• Network:
  • Series Premiere Date: Jan 21, 2011
  • Season #: 1
Spartacus: Gods of the Arena Image
Metascore
57

Mixed or average reviews - based on 6 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 133 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
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  • Summary: The prequel to Spartacus: Blood and Sand features the life of the first gladiator of Capua, Gannicus (Dustin Clare).
  • Genre(s): Drama, Action & Adventure
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 6
  2. Negative: 1 out of 6
  1. Reviewed by: Darren Franich
    Jan 18, 2011
    75
    Spartacus Minus Spartacus is an engrossing piece of wheel spinning.
  2. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Jan 21, 2011
    75
    It's obviously not for the squeamish, nor perhaps for the refined. But it's al-i-i-i-i-i-ve in so many ways. So what the hell, let's rock.
  3. Reviewed by: Mark A. Perigard
    Jan 21, 2011
    67
    Starz's Spartacus - Gods of the Arena is endlessly creative when it comes to all things stabby. It seems to have a bottomless bucket of fake blood in its production budget.
  4. Reviewed by: Ginia Bellafante
    Jan 20, 2011
    50
    The result is a production even more fantastically soapy than the first, visually elevated by an apocalyptic video-game look in which the orgiastic sex and violence are presented with a studied, syncopated choreography.
  5. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Jan 18, 2011
    40
    Still, worrying overly much about plot misses the point. Spartacus is all about atmosphere, and even its cheesy "300"-type visual style (a little more polished than last time) and slow-motion action exist entirely to advance that aspect.
  6. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    Jan 20, 2011
    25
    Unadulterated rubbish, and exactly what fans expect. Bravo, Starz.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 27
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 27
  3. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. Feb 5, 2011
    10
    The 'Spartacus' series takes place in a time when gore and sex were the ultimate forms of entertainment. It seems strange, then, that the critics' main complaint regarding the show appears to be its violent and sexual content. Personally, I find such aspects fitting, not gratuitous. To be sure, the violence and sex is (relatively) graphic, but nothing a Starz audience shouldn't be able to handle.

    The plot is engaging; the characters are sufficiently multi-dimensional. At the end of the day, the show strikes a balance between campiness and honesty that is rather impressive. I would recommend this show not only to those who enjoy their TV with a healthy dose of blood and sex, but to anyone who appreciates well-written action, with a little political scheming thrown in for good measure. I would not recommend it to the squeamish, stuffy, or anyone else too high-brow to enjoy a show with the above characteristics.

    Grade: A-
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  2. Feb 22, 2011
    10
    Do not be dissuaded by the promotional material for this show depicting lots of flashy sex and violence. This is no '300' clone. Beneath the veneer lies a show with profound depth and character development, and one of the best plots I have ever seen on any screen. This speaks even more to the original Spartacus season, which literally had me and my friends on the edge of our seats. Give it four episodes to work out its identity and the story will catch you like a fish on a hook. Watch it with your friends. Me and my buddies have been doing a weekly Spartacus night for months with no girls allowed. Highest Marks! GO out of your way to watch this! Expand
  3. Apr 22, 2011
    10
    These critics bash the show for nudity and violence, without getting to the heart f the show. This show is just plain awesome. I liked season 1 but this one is much, much better. The fighting scenes have been toned down here, so there is much more plot and story, which is excellent. I really feel like this is a great concept of what life may have been like. The love and passion between the top two characters makes me feel. I dunno about season 2 to be honest, because without the lunesta (sp?) I'm concerned about the ability to make a good show. I will watch and give it a chance, but the two best characters are dead from season 1. Another prequal perhaps ? Expand
  4. Jan 21, 2012
    10
    Look at the disparity between critic and user reviews! As of the time I'm writing this, all 20 user reviews are POSITIVE. An excellent idea by Starz to create a mini-series prequel to the first season of Spartacus: Blood & Sand, Gods of the Arena delivers intriguing backstories on the major characters while introducing a few new ones. I just hope Gannicus rejoins his gladiator brothers in Vengeance. Expand
  5. Sep 2, 2013
    10
    All I can say is that those who are and a lot of people loved "Blood and Sand" series, they absolutely will not csalódni.A author also threw in a large shovel all téren.Csak I recommend one of the best shows I've ever seen. Expand
  6. Sep 6, 2013
    9
    Acting as a prequel to "Blood and Sand", this mini-series takes Starz "Spartacus" series to new heights. It shows off more impressive blood and gore effects, darker and sicker moments, and an excellent tale. It may only consist of six episodes but it's hard to ask for a better prequel. Watching moments unfold like the rise of Crixus and Oenomaus becoming doctore is awesome, and helps pull you into the fact that this is a prequel. It also adds new characters, all of whom fates are revealed, that are used to great effect to help deepen the narrative. The fact that no minor detail is overlooked is amazing. Everything you would expect this prequel to explain is here. Considering that this takes place before Spartacus' arrival the focus here is more on the schemes of Batiatus and Lucretia, but it still has some of the best and brutal action scenes around. All in all if you're a fan of the previous "Spartacus: Blood and Sand" then you will enjoy "Gods of the Arena". It's just as fantastic and adds even more depth to the events of "Blood and Sand". It's not only a fantastic prequel, but is able to stand on its own to feet as a fantastic show thanks to its excellently written plot and bone crushing action. Overall, I don't think I could have been more impressed. Expand
  7. Jan 24, 2011
    7
    I won't lie; this show is the ultimate guilty pleasure. Beautiful women, even more beautiful men (all wearing as little as possible), impossibly hot sex, gravity-defying fight choreography, arterial blood spurting like the fountains of Bellagio: what's not to like? Well, the dialog is not to like. Yes, it's true that Latin lacked definite and indefinite articles, but randomly removing them from English speech makes conversations sound so stilted that it's a wonder the actors get through their lines, especially when they have to mix in profanity. I'll bet it's easier to run up a wall and dive into someone's shoulder with a gladius than it is to utter "Only my Gannicus could win contest f*cking blindfolded" or "Words fall from your mouth as sh*t from *ss." But, aside from dialog, Starz has the exuberant artifice of the series exactly right: heroes and villains engaged in action-packed melodrama, no justification, no apologies. And the hero of this prequel, played by Dustin Clare, is a treat. I like Andy Whitfield's Spartacus, of course, but it's fun to watch someone enjoying himself in the arena after all that suffering and rage. Extra points for finally showing a Gaul who keeps his long hair. Expand

See all 27 User Reviews