Game of Clones! Sex, swords and sorcery but no dragons… how new TV series about the Roman invasion of Britain might seem oddly familiar
It is the sensational costume drama that’s brimming over with sex, swords, slaughter – and sorcery.
Yet this is not Game Of Thrones – but the lavish new series Britannia.
Starring David Morrissey and Kelly Reilly, the Sky series is based on the hard, historic facts of what happened after the Roman invasion and conquest of Britain in 43AD.
There is a huge buzz of anticipation for the new show which is due for broadcast early next year on Sky Atlantic, coming along just at the right time for the legions of tearful fans who will be bidding farewell to Game of Thrones in its final season.
Chock-full of epic battle scenes, nudity and a cast of warrior princesses and brooding anti-heroes, Britannia shows the island nation bathed in blood with tribes so busy fighting against each other that they hardly noticed the Romans had landed.
Only later do the Britons – led by terrifying demonic druids – band together to face their new common enemy: the armies that represent the awesome might of the Roman Empire.
Here, we present a spoiler-free snapshot guide to the similarities between the two shows.
BRITANNIA : Office star Mackenzie Crook is unrecognisable as the psychotic druid Veran who fondles the severed head of one of his victims at the beginning of episode two.
To be fair Veran doesn’t always murder his enemies. Sometimes he uses his own brand of hallucinogenic drugs to brain ash them.
GAME OF THRONES : The murderous Ramsay Bolton played by Iwan Rheon took sadism to new heights and regularly had his enemies flayed alive. Viewers could hardly watch when he savagely beat and then castrated his slave ‘Reek’.
Office star Mackenzie Crook plays a psychotic druid in Britannia, left, while Iwan Rheon made sadism an art form during his portrayal of Ramsay Bolton during Game of Thrones
BRITANNIA: Queen Antedia (Zoe Wanamaker) is hellbent on avenging her son who was castrated by warrior Princess Kerra on their wedding night.
The desperate Queen will co-operate with anyone even the Romans on condition they will hand over Kerra alive.
GAME OF THRONES: Cersei Lannister – Queen of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros – has lost count of the number of people she has crossed to hold onto the reins of power. Lannister, who is played by Lena Headey, is the personification of ruthless ambition and a fearful lust for power.
Zoe Wanamaker, left plays Queen Antedia in Britannia, while Lena Headey is Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones who has been particularly ruthless in her attempts to seize power
BRITANNIA: Warrior Princess Kerra (Kelly Reilly) listens to no man – not even her father King Pellenor played by Ian McDiarmind. Kerra is handy with a knife and a bow and is hell bent taking full advantage of the divisions between the different warring tribes.
GAME OF THRONES: A skilled horsewoman and fighter, Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) is more than a match for any of her male counterparts. She is blessed with magical powers including telepathy beyond even the abilities of Britannia’s Princess Kerra.
Warrior Princess Kerra, right, and Arya Stark, left, are more than a match for any man
SEX & SAUCE-ERY
BRITANNIA: Little is left to the imagination from the very first episode onwards, after the nude sex scene when Prince Phelan (Julian Rhind-Tutt) discovers his wife Amena (Annabel Scholey) making love to his cousin Lindon. The Celtic trio prove to have an unconventional arrangement they have agreed to. Amena certainly isn’t complaining – but Phelan tries his best to grin and bear it.
GAME OF THRONES: Mother of Dragons Daenerys Targaryen (British actress Emilia Clarke) has a lack of inhibition stands out even in a series notorious for the amount of bare flesh on display. She’s been seen naked in the bath, in the bedroom – and walking through fire.
British actress Emilia Clarke spent a great deal of time in GoT naked
BRITANNIA: David Morrissey plays Aulus, the brave but brutal commander of the invading Roman forces. He can be merciless when it comes to dealing with his enemies and doesn’t think twice about crucifying captured British slaves. But he is an anti-hero with brains as well as brawn. He realises that a successful invasion depends as much on co-operation as it does on conquest.
GAME OF THRONES: The show has more brooding anti-heroes then you can shake a dagger at, but the standout is surely Jaime ‘The Kingslayer’ Lannister a skilled swordsman whose reputation was sullied by his back stabbing of a King, not to mention an incestuous relationship with his sister Cersei.
David Morrissey plays Aulus, the brave but brutal commander of the invading Roman forces, left, while the standout is surely Jaime ‘The Kingslayer’ Lannister, right
BRITANNIA: Where there are Druids there is magic and mysticism. Their powers may be real or they may be the product of some rudimentary drugs. Whatever the truth, otherwise sane Britons believe they have been on a journey to the ‘other side’ where they have conversed with the dead.
GAME OF THRONES: Where to start? This is the show where magic and flying dragons are an everyday part of life. But it is the White Walkers – the ancient, unhuman race from the far north of Westeros – who have struck terror into the hearts of viewers.
Britannia has Druids with magic and mysticism, while GoT has the White Walkers
PS: NOW CZECH OUT THE LOCATIONS…
Never mind the show title, Britannia is largely filmed in the Czech Republic, where a replica Stonhenge was built amid the dense woodland that passes for ancient Britain – while Game Of Thrones has made its Belfast locations a tourist attraction.
Source: Chris Hastings (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/search.html?s=&authornamef=Chris+Hastings+for+The+Mail+on+Sunday)