I’m heartbroken. After five seasons, BBC has canceled my favorite television show, Merlin. What am I to do?
I ask this question in all earnest. I’m not a regular t.v. watcher. There are very few shows I watch, and only one I waited with bated breath to see. There was something magical about Merlin, no pun intended. The actors had an intoxicating screen presence together. Each of them brought their characters to life, as if they were literally in your living room. I came to love all of them: Bradley James as Arthur, Colin Morgan as Merlin, Angel Goulby as Gwynevere, Katie McGrath as Morgana, Alexander Vlahos as Mordred and the incomparable Richard Wilson as Gaius. They were my friends. I loved them and hated them with equal passion. I needed them every week like an alcoholic needs booze, like a drug addict needs a fix. Now they’re not here and I’m suffering major withdrawals.
Have you ever reached the end of a great book and wept, wishing it would go on forever? Merlin was like that for me. Every week I was on a new adventure. The show toyed with my emotions. The script-writers did a good job but I was disappointed they did not stay more with the story. From what I’ve read since the final episode aired, the actors were quite miffed with BBC and the producers for reasons I’m not clear on. I do think, however, that for all their flaws, the writers knew, believed in and wrote their characters with precision, keeping in mind their audience ranged in age from 8 to 80. They never showed blood on the swords in battle. They didn’t need to. The implication was enough. They relied on the story line to carry them through and it worked well. The characters were beautiful and unforgettable. Sadly, they could no longer grow. The writers wrote them into a corner. The producers didn’t listen to those with great ideas on where to take the series. It failed to win awards when there was so much potential. In spite of its mistakes, I still loved the show, and now it’s gone.
I watched the final episodes, Part 1 on Sunday, Part 2 on Christmas Eve, and I wept, as in ‘gut-wrenching-sobs’ wept. Until the end, I didn’t know it was the final season. The last thing I’d read was that BBC was in talks for a Season 6. This blind-sided me. I will admit the ending was scripted well, yet it was so damn sad. I feel as if I lost many good friends all at once in a tragic incident, only this time the tragedy was brought on by a network. It was one of the few shows on television that was family oriented, that portrayed morals and love and values. A show that was good and wholesome. Clean. Magical.
The show always opened with the following:
In a land of myth and a time of magic, the destiny of a great kingdom rests on the shoulders of a young man. His name…Merlin.
Sadly, Merlin’s destiny rested on the shoulders of a media giant. Its ‘death’ is not one this fantasy author will easily overcome.
Good-bye, Merlin. I shall miss you.
- Fantasy TV series Merlin keeps theme of friendship through all five seasons (metronews.ca)
- Merlin has been cancelled, just when it was getting really good (guardian.co.uk)
- ‘Merlin’ Canceled After Season 5; Spin-Off Series Planned (screenrant.com)
- The Kindness of Bradley James (mariathermann.wordpress.com)