Popular BBC One fantasy series Merlin has been confirmed as ending after its current fifth series, according to the broadcaster, effectively dismissing some of the previous rumours about the show hinted at the San Diego Comic-Con this summer.
While the current season still has 3 episodes left to air, the show will be concluded with a two-part Christmas special, which will have brought the total episode count for the 2008-starting fantasy to 65 by the end of its run in 2012.
Merlin’s co-creators Johnny Capps and Julian Murphy confirmed the news in a joint statement, as they summarised the impact of the medieval-set series: “This is the series where the storylines truly reach their apex. 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 to a conclusion the battle for Camelot. We’d like to thank the amazing cast and crew for their professionalism and dedication, the BBC, FME and all of our partners globally for their incredible support and encouragement across the last five series. But chiefly, our thanks go to Merlin’s remarkable and loyal audience around the world for their enthusiasm for the characters and Camelot universe.”
BBC One’s channel controller Danny Cohen added of future plans for Merlin’s timeslot and the legacy it leaves behind: “Merlin’s mix of magic, adventure and humour quickly became a hit with BBC One audiences and has continued to thrill families over the last five years on Saturday nights. I admire the creators’ decision to end Merlin on a high, but also know that we will miss it in the BBC One schedule. On behalf of BBC One I would like to thank Shine and all those involved in the making of the show both on and off screen. I hope fans will tune in over the coming weeks to see the spectacularly dramatic final episodes, and we have ambitious plans for new drama in the Saturday evening slot in 2013.”
Merlin is obviously a very popular show and has plenty more material that can be used for future shows or even a movie. Let’s hope the powers that be can get together, see the fans reactions and make it happen.