How to Survive the Roman Empire, by Pliny and Me: The Complete Series 1-3

The BBC Radio 4 Comedy Drama
Length: 3 hrs and 22 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (37 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Kieran Hodgson stars as Pliny the Younger in Hattie Naylor’s engaging drama charting the fortunes of a household in Ancient Rome.

The Emperor Domitian has informers everywhere; no-one is safe. He rules Rome with a rod of iron, and he is dangerously unstable and paranoid. In the snake pit of Imperial Rome, all Pliny the Younger wants to do is get his letters ready for publication. 

Except if he, his mother Marcella, their Greek cook Doris (who narrowly missed out on becoming the next Oracle at Delphi), and Venta, their slave with secretarial skills, have any chance of surveying, they are going to have to negotiate a political minefield, keep their eyes peeled for spies and, most of all, not do anything to annoy the Emperor. 

Easier said than done.

Cast and credits

Pliny the Younger………………..Kieran Hodgson
Venta………………………………..Nigel Barrett
Marcella……………………………Joanna Scanlan
Doris the Cook…………………Mia Soteriou
Regulus……………………….Matthew Gravelle
Lucipor…………………………Ewan Bailey
Produced by and directed for radio by Kate McAll
Written by Hattie Naylor

©2018 BBC Worldwide Ltd (P)2018 BBC Worldwide Ltd
What members say
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Highly entertaining use of Pliny the Younger

This story, drawn around the letters of Pliny the younger, is fun, interesting and a good use of Pliny's cultural context. The performance of all characters is superior in quality. Even the music is good.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

great story line

this story had so much humor the narrator's were fantastic it's hard to choose my most favorite moment there were so many

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  • Christine
  • 08-05-19

Wish it was longer

This was an excellent Series in a quiet little way. The three very charismatic lead performers will leave you wanting more. Don’t expect tonnes of comedy or huge tension, just gentle comedy and historical atmosphere.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Shez from England
  • 03-12-20

music sounded medievil not roman to distracting

to much music and special effecrs u lost the plot
very hammy and amature unfortunatly

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Rich
  • 10-15-19

Simply a great story and well performed

I was genuinely disappointed when it finished! Some great acting combined with an excellent narrative!

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Gordon
  • 05-23-19

meh 😐

dont like to write bad reviews but i was dissapionted, better used as a sleeping aid as the story and voices just drone on.
didnt enjoy

1 person found this helpful