Before the current wave of historical drama series such as "The Borgias" and "The Tudors," this saga in a similar vein did much for the mid-1970s popularity and visibility of PBS.
In a new 35th-anniversary edition, Derek Jacobi is superb as the title emperor who had physical challenges that were blessings in a certain respect, since they kept him from the wrath of Caligula (John Hurt) ... but the path also is set for his own power to lead him astray. The cast also includes Sian Phillips, Patrick Stewart and Brian Blessed. **** (Not rated: AS, V)
Buy ''I, Claudius: The Complete Series' on DVD.