The creators of BBC fantasy-drama Merlin took the time near the end of their fifth season last year to announce that they had taken the show as far as they wanted to and as such wanted to end production before declining in quality, a decision which the broadcaster accepted in fairly good grace. Ending its story ambiguously, it is the sort of closure that many legacy-protecting fans of TV shows will applaud, but there are of course many who will be left disappointed at the fact there are no new episodes. However, this was nothing compared to the unexpected passion shown from many viewers of the series, who have commented in droves demanding the return of Merlin for a season 6.
The original story on World TV PC regarding the show’s cancellation, published on 26 November 2012, has racked up over 80 comments (87 at the time of writing), almost all of which are written by heartbroken fans longing for a renewal. Even more surprisingly, the story had been online for almost a month with only one low-key comment before the surge of further opinions arrived, presumably after a deluge of searches in reaction to the two-part final episode (“The Diamond of the Day”) concluded on 24 December.
The comments posted over the show have been almost unanimous in support for its renewal either with a sixth series or through a movie, and have continued throughout January as more territories around the world witness the finale.
World TV on PC reader Bilkar Singh wrote: “Can’t believe that this series 5 of Merlin will be its last, I was so looking forward to see the interaction between Merlin & Arthur in series 6, After Arthur eventually finds out Merlin’s secret, but it would seem that to be a dream, they should have drawn up a 10 year contract instead of 5 years, just incase the show was successful. Oh well, anyway I wish the cast & crew all the best for the future & hope there are plans for a movie in the pipeline in the near future.”
Fellow user ‘albian’ wrote: “It’s the best I have seen since Robin of Sherwood in the 1980′s. floods of tears here. I will be changing channels next week.”
Cheree commented: “I honestly thought the series will end on a better note, as well as the show actually being continued. This can NOT be the END!! Me and my fiance are really very disappointed!!”
“Please make the 6 Season, Merlin is so interesting I watch the series in English, even if I don’t understand everything, because I can’t wait until it is translated to my language,” wrote site user ‘Kristina from Germany’, while ‘Natalie’ added: “You’ve got to be kidding me this is ridiculous this show cannot end. It is one of few ‘clean’ shows left of tv and I would hate to see it end like this. Please bring it back it’s my favorite show, just one more season! and then another after that, then another and so on….”
Steve Sanger, the owner of World TV on PC, noted of the high interest in the fantasy-drama: “It is hard for production companies to find a golden nugget, and it seems crazy that when a hit show comes along that catches the public’s imagination – It gets cancelled.”
Having began life on BBC1 in 2008, Merlin ended on 65 episodes and 5 seasons, with the final installment reaching 7.8m viewers in its home UK market. While it has been suggested that there are talks from the BBC to renew the show, will such a move become a reality, or will the many disappointed viewers have to accept the news and move on?
First airing in 2008 on BBC1, Merlin is a popular TV fantasy-drama that stars Colin Morgan as ‘Merlin’ and Bradley James as ‘Arthur Pendragon’, in a story that is a reimagining of classic Arthurian legends. The show ran for five seasons and 65 episodes, averaging an audience of 7.13m in its final season of BBC1 broadcasts in 2012.