The finale reflected the very nature of the show; a lot of stupidity, bad writing and wasted potential with flashes of greatness.
Sherrilina, don't read if you don't want to be completely spoiled!!
NOOOOOO I CAN'T! HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO ME YOU STUPID SHOW!! ARTHUR!!!!!! *sobs histerically*
Now that Merlin is over I feel like the whole show was just a waste of time. It doesn't make any sense... years and years of prophecies promising a Merlin and an Arthur who would grow into their legendary figures, bringing the Golden Age to Camelot... but none of that happened!! Arthur wasn't a particularly great king, not the King Arthur of the myths; Merlin failed to save him; magic is still outlawed under Arthur's reign, and since he's now dead, if anyone's going to lead Camelot into the Golden Age where magic is allowed it will be Gwen, and we won't see it.
The show didn't deliver anything it had promised/teased. At the beginning we were told this was a reinterpretation of the legends, telling us the beginning of Merlin and Arthur before they became who they're destined to become... if that is the case, it was completely unnecessary to end the show the way they did, with Arthur's death. Since it was a different interpretation of the myth, I don't see why the writers at the end felt the need to stick closely to the source material when they had diverged so much from it up to that point. Arthur died too early and too young, without accomplishing any of the things the show had set out for him from the start, and all of Kilgarrah's (and other's) speechifying (past and present) feels really hollow now. The show should have ended with Arthur declaring magic lawful in Camelot, and with the start of the Golden Age of Camelot, with Arthur reigning and Merlin at his side. It should have been an open ending, with just a teasing/hinting to the end of the legend (we all know it even without seeing it).
Bah, crappy writers/showrunners.
It feels like there was some kind of change of plans, probably due to them originally thinking they had more seasons only for them to have to wrap the show up quite quickly instead.
Then there's the magic reveal. We have always known that it would happen only in the last episode ever. We all know what a waste of great opportunities this was, and how having to continue to keep Merlin's magic a secret impacted negatively on the show, so I won't start ranting about it.
I'm just glad the freaking magic reveal finally happened (at a certain point I started fearing that they would have denied us even that), even though it was rushed by Arthur's impending death. More about that later.
Speaking of Arthur's death... the whole thing was sooo stupid and insulting! First, Arthur stays there and just lets Mordred pass him through with the sword; then, the sword was forged with the breath of a dragon so Arthur will die unless they bring him to Avalon where there's this ancient magic, whatever; and then Merlin undertakes a two-day horseback journey through the woods with a dying Arthur, watching life fade away from him minute after minute.... AND HE WAITS FOR ARTHUR TO BE DEADLY DEAD TO SUMMON THE DRAGON. WHY ARE YOU SO STUPID, MERLIN? AND WHY ARE YOU THE HERO OF THIS SHOW? OR MAYBE IT'S JUST THE WRITERS WHO ARE MORE STUPID THAN A CROCODILE. F*CK YOU, MERLIN WRITERS!! YOU RUIN EVERYTHING WITH YOUR STUPIDITY. WHY AM I EVEN WATCHING THIS?
I am calm. I get that Arthur had to die (did he have to?), and possibly a slow death to give him and Merlin time for their (much appreciated by me) love-fest... but couldn't they have come up with something less moronic? I guess not, otherwise it wouldn't be Merlin.
Other iffy things before I get to what I loved about the episode:
-Mordred's death was underwheling. He was a great chatacter played by an outstanding actor, but as usual it was wasted by uninspired writing (I hate that he turned on Arthur because of a woman), and he didn't get a great send-off.
-Morgana's death was equally (or more) underwhelming. After all the built up for a confrontation between Emrys and Morgana, we didn't get an epic fight with magic, or anything really... in 2 seconds, Merlin kills her with a sword. 'kay, bye, then.
- RIP Gwain. You were brave and loyal, but it turns out you were also stupid. As if two men on their own could have taken down Morgana, a High Priestess of the old religion. Points for trying, though.
- Gwens inherits Camelot. Next time I want to be a servant there too!!
So, after all this complaining, I have to say that I actually enjoyed the episode more than I thought I would. My issues are more with the show in its entirety than with this individual episode.
What was to love in 5x13?
Arthur/Merlin. Merlin/Arthur.Oh, my heart... it is broken in a million little pieces. Colin and Bradley are perfect. The Merlin/Arthur dynamic has always been the heart of the show, and the reason why I was invested in it in the first place. The whole show could be shit, but one thing you could always count on for brilliance were these two (despite the uneven writing along the seasons, Colin and Bradley always deliver).
I loved every single minute we had between Merlin and Arthur in this episode. Focusing on them was the saving grace of this finale for me, it's what makes it possible for me to overlook the issues I have and just have feels.
After the end of the episode, I cried for 20 minutes, then I went to bed and couldn't sleep because my memory kept going back to Arthur being dead. I can't. Arthur's reaction to the reveal was spot on and reallistic under the circumstances. I would obviously have liked it spread over multiple episodes, but the writers suck. Merlin's devastation at losing his
The love and devotion between Merlin and Arthur... *sobs* OTP, to be honest. Gwen who??
Why couldn't we have some sort of happy ending?? It's a once-lighthearted kid show, it was Christmas Eve, for God's sake, why did they have to break my heart this way! *sobs again*
*cries all the tears* Help! :(
I'm gonna need therapy LOL At least I got this out of my chest. LJ is my therapy, I should show-talk more often! :p