I had in mind to watch Troy: Fall of a City twice: once with my classicist hat on and once with my ‘I like watching TV’ one. I thought that even if I became frustrated or struggled to enjoy aspects with the former hat on, the latter might be more successful. As it happened, I can’t face watching this show ever again. Nor is it so mentally taxing that I would need to watch it more than once to take it all in. In fact, I found I had time to start writing an article and make a cup of tea without missing much. Except maybe a few extremely sweaty sex scenes.
Films and TV dramas based on great classical texts tend to fill me with both joy and loathing. The number of children who take Ancient History based on having watched the dreadful 300 is great, right? A film has made them want to study a fascinating subject. Unfortunately, my own experience is that they aren’t that interested in finding out what Herodotus actually wrote about the Persian Wars. But then there are shows like Rome and obviously the film Gladiator and I reason that getting anyone talking about or interested in the ancient world must be a good thing.
Well. In walks the BBC’s new drama.