4 October 2007 | Gooper
In The Tradition of Great Epics
'Rhodes' takes its place alongside 'The Last Place on Earth' and 'The Jewel in the Crown' as one of the very best British-made series sagas. It has everything: masterful performances (it's Martin Shaw's show, of course, but everyone shines), a sweeping, informative and intelligent script, a magnificent score - reminiscent of John Barry, superb locations, and a whale of a story, a true story.
The character of Cecil Rhodes is thoroughly and fulfillingly fleshed out. He is scarcely admirable, but he commands our attention for sheer audaciousness and dramatic power. The exploitation and double-crossing of the native peoples is portrayed with accuracy and grim detail, with many parallels to the American West. Rhodes was an opportunist and an empire builder in the extreme, who stopped at nothing to achieve his goals. As an epic character study, this drama really delivers as only the Brits can.
Finally, a common complaint: no DVD version exists as if yet. If more viewers discovered this series, it would quickly be known as a classic.