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Merlin: Season 5

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Merlin: The Complete Fifth Season (DVD)

After three years of peace and harmony, the future of the Camelot couldn't be brighter. But as King Arthur and his new Queen look to bring the kingdom into a bright future, the seeds of Camelot's destruction are drawing together. The evil Morgana is hiding in the darkness. As an old face returns to the castle and gains a position amongst Arthur's inner circle, Merlin must protect the king more than ever... For the new arrival is Mordred, the druid boy whose destiny is to end the king's life and bring chaos down on Camelot. But as the death song of King Uther haunts the castle and Guinevere crosses over to the dark side, both Merlin and Arthur find that their destiny is approaching... the battle of Camelot is about to reach a deadly conclusion... and nothing will ever be the same again.

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The fifth season of The Adventures of Merlin brings this spin on the Arthurian mythos to a richly satisfying conclusion. Previous seasons have sometimes veered toward portentousness or camp, but these 13 episodes hit the right note of gravitas without too much pomp, and the final episode is genuinely moving--with particular kudos to Bradley James as Arthur, whose portrait of an arrogant snob becoming a gracious and just king culminates in this last season. Merlin (Colin Morgan, still gawkily handsome) continues to keep his magic powers hidden while using them to bring Arthur's vision of Camelot to fruition; Morgana (Katie McGrath, still lusciously imperious) burns more furiously with hatred and lust for revenge after having been imprisoned and tormented; Guinevere (Angel Coulby, striking a nice balance of regal and down-to-earth) is now the queen but undergoes her own dark trials. The fifth season achieves an epic sweep thanks to the dense storylines and the CGI-enhanced landscape, packed with gorgeously designed castles and ominous forests. (Alas, the assorted monsters and magical beings don't fare quite as well; there's always something a little cheesy about them.) Fortunately, the writers and directors have taken care to balance these big-picture elements with human details and intimacy (as well as a lot of cleavage and naked brawny torsos). Human relationships--and particularly the mix of banter and compassion between Merlin and Arthur--remain at the core. Kingdoms rise and battles rage, but fate hinges on a kiss on the lips or a knife in the gut. Merlin may be a hodgepodge of Celtic mythology, but the bits and pieces have been sewn together more coherently and compellingly than anyone might expect. --Bret Fetzer


Product Details

  • Actors: Colin Morgan, Bradley James, Katie McGrath, Angel Coulby, Richard Wilson
  • Directors: Justin Molotnikov
  • Writers: Julian Murphy, Johnny Capps, Julian Jones, Jake Mitchie
  • Producers: Julian Murphy, Johnny Capps
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: April 9, 2013
  • Run Time: 536 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (274 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00B5A9FLY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,079 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

175 of 187 people found the following review helpful By R. M. Fisher TOP 500 REVIEWER on February 21, 2013
Format: DVD
For casual fans of "Merlin", the fifth and final season may feel like a rousing send-off, with fine performances from its four leads, a host of returning characters, and a "full circle" quality to its finale that certainly doesn't pull any punches. For long-time fans that have gotten invested in the characters and storylines, it's an immensely frustrating experience, simply because said characters and storylines have been sacrificed for a tired old formula. With only two exceptions (Mordred and Queen Guinevere) there is nothing in this season - NOTHING - that the audience has not seen a million times before.

"Merlin" began as a prequel, intending to explore the lives of Arthur, Merlin, Morgana and Guinevere before they became their famous legendary selves. Essentially, it was to Arthurian legend what Smallville was to the Superman mythos. Yet by this point, the show is not a prequel anymore, but a retelling: Arthur is king, Guinevere is queen, Morgana is their enemy and the Knights of the Round Table have been established. The prequel aspect of the show is over, yet despite all this, nothing has changed for our main character.

The unique idea that these particular writers brought to the Arthurian source material is that Merlin has to keep his powers a secret due to a law banning magic throughout the kingdom, resulting in him protecting Arthur whilst pretending to be a lowly manservant. It worked well enough for the first two or so seasons, but by this point, it's been TEN in-show years since Merlin first came to Camelot, and Merlin is still not any closer to revealing his secret than he was at the very start of the show.
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55 of 60 people found the following review helpful By Jlehr on April 3, 2013
Format: DVD
I recently caught up on Merlin through Netflix and became pretty obsessed with the show. Luckily for me I was going to London over winter so I would be able to watch the fifth season as it played in the UK instead of having to wait in the states.

What I ended up seeing broke my heart. Merlin is a great show, especially the early seasons. This season though was not worth my time. As happy as I am that Gwen and Arthur tied the knot and are happy, I was very sad by the hurried way the producers decided to wrap up the THOUSANDS of loose ends that have come to pass as the show went on. First of all, Merlin should have revealed his magic to Arthur AGES ago. The fact that producers waited until the last possible minute for that to happen was horrible. There should have been more of a result. Arthur, although pigheaded and annoying at times, loves Merlin and he should have come out with it ages ago. The choices made by the writers and producers boggle my mind. I don't understand why they would choose to honor the original legend in some ways and then subvert them in other horrible ways.

The rushed conclusion was very sad to me as a loyal viewer. The way Mordred changed was horrifying but also predictable. I know the point is that we can't escape our fate but the problem is that Merlin could have and acted stupidly. So much of this was his fault that I could barely stomach the ending. I liked the perceived bit of hope at the end but it was so frustrating and I felt could have been wrapped up better.

I just wish that the ending had been more gratifying instead of hurried. There was no reason they needed to drag out everything to the very end. Also...there was no glorious Camelot. There were three years of fake peace. The promised ending that I wanted was not granted.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Littlelady on March 21, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
I am in total agreement with the reviews of this season, when it was advertised as the final season i was very shocked, how are they going to fit everything they promised into one season ? Well i have developed a deep love of this series and am totally DISGUSTED with the writers... It still has Arthur as a person incapable of taking care of himself and Merlin as basically his slave, NOT the great people they should have become. It was actually like watching a rerun of earlier seasons just actors portraying different positions. What has happened to Kilgharrah ? The White Dragon ? Where is the story line of legend ? Come on writers and producers, WHY HAVE YOU DONE THIS TO YOUR LOYAL FOLLOWERS ? ? ?
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Caitlin on April 14, 2013
Format: DVD
Where can I begin with this review, other than how I wished the 5th season had been spectacular? Sadly, though, I felt it was far from it and was constantly reminded of how writers take the easy road in shows instead of choosing risky plots. Merlin: The Complete Fifth Season ought to have been a season of triumph, were Arthur defeats Morgana and reigns with his queen, Merlin can live as a wizard and adviser to the king, and Mordred can assume role as either ally or villain. Sadly, what I got was a season with three primary plot lines that repeated over and over and a very poor ending.

The truth is that what started out as clever and unique show quickly devolved into a drag, with boring and superfluous plots and characters. Sometime around season 3 I began to realize this, then felt more hopeful when season 4 was more concise and interesting. Sadly, season 5's main plots include either: a. someone being kidnapped by Morgana, b. a spy in Camelot who is sent by Morgana, or c. Morgana attempts to take over the castle and fails yet again. This theme was repeated over and over until I thought I had serious deja vu, the only unique aspect to this season was the introduction of an adult Mordred who lingered between being good and becoming evil (much like a guy named Anakin who became Darth Vader, who then decided in about five minutes and if you blinked you missed it). That was it. There was no time for Merlin to actually be a wizard adviser to Arthur, there was no time to enjoy the defeat of Morgana, it was all crammed into the last episode. And I had assumed Arthur would be different from his old arrogant 1st and 2nd season self and actually value Merlin for all that he had done for him and with him in season 4.
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Like Merlin? Don't Watch The Last Two Episodes
I would change that to the last three episodes, because that is when Mordred betrays Arthur. Very boneheaded for the writers. Mordred was a heroic young knight full of promise and goodness, and he saved Arthur and Merlin several times.
Jan 7, 2014 by W.Westphal |  See all 3 posts
Wrap-up of Merlin?
CissyC, wait till you watch the disappointing ending.
Jun 9, 2013 by merlinexlover |  See all 4 posts
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