5.08: Merlin - The Hollow Queen

ctg

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When Merlin agrees to help a young druid, Deagal, he has no choice but to leave Camelot on a dangerous mission. With the citadel distracted by the visit of the fearsome Sarrum of Amata, it seems that no one will notice his absence.


But as the sky darkens, so do Merlin's suspicions - is there more to Deagal than meets the eye? And can a man as ruthless as the Sarrum ever really be trusted? Before long, the young warlock realises he has made a terrible mistake.



That is absolutely fabulous looking dress, isn't it?
 

Perpetual Man

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Heh, ctg you mention the dress and the first thing that Mrs Perp said when she was watching the episode was "I love that dress!"

As for the episode I really enjoyed it. I loved the humour throughout; thought the over all idea and execution was well done, and I did not see that many plot holes to detract from the enjoyment. There was one - but it was only a niggle, in that Morgana clearly stated that Merlin had been scuppering her schemes again and again, and then she poisoned him and kicked him down a slope. Now surely if she has worked out he is getting in the way of her schemes, it's a lot more effective and permanent to have stabbed him. No chance of him recovering again.

It's still lightweight, but great fun and I enjoyed the episode (and liked the teaser for next week)
 

Mouse

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Well... to be honest, I didn't really notice Gwen's dress, I was too busy thinking have her breasts got bigger?!

Gwen still irritates the hell out of me, I'm not believing the evilness. It has to be a spell otherwise it doesn't work for me.

Pretty reasonable ep, really. Colin Morgan was particularly good, I thought. And yeah, I did almost blub when the wee boy died, even though as soon as Merlin used magic in front of him I knew he was doomed.

Notice the absence of Gwaine and Percy? What were they up to then, eh? Eh? ;)
 

ctg

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Hhhmmm, I finally had time to watch this and the last week episode, and I have to say my theory of Gwen being replaced with a doppelgänger is growing thin. There's just things that a mimic wouldn't know, but there are also things that only the Queen would know, like for example that Merlin has magic.

She was so willing to stay in the chamber and not do Morgana's bidding at the Dark Tower, but in this and the previous one, Gwen has been like a mirror image. But knowing how wrong I have been about all exciting angles in the past, I really doubt the producers would have embraced the mythology.

The one another thing we got in this episode was the explanation for Morgana's two year suffering in the pit. And I feel a bit saddened they had to kill of the poor king before he could had more chances to richen the surrounding landscapes. And I for one, cannot understand the geography of mythical Albinion as the armours and the weaponry the Amata's men were carrying pointed to the far east landscape. Even their skin and hair were suitable for that region.

So where does this lead us as the series are drawing to the saddened ending of Arthur being mortally wounded in the hands of Mordred?

I don't know, but it certainly doesn't leave much of room for the quest of Holy Grail, or killing of the great dragon or any of the other stuff. Then again, the producers had gone down the route where they have altered the whole thing and turned it upside down. So, I feel a bit sad that younger generation won't known much about what is really standing behind the legend.

Mouse said:
Notice the absence of Gwaine and Percy? What were they up to then, eh? Eh?
Oiling their muscles.

Mouse said:
Well... to be honest, I didn't really notice Gwen's dress, I was too busy thinking have her breasts got bigger?!
You surprise me week by week. Why you were watching her tits?
 

Overread

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There are three things that stand out to me in this episode:

1) Yes I agree why didn't Morganna just stab Merlin - or better why didn't they have a magical duel during which point both fought the other off and Merlin got his leg cut up during said fight. You get the same end result without the feeling that there was a cop out by the writer being written into a corner.

2) The geography points mentioned above and also the Dead Tower from two episodes ago - these things have really made me feel that they should have spent more time devoted to really showing us the lands and the other rulers or at least going into some detail about their backgrounds. At least then they could either reinforce the fact that this is at least taking place in England - - however with the references and general displays I've come to the feeling that they must be on Europe itself or at least on some other similarly large land body because of all the vastly contrasting areas that they visit (esp in this last season).

3) The ending shouldn't have had the other king shot or at least there should have been more activity from his supporters/troops that came with him. It almost felt like "Oh our king is dead - well that's ok lets go home". I'm sure this event might come back in future episode - but I'm left with the nagging feeling that it might end up being left just as it is now (ie not enough episodes left to devote to developing it further).




That said whilst I'm sad that we don't see as much of him. I'm glad that they've really pushed away from the "lets ask the dragon for the answer" approach. It's still a solid series and great fun to watch.
 

Dave

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1) Swords and knives have never been Morgana's way. To be fair, Merlin was dead this time. She hadn't just thrown him. Only his own knowledge and the help of Deagal (who had no reason to want Arthur and Merlin saved and to come back) managed to reverse the poison's effects.

2) As I have said before, the geography of Camelot is long past saving!

3) As it was one of their own who killed the King, and they were surrounded by Knights of Camelot, then I'm not sure what they could do. I think there would have been recriminations (unless you were actually present you wouldn't believe what had happened - it would have to be a conspiracy - and therefore a War between the two Kingdoms is very likely) but you would choose your fight - leave quietly now, then return with a much larger army.

Re: Gwen - I think there is a lot of padding and whale bone.

I'm finding the brainwashing hard to believe too. She was fawning over Arthur and gushing like that before she was turned, so she isn't acting very differently.

So, Morgana and Gwen DO know all about Merlin's magic. And Gaius does, so really it is only Arthur that is too stupid to see. Maybe Uther was right about Arthur all along.

Re: The two year suffering of Morgana in the pit - didn't we see the baby dragon only a few weeks ago? It didn't look horribly deformed and damaged by restricted growth then, but it didn't fly either.
 

Dave

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I think I did mention it in passing ;)

Shouldn't she be pregnant with the heir to the throne by now? It has been 2 years and there is plenty of romping around the bedroom going on. It isn't just an idle thought because three times this Season now they have mentioned that she will take over if Arthur doesn't return/gets bumped off. If he had an heir that just wouldn't happen and Morgana's plans would be thwarted.
 

Perpetual Man

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Traditionally Gwen was always barren/infertile, hence the no children in legend, they may well be going down that route.

Does 'The Dave made me' defence work on anything?
 

ctg

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You know I don't think there's going to be any little prince or princesses running around. They will just end it with a bang, everyone but Merlin and what's-his-name Mordred standing at the end. And then the dragon comes down from the sky to feast on shish kebab. Afterwards he'll uses Excalibur to clean to his teeth.

The reason I'm saying that is because I don't think Arthur and Gwen has been dancing horizontal mambo that much as they've been too busy to with the kingdom. Otherwise we would have had enough of hints with her belly getting bigger and bigger. But no, nothing's happening in the bedroom department.
 

Ursa major

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Does 'The Dave made me' defence work on anything?
Not really but, for some reason, I prefer it to: "I blame Ursa."


Speaking of which: perhaps the strain of turning against Arthur has driven Gwen to drink, which might explain why she's almost out of her cups.

*cough*
 
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