I, Claudius (1976): Season 1, Episode 6 - Some Justice - full transcript

Tiberius, aided by Sejanus, is proving to be a harsh ruler with only Germannicus able to keep him under control. However, whilst he is in Syria Germannicus is mysteriously poisoned. His widow Agrippina is able to rally public support due to his popularity and accuses Piso, the governor of Syria, of being the slayer Despite claiming an alibi Piso and his wife Plancina are brought before the senate to stand trial, with Martina, a star witness, being kept under wraps. In fact Martina was the poisoner, encouraged by Germannicus's son, young Caligula, whose insolence and taste for incest with his sister are already giving his elders cause for concern. Piso claims to have scrolls incriminating Livia and Tiberius in the murder but Plancina, in an effort to save herself, stabs her husband to death and passes it off as remorseful suicide. Thus the case is closed.

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(HE BELCHES)

Shouldn't eat so much at night.

(HE BELCHES)

Mushrooms.

Yes. I'm working too hard. Yes.

Too much work. I must get it
all done though. I must finish.

Now, where was I?

Augustus died, yes.

Uncle Tiberius took his place.

But he didn't want it. Not then.



Waited too long.

Yes. Strange man.

Filthy brute.

All power corrupts.

Only one man kept him in chock -
Germanicus, my brother.

My dear brother Germanicus.

Tiberius sent him to Syria
to take command and then...

(AGONISED SCREAM)

Let his body be laid
in the marketplace at Antioch

so that the people may see the marks
of poison and witchery on his body.

Let word be sent to Rome.
Germanicus is dead.

Germanicus is dead.

Oh, nothing now stands between Rome
and her Imperial destiny.

(MOURNFUL TRUMPETING)



Thus, my children...

does your father come home to you.

Ashes in an urn.

Look at him! Remember him!

Remember all your days
how your father returned to you.

(CROWD MURMURS)

Take it, Castor! Carry it to Rome.

And by the love you had
for my husband,

defend his children
and avenge his death!

My babies! My babies!
What have they done to you?

And Claudius, dear Claudius -
you, I know, loved him.

He was dearer to me than anyone.
Nobody had such a brother.

Where is the Emperor?
Where is Livia?

Too stricken with grief
to appear in public.

- And your mother?
- The same.

Oh, is their grief
greater than ours, then?

Along the way,
in every town and village,

the people flooded to pay
their respect as we passed.

The air was filled
with cries and lamentations.

Look at the faces of these people.

It's as if they?ve lost a son
or a father of their own.

Yet the man he called father
and the woman who was his grandmother

do not come out to great us!

I ask again, is their grief
greater than ours?!

(ALL CRY) No! No!

Put the ashes on the hearse
and let us journey on to Rome.

(LOW ROAR OF A CROWD)

There must be a hundred thousand
people out there.

Mars Field is ablaze with torches.

The funeral will be over soon.
The crowds will disperse.

Why did they admire him so?

People always have
the Emperor to blame.

My husband was Emperor for 40 years
and he was admired by everyone.

Ah, well.
I wasn't referring to gods.

The troops would have made
Germanicus Emperor, if he'd agreed.

Germanicus didn't believe in emperors.
He'd have done better if he had

There's a lot of bad feeling
and it's all directed at me!

What do they want from me?
They always preferred him to me. Why?

You just don't have
a lovable nature.

Even your own son
doesn't care for you much.

- I'm loved by many people.
- You're loved, but not well loved.

- And you are, I suppose?
- Unlike you, I don't care.

He's profoundly loved,
but also profoundly dead.

There's no harm in loving the dead.
Everybody's loved when he's dead.

- I wouldn't count on that.
- What do you want, Mother?

I'm told that your son Castor
and Agrippina

intend to prosecute Piso
and Plancina for treason and murder.

- They have no proof.
- They could tell a pretty tale.

A pretty tale isn't proof.

A different story from the one
you've bean telling for five years.

You've buried many men
with your pretty tales.

Where is he now?

My last report said
he was on his way to Rome.

I won't have him tried.

Better to have him tried
than to live under a cloud.

- That won't trouble Piso.
- I was thinking of you.

Has it aver occurred to you
that it's you they hate and not me?

There is nothing in this world
that occurs to you

that has not occurred to me first.
That is the affliction I live with.

I can't believe it.

Dearly as I loved my son, I can't
believe what you're saying.

Piso, yes, we all know his record.
But Tiberius?

Then why did he appoint Piso
Governor of Syria?

There were others
he could have chosen.

It wasn't a good choice,
I grant you,

but I can't believe that an Emperor
of Rome would stoop to such methods.

Those are his methods.
He doesn't need to stoop.

I'm sorry, Castor.
I know he's your father.

Say it. You can say nothing against
my father that I've not said myself.

It's not for us to accuse
the Emperor. We have no proof.

Proof! The people won't need proof.
The people know. They?re not fools.

I've told the prosecutor to prepare
charges against Piso and Plancina.

- On what gr-grounds?
- Treason and murder.

- Is there really proof of murder?
- And of witchery.

Is it possible? Barbarian Jew
that I am, I find it incredible

that sophisticated people
believe in witchery.

Oh, scoff all you like, Herod,
but judge for yourself.

On our return to Syria from Egypt,
Germanicus fell ill

and suspected that Plancina had
bribed her way into our kitchens

- and had his food poisoned.
- But why?

Because Germanicus
had dismissed her husband, Piso.

So I prepared all his food myself,
but he was able to eat very little.

He complained that there
was a smell of death in the house,

and began to believe that Plancina
was using witchcraft against him.

He made a propitiating sacrifice
of nine black puppies to Hecate...

..which was the proper thing to do
when being victimised.

And the very next day,

a slave who was washing the floor
noticed a loose tile.

Lifting it up, he saw beneath it
the naked and decaying corpse of a baby,

its belly painted red
with horns tied to its forehead.

We seerched every room
and equally gruesome finds were made.

The corpse of a cat with rudimentary
wings growing in its back.

The head of a negro with a child's
white hand stuck in its mouth.

The skull of an ass with the word
Germanicus written across it.

Oh, cock's feathers smeared in blood
were found among the cushions.

The word Rome written upside down.

And the number 17.

Only I knew that the number 17
upset him dreadfully.

(HEROD) Plancina must have had
accomplices.

There could not have bean.
The woman dabbles in witchcraft!

(CLAUDIUS) Go on, Pina.

One of the things that upset him most
was the appearance of his name,

each day shortened by a letter.

It would appear quite suddenly
without explanation

in rooms to which the servants
had no access

and where the windows were too small
for a man to climb through.

He told me he was doomed.

I told him not as long as he had
the green jasper charm of Hecate.

It was under his pillow
and that comforted him.

He knew as long as he had that,
nothing could happen to him.

That night, while he was asleep,

he felt a tiny movement
under his pillow.

He turned on his side
and fumbled for the charm.

It was gone.

Tell me, Herod,
how did it disappear?

Nobody but myself
was allowed in that room.

Who could have taken it? Who?

Caligula, darling,
what are you doing out of bed?

- I've had a bad dream, Mother.
- Oh, my poor baby. Come here.

- What did you dream?
- Horrid dream.

I dreamt there were bats
sitting along the shelf in my room.

Then they flew down and sat on me
until I was all covered with them

- and no one could see me any more.
- Poor baby.

- You shouldn't eat before bed.
- Mother, he's bean through so much!

He stuffs himself with things.

Perhaps he'd like to sleep with Drusillus?
He'd be company for him.

Would you like to sleep
with your cousin?

- I'd rather sleep with Drusilla.
- Drusilla? Your sister?

At your age?
What is the world coming to?

- He doesn't mean it.
- He's been too long in the East.

Syria is no place
to bring up a Roman child.

- I don't like it here.
- You'll have to get used to it.

What was so wonderful
about the East?

Herod Agrippa is talking to you,
child!

It was full of strange
and mysterious people and things.

The Syrians made a great fuss
of him, I'm afraid.

He wandered all over Antioch
with the house slaves.

Too much freedom.

I don't think so.
His father was very strict.

Would you like to sleep in your
cousin's room as Claudius suggests?

- I'll go to my own room.
- I'll take him. Say goodnight.

Goodnight.

He's very overwrought.

Now, what about the t-t-trial?

Do you think you can prove
a charge of poisoning?

We have a witness - Martina.

She's a notorious poisoner
and was seen often with Plancina.

- Where is she?
- On her way to R-Rome.

She's being kept hidden
in different places.

We must find a place for her here.

Sejanus' agents are looking for her.

I know a place. A house
of a merchant friend of mine.

Good. I've applied for permission
to prosecute in the courts.

Oh, I think
that's n-not a good idea.

Better in the courts
than in the Senate by my father.

He can f-fix the courts
behind the scenes.

If he's tried in the Senate by him,
T-T-Tiberius will be on trial too.

Clever, Clau-Clau!

He's right. You'll be better off
in the Senate.

We'll move for a trial in the Senate.

In the Senate?
What's wrong with the courts?

I tried for the courts, but my son
and his friends pressed for the Senate.

I had no grounds to oppose them.

Well..

If it's the Senate, it's the Senate.

Why should I be concerned?
I'm no stranger to the Senate.

If my enemies have friends there,
so have I. They?ll find that out.

- And you will be hearing the case?
- Of course.

Well, then, what better guarantee
of justice have we?

And justice is all Plancina and I
came home for.

We've done nothing
to be ashamed of -

except that it makes me ashamed
to have to say so.

That was very well put.
I couldn't have put that better.

But that shame will be theirs
in the end.

Certain people
will come to rue the day

they accused Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso
and his wife of murder!

They?re arraigning you
for treason as well

Treason?

Oh, it's treason now, is it?

What will they think of next?

That I caused a plague of moths?

Or it is I who am polluting
the Tiber?

There was a drought in Syria
when I left, perhaps I caused that?

I should prepare your defence well

I shall That will take me no time.
But treason! Where is the treason?

I mean, I had certain disagreements
with Germanicus,

but I wasn't his house boy.

They were very cold to us, you know -
Germanicus and Agrippina.

From the start, they snubbed us.

Naturally.
They knew why I was there.

I had not been made Governor
of Syria to follow like a small dog.

I was there as watch dog
for my Emperor, and they knew it.

Oh, the insults
we bore at their hands!

(PLANCINA) Members
of his own command were ashamed.

At official banquets,
we were seeted on the third couch,

and Agrippina gave herself such airs,
she might have been queen!

And they accuse me of treason.

Oh, don't talk to me of treason.
Not to me.

What has my whole life been but one
of service to Rome and my Emperor?

My sons, too. Let the jackals howl.
I have nothing to fear.

My head is held high.
I'm ashamed of nothing...

(KNOCKING)

I gave orders not to be disturbed!

My lord, the Commander of the Guard
has an urgent report to make.

Wait here.

He says very little.
He neither agrees nor disagrees.

- He already plays the judge.
- The judge? How?

He listens, but not with sympathy.

That's just his way.
He's a very cold fish.

It's not what I expected.

Each one written
in his own handwriting.

Quote: "I have
the utmost faith in you."

Quote: "Any steps taken
to chock disloyalty

"will be looked on kindly
by the Senate."

What did he expect me to make
of such phrases? I'm not a fool

- They are his tacit agreement.
- But they bear his Seal

No letter bearing the Imperial Seal
can be read in public.

I don't need it
to be read in public.

They will be beside me in the Senate,
mute, but eloquent.

They will plead our case
better than Cicero.

Every Senator will understand
their meaning

and vote the way he believes
his Emperor wants him to.

Who is the woman, Martina?

Martina.

The widow of the Roman who settled
in Antioch. We knew her slightly.

Did you know she was notorious
as a poisoner?

Poisoner? Has she ever
been convicted of poisoning?

What of her?

Sejanus says she is in Rome
to be a witness.

Where is she?

His agents haven't found her yet.
Do you have anything to fear from her?

Not if she speaks the truth.

But if she's held incommunicado,

who knows what they might
persuade her to say?

Well, let's hope we find her first.

I loved this room. It was my life.

But you won't mind letting it to us?

- Who can afford to maintain an empty room, but you've got to pay in advance.
- My friend will pay.

- Are you taking the room?
- Y-yes.

You'll like it.
It's got a very fine view of the river.

If you stand on the box, you'll see.

It's n-n-not for me.
It's f-for my mother.

Oh! Well... it's not very comfortable.

What about those soldiers?
I'm not letting a barracks!

No questions, Gershon.
She's being locked up.

Locked up?! What kind of a son are you?
"Honour thy father and mother!"

- Do you want us to look elsewhere?
- Of course!

What do you think I run here?
A jail?

Is t-t-that enough?

If I'd approved of what you are
doing that would have been enough

but since you're offending
against Mosaic law...

It's Roman law here, Gershon.

It's Roman law everywhere.
That's the trouble. But one day...

With that kind of son, you've got
to be lucky with your daughters.

Like everyone else,
I grieve for Germanicus.

But apart from the charge of murder,

we must consider
the question of treason.

Did Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso incite
his troops to mutiny and rebellion?

Did he bribe them to support him?

Did he make war
to regain his province?

The case against Gnaeus Calpurnius
Piso may now be heard.

If it please the Emperor, my father,

I have been asked to open the case
against the accused.

In the matter of murder,

we shall be bringing before the House
clear evidence of poisoning.

In the matter of treason, we shall
show that after Germanicus' death,

Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso raised
the troops in a rebellion

against the new governor
of that province.

Let go of me,
you horrible German woman!

- What's this?
- I hate you!

- What's the matter?
- He is disgusting!

- What has he done?
- Oh!

- What has he done?
- That child is a monster!

I'm not! You horrid German!
I'll burn your house down!

Stop it! Stop it! Come here!
Now, what is all this G-German?

It's German if he doesn't like it.

- What has he done?
- He knows!

I didn't do anything! I didn't!

Honestly, Uncle Claudius. I didn't
do anything. It was a game.

I found him in Drusilla's bed.
Naked, the pair of them!

They?re revolting.
I've locked her in her room!

- Mother...
- You're a blockhead to believe him!

- Where are you taking him?
- The cellar.

Please don't let her take me.
I'm afraid of the cellar.

You leave him with me.
I'll t-t-talk to him.

He needs a good whipping,
not a talking to!

Claudius, you're such a fool!
I've no patience with you.

It should have been you who died,
not Germanicus! What use are you?

Now, don't you know

that you sh-shouldn't play games
like that with your sister?

Eh? Don't you know
how w=wicked it is?

- Why?
- Why?

- B-because it is.
- Why?

Don't answer me back
or I'll clout you round the head!

Now, you listen to me.

Now, a sister is a sister
and she's not to be p-p-played with -

ever, do you understand?

You can't p-p-play with her
and you can't m-marry her.

- But she wanted to...
- I don't care what she wanted!

You're disgusting, the pair of you.
I shall talk to Dr-Drusilla later.

- What's the matter?
- Martina's disappeared.

- What? !
- We went to fetch her. She was gone.

The guard outside
had been overpowered.

- Oh, Sejanus?
- Who else?

That man's spies are everywhere!

Thick as flies in summer!

We've lost our chief witness, then?

That won't save the pair of them.
What's he doing here?

He's been v-very naughty.
Mother was going to thrash him.

Can't people leave him alone?
Hasn't he been through enough?

When I heard of the death
of Germanicus,

I was on the island of Cos.

In fact on my way back to Rome
to report my dismissal to the Emperor.

Yes, and complain about it.
I make no bones about that.

Now, my accusers say
that I entered temples

and made sacrifices
in an orgy of celebration.

(SHOUTING) So you did!

One ewe and a goat!

What orgy. And why? To celebrate
the birth of a grandson.

To celebrate
the death of Germanicus!

The living have rights!
You would have done the same.

Why did you return to Syria?
Why didn't you go to Rome?

I was still Governor of Syria.

(ANGRY SHOUTING)

We have the written instructions
of Germanicus,

ordering you to leave the province.

Surtius was Governor of Syria.

Illegally!
That governorship was mine!

The man who had unfairly removed me
was dead.

I had my appointment.
I had my instructions.

I knew where my loyalties lay.

- Read them out!
- Read the letters!

I have no need to read them!

My defence will stand
on its own merit.

(ANGRY SHOUTING)

I said I have no need to read...

Unless order is maintained
in the House, I shall adjourn!

If Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso's argument
is to rely upon instructions,

this House has the right
to know what's in them.

(SHOUTS OF AGREEMENT)

These letters
bear the Imperial Seal

No one has the right to read them.

The Emperor may consent
to having them read.

- They have no bearing on the case.
- Why produce them?

They?re not evidence.
They are here among my papers.

(SHOUTING AGAIN)

If it please the Emperor,

I move that any instructions
received by the accused from Rome

be entered as evidence
of his guilt or innocence.

I second that motion.

Those letters
bear the Imperial Seal

The Seal of the god Augustus
himself.

There is no precedence
for making their contents public.

I will not create such a precedent.

The motion is denied.

(ANGRY SHOUTING)

They got more
than they bargained for!

They thought they had a rabbit in the
Senate, but they had a tiger. Eh, Plancina?

Oh, leave us, my friends.
Plancina's tired.

A good night's rest and a little
peace and quiet will work miracles.

Our enterprise will prosper again
tomorrow. Goodnight, my friends.

What's the matter, Plancina?

I don't like it.
It didn't go the way it should.

I thought it went very well

- Using those letters was a mistake.
- What do you mean "mistake"?

You saw his face.
He'll never forgive you.

We were carrying out his orders.

He won't thank you
for reminding him of it.

I don't want his thanks,
as long as he remembers.

He'll never forgive you, never.

I'm not asking him for forgiveness.

He should be asking for mine. That
trial should never have taken place.

Then why has he allowed it? !

He had to give them a show.

Germanicus has powerful friends.
He can't just thumb his nose at them.

So he gives them a trial

A trial is one thing,
a conviction is another.

That he would never allow! Because if we're
guilty, so is he and so is his mother.

He knows that and the Senate does.

We did what we were asked -
provoke Germanicus into showing his hand.

Did that include
bringing about his death as well?

Yes. Well, that was your idea.

- My idea?
- Yes.

Oh! What does it matter?

It turned out to be an additional bonus
for them. They?re not complaining.

What do you mean, it was my idea?

Well, wasn't it was you that came to me and
said it "could it be managed?".

Well, that's wonderful!

- I'm to blame then, am I?
- Of course not.

I can see the way your mind is
working. I'm going to be sacrificed.

- What are you on about?
- I'm going to be sacrificed at the temple!

- Well, I won't be! I won't be!
- Stop it!

- Yes, what is it?
- Lucius Aelius Sejanus is here.

- Show him in.
- What does he want?

How would I know?
For heaven's sake, control yourself.

I don't want him
to see you looking like this.

I came to tell you, sir, that I've
had guards placed all around the house.

Why? I have guards of my own.

Yes, of course. But the crowd is very large
and seems in an ugly mood.

What's their mood to me? I go where
I please in Rome. Nobody stops me.

The Emperor requested it...
for your safety.

Well, I mean, if it's for our safety,
we're very pleased, eh, Plancina?

I understand their chief witness
against me has disappeared.

So it seems.

Perhaps they never had
one in the first place

Oh, I think they had one, but,
unaccountably, she's disappeared.

Oh, by the way, the Emperor asked me
to ask you for the letters.

The letters?

Since they are documents of State,
they should be placed in the archives.

After all. they might get stolen
or fall into the wrong hands.

As a matter of fact I was
just about to send them around.

We were just talking about it...
eh, Plancina?

Here they are.
Give them to the Emperor.

Tell him I will never forget
the things he wrote.

- I treasure in my mind every word.
- Thank you.

The Imperial Guard will escort you
to the Senate tomorrow.

You needn't worry about the crowds.

Tell the Emperor I am grateful
Tell him I'm always of service.

Tell him Calpurnius Piso is his
humble servant and always will be!

You'll have to sacrifice them.

The mob will not have them
acquitted.

They?re dragging Piso's statues
to the Tiber and smashing them.

Its as though they already have
the meat hooks under his chin.

What are they saying about me?

That Piso and his wife
had your approval for everything they did

If you let them go,
they?ll be convinced of it.

But, above all,
they praise Agrippina.

The glory of her country,
they call her,

the only true descendant
of Augustus.

Did he give you the
letters without complaint?

He expects you to save him,

but you must not.

I have come to tell you, Tiberius,
that I and all of Rome,

hold you responsible for
my husband's death and

will do so ultill you
prove your innocence.

We know too that you've taken our
witness, but it will avail you nothing.

Emperor you may be,
but justice is emperor over all

The fact you are not queen my dear-
is that the greatest injustice of all?

Vengeance, Tiberius! The people are
crying for it on every corner.

Rome will not rest
until you give it to them.

And neither shall I.

- Where is the woman, Martina?
- We don't know.

Then find her.

Am I to be blamed for everything?

How will you get a conviction
if you don't find her? Find her!

What other poisons do you use?
Have you tried aconite?

Aconite? What's that?

Well, the roots look
very like horseradish,

but it'll do more
than clear your head.

Oh, yes, bless you, Lady.
I know the one you mean.

You mean wolf's bane. That's what
we call it. It came from India.

Really? I never knew that.

I bet you didn't know its antidote.

Morphine?

You have made a study of it. I don't
worry too much about antidotes.

Well, you never know. Some fool of a slave
might get the bowls mixed up.

I can see you've read a lot.

It's a pity you don't get a chance
to practise. You'd be very good.

Thank you.

Tell me, what did you use
on my grandson, Germanicus?

Ah, belladonna.

Ah, that accounts for the red rash.

It always leaves that mark. I didn't
want it, but Plancina insisted.

I warned her, but she'd been told
by know-it-alls how tasteless it was.

You know what people are like.

Amateurs. But you used witchcraft
as well

Oh, I wouldn't say that.

All I did was arrange
some apparitions.

Your grandson was more superstitious
than any man living.

I frightened him to death.

If a man believes he's going to die,
he'll die a lot quicker.

How did you gain access
to that house?

You remember when Germanicus
went to Egypt,

he took Agrippina, but he left
Caligula behind as a punishment.

- What for?
- He was never out of mischief.

He hated his father.
They fought like cat and dog.

He told me how superstitious
his father was.

Well, they left him in the care
of a tutor - a Greek, whom I knew.

He took the child for walks in the city,
and he brought him to see me.

Oh, that child's a strange one.

He told me once he was born a god,

and such was the conviction with
which he said it, I believed him,

and I said I did.

It was then I suggested
that he played the death game.

I said, "A god should be able
to frighten a man to death."

And he shouted, "Tell me how
and I'll show you." So I told him.

Are you telling me that
that child poisoned his own father?

- Shocking, isn't it?
- He's not a god, he's a monster.

You try telling him.

- What's the matter?
- I don't know...

I've got a pain.

Oh, come, it's wind. That's all
I have it all the time.

If I wanted to dispose of you,
do you think I'd do it myself?

What...?
What's going to happen to me?

I don't know.
I'll do the best I can for you.

It's lucky for you that my agents
found you before my son's did.

You wouldn't be sitting here
complaining about wind.

The trial of Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso
and his wife Plancina is resumed.

We understand that the principal
witness in the charge of poisoning

has not been found.

In her absence,
the prosecution have no case,

and we request
that the charge be withdrawn.

(ROWDY OUTCRY)

Request denied.

(CHEERING)

If it please the Emperor, the wife
of Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso

has asked that her defence be
conducted separately

from her husband's,

and that she be tried
independently from him.

Why...?!
Why did you do this to me?

Don't you see what they think?

Do you want me to die?!

They?ve made up their minds.

There's nothing you nor I can say
will change them.

The Emperor has abandoned you.
He's given you up to the mob.

There's nothing on earth
can save you now.

What about you?

I'll go to Livia. She, at least,
stands by her friends.

Oh, Piso, listen to me.

There's the honour and wealth
of our family to be saved.

Our sons, our daughters,
our grandchildren - what of them?

If...

If you would take your life now...

If you take your life,
there's a chance...

a good one, that an honourable death
will preserve the family wealth.

Execution means only one thing -
destruction for all we've built.

Fall on a sword?

Is that what you want for me,
your husband?

Is that to be the end
for Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso?

No.

There is another way.
You go to Livia, yes!

Tell her I have another letter.
She'll remember the one she wrote.

It's in her name and his,
but it bears no seal

Tell her no power on earth will
prevent me reading it aloud tomorrow

unless I have assurances
of acquittal

You're bluffing.

No.

Tell her.

She'll remember.

Tell her I intend to read it aloud
in the Senate tomorrow.

Don't look at me as if
I'd told you I was pregnant!

He's got a letter,
and it's very incriminating.

He'll read it
unless we do something about it.

You wrote a letter in my name
and yours without even using the Seal?

You were away, and anyway
you don't let me use the Seal

Who's Emperor here, you or I?

I used Augustus' Seal
I had the free use of that.

I am not Augustus!

No, you're not. Otherwise this
situation would never have arisen.

I think I shall go mad.

You will drive me insane!

Will you stay out of my affairs?!

Your affairs? You wouldn't be
Emperor if it weren't for me.

What's done can be undone.
Plancina isn't the only one with letters.

I've got plenty from Augustus
saying what he thought about you,

and don't think I won't
have them circulated.

What do you want?

I don't want that letter
read in the Senate.

You'd be a fool if you allowed it.

You want my assurances
that they?ll be acquitted?

Of course I do.
They should be acquitted.

If you had any backbone,
you'd do it.

I'll tell you what I'm going to do.

It's your letter, you stick to it...

and if it's read in the House,
I'll deny all knowledge of it

and excuse you on the grounds
of mental incompetence

brought on by extreme old age.

And you can tell your friend
Plancina that there will be no deal!

What a spineless, miserable,

mean-spirited creature you are!

He won't have it.

He won't acquit your husband.

There is too much feeling
against him.

And what about me?

Well, I was a little
more successful there.

In exchange for the letter,

he will allow your husband
to take his own life

rather than face execution.

Then he will see to it
that you are spared

and that your family
and your estates do not suffer.

And if my husband refuses?

I would see to it that he doesn't
refuse if I were you.

It shouldn't be hard. Appeal to his
honour. Men find that irresistible.

But what guarantee do I have
that your son will get me acquitted?

Well, you see, I have Martina.

But he doesn't know that.

Now, his chances of convicting you
without her are remote.

On the other hand...

if that letter is read,

I shall be compelled -
very reluctantly...

to produce her.

He won't help us.
He has abandoned us.

Oh, that miserable cur!

I shall read this. The Senate will see
what sort of Emperor they have

and what sort of bitch calls herself
"Mother of the nation"!

No, wait. Piso, listen. We can't
fight them. They?re too powerful

And, anyway, there's the children
and the estates.

Is the whole family to be destroyed
because of us?

Oh, I can't believe it.
It's not right. I won't allow it.

We've lived together...

we'll die together too.

There's comfort in that,
isn't there?

You would...die with me?

Well, I couldn't live without you.

We'll leave the letter for Livia.

She'll help the family
when we've gone. I know that.

Yes, you're right.

I'm tired of it all

To have everybody against you
when all you've done is your duty.

There's no gratitude any more.

No... No honour.

To hell with Rome,
I've done with it.

How shall we do it? Open a vein?

Let them find us lying together?

Shall we let them find us
lying together?

No, they?re bluffing. They wouldn't
dare have that letter read!

Would you rather have
an executioner's sword?

It'll never come to that!

Oh, you coward!

- Well, I'm made of sterner stuff.
- Plancina.

I'll show you
how a Roman should die.

Plancina, they?re bluffing.
They?ll never have that letter read...

Yes. Piso is dead,
but Plancina goes free.

And you call that justice?

Well, it's s-s-some justice,
I suppose. Better than none.

- Oh, yes. Some justice!
- Pina, can't we let it rest?

I have sons to think about.

Their father is dead
because Tiberius hated him.

Let's not deceive ourselves.

If he hated their father,
will he love them?

I worry about my boys -
Nero, Drusus,

and dear little Caligula asleep in his bed.
What's to become of them?

It's Sejanus.

My father listens to him
and Sejanus plays on his fears.

Can anyone smell burning?

I can smell s-s-something.

Mistress! Mistress!
Caligula's set fire to the house!

It's burning. The whole
top floor is ablaze! Run!

edit and corrections by
moviesbyrizzo (incl re-sync for HD)