Merlin Watch Along – S01E13: Le Morte d’Arthur

And here it finally is, the last episode of the first season! I loved it!


The last episode of the first season. The last episode. You know you’re in for a treat. An episode where Arthur almost dies and Merlin has to take immense risks. We see Uther as we’ve never seen him before – heartbroken. Morgana’s dreams are becoming worse. Everything is put on the line.

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Uther carrying the deadly wounded Arthur

The Questing Beasts bites Arthur and he falls into a coma. The only thing that can save him is the Old Religion, and Kilgharrah – the Great Dragon – tells Merlin that he has to go to the Isle of the Blessed, a stronghold of the Old Religion. Gaius however, warns Merlin of the price he will have to pay. A life for a life.

GAIUS: It is not that simple! The High Priests have the power to mirror life and death, but there will be a price to pay. They will demand a life in return. Merlin, please, I beg of you.

MERLIN: I’m sorry, Gaius. Whatever the price is, I will pay it gladly.

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At the Isle of the Blessed Merlin meets Nimueh, a High Priestess of the Old Religion and a bargain is struck. Arthur will live in exchange for a life. Merlin returns to Camelot and Arthur is saved. In the joy of everything Merlin and Gaius feel happy but sad. The evening turns to night and Camelot falls asleep.

I remember the first time I saw this, how scared I was even though I new there were four more seasons to go. How could this be changed? Then you see the cloaked figure walking towards the castle. I was so scared! Is it death visiting?

The morning however holds an awful surprise. I wouldn’t have known who it was lying there on the chamber floor unless they’d told me. She was unrecognisable due to the diseases. Merlin’s mother was the life Merlin had traded.

I understand Merlin’s anger completely. He thought he’d made it clear, his was the life to be traded. To then see Gaius sacrifice himself and leave for the Isle of the Blessed to give up his life so Merlin won’t have to breaks your heart.

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Merlin and Gaius

I hated Nimueh when Merlin arrives at the Isle of the Blessed. How could she chose who to kill like that? Merlin confronts her. And what a confrontation! The special effects! So epic! (Hear my irony.) But it is a beautiful ending to the first season.

Merlin never was the big special effects king, it is the stories that make this TV-series what it is. Hope to see you soon with the beginning of season 2.



Season 1

E01 | E02 | E03 | E04 | E05 | E06 | E07 | E08 | E09 | E10 | E11 | E12


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