With the third and final season of Starz’s hit show “Spartacus” finally upon us, let’s take a glance at what’s in store for the series’ epic conclusion.
1. Just look at the title
Or in this case, the subtitle, “War of the Damned.” Everything up until this point has simply been setting the stage for the grand finale that is season 3. The dwindling army at Spartacus’ command has now reached numbers in the tens of thousands, and Rome has declared war against the thriving rebellion. History shows that this story did not have a happy ending for everyone’s favorite armor-clad gladiators. Regardless, “War of the Damned” is gearing up to be one satisfying finale.
2. Epic character deaths
“Spartacus” has never been shy when it comes to killing off characters, and it is safe to assume that nobody is safe given the circumstances. This means that fan favorites such as Agron, Crixus and Gannicus are all pretty much a given for earning the glorious death every gladiator yearns for. Expect heroic deaths for all the major characters, as it is the only fitting exit for them. The fate of Spartacus, however, is up in the air, as his body was never recovered from the battlefield.
3. Bigger and better
In past seasons, events have built up only to cultivate in a grand season finale of blockbuster proportions. That is not the case for “War of the Damned.” If any of the final season’s previews can hint at what is to come, fans are in for massively brutal confrontations between the Romans and Spartacus’ armies in each of the confirmed 10 episodes. The previews have depicted battlefields cluttered with soldiers both living and dead, much like the battlefields in “300.” If anything, this season promises to be one very entertaining bloodbath.
4. New villains
Considering every foe of Spartacus up until this point has been treated to a very brutal, bloody death, some people would think the Romans would be shivering in their sandals at the thoughts of facing such a “savage slave.” Luckily for us, this is not the case, as “War of the Damned” introduces two new foes: the rich and powerful Marcus Crassus and the young, ambitious Julius Caesar. Crassus is “really a perfect foil for Spartacus,” Steven DeKnight, the show’s executive producer, said in an interview with IGN.com. Caesar, on the other hand, has yet to begin his historic rise to power but is still equally potent. These two new enemies should shape up to be the biggest challenge the rebels have faced thus far.
5. For honor and glory
“War of the Damned” has been four years in the making. After the first season, when original star Andy Whitfield tragically fell ill with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, fans were unsure of what to expect when it came to the future of “Spartacus.” Sadly, Whitfield lost his battle, but before passing away he gave his blessing for the show to carry on with Liam McIntyre taking over as Spartacus. McIntyre has done a superb job portraying history’s most famous gladiator, and this third season marks the conclusion of all the hard work that he, Whitfield and the rest of the cast and crew have put into making this show the success that it is.
“Spartacus: War of the Damned” begins Friday, Jan. 25, at 9 p.m. on Starz.