Every once in a while, the writers of Merlin sit down, take a coffee break (or maybe they break for tea, I don’t know, they’re British) and go, “Oh, right, during our trajectory of darker and more mature, we forgot we were supposed to be a kids’ show, didn’t we?” I blame those sorts of revelations for the reason we get episodes like this. Not that it was terrible, mind you, but it just wasn’t the usual Merlin fare. It wasn’t quite … oh, how about Ruby and I break it down for you.
Julia: So I remember that sometimes, when I was reading the Harry Potter books, Harry would seem irredeemably stupid. I honestly could not believe that he’d stayed alive that long when he was incapable of noticing how often people wanted to kill him. And I was totally convinced that there was no way a fantasy hero could get any dumber than Harry Potter, until Merlin came along. Oh, Merlin. You are adorable. You looked extra adorable this episode when the writers let you smile and stuff instead of being in constant kicked-puppy agony. But by god, you are dumb. Oh, look, you’re in a super secret room and there’s a moving, locked box! Yes, I think that there’s no way opening it could possibly go wrong. And then he was all, “Oh, woe is me, there’s a goblin running around Camelot.” Well whose fault is that, do you think?
If you’re reading this post, you probably just watched Bones, and if you just watched Bones, you’re probably feeling one of two ways:
b) Pissed off
And you’re feeling this way because, as always, Bones has managed, despite all the developments last season, to press the reset button on Booth and Brennan’s relationship. Oh, there’s been progress and character growth and everything else is moving along but Booth and Brennan. They are, for the next season, staying not together as far as we can tell. Which is why I’m reviewing Bones for the foreseeable future instead of Ivey.
I will admit that, in general, I am kind of a health nut. It’s mostly because I was raised to think that way, and I’m sure if my mother was reading this (hi, Mom!) she’d laugh at me, but it’s true. Compared to most people, or at least Americans, I’m a very healthy eater. Lots of fruit and veggies, all-natural and organic, as few byproducts and chemicals as possible, use olive oil instead of butter, leaner cuts of meat, rarely eat red meat – the whole shebang. But if there’s one area that I completely fail at eating healthy, it’s desserts.
Partially, it’s quantity. I just have a massive sweet tooth, and it’s hard to say no to a cupcake when the only interesting thing to eat besides that is a yogurt. And, partially, it’s the fact that when I eat dessert, it’s never healthy (for a dessert), like a piece of chocolate and fruit, or a light coffee cake. No. Whatever. I’m eating dessert. I want it to be bad for me. I want it to be terrible for me. That’s why I’m eating dessert. That, and because when food is bad for you, it’s kind of delicious.
My Merlin co-fanatic was busy with Yom Kippur, but she wanted to help out with this Merlin post — so she kindly summarized the entire episode in Julia-speak. I have inserted my thoughts, DVD-commentary-track style. Now visualize the scenes, and imagine my voice piping in at key moments.
(In a cave somewhere)
Dragon: Wakey wakey, young warlock.
Merlin: Ow. I hurt all over but strangely, I’m no longer dying.
Dragon: Yes, I magically did a charm that cures all your problems, because I’m a dragon.
Merlin: I would normally question the massive hand-waving going on here, but I’m a bit too busy being grateful you’re not trying to kill me.
Dragon: Well, you’ve tamed me now, Merlin. And you must remember, you are forever responsible for that which you have tamed….
Dragon: Oops, sorry. Wrong little prince. I get all mixed up, sometimes.
Merlin: I’m just going to go back to sleep and pretend this is the venom talking.
Just like Eminem, guess who’s back, back again? This season, Ruby and I just couldn’t wait for Merlin to come to American television. Who cares if Merlin is only airing in the UK? Enterprising fans such as ourselves are taking to the internet, and we can’t help but watch early. We’re weak-willed and desperate for more campy medieval romps filled with CGI monsters and battles between good and evil, what can we say.
Julia: I made a resolution to myself this season. “Self,” I said, “let’s try to remember, however much you think they are, Merlin and Arthur are not boyfriends, and they’re not flirting.” I decide that I’m going to banish the idea once and for all, and then … we open on Merlin and Arthur, looking yummy and slightly damp, and instead of going, “Oh, crap, there are thousands of dead people here,” they’re verbally pulling each other’s pigtails. Followed by them having a conversation about each other’s rear ends.
I think this show is mocking me.
Do not ever let it be said that I don’t respond to requests.
The day before I went on vacation I had an interview with Bradley James, which, as was mentioned in the transcript, had some technical difficulties. We had an audio delay, for one, and then in the middle of the interview our connection actually cut out in the middle. I had intended to do an audio recording with the transcript, but after all that I cut my losses, transcribed it the best I could (editing out all the “oh, no, I’m sorry, phone delay, you finish talking first” and “what? Can’t hear you, bad connections”), and put it up. And you all liked it! You really liked it! So I was pleased, and I went on vacation with no internet for a week.
And then I came back.
Now, as anyone who leaves their inbox for a while knows, you get a lot of e-mail when you’re gone for a week. When I came back, I had over 100 messages (which is a weirdly large number, even for someone who e-mails as much as I do), and not one, not two, but about ten of them (at least) were asking for the audio from the interview. So the moral of this story is this: nag, my friends, and ye shall receive. And don’t say I didn’t warn you about the audio delay.
Something that most people know about me is that I’m a compulsive cute-seeker. I don’t just like having things that are small and cute and adoring around me, I need it. I need something that loves me unconditionally, that cuddles with me, that I can take care of and fuss over and adore. If I don’t have something like that, I become tense and depressed very quickly. All my affection that needs to be expressed suddenly turns inwards and bounces nervously around going fuzzy fuzzy give me something fuzzy fuzzy fuzzy fuzzy.
The ideal candidate for this is a dog, obviously, and I adore dogs. My family shares a dog with our close friends who live a block away and like to go out nights and on long vacations – it’s like having joint custody, only we were never married and then divorced. I accost random passers-by in any location of they have a dog and instantly make friends. And if a dog isn’t handy, I always have my extremely pampered and beloved gerbil, or I’ll make do with people’s cats, bunnies, hamsters… whatever’s fuzzy and cuddly. I kind of draw the line at reptiles.
I’m also quite fond of children, though I don’t get contact with them very often, as it’s rude and slightly creepy to go up to someone and go “Hello, may I pet your child?” Plus, kids never seem to love me as much as I love them. They forget me, they forget my name, they’re more interested in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles… it’s not exactly fulfilling unless they’re yours, and I am so beyond not ready to pop out any the point is moot. Or was moot, until Elsa and Clio were born.