After becoming addicted to this after the first series, I didn't originally know if a second series would be as good, but if anything its even better. I have been told that the viewer ratings weren't that great for this, but that may have been due to the BBC endlessly changing the times it was shown.
I am still amazed that this works at all, after all there is a tradition of Arthurian stories getting mixed up and altered over the years, but this one is so original. And thankfully, unlike the dire Robin Hood, this is highly watchable and entertaining. There are some great cameos in this series, Charles Dance plays a witchfinder, Emilia Fox is in chainmail (who could believe that a woman could look sexy in all that metal? But Emilia shows that it can be done), and Sarah Parish is absolutely fantastic as a troll.
With Merlin having to still keep his magic a secret, Morgana finding out what she really is, and Mordred vowing vengeance on Merlin there is more than enough action here. On top of that Uther falling in love with a troll due to magic, and Arthur having a love spell placed on him there is bound to be trouble and comedy in store. Arthur professes his feelings for Guenivere and starts to learn more about humility and compassion, whilst Merlin has to keep his promise to let the dragon go free, and he also finds out who his father is. Merlin also starts to see that his powers are greater than he could have first suspected and that he must use them wisely.
Why this works so well is that it mixes drama and action (with great effects) with a touch of humour, and it doesn't try to lay down some kind of code for behaviour, although with its depictions of chivalry, honour, truth, humility and compassion it does show an ideal of how we should all behave. The Arthurian legends have always been popular, probably due to the things I have mentioned, but it somehow goes beyond that, after all what boy wouldn't want to be a world famous knight, and what girl wouldn't want to be rescued by a knight on horseback?
All in all then this is another great series of Merlin, and I can't wait until the third, that is great for all the family to watch.