Saturday, 6 October 2012

Merlin Series 5, Episode 1: Arthur’s Bane Part 1

King Arthur (Bradley James)
The Round Table

The Euchnar (Josette Simon)
 Phew … !

 I THINK I’m going to have to do some SERIOUS labelling, I really am.

Just so I know who I’m talking about … !

Trust me, you wouldn’t believe how long captioning a bunch of photos can take … !

And, yes, before you ask …

I’m talking about the bunch of photos I’ve got in this post.


As any one who’s followed me for a while now can tell you, I’ve usually only got time for two series on TV, at the moment.

Dr Who has been one of them, obviously: which, frankly, is something I’ve grown up on, for most of my life.

And Merlin.

And I’m thinking the two series are a real study in contrast at the moment.


Firstly, though, let me tell you a little something about tonight’s opening episode, Arthur’s Bane: Part 1.
Morgana (Katie McGrath)

Merlin (Colin Morgan)
Arthur’s Bane: Part 1 sees our regular cast — Colin Morgan, Bradley James, Angel Coulby, Katie McGrath et al — opening this series.
Ruadan (Liam Cunningham)

Guineve (Angel Coulby)
And in this opening episode, Katie McGrath’s Morgana is joined by Liam Cunningham as Ruadan: who’s supported by fellow newcomer, Sophie Rundle as Ruadan daughter, Sefa.

With the plot of the episode, itself, following Arthur’s attempts to rescue his men from Morgana: who’s using as much slave labour as she can to find what she calls the Euchnar, or Key To All Knowledge.

Little suspecting that what she thinks is a key is actually a rather shy creature dwelling in the caves under her castle.

There’s more … 

Coming across the last survivor of a massacred druid village, Merlin is given a warning by the dying seer.

That Arthur will soon face , in battle.

Of course, by the end of this part, we find out what we’ve suspected, now, since the start of Series 1.
Sefa (Sophie Rundle)

Sir Gwaine (Eoin Macken)
That Arthur’s Bane … 

Is a now grown Mordred … 
Mordred (Alexander Vlahos)

Sir Elyan (Adetomiwa Edun)
Personally … ?

I’m thinking Merlin’s fifth series could go to all sort’s of directions.

Gaius (Richard Wilson)

Sir Leon (Rupert Young)
Now, I said about contrasts, didn’t I … ?

Yes, I did.

You see, I can’t help but compare Arthur’s Bane Part 1 with The Asylum of The Dalek:and think that both Asylum … and this year’s Dr Who isn’t comparing well.

Granted, we’ve not seen ALL of Dr Who’s seventh series, as yet.

And, granted, the Matt Smith/Steven Moffat led series is up against an established series (effectively) that’s been going with it’s current cast for five years, against New Who’s (effective) 3 year run.

Equally, we also know that Dr Who can and will keep going: against the fact the Merlin, as a series, will have to end.

Going by those original sources, Arthur gets killed by Mordred, and buried on Saint Michael’s Mount.

But on the strength of this opening episode … ?

Arthur — and Merlin — is in far healthier shape.

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