Merlin returned to one of its favourite devices this week — a beautiful, smirking nasty lady that all the men pander to even though it’s obvious to anyone with half a brain that she is No Good.
It wasn’t Morgana this week, though, it was a a cross between a woman and a snake, who Merlin and the Knights stumble across in the form of a pretty lady called Lamia. This snake-lady has the power to enchant men and basically suck the life out of them. Not nice, really. Lamia hates Merlin from the offset, and the usually lovely Knights turn into absolute gits as they try to out-macho each other to impress her, and shout at Merlin when he tries to point out that they’re all acting like idiots and that Lamia wants to kill them rather than kiss them.
There was a lot of the Knights-Being-Horrible in this episode. I’m not entirely sure whether this was trying to show that the Knights were completely under Lamia’s spell or that when they don’t have Arthur around to keep them in line, they’re really horrid to the servants. I’m hoping it’s the second one, because Gwaine, Elyan, Percival and Leon are usually nice to Merlin and treat him as almost an equal. They certainly fought amongst themselves just as much as they fought with Merlin, so it’ll be something to keep an eye out for in future episodes.
Gwen was there again, doing her Gwen thing. Since the series has progressed and the previous Good Babe (Morgana) has gone off and become a Sexy Baddie, Gwen has been slowly turned into the next Good Babe. I mentioned at the start of the series that she has found a new tunic and a Wonderbra; her boobs were so pushed up at the start of this episode that she could have rested her chin on them. She then changed into what I can only describe as an outfit River Song would wear in Medeival times.
Don’t get me wrong, Angel Coulby is beautiful, but the transformation from Girl-Next-Door to Girl-That’s-Phwoar (sorry) is a constant source of amusement, and it was very blatant in this episode. But I can forgive that because they made her wield a sword and be fantastic, which is the Gwen I loved from previous series.
Anyway, this was a bit of a insipid episode to be honest. No Morgana being evil, but Agravaine hanging around again being an inneffective and useless spy. Not much Arthur, not much amusing Arthur-Merlin bromance, a bit of snogging from Gwen and Arthur, bit of “Awwww” from the relationship between Gaius and Merlin, bit of an anti-climax. But that’s fine. It’s fine. I’m sure it’ll pick up.
And how many times have I said that so far this series...?
You can see this episode of Merlin on the iPlayer, or find more about the series on the Merlin section of the BBC website.