Series 2 of Atlantis shifts to a single narrative but effectively so, meaning it’s a shame that this was to be the final one
“Who is she to him?”
I was surprised at how much I ended up enjoying the first series of Atlantis so naturally, expectations were raised for Series 2, even knowing that the show was cancelled and so this was also the last season. And what I found impressive was that it managed to be good in a different way this time around.
The first series balanced a multiplicity of storylines, teasing all sorts of threads that nodded to Greek mythology whilst also building a narrative for the show in and of itself. It was a mix that really worked for me, so the move to a single thrusting narrative here – Pasiphae’s relentless push for the throne of Atlantis – was a bit of a change.
But Atlantis carries it well, moving its chess pieces around well so most everyone is shifted from their comfort place. Deposed queen Ariadne benefits most here, and Sarah Parish as full-on warrior queen is great, especially backed by Amy Manson’s Medea and the delicious Peter de Jersey as Goran.
It’s a bit of a shame that we don’t get quite as much of the mythology side – Orpheus and Eurydice are a bit wasted, Anya Taylor-Joy as Cassandra doesn’t quite get enough to do and the hints that Medea is Jason’s Medea is left frustratingly unexplored. Plus the nod to the Argonauts-to-come also can’t help but leave one disappointed.
Killing off key characters up shock value (though they would be mainly female…), leaning into Pythagoras being a homo with Icarus is fun (though a little late in the day for the fans), and it’s all just highly watchable. We may never know how this Atlantis would have been sunk dramatically but sunk as it was by the BBC, it’s a strong couple of series.