Season 1, Ep 2, Aired 9/27/08
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  • Episode Description
  • A knight named Valiant arrives in court to compete in a sword-fighting tournament. Valiant holds in his power an enchanted shield which causes great harm to his opponents. Merlin's attempts to warn everyone fall on deaf ears- and Arthur is next to face Valiant.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Colin Morgan


  • Richard Wilson (III)


  • Anthony Stewart Head

    King Uther Pendragon

  • Angel Coulby

    Gwen (Guinevere)

  • Katie McGrath


  • Fan Reviews (6)
  • excellent

    By thashitharans, Jun 15, 2013

  • Valiant comes to Camelot to attempt to win the courts combat tournament but he is using a magical shield that poisons his opponents. Merlin makes the discovery and then must figure out a way to save Arthur before he meets Valiant in the tournament final.

    By jyarter, Jun 23, 2009

  • An exciting episode, Valiant is a clever follow-up to the first episode Dragon's Call.

    By summersnowbiiee, Jun 03, 2009

  • A more than valiant effort

    By AvatarBlue, Nov 17, 2008

  • The plot is reasonably predictable, but still the development of the relationship between Merlin and Arthur is the key to the overall show and this is done sensitively, with a level of trust growing and Merlin softening Arthurs character to semi likable.

    By brodiejo152003, Oct 06, 2008

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (18)

    • Arthur: I wanted to say, I made a mistake. It was unfair to sack you. Merlin: No, don't worry about it. Buy me a drink and we'll call it even. Arthur: I can't really be seen to be buying drinks for my servant. Merlin: Your servant? You sacked me. Arthur: Now I'm rehiring you. My chambers are a complete mess. My clothes need washing, my armour needs repairing, my boots need cleaning, my dogs need exercising, my fireplace needs sweeping, my bed needs changing and someone needs to muck out my stables.

    • Morgana: Has your father apologised yet for not believing you? Arthur: He'll never apologise. I hope you're not disappointed Valiant's not escorting you. Morgana: Turns out he wasn't really champion material. Arthur: That was some tournament final. Morgana: Tell me about it. It's not every day a girl gets to save her prince. Arthur: I wouldn't say I needed exactly saving. I'm sure I would have thought of something. Morgana: See, you're too proud to admit you were saved by a girl! Arthur: Because I wasn't. Morgana: You know what? I wish Valiant was escorting me. Arthur: Me too. Then I wouldn't have to listen to you.

    • Arthur: I thought I told you to get out of my sight. Merlin: Don't fight Valiant in the final tomorrow. He'll use the shield against you. Arthur: I know. Merlin: Then withdraw. You have to withdraw. Arthur: Don't you understand? I can't withdraw. The people expect their prince to fight. How can I lead men into battle if they think I'm a coward? Merlin: Valiant will kill you! You fight, you die. Arthur: Then I die. Merlin: How can you go out there and fight like that? Arthur: Because I have to. It's my duty.

    • Gwen: Is it true what you said about Valiant using magic? (Merlin nods) What are you going to do? Merlin: Why does everyone seem to think it's down to me to do something about it? Gwen: Because it is! Isn't it? You have to show everyone that you were right and they were wrong.

    • Merlin: Where are you? I just came to tell you, whatever you think my destiny is, whatever it is you think I'm supposed to do, you've got the wrong person! That's it. Goodbye. The Great Dragon: If only it were so easy to escape one's destiny. Merlin: How can it be my destiny to protect someone who hates me. The Great Dragon: The half cannot truly hate that which makes it whole. Very soon, you shall learn that. Merlin: Oh, great. Just what I needed. Another riddle. The Great Dragon: That your and Arthur's path lies together is but the truth. Merlin: What is that supposed to mean? The Great Dragon: You know, young warlock, this is not the end. It is the beginning. Merlin: Just give me a straight answer!

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    Notes (21)

    • Also Known As:
      France: Le Chevalier Vaillant, meaning 'The Knight Valiant'.
      Germany: Ein Ritter Spielt Falsch, meaning 'A Knight Cheats'.
      Russia: Валиэнт.
      Ukraine: Веліант.

    • Bradley James watched Gladiator and 300 to prepare for his action scenes.

    • Angel Coulby and Bradley James recorded an audio commentary for this episode.

    • In the training sequence between Arthur and Merlin, Bradley James fights against Buster Reeves, who was Christian Bale's stunt in Batman Begins. Colin Morgan is only present at the very last bit of the sequence, once the helmet is removed.

    • Bradley James was hit in the head several times while filming this episode, so he had a mild concussion for several days.

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    Trivia (33)

    • Goof: When Merlin gathers Arthur's armour from the armoury, he picks a helmet that looks nothing like the one Arthur wears in all the fights throughout the episode.

    • Unlike in later episodes, Morgana's premonitory dream doesn't show footage that would eventually be seen later on in the episode.

    • Goof: The shape and size of the windows in Arthur's bed chamber clearly differs when they are depicted from the inside and when they are depicted from the outside.

    • The Pendragon device is: "Gules, a wyvern statant Or." (On a red background, a gold wyvern standing). Knight Valiant's device is: "Agent, three snakes proper nowed." (On a white/silver background, three realistic snakes in a knot.)

    • The golden necklace that Morgana wears during the feast at the end of the episode is the same one that Lady Catrina wears during her wedding to Uther in episode 2x05 Beauty and the Beast – Part One.

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