The Borgias (2011–2013)
7.9/10
310
1 user

Relics 

Cesare unites the sons of the five Romagna families with his own army against Forli, and the Pope negotiates for a with Constantinople Jews for a holy relic.

Director:

Kari Skogland

Writers:

Neil Jordan (creator), Guy Burt
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jeremy Irons ... Rodrigo Borgia
François Arnaud ... Cesare Borgia
Holliday Grainger ... Lucrezia Borgia
Sean Harris ... Micheletto
Thure Lindhardt ... Rufio
Gina McKee ... Caterina Sforza
Peter Sullivan ... Cardinal Ascanio Sforza
Charlie Carrick ... Pascal
Sebastian De Souza ... Alfonso of Aragon
Edward Hogg ... Georges D'Amboise
Prometheus Aleifer ... Roberto Orsini
Pilou Asbæk ... Paolo Orsini
Leo Bill ... Cardinal Costanzo
Brendan Cowell ... Mattai the Hebrew
Cyron Melville ... Cardinal Farnese
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Storyline

With the King of Naples dead, Lucrezia sends for her son. The year 1500 is approaching and Pope Alexander has declared it to be a year of jubilation. Expecting large numbers of pilgrims in Rome, he wants the Church to provide the spectacle they will expect. He wants the cardinals to come up with money-making ideas. He also puts pressure on the representatives of the Constantinople Jews who came to seek permission to live in Rome, to contribute to the holy crusade against the Turks. Yet they have a different contribution in mind. The plague has returned and Caterina Sforza looks to use it as a weapon against the Pope. Cesare returns with his own army countering the Sforzas influence and intent on taking Milan. He quickly gains several allies. He is outsmarted however. Written by garykmcd

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Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Canada | Hungary | Ireland

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 May 2013 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Korda Studios, Etyek, Hungary See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

16 : 9
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Lance of Longitus (along with the Ark of the Covenant, the Original Cross, and the Holy Grail) is one of the greatest talismans of early Christianity. It is also known as The Spear of Longinus, The Holy Spear, The Holy Lance, The Spear of Christ, The Heilige Lance, and The Spear of Destiny. See more »

Goofs

When Cesare enters Milan with the french army, he finds Leonardo da Vinci's bronze horse partly dismantled, because the Duke of Milan had it molted down for cannons. In reality, Leonardo's horse existed only as a full-size clay model, from which a bronze horse should be made. The casts and 70 tons of bronze were ready when in 1494 the bronze was needed as cannons to defend the city, so the final bronze horse was never molded. The clay model was still the one in Milan when the french invaded Milan in 1499. See more »

Quotes

Cesare Borgia: Give me joy of my marriage, Father. I am an honest man at last.
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Soundtracks

The Borgias Main Titles
Written by Trevor Morris
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User Reviews

 
"Our church is driven by belief, and we choose to believe this is the Spear of Longinus"
20 September 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Despite it not settling straight away, with it taking half a season or so for the writing and pacing to become more consistent (have never properly faulted the production values, music and acting and love a lot of individual scenes, chemistries and little things), for me 'The Borgias' is an incredibly well made show regardless of any historical inaccuracies and addictive show. Also have always felt that there isn't a bad episode though have liked a few of the earlier episodes less on re-watches.

Am personally surprised that "Relics" isn't rated more highly here, though still a good score, and that it's rated lower than the still very good and nearly great previous episode "The Wolf and the Lamb". Sure it may not have the same amount of tension, emotional impact or as many scenes not for the faint hearted that that episode had. It also doesn't have any subplots noticeably weaker than the others, Cesare's for me had some dull moments, or any frustrating character behaviours, especially Alfonso's naiivety. Found "Relics" however to be a great episode.

Cannot find an awful lot to fault "Relics", though (sorry if this sounds like a nit-pick) there is a very noticeable camera setup shot in the emissaries exit from the meeting with Rodrigo. This may be a non-issue for some but it was very distracting to me and jarred with how amazing every aspect of the production values were throughout the show's whole run.

It is a shame because the rest of "Relics" looks wonderful. Love the sumptuousness of it all, how beautifully it's shot and how the more intimate moments especially are like one has stepped into a painting. Some of the best directing of 'The Borgias', personal opinion of course, is in "Relics", especially in the silent scenes with Rufio (like with the plague trap). Up there with Juan's burial in "The Confession" and the beginning of "The Face of Death". Other standouts being the through a chandelier view and with the spinning fireworks. The silent Rufio scenes are also the standouts on the music front, some of the show's most haunting. Cannot get enough of the spine-chilling opening titles sequence and the main theme either.

The writing has been one of the most improved aspects of 'The Borgias' over-time, along with the pacing and the character writing for Lucrezia. It provokes thought and there is a good deal of tension here, whether very obvious or quieter, and intrigue in the negotiations and with the spear. "Relics" does a great job with the theme of the appearance of power, summed up brilliantly in the above line in the review summary by Rodrigo (although some of the best lines go to Cesare). The story, despite being very political intrigue-heavy, is compelling and has some nice moments like Rodrigo in a beekeeper outfit, Micheletto having increased screen time and everything to do with the French army. It is not just all about negotiations.

Found the acting to be great across the board, Cesare has really come into his own since Season 2 and the dark intensity is still there in Francois Arnaud's performance with some levity too when returning to Rome. Jeremy Irons is wholly believable in his authority, commanding every scene he's in and how he shows how increasingly livid he is but subtly. Also loved how beautifully Peter Sullivan underplays Sforza, telling a lot with as little as a glance (something that Irons also has always been brilliant at), especially true in his disgust in the honey scene.

Concluding, great. 9/10


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