Caesar is dead and Marc Antony is in trouble. Well, he would appear to be, but since the dude is made of some kind of ancient Roman Teflon, he escapes multiple attempts on his life while barely breaking a sweat. Brutus is a little shaken up from his role in murdering Caesar, but Mommy Dearest, Servilia, has his back. Meanwhile, Vorenus hasn't even heard about any of this. He goes to his dead wife, Niobe, who he was going to kill himself before she beat him to it, and clutches her to him, covering himself -- not for the last time in this episode -- in blood. His children arrive to see the deed done and he lays a curse on them all. As if he wasn't already looney enough, when he finds out that Caesar is dead, he goes all the way around the bend. Poor Vorenus: the Eeyore of Rome. Antony gets bitchy and first forms a plan to leave the city with Atia's family and Calpurnia and raise an army to come back and destroy his enemies. Calpurnia refuses, however, and insists that Antony stay to hear Caesar's will read. The will declares Octavian his sole heir, and though it means nothing since Caesar's killers will ignore it, Octavian forms a plan to stay in Rome and work out a deal with Brutus and the Gang. Antony convinces them that if Caesar is declared a tyrant, all his appointments will be null and void, thus all the senators will lose their posts and have no power. But, if they declare his death natural, everyone gets to stay in charge and no elections will have to be held. They reluctantly agree, which they later regret when gives a rousing speech at the funeral and makes them leave the city. Pullo gives Eirene a "sorry 'bout that" apology for killing her man, and cheerily asks her to marry him. She accepts, especially when he promises "I won't beat you, or anything." The two of them go to help Vorenus, who is a mess. Apparently, Erastus has taken his children, violated them, and killed them. Wrong move, on his part. Vorenus and Pullo killâ¦everybody in his house, and finish him off, good and proper.
Previously on Rome...oh, I don't know, modern culture was created and the fabric of the artistic and religious rituals to which we still adhere was formed? Something like that. Read the recaps! Dang, people, next time you see me volunteering to sub in for someone in their time of recapping need, please make sure it's for a show about modeling and hair weaves. M. Giant did me a good turn a while back, filling in on a Gilmore Girls recap, so I had to repay the favor. Plus, I must say, there are really few finer human beings than ol' M.G. He and his lovely wife once sent me unexpected beers in a dark and desperate hour, thus putting me in their debt for eternity. But speaking of eternity, is it just me or did this episode of a show about a bunch of dudes running around in bloody togas just last nearly a full hour with no commercials? I thought I was pretty tough, really, having recapped Deadwood for three seasons of florid, foul dialogue and historical rigamarole, but this stuff nearly killed me. It wasn't so much that I didn't understand the words coming out of their mouths, it was that...no, that's what it was.
So, you heard, I guess, that Brutus and the Gang stabbed and killed your boy, Caesar, right? Yes. And they were very clever about it, too, keeping Marc Antony off the scene so that he would not be able to protect Caesar from his fate. The thing is, I guess they suspected that Antony might be pissed, so as he now emerges from seeing his dead leader in the Senate, Pompey's goons leap upon him, thinking they're going to tie up a loose end. Except, HELL NAW, Antony is not going down like that. He whips his robe into their faces and runs like the wind.
Brutus has somehow made it home after his hard day of murdering, shaken and shaking. As he trembles, cleaning Caesar's blood off his hands, Servilia comes in to congratulate him. "Our name is redeemed," she says, full-on Mommie Dearest. "The Republic is saved!" Brutus is not seeing it that way, nearly choking, "It was horrible, Mother. He wouldn't die. He tried to speak to me; no words came out." Servilia creepily whispers that now is the time to be strong, and reminds Brutus, clutching his quaking wrist, that "the people will need a firm hand." Brutus ain't looking so good.
Poor Posca, alone, weeps over Caesar's body on the floor of the Senate, and covers the dead man's face.
Also weeping: the Charlie-Browniest bastard in the Roman empire, Vorenus. Why? Because he went to kill his gorgeous wife, whereupon she immediately killed herself...and then he got sad because she was dead. And, oh, he is sad. He kneels over her body, sobbing, until he realizes he is being watched. Little Lucius stands silently by, gazing at Vorenus with his big mournful eyes. Vorenus staggers over to the child, staring at him like he isn't real. "Who are you?" he demands, desperately, grabbing the boy's face. "Whose child is this?!" he cries, and just before he's about to get really crazy, his daughters and their aunt arrive in the courtyard. When Vorena tries to protect the little boy, her father smacks her down to the ground. "I curse you," he spits. "I curse you all to damnation!" With that, the fool lurches into the streets, his face covered with blood, leaving his family to wail over Niobe. Now, Vorenus is out of it, but when he sees the people of the city rushing around calling out about the death of Caesar, two and two are starting to add up to five. Somethin' ain't right. It's all too much for him, and he falls to the pavement in shock.