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Merlin Season Two Season Finale Preview
To Stop the Great Dragon’s Fiery Assault,Merlin Must Find ‘The Last Dragonlord’ in the Season Finale of MERLIN on Syfy
The friendship between Arthur and Merlin – as well as the strength of Camelot itself – is put to the test as they search for a way to stop a vicious attack by the Great Dragon in “The Last Dragonlord,” the season two finale of MERLIN, premiering at 10 p.m. Friday, July 2 on Syfy.
The Great Dragon, finally freed by Merlin’s own hand, descends on Camelot with fiery rage and pitiless intensity. As the castle crumbles, Arthur’s knights cannot hold out. Only a Dragonlord can kill a dragon – and Uther wiped them all out years ago. Or did he?
Gaius admits one such man could still be alive … a man with a mysterious link to Merlin’s past. The young warlock must set forth with Arthur to find Camelot’s potential savior before it’s too late.
Amid the flames, flying dragons and swordplay, “The Last Dragonlord” also features a storyline that touches the very heart of the series: the burgeoning friendship between Arthur and Merlin. Both Bradley James, who plays Arthur, and Colin Morgan, who portrays Merlin, say they have enjoyed bringing these iconic characters into new perspective for today’s audience.
“At first glance, you might not think that Merlin and Arthur have a lot in common, but you gradually see that they have a real connection,” Morgan says. “They both have lost a parent, and they share a past. It’s lovely to see these little moments between them where there are clearly deeper things going on.
“There is more to it than mere joshing,” he adds. “What’s great is that all the relationships in MERLIN could just be on the surface and simply for entertainment, but we don’t insult viewers by presenting them with caricatures – people do care about these characters. There’s a bit of depth to it all.”
James says, “It’s important that Arthur remains unaware of Merlin’s magic powers, but he is starting to trust Merlin an awful lot more. He maintains his status as Merlin’s superior, but is allowing him to seep into his consciousness a great deal more. It’s vital that Arthur learns from Merlin – or else the show has no point. They go through a lot together in the second season, and their relationship gets stronger. They’re both striving for a better Camelot. Merlin’s becoming Arthur’s friend as opposed to his servant.
Morgan is particularly happy to present these legendary characters as the same age, as opposed to traditional tales of Camelot where Merlin is presented as a wise old adviser to a younger Arthur.
“We have a completely different dynamic,” Morgan says. “People enjoy seeing us play with ideas of status. Merlin is a supposedly lowly servant who has the power to destroy kingdoms. There are also constant references to the oblivious Arthur getting all the credit that should go to Merlin. There’s a lot of fun to be had there. It’s about taking something people thought they knew and changing their view of it.”
To capture all the mystical creatures coming and going through Camelot, green-screen technology is prevalent on the set of MERLIN. Morgan admits he was initially a “newbie” to the filming technique, but has since earned an “honors degree in green screen.”
“There are lots of green-screen creatures in season two – giant scorpions and giant rats, for instance – and, of course, there is lots of green screen with the Dragon,” Morgan says. “What was terrific was that in the second season, I recorded my scenes in a studio with John [Hurt, who voices the Dragon]. That was great, because we could really collaborate.”
James is having an equal amount of fun allowing his “child-like imagination” to run free on the green screen. “You’re in a room with a green blanket surrounded by a lot of blokes scratching their beards and drinking coffee while you’re supposed to be being chased by a mythological creature or fighting thin air. You have to escape into a world that you create for yourself. You also have to be quite prepared to make a fool of yourself. You can actually enjoy it once you get past your inhibitions.”
Airing in 180 countries, MERLIN has gone far beyond its green-screen effects and magical background to find a loyal audience in virtually every corner of the world, eclipsing all boundaries and languages. Morgan and James chalk up that global success to one simple strategy: tell good stories.
“MERLIN is pure escapism – it has great cross-generational and international appeal,” Morgan says. “As entertaining as they are, the stories really hit home – they deal with deep emotions and morals, too. It has real variety – a comic episode will be followed by a very serious one.”
Adds James: “MERLIN deals with subjects that everyone can relate to – love, death, honor, passion, betrayal. Other nations identify with the Arthurian legends. They see them and think, ‘That story inspires us.’ We’re very lucky that our show has been translated into so many different languages.”
“The Last Dragonlord,” the second season finale of MERLIN, debuts at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) Friday, July 2, only on Syfy. Follow the latest news on MERLIN at the Official Merlin page on Facebook.