I wrote about it very hard The Winter KingMGM+’s adaptation of Bernard Cornwell’s Chronicles of the Warlords Books. So far I’ve felt that the series has strayed too far from the books. I felt they botched the dramatic moments that were supposed to delight the audience, introduced the characters too early, and in the case of Merlin, took a character that jumped off the page and turned him straight from central casting into one Milquetoast mentor stereotype.
Also, the cinematographers keep doing this thing where the characters look sharp and clear in the middle of the shot, but the background looks completely out of focus. It’s incredibly annoying. I’ve got my eye on you…(checks IMDb)…Ask Foss and Stephan Pehrsson. Stop it.
But the last episode, where Arthur falls in love with his future wife Guinevere, was pretty good, and this new one is even better. Is The Winter King Can you finally find eight episodes in a ten-episode season? Better late than never.
Review: The Winter King Episode 8
Episode 8 is divided into several stories, all of which are interesting. In the first arc, Guinevere attempts to ingratiate himself with the other prominent members of Arthur’s court, including his sister Morgan. Remember: Guinevere is basically a nobody that Arthur married instead of the girl he was supposed to marry as part of a political alliance, which is why some people hold a grudge against her. Morgan gives her the cold shoulder and clearly questions Arthur’s wisdom in marrying her, but she’s still surprisingly lenient with her brother. She later tells Derfel that Arthur usually makes the right decision, so she will try to support his decision to marry Guinevere.
But I don’t know, man: Arthur clearly screwed up here, as Morgan learns at the end of the episode, when King Gorfydd, the father of the girl Arthur was supposed to marry, crucifies Arthur’s advisor Bishop Bedwin in front of Morgan and Derfel. Is there, to negotiate with Gorfydd in Arthur’s place? The scene is a little theatrical – there’s a lot of screaming and whining, and Aneirin Hughes plays Gorfydd a little too demonstratively slimy – but we get the picture: it’s Gorfydd not pleased that his daughter Ceinwyn was passed over. He sees it as a stain on his honor. It’s extremely Walder Frey by game of Thrones-typical behavior.
A large portion of this episode is devoted to questioning Arthur’s pedigree as a modern man before his time in backward medieval Britain. The reason Arthur can’t go to Powys to see Gorfydd is because he has to go to Isca to deal with Cadwy, who has declared Isca an independent state. This will not be enough for Arthur, who is trying to unite the British tribes against the invading Saxons. During a well-choreographed sword fight, Cadwy questions Arthur’s intentions. Does he really want unity or does he just want power?
Was Arthur also right to marry Guinevere for love, or did he put his personal feelings above the well-being of his people? Because right there it looks as if there would be a civil war rather than a united front against the Saxons. This all gets under Arthur’s skin, and perhaps it should. He may be the most forward-thinking person ever, but he can still make serious mistakes.
The power of magic
Another consequence of Arthur’s actions: Nimue is on the warpath. In the final episode, the Honorable Bishop Bedwin refused to marry Arthur and Guinevere as it would amount to a blessing to Arthur after he broke his oath to marry Ceinwyn. But Arthur Really wanted to marry Guinevere, so he enlisted the help of Sansum, a priest of a much lower caliber.
And now Arthur owes this car a favor. Samsun, fanatical about pagans, wants to build a church near Avalon, the site of Merlin and Nimue’s pagan refuge, and Arthur finds it difficult to say no. I did I wonder why Arthur couldn’t allow Samsun to build his church but forbid him from building it near Avalon, but there’s more drama that way so we’ll let it go.
Nimue, a pagan extremist if ever there was one, isn’t happy about this. She puts on her best wood spirit clothing and curses Samsun and his followers: if they continue building their church, they will rot from the inside out. And then it starts to rain and the next morning three of Samsun’s men are seriously ill.
Did Nimue poison these men? Did their pagan gods really heed their call for help? Do people in the Middle Ages just get sick and now everyone looks to chance and sees divine intervention? For once In its stupid life, the series lets the mystery sink in, which is far more intriguing than if it had explained it.
What I like most about Cornwell’s books is how well they sell the idea of the power of magic. No one lights fire with their mind or anything, but in a world where everyone believes in the gods – including Christians, a little, even though they may protest – people who claim to speak for the gods, like Merlin, have and Nimue, power because people listen to them. It doesn’t matter if their magic is “real” because of their control over people who do think it’s real, it’s real. This episode Finally I loved this idea and couldn’t be happier.
Also, it’s cool that Nimue threw snakes at the priests. Anyway, Samsum calls Arthur to mediate this dispute, and while we don’t get confirmation, it sounds like he thinks Nimue poisoned the priests, which means she’s in trouble.
What connects all of the storylines in this episode is that they’re all about dealing with the consequences of Arthur’s stupid decision. Although the characters are spread out geographically, they are thematically connected. The episode never felt aimless; it always felt like it was going somewhere.
So I liked it, although I wouldn’t blame people if they swore off the show at that point; The first half of the season in particular was pretty tough. Can the series redeem itself in the final two episodes? Check back.
The winter bullet points
- The episode begins with a sex scene between Arthur and Guinevere. It’s important to show that the two are newly in love, but I don’t think the show has enough tact and skill to keep the scene from feeling cheesy. It kind of feels like softcore from the 80s.
- While this isn’t scientific, I can’t help but notice that the show is better when Merlin isn’t around. Read my thoughts on this disaster here.
- In Powys, Derfel and Ceinwyn share a moment that book readers know foreshadows things to come.
- Pretty much everything in Powys is made up for the series in this episode. It all works, but it feels a little melodramatic.
Episode Grade: B+
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- Published 10/22/2023 at 9:00 PM CDT
- Last updated on 10/22/2023 at 9:00 PM CDT
Source : winteriscoming.net