Also I guess sometimes people think certain episodes or chapters of stories are 'filler', not that important. I don't believe in that 'filler'. I think if it's included there's a purpose, even if it is a silly funny one, there's a reason for scenes to be there.
Princess Mithian (sp?): I liked her a lot. She came in as the cliche princess and then with each scene she surprised me. She was very interesting, caring, and I just liked her a lot. I would not have minded seeing her more. Of course I love A/G, but I was sad that she had to leave hurt. I enjoyed her scenes and I don't think the story was a throwaway.
Morgana: I guess I'm not surprised by anything she does anymore. She's just very cold now. Her confrontation with Gwen was kind of weird, but then I guess it was meant to be.
Helios: Uh, I hate that he's out to destroy Camelot, but I really liked him as an interesting character. He was actually kind of decent with Gwen. I think there's another side to him that Gwen brought out and it's unfortunate if he (which I'm assuming he was) was brought in just to be the bad guy. The actor played him well. Yes I know Helios was no angel and uh, Gwen was right to be wary of him, but he wasn't as monsterish as he could have been either. So it was nice to not have him totally a one sided plastic villain, like unfortunately Morgana feels like a lot.
He was mostly just so great to watch in this episode. I loved his interaction with the princess. You could see him battling his reactions to her after she kindly confronted him. I think he truly liked her, but he loves Gwen as one of his dearest friends. And he really showed how much that friendship means to him in this episode. It was funny when he kept trying to make Arthur look bad to the princess and it always backfired. I loved especially the face he made when she burped too. I loved how he told Arthur he still loved Gwen. That was such a strong moment of friendship towards both of them really.
When he saw Gwen as the deer that was so emotional. His face in that scene, it was just so heartbreaking and anguishing to watch. Then when Arthur found the ring and looked up at Merlin, oh my gosh. It was so hard to watch the hunt go on and Merlin just watch, but what could he do, right? It drives me crazy now sometimes how far Merlin is taking things, how many secrets there are, as he keeps the magic hidden. But here, I truly felt for him. Then I loved how Merlin went back to Gwen and helped her. Did he heal her by the way? All those times Arthur was hurt I remember he couldn't heal him. Did he heal Gwen? Or was the wound just not that bad? Anyway, his scene with Gwen was just sweet. I loved that Merlin wanted to take her back and just forget all about the banishment. He didn't care. He wanted her to return. Lovely.
Most of the speculation seemed to me to make it look like Gwen was going to be weak in this episode. She was of course far from it, surviving in wild fierce way only Gwen can. I love how that parallels Arthur often. She's very tough and shows so much wisdom too. When forced to make it on her own she can do it. Her scenes with Helios were interesting becaus only Gwen could get a like that to actually be...sort of kind really. Sure he wanted her, but I think a bit of him genuinely appreciated her too. And that's just Gwen, the kinds of values she brings out in people which will serve her so well when she is queen.
Watching her flee from Helios's men, wow. I was just cheering her on. And then with Morgana, I loved her wariness and that she was still determined to warn the kindom she loves and the man she loves, Camelot and Arthur. Of course her scene with Merlin was just wonderful. I felt so sad when she said she couldn't go back. She's still very hurt inside and feels bad about what happened, but she's not broken. You know? That's what I loved. Gwen the fighter is still there. And it will serve her well for these upcoming episodes.
The reunion that didn't happen: Good. I didn't want it to happen in one episode honestly. There was too much in this one to bring them back together. It would have been a footnote at the end. And the timing just felt wrong after Arthur actually announced he was going to marry a princess. I love Arthur and Guinevere. I want them together, but I can wait for it too. And I think the most important thing happened in this episode to make it more worthwhile. Arthur admitted that even with how he doesn't know about the spell yet, he loves her, and wishes to be back with her.
I need to be honest. I respect everyone's opinion, but I'm not agreeing with a prevalent one it seems, that Arthur is selfish and hasn't grown enough as king, etc. And that this just makes him terrible or whatever. He is still true to character. When we first met Arthur he was bullying his servant and then rude to Merlin. He's still rude to Merlin, but he gets it vice versa often and he puts up with it. He's king. He really doesn't need to put up with it, but he does because he likes Merlin genuinely and trusts his advice. I know he doesn't always want it, but when things are so answerless to him, he almost always goes to Merlin.
Do I love that he banished Gwen? No. Do I understand some of why he did it? Yes. Medieval time, his father would have had her executed. Keeping her in the kingdom might have been worse for her. Sending her away, as brutal as it may have seemed, was probably the most decent thing to do for medieval time.
And I think Arthur also did it partly for selfish reasons. I think with how much pain he was in, he couldn't stand to be around her anymore. It's not the nicest thing to do, but it perplexes me that he's put down so much for it. This is the exact same Arthur who teases his servant, etc. Yes, he's becoming king and that means he has to get wiser, but has anyone wondered if all of this is on purpose? The show meant for this story to be told this way.
The King Arthur of legend I guess was supposed to have been a great honorable king. But the show has taken both Arthur and Merlin and fleshed them out. Merlin, the grand wizard, is a sorcerer in hiding who has yet to fully understand his magic and to let it loose. He battles with doing good magic versus bad. Arthur is a selfish boy at times who is learning from the people around him that if he is to be a grand king, he cannot do it alone. He needs to keep showing compassion and learn who the true people he can trust, are. He has just as much a long way to go in becoming the king of legend as Merlin does to become the wizard of legend. This is them with flaws and I'm happy for it. I don't want Arthur to automatically become some grand king. I want to see him flub. I'm okay with that he was in pain about Gwen, but didn't bring her back right away. I understand he's just come to this place where he's admitted he's in love with her, but he doesn't yet search for her. I get that he's tangled in his emotions.
I truly get and like what this show is giving us. I believe they never wanted to give us perfect characters who always do the right thing. This is their road to the greatness they will achieve. They're not there yet, none of them really.
So Arthur, I did like in this episode a lot. I was fine when he was kind of flirting with the princess, albeit very akwardly, lol. It was like a shield was over his face during the whole episode. Recall that he told Merlin two episodes back that he could forgive Guinevere, but now he doesn't want to talk about her. He's gone past sadness, past numbness, and turned it into anger that forgets everything good he had with her. So he pursued the princess until he found Gwen's ring and then the shield came off.
That was one of the most poignant moments this show has ever had when he found her ring. Arthur's face, when he looked up at Merlin, just helpless really, and called off the hunt, that scene had so much in it. And then later when Merlin came to his room and Arthur was so lost, back deep into love that pained him, and he asked Merlin for advice, their friendship truly came out. Notice how when Merlin leaves, giving Arthur the answer that he needs to hear, not necessarily wants to hear, he quietly, respectfully thanks him. Yes he dismissed him first. But that is Arthur. He is royalty through and through. He gives order and commands because he learned it so firmly at his father's hand, but the more time goes on, the more her shows his more sensitive side. He trusts the people who he probably will realize one day, he should have listened to most in the first place.
So now Arthur has admitted he still loves Gwen, wants Gwen. And yes he could have gone looking for her, but I don't think Arthur is at that place yet. He maybe even doubts she'd want to come back after what he did.
And I think that's great storytelling. It's not perfect, but I never wanted it to be. This show is less about the lengends deep down I think. It's more about who these people are beyond those legends, how they came to be those legends. This show opens them up to be multi dimensional. And I think that's why even with all the inconsistencies this show, like any other show, might sometimes have, I still want to watch it. AndI have a soft place for every character.
Looking forward to the next ep, hope you are too!! Hugs around. :)