Spartacus: War of the Damned: Season 1, Episode 5

Shadow Games (19 Feb. 2010)
"Spartacus: Blood and Sand" Shadow Games (original title)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Biography
8.9
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In an effort to bring rain to Capua, the Primus (a prestigious competition for the greatest of gladiators) is announced and Batiatus enters his champion Crixus and Spartacus against ... See full summary »

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Title: Shadow Games (19 Feb 2010)

Shadow Games (19 Feb 2010) on IMDb 8.9/10

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Ashur (as Nick E. Tarabay)
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Matthew Chamberlain ...
Ovidius (as Matt Chamberlain)
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Storyline

In an effort to bring rain to Capua, the Primus (a prestigious competition for the greatest of gladiators) is announced and Batiatus enters his champion Crixus and Spartacus against Solonius's Theokoles, an indestructible 10 foot tall god of the arena. Can Oenomaus train them sufficiently enough to win their battle ? Written by MaritoCamacho

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19 February 2010 (USA)  »

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Trivia

Theokoles fought in the style of Dimachaerus, which incorporated two swords and little to no armor. Such a style was selected for only very skilled Gladiators, as fighting without a shield was very dangerous. A part of Theokoles' back story was, that he fought with two swords and no armor simply because he enjoyed getting cut. (Which is supported by the numerous scars in his face and body, and themselves support tales of his being cut over a thousand times in the arena without falling.) See more »

Goofs

When Magistrate Calavius announces the Primus, he pronounces his own name wrongly. He says to the crowd, "In the name of my forefathers I: Titus 'Cavalius' present to you the final event..." See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good entertainment, intriguing teamwork, boomerang story but too many arcs, emotional and surreal ending
22 February 2010 | by (France) – See all my reviews

What's in the shadow of the giant ? It could have been a Saiyan if Shadow Games was a Dragon Ball Kai episode. Training, humiliation and redemption. It seems Spartacles was ready for his first Labour. Slay the beast. Win the crowd. Make Batiatus rich. Earn your freedom. Get Sura. But things aren't that simple in a wasteland where anyone would sell its own child for a drop of water. Teaming up with Crixus instantly sounded like madness. However arcs developed in the past episodes came back like boomerangs to nourish the story. Until the very end I didn't know what would happen. Indeed like puppet masters the writers played with our mind. How can you predict anything when you can't even trust a writer ? That's how much this show is corrupted.

Seriously even if the finale fight wasn't as awesome as I hoped it would be, it was still good entertainment. The events were twisted and the ambiance surreal enough to make me believe in miracles. But like in alchemy, life has its way of balancing itself. Is it the beginning of the end ? As for the usual arcs I think they tried to juggle with far too many. Batiatus revenge. Lucretia and Ilithyia's friendship with benefits. Crixus in love. I think they should have focused on the relationship between Spartacus and Crixus. So the idea had potential but I didn't like how it was executed. It doesn't mean it was disappointing, just different from what I had in mind.

To sum things up my opinion is mixed. Was it surprising ? Definitely. Is it a must see ? Of course ! But it'll remain in the shadow of past episodes. However I have to admit that the end was ambivalent enough to make me uncomfortable. It's quite smart because I really don't expect naive happy endings from the show.


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