Guilty Pleasure 9: Merlin

Caitlin Saunders 26 November 2013

With November waning, the delights of Christmas TV approach: soon we’ll all be cringing at comedy specials, swooning over snow-caked movies, and sobbing into our shirtsleeves as our favourite characters die horribly, only moments away from salvation.Well, perhaps that last one is just me.

For five years, BBC Merlin was my go-to guilty pleasure. Baggy chain mail, predictable plot lines, ample bosoms: it had everything. But what started as a little show with dodgy CGI and an excruciatingly upbeat soundtrack culminated in a classic Arthurian ending of destruction and despair.

Memories of Arthur and Merlin’s emotional final scenes will be rife this Christmas; their boyish features and scarcely-masked romantic tension were, after all, so much more endearing than dry tales of a bearded king. The question is whether you’ll be digging out your DVDs and reliving the close of a drama which ultimately was, for all its failings, completely lovable, or whether you’re content to leave Arthur at the bottom of his lake. I for one will be getting my tissues ready.