Recently I was engaged in a conversation about the purpose of film in the 2011 media landscape. Films can be made as:2- Entertainment (to distract the viewer)
3- Social/Political Critiques (to make the viewer think)
Spartacus is taken from his wife and home, sold into slavery and forced to be a gladiator. He forms a friendship that gets him through the hell that has become his life. This friendship grows and grows, and late in season 1, the son of an aristocrat (an 10 year old child) forces him to kill his brother for no reason in particular. Spartacus realizes that the veil of hope he has been sold is a lie. He is a slave and has lost all control over his life.
The character goes off the deep end after that, and so did I (just ask Becca and Nick who happened to hang out with me right after I saw the episode.)