Britannia Season One (2018) Review
My Bloody Reviews Verdict 5

Britannia Season One (2018) Review Britannia begins in 43AD as the Roman Army, determined and terrified in equal measure, returns to crush the Celtic heart of Britannia – a mysterious land ruled by wild warrior women and powerful druids who can channel the mysterious forces of the Underworld. Arch Celtic rivals Kerra (Kelly Reilly) and ..

Summary Rating: 5.0 from 10 5.0 normal

Britannia Season One (2018) Review

Britannia Season One (2018) Review

Britannia begins in 43AD as the Roman Army, determined and terrified in equal measure, returns to crush the Celtic heart of Britannia – a mysterious land ruled by wild warrior women and powerful druids who can channel the mysterious forces of the Underworld. Arch Celtic rivals Kerra (Kelly Reilly) and Anteida (Zoë Wanamaker) must face the Roman invasion led by the towering figure of Aulus Plautius (David Morrissey) as it cuts a swathe through the Celtic Resistance.

Starting 18th January 2018 Britannia, the first co-production between Sky and Amazon Prime Video, ran for nine episodes all approximately forty-five minutes in length – aside from the first episode which runs for just over an hour. Critical opinion was mixed for acclaimed English playwright Jez Butterworth’s historical fantasy, with many seeing Britannia as Sky Atlantic’s attempt to cash-in on its own Game of Thrones’ success.

Being one of those rare beasts that has never EVER seen an episode of Game of Thrones, nor feels inclined to, I cannot comment on this or compare the two. What I can tell you is that, following a promising set-up, Britannia gets bogged down in being too talkative to the extent that midway through the nine episodes I began to lose interest. It actually breathes more like a theatre piece rather than the incorrectly anticipated action clash between different factions.

This is hardly surprising when you consider that the writer, Butterworth, is better known for his theatrical leanings. Butterworth has stated that he was less interested in historical accuracy and more interested in exploring the conflicts that arose with two religions – Roman and druidic – coming together. There are conflicts in abundance, so much so that it all becomes rather forced and dull. This is a shame as the premise had the potential to be so much more than just being endless squabbles punctuated by the odd splatter of gore.

There’s nothing wrong with Britannia’s production values, with the used locations of Wales and the Czech Republic being rightly exploited for their dazzling visual beauty, and the actors are all first-rate, with Mackenzie Crook stealing the show, and chilling the bones, as the eerie Veran – it’s an astonishing performance. Here’s hoping that the forthcoming second season addresses the issues that have blighted the first and delivers something more balances and well-rounded rather than be all talk and no trousers.

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