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on 20 October 2012
*Please Note, this is purely a review of THE EPISODES on this DVD, which I will be updating weekly, and then again when I have the genuine article.

MERLIN has come to the darkest part of the legend now, I've noticed, and It's not so much a family show anymore. In my opinion, this is a brilliant thing, as I much prefer the darker episodes to the light-hearted ones in the first series.

ARTHUR'S BANE - PART ONE kicks off the series brilliantly, and it's clear from just the opening two minuets that this series has got a lot, lot darker. However, this does not stop the friendly banter between Merlin and Arthur: "Is there anything you're actually good at?" - "Putting up with you!?" Very nice to see Liam Cunningham as well, after seeing him in Outcast, which I personally thought was very good, but it didn't do too well. Gwen seems to be settling in to the role of Queen very nicely too, even if a bit harsh. The episode, even though I found it slow in parts, was great entertainment, and really made me excited for Part Two. (8/10)

ARTHUR'S BANE - PART TWO continued the story, and let me say, it really delivered. Aithusa, Mordred, Slow-mo sword fights, Morgana going absolutely stark-raving MENTAL and a weird blue thing, I thought it was already a treat, but it was really the last ten minuets that got my brain going "WOW!" I know the writers said Mordred in series 5 would be 'complicated', but who's side is he really on? All I can say is, if it's Morgana's, then Arthur's in deep $#!% (9/10)

THE DEATH SONG OF UTHER PENDRAGON was an episode I had been looking forward to ever since I found out that Anthony Head would be returning as a guest. Arthur had done so many things to Camelot that everybody knew Uther would despise, and all these things are addressed in this episode, which I really liked, because, Paranormal Activity had NOTHING on it! It's one of those episodes that makes you jump and $#!% your pants at every conceivable occasion, and the ending - Oh, the ending! So many people were left shouting at the TV. We were SO CLOSE to the truth! Though, it can't be long can it? Please? (10/10)

ANOTHER'S SORROW was somewhat of a letdown after the first three episodes. Mithian returns, but she was a character I did not care for anyway, being thretaned by Morgana, who spends a lot of the episode under an ageing spell. There's a scene at the end between Arthur and Odin, but that's really all that stood out for me. And where has Mordred gone? I thought he was a knight now, but he wasn't in this episode at all! (6/10)

THE DISIR was a great, great improvement on the previous episode. For starters, the whole story is basically centered around Mordred, and since we have not seen him properly in action for two weeks now, this is a very good thing. This episode is slightly dark as well (though not as dark as episode three), and centers around the fact that fate says that Mordred will eventually kill Arthur, and Merlin spends most of the episode pondering on this. There is also a scene in this episode that really had me shouting very rudely and loudly at the TV, and I'm pretty sure everyone else was too. (9/10)

THE DARK TOWER is a prime example of pushing the boundaries of pre-watershed. A very, very dark episode that tops even The Death Song of Uther Pendragon - too dark for a family show. However, as I am the only person in my family that watches Merlin, it does not bother me. Another Mordred-less episode (again!), but this time, most of the screen-time is given to Gwen, who spends the episode locked in a 'Dark Tower' with mandrake roots hanging from the ceiling, which of course, creates twisted illusions of Merlin, Arthur and Elyan laughing manically, which even creeped me out a bit. The end of this episode was very unexpected, and in more ways that one. Something happens, but I won't say what it is in case of spoilers, but then, it's the last 30-45 seconds of the episode that really makes us go "WHAAAAAAATT!?" (10/10)

This series has been GREAT so far, and I believe it really has the capacity to be the best yet!

OVERALL MARK: 52/60 *****

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on 5 May 2014
Delighted to finally complete my collection of Merlin DVD's that I received quickly and were as described from a seller that I can recommend. I am looking forward to watching them all again, but if I can put the family through (including my Hubby!) the ending again I really do not know. We all cries buckets the first time round. As a person who has a great interest in the Arthurian saga this series was a delight to see, combining stories from old to medieval tales and I thought it was very well done and the acting just got better and better through out. Utterly devastated when it ended. A huge well done to the BBC and all involved.
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on 8 January 2013
The series continues and enters a more mature level of drama...The acting is amazing--Colin Morgan and Bradley James shine in this series--they deserve to win a BAFTA for this! The story is closer to the legend than ever before but there are many unexpected twists throughout...It was great to see Angel Coulby with an intersting story line this year. This was just part one of two parts of Merlin's final series...can't wait to see volume 2 and the final installment. I only wish they had continued with this show into a 6th and 7th series. I will miss it terribly when it is gone, but at least I will be able to re-watch it on DVD.
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on 2 August 2015
I miss Merlin. There was no sense of this being the final season and no winding down. If anything this final season ratcheted up the anticipation. Having watched it on TV I knew what the ending was going to be but it was wonderful to watch it again. The banter between Arthur and Merlin is cutting or funny. You can tell that Bradley and Colin were really good friends. Morgana is a wicked villain and Katie was having a ball playing her. In fact all the actors are great and you can get a definite sense that they are really enjoying themselves.
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on 11 December 2012
Another present for my Merlin mad niece. Recommend this product for any Merlin mad fans out there to buy it.
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on 29 December 2012
Yet another cracking series of Merlin. A pleasant change to more run of the mill tv programmes. The acting is excellent, the backdrops first rate and the story lines gripping. Once again good value and quick service make it an all round good package from Amazon.
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on 6 February 2013
We have followed this version of an old tale with great interest. Certainly it had more twists in the story line we thought was possible. The fact that they added to the tale was a very nice surprise. The ending was well done with the final scene created an opportunity for a sequel in a different time setting, well done. Not
Sure tHat the casting was as good as it might have been but it worked. If you have not seen it, do what we did each series we watched over two nights so the plots were fresh. Certainly would recommend it to those that love the Autherian tale.
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on 9 December 2012
This is an episode-by-episode review.

Episode 1: Arthur's Bane - Part 1
Not a fantastic start to the series, but still fairly good nevertheless. Three years on from the events of Series 4's end, Arthur has never felt stronger and more at piece with Merlin and Gwen by his side, and his Knights of the Round Table. It was fantastic to see the round table, and it shows just how much Camelot has changed over the years. This episode is very slow at times. And there is another character this series called ''Sefa'', and I was very annoyed how she was another traitor in Camelot, this is getting old now; in Series 3, Morgana was the traitor, in Series 4 it was Agraviane, and now it is her, I was really annoyed at that. The episode had a nice cliffhanger which involved the return of Mordred, falling nicely into the following episode. (7/10)

Episode 2: Arthur's Bane - Part 2
Following a decent build up, the resolution delivers nothing original. We have a nice surprise involving Mordred, which gets us thinking about what the future of Series 5 may hold, and we also have a relation to the events that tock place at the end of Series 4, and events that happened in-between series 4 and 5. However, this episode does not really go anywhere; at the end of the day, there is nothing new in this episode. The ending scene of the episode is one that has happened so many times before, the show is just not moving on. Katie McGrath is not a bad actor, she is outstanding as all the cast are, but she does not play ''evil'' brilliantly, and returned to her over acting pantomime performance this episode. Despite being flawed, this is still a decent episode that is enjoyable at times. (6/10)

Episode 3: The Death-Song of Uther Pendragon
I looked forward to this episode ever since I found out Anthony Head would be returning as a guest star (Anthony Head was a huge cast member in the first 3 series and had a shock ending in the 3rd episode of series 4 - ''The Wicked Day''). In this episode, Arthur is given a chance to speak to the dead, and he seeks the chance to speak to the person he misses above all others, his father, Uther Pendragon (who is Anthony Head's character). But little does Arthur realise that he does something that realises Uther's spirit so he can be a poltergeist and undo all of Arthur's changes to Camelot that he disagrees with. This is an amazing episode with lots of darkness, scenes that make us 'jump out of our seat', good pacing and slight elements humour that involves friendly banter between Arthur and Merlin. (10/10)

Episode 4: Another's Sorrow
This episode is one of the episodes that was an attempt to be a fantastic thrilling filler, and was actually a let down. How many times has this plot happened now: Morgana has yet another attempt on taking Arthur's life and claiming Camelot's throne for herself, and Merlin saves the day. This episode has very predictable events, which make the episode a lot less enjoyable. We see the return of Mithian (Series 4's ''The Hunters Heart''), but she was not a fantastic character. The episode is very predictable, and it is yet another one where Merlin saves Arthur from Morgana, and Morgana is defeated but not killed off. Despite this, it is an okay episode, the episode has a slight spice of humour, and the ending of the episode which states that Morgana is not yet Merlin equal, but she is still very powerful is quite chilling. It was also good to see a truce between Arthur and Odin, as the two have been huge enemies since the second series, but other than that, this was a failed filler which came to no development at all. (5/10)

Episode 5: The Disir
A fantastic episode, which is in my opinion, is not as quite as good as episode 3 again, but it is still a huge improvement on the preceding episode. This is mainly centred around Arthur's views on magic. The episode featured great acting, especially from the three guest stars as The Disir, along with Sarah Parish, I think these actors are the best Guest Stars that Merlin has had. Unlike preceding episodes, this episode has a lot focused on Mordred. All in all, the episodes storyline is Merlin trying to stop awful events from coming to pass, but all he does is make sure that they do come to pass. This is a bit too similar to an episode from the third series, ''The Crystal Cave''. But this is still a great, well paced episode that has a chilling ending, which makes us think about the future of this series. (9/10)

Episode 6: The Dark Tower
An amazing episode which is as good as, or maybe even better than episode 3. This episode is even darker than the opening 2-Parters to the third and forth series. This episode is mainly centred around Gwen, who spends most of this episode locked in The Dark Tower by Morgana, there is also a bigger part for the Knights of the Round Table. The acting was phenomenal, especially from Angle Coulby's, her acting in this episode is absolutely brilliant, her golden episode. The episode has unpredictable events that lead to very unexpected events and a great cliffhanger shaping the next episode. After the series' best episode, can it continue on such a high note? (10/10)

47/60 - So far, I have very much enjoyed Series 5, but I must admit, I am not enjoying this series quite as much as I have previous series. But this show is still a pleasure to watch.

The adventure continues...
''A Lesson in Vengeance''
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on 24 December 2012
I liked a lot the 1st part of the 5th serie "Merlin" full of surprises and new developments. The good turns bad and the bad seems good. The characters are bobbing up and down in the waves of their desires, duties and destiny and we never know what will be the new trick of their fate...Their fates are the writers of the serie and they are very clever... I am Impatient to see the 2cd part.
In France, in university, I studied the old french langage with the roud table ' Knights. They are myths and legends that means they can come back in all times of history with the shapes, the behaviours and the adventures that we can appreciate in our own time. It is what did the BBC that, from my point of view, is the best in making series that enjoy kids and adults in a same time.
All along the series, I was always curious of what the writers do with the legend. I was often surprised and I liked that! For example, I could never have imagine Mordred like that! This charactere is a great "trouvaille", a great success. Bravo!
I dream of a spin-off for adults, epic and comic.....
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on 11 November 2012
ARTHUR'S BANE - PART ONE: A strong opener with amazing visuals. Liam Cunningham (Game of Thrones) is a great guest star and steals most of the scenes he is in. Gwen has come far in the three-year gap between Series Four and Five. She appears to be much stronger and confident in her role as Queen - at one point even proving that she can make tough decisions when Arthur is away from Camelot. The episode ends on a great cliffhanger which leads nicely into Part Two. (4/5)

ARTHUR'S BANE - PART TWO: This episode follows on from the previous and like episode one, does not disappoint. The visuals are just as good and in some parts better than the first and the fight scenes are great. This episode also sees the return of Aithusa (from Series Four) and also another character who plays a huge part in Arthur's fate... Morgana appears to be slightly psychotic and in one particular scene shows how much she despises Arthur. There is no going back for her character, who appears to be a cat with nine lives. The ending is a huge surprise and will get viewers excited for the rest of the series. (4/5)

THE DEATH SONG OF UTHER PENDRAGON: Whenever a TV series has a really strong opening story, the following episode sometimes seems to be a little bit of a letdown. Episode Three however proves that this never has to always be the case. Anthony Head (Uther Pendragon) obviously returns as a guest star and proves that just because his titular character is dead, doesn't mean he cannot be a threat. Arthur, being a very different king to his father, has brought more peace to Camelot and even allowed men who are not born noble to become knights. This would always have shocked Uther and viewers are able to see his disgust. Uther's words at times are truly harsh to the son he craved so much. Certain scenes feel slightly like Poltergeist and as such may not be suitable for young children. Like the previous two episodes the ending is almost the best part. For those waiting for the big reveal this will surely come as a nice surprise. On the other hand, with this only being the third episode, the truth is not revealed just yet. But how much longer can it be? (5/5)

ANOTHER'S SORROW: Not as good as the previous episode but not terrible. Princess Mithian returns (Series Four), and is being used (and at times tortured) by Morgana. Morgana appears to have advanced her magic in this episode as she spends the majority of it under the effects of an ageing spell. Viewers will know that Merlin is also able to do this but in the beginning needed a potion to reverse it. Morgana on the other hand does not - proving she is moving ever closer to being Merlin's equal. (3/5)

THE DISIR: This episode, in my opinion, was a slight improvement on episode four however was again not as good as episode three. This episode appears to be borrowing from Shakespeare, as the enemy feels like Macbeth's three witches. Unlike the previous two episodes we finally get an episode that focuses on Mordred. He has a huge scene half way through and will make viewers question just whose side he is on. If it's not Arthur than Mordred is a great actor. This episode also has a twist similar to that from "The Crystal Cave" (Series Three) which has huge concequences on Arthur's fate. There is also a moment in this episode that will shock the viewers and possibly make them go "what????". (4/5)

THE DARK TOWER: Finally! An episode as good as, or possibly better, than episode three. This appears to be the darkest episode of Merlin yet and shows why the show is now being shown only slightly before the watershed. This is a very dark episode which at times is too dark for younger viewers. This episode belongs to Angel Coulby (Gwen) who gives her best performance yet. Having been kidnapped by Morgana, she spends the majority of the episode locked inside the titular "Dark Tower" which strikes fear in the hearts of knights. This episode sees the return of psychological torture in the form of the mandrake root. Like most of the series so far, this has an ending which is totally unexpected - in lots of ways. (5/5)

Camelot's great trial has begun and with the die cast, expect the unexpected. This series has been truly amazing so far, and if episodes 7-13 continue in this way than this will easily be the best yet. With the fifth series confirmed to be the last - grab a copy of this amazing DVD. Well worth buying for any Merlin fan!
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