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I've been watching Merlin since the start, and I've just finished
watching the third episode of the 13 part series, made by BBC Wales.
It's absolutely brilliant and it's made Saturday family viewing that
extra bit special. The third episode has been the best so far, and I
can't wait to see more of this excellent show.
Regardless of the dissatisfied moaners and complainers on IMDb, this is by far one of the best British family shows the BBC has produced to date. It's that good.
Episode 4 looks even better and I have to wait another week to see it. I definitely recommend Merlin to everyone
More please! 10 Stars from me! Well Done BBC.
Okay, I feel like you have to judge this show with a grain of salt.
I've actually found it very enjoyable and oddly addictive, though that
doesn't mean I think it's good. Yes, there are plot holes, character
inconsistencies, cheesy dialogue, etc., but I think because it doesn't
take itself too seriously (like, for example, Robin Hood was prone to
do) it can get away with most of these things. There are moments of
genuine comedy that I really appreciate, and the rest of the time I
spend giggling at the aforementioned flaws. I think the cast is quite
good as well: Colin Morgan is charmingly dorky as the title character;
Anthony Head milks a surprising amount of emotion from a ridiculously
poorly written character; and the rest (except perhaps for Katie
McGrath, who can be a little too emotional) imbue their roles with
genuine humanity. I especially like the growing relationship between
Merlin and Arthur-- the way the show is written, Merlin's only reason
for helping Arthur is that 'it's his destiny,' and Arthur has no real
reason at all to help Merlin, and yet you definitely feel that they are
starting to care for each other.
So, yeah, it's no television masterpiece, but it is fun to watch, and sometimes that's all you need.
First of all, if you are a really big fan of the Arthurian legend, stay
away from this one. Even I, with my superficial knowledge regarding
those ancient stories, could tell that this show takes quite a few
'creative liberties'. This said, it is really a rather good show. The
sets and costumes are nice (though way out of time for the historic
era), the storyline is interesting with a good mixture of humor and
suspense salted with some adequate special effects. After just three
shows in the series it is hard to judge how much depth the main
characters will be able to develop, but they are all so.....likable (My
favorite being the young Arthur). There are probably better ways to
spend your Saturday evenings, but if you're in front of the tube
anyway, you can certainly pick worse.
I just finished watching the ninth episode. It is hard to believe, but what appeared to be another shallow if decently made series, turned into a respectable drama show. The humor from the first three shows is still there, but as the story unfolds so do the main characters, gaining depth and subtleties and opening interesting plot opportunities.
Die hard fans of the legends will still not like it, as much of the underlying mystery gets a complete work-over (and the presence of a dragon sure doesn't help there), but as a stand-alone show, it certainly got me hooked :)
If you haven't been able to see it, because you're not from the UK and have no access to internet sources: This is definitely worth waiting for!
EDIT2 (a few years later):
Five seasons and a couple of years later I can still say that it's been a good show. Even though it eventually fed off the chemistry between the main protagonists and was weakened by the sub-par acting of what was supposed to be the main villain and antagonist, it holds its own as a work of entertainment. Good quality family entertainment!
Folloing on in the BBC's rich vein of mythical/historical adventures, in Merlin we have another entertaining, fast paced, family thriller sure to please countless people of all ages and backgrounds. Merlin follows a simple but effective structure often found in its genre, with Merlin as the unsung hero often struggling to keep his magical talents and work secret, Arthur the kings' son who often appears unfriendly and arrogant but shines and shifts when called to make tough decisions, and a slightly evil king whos' path of unfortunate events has ultimately led to his personality and biased hatred of magic. Add to the mix some romantic plot lines that never quite seem to materialize and the constant fret of fiends and enemies to the kingdom, occasionally intertwined with some harsh prophecy and the result is a 5 star exciting, fun adventure.
I believe people get to carried away with "traditional" outlook on the
Merlin. I actually enjoy a fresh modern twist to the whole affair. I do
acknowledge the one part of the "hippogryf", but even my youngest
daughter did point out they took the time to at least slightly alter
As for the dragon, I totally enjoy it. I do realize I have a fascination with them, so seeing one talk with a British accent as most dragons do, (unless it is Sir Sean Connery, then it would be Scottish..LOL) is entertaining for me.
Anything we watch on the television is for entertainment, if you don't enjoy it, then I suggest people not watch it then. I do believe it a refreshing change for t.v., but in America the shows are extremely mundane and lack interest for me anymore.
I tend to watch BBC for my better entertainment viewing.
Keep up the good work Merlin.
Everyone associated with this magnificent production deserve awards -
the series is simply superb entertainment on every level. The cast is
excellent - although when it started one wanted to see the traditional
story of Arthur and Excalibur and Lancelot unfold, the sheer chemistry
of the current cast are so enjoyable, that I now dread the demise of
King Uther, as Anthony Head is absolutely compelling in this role - by
far the best thing I've ever seen him do. Merlin, Arthur, even Richard
Wilson as Gaius against all the odds, are all brilliantly cast and
In many ways this reminds me of the unexpectedly addictive power of the original Star Trek series when it first appeared - only this is far better acted, far better cast, and far better written.
In my opinion one of the very best new things to hit British TV screens for many many years.
This series focuses on the young Merlin just arriving to Camelot. Who
soon finds out magic is outlawed and nothing is ever easy.
Although it has it's tacky moments, the series is good clean fun that everyone can enjoy. I first saw it while traveling on the BBC, since the show does not air on American t.v. Colin Morgan is charming and maintains a steady character who is easy to like. Critics claim the series isn't accurate. I would like to remind them Camelot is a myth.
Anthony Head makes a very believable Uther Pendragon, a character you will love and loath. While any man would fall head over heels for the lovely Katie Mcgrath as Morgana. I was hooked from the first show and actually like it better than Dr. Who. The C.G.I. looks a little under funded at times, although the sets are extremely well done. Merlin is worth watching and deserves recognition on the prime time lot. I have been waiting for a good fantasy series like this for a long time.
There are many similarities between Dr Who and Merlin in terms of the
way they are written. Like Dr Who Merlin features likable characters,
moments of comedy and a little bit of tension that kids and grown ups
can both enjoy.
There is good chemistry between the main characters. Good sets, decent special effects and each show works well on its own and as part of a series.
Don't pick too many holes in the factual details though. There are many ethnic groups in Uther's court, which probably wasn't truly representative of the population of England at that time in history. But hey, magic doesn't really exist so why not make a new TV show that has its auditions open to any actor regardless of ethnic background.
I think Merlin will run for at least another series. It would be a shame if it didn't continue. Whatever the future holds for the show the excellent Colin Morgan has a bright career ahead of him.
I would love to see more than one season devoted to this masterpiece of a TV series. Each episode gets better and better. It's obvious the writing is great and the scripts are masterpieces. Keep up the great work. Certainly looking forward to the next episode where Lancelot is brought in to the storyline. Great cast too. I too note Merlin and Arthur are becoming closer to each other on a friendship basis. The show has a lot of good emotion in it. Good action and that right touch of keeping you on the edge, like what is going to happen next. I really like that. Just like Robin Hood, keeps you on the edge. Another great television series.
I viewed this new series from NBC last night (June 21st, 2009) when the
first two episodes of the series were aired during prime time. All I
can say about it is "Go NBC!" It was truly a pleasure to watch.
Seemingly created in the vain of "Hercules", "Xena", "Robin Hood" and "Beastmaster", this show takes it's own spin on the Arthurian legend by rewriting the tale to make it a tad more soap opera-ish. While it is tragic to the Arthur legend, it's really enjoyable if you just let yourself go and watch it for the entertainment value.
There is a bit of violence, and I can perhaps see a few adult situations coming up in the future, but overall I would say that this show is very suitable for the family to sit down and watch...something rare in this day and age.
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