November 11, 2005
My Rome Addiction
Posted by Christine Hurt

We now interrupt our regular programming of law schools/rankings/ssrn talk to bring you something important -- popular culture.  If ProfB had not admitted it first, I would not have the strength to admit that I am addicted to HBO's new series, Rome.  Although I had doubts after the pilot (probably due to my huge expectations), I can now say that the only non-family programming that I watch with any frequency is my Sunday installment of Rome.  (And Rome is almost by definition "non-family programming.")

I do disagree with ProfB's characterization of Vorenus as a "puritanical prig."  Vorenus is the ultimate Republican (both big and little "r").  He loves the republic.  He believes that the gods love the republic.  He is the one of the few truly religious characters among many falsely religious characters.  He believes in the military, he believes in the Senate, and he believes in the rule of law.  He was faithful to his wife during the 7 1/2 year that he was fighting the Gauls.  He is brave and merciful.  I think Vorenus and his wife are interesting because they are the glimpse of the middle class.  Vorenus was a soldier, then he came home and became a merchant, and now he is standing for political office. 

I also like Titus Pullo, who seems to have come to a nadir in his story arc.  Pullo is a more intelligent Lenny from Of Mice and Men.  His caring for Vorenus and his wife leads him to torture and kill the brother-in-law lover and his care for the slave Eirene caused him to impulsively kill Eirene's fiancee.  I hope things get better for him.

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