Following Gwen's disappearance from Camelot without a word, Merlin is certain that there can only be one person behind her kidnapping: Morgana.
Arthur is determined to rescue his Queen; however, it'll be all but an easy task since she is locked in the Dark Tower, a place that haunts the dreams of men.
King Arthur and his Knights embark themselves on a quest without equal: battling their way through a landscape filled with hidden dangers, deadly obstacles and magical beings.
As they reach their destination, Merlin's sense of dread reaches its limit. What twisted plan has Morgana in mind? And more importantly, what is the final test that awaits them in the tower?moreless
Voice of the Great Dragon
Mordred (Alexander Vlahos) has no lines in this episode. Despite not being credited, he can be seen standing to Gwaine's left during Elyan's funeral.
Queen Mab is the eighth character who addresses Merlin as 'Emrys'. Mordred did so in episodes 1x08 The Beginning of the End, episode 2x03 The Nightmare Begins, episode 2x11 The Witch's Quickening, episode 5x01 Arthur's Bane Part 1 and episode 5x02 Arthur's Bane Part 2, Taliesin in episode 3x05 The Crystal Cave, The Fisher King in episode 3x08 The Eye Of The Phoenix, Iseldir in episode 3x12 The Coming of Arthur Part 1 and 4x04 Aithusa, The Cailleach in episode 4x01 The Darkest Hour, Part 1, Lochru in episode 5x01 Arthur's Bane Part 1 and The Euchdag in episode 5x02 Arthur's Bane Part 2.
Morgana (4x01, 4x07), Alator of the Catha (4x07), Agravaine (4x07) and Gaius (4x07) have also referred to him as 'Emrys'.
Sir Elyan is killed in this episode becoming the 2nd named Knight of the Round Table to die after Sir Lancelot (who sacrificed himself for Arthur in episode 4x02 The Darkest Hour Part 2). His dead body is burnt in the same fashion and place as Freya in episode 2x09 The Lady Of The Lake) and Lancelot (Lancelot's shadow as seen in episode 4x09 Lancelot Du Lac) before him (inside a boat gliding over a lake).
Goof: The Mandrake root drops on Gwen's face change their shape between takes.
The Mandrake root first appeared in episode 3x01 The Tears Of Uther Pendragon Part 1. It pierces the depths of the soul, twisting the unconscious into the very image of fear and dread.
Goof: The horses in which Arthur and the knights leave Camelot are not the same ones that they can be seen riding later on during the episode.
Goof: Percival's sword is already broken in half before hitting the shrubbery and getting ruined.
Queen Mab is the spirit of the Impenetrable Forest and of all the places that bring despair to men's hearts. Few have ever seen her.
Goof: Even though a thick wall of vegetation can be seen at Merlin's back when he is talking to Queen Mab, he is able to clearly see Arthur and the knights when he turns around.
The Dark Tower is a black pillar of stone so dark it could swallow the sun. It's a place where every young knight is taught to dread and many have met their end there. It's said that the mere mention of it can bring doom to any of those who hear it.
To reach to it, the bewildering Impenetrable Forest and the Dolorous Plains need to be crossed.
(Gwen and Elyan are visiting their father's grave)
Gwen: Even after all these years I still miss him.
Sir Elyan: He was a good father. I'm glad we came.
Gwen: So am I.
Sir Leon: (About Tom, Gwen and Elyan's father) I think he'd be proud.
Gwen: Particularly of Elyan.
Sir Elyan: Me?
Gwen: Not just because you're a knight, but because of the man you've become.
Sir Elyan: I don't think so.
Sir Percival: She's right.
Sir Gwaine: Absolutely.
Sir Gwaine: You're outstanding, especially when it comes to trying to sweet-talk the ladies, if nothing else.
Sir Elyan: Don't listen to him.
Sir Percival: No. Elyan loves only one woman.
Sir Elyan: You.
Gwen: Tell me, I'm your sister.
Sir Gwaine: Did Arthur not say?
Gwen: Arthur never tells me anything.
Sir Elyan: But he told you who Gwaine's in love with?
Morgana: (After knocking Gwen off her horse using magic) Sleep, my lady... for it could be some time before you do so again.
Arthur: What happened?
Sir Elyan: We were riding, we came upon a nest of snakes.
Arthur: (Looks around the room) Where's Guinevere? (No one speaks) Where is she?
Sir Elyan: I told her to get away. She fled.
(Arthur looks to Elyan and Gwaine and leaves. Merlin follows him)
Arthur: We ride at dawn.
Gaius: This is no accident.
Gaius: There is dark magic coursing through their veins. By any right, they should be dead.
Merlin: Then they were lucky.
Gaius: I fear there's more to it than luck.
Arthur: I lost Guinevere once before.
Merlin: You're not going to lose her. You're not. We will find her. I swear. We'll bring her home (Merlin holds his arm out and Arthur joins him in an arm shake)
Gwen: What do you want with me?
Morgana: I thought we could play a little game.
Gwen: A game?
Morgana: To find out just how much Arthur loves you.
Gwen: It won't work.
Morgana: You underestimate his feelings.
Gwen: He's not stupid.
Morgana: We'll see.
Gwen: He'll know you've taken me, he'll know it's a trap.
Morgana: He will, but he'll still come.
Gwen: I don't want anything from you.
Morgana: Just my crown (Offers her a skin of water) Drink it, you may need it.
Morgana: I wouldn't be in such a hurry to know (Lets the water drop to the ground)
Arthur: (Arthur wants to press on searching for Gwen after dark) She can't be far.
Merlin: I know. But we have to work together. We'll make camp, I'll get a fire going. In the morning we'll pick up her trail again. Come on.
Sir Elyan: If I'd stayed with her...
Arthur: You saved Percival, you saved Leon.
Sir Elyan: But not my own sister.
Arthur: We can all blame ourselves.
Sir Elyan: She raised me. You wouldn't understand.
Arthur: I do.
Sir Elyan: I don't know... what I'd be if it wasn't for her. I can't explain.
Arthur: You don't have to.
Sir Leon: (About a dream he's had) A tower so dark it could swallow the sun.
Arthur: The Dark Tower. It's a place where every young knight is taught to dread, and rightly so. It's where many have met their end.
Merlin: I've never heard of it.
Arthur: With good reason. It's said that the mere mention of it can bring doom to any of those who hear it.
Sir Gwaine: I was having a dream about eating a cheese that tasted of apple pie. Anyone else have that dream? (He laughs) You're all missing out.
(Sir Leon and Sir Percival have both had the same nightmare)
Arthur: Why would they both have that dream?
Merlin: The poison. It must still be coursing through their veins.
Arthur: But the same dream?
Merlin: Arthur, Morgana conjured those snakes. Leon and Percival would be dead if that was what she wanted.
Arthur: So what are you saying?
Merlin: She planted those visions in their minds. It's a trap. She's luring you to your doom.
Arthur: The Tower. That's where she's taken Guinevere.
Arthur: I've decided to journey to the Dark Tower. It's my belief that Guinevere has been imprisoned there. I don't know what horrors will be waiting, so I'll travel alone.
Sir Elyan: No.
Arthur: I'm sorry, I've made my decision.
Sir Elyan: You can't stop me, Arthur. She's my sister.
Sir Percival: Nor me, Arthur, she's our queen.
Sir Leon: And our friend.
Sir Gwaine: She's a maiden in a tower. A damsel in distress. I was born for this moment.
Arthur: You can turn back, Merlin.
Merlin: I made you a promise, remember?
Arthur: The Dark Tower.
Sir Gwaine: How do we get to it?
Arthur: Through the Impenetrable Forest.
Merlin: But it's...
Sir Gwaine: ... impenetrable.
Merlin: Exactly. We can't possibly get through that.
Arthur: We must.
Arthur: We have gone round... in a circle. We have wasted an entire day!
Sir Leon: Let's make camp for the night. Get some rest and think afresh in the morning.
Merlin: (To Arthur) I made you a promise. Remember? We will bring her home.
Gwen: I don't know what cruel trick you're playing but I will not be broken by you.
Morgana: I thought this would be nice. I know how lonely you must be, all by yourself in that room. At least you're not shackled... and there's daylight. You can move, you can see...
Gwen: You expect me to be grateful?
Morgana: I too have suffered, Gwen. I spent two years living in darkness. Spent two years chained to a wall at the bottom of a pit. You did not know.
Gwen: (Gwen shakes her head)
Morgana: I would have sold my soul for someone to show me kindness such as this.
Queen Mab: You have a mind's eye, Emrys, you must learn to trust in it for far greater challenges lie ahead.
Merlin: When we reach the Dark Tower?
Queen Mab: If.
Queen Mab: You must beware, Emrys. The Tower is not a real place. It is the heart's rest, the mind's deepest fear, the stillness in the hummingbird's eye.
Merlin: Stop talking in riddles.
Queen Mab: Then I shall talk in rhyme. Heed my words with due concern, for one of you will not return.
Merlin: We need to head North.
Arthur: And which way is that, Merlin?
Merlin: That way.
Arthur: No, it's... (He can tell by the sun that Merlin is right) ..over there. How on earth would you know that?
Merlin: Sense of smell. When the wind is from the North, you can smell the sea.
Arthur: That's ridiculous.
Merlin: Trust me. Just this once.
Gwen: Why are you doing this?
Morgana: Because we're friends, we always were.
Gwen: Leave me alone.
Gwen: What are you trying to do to me?
Morgana: I'm helping you. I'm looking after you. I want nothing from you. Well, if you change your mind, let me know.
Gwen: Don't look. You'll be all right. Don't look. You'll be all right (Sobs) Don't look. Don't look. You'll be all right.
(Gwen is having an illusion)
Gwen: Oh, Arthur! No. I know it's not you. I know it's not you. I know it's not you. I know it's not you.
Arthur: Guinevere... look at me.
Gwen: I know it's not you.
Gwen: I know it's not you.
Arthur: It's me. It's Arthur.
Gwen: I know it's not you.
Arthur: See? It's me. It's Arthur. You're safe now (He laughs mockingly)
(Gwen is sobbing after having had a distressful vision)
Morgana: It's all right. It's all right. I'm here. I'm here. My darling, I was wrong to make you suffer. The mandrake root is cruel. It pierces the depths of your soul, twisting your unconscious into the very image of fear and dread. Gwen, you've been so courageous, but it was necessary. Gwen, you're not alone now. You need never be alone again. I am the only one you can trust. I am all you have left in the world. The others taunt you, hate you. Come... you need some rest, some proper rest.
Gwen: No! Whatever twisted game you're playing, I want no part in it. I would rather stay here and die.
Merlin: Something's wrong. It's too easy.
Arthur: Are you ever happy?
Sir Elyan: I'll go first. I'll push on.
Arthur: No, Elyan!
Sir Elyan: None of us would even be here if it wasn't for me. I have to do this.
(A magical sword is preventing Elyan from freeing Gwen)
Gwen: It will not let you pass. Morgana has enchanted it to protect me. You can't free me, Elyan. Leave me here. Please.
Sir Elyan: No!
Gwen: You cannot overcome it. It will fight to the death!
Sir Elyan: (Mortally wounded after fighting to free his sister) For a moment... I didn't think I was going to win.
Gwen: Father would be proud of you.
Sir Elyan: And of you. So proud (He dies)
Merlin: I was warned one of us would not return.
Gaius: It's not your fault, Merlin.
Merlin: Elyan is dead.
Gaius: The sword that Elyan fell prey to was surely intended for Arthur. Now he's safe and so is Gwen.
Gwen: Arthur thinks he's won. He has no idea.
Morgana: Do you understand now who you can trust?
Gwen: It is you, Morgana. It has only ever been you.
Morgana: You're not one of them and you never will be.
Gwen: You don't know how much I hate them. All of them.
Morgana: You've done well to see past the lies to the real truth. You've an important part to play in the future. Together we will ensure the destruction of everything Arthur holds dear.
Also Known As:
Germany: Der Dunkle Turm.
Poland: Mroczna wieza.
Portugal: A Torre Negra.
This episode is the darkest of the show and the producers never thought of going any further. Their guideline is thinking of things that would fit in a PG Hollywood film.
The producers decided to kill Elyan off to make the show a true reflection of reality: the band of knights had been together for two series up to this point and it didn't feel right that there hasn't been any casualty among them. Choosing Elyan and this episode made for interesting drama since they could turn and twist Gwen's grief.
The producers of the show were aware of some of the legends where Gwen stands on the opposite side to Arthur, and they were inspired on those to write the enchanted storyline in.
The Great Dragon does not appear in this episode, but John Hurt is credited for the voice-over at the beginning of it.
10 November 2012 at 20:05–20:50 on BBC One.
16 November 2012 at 17:00-17:45 on BBC Three.
-Château de Pierrefonds, Pierrefonds, Oise, France (Camelot).
-Cardiff, Wales, UK (Studio sets).
-Brecon Beacons, Wales, UK (Tom's grave).
-Forest of Compiegne, Oise, France (Morgana ambushes Gwen and the knights).
-Fforest Fawr, Cardiff, Wales, UK (Forest scenes).
-Trefil Quarry, Tredegar, Blaenau Gwent, Brecon Beacons, Wales, UK (Barren landscape around Dark Tower).
-Margam Country Park, Margam, Port Talbot, Wales, UK (The Impenetrable Forest).
-River Wye, Axe Edge Moor, Derbyshire, England, UK (The ridge from where Arthur looks out).
-Caerphilly Castle, Castle Street, Caerphilly, Mid Glamorgan, Wales, UK (The Dark Tower – Exterior).
-Speech House Lake, Spruce Ride, Ruspidge, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, England (Elyan's resting place).
-Puzzlewood, Forest of Dean, Coleford, Gloucestershire (Morgana and Gwen's meeting, last scene).
International Air Dates:
Australia: November 18, 2012 on Channel 10.
Canada: February 9th, 2013 on Space.
USA: February 8, 2013 on Syfy.
Turkey: March 17, 2013 on CNBC-e.
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