Merlin: Review: Series 5 Episode 8: The Hollow Queen (spoiler-free)

With Merlin out of the way, Guinevere sees a new way to rid herself of Arthur…

There’s a level of nastiness in this episode – more in terms of the flashbacks to the period between series four and five than the “contemporary” material – that may surprise some; and there’s a level of incompetence as well.

Not in terms of the production of the show, but the actions of some of the characters: I can fully understand why Guinevere doesn’t want to show her hand, and therefore seeks to act by proxy (as shown in the throwforward last week). But why Morgana doesn’t simply kill when she has someone in her power, rather than inflict a horrible and agonising death on them doesn’t really make sense – although it’s another indication perhaps of her increasing psychosis.

John Shrapnel’s vivid descriptions of the Sarrum’s past deeds are bloodcurdling enough that we might almost have done without the visualisation of them – and in fact, some of them are left purely vocal. Angel Coulby is enjoying a chance to show some other sides to Gwen: there’s a great scene between her and Shrapnel with a very appropriate sting in its tail towards the end of the episode.

For the plot to proceed, Merlin has to be sent away from Camelot; Colin Morgan fans, don’t despair though – he’s still in the episode in a major way.

Verdict: The clouds of darkness continue to swirl round Merlin’s fifth season – despite a short slapstick scene between Bradley James and Richard Wilson. We need to start moving forward again.  7/10

Paul Simpson

Discussion

6 thoughts on “Merlin: Review: Series 5 Episode 8: The Hollow Queen (spoiler-free)

  1. THanks for the review. Your insights are always welcomed. I’d love to know if Merlin has a direct impact & implication into Sarrum’s story during the episode.

    Posted by Mun | November 22, 2012, 5:22 pm
  2. I like your Merlin reviews since there is always good points made. Merlin’s storyline has indeed to move forward. When will Merlin be shown as the powerful sorcerer he is meant to be? Does this episode show more of Merlin’s magic? Do we see him in a storyline that develops his powers? Do we see him seen and recognized by others as the great sorcerer he is? If not, I’m fed up with the show… It’s always about Arthur’s stupid behaviour and Gwen’s non-sensical actions. Merlin is there to clean up the mess… I’d love to see Merlin get to do what he has to do to fulfil his own destiny…

    I’d love to add that Colin Morgan fans want to see more Merlin in Merlin, not only because they’re fans of Colin Morgan and love his acting, charisma and work with his character and the stories, but also because the show is supposed to be about Merlin and that it’s Merlin’s story we ought to see more & in priority. Thank you for reading.

    Posted by May | November 22, 2012, 5:42 pm
  3. Thanks for your review! It seems that it is getting even darker in Camelot. Darker and very late for ANYTHING major to happen. I must admit I am starting to give upon the idea that the show’s main story is going to be completed by the end of season 5.

    Posted by Nimueh123 | November 22, 2012, 6:05 pm
  4. Am realy tired ov watchin merlin,dey kip on repitin d same tin.i jst nid a magic reveal in dis season.

    Posted by Youngdocto | November 24, 2012, 8:18 pm

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