Is this seriously the same series as we watched last year? It’s not so much been overhauled as dragged up by the scruff of the neck and reworked into something considerably more compelling. True, there are still some corny lines of dialogue, and the “I can’t be with him because he’s common” line is starting to really grate, but it’s now got an edge to it that was seriously lacking last year, and is beginning to become one of the series I’m looking forward to watching each week.
The considerable downgrading of the humour has made a big difference: Hercules is now a figure who can be comic at times, but isn’t just there to be a mythological version of Miranda Hart’s on-screen persona. Ariadne has much more of a personality than previously; Pasiphae is colder, and much less of a mustachio-twirling baddy (metaphorical mustachios of course!). The battle sequences are well-choreographed, and communicate some of the frenetic energy of warfare, rather than a little dance between different groups.
Telemon, of course, was always a means to an end for Pasiphae, and I suspect she’s going to seriously regret leaving him a chance to survive in the desert – that is if she herself survives! I didn’t see the end of the episode panning out that way at all, and if the show can throw curveballs like that, we’re in for an interesting couple of months.
Verdict: With the introduction of some new characters from mythology, Atlantis is broadening its canvas, and becoming a highly watchable show. 8/10