in which Titus Pullo misbehaves, breaks rank and completely pisses off Vorenus. He’s sentenced to being tied up and flogged and also condemned to death. He was also being delightfully cocky and belligerent, too. You get the feeling that perhaps he’s had just about enough of all the shit everywhere.
A short time later, we see Caesar in Gaul, the public humiliation of the Gaulish leader involving being barearsenaked in the town square and having to kiss Caesar’s nifty Eagle on a Stick™.
Even though Julius Caesar won, he’s having a rough time. His daughter, Julia, died horribly in childbirth, as did her daughter. Julia was married to Pompey and whatever uneasy friendship/truce/business arrangement/sharing of power Pompey and Caesar has crumbled at her death. Caesar orders Pompey to remarry immediately.
Atia, Caesar’s niece (and Jen’s girlfriend,) after some lovely, sweaty sex with some rando soldier type, decides to send her bratty as fuck kid, Octavian to bring a special horse as a gift to Caesar so he’ll like them best.
Meanwhile, in the Roman Senate, people are speaking out against Caesar and demanding he be recalled for misusing his power and being a warmonger and an overall jerkface. But Pompey defends him because BFFs. But privately, he’s got worries about Caesar and sends one of his slaves off to Gaul on a mission. He also gets introduced to a woman named Cornelia as a potential replacement wife for Julia.
Caesar’s nifty Eagle on a Stick™ gets stolen and Marc Antony sends Vorenus off to retrieve it, and feeling like he’s completely fucked anyway, he orders Titus to come along for the ride and he agrees to commute that pesky death sentence.
Back in Rome, some weaselly dude named Brutus tells Pompey that morale is low because of Caesar’s missing nifty Eagle on a Stick™ and Atia gets a letter from Caesar, telling her to be a good girl and find Pompey a new wife. So, she orders her daughter to divorce her husband and marry Pompey. There’s some sort of intense blood sacrifice where a bull is sacrificed on some sort of platform while Atia kneels underneath and gets covered with fresh, hot bull blood. But it’s cool, she’s got a warm bath waiting. Later, they go visit Pompey and she tells him to go ahead and nail her daughter, Octavia, since he’s gonna marry her anyway. Because she’s apparently the Kris Kardashian of Olden Tymes. Pompey, predictably does just that.
Closer to Gaul, Caesar’s bratty nephew with the horse gets set upon by ruffians and is taken as a slave. Vorenus and Titus get their horses stolen while they were sleeping and see the fancy horse for Caesar and kill everyone but the bratty nephew to get it. Then they discover that not only is the pompous little ass Caesar’s nephew, but Pompey’s slave who stole Caesar’s nifty Eagle on a Stick™ is hiding in the wagon with said nifty Eagle on a Stick™.
They return to Gaul victorious, deliver the horse, nephew and nifty Eagle on a Stick™ to Caesar. Caesar delivers Pompey’s slave’s head to Pompey. Pompey marries Cornelia instead of Octavia and she demands his head. And Atia, like the Momager she is, promises it to her.
Okay, so now…the questions.
My favorite part of the episode: It has to be where a man who was *just* crucified confesses to Vorenus what he knows about the theft of Caesar’s nifty Eagle on a Stick™ and Vorenus tells the soldier who crucified the dude to take him down and the soldier just sighs and rolls his eyes like, Are you fucking serious?! I just got him up there. I laughed about that all week. Because I am a terrible person.
My least favorite part of the episode: The graphic depiction of said crucifixion. I’m not terribly squeamish, but I found that…unsettling.
Favorite costume: Servilla’s loden green dress she wore to the party. This doesn’t show how pretty this dress is, but I’ll be honest, I’d wear this every day.
Team Atia or Team Servillia, and why: It’s kind of early to tell, but at this point, I’m going with Team Atia, because I enjoy some professional level scheming.
Favorite watch-a-long tweet (obviously used with permission):
Guess Jess’s head canon. It’s early, but I feel certain it’s going to revolve around Titus Pullo and Vorenus getting it on.
What made Jenny super happy? You mean besides naked, glorious Atia?