Being a Netflix subscriber comes with some additional perks, one is that you can watch the TV station 'Starz' live through a streaming broadcast. This is good because it lets me see the new program "Camelot" 90 days before the moratorium on it being on Netflix's Instant service runs out.
On Wednesday I wanted the first two episodes, which formed a two part story. It was.. apart from frankly grafted on feeling sex scenes.. not too bad. The usage of foul language is kept to a minimum, which is probably a good thing as the F-Bomb came over with Horsa and Hengist and dosen't make much sense historically...
Cast wise Joeseph Feinnes turns in a very unique Merlin.. who is Half Peter O'Toole and Half Christopher Lambert. (Described by the actor as Obi Wan Kenobi meets Donald Rumsfield) Manipulative and yet so blundering that by the 3rd episode he walks right into Morgan's (Eva Green, even more smarmy in this than in Casino Royale) trap. Once we get past them however.. we have to confront Arthur and Guinevere.. both of whom seem to be played by perpetually startled deer with very little discernible acting capability. Guinevere's father is played by Daragh O'Mally who you may recognize as Patrick Harper from the Sharpe's series. Several other quite good actors are in the show as well, Sean Pertwee as Ector, and James Purfoy as King Lot. But most of the show seems to really fixate on Arthur's wet dreams.
The show is rife with other odd anachronisms that your average viewer wouldn't notice.. Arthur, uses the name "England" at least once in the course of the program. That was probably a slip, he didn't use it again in the 3rd episode.. and we will just have to see if it shows up again. And of course we have the token minorities wandering around the village as well. Several people who appear to be of middle eastern extraction, and the third episode features a former African slave who sides with Morgan in her plotting. They at least attempt to explain this as being people who came there or were brought there due to the Romans.
The costumes are an odd mix of stuff left over from other movies or TV series.. I'm sure some stuff from the very short lived Heath Ledger program "Roar" is even in use.. along with a good bit of stuff that looks like it belongs to Braveheart They use odd little round metal shields (almost miniatures of the ones from TROY/300)but also use swords more akin to what was available in the 1100's during the Crusades.
Camelot itself almost looks more like a 1930's style train station or government building than a Castle.. certainly not a Roman Castle anyway..
I'll probably tune in to a few more episodes.. It's easily better than Legend of the Seeker.. but I don't suspect the program will be able to hold up all that well compared to Game of Thrones.