Was Nero really that bad? Sure, he killed his mother and two of his wives, but he didn’t actually fiddle while Rome burned. Some historians believe that he deserves a rebrand; they argue that the boy emperor introduced important reforms, designed beautiful public spaces and promoted culture, but that his name was blackened through the animosity of early biographers. No one denies his brutality; barbarity was in the Roman Emperor’s job description. Leaders like Augustus were simply better at spin.