Rome with its sober Royal Shakespearean pedigree is far better than Deadwood with its Yankee wise-ass cool, yet both are revisionist. The brutality that exalts his power is stage managed, so that he plays good cop to the generic Roman bad cop in pursuit of imperial grandeur. Yet somehow both remain at the centre of the action by the scriptwriters' artifice. Having both a culture and language barrier, it looked like these two were doomed at first. I'm just really guessing on this last part, though.