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Does 'El Cid' Season 2 Live Up To Season 1's Legend On Amazon Prime?

El Cid The Legend of El Cid Jaime Lorente Ruy The Cid Amazon
Amazon

“El Cid,” also known as “The Legend of El Cid” on Amazon Prime Video, has returned for Season 2, and what a season it is. Following an unexpectedly satisfying freshman outing, “El Cid” headed into its sophomore run with something Season 1 did not – high expectations. So, does the follow-up season live up to them? 

Like its predecessor, Season 2 comprises five episodes. All of which strike at the very heart of the legend and the man known as “The Master.” As you would hope, “El Cid” Season 2 picks up not far into the future from Season 1’s startling ending. However, in an even more surprising move, Ruy (Jaime Lorente) is not in much of any hot water surrounding the assassination of Count Flaín.

While Orduño (Pablo Álvarez) still has suspicions about Ruy’s involvement with his father’s demise, it has had no impact on Ruy’s continued rise. As “El Cid” Season 2 progresses, Ruy’s loyalty to Sancho (Francisco Ortiz) gets tested as Sancho takes his inherited lands. There is one problem, though. None of Ferdinand’s children are contented with the arrangement. 

So, it is not long before the siblings’ tension reaches its boiling point. “El Cid” thrives on the family turmoil as it spills over into suspenseful storytelling that each episode of Season 2 progresses with finesse. The battle between Urraca (Alicia Sanz), Alfonso (Jaime Olías), and Sancho is one of psychological and physical acumen, and it shows. 

In Season 2, the siblings find themselves at peace before an inevitable power struggle ensues. As you probably suspected, Sancho is not happy with the arrangement. Meanwhile, Urraca claims to want herself and her siblings to respect their father’s wishes. Of course, her actions tell another story. In many ways, due to this storyline and more, “El Cid” delivers on the stories promised and never produced by “Game of Thrones.” Sadly, family turmoil got lost in translation during later seasons.

One of the more thrilling aspects of Season 2 is how “El Cid” shows hints and glimpses into the dynamic between Ruy and Urraca. It is not the relationship you might have expected after watching Season 1 unfold, and that is a pleasant surprise. In addition, Urraca as a whole gets better developed in Season 2 as she breaks out of the single-focused shell viewers saw last time. 

Alicia Sanz again makes her case as a star-to-watch, and “El Cid” gives her a worthy showcase that shows the jagged little edges that comprise Urraca in all of her oft-times acidic yet affable complexity. Sanz has an undoubted future, as she demonstrates in Season 2 when she leans into Urraca’s quieter corners with such conviction. Season 2 also gives Jaime Lorente more to dig into as Ruy matures from an ambitious and occasionally immature legend in the making. 

Hot on the heels of “Money Heist” readying for its final season, Lorente’s Denver is still fresh in the minds of certain viewers (this one included). As the brash and bold Denver on the smash-hit series, Lorente has left an impression. So, it is fun to see him dial that energy back, breaking the mold of such a distinctive character to play Ruy without ever reminding viewers of Denver. 

All told, “El Cid” is excellently acted and produced and the timing of the relatively brief 5 episode seasons has worked for the series. It leaves viewers wanting more while also playing like a long movie. “El Cid” allows itself to breathe without ever losing the sense of action and intrigue that powers it. Season 3 cannot come soon enough!

For now, you can watch Season 1 and Season 2 of “El Cid” on Amazon Prime Video. The series is streaming there alongside some other worthy historical series.

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