It’s six plus years since Merlin finished (24th December 2012) and I still feel bereft for the end of a TV programme. Why is that? What did this TV show have that other shows didn’t have? Is it the actors, the locations, the sets, the directors, the production team, props, the crew? Yes, it’s all of those things, but I feel Merlin was more than a sum of its parts. This is what I think.
Merlin was partly filmed in the beautiful Chateau de Pierrefonds in France. The Chateau was open to the public as they filmed the Camelot scenes for the show. That meant we, the fans, could stand all day if wanted and watch the magic happen. I met many like-minded people through visiting the filming twice a year for three years. I remember a lot of laughter and chatter with newly discovered friends as we sat around waiting for the director to shout, “action.” Or sitting waiting for a car to arrive at the entrance to the chateau so we could glimpse the cast. Then, after the filming had finished for the day, we’d meet up for pizza or just to hang out. In the last couple of years many fans would wear cosplay, spending hours creating costumes to look like their favourite character.
Filming locations and the hunt for them became a big part of my life for years and still to this day, if we have time, we look for Merlin filming locations. This came about through the wonderful website, Merlin Locations, ran, and still run, by the lovely Julie Bozza. We spent weeks in Welsh forests, beaches, caves, or some far flung field.
Conventions and the Theatre. In the years that followed the end of Merlin many of the cast would attend conventions or walk the boards. I attended Colin Morgan’s, The Tempest, at the Globe so many times I forget now how many. And since then I have been to theatre performances to see Colin, Rupert, Alex, and Tomiwa. The “Knights” tend to attend Comic Cons and I have many autographs and photos from Rupert, Alex, Tom, and Owen. I do see at these various “Merlin connected” events fans from the Pierrefonds filming and it’s always nice to chat.
As a family we visit Pierrefonds every year on the way home from our skiing holiday. In February the Chateau is quiet and empty but it’s still a joy to walk its corridors.
So, yes, sadness for the loss of the TV show, but happiness for the way of life that continues around it.
I blog about MCM Birmingham HERE.