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Barbarians II

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A s if the Huns, Goths, Vikings, and Mongols of three years ago weren’t enough, the History Channel returns with four more hours of rape and pillage, this time featuring the Vandals (Gaiseric and his bloodthirsty boy-child Huneric, from Germany on to Gaul, Spain, North Africa, and Rome), the Saxons (Edwin versus Aethelfrith, Britain and the battle-ax), the Franks (Merovius and Clovis lead to Charlemagne), and the Lombards (Rome finally falls to Alboin, who forces others to drink from skulls). I’m not saying this is scholarship at its most scrupulous, but it’s certainly preferable to, say, the next installment of Marvel Comics, in which we might expect Mary Jane to die of cancer caused by Spider-Man’s radioactive sperm.

Barbarians II
The History Channel, March 5 and 6, 8 p.m.; March 7, 8 p.m. and 9 p.m.


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