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Viva Interview Los Angeles Times 15 April 2010
Published on: 14 April 2010

Image"Spartacus: Blood and Sand" is, by the title of it, about the lives of gladiator slaves. But it's the women who wield the sword in this sexy, ultra-gory breakout hit for Starz. The season finale is Friday night. And yes, there will be blood. How do we know that? We won't give anything away, but the title of the episode is "Kill Them All."

Wednesday, we spoke to Lucy Lawless, who stars as the society-climbing and scheming Lucretia. Now we chat with Viva Bianca, who plays Ilithyia. The way Ilithyia see it, her husband has been betrayed by Spartacus (in truth, her husband did the betraying), and she wants Spartacus dead. She plots every which way to hurt him -- including trying to have him killed in a most violent fashion -- but along the way reveals a side that audiences will find startling in a female character. Ilithyia's girlish, silly, princess facade gives way to a perverted lust for the violence of the gladiator's arena -- and the slaves who do the dirty work.

In short, it all turns her on in a way that will have you reaching for the rewind button because it's so subtly disturbing. Other times, it's out in the open: At one point, she wheedles her way into a grand opportunity -- she gets to decide which freshly purchased slave to take on as her own personal gladiator. So she has all the slaves drop their loin cloths. And -- how do we say this delicately? -- she chooses the most impressive one and promptly puts him to work.

Read The Interview