Saturday, 21 September 2013

From Good to Evil: character progression in the best way. MERLIN EDITION

From reading and watching a lot of Tv and books I have got quite a collection of opinions on characters. In previous posts I have listed my favourite characters including all time favourite characters from books, favourite characters from TV/film and favourite characters from Harry Potter, however, in this post I am going to be discussing the character progressions in BBC's Merlin, these are the character's that I just love to hate. *All these opinions are based from the characters in Merlin, the BBC show, not the actual Arthurian legend*

First up we have Morgana Pendragon. In the first two series Morgana is as nice as a button, sure she's slightly spoilt but that just comes with the territory of being a King's ward. She cares about her friends would do anything to protect them. A great example of this is when she, along with Gwen and Arthur helped Merlin save his home village from bad guys steeling their harvest; she didn't have to do it but she did out of the goodness of her heart and because of the love she had for her friends. They cared greatly for her and in return she did the same for them, no matter what class you came under.

Until Morgana realised that she had magic, she was completely golden-hearted, but I believe that it was the fear of her magic that turned her evil. She was scared and because of Uther's harsh ruling and complete out-law of magic she felt she was completely alone, little did she know that Merlin had also felt the same feelings as she had but it was forbidden to ever be spoken of. So in haste of her being completely terrified and so confused she turned to the only person who was prepared to tell her that she wasn't a freak and that magic was nothing to be scared of and that was of course, Morgause. Sadly Morgause trained Morgana into thinking that if you had magic then everyone around you should be afraid of you and should be at your mercy, she showed her the evil of the magic world, but of course, Morgana had never been able to see the beauty of using magic for good and so I believe she never really thought any different about using magic for anything other than to get her own way. I think she also thought that who was she to doubt the only person who treated her no differently but in fact with greater love than before despite her magic.

However, I believe that the true culprit that pushed Morgana further away and further into the evil witch that she became is Uther. Uther was also mad with fear over magic and would not accept that it wasn't just used for evil, therefore he corrupted Morgana's mind right from the start before she even realised she had magic, so when she woke up one night with her curtains on fire, of course she would be led to believe that she was the one in the wrong. Morgana's greatest weakness was loneliness and that is what pushed her to becoming evil, once she was evil, her thirst for power over rode any kind of emotion that she possessed other than anger. It does truly break my heart because her character progression is one probably greater than Merlin's himself, she literally flipped the side of the coin throughout the show and in the end she died alone instead of being surrounded by her friends and family, even Morgause, who trained her and loved her was not there to see her into the other world. Morgana Pendragon's character is probably the most saddening in the entire series and her end is horrific, because at least Arthur died in Merlin's arm, in the arms of someone who protected him and loved him, but Morgana, as I said died completely alone, in the presence of a self-made enemy.

Next up is Mordred. The first time we see Mordred, he is a child, and a hurt child at that. He is the one who tells Merlin of his Druid name and talks to him telepathically. However, Merlin finds out from the Dragon that Mordred is Arthur's doom and that Merlin should try his best not to help him get out of the citadel, however, obviously this is Merlin we are talking about and he cannot let an innocent person suffer, he ignores the Dragons warnings. Despite helping Mordred, Merlin remains in suspicion of him when he returns, especially in series 5.

Mordred, in series five, now an adult gets knighted as a Knight of Camelot. Despite Merlin always being wary of him, Mordred seems nothing but devoted to being the truest knight he could be, he risks his life several times for Arthur and the other Knights. He keeps Merlin's secret which also happens to be a shared secret, something that they both have, away from being noticed or found. He is literally the model of a perfect knight. So what went wrong?

Arthur is partly to blame for Mordred's fate because he didn't take into account how much Mordred loved Kara, I think Arthur could have handled the situation a bit better, but he did what he did because of the laws put into place by his own father. Mordred did what he did out of spite, he told Morgana, Merlin's true identity to cause pain to Arthur, however, I don't think he ever thought it would be him who was to kill Arthur, until it was too late to back out, or maybe, just maybe he really is that evil and it was planned all along. However, in my opinion I don't believe once he did the deed of killing Arthur, a man who up until the point of Kara had shown him nothing but friendship and loyalty, that he felt any happiness from it but only remorse and you can see that on his face in the Battle of Camlann. Another part of Mordred that led him to eventually becoming evil was that it was always his destiny, and like Merlin learns, you can never truly escape your destiny. Mordred is such an interesting character because you can never really tell if he has always been evil or if he truly was good. Its hard to sum up Mordred's character, because he is just that complex but I think that a quote from Harry Potter is best to use to describe him "We've all got both light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on." Mordred unfortunately chose to act on the bad side and ended up dead and killing Arthur as a result.

Also can I just say how amazing was both Alex Vlahos and Katie McGrath's acting is in Merlin. Seriously it was completely top notch, you can just see from the bottom picture of Alex the emotion he had when he played Mordred, it was truly amazing to watch. Katie McGrath's Morgana slowly spiralling down into the depths of evil and her acting just gives me chills. It makes their character progressions so much harder to bear because of the ability and talent that they had with their characters. Congrats BBC on yet more insanely good casting choices.

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