When we leftÂ MerlinÂ last year, Arthur had finally married Gweneviere and returned to the throne in Camelot.Â But the peace and happiness of the realm is only fleeting, as Lady Morgana has escaped and will not rest until she destroys Arthur and everything heâ€™s built.
The fifth and, sadly, final season ofÂ MerlinÂ opens with a crisis: Sir Gwaine and his men are missing. It does not take long for suspicion to rightly fall upon Morgana. Arthur gathers his knights to the Round Table and they resolve to set out on a rescue mission to Ismere, the cold, dark land where Morgana has made her stronghold.
Everything about Morgana has turned dark. Thankfully, she has left her forest cave permanently behind.Â Now, she reigns from a black castle and sits on a throne in an empty room covered in cobwebs. The visual contrast between her throne and Arthurâ€™s shows how far she has fallen. As Queen Annis tells Arthur, Morgana has been â€œdevoured by hate.â€ Nevertheless, I still have hope that there will be at least a moment when the old Morgana resurfaces. I always found it troubling that someone who started out good and who viewers became emotionally invested in as the friend to Arthur and protector of Gwen, could quickly turn so evil. She may be magical, but there has to still be a fragment of humanity left in her.
Morgana is obsessed with finding Arthurâ€™s bane â€“ the thing that will lead to his downfall. Only Merlin and the viewers know that Arthur will be struck down by Mordred, the druid boy we last saw as a child. I have always assumed that Mordred is Arthurâ€™s bane. That may be true superficially, but could it be something more?Â Arthur is often his own worst enemy due to his sense of loyalty and morality. In this episode, he knows that he is putting his life at risk, but says he would rather die trying to rescue his men than leave them in Morganaâ€™s clutches. Does that mean Arthur is his own bane? Is it possible that Merlin is Arthurâ€™s bane?Â Merlin has never wavered from his mission to protect Arthur. But, his myopic view keeps him from seeing the bigger picture.Â Yes, Arthur may be in danger and may lose his life, but there are some things worth dying for. Itâ€™s going to be exciting to unravel the mystery this season.
As Morgana forces Gwaine and his knights to toil in a large mine beneath her castle, Arthur and his men advance from the west in an attempt to surprise Morgana. They reach a village where everyone has been killed.Â That is, they think everyone has been killed.Â Merlin hears someone calling, â€œEmrys.â€ It is a druid seer, at whose death images from Arthurâ€™s final battle are revealed. Merlin sees the cold, evil face of the man who will strike down Arthur.Â Merlin does not yet realize that man is Mordred.
Panicked by the vision, Merlin calls on the Great Dragon. The dragon encourages Merlin to keep protecting Arthur and Camelot.Â The dragon has been a confidant of Merlinâ€™s since the first season, and the evolution of their relationship from antagonistic to a real friendship has been a high point of the series. When the Great Dragon previously rescued Merlin from Morgause, it solidified that he is on Merlinâ€™s side. As one of only two dragons left, the Great Dragon grounds the show in the world of medieval fantasy. Hopefully, he will make many more appearances throughout the season.Â The writers better not even think about killing him.
Unfortunately, for Arthur and Merlin, things never go smoothly. Their route is divulged to Ruadan by Gwenâ€™s maid, Sefa, who is actually his daughter. Ruadan tells Morgana who sets out to capture Arthur. Gwen learns of the betrayal and deduces Sefaâ€™s involvement. In a surprisingly harsh turn, Gwen finds Sefa guilty of treason and sentences her to death. Her hasty decision is surprising, especially since Gwen was once on the receiving end of such a pronouncement by Uther Pendragon. She clearly reacted out of anger, but she is going to need to rectify the situation in upcoming episodes. Sefa acted out of love for her father and seemed reticent to place Camelot in harmâ€™s way â€“ killing her would be too extreme.
Arthurâ€™s and Merlinâ€™s escape from Morganaâ€™s forces is short-lived. The two are captured by wild men who plan to sell Arthur to Morgana. As Merlin readies himself to fight off the attackers, he is stopped cold by the approach of Mordred from the woods. Arthur does not recognize Mordred, but Merlin does. Like with Morgana, there seems to be a spark of humanity somewhere inside Mordred. However, Merlin is so focused on saving Arthur that he doesnâ€™t realize that he should focus on bringing Mordred and Morgana out of the darkness.
It will be intriguing to see Morganaâ€™s interactions with Mordred, and how Arthur and Merlin are going to escape this time. Tune in to the next episode Friday, January 11 at 10/9c on Syfy.
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.
Catching Up with Ted Lasso and Previewing Season 2
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] The not so dirty little secret about how I approach a new series is that I sometimes make a call based on the headspace I’m in at the time. It’s been a minute since I’ve picked up a show after the first season and then binge…
Interview: Henri Esteve on Grown-ish Season 3
An interview with Henri Esteve, who plays Javi on Freeform’s Grown-ish. He talks about his season three experience.
For All Mankind Season 2: Talking with Wrenn Schmidt, Krys Marshall, Jodi Balfour, and Sonya Walger [Exclusive]
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] One of the hooks of For All Mankind is that it’s very much a story about the women of NASA. In Season 2, we explore the journeys of the women in the program, either through their own service or through their family affiliations. Four of those…
Rosy McEwen Talks The Alienist: Angel of Darkness Season Finale [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers for the season finale episodes.] How’s everyone after that finale? I will freely admit I got a little misty in episode eight as John told Sara why he loved her, and later that he wanted her despite what he might forfeit, and then at the end when he…
Rosy McEwen Talks The Alienist: Angel of Darkness [Exclusive]
Hands down, one of the best surprises of The Alienist: Angel of Darkness is that the serial killer this season has been front and center alongside the cast as a fully-formed character. We’ve watched Libby Hatch devolve from a prim, mild-mannered nurse to a woman in a rage hell-bent on…
The Alienist: Angel of Darkness Relationship Recap: John and Sara
[Warning: Spoilers for “Belly of the Beast” and “Memento Mori”] If you’ve read me for a while (thank you!), you know two things — I lean way, way in on the characters I adore and I loathe love geometry arcs. So, I’m torn about where we are and where we…
Louriza Tronco Talks The Order Season 2 [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers ahead for Season 2.] The Order’s second season is dark yet delightful entertainment on many levels, and one of its biggest sources of joy and snark is the sassy Gabrielle Dupres. Last season, she was assertive and deadly and fairly annoyed with the world. This season, she’s been…
Previewing Netflix’s Virgin River
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] Full disclosure: I have a Netflix account for my Mom, but I’m not a regular viewer. If I get a heads up on something, I’ll go look for it, but I don’t have a wander across its offerings, which, as I understand it, is how most…
Final Thoughts From the Killjoys Team [Exclusive]
This is the day of the week I’d normally hit you up with a Killjoys preview, but now that we’ve put the series to bed and released Team Awesome Force into the wild, I have one more treat for you–some final thoughts excerpted from my conversations with the Killjoys folks….
Michelle Lovretta Talks Wrapping Up Killjoys [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers for the series finale.] To quote Miss Jackson, “That’s the end?” Yes, friends, it is. And like I promised you, everything would be, was, and is alright. I went to the Killjoys source, series creator Michelle Lovretta, who wrote the last episode, to break down that delicious finale….
What They Said: Three Revealing Conversations from Survivor’s Remorse “Closure”
WARNING: Spoilers for Survivor’s Remorse “Closure” The latest episode of Starz’s Survivor’s Remorse featured conversations that showed characters really digging deep into their thoughts, emotions and motivations.
Two Takes: The Catch “The Knock-Off”
Who can you trust? If this episode of The Catch was any indication, the answer is just about nobody. Betrayal was running rampant as Felicity (Shivani Ghai) arose from the dead to seduce-con Margot, Gretchen (Maria Thayer, Gotham, The Mindy Project) played gold-hearted Alice 2.0 before swindling Ethan, Tessa jumped…
What They Said: Top 3 Quotable Moments from Preacher “El Valero”
Both Quincannon and Jesse refuse to give up on what they each think is rightfully theirs. While Jesse is struggling to face the consequences of his actions, Quincannon has laid his past demons to rest and is hellbent on moving forward and putting Annville on the map again. Despite a…
What They Said: Favorite Quotes from Supergirl “Worlds Finest”
Oh, Supergirl. That ending was cold. But I can’t hate on you because the latest episode has quickly become one of my favorites.
What They Said: Top 4 Quotable Moments from Black Sails “XXIII”
The dialogue in “XXIII” is phenomenal. It’s always a fun ride when Black Sails carries its viewers along without giving them the chance to catch their breath. When an episode moves at this unforgiving pace, there is no chance for a breather nor is there a respite from the information…
What Lucifer Said: Favorite quotes from Supernatural “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”
Supernatural episodes are almost always funny but thanks to the dialogue and a certain man speaking said dialogue, I laughed a lot during “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” You know, when I wasn’t busy fearing for Sam’s life or wondering what in the world was going on with Dean and…
What They Said: The Flash, “Legends Of Today” and Arrow, “Legends Of Yesterday”
Two nights of Arrow +Â The Flash = what more could we ask for?! I don’t know what it is about blending these shows, but I canâ€™t help but feel that every time they come together, they somehow become greater than the sum of their parts. And thatâ€™s saying a lot…
What they Said: Top 4 Quotable Moments from Graceland “Little Bo Bleep”
Shoot outs. Fake outs. And long-awaited revelations. “Little Bo Bleep” was a jam-packed episode that wrapped up some loose ends and totally frayed others. Â It finally gave us one Sarkissian in jail and pulled back the curtain on Briggs’ master plan, but it also set up Jakes for a world…
What They Said: Favorite Quotes from Poldark “Part 4”
â€œWhat have I told you, I don’t require my wife to crochet and sip tea, but I do require her to remember she’s not a beast of burden.â€ No, Iâ€™m not talking about The Rolling Stones! I have to admit though, just for a second, the lyrics popped into my…
3 Moments of Goodness from Brooklyn Nine-Nine “Johnny and Dora”
The most satisfying part of this season’s finale has to the Jake and Amy kiss. Well, they kiss three times but the last one is the best one — and it means something. The Charles and Rosa dynamic was also great. I love how she’s convinced he doesn’t know anything…