In a shock announcement released yesterday at midnight, the BBC confirmed to stunned fans nationwide that Merlin will culminate this year. Currently broadcasting on BBC1, the fantasy drama’s fifth season has focused on the titular Arthurian warlock’s battle to save his king from the threat of a hidden enemy glimpsed in his visions. The future of the show had seemed pretty uncertain for fans, as the stars who played Elyan and Leon confirmed on Twitter earlier this year that they were heading onto new projects, but we now know for certain the truth about what’s coming.
This fifth season will mark the last run of the programme, with five episodes still left to air including a two-part finale that will feature the fabled Battle Of Camelot. We’ve still got the Gwen possession arc to wrap up this week, but with Morgana on the hunt for Emrys’ identity in Episode 10 and Mordred’s allegiances tested to their greatest brink in Episode 11, it seems that the series really will not let up in its final moments. “This is the series where the storylines truly reach their apex,” says co-creator Johnny Capps, “We always felt the story of the legend was best told across five series, leading to a spectacular finale that draws on the best-known elements of this much-loved story and brings a conclusion to the battle for Camelot.”
All of these reveals don’t necessarily mean a definitive end for the world of Merlin- the Facebook game has now been fully unveiled, and there could still be a proposed movie trilogy in the offing starting next year. We’ll have more details on those projects and more soon, but for now at least we’ll say a sad but well-timed farewell to one of the greatest family dramas of recent years. Merlin continues this Saturday at 8pm on BBC1 with With All My Heart, and runs until Christmas, with details of the two-part finale’s broadcast schedule still to be announced.