Merlin – Is Arthur finally getting in touch with his feelings? (Originally for Clique Clack Television, co-written with Ruby T.)

Julia: As awesome as coming in right at the beginning of a big fight is, I have to question a few things. One, why is the dragon attacking Camelot if it wants Arthur to become the once and future king? How’s Arthur supposed to become king if everyone’s dead? Or if he’s dead? And furthermore, why are they shooting at a dragon with flaming arrows? I get that it looks cool, but the dragon breathes fire. I think that trumps a little bit of burning kindling. I’m starting to think that Uther had the right idea, locking that dragon up.

Ruby: Perhaps this is the origin of the saying, “You can’t fight fire with fire.” I don’t know if the dragon actually wanted Arthur to become king of Camelot — he was just sweet-talking Merlin in order to get out of those chains. Here’s what stood out to me from that opening scene — Arthur’s big inspirational speech to his men was, “Hold firm! Tonight is not your night to die! I will make sure of that.” Yes, he will make sure of that … just like he did for all the other red shirts who got killed last week. When he said that, his knights probably just rolled their eyes. At least by the end of the episode, Arthur obtained a more realistic view — he admitted to his knights that their chances of surviving were slim. He’s learning to be more honest with people. I mean, think of it — he even broached the subject of feelings with Merlin!

Julia: I cannot be the only one who went, “Oh, Arthur!” in that scene at the inn. The whole “I know I’m a prince so we can never be friends” thing was just so, so sad. Just imagine him, all little and growing up with everyone fake-fawning over him and no one being honest and no friends at all, not until Merlin comes, and then he’s too emotionally constipated to do anything but drive Merlin mad and make his life a living hell because he has feelings. Feelings! Arthur, this is why I can never hate you no matter how much of a jerk you are. Because deep down inside, you have a soft, marshmallowy center that’s full of love and fuzzy bunnies and rainbows and all you want is to give Merlin a big old hug. Don’t lie. You know you do.

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