Lancelot is back! But now he’s bad, although for this Nice Girl that’s a really good thing. (Evil laugh)
In this new episode of Merlin, Morgana visits the Dochraid who advises her to visit the Pool of Nemhain, and to cast her magical coin in the depths of the still water for her wish would be granted. Morgana does what she is told and soon after, the water begins to bubble and out immerges a man who claims he is at her service.
When we last saw Lancelot, he walked through the veil between the living and the dead to save Camelot from the evil unleashed by Morgana. Hailed by SFX Magazine as “an extraordinary episode, bold, dark and sad,” “Lancelot du Lac” begins with the happiest of announcements: King Arthur asks for Guinevere’s hand in marriage. But the news reaches Morgana, who sees in Gwen her greatest threat to assuming the throne of Camelot. Morgana turns to the darkest of magic, necromancy, summoning the body of Sir Lancelot to do her bidding.
“We all have our secrets, and unfortunately for Guinevere, I know hers,” says Morgana when she learns of the engagement from duplicitous Agravaine. What Morgana knows is that, long before Arthur and Guinevere began their romance, Gwen lost her heart, at least momentarily, to Lancelot (played by Santiago Cabrera of Alcatraz and Heroes). As Morgana says: “Before she was Arthur’s, she was yours, Lancelot. You were her first love. And you will be her last.”
Dark and intense, often lushly romantic and achingly tragic, “‘Lancelot du Lac’ is one of the best episodes Merlin has ever produced,” writes Digital Spy, an assessment with which series executive producer and co-creator Johnny Capps says he agrees.
“There are lots of episodes I love in this season, but one of my absolute favorites is when Lancelot returns,” Capps says. “The mechanics of the storyline required quite a bit of working out, and we had lots of arguments along the way. But in the end, I was really pleased with the story, and I was very impressed with the central performances – they are absolutely superb. Santiago has turned into such a fine actor, and Bradley (James as Arthur) puts in a storming performance.”
The episode offers grand, sweeping passion – and stunning betrayal. As an actor, “Lancelot du Lac” provided memorable challenge, says Katie McGrath, who plays Morgana.
“It was the best script I’d ever read – an extremely fairy-tale-like story that captures the Arthur-Guinevere-Lancelot love triangle, and also feels like a true ensemble piece,” she explains.
Then, McGrath adds with a laugh and a smile worthy of Morgana herself: “Plus, you get to see Santiago Cabrera naked, which is wonderful.” She pauses. “Better yet, naked and under my control!” Now you’re talking!
“Lancelot du Lac,” an all-new episode of MERLIN, airs Friday, March 2, at 10 p.m. ET/PT only on Syfy. All three seasons of MERLIN are now available on DVD and on iTunes. Be sure to follow the latest news on MERLIN at the Official Merlin page on Facebook.
Photo Credit: © Shine Ltd. & FremantleMedia Enterprises.