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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Merlin Series Episodes 1.1 - 1.13 and 2.1 - 2.13

Merlin Series Episodes 1.1 - 1.13 and 2.1 - 2.13

You may view this article in black ink on a white background, as well, at: 'Merlin, A Delightful British Series! Seasons 1 & 2 Episodes'


Hello, Everyone!

There is so much that I enjoy about this 'Merlin' program.  For example, I enjoy the producers' choices of each cast member (including Richard Wilson, Michael Cronin, John Hurt, David Durham, John Lynch, Colin Salmon, Anthony Head, David Schofield, Colin Morgan, Pauline Collins, Caroline Faber, Angel Coulby, Katie McGrath, Laura Donnelly, Sarah Parish, Emilia Fox, Alice Patten, Michelle Ryan, Holliday Grainger, Georgia Moffett, Santiago Cabrera, Adetomiwa Edun, Kyle Redmond-Jones, Sean Francis, Tom Hopper, Alex Price, Bradley James, Keith Thorne, Rupert Young, Asa Butterfield, Eoin Macken, Kevin Eldon and Tome Ellis).  I appreciate each of the cast members for what they bring to this version of the legend and I appreciate how their character's change, over time, for this version of the legend to work.

'Merlin' is a British fantasy-adventure television series developed by Julian Jones, Jake Michie, Julian Murphy and Johnny Capps. It began its broadcast on the BBC One channel on September 20, 2008. The series is based on the Arthurian legends of the mythical wizard, Merlin, and his relationship with Prince Arthur, yet differs from traditional versions of the legend in many ways, particularly with the characters. It is produced by an independent production company, Shine Limited. After a successful first season, the American broadcaster, NBC, began airing the program on June 21, 2009, however, after a decline in viewership 'Merlin' was moved to the SyFy cable network. On SyFy, the second series / season of 'Merlin' began broadcasting on April 2, 2010. The second series / season began airing on on BBC One September 19, 2009. On September 5, 2010, London's BFI Southbank previewed the first two episodes of the third series / season for its September Film Funday programme.

The concept for 'Merlin' was influenced by the American show 'Smallville', which is about the early years of Superman. After many failed attempts (many of us are so glad they did not give up!) to bring the 'Merlin' program to life, development of the current 'Merlin' began in late 2006, with physical production beginning in March 2008. The series received a mixed reception when it began its broadcast. Critics were upset with the flat dialogue and the modern look to the series. One critic, in particular, called the whole concept "bland". The series première drew an overnight average of 6.65 million viewers in the 7:00PM slot, a final consolidated figure was 7.15 million, despite being scheduled against the popular ITV series, 'The X Factor'. The first series / season, as a whole, had an average of 6.32 million viewers, which is fewer than 'Doctor Who' attracted during its first series / season, and slightly more than those received by 'Robin Hood'. Also, 'Merlin' was the fifth most-watched program on BBC iPlayer in 2008. The third series / season of 'Merlin' began on September 11, 2010 overseas (they are so fortunate; wish we could all enjoy it at the same time!), and ended on December 4, 2010. A fourth season / series was confirmed on October 25, 2010 (Yeah! Hallelujah! Can you tell I'm a 'Merlin' fan?). ~ Wikipedia

The producers, writers and all others involved with the storylines, have created and written a delightful program, that includes courtship and romances that are refreshingly wholesome (nothing you have to switch the channel away from), tender & so much more that is good and they've done so for each generation featured on the program; I love that! For example, the 'grandfather-like' Gaius (Richard Wilson) has a 'true love', 'grandmother-like' Alice (Pauline Collins), 'father-like' Uther's  (Anthony Head) 'true love' was 'mother-like' Ygraine (Alice Patten), 'son-like' Merlin's (Colin Morgan) possibly was or could have been 'daughter-like' Freya (Laura Donnelly), and of course 'son-like' Arthur's (Bradley James) 'true love' is 'daughter-like' Guinevere (Angel Coulby).  What I'm trying to demonstrate is that 'Merlin' contains  storylines of at least three generations: grandfather-like / grandmother-like characters, father / mother characters and son / daughter characters.

One of my favorite romance storylines, of this version of the Camelot legend, is the epic, gradually-growing courtship and romance between Arthur & Guinevere. The producers, writers & all involved have created such a precious, attractive love story for us to watch blossom over much time, with accompanying joys, victories, trials and angst included.  The actors that play 'Arthur' and 'Guinevere', Bradley James and Angel Coulby, convey so much with their eyes alone. They communicate so much feeling with their eyes and facial expressions, as they look at each other, that we recognize and understand how they feel and we strongly desire for them to be able to marry each other. Guinevere and Arthur convey mutual love for each other; their actions convey that they cherish each other for their inner qualities and character!

These two, Coulby and James, do such an exceptional job in portraying this unintended, unplanned, 'forbidden-to-be-married-to-each-other', 'true love', wholesome courtship and romance, that we viewers definitely want Arthur and Guinevere to overcome the obstacles that would keep them from becoming married to each other. We feel this desire for this Arthur and this Guinevere even though we already know that they will end up married to each other, due to other, older versions of the Camelot legend.  Perhaps we feel this way because we don't know for sure that this version will be written so that these two marry each other. We'll have to wait and see.

If you are a fan of 'Ever After: A Cinderella Story' with Drew Barrymore as the Cinderella character, Danielle, and Dougray Scott, as Prince Henry, you will love or probably already love and enjoy this creative, fresh version of the Camelot legend, 'Merlin'. In 'Ever After', Prince Henry and Danielle were having a courtship that was forbidden, due to their class levels, although he didn't realize it initially.  The same thing happens to Guinevere and Prince Arthur, in this version of the Camelot legend called 'Merlin'; they are not allowed to be spouses due to their classes. A premier factor of this 'Arthur + Guinevere' romance and courtship is that it is not something either of them planned, plotted, nor schemed for. Neither of them expected it, they did not foresee it, they did not desire it, nor aspire to have any kind of relationship with each other and certainly not marriage to each other.  'True love' develops between them; it happens to them. And we get to see their 'true love' develop and happen to them, over time, similar to real-life 'true love' stories.

Also, I think we like this courtship so very much because of how it is written. So far, in series / seasons 1 and 2, Guinevere and Arthur have some good morals already, they care about other people to the point of getting involved and being of assistance in whatever good ways they can, they develop mutual respect over time, they listen to each other, they appreciate the great inner qualities of the other, they encourage each other to good, they value each other, they protect each other, they are tender with each other more often than not, they are not sexist with each other, they are concerned about each other, they've saved each other's life more than once, they enjoy each other's company, they become 'for' and not 'against' each other, their relationship isn't built on a foundation of lust, they admire each other's 'good heart', they want goodness for the citizens of Camelot, they cherish each other, Guinevere isn't interested in marrying merely for money, wealth, increased status and power, neither is Arthur. Also, when Guin and Arthur have troubles and problems, we discern that they will work through them, together because of the way they've been written. In 'Merlin' they depict the Guinevere + Arthur 'true love' as such a beautiful state of existence that survives problems and troubles.  I'm sure there's more to state about this lovely courtship and romance; so far, these are the elements I see written into this courtship and romance based on 'true love'.

By the number of fans this show has, I think it's safe to say we like this depiction of 'true love'. Also, I think we like this depiction of  'true love' because we know it's possible in real-life. We've seen and / or experienced 'true love' in real life.  Wouldn't it be ever so lovely if every man met and married his own queenly 'Guinevere' who is as great a person on the inside as this one is and will grow to be, and every woman met and married her own kingly 'Arthur' who is as great a person on the inside as this one is and will grow to be?  I think so.  'True love' really is beautiful. and here, in 'Merlin' it's that love that brings about good changes.

Another recurring theme that I love about 'Merlin' is the number of fathers in major episodes [Tom (David Durham), King Olaf (Mark Lewis Jones), Aulfric (Kennneth Cranham)] that love, care for and protect their children. The 'Merlin' fathers aren't perfect (just like real-life), however they are there and trying to be fatherly toward their children. Of course, King Uther needs lessons on being a better, personable father, yet there are several scenes of Uther's loving-kindness that convey how much he cares for and loves his children, Arthur and Morgana. Such as when Arthur was mortally wounded and he began carrying him from Gaius's clinic across the courtyard, and how he sat and slept at Arthur's bedside waiting for him to recover, and the time he told Arthur how he was not disappointed in him; those scenes are among my favorites. Or, for example, all the times he thought harm had come to Morgana and he sent search parties out for her. Additionally, the very short amout of time Merlin (Colin Morgan) had with his father, Balinor (John Lynch) after they both realized they were father and son, was precious; that is one of my favorite parts of 'Merlin', as well.

I appreciate how, from series / season 1 to 2, we can witness the growth in character and friendship of Merlin (Colin Morgan), Guinevere (Angel Coulby), Morgana (Katie McGrath) and Arthur (Bradley James). Guinivere and Morgana have been great friends, that looked out for each other like good sisters do. I appreciate the wonderful friendship Morgana and Guinevere had. Merlin and Arthur become friends that look out for each other, like brothers. I appreciate the growing, brotherly friendship between Arthur and Merlin. Yes, Merlin's destiny requires him to be a type of guardian angel for Arthur, however their is a brotherly friendship between them that is a friendship of their choice. Also, I appreciate the friendships between all four, Merlin, Guinivere, Morgana and Arthur, that allows them to work together, as a team, when either of them needs help or other people need help. They help each other as equals, using the assets of their classes (as depicted) to be of assistance; two 'commoners' and two 'royals' working together, as equals.

Also, I appreciate the wise, caring, protective grandfather character of the series, Gaius (Richard Wilson). I appreciate Merlin's relationship with his mother, Hunith (Caroline Faber) ['Hunith' seems like an old version of the name, 'Honey' or 'Huney' doesn't it?]. I appreciate all of the diversity of the main cast of characters, the characters seen in the crowds, the court of the castle and the town of Camelot. I love the concept of the 'knight' and the morals, honor and other qualities they stand for as men. I appreciate this version's Knights of the Round Table, too (season / series 3). Also, I enjoy the fact that several generations of people are depicted throughout each season / series! There's so much that I appreciate and enjoy about this Merlin program and that which I've mentioned is a portion of it all.

For your enjoyment as well as my own, I've created one, long YouTube playlist of the romance scenes & other 'Merlin' scenes in appreciation of the videos and the videographers that took the time to make them. Also, I've created a shorter playlist that features the romance scenes & other scenes with fitting choices of music, by these YouTube videographers. Lastly, I've created a playlist by these videographers that features humorous moments of 'Merlin'.

After watching those YouTube videos, I read many of the comments people shared.  Like many of the commentors for those videos, I hope that this program's Guinivere is written to be faithful to Arthur. The Lancelot in this version, so far, has been honorable and has stated that he is not willing to interfere in the relationship between Guinevere and Arthur. And, so far this Guinevere has been written as a lady that would definitely be faithful to her husband.  Additionally, these commentors repeatedly expressed their appreciation for:

  • this family-friendly 'Merlin' series,
  • for the wholesome 'Merlin' romances,
  • the epicness of the 'Arwen' romance, as they call it, between Arthur and Gwen (Guinevere / Guin),
  • the gradual growth of the 'Arwen' romance over a slow period of time
  • the cast members
  • this creative, fresh twist on the entire 'Merlin' storyline of each episode 
  • the friendships 

Also, while reading 'Merlin' fans' comments on YouTube, I realized that there are many, many, many 'Merlin' fans worldwide, they are multi-generational romantics, and they value the wholesome programming that 'Merlin' is, immensely, others are so grateful that this program is being shared in the USA; I discovered many 'kindred spirits' on YouTube!

Additionally, many of the commentors on YouTube stated that they couldn't get episodes of 'Merlin' in their country and they are not able to get the series on DVD, either. And, therefore, they were so grateful to the YouTube videographers that made 'Merlin' videos and shared them. It touched my heart that all these people, around the globe, want to see this high-quality programming, 'Merlin', and cannot. Thinking of their dilemma, the fact that I'd recently discovered Fancast  videos of 'Merlin', via IMDb, kept coming to mind and I decided I would do what I can to share this wonderful program, 'Merlin'. 

Knowing Blogger blogs are accessible globally and thinking that includes every nook and cranny, so to speak, on the globe / Earth, I imagined that video shared on Blogger blogs could be viewed globally.  Also, I knew that the Fancast videos were embeddable. Next I thought, "I can post these embeddable videos on my Blogger blog so that, hopefully, many more, if not all that want to, can view the 'Merlin' series.  So, thanks to the 'embeddable video generosity' of SyFy, Hulu and Fancast and their sponsors, I've been able to post FULL episodes of ALL of the 'Merlin' series / season 1 and 2, (26 videos with a minimum  number of commercials from their sponsors) to this Blogger blog for all of you to access and enjoy! They are all scheduled to post today, December 30, 2010.  After today, you can click on 'Merlin Series' label and that link will take you to all (26) of the 'Merlin' videos I have posted on this blog. Also, thanks to the BBC official 'Merlin' site, I have included series / seasons 1 and 2 images in the posts.  The images of the posts are available from BBC 'Merlin'.

In one week all the 'Merlin' fans in the USA will be tuning into the SyFy channel to watch series / season 3 of 'Merlin'. Because, the third season / series of 'Merlin' will begin airing on January 7, 2011 on SyFy. Many of us in the USA have been blessed to get a 'YouTube preview' of what series / season 3 of 'Merlin' is about, due to the fact that it has already aired in the UK, during Autumn 2010 and  many series / season 3 videos are already online. (Wouldn't it be absolutely wonderful if we could view 'Merlin' the same year and dates as those in the UK do?) You can view some of those series / season 3 YouTube videos in my playlists mentioned above in this post; those videos are the ones with the most recent dates.

Again, I appreciate Fancast, Hulu, SyFy and IMDb for sharing these 'Merlin' FULL episode lists and videos with all of us and the BBC for sharing the wallpapers / images, and more, with all of us!  Additionally, I'm grateful to the producers, writers, actors, actresses, extras (actresses & actors), the crew and all the other people that took the time and are taking the time to make this wonderful, entertaining, 'three-generation friendly' program, 'Merlin'.  I have enjoyed series / seasons 1 and 2, and I am looking forward to viewing series / seasons 3, 4 and beyond! It's a priceless, great treat to have something this nice to watch on television when I do watch television; I wish there was more of it.

Related Links:
IMDb 'Merlin' Episode List Series / Seasons 1 - 3 (2008 - 2010): http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1199099/episodes

Watch Full, 'Merlin' Episodes from Series / Seasons 1 - 2 at Fancast: http://www.fancast.com/tv/Merlin/100564/full-episodes. On Fancast use the green replay button to watch again, use the turquoise envelope to share the video via e-mail, the Facebook 'f' to share there, and the Twitter 't' to share there. Also,  I think you'll enjoy watchlng 'Merlin' episode clips and behind-the-scenes clips via 'Secrets and Magic' at Fancast: http://www.fancast.com/tv/Merlin/100564/clips

Great source of 'Merlin' wallpapers for your computer and other great 'Merlin' content: http://www.bbc.co.uk/merlin/basic/pictures/

'Merlin' Episodes: 'Beauty and the Beast I & II'
For those of you that are new to 'Merlin', here are two videos that are from series / season 2 which depict a humor-filled 'Merlin' version of the 'Beauty and the Beast'.

The DVDs for 'Merlin' series / seasons 1 & 2

Delight in the Lord

4Delight thyself also in the LORD: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Psalm 37:4, KJV
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