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Rewind and Repeat: Old Merlin Giddy Ups Arthur on Merlin “The Wicked Day” 

Photo Credit: BBC

In the midst of a deadly serious episode it was nice to see few moments of genuine humor. I don’t know about you but I love it when Old Merlin makes an appearance. He’s such a crotchety old man who says and does outrageous things. It’s so much fun to see Colin Morgan‘s Merlin do and say whatever he wants and Bradley James‘ Arthur be at such a loss for words. In “The Wicked Day,” Arthur has sought out the old sorcerer to help a dying King Uther. Although he knows Uther would never approve of using magic to help save his life Arthur is desperate and willing to try anything. Fearing that his father will slip away at any moment, Arthur urges the sorcerer to walk faster. But this Merlin isn’t Arthur’s servant and can’t be trusted to hold his tongue in check. When the sorcerer suggests Arthur carry him and Arthur takes him on his back, it’s a hilarious moment. But when Old Merlin kicks Arthur like he’d kick his horse, it’s a moment you have to keep watching over and over again. And I did.

In fact, I love every scene Old Merlin and Arthur are in. I’m sure it’s so refreshing for Merlin to be able to say whatever he wants to Arthur without the fear of reprisal. I’m also sure some of his words are falling on deaf ears because Arthur thinks the sorcerer is strange, but it’s nice that he’s getting his thoughts out there. When Arthur says he’ll give the old sorcerer anything he asks for – land, gold, anything – I love Old Merlin’s response:

“All I have ever wanted is that people like me can live in peace. That those who practice magic are accepted rather than hunted. That is all I ask. That is the price for your father’s life.”

I love the words and the way Old Merlin said them. And then, of course, things quickly go back to being contentious between them.

I can’t get enough of these two – either as Merlin and Arthur or as the old sorcerer and Arthur. I hope Arthur’s grief doesn’t keep these two friends from getting into mischief sometime soon. 

Merlin airs Fridays as 10/9c on Syfy.

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