Dec 2, 2012

Merlin 509: With All My Heart

Well, now that we know that this is the final season of Merlin *sob*, I was doubly relieved to see this episode addressing the issue of brainwashed-Gwen so we can (hopefully) move on to more interesting things, like Arthur finding out about Merlin! Unfortunately as of this episode he still has no clue... And this would have been the perfect occasion for Arthur to HAVE to accept Merlin's sorcery as it was the only way to save Gwen! *sigh* Well, at least we got some good laughs with both aged "Emrys" and a female version, the "Dolma"! :p

Merlin as the aged Emrys (or Dragoon the Great) and in drag as the Dolma! :p

So Morgana's whole "brainwashing using mandrake root" process in the Dark Tower has an actual name! The "Teine Diaga" or "Sacred Fire", a ritual during which the mandrake root would bring unimaginable terror to the victim. At the end of it all the person's will (in this case Gwen) was no longer their own, they were slaves of the High Priestesses. Merlin goes to see the only person other than Morgana who would know about this enchantment, the Dochraid. Unfortunately she senses he is "no friend of the old religion, no friend of Morgana Pendragon" and so getting her to cooperate involves a little persuasion via Excalibur. Every curse can be broken, but this one is near impossible as it requires a very powerful sorcerer as well as the enchanted Gwen willingly entering the "Cauldron of Arianrhod" i.e. a a very cold Welsh mountain lake! (I swear I could see Angel Coulby's lips trembling in that scene!). Fortunately there's a just enough of crack in the spell to allow True Love (via Arthur and the words "with all my heart") to find a way through to the tiny bit of the real Gwen still inside.

Although I'm happy to see this storyline finally move on and come to a close, I was a bit sceptical about the manner in which Arthur found out! It's completely left to our imagination as to how Merlin got Arthur to those woods to witness Gwen's betrayal (damn that had to be like a knife through the heart for poor Arthur!). My guess is he told Arthur he'd uncovered a spy or something and wanted to show him. I seriously doubt Arthur would have believed him or gone if Merlin had even hinted at it being Gwen...

Ever since we saw Aithusa help Morgana (season 4 finale) and her dedication to the young dragon, I have been wondering what would be the outcome between the dragon's love (and obedience) to her when confronted against the will of a Dragonlord? Got my answer! Then again it wasn't as if Aithusa were defending Morgana which might be a whole different issue for the dragon... I miss Kilgarrah the Great Dragon!

For another take on this episode head on over to Billie Doux! ;o)

Elements from Arthurian Legend

The usual: Arthur, Guinevere, Merlin (good showcase for how powerful his magic is, as well as his ability to change his appearance), the Knights, Morgana as the opponent and Mordred who still appears to be dedicated to Arthur and his dreams for Camelot (to the point of using magic against Morgana!), but we've all seen the same vision as Merlin (Mordred stabbing Arthur at Camlann), so can this last?

My favourite knights of Camelot, worried about "red thrush fever"! Gwaine needs more screentime!

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