Like most people, I grew increasingly nervous when I heard that there was a new season to Spartacus after Blood and Sand or even Gods of the Arena and that it was to be named Vengeance. It had little to do with the actually series but I was concerned about the actor that would be cast as Spartacus after the brilliance of Andy Whitfield.
Andy Whitfield had an air about him when he played Spartacus, I had never seen him in any series before but his demeanor brought so much to the show. He was built for it, his fights always left me yearning for more and that epic sex scene he had with Ilithyia made me actually wish for that one instance that I was the Roman lying there. He was truly a true god of the arena and honestly speaking there nothing about his stint as Spartacus that I have forgotten, even his face is forever etched in my memory. That being said when I learnt that he was ailing, it hit me hard like he was a close family member or even a friend; his spirit was beautiful. He was a brilliant actor and from how he carried himself and from his interviews; he seemed like a remarkable and passionate person and I was sure that his boots could not be filled by another living soul. The producers made a good move introducing Gods of the Arena to give themselves time to find a suitable replacement. That was when they introduced pure craftmanship with the inclusion of Dustin Clare as Gannicus. Oh my goodness, Gannicus could stand against any man with his smirk and with his boyish giggle he could totally “mash up” the arena and any one that was sent out to fight him. In Gods of the Arena, we lost so many gladiators but at the same time we also got to learn all of the stories behind each of them, what made them into the men that we saw standing before us as they fought in dust and unsanitary conditions. We saw firsthand what Romans were made of as well and I wished that if I had lived in that era that I was a part of Spartacus’s camp; fighting for a cause and not a Roman. We were afforded the opportunity to see up close how life was for them in Capua living in the house of Batiatus and being forced to perform sexual acts and fighting to the death for the amusement for their masters and their friends. We got to see the true definition of the word slavery lived out by these gladiators, these men who were not free from the bondage of their masters and the cracking of a whip. When Gods of the Arena ended, the clock started ticking quite loudly as my friends and I would sit googling prospects suitable to be Spartacus. Andy Whitfield made the man a beast, a man who was undefeated and even though he died he will always be the one and only Spartacus for me; or at least I thought so.