Produced by the BBC, the TV series Merlin tells the classic story of Arthur and the knights of the round table. However, it centers around Merlin in his younger years. The series started in 2008 and a third season has been ordered by the BBC. Merlin is one of the more popular and successful fantasy television series around.
The young Merlin (in the series Merlin is about the same age as Arthur) lives in Camelot is a land where magic is banned. Merlin finds out he has magical powers but and a dragon tells Merlin that it is his destiny to keep Arthur save. Merlin continues to work as Arthur’s manservant but has to hide his abilities for fear of imprisonment or worse by king Uther.
Other Arthurian characters like Morgana (daughter of the king who can see the future and slowly turns evil) and Guinevere (her handmaid with whom Arthur falls in love) also play important parts in the series.
Style and themes
The series is focused on a relatively young audience. It contains humor generally has good story lines and also good acting performances, which is important as the show is mainly character driven. On the other hand, the story doesn’t go that deep but that is understandable for a series that is also focused on children and teenagers.
The visual effects are somewhat poorly done but then again, that is not what the series is about. It is an entertaining, light-hearted series that does contain quite a bit of morality as can be expected from this kind of heroic fantasy.
Merlin is produced by the BBC and like most of their productions the show is quite good. I’m not that much of a fan myself but I can understand this television series being a success.