A few lovely reviews for the show and Tom's performance have been shared online. First from the Geek Exchange who feel the show has something for everyone. Newsday and LFM also praised the show.
TV is where Goyer really belongs. He's got an interesting voice, big cinematic ideas and a comic-book sensibility, which TV (and viewers) covet these days. In fact, with "Demons," Goyer makes the case that Leonardo -- with his protean talents and taste for gadgets -- was really just a Renaissance Batman.
And Riley rises to the challenge of making him one. His Leo is full of antic energy, but also full of himself, plus he has Batman's keen sense of both justice and self-glorification. Newsday
Riley is instantly appealing as the show's charismatic title character, and he's supported by a strong cast. Especially notable is Blake Ritson, who plays a ruthless warrior out to take down Florence's powerful Medici family. Mercury News
Tom Riley takes a bit of getting used to as Da Vinci, but he grows on viewers (at least over the course of the first four episodes). He nicely captures that Sherlockian charismatic arrogance, which is quite entertaining when done right. LFM
A interesting interview from Florence with Tom and David S. Goyer has been shared in the Brisbane Times.
Tom Riley plays the titular hero and says that while the show is a ''guilty pleasure'', he has ''lived and breathed'' da Vinci and takes his portrayal seriously. ''I feel hugely responsible. Even though we are very adamantly creating a fantastical version of him, I wanted to be as nuanced and pay as much respect to the man as I could.''
Riley's da Vinci bursts with youthful petulance, mocking authority, smoking opium and climbing furniture to broadcast his rapid-fire theories. ''For a man who lived in a constant state of flux, who never sat still, whose mind flitted from one thing to the next, who was constantly distracted, took many commissions and didn't finish them - I felt it was important to reflect it physically,'' he says.
In Florence for the world premiere, the cast visited da Vinci's childhood home and met Italian scholars to discuss their mutual interest. ''Originally, I thought, 'This is great, there's never really been a Leonardo da Vinci in pop culture,''' Riley says. ''And he's not a Batman, he's not a Superman, so there isn't the weight of the comic-book world's expectations on me. ''What I did not predict was art historians being, of course, incredibly passionate and very, very scared that we're going to disrespect someone.''
Putting purists to one side, what might have da Vinci though of the show? ''If you could displace anyone from history into a different time period, he would probably be the most comfortable with it,'' Riley says. ''Because he could turn up and say, 'Well, of course there's a car and a bicycle - I knew it! There's a helicopter - I thought of that.' So I think, as a man who was very open to the pursuit of knowledge, open to an understanding of different things, he probably would be quite accepting of the crazy that we've gone into.''
A Film School Rejects' interview with David S. Goyer reveals that episode 2 of Da Vinci's Demons was filmed first!
Thanks to Luce in the forum for finding great photos from the MIPTV cast panel in Cannes, and to Starz PR who tweeted this photo of Tom appearing on ABC News today. No idea if the interview will be available to watch online.