A series I still haven’t gotten around to watching yet, and which I profiled last December, is coming to its official end as the Starz network will end Spartacus after the drama series’ upcoming third season.
Why, especially since the series is Starz’s highest-rated original series? The network says the the decision “was made in tandem with series creator/exec producer Steven DeKnight to allow the sword-and-sandal drama to go out on a high note.“
So expect the next and last season of the show to role “all of the remaining action and drama of Spartacus’ journey into one stunningly epic season that will be extremely satisfying for everyone who’s been along for the ride,” said DeKnight.
Based on reactions to my last post, I know some of you are fans. So are you disappointed?
Of course I even mention this because there are black people in its starring cast.
One of those black people is Peter Mensah, who’s been a constant throughout, appearing in Blood And Sand, as well as Gods Of The Arena, and this year’s Vengeance.
He plays a character named Oenomaus, once known as Doctore, born a slave, rebelled, became a prominent gladiator and eventually a trainer of gladiators, including the title character, Spartacus.
Mensah, a Ghanaian-born Brit has actually been active since about 1995, appearing in both TV and film; although, from a scan of his IMDB page, I’d say his role in the Spartacus series just may be his meatiest and highest profile yet. Earlier this year, he was cast in a recurring role in HBO’s popular series True Blood.
The other black person in the series starring cast is a newcomer – Cynthia Addai-Robinson. She joined the series with Vengeance this year, playing a character named Naevia, described as “the former body slave to Lucretia who was banished from the ludus for engaging in a love affair with Crixus. She represents all that Crixus still lives for, driving him to fight alongside Spartacus in mutiny against Rome in the hopes of one day finding her. Crixus longs to see her still alive, to rescue her from exile and be reunited in love and freedom.”
The character was originally played by South African actress Lesley-Ann Brandt in both the Blood and Sand & Gods of the Arena seasons of the show; but she was replaced by Addai-Robinson for the current season.
Past credits for the theater graduate (Addai-Robinson) from Tisch School of the Arts at New York University, include roles in Tina Mabry’s acclaimed feature debut, Mississippi Damned, as well as in Colombiana, with Zoe Saldana.
For those unfamiliar with the series, both Blood And Sand and Gods Of The Arena are on DVD, and VOD, so you’ve got some options there.
And for a glimpse at what you’ve been missing, if you haven’t been keeping up with the series since its beginning, here are 2 video clips, both featuring Peter Mensah; the first a profile of his character; the second a fight scene from the show between him and Spartacus.