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Camelot: Season 1

3.9 out of 5 stars 433 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

In the wake of King Uther's sudden death, chaos threatens to engulf Britain. When the sorcerer Merlin has visions of a dark future, he installs the young and impetuous Arthur, Uther's unknown son and heir, who has been raised from birth as a commoner. But Arthur's cold and ambitious half sister Morgan will fight him to the bitter end, summoning unnatural forces to claim the crown in this epic battle for control. These are dark times indeed for the new king, with Guinevere being the only shining light in Arthur's harsh world. Faced with profound moral decisions, and the challenge of uniting a kingdom broken by war and steeped in deception, Arthur will be tested beyond imagination. Forget everything you think you know…this is the story of Camelot that has never been told before.

The story of King Arthur and Ye Olde Round Table has proven sturdy enough to support a variety of cinematic approaches, ranging from the Disneyfied antics of The Sword and the Stone, the action-movie gloss of First Knight, to the gory, hallucinatory mysticism of John Boorman's Excalibur. (To say nothing of that one version with the killer bunny and "ni"-saying knights.) Camelot, the lavishly melodramatic 10-episode television series produced for Starz, attempts to infuse the classic tale with the same mixture of cranked-up sex and violence that made the network's Spartacus such a hoot. Although the deliciously evil supporting cast and gorgeous Irish scenery help keep the show above the level of mere guilty pleasure, the decision to portray its central character as a whisper-thin teen heartthrob (The Twilight Saga's Jamie Campbell Bower) may leave some viewers biting their thumbs. Series creators Michael Hirst (The Tudors) and Chris Chibnall (Torchwood) kick things off at an initially disorienting full gallop, placing country boy Arthur on the throne and under the tutelage of Merlin (Joseph Fiennes) by the middle of the first episode. This streamlining of the main story quickly proves to be a good thing, however, as it allows the show to devote more time to its secondary figures, including a grieving queen (Claire Forlani), an amusingly gung-ho Sir Gawain (Clive Standen), a vengeful rival lord (James Purfoy), and Merlin himself, winningly portrayed by Fiennes via a disarming mixture of roof-raising histrionics and ominous whispers. (Much like Game of Thrones, the show depicts magic as a seriously unstable force.) Engaging as all of these characters are, MVP honors go to Morgan le Fay (Casino Royale's Eva Green), Arthur's half-sister with a continent-size yearning for the throne. Purring her words and gliding through the baroque sets in a succession of stylized gowns (that is, when she can be bothered to wear anything at all), Green creates a wonderfully slinky villainess for the ages: a woman scorned who finds a new method of attack whenever her foe turns his back. Arthur's story may give Camelot its foundation, but she keeps the fires burning. --Andrew Wright

Special Features

Character Profiles
The Knights of Camelot
The Women of Camelot
On The Set: Mooney’s Movie
Scene Breakdowns
Candid Camelot

Product Details

  • Actors: Jamie Campbell Bower, Joseph Fiennes, Eva Green
  • Producers: Graham King, Michael Hirst
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Starz
  • DVD Release Date: September 13, 2011
  • Run Time: 515 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (433 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,049 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Camelot: Season 1" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
*Two very mild spoilers below*

You must understand, I am a big history buff. So when a friend and I went to the theater some time ago and I saw the trailer for this, I was both elated and saddened (as I don't have Starz.) When I learned that the brilliant mind that helped craft The Tudors, another of my favorite (albeit historically innacurate) series, I was on board, one hundred percent. And while I may have had to wait for streams to go up online to see it, you better believe I was waiting eagerly in front of my computer screen every weekend.

The basic tale of King Arthur is known by all, so no need to repeat that. Here, King Uther has recently died, and his quick witted daughter Morgan sees this as her perfect opportunity to claim the throne she has so long coveted. Merlin, however, has something else in mind. Arthur, having been raised in the countryside unaware of his parentage, is quite surprised to find the sorcerer in his home spewing tales of being the son of a king. Merlin sees a future in this boy, a way to mend a country torn apart by warlord kings, and it will all start in one place, a crumbling stronghold that will stand as a beacon for a new era: Camelot.

It's pretty much common knowledge that a lot of peopele don't like this series. Even as a fan, I admit there is some to be desired, and certain things could have gone better. But there is still a lot to appreciate.

A big sore spot for a lot of people is the casting of Jamie Campbell Bower as the well known king. While yes, I'm sure someone out there could have carried the role better, this choice wasn't a horrible one. This Arthur is not the one we tend to immediately think of.
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Format: DVD
There are some classic tales that have been so oft told, I could probably go my whole life without revisiting the topic. The legend of King Arthur is certainly one of those stories which has been covered from every angle possible. And I've seen them all--from classical interpretations (Boorman's Excalibur), musical productions (Lerner and Loewe's Camelot), modern day variations (Romero's Knightriders), introspective art house pieces (Bresson's Lancelot du Lac), and countless other incarnations. Yet the story is so vivid and enthralling, it's hard to resist its allure. When I heard that the Starz network was planning to reinvent the legend of "Camelot," I was somewhat apathetic, somewhat worried, but also strangely hopeful. The network is coming off a huge success with its over-the-top bloody sword and sandals epic "Spartacus." So it makes sense they wanted to tackle another period adventure. Love it or hate it, though, "Spartacus" is a graphic spectacle that will assault your senses and leave you reeling. "Camelot" doesn't attempt the same type of visceral in-your-face aggression, but it seems to want to have it both ways. This version is completely sanitized for modern viewers (I'll speak to that later) but still wants to be edgy and provocative (oh look, there's Guinevere topless).

I'm not going to recount the plot of the boy King, other than to say that this version sticks to the primary elements of the tale while trying some creative sleight of hand to reimagine peripheral aspects. When King Uther dies under mysterious circumstances, his sorceress daughter Morgan (Eva Green) seems the likely heir. But cunning Merlin (Joseph Fiennes), who is having visions of foreboding, has a big secret to reveal.
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I wish they never made season one of this series as there will be no more seasons to come. According to IMDB a number of the actors are scheduled for other projects & that is why production has stopped. I love Arthurian themed tv and movies and the castles & village sets seemed so much more authentic to the era.

Arthur starts off as this skinny kid with no regard for Guenevere's relationship and the actor seemed positively wrong for the roll. He started evolving into a man and king and a 2nd season would have developed his character much further, stronger and better. Merlin was magnificent. An entirely different yet fully workable & fascinating spin on the man. I was sorry to see a few of the characters killed off in the first season, I think they were rich for more storytelling.

I truly am extremely disappointed that this has come to an end. I really am. I find myself waiting for whispers of a second season with the original cast even though there is no evidence to support my wish.
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Format: Amazon Video
more people liked it than disliked it.

Really had a hard time accepting the boy who plays Arthur, seems to me he should have been cast as the farmers pig boy, not as a ledgenday warrior king. I tried very hard to finish watching the series. Well I watched it, it's pretty much crap, but 2 stars for being better than staring at the wall.

It was not even close to the anything like the legend, I guess the names were the same, that's the only nice thing I can say.
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I bought three episodes and had to drop it. The casting of the boy for King Arthur was just plain bad. He comes off as a skateboard kid from Cally totally confused by the role. All his supporting actors would make better kings than him. The best actor of the show plays Morgan. She is beautiful, strong, intelligent and interesting. Merlin, as a bald headed young guy, actually pulls it off with some good acting. I like the actor who plays Gawain, but alas I can't sink anymore money into a King who would be better suited as a pageboy for Gawain.
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