Stars: Jamie Campbell Bower, Joseph Fiennes, Eva Green, Claire Forlani
Writer: Louise Fox & Chris Chibnall
Director: Jeremy Podeswa
Network: Starz, airs Friday nights
Original Telecast: April 15th, 2010

I had someone complaining to me this week that they wanted CAMELOT to be more like SPARTACUS and less like THE TUDORS. I took offense to that since I really enjoy the series, and find it to be a nice balance of action, plot, and character to keep me interested and to keep the story moving forward at a nice pace. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love SPARTACUS, but I just don’t see CAMELOT ever being done that way. Arthurian legend is filled with myth, magic, and gallantry – not beheadings, crucifixions, and all around bloodbaths!

This latest episode “Lady of the Lake” is a dark journey into several characters’ souls. King Arthur (Jamie Campbell Bower) is still pining after Lady Guinevere (Tasmin Egerton), even though he is the man that officiated at her wedding. The moment they had on the beach lives in him and ignites a fire that is driving him to continue to pursue a married woman even at the cost of everything he has built for his people and his kingdom.

For her part Guinevere is still trying to dissuade Arthur and to convince him that the tryst meant less than nothing to her and he needs to leave her alone. There’s also a lovely scene between Arthur’s mother (Claire Forlani) and Arthur in which she confronts his obsession and ends up striking him and yelling at him that she will do anything in her power to stop him from destroying people’s lives the way his father did.

Merlin (Joseph Fiennes) has been a strong advocate of magical AA in this series. It is clear that magic is something dangerous that when used has a high cost to the user. Merlin has admonished Morgan (Eva Green) for her use of the magical arts, and he refuses to use magic himself – until now.

On a quest to find a new sword for Arthur, Merlin is sent to the master sword maker Brastias (Diarmaid Murtagh). To say that the two don’t see eye to eye and start off on the wrong foot is an understatement, and once the sword is finished Merlin loses his temper and gives into his primal urges and dispatches the man with mystical fire. He then has to pursue the man’s daughter Excalibur (Lauren Coe) to a lake where she has fled with the sword.

Merlin uses his powers again and accidently freezes the poor girl into the lake with her hand and the sword jutting from the water. Which was yet another example of a more practical (OK so it does involve some magic) version of where the sword came from. Merlin then allows himself to be beaten in a tavern by a couple of men to atone for his sins.

Morgan discovers that her price for magic is a literal death of the body and re-birth, which she is helped through by her mentor a dark Nun named Sybil (Sinead Cusack). While I can’t be completely certain this woman instructed Morgan in the dark arts, it does seem that she has an awfully involved understanding of them as she helps Morgan recuperate. This recovery oddly enough turns Morgan into the spitting image of Arthur’s mother, and we all know this won’t end well.

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CLICK HERE for AX’s exclusive interview with JOSEPH FIENNES

CLICK HERE for AX’s review of “The Sword and the Crown”

CLICK HERE for AX’s review of the first episode of CAMELOT

CLICK HERE for AX’s preview of CAMELOT

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