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Merlin: The Darkest Hour, Part 2

“I look at you and I wonder about myself. Could I knowingly give up my life for something?”

Well, I certainly didn't see that coming, although I really should have.

It was a given that neither Arthur or Merlin were going to die. They're the stars after all. So it was obvious that one of the other knights would have to sacrifice themselves. And going by the way they kept emphasising how Lancelot was the best of the them, it was obvious he'd be the one to make the noble sacrifice. But is he really dead? This is a fantasy show after all, so it is possible that Lancelot will return. Plus the season four trailer kind of already gave it away.

I didn't enjoy part two as much as part one. Arthur's quest just seemed to sort of plod along for 40 minutes before coming to a rather rushed, if still shocking, end. All the spookiness from Part 1 was traded in for moments of extreme silliness. Top of the list was Arthur and company's encounter with the giant gerbils, a moment so Holy Grail, I half expected it to end with the animator suffering a fatal heart attack. The runner-up prize goes to Lancelot's chit-chat with the puddle fairies, which also provided a handy quick fix solution for last week's cliff-hanger. Never underestimate the healing powers of puddle fairies.

Back at the castle, Morgana was putting forward her application for this year's Worst Assassin in the Realm Award. After she goes through all the trouble of sneaking into the castle, killing a red cloak and knocking out Gwen and her guards, she just leaves, hoping the Dorocha will do the rest for her. Look, Morgana, I know it's no fun sitting around your Cottage of Doom all day with nothing to do or anyone to appreciate how glamorously evil you look, but that's no excuse for coming up with such a half arsed scheme.

Notes and Quotes

--New Merlin drinking game. Whenever someone says 'quest', knock one back.

--Lancelot got a really nice memorial service. I wonder if all of Camelot's nameless red cloaks hope they too get such a service when they inevitably die to show how dangerous the situation is.

--How did Lancelot and Merlin catch up with Arthur and the others so quickly? They didn't take a shortcut through the caves with the giant gerbils.

--The Valley of the Fallen Kings first appeared in season three episode 'The Crystal Cave'.

Sir Gwaine: “Can you hear that?”
Sir Leon: “Bees?”
Sir Gwaine: “Food.”
Sir Leon: “Are you trying to get us killed?”
Sir Gwaine: “We're riding to our deaths anyway.”

Arthur: “Lancelot? How's Merlin?”
Sir Lancelot: “Bad news... he's still alive.”

Merlin: “What is the life of a servant, compared to that of a prince?”
Arthur: “A good servant's hard to come by.”
Merlin: “I'm not that good.”
Arthur: “True.”

Arthur: “I want to pay tribute to Sir Lancelot. We owe him a great debt. But it is not just his deed that we will never forget. It is his courage, his compassion, his unselfish heart. He was the most noble knight I will ever know. He gave his life for all of us.”

Two and a half out of four cartoon perils that were no more.
Mark Greig has been writing for Doux Reviews since 2011. More Mark Greig.


  1. Mark, if you're going to post semi-saucy pictures of Katie McGrath each week, you know I'm going to demand more reviews (or rather my hormones will.) How about a nice picture of Gaius or even Tosh Head to cool the system?

    I know the BBC are cutting back on budgets but, so far, Merlin's actually looked pretty good. I thought it'd all be cardboard castles and plastic swords. Hilarious Holy Grail gag, by the way.

    A Howard Overman penned episode next week. If Gwen doesn't get boinked then, she never will. Expect the unexpected. Of course, then the unexpected would become the expected. In that case, expect the expected.

  2. No more Lancelot, really? I find that hard to believe.
    Awesome picture of Katie McGrath. I love her as the baddie. But you are right, worst assassin ever.

  3. Big surprise outcome for me too! I was hoping they'd find a way around the sacrifice, but figured if they didn't then it would be one of the knights... but I thought Lancelot (and Gwaine) was safe! *snif*

    But he'll be back somehow... as you mentioned the season 4 trailer kind of spoils the emotional loss in this episode. Question now is: how? ;o)


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