Where are those recaps?

I blame Downton Abbey.  And February.  Gosh, I find all sorts of things to blame for my laziness.

Robert and Matthew walk on the Downton grounds.

Downton Abbey: blessing or curse?

Actually, I’m making a few changes.  First of all, I won’t be covering Merlin anymore.  I’ve had a hard time getting interested in the story this year.  So after a few weeks of trying to get up the energy to even watch an episode, I’ve decided to drop it from the lineup.

Secondly, I’ve been on a Downton Abbey kick.  I’m not sure why, given that I think it’s quite overrated.  But like many things that aren’t good for you, I’ve become hooked.  And like that car wreck on the highway, I can’t look away.

So, this is just a long-ish way of saying I’ll be back with reviews for Supernatural and Dragons: Riders of Berk later this week.  And next week I’ll get caught up with Once Upon a Time.

One other thing.  You may have noticed I changed my rating scheme from 5 stars to 4 stars.  I found 5 stars gave me too many choices, not a good thing for someone as indecisive as I.  Also, sometimes the star ratings are not properly sized.  If that’s the case, just refresh your browser.  (In the meantime, I’ll be troubleshooting.)

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Merlin: The Death Song of Uther Pendragon (503)

The theme of this episode felt very much like that of this week’s Scandal (“A Criminal, a Whore, an Idiot, and a Liar”):  No matter how important and powerful you are, there’s always your father to tell you you’re an ass.

The ghost of Uther Pendragon returns to "save" Camelot.

Uther Pendragon, back from the dead.

All other things aside, it was nice to see Anthony Head in the credits and on the screen again.

If you take out all those suspenseful scenes leading up to a “jump scare” (you know, where Percival is looking around the armory, or Gwen is walking down the hall), the episode was what?  About 10 minutes long?  Ok, I exaggerate.  But it’s times like these I’m glad I watch the show on a time delay.  (It’s mostly so I can fast-forward through the commercials, but the FF button got an extra work out this week.)

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Merlin: Arthur’s Bane, Part 2 (502)

Well, that’s better.  Somewhat.  For the record, I got Arthur’s Bane wrong, but at least I was in good company.  Merlin thought it was Mordred, too.

This episode gets 3 stars.At the end of Part 1, Arthur and Merlin were taken prisoner by the bounty hunter Ragnor, along with Mordred.  They’re now making their way to Ismere, Morgana’s stronghold.  [I don’t know where they filmed these scenes, but it’s obviously very cold. Colin Morgan’s face is very red.]  Of course, Arthur and Merlin escape; and Arthur kills all in pursuit except Mordred, to Merlin’s chagrin.

Aithusa, the white dragon, visits Morgana in the night.

Aithusa, the white dragon, visits Morgana in the night.

No Kilgharrah this week, but we do have little Aithusa, the dragon Merlin watched hatch—and named—last season.  She was last seen rescuing Morgana at the end of the season 4.  Now she’s apparently Morgana’s pet.  And she’s injured.  Nooo!  What happened?

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Merlin: Arthur’s Bane, Part 1 (501)

This is to be Merlin‘s final season.  There could be much to look forward to, but unfortunately I read comments from the UK viewers, who’ve already finished the series.

King Arthur and Queen Guinevere stand before the fabled Round Table.

King Arthur, Queen Guinevere, and the Round Table

Season 5 opens three years after the end of season 4.   These have apparently been Camelot’s golden years, which I guess means this season will deal with the downfall of Arthur. I suppose it makes for more drama, but I’d like to have seen at least a smidgeon of paradise.

I don’t care for these “epic” two part season openers and finales that have become the norm for Merlin in the past three years.  But I suppose it’s fitting, given the darker course the series has taken.

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The Five Most Facinating Characters

Who are my 5 most fascinating characters?

The end of the year brings with it a plethora of “best of” and “worst of” lists, and SciFi Chick(s) is not above such frivolity.  But instead of the mundane “best and worst of,” how about a look at some of the most intriguing characters on sci fi television?

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