Camelot: Review: Season 1 Ep 10

Starz/Channel 4, June 10 (US) August 6 (UK)

Morgan takes Camelot… almost. Arthur returns (seemingly from the dead, as far as Morgan knows) and takes back his crown…

Camelot ends with something of a whimper rather than a bang. This series seems to have lost its way after a good beginning, with resources clearly stretched as this grand finale plays more like a mid-season two parter than an epic conclusion.

Opening with Arthur alone, building ludicrous traps to pick off his enemies one-by-one, the central character is kept away from the dramatic action for most of the episode, while Morgan gets all her dominoes in a row. It allows for the all-too-predictable demise of Leontes, leaving the way for Arthur to get it on with Guinevere. When he does—at the episode’s end—there’s yet another Morgan doppelganger twist that sets up a second series we’ll now never see…

Joseph Fiennes’ Merlin has been a huge let-down in the final few episodes, doing next to nothing and not using his magic to help out Arthur or defeat Morgan. What was the point of him, if not to do those things? Eva Green, once more, is great and the only downside about the show’s cancellation is that we won’t get to see more of her. Ah well, there’s always her turn in Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows to come.

It’s a shame that this series did not follow in the footsteps of Spartacus, going for balls-to-the-wall melodrama and extreme characterisation, instead of the rather limp Arthur we’ve been served up. Jamie Campbell Bowers was clearly miscast, and that has fatally undermined what could have been a good show from the beginning.

Verdict: A nice looking show that failed to live up to its early promise.

Episode 10 ‘Reckoning’: 6/10

Brian J. Robb

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